Bates Motel, the modern day prequel story to Alfred Hitchcock’s classic thriller “Psycho,” started with graphic violence, a rape scene, and incestuous undertones. As the show nears the end of the first season, it hasn’t stopped pushing the boundaries of its TV-14 rating.
In the most overtly incestuous display so far in the show, Norman Bates shared his bed with his mother. That’s right; a 17-year-old boy shared his twin bed with his mother Norma Bates.
After Norma finds the stitched up dead body of Sheriff Shelby in her bed, she approaches Norman at bedtime and asks if she can sleep in his room tonight. The prospect of sleeping alone in her room still scares her.
Norman, naturally, agrees and offers to sleep on the floor, but his mother won’t have it. She insists that there’s room for both of them, so Norman dumbly complies. He seems uncomfortable at first, but his mother starts cuddling with him, throwing her arm across him and resting her head on his shoulder as if he were a lover. She reminisces about the times he used to have slumber parties and watch movies in her room as they fall asleep.
Newsflash for you Norma: you’re son isn’t in grade school any more. Both of you are plenty old enough to sleep by yourselves. At least respect your son’s chivalry enough to let him sleep on the floor. At this point in the show, he’s confused enough about girls as it is.
Nothing, presumably, happens beyond that, but the whole scene is wrong and uncomfortable, especially in the wake of Norma’s affair with Sheriff Shelby earlier in the show and Norman’s one-night stand with Bradley, a girl at his high school. The whole scene is hardly appropriate for viewers as young as 14, which the show’s TV-14 rating should allow for.