Bates Motel, Season 3 – “The Arcanum Club”

Bates Motel - Norman in the office

Bates Motel - Norman in the office

Bates Motel, Season 3 continued with Episode 2, “The Arcanum Club,” on Monday. Where last week’s Season Premiere caught us up with what happened since Season 2, this episode began shaping the rest of Season 3.

But let’s start off with a definition to get a better grasp of the title, which should give us a better understanding of what the major subplot will be this season. As it turns out, “The Arcanum Club” isn’t just an Eyes Wide Shut occultist sex club discovered by Norma and attended by Sheriff Romero. What it is exactly, we don’t know yet, but according to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, “arcanum” is defined as: “mysterious or specialized knowledge, language, or information accessible or possessed only by the initiate.”

So, what is the mysterious knowledge possessed by the initiate of The Arcanum Club? Undoubtedly, Norma will pressure Romero to find out, and they’ll end up investigating together, and in the process distract her from Norman’s troubles. However, club members might snoop around to find out what happened to Annika, the call girl we’ve been led to believe Norman knocked off. Then again, why would these exclusive club members give a damn about a missing hooker?

Bates Motel - Norma and Romero

We did see remnants of the romantic spark between Norma and Romero in this episode (see Romero settling his debt to the motel and their subsequently awkward hug thingy), so perhaps that will get rekindled with a joint investigation. In the process, it could also draw Romero in to protect the Bates family once again.

We also saw the tangible horror in Norma’s face when, while looking for the missing guest in room four, she learned that Norman had driven off with Annika, and her immediate assumption was that Norman had killed the escort. That’s what led her to investigate the Arcanum Club. How far will Norma go to protect her son? How many bodies is she willing to bury? Will she ever regret her decisions?

Bates Motel - Norman and Emma

Meanwhile, Norman is shifting back and forth between innocent boy and psychotic killer with more and more ease. Perhaps more aware of himself than ever before and preparing a public face that’s normal with a normal relationship with a normal girl. But despite Norman’s preoccupation and his running off with Annika last week, Emma seems adamant about furthering her status as Norman’s girlfriend, which is strange.

Bates Motel - Chick, Dylan, Caleb 2

Then there’s Dylan, his dad, Caleb, and their mysterious neighbor, Chick. Here we have another subplot developing, and it may have its roots in the marijuana growing industry… again. Either way, Chick adds an element of danger to Dylan’s situation. Chick is introduced to us as he wanders onto Dylan’s property in search of his missing dog, but we know that Chick knows that his dog is dead… and that eerie whistle… spooooky. Then, when Dylan and overcompensating Caleb visit Chick’s place, Chick claims not to have a dog, but he does have a lot of guns. It will be interesting to see where this storyline goes.

Bates Motel - Chick, Dylan, Caleb

And so, the final questions:

-Was that Annika’s body in the water at the end of the episode?
-Was Norman’s outburst at the Lee Berman Memorial Pass sign indicative of something to come or was it simply a reminder that the bypass is still an issue?

Rock Hard \m/

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