Remember how Bates Motel CRUELLY killed A DOG last week? Of COURSE you do.
Well this episode is all about stuffin’ it.
No, it’s not ew, it’s a clear reference to the Hitchcock film, and laying groundwork for both Norman’s psychosis and how he got into taxidermy.
Ok, it’s a little ew.
Aaaand we open up with Emma’s dad with the dog’s corpse showing Norman how to cut the dog open and stuff it. Starts with dead disembowelment and then putting stuff into it to “make it lifelike.” Emma’s dad even gives him a book that is a how-to, complete with illustrations.
Vote for creepiest lesson ever? The gross bondfest continues with Emma’s dad saying Norman seems “artistic,” like taxidermists should be.
We switch over to Emma having a coughing fit in the ladies room and overhearing Bradley’s friends talking about Norman and Bradley. Emma comes out defending Norman, that he DID have sex with her all right, and tells one of the girls she has toilet paper on her shoe.
Mad burn! One point for Emma. Negative five for Bradley for having such lame, catty friends.
Meanwhile, Norma calls for the Sheriff. What? They were so frenemies, then enemies, and now she’s calling him like he’s her….and then we see that creepy “I need the motel for an entire week and it’s gotta be on the down low” stalking her outside her window.
Dylan gets a call from his boss who tells him to go on a run with his new partner for “trimmers.” It sounds illegal. Oh wait, it is.
Bradley confronts Norman about letting the cat out of the bag and basically tells him she’s ashamed of sleeping with him. Norman holds the crazy in check and doesn’t rip her head off. His Language Arts (NOT English teacher) sees the exchange, then runs after Norman when Norman leaves the school in the middle of the day. “You’ll get cited Norman!” “I don’t care!” shouts Norman. Then he pushes the teacher.
Hello violent tendencies asserting themselves again.
Meanwhile, Norma puts on her housekeeping outfit and asks when she should make up Jack Abernathy’s room. He tells her “now is fine” and then proceeds to watch her clean the room. Creepy.
Then he interrogates her about both Shelby’s and Keith Summer’s deaths. More creepy. God, I didn’t think the words “sex trade” could get creepier, but they did in that scene. Clearly, Norma is freaked out too since she breaks the lamp. Creepy Abernathy comes to hover over her and continue to interrogate her about Shelby and Summers. Then he stares at her. Creepily.
Norma tries to run out and Creepy Abernathy—Creepy Nathy—Creepnathy! There it is! Anyways, he grabs her cart to keep her from leaving…
… to grab some fresh towels.
Creepnathy you’re soooo creepy.
Norma runs to the Sheriff and asks a) him to his advice on how to fight the bypass being built that will put her motel off the map completely and then b) asks the Sheriff to endorse her for a city planning seat. He asks her “why would I do that?” She says “because of what we’ve been through…we know each other”. He says they don’t know each other at all, and he just saved her ass once and that’s it.
Norma gets mad and half threatens the Sheriff. He closes the door and leans over her and gets all don’t threaten me back and “I’ll burn you down to the ground”. He then tells her the two of them are not on the same playing field.
Nope. They clearly ain’t since that was THE BEST smackdown evah! Guyliner Sheriff, strong work.
Off the heels of that, Norma gets a call from the principal’s office about Norman. It never rains but it pours, darlin’.
Dylan goes on his road trip.
Norman confronts Emma about her “ratting about his personal life” ways. Norman asks her to keep a freakin’ secret why don’t you. Emma says, “ok” and everything’s ok.
Norma talks to the principal and his Language Arts teacher and gets a lecture about Norman’s “emotional instability”. Not only is Norman getting suspended, but they want him to talk to a school shrink. Norma says um…that’s bad… cuuuzz I want to choose the therapist! His teacher says, “he really should see a therapist”.
Dylan and his new partner go drinking together and well, veritas in vino. His new partner groans about why, with 23 years of experience, he’s under Dylan. Well, sucks to be a company man.
Dylan tells him he’s a pathetic loser. His new partner then proceeds to kick his ass. Well, he tries to. They have a bar fight. It’s vaguely pathetic. Everyone punches each other until everyone feels better.
