Saturday, March 28, 2015

Learn the real meaning of Jail Bait: Bates Motel (Vera Farmiga, Freddie Highmore)

I'm watching Bates Motel and thinking this is The Goldbergs with guns.

The prequel to Psycho, Bates Motel examines the guilt-ridden relationship between Norman and his mother, Norma Bates. Yes, I said that. Norman and Norma.

It's that same kind of ludicrous, over-the-top awfulness that makes the show so spectacularly creepy.

It reminds me of a course I took at UT on horror when I learned that the very things that make us happy will also scare us to death. Think about it: clowns, dolls, mannequins.

The show does a great job of explaining why Norman, played by Freddie Highmore, is so screwed up. Partly his mother, partly his genetics, partly his mental state, he couldn't look more like Anthony Perkins.

Norma Bates, played by Academy-award nominated Vera Farmiga, is like a hyperbolic mash-up of Donna Reed and Mad Men's January Jones. One minute she's like a streak of sunlight; the next, she's swirling debris in her wake. And then there's her obsessive cleaning.

And it has a weird, anachronistic feel to it with its smart phones and 50s dressware. The set is an incredible recreation of Hitchcock's set.

One fun fact, after reading the trivia on the IMDb site, I learned that the house is based on an Ed Hopper painting, The House by the Road.

With 3 seasons under its belt, its a great show to binge watch.

Watch it on Amazon Prime Instant Video.


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