With the season four finale of A&E's Bates Motel, the show officially entered PSYCHO territory, providing the set-up for Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) to be running the titular business himself while keeping the corpse of his mother Norma (Vera Farmiga) in the house behind the motel. This was a turn of events that I was not expecting. I figured the PSYCHO lead-in would come in the final episode of the series, not in the finale of the penultimate season.
Although it has been said that Bates Motel's fifth and final season will not be telling the PSYCHO story as we know it, there are going to be some familiar elements in there, including the presence of Rihanna as a "reimagined and contemporary" version of famous shower-taker Marion Crane.
It has been announced that the season five premiere of Bates Motel will air on A&E on Monday, February 20 at 10pm, and now a synopsis has been released to give us an idea of what we can expect to see when the show returns:
This contemporary prequel to the genre-defining film Psycho has provided fans with an intimate look into the unraveling of Norman Bates’ psyche throughout his teenage years. Fans watched as Norman’s dangerous transformation came full circle when he methodically murdered his beloved mother, Norma, in the final gut-wrenching episodes of season four. Season five of “Bates Motel” picks up almost two years later and finds Norman (Freddie Highmore), a grown man now, living a double life. Publicly he’s a happy and well-adjusted member of the White Pine Bay community, but at home Norman struggles; his violent blackouts continue to increase as ‘Mother’ (Vera Farmiga) threatens to take over his mind completely. Meanwhile, Dylan Massett (Max Thierot) and Emma Decody (Olivia Cooke), since leaving White Pine Bay, have been living their lives blissfully unaware of Norma’s death and Norman’s full on descent into psychosis. Unfortunately, for them, they will soon find themselves drawn back into Norman’s insanity, while a vengeful Alex Romero (Nestor Carbonell), who is currently incarcerated for a perjury, hungers for a chance to destroy his stepson and avenge the murder of his one true love, Norma Bates.
New faces find their way to the Bates Motel this season to further complicate Norman’s life and threaten to unearth his dark secrets. Viewers will finally meet the iconic Marion Crane played by Rihanna. In addition, a new couple in town, Madeleine Loomis, played by Isabelle McNally (“House of Cards”) and her husband Sam Loomis, played by Austin Nichols (“The Walking Dead,” “Ray Donovan”), as well as Sheriff Dana Greene, played by Brooke Smith (“Grey’s Anatomy,” “Ray Donovan”) become entangled in Norman’s life causing a chain of events that could blow the lid off Norman’s secret life. Lastly, fans will be greeted by familiar faces when Caleb Calhoun (Kenny Johnson) and Chick Hogan (Ryan Hurst) return with agendas of their own.
There's still more than a month to wait before the season premiere, so to help us pass the time A&E has provided a three minute promo that allows us to check in on Norman and see what he's been up to since we last saw him.