Norman Bates is officially cuckoo. His beloved Mom, Norma, her remains preserved thanks to Norman’s taxidermy skills, sits in a darkened room surrounded by flowers, like a shrine to her very existence. Meanwhile, Norman, Manager of the Bates Motel, maintains his conversations with her in his mind, and goes about his daily existence in the belief that she’s still very much alive.
The episode starts with a time jump: Dylan is now married to Emma – her double lung replacement last Season paid off – and they have a young abby, a daughter. Dylan’s Father Caleb (actually Norma’s brother who raped her as a young teenager) calls at the house when Emma’s birthday party is in full swing, but Dylan invites him in, and shows him his daughter. Emma later thanks him for paying for her life saving surgery and then demands that he leaves and never comes back. The horror that Caleb raped Norma hangs over Declan’s life, and she can’t have Caleb around ruining their lives. He agrees and leaves.
The insights into Norman’s psyche this season are very clear, and sharp. The way the big reveals are made to the audience are breath taking. In the opening scene, Norman sits down to a breakfast while Norma fusses over him, bemoaning the fact that she’s stuck in the house, dead, while Norman gets to go the new hardware store in the Village. Of all things, she misses going into the Village. Norman sets off to the Motel and a guest arrives, wanting a room for the afternoon only which sets off Norman’s nerves. He explains that the Motel isn’t that kind of place and the guest pays for one night, and promptly brings his female friend into the room for sex. Norman had checked them into room one so he could spy on them and jerk off. The phone rings suddenly, and its Norma telling him to come to the house before his meal gets cold, and he returns to the house.
There’s a scene where Norman looks through his journal. He’s recording his blackouts and comparing them to days when guests have stayed at the Motel to make sure the wallet he had in his back pocket which belonged to a now deceased guest isn’t all in his mind. Sadly, the wallet belongs to a dead guy who was sent there to murder Norman. As the assailant pulled his gun from his pocket, Norma clubbed him over the head, and then used a knife to voraciously stab him. She puts the body in the freezer then reveals to Norman later how she saved him, and warns him that people are going to come after him.
The kicker this episode is sheriff Romero is in prison serving a sentence for being corrupt.
Just as Norma and Norman are in a boat going to dump the man’s body his phone rings and Norman pulls it from under the plastic shower curtain and answers the phone.
It’s Sheriff Romero checking that Norman’ killer has done the job.
Alex Korev returned to work to find everything had changed since he’d been in prison awaiting trial for assaulting Andrew over a misunderstanding between his then girlfriend Jo and Andrew. Alex now knows Jo is married to an abusive man who she is in hiding from, and that’s the only reason she rejected Alex’s proposal.
This week’s episode recap:
Amelia returned to Meredith’s house but insisted she was just crashing there to avoid her husband. Arizona realised she was attracted to Eliza Minnick, and the two kissed. Bailey came over to Mer’s to make nice. She offered Mer her job back but she declined unless Richard was reinstated, which put Bailey on the spot. Richard came to see Mer to try and convince her to come back to work and that he could take care of his own career but Mer explained that her Mother had instilled to her that Richard came first when it comes to career. She was simply following in her Mother’s footsteps. Being an extraordinary person. However, Richard put her right on that score and insisted Ellis Grey would never have put Richard before her career.
Maggie bonded with Nathan over a case where he opened up a little about his past. There was a moment between them but I think we’ll see the impact of this in next weeks’ episode. My feeling on this is that Maggie still has a crush on Nathan, and he seems to be warming up to the idea of dating her, at least.
PART ONE started with the usual recap: Connor giving Wes CPR and realising he was too late; Wes had been injected with a fatal dose of a drug which killed him. Connor smelt gas and realised the house was going to explode. He ran out of the storm door, just as Laurel opened the door to the basement, and the house exploded. Connor got away in time but Laurel was later dragged out of the burning building by the EMTs.
With Annalise now out on bail, pending a Hearing to determine whether the District Attorney would take her case to trial, time was running out for the Keating Four to come up with a plan to get the charges against Ana dropped. Nate rolled up and played his part in providing Ana with credible evidence which could save her from prison, but she instead questioned his loyalty to her after all her shenanigans. Clearly, he still cared for her. He went to such lengths to prove it by going toe to toe with the D.A. and ended up getting fired, but not before he let the D.A. know that the whole time Nate worked as an investigator for the D.A’s Office he’d collated evidence agains D.A. Denver and his office detailing every corrupt move he’d made. He threatened to go further to prove his point if needed, but the D.A. just fired him and walked away.
As the hour progressed we learnt the Annalise and the D.A. – Denver – had beef going way back. He’d been coming after her for years, but we were never really shown his motives. Ana tries to make a deal – her release in exchange for claiming Wes was mentally unstable (remember the episode where he was held on 24 hour psych eval? came in handy) also made a case that he’d got dark tendencies as a child; first stabbing his own Mother, and later murdering Sam and his own girlfriend; whose body was recently found in the woods. The D.A. isn’t buying it at first but then he succumbs as he knows that the corruption against him would most certainly send him to prison forever, if not worse.
