‘Bates Motel’ Season 2 Interview: Freddie Highmore and Executive Producer Carlton Cuse on the Finale, Norman’s Evolution and More

Bates Motel Season 2 Episode 10 The Immutable Truth (2)

Bates Motel concludes its intense second season tonight, Monday, May 5th at 10/9c on A&E. Before we find out just how much Norman has discovered about himself post-kidnapping, how that pesky drug war plays out and if Norma and Norman’s relationship can ever be the same, TV Equals joined in a conference call with series star Freddie Highmore and executive producer Carlton Cuse for some last minute scoop. The duo teased the finale, discussed setting an end date for the suspenseful series and much more. Check out the highlights from the call below.

Why Cuse Thinks The Finale Is Bates Motel’s Best Episode So Far

Cuse has strong feelings about the season two finale: primarily, that it is the best episode the series has done to date. Season two has steadily ramped up the action as it progressed, culminating in a penultimate episode that left Norman kidnapped and alone with his thoughts. The fall-out from his experience will play out tonight, and viewers will finally understand what happened to Ms. Watson.

“I personally think that the season finale is better because it moves the overall narrative a big step forward and, I don’t want to spoil that too much, but I think that it’s pretty evident as we’ve moved downstream here that there’s – there are these really significant looming questions,” said Cuse. “One is, you know, what is Norman’s ultimate culpability in the murder of Ms. Watson and secondly how aware is Norman of what it is that he has done or is capable of doing.”

Highmore and Cuse also teased a shift in Norma and Norman’s relationship, a twist between Emma and Norman and whether or not Dylan will be there for his brother at a crucial moment.

On The Season’s Theme

Cuse stated that season two’s overarching theme was “who am I?” and we saw Norma, Norman and Dylan face that central question in their own ways. Norma was given the chance to have the life she wanted, but struggled with whether or not she could be that person. Dylan discovered the truth about his parentage and became entrenched in the drug war despite never wanting anything more than a job, and Norman began to realize his true nature, even as Norma fought to hide it from him.

The finale sets a stage where Norman is in a place where his reality and his mother’s version of reality are contradicting each other. The result will be growing tension between the mother and son. “Norma and Norman always seem to get over whatever challenges they’ve had previously up until now,” Highmore teased. “And I think that with the tenth (episode) it is inconclusive as to whether that bond has been broken, and whether Norma and Norman can kind of continue along the path that they were going before or whether they can’t ignore such key facts about each other any longer.”

Cuse added, “Norma and Norman’s relationship is at the very heart of the show and so I don’t think that will ever will change. That’s what makes the show wonderful is this incredible dynamic that exists between these two characters as portrayed by these two actors. The nature of that relationship, however, will evolve over time and I think, you know, what’s really interesting is that Norman is going from being sort of a boy to being a man, that’s part of his journey over the course of the show.”

Is The End Nigh For Bates Motel?

The series has been renewed for a third season, which Cuse and his writing partner Kerry Ehrin are already busy plotting out, but Cuse revealed he is preparing to discuss an end date for the series with A&E Networks and decide how many more seasons they need to play out the story.

“It’s definitely a show that has a beginning, middle and end and I think we’re kind of getting to the point where we need to define that with the studio and the network and figure out exactly how many more total episode we’re going to do,” Cuse said. “Because we do know where we’re going to end.”

Is that ending found in the original Psycho film? Not exactly. As Highmore put it, the series is about Norman ultimately “going psycho,” but where the series will end up is not necessarily where the film ended up.

“We do foresee that there are some bad things that loom ahead for Norma and Norman but I think it would be – I think it would actually rob the audience of the enjoyment of the journey to be too specific about how we’re going to play that out,” Cuse said. “I mean certainly we think that a literal interpretation of the events of the movie would not be fully satisfying.”

Bates Motel Season 2 Episode 10 The Immutable Truth (3)

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