Bates Motel (Season 1) – Review

It’s one of the most iconic horror films in history, with the famous shower scene that made men and women the world over lock their bathroom doors when showering, specially in motels. Now Alfred Hitchcock‘s horror masterpiece, Psycho, has been adapted into a hit television show, centering on the young life of Norman Bates before Marion Crane ever checked in.

Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore star in A&E’s new horror series, Bates Motel.

The first series of Bates Motel, which is currently available on Netflix in the UK, follows mother and son, Norma and Norman Bates (played by Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore), who, reeling from the loss of Norman’s father, move to a sleepy Oregon town to start a new life, and purchase what soon becomes the infamous Bates Motel.

Set in the present day, Bates Motel follows Norman in his teenage years as his fragile psychological state soon begins to unravel in a series of murders as the young teenager battles the desire to live a normal life with a mother hellbent on keeping to herself forever. One of the key back stories of Hitchcock‘s 1960’s Oscar-winning film is the relationship between Norman Bates and his mother Norma, and how they became the infamous serial killing partnership we see in Psycho.

Bates Motel Episode 1 sees Norma and Norman move to the infamous Bates Motel.

It’s certainly a tall order to take one of the most loved horror classics and turn it into a hit television series, but it seems NBC Universal and A&E has managed exactly that, with reviews of the 10 episode series praising the remake for it’s gritty, eye-opening look at the well known characters.

Vera Farmiga (Source Code [2011], The Departed [2006]) and Freddie Highmore (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory [2005], August Rush [2007]) are truly a formidable partnership who really bring the intricate and unnerving relationship of this murderous mother and son to life in a whole new way. Supported by an outstanding cast, including Max Thieriot (House at the End of the Street [2012]), Nicola Peltz (Transformers: Age of Extinction [2014]), and Nestor Carbonell (The Dark Knight[2008]), Bates Motel sets out to show us the dark, sinister, and murderous side of America’s most famous motel.

Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore star in Bates Motel (TV, 2013- ).

The first series of Bates Motel can be seen in the UK on Blu-Ray, DVD, and Netflix, while series two, which has just finished it’s run in the US on A&E will be available on Netflix in the coming months. For those who can’t wait that long, Season 2 is released on Blu-Ray and DVD on October 13th 2014, you can pre-order it now via Amazon.

Who’s in it?

Vera Farmiga as Norma Bates