Bates Motel, Season 2 – “Meltdown”

bates motel - metldown - norma stares at bird

bates motel - metldown - norma stares at bird

Last week’s episode of Bates Motel was probably the closest to a Hitchcockian episode in the series’ history, at least from my recollection. The drama, the pacing, the tension between characters, and, of course, the score, all made for a great deal of suspense and thrill.

I do realize that I’m terribly late in delivering this write up about Bates Motel’s “Meltdown,” which by the way is a deadeye title, so I apologize to those who had been looking for it sooner.

Although the primary meltdown is Norman’s (or is it?), several other characters have reached or are very near their melting points as well. Life in White Pine Bay is tough, and it’s taking its toll on everyone. The brewing drug war is touching everyone in some way and adding layers to the stress of those who are only peripherally involved. Such as Emma, who’s hardly involved yet knows the locations of drug-related offices, had a fling with an out-of-towner drug runner, and knows well enough what Dylan does that she has to ask if Norma does when Norma asks her where Dylan’s office is.

Sheriff Romero’s Meltdown

bates motel - metldown - romero
Sheriff Romero is having a type of double meltdown where Zane is concerned and with Norman regarding the discovery of his semen inside Blair Watson.

Determined to find Zane after last week’s attack on the Ford warehouse, Romero has his deputy out searching for him and when she reports that she has no leads, he rather aggressively tells her to work harder, be tougher, etc. Finally, he’s forced to take matters into his own hands as he chases down Dylan to question him about Zane and threatens Dylan’s life. Apparently those odd flirtations between Romero and Norma didn’t mean anything to the good sheriff.

But Dylan isn’t the only son of Norma Romero is after. He’s also trying to press a confession of sorts from Norman about his carnal affair with Miss Watson. However, as Romero made clear to his deputy in not as many words, he doesn’t want the knowledge about Norman’s semen being found in Watson getting out.

But why does Romero want to bury this knowledge? Given that Kyle was just convicted of murdering Watson, perhaps he fears his investigation skills will be called into question and he wants to protect his career. Could he want to protect the Bates family? Or maybe he wants to hand Norman over to Nick Ford (he was Watson’s father) for some family justice. As unlikely as this is, this episode’s finale does make it a possibility. (Or maybe it was the deputy who informed Ford.) Is anyone really sure who Romero is loyal to?

However, we don’t even know for sure that it was Ford’s men who took Norman at the end of “Meltdown,” and if it was, it most likely has something to do with Norma than anything Norman did to Watson.

Nick Ford’s Meltdown?

Speaking of Ford, is he having a meltdown? Not likely, but his bees nest has definitely been stirred. Ford is after Zane for attacking his warehouse and killing his men, and so he turns to Norma to help him find Dylan. (Remember that Dylan works for Ford’s rivals.) Norma is resolved not to help Ford, who essentially ends the conversation when he says, “You are beholden to me.” When Ford does finally meet up with Dylan, the obvious is made clear; Ford wants the Zane problem solved.

At least twice in this episode Ford stressed the importance of family despite his failure with his own daughter. Oddly there seems to be a forced parallel to the Bates’ family as Norman pulls away from his mother. Ultimately, however, Ford was looking for leverage over Norma, if he is in fact responsible for taking Norman.

Learn more about Norman’s and Norma’s meltdown after the jump…

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