TV Review: Bates Motel - Season 5: Episode 5 "Dreams Die First"

Google BATES MOTEL and I guarantee most of the news results will revolve around Rihanna's role as the infamous Marion Crane, but she wasn't the only buzzworthy aspect of episode five. Plenty of plot points were revealed both to the audience and characters as we are officially set up for the final five episodes of the last season. 

Norman wakes up to marks on his body, not remembering anything about the night before and his car missing.  Following clues left behind, he finds out Mother was out at a local bar and she is nowhere to be found. When Norman heads back to the bar to pick up the car, the bartender seems to recognize him and seems almost concerned for him. Everyone there knows who he is and turns out he was in attendance as Norma, being the life of the party apparently. Not only that, Mother took to a lover in the car and went on to participate in full on sex. Since this is A&E, we can only see so much and leave the rest to the imagination of what exactly they did together, but this was one of those moments where I wish we could go a bit further in graphic detail. Either way, Norman is mortified and develops more of a self-realization that he might not be able to take care of himself. This is only proven true as he stumbles onto his old psychiatrist who takes enough of a look at Norman to know everything is not okay. Norman gives a dead stare as they converse, even remembering "I see my mother when she isn't there and sometimes I become her." It initially comes off as a possible confession, but Norman quickly dismisses this condition as a thing of the past and lies about being fully recovered.

Dylan and Emma are back on the show as their relationship feels like it needs some re-evaluation as she pushes him to reach out to Norma (remember, they have no idea she is dead), but her persistence is pissing him off. He finally confesses to her his suspicions about Norman's past and the theory that he may have killed Emma's mom. These revelations lead her to become more curious as to what's going on at the motel and her search engine results expose a news article telling of Norma's apparent suicide. Cue the dramatic music as these two are finally going to get involved int he meat of the central storyline finally as next week promises to have Dylan confront Norman about his secrets.

Speaking of secrets, Norman tells Madeline of her husband's infidelity and she understandably flips out. Norman has been spending quite a bit of time with her and has been hiding this while sharing some special moments. Sam's lady on the side is finally given face time and we are finally introduced to the BATES MOTEL version of Marion Crane, played by pop star Rihanna.

Fans of PSYCHO had to have gone ape shit when "Dreams Die First" recreated some of PSYCHO's famous scenes, like Marion pleading with Sam to run off with her and say goodbye to any obligations. One major difference here though is that Marion is unaware of Madeline. She thinks Sam can't run off with her due to monetary debts and lives in a small apartment back in White Pine Bay. I'm sure this is done to add more sympathy for her character and possibly for Norman to think twice about her as she is just as much of a victim as Madeline. Her dedication to making this relationship work gets the best of her as she steals $400,000 from her notary job where she is underappreciated and drives off to White Pine Bay.

It's hard to provide a criticism of this version of Marion as she wasn't given too much to work with during the episode except to recreate some familiar moments. However, this episode ends with her pulling into the Bates Motel, but this doesn't seem like it's going to be her last night...yet. Previews for next week's episode show off an angry Marion as she might just find out about Sam's married life and busts out his windows. I hope Rihanna is given more to play with as BATES MOTEL has done a terrific job at becoming its own entity and her role could add plenty of flavor to an already established series.

Jovy Skol