television -> Bates Motel Episode 7 Review and Recap

Bates Motel Episode 7 Review and Recap

The Man in Number 9

by Ronald Halsten

Things picked up right where they left off this week with Sheriff Romero arriving at the scene of the gunfight between Deputy Zack and Dylan.  Romero walks up to Zack’s lifeless body and utters only three words: “You better talk.”

The next scene cuts to the four them in the house (Norma, Dylan, Romero and Norman) with Norma explaining everything (or at least her version of everything) to the sheriff.  The sheriff then gets them to agree to a made up story about him in which he guns down Deputy Zack after suspecting him of the prostitution ring.  The whole thing makes him out to be a hero and the actual hero, Dylan, out to be some helpless victim of crossfire.  In addition, the story scapegoats Zack as the murderer of Keith Summers (I guess Norma is truly off the hook for that one now).  When the sheriff leaves the house, Norma and Norman embrace each other in a fit of relief.  Dylan looks on with a jealous and saddened look on his face.

The next scene is Norman and Bradley between the sheets in Norman’s bed engaging in some sexual intercourse.  Norma walk in on them and it becomes apparent that Norman was having a date with his hand and his imagination.  He awkwardly sits up and covers his embarrassment.  After a little bit of small talk, Norma asks Norman to fix the porch.

When Norman looks under the porch, he sees a small, malnourished dog.  He throws the dog a piece of breakfast he had left.  The dog eats it and Norman tries calling it over to him.  It runs past him and off into the distance (okay, so this may be reaching here, but I think that the dog represents Norman’s hope for normalcy.  You will see what I mean by the end of the review).

Dylan enters the kitchen to find Norma cooking him breakfast.  This perplexes him and she gleefully explains that she is grateful for everything (Dylan put his life on the line in the shootout with psycho Deputy Zack).  Dylan reluctantly accepts Norma’s gratitude and sits down to eat. Dylan tells Norma that he is still moving out.  “Even after everything I told you about your brother,” Norma said.  Dylan says, “I don’t know how can I help you.” Norma then becomes agitated and storms off.  It seems as though Dylan is putting the walls back up after what he learned in the last episode.

While taking out the trash, Dylan sees a car parked outside the motel.  There is a strange man in the car asking about the Seafarer Motel (the name of the motel that Keith Summers ran).

Dylan tells the strange man that they are the new owners.  The man asks to speak to Keith Summers and Dylan informs him that he is dead.  Without even a shred of concern, the man thanks Dylan and drives off.

Bradley is back at school and Norman can’t wait to talk to her.  The problem is that she isn’t really looking to talk to him.  It is an awkward scene and poor Norman doesn’t have the social awareness to pick up on it.

Later on, Norma goes to local restaurant in hopes of some free advertising for her motel. The woman tells her she cannot take any of her ads.  She then explains to Norma that everyone has found out about the murder of Deputy Zack and what went on at the motel before she became the owner.

Norma’s motel woes continue as she disappointedly looks at the lack of motel reservations on her laptop. Norma notices the strange man from earlier on in the episode creepily trying to enter his room with an old key from the Seafarer days.  Norma, being so desperate for business, overlooks the sheer weirdness of the man’s demeanor and gives him a room without a second thought (she doesn’t even bother to get his information).

Dylan comes back and realizes that someone is staying at the motel.  When he asks Norma, she tells him about the strange man and his standing reservation from the old motel owner.  Dylan makes the connection that it is the weird guy from the parking lot earlier.  All of this perturbs Dylan and he insists on collecting the strange man’s information.

When Dylan goes to get the man’s information.  He continues to act shady.  He shows Dylan his driver’s license.  Dylan asks the man what kind of work he does.  He claims that he is in sales, but doesn’t specify or elaborate at all.  When Dylan asks for a credit card, the man pulls out a wad of hundreds and hands over a handful of them.

Norma is at the top of the steps trying to scrub out Deputy Zack’s blood from the concrete.  Dylan tries to explain to her that concrete is porous and it won’t come out.   She curses out the past events as a detriment to the success of the motel.  Dylan gives her the stack of hundreds and walks off.  “You can’t get blood out of stone, Norma.” (both figurative and literal).

Dylan and Norman are picking up supplies for the motel when they run into Norman’s crush, Bradley.  Dylan pieces together that Bradley is the girl Norman got lucky with.  She approaches Dylan and Norman to say hello.  Dylan introduces himself and it is clear that Bradley has a thing for him (Norman just can’t catch a break).

In the next scene, Emma knocks on the door looking for Norman.  She notices dog food that Norman left out on the porch for the stray dog from earlier. Emma asks Norma if they got a dog and Norma tells her no with a confused look on her face.  Norma goes upstairs and tells Norman that Emma is there to visit him.  She tries to push Norman to hang out with her, but Norman will have none of it.  He tells his mom to tell Emma that he is sick.

When Norma tells Emma Norman’s white lie, Emma is devastated.  She heads for the door with tears in her eyes.  Norma, feeling a heavy heart for Emma, invites her out to run an errand get lunch with her. 

On the way there, Norma pries into Norman’s personal life through Emma.  She gets Emma to reveal all of what Norman has been up to with Bradley.  Both of these Norman-obsessed ladies decide to go to where Bradley is taking a yoga class so Norma can get a look at her.  When they there, Norma gets a good look at Bradley and recognizes her from the night she came to the door looking to hang out with Norman.  There is a moment of real weirdness when Norma’s face is filled with disdain/sadness after closely she examines Bradley (almost a jealous kind of look.  Any way you slice it, it’s not how a mother should react to seeing her son’s fling).

Back at the motel, Norman bonds with his new dog by giving him piece of a cookie.  The dog is apprehensive at first, but Norman finally gets through to it and the dog eats out of his hand.  The dog gets spooked when Norma abruptly interrupts the two of them.  After Norman convinces his mother to let him keep the dog, she gives him the sex talk.  She explains the complexities of having a sexual relationship with someone and actually makes a little bit of sense.  Norman refuses to give up on his feelings for Bradley (after being ignored by her ever since their hookup).

Norman decides to go over to Bradley’s to find out for himself.  He rings the doorbell and pours his heart out to her.  Bradley tries to let Norman down gently, but Norman is clearly heartbroken.  The seeds of Norman’s psychosis are evident when he begins to frantically repeat what his mother said about Bradley back at the house (the split personality is starting to develop).

Norman heads home to find his new dog waiting for him.  He tries to call it, but unfortunate timing strikes and the dog is ran over by an SUV (man, this just isn’t Norman’s day).

He cradles the dead dog in his arms and Norma tries to console him when she realizes that Norma was just dumped by Bradley.

This week’s episode was definitely not as intense as last week.  It was dialogue-heavy and there weren’t many exciting moments.  It did serve its purpose though:  furthering and developing the story.  


Keywords: Bates Motel, Psycho, Norman Bates, Norma Bates, A&E Bates Pscyho,The Man in Number 9, Bates Motel Review
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