During this week’s episode of Bates Motel, Christine urges Norma to run for a seat on the town council. Dylan learns more about the woman he works for. And Cody and Emma worry about Norman, whose behavior becomes more and more erratic.
A Bad Influence
If Norman is going to lie to his mother, he needs to learn to get rid of any and all evidence. In this particular case, it’s just a beer cap from his liaison with Cody in the woods. On a good day, Norma would flip her top, but she’s out of sorts, evidenced by the fact that she’s not at the stove making Norman a well-balanced breakfast.
Norman tries to brush it off with the “all the kids are doing it” line, but Norma points out that she didn’t raise him to be like other kids. Mission accomplished there, Norma. She questions whether Norman is mature enough to take his upcoming driver’s test. He apologizes, and Norma tells him that she’s trusting him and he cannot keep secrets from her.
Dylan is released from the hospital and picked up by his hottie boss and Zane’s sister, Jodi (Kathleen Robertson). Due to the high-profile circumstances surrounding his injuries, Dylan will be lying low at Jodi’s home. The last thing they need is Romero poking around when he’s already on a tear.
A Parting of the Ways
Norma goes to see Nick Ford. Between Sheriff Romero’s warning and the conveniently-timed death of Councilman Lee Berman, Norma’s having second thoughts about her arrangement with Ford. He points out that their association didn’t seem to bother her when she was reaping the benefits of the environmental impact report. Norma says it’s a bit too coincidental that the man she was calling a d**k a few weeks ago happened to drive off a cliff. Ford asks her if she’s insinuating that he had something to do with Berman’s death, which she denies. Norma simply says she can take things from here.
House of Cards
Christine comes by the motel on a mission: she thinks Norma should run for Berman’s empty council seat. Rough town, the guy isn’t even in the ground yet. Norma would appear to be a longshot candidate given, well, Zach Shelby’s death, Keith Summers death and her arrest as a possible murder suspect. But Christine has some powerful friends including the mayor, who shares her opinion that the council consists of too many local yokels.
Christine considers Norma part of her social circle. She pushes Norma to give Rob, the mayor, a call. All she has to do is drop Christine and her husband Peter’s name and she’s in the door. Christine will also call on her brother George to help Norma prep for the meeting.
Christine swears she’s given up on matchmaking. She says her brother used to be a lawyer and has been active in politics, with good results, in the past.
Cody shows up to drive Norman to build sets and is intercepted by Norma. She informs Cody that she doesn’t want Norman drinking and chalks it up to medical reasons. Nevermind that he’s underage, and they’re tooling around in her car. Norma also informs her son that she will be driving him from here on out. He says she won’t have to because he’ll have his license.
Cody wants to blow off the theater in favor of hitting a local swimming hole. With his mother’s warning not to let Cody lead him astray still ringing in his ears, he says they need to go and do their jobs. Cody thinks he’s joking and completely dismisses his refusal. She also pays no heed to Norma’s warning because the next thing they do is head to her house to pick up some booze. Cody’s dad shows up unexpectedly, and the two hide in a closet.
We all know that stress sends Norman into a tailspin, and this little adventure brings up childhood memories of him and Norma hiding from his drunken, abusive father. He manages to not freak out or try and murder anyone, but the change in his demeanor doesn’t go unnoticed by Cody. She questions how often these episodes are happening. Norman says more lately, but he doesn’t know why.
Talk about awkward run-ins. Emma and Gunner head out for a romantic swim and come across Cody and Norman with their tongues down each other’s throats. Emma and Norman would obviously rather be anywhere else, but their dates don’t pick up on the cues.
The boys use a rope swing to enter the freezing water. Emma, not to be deterred by her physical limitations, decides to go for it as well. Norman and Gunner worry it could be too much, while Cody tells them to stop treating Emma as if she’s made of glass. Predictably, Emma doesn’t resurface, and Norman comes to her rescue. A few tokes on the old oxygen tank and our girl is good as new.
Norman lays into Cody, blaming her for Emma’s mishap. He flips out at Gunner, who tries to intervene on Cody’s behalf as well. Cody leaves, and Norman stays by Emma’s side.
Can I Call You Alex?
Norma seeks some advice from Alex Romero regarding her meeting with the mayor. Not one to mince words, he attempts to dash her political hopes by telling her there’s no chance she’ll get the seat. He says he knows what she’s up against. Romero wishes her luck anyway, and then informs her that at night, when the light’s on, it’s possible to see her in her bedroom through the lace curtains.
Norma and George are reunited for the first time since their lackluster date. We learn that George used to be an idealistic young attorney until his wife pushed him into the more lucrative field of corporate law.
George helps Norma strategize. He tells her that she doesn’t need to prove to anyone that she’s competent, informed or intelligent. He tells her that her je ne sais quoi is “a depth, and a presence and a force about you that’s so engaging … you’ve got to let that show.” He warns her not to get so wrapped up in the logistics and statistics that she leaves herself at home. It’s all about charisma, baby. This might not get her the seat, but it could get George laid.
A New Jobs with Perks
Jodi gives Dylan a little background on the family business, which started out as her dad just growing weed for himself and some buddies. It turned out to be so good that everybody wanted it. Zane’s sister refers to the man as a “botanical artist.” When her parents died, they left her the business, whether she wanted it or not.
She tells Dylan that she should never have put Zane in charge, and she wants Dylan to watch her brother and run things without anyone really knowing that he’s running things.
Later, she crawls into his bed. Maybe this is her idea of a signing bonus. One thing is certain, it’s never a good idea to s**t where you eat.
The Company You Keep
During Norma’s meeting with the mayor, he informs her that in addition to having Christine and Peter’s support, she’s got a fan in Nick Ford. Ford’s endorsement outweighs Norma’s charm or the fact that Christine’s husband plays golf with the mayor. She doesn’t even get a chance to discuss the issues. The mayor tells her that he’s learned all he needs to know by the company she keeps.
Cody comes by to see Emma. She apologizes for encouraging Emma’s risky behavior. She brings up Norman’s tantrum and questions if he’s alright. Like Norma, Emma uses the excuse that he’s sensitive and emotional. After some prodding, Cody tells Emma that she’s seen Norman black out twice. He can talk and move a little, but nobody’s home. Cody sticks to her word by not telling Norma, but she feels somebody needs to know that there could be something seriously wrong with him.
The next morning, Norma finds out she got the seat. She’s still clueless to the fact that the mayor is in Nick Ford’s pocket.
The Blackouts are Out of the Bag
Norma takes Norman for his driving test. While she’s waiting, she receives a call from Emma who informs Norma that Norman’s having blackouts. She spills all the beans: how he admitted to Cody that it’s happened before, how he doesn’t want Norma to know and how Cody’s witnessed several herself.
Realizing that putting Norman behind the wheel is incredibly dangerous, Norma narcs her son out to the driving instructor. Looks like Norman will be hoofin’ it for at least three years. Norman accuses her of trying to sabotage his attempt at independence until she reveals that Cody told Emma.
Norman forces Norma to pull over and starts walking. She questions where he’s going, and he tells her to go home. Exerting what little control he has, he says he’s not a little boy and she can’t keep him locked up. Figuring he’s just blowing off steam, Norma leaves him to his own devices.
He immediately goes to confront Cody and winds up in a physical confrontation with Cody’s father that leaves the man dead.
Norma’s a woman with influence in the community now and has powerful friends of both the legitimate and unsavory variety. Will it be enough for her to get Norman out of this mess?
Bates Motel airs Mondays at 10pm on A&E.
(Image courtesy of A&E)