‘Bates’ stars discuss third season

Vera Farmiga and Freddie Highmore star as Norma and Norman Bates in A&E’s “Bates Motel.”

Audiences can anticipate more twisted plot lines and exhilarating episodes in the third season of “Bates Motel,” the A&E prequel series to “Psycho.”

In a conference call, WSN spoke with Vera Farmiga, who plays protagonist Norma Bates, Kerry Ehrin, the co-creator and executive producer, and Carlton Cuse, one of the show’s writers.

During the interview, all three discussed what to expect this season and the new aspects of the show. Cuse spoke about how the characters progress toward the eventual outcome of “Bates Motel.”

“This season, Norman will slide more significantly into that character of his mother,” Cuse said. “He becomes less able to modulate or less conscious of his decline. Because of that, there are some serious consequences in his relationship with his mother. We explore that in a lot of different ways, and that’s really the journey of this season.”

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Elaborating on the growth and difference in her character this season, Farmiga explained that Norma Bates, Norman’s mother, is more protective than ever.

“Norma is more tentative, more aware toward Norman’s ability,” Farmiga said. “At the beginning of this season, you’ll see Norma plays the cards closer to her chest.”

While Farmiga said Norma, a single mother, shows a more protective side toward her son this season, she hinted that her character might show some vulnerability too.

“Norma needs a man to trust,” Farmiga said. “There’s a couple of big potentials this year. May or may not be talking capital R romantic.”

Ehrin also spoke about character development, predominately relating to Norma.

“Norma is in a stronger and more desperate place,” Ehrin said. “She turns to Dylan more and you’ll see how Norman grows jealous of that.”

Dylan Massett (Max Thieriot) is Norma’s son from a marriage with her ex-husband John Massett. Norman’s father is Norma’s late husband Sam Bates.

In addition to the electrifying journey of the new season, “Bates Motel” fans will be able to watch new characters and guest stars. Kenny Johnson continues as a recurring cast member Caleb Calhoun, Norma Bates’ brother and the biological father of her son, Dylan Massett. John raised Dylan as his own, unaware that Caleb was the biological father.

“It’s an incredibly loaded situation,” Cuse said. “You’ll see he’s not just a bad guy.”

Farmiga explained how the show’s cast and crew are able to sustain the allure and freshness of “Bates Motel.”

“Carlton and Kerry just write things off the freaking Richter scale,” Farmiga said. “You’ll see them just kill it this year. The actors are incredibly nuanced.”

A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, March 11 print edition. Email Kat Fadrilan at [email protected]

 

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