In the lead-up to Mother’s Day, Aaron Yap collates the best moments of his favourite TV Mum, Norma Bates of Bates Motel.
Unless you’re totally fine with showing your mum a modern Gothic soap with Oedipus complex themes, Bates Motel wouldn’t be my first recommendation to binge over tea and cake on Mother’s Day. But the show – for all its creepy, incestuous overtones and overwrought, trashy melodrama – can be appreciated as a galvanising, visceral portrait of motherhood. There’s a little Norma Bates in all our mothers.
I haven’t been shy about my affection for Vera Farmiga’s astounding, richly layered portrayal of Norma, a character previously known to most people sans flesh and blood.
I still stand by the performance as “the most entertaining, if not the best, by an actress currently on TV”.