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Shower Up! – A&E PSYCHO Series BATES MOTEL Announced
It seems like A&E is eager to get in on the action as far as cable-TV crime drama is concerned. If AMC, TNT and, hell, Lifetime can do, then why shouldn’t they? So without even screening a pilot episode, A&E bought into an untested crime series, ordering a full-season, 10-episode run.
And I, for one, don’t blame them. I’d have done the same thing.
The prospective series is one of those shining collisions of commercial fortune and artistic goldmine. It’s not just the same-crap-only-a-bit-different that American audiences adore so well – it’s damn good crap this time. It’s also going to slice under the skin of a favorite work of mine.
They’re making a 10-episode drama about the Bates Motel, Norman and Norma, his mother, spotlighted as the central characters. Be still, my mummified heart.
This isn’t just an exciting prospect because it’ll be an intimate look at one of the screen’s most famous serial killers. It’ll be compelling because the most fascinating aspect of the Psycho story is one that isn’t introduced til the final scenes of the film and so remains unexplored: Just how did Norman get so twisted, raised in his mother’s clutches?
Word on the Bates Motel TV series has it that this question will be the core narrative. At a glance, and taking the Norma-Norman conflict as the primary storyline, we can assume that Norman will be the pitiful protagonist. Whether he’s already taken up a blade to pay forward the torment his mother inflicts on him remains to be seen.
Maybe it’s a pipe dream that mass-media would stray so far from the keystone of such a famous property, but I’d enjoy Norman portrayed as a man trying to escape his mother, rather than an obvious maniac in the offing. Seeing his struggles with the foreknowledge that he’ll ultimately fail is more exciting than watching a succession of victims struggle against him.
Other characters will surely fill out the vacancies in the Bates Motel, but no clue yet as to who’s booked a reservation. We do know that the script talent will come from Carlton Cuse, Lost mainstay and hot Hollywood commodity, and Kerry Ehrin, Friday Night Lights writer. Those aren’t solid-gold credentials, but they are solid enough. Considering Lost survived on an intoxicating balance of character and enigma, Cuse’s talents are especially suited to illustrating the Bates Motel.
Stay tuned to the Complex for more as this develops.