Julia Rosén Staff Writer
On March 18, the highly anticipated series Bates Motel had its premiere on the A&E Tele- vision Network. The show is inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 movie Psycho, which was inspired by the novel by Robert Bloch. However, the series, which skipped the initial pilot stage and had 10 episodes ordered, is a re-imagination and not a continuation of the franchise.
The series focuses on Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his twisted relation- ship with his mother, Norma Bates (Vera Farmiga), serving as a prequel to Hitchcock’s classic. It begins with the death of Norman’s dad, which results in the family’s move to Oregon in hopes of starting a new life. Norma buys an old Victorian house that had fore- closed and comes with a motel and so the twisted and mysterious story begins.
Although we are familiar with Norman (originally played by Anthony Perkins) and his escapades from Psycho, Psycho 2 and Psycho 3, this is the first time we are in- troduced to his mother, Norma (originally played by Olivia Hussey), alive. The made for television movie, Psycho IV: The Beginning, written by original Psycho screenwriter Jo- seph Stefano, was the first undead introduc- tion to her. The film served as both the third sequel and a prequel to the series, ignoring the 1987 network pilot also named Bates Motel.
Even though Bates Motel has the foun- dation to be a great series, with both a good plot and interesting characters, it fails to impress. It all seems very stiff and predictable. The characters are not believable and after the first episode, I did not need to continue watching. The only things that were interesting are that the production uses the same set and that Norman was watching the original movie in the beginning as a tribute.
Bates Motel airs Monday nights at 10 p.m. on A&E.