Annnd they’re semi bonded. Men are weird.
Dylan finds out Gil isn’t the big boss, and also that his new partner stays with the biz b/c he can’t quit. There’s no quitting, only getting fired, which sounds suspiciously like getting killed.
On that lovely note, we leave Dylan for Norma and Norman. She tells him he has to fit in. He says I do. Then he tells her he’s learning taxidermy with Emma’s dad. Yeah, Norman, way to convince her you’re “fitting in”.
Cut to Emma’s dad fitting the dog’s skin on a model. Yuck yuck yuuuuuuccccck.
Norma and Mr. Shaw have a little chat about how this might be a bad thing for Norman to learn, aka, he’s a little weirdo and learning this won’t help. Mr. Shaw explains hobbies can be good. Norma says “I don’t want him to be a freak!” Mr. Shaw is all like, “so taxidermists are freaks?” Mr. Shaw more or less then explains taxidermists are like poets and Norma should let Norman follow his passion about dead things. As he says, “what could go wrong with that?”
Yes, what could go wrong with NORMAN BATES? If only they knew what WE know…
Dylan picks up the trimmers shipment, which is more or less a bunch of hippies. His new partner tries to get him to leave one annoying guitarist behind. Dylan says no.
Mr. Shaw continues to teach Norman how to stuff his dog and they bond some more over Norman’s dead dog and how to precisely pin the eyes.
Gag gag gag gaaaaag.
Norma, driving back to the motel, sees Creepnathy pull out and thinks, “hey why don’t I follow him?” Brilliant move, Norma, follow the creepy guy in the Cadillac. And do it badly because there’s no one else on the road and you are leaving far less space than the regulation one car body.
Norma sees him pull into the marina and then GETS OUT OF HER CAR to follow him some more. She’s sees him go into Summer’s boat and watches him look around. He spots her. She ducks. He leaves the boat. She gets caught.
Awkward life threatening situation, coming up. In 3…2…
Creepnathy asks her, “where is it?” and she all like, “what are you talking about?” She tries avoidance. He follows her and tells her “he’s on the top rung”. She runs away and right into a therapist’s office with Norman.
She sits IN on the therapy session.
Ok, no therapist is gonna allow that. Seriously. She’s supposed to be outside in the waiting room.
Naturally Norma completely takes over the session, especially since the therapist starts talking about Norman’s dad. The therapist pretty much gets the problem with Norman in one measuring look at his mother.
Back with Dylan, the trimmers are annoying. Dylan kicks out the most annoying (the guitarist, figures) AT GUNPOINT. His partner smirks. Oh dear. I smell bad decision.
The therapist has a nice, private chat with Norma and asks her if he could see Norman alone. She’s not comfortable with that. The therapist suggests Norma may need therapy and more or less calls her a control freak. She doesn’t take that well.
They get home and Norma confronts Creepnathy and gives him back his money/throws it at him and kicks him out. She tells him they won’t have business with him and then threatens him with the cops. He takes it as a challenge and seems amused. She gets mad and storms off and yells at him to get out.
Meanwhile, Norman is petting his now stuffed dog at the Shaws’ when Emma comes to join him and tells him that she overheard girls talking badly about Norman and that’s why she spilled the beans. She apologizes him and calls him “special”. He makes her feel “safe”.
Ironic foreshadowing maybe?
They hug and Mr. Shaw walks in, sees it, but it’s ok, it’s just a “we’re good friends” hug.
While Norma cleans Creepnathy’s now vacant rooms, Dylan pulls up with his trimmers. He asks her to book them into the motel. She doesn’t realize they’re engaging in illegal trimming activity and thanks him, and asks him to a mother-son dinner. He accepts. Awwwwwww.
The awww quickly turns to “arghghhghgh!!!!” when she goes up to her bedroom and finds Shelby’s dead body in her bed.
That fucked up shit is probs a present from Creepnathy. I mean, c’mon. Who else would do that?
Oh, Norma. You sure picked the wrong motel to buy.
Den Of Geek Score: 3.5 Out Of 5 Stars