Recap by: Lady Bastard
Bates Motel – Season 4, Episode 7: There’s No Place Like Home
Synopsis: Norman earns his ticket home; the Romero honeymoon is over; Emma lets go of her mother
Overview (WITH SPOILERS): Dr. Edwards discusses the increase in Norman’s blackouts since checking in to Pine View and credits the additional episodes with how hard they’re working. While making a paper mache version of his dead dog, Norman catches his mother’s face in a recycled strip of newspaper. He pieces together enough strips to see the snuggling photo of Norma and Alex at the winter festival with “recently married” in the caption. He calls his mother and Alex answers; Norma lies about why he is there. Silently enraged, he tells his mother that he is coming home. Norman brags to Julian that although he might be crazy, he is smart enough to trick everyone into seeing him as kind and normal.
Dylan walks in on Emma and her dad fighting about her mom. Audrey DeCody’s cell phone is no longer in service and her landlord tells Dylan that she left everything behind 4 months ago. He gives Emma the letter from Audrey. Emma accepts that she does not need a relationship with her mother. (Good thing…)
Rebecca visits Alex at his office to deliver his new joint account checks. When she tells him that she’s returning to Indiana to spend time with her sick mother, he warns her that the DEA might question her leaving town. She thanks him for helping her out and hugs him goodbye.
When Norma shares her dreams of revamping the old house, Alex gives her Bob Paris’ getaway cash and tells her to spend it because she deserves it. Dylan visits Norma and they discuss the letter found in Norman’s room addressed to Emma from her mother. He insinuates that Norman might have something to do with Audrey DeCody’s disappearance and warns her to not let him leave Pine View. Norma twitches, calls him crazy and goes back to frantically sewing.
Norma visits Pine View and discusses her options with Dr. Edwards. When Norman calls his mother out on her secret marriage, she says it was all for the health insurance. She tells him that she thinks it’s best for him to stay, but he bursts into tears and begs to come home, agreeing to stay medicated and receive outpatient therapy. Completely duped, Norma agrees to let him leave Pine View. When Dr. Edwards questions Norman about the discharge, he is also tricked via humility and tears into agreeing a home environment would better serve Norman. Norma returns home to the gift of a big screen TV from Alex and immediately tells him Norman is coming back. Shocked at first, Alex quickly supports Norma’s maternal bond and commits to being a good father figure. Norma and Dr. Edwards share a concerned glance as she and Norman return to the Bates home together.
Opinion: Norman’s new skills of manipulation start to show; he is learning to control those who usually control him; curious to see if Imaginary Norma takes a break now that Norman can stick up for himself in his own way. The shrieky score seemed a little obvious and distracting. Norman’s going back home even though he shouldn’t…I get it, stringed instruments. I get it.
Keeping the Creepy Score: 2 – Norman’s hypnotic visions of his mother having sex with Alex turn the creepy corner when Norma smiles at Norman while mounting her hubby. The scorekeeper is glad they’re all going to be under the same roof together.