PART TWO was a little more fast paced. Annalise met with Sylvia Mahoney. With Charles now out of prison after the D.A. discovers the evidence putting him in prison (murdering his own Father in cold blood) was fabricated, Annalise begs Sylvia to call a truce. Forgive each other for transgressions and move on with their lives. Sylvia gives Annalise some home truths we never saw coming.
Remember the episode where we thought Wes’s Mom was raped by Wallace Mahoney and he was Wes’s Father – not so. CHARLES, was Wes’s Father. Sylvia explained she didn’t do the DNA test on Wes so who did?
Minor titbits: Asher confessed he loves Michaela. Oliver proposed to Connor. Frank was released as it was now clear that he didn’t murder Wes. He prostrates himself in front of Annalise to beg her to let him help her with whatever she needs. A confused Bonnie watches. Annalise stays silent.
Laurel got it into her head that the only way to make the D.A. drop the charges against Annalise was to kill Charles Mahoney herself. After she perjured herself on the witness stand after it emerged she signed an affidavit stating she falsely claimed to have been kidnapped as a teenager – her Father had conned her into signing the paperwork by claiming it was something to do with a property deal. She signed her life away the moment she put pen to paper. Meanwhile, the D.A. got a visit from Connor who decided to take the immunity deal through guilt in not being able to revive Wes.
Oliver managed to hack the ADA’s home computer after Nate gave Ana the code. He found her phone records which gave them a repeated phone number. It was traced to the D.A. Denver. Asher phones the number. It rings. Michaela phones Connor just as he’s in the DA’s office waiting to sign the immunity papers. A phone rings – Connor goes in Denver’s desk and answers the call – hears Asher on the line. Now the Keating Four know Denver is behind everything. Connor is taken into solitary custody while Denver tries to convince him to sign the deal or Denver will frame him for Wes’s murder; and he produces Wes’s phone.
In flashback, we seen on the night of the fire that Wes was assaulted by an assailant who injected him with a fatal dose of drugs. He was paralysed and crawled on the floor until the assailant suffocated him. He took the body to the basement and cut the gas line, and then sat outside the house in his car to watch the house explode. He saw Connor running from the house before it exploded but he didn’t see Laurel go into the house. The assailant makes a call to Laurel’s Father to tell him its’ done but it got messy.
Laurel’s Father clearly didn’t approve of her relationship with Wes – but he doesn’t know that Laurel’s pregnant. He hired the assailant who turns out to be a family friend of Laurel’s and bumps into her just as she’s about to shoot Charles Mahoney. They embrace and he tells Laurel he’s in the City for work. Laurel introduces Dominic to Asher and Michaela (who has just admitted she loves Asher too) and Charles drives away in a taxi.
Annalise went to an AA meeting and poured her heart out about how she lost her baby in a car accident, and recently lost a student she felt compelled to protect after his Mother was killed; and how she felt close to her student. So close that she saw him as her own son.
April has been asked to fill in for Mer now she’s been suspended. Her first task is to assign a procedure to a resident, who will cover an entire surgery from start to finish. She has to give Richard the news that Dr Warren will be performing the surgery he was expecting to, and he is angry, and asks April to assign it to Dr Bailey instead. April begs, and then he agrees. Everyone can’t believe April agreed to cover Mer’s job, given the reason why Mer was suspended.
Stephanie rolls up for her solo surgery but the patient has just died. Minnick takes her to the Pit so they can find another surgery she can do from start to finish and they find one of Arizona’s paediatric patients. Steph botches the surgery and he dies. [Maybe this is why Stephanie leaves the hospital.]
Jackson corners Richard about April and says they should go to Catherine about it, but Bailey already decided that April would cover Mer, and is backing up Dr Minnick. Jackson can’t believe his Mom is not backing up Richard on this.
April scrubs in on one of Mer’s surgeries and the patient crashes. Now she’s too unstable for the surgery and Maggie takes it out on April, who later tells Maggie she can leave as its her OR.
Bailey decides to observe Warren’s surgery. Richard is annoyed, feels ganged up on. Bailey feels Richard’s wrath about how she brought in Minnick, and it was down to Catherine’s intervention. Warren performs his solo surgery while Bailey and Richard argue about Catherine’s decision to bring in Minnick.
Minnick is challenged by Arizona over surgery on a child, she feels Stephanie isn’t qualified to perform a solo surgery.
Over lunch, they discuss the April situation, and Owen is the peace keeper. Jackson challenges April about covering Mer’s job, she sees it as an opportunity, but Jackson says she chose incorrectly and shouldn’t have taken the job. He says his Mom manipulated the situation so Bailey would choose April, not that April is good enough for the Chief of Surgery position. Catherine later admits it was down to Bailey that she got the job, as Bailey pushed for April to get it.
Arizona tracks down Minnick when she storms off after the patient’s death. Minnick is in the on-call room, crying. Minnick admits that she’s never had a patient die on her table; especially a child. She’s traumatized, and Arizona finds some respect for her, and instead empathises rather than being angry with her for it. Later, she sees Minnick crying her in her car, and goes to her.
April gets the cancer out of Mer’s patient without Maggie’s help. She’s furious. Stephanie runs it by Richard about what she could have done to save the patient who bled out on her table. Richard consoles her, says none of the other surgeons caught the bleeding either, and not to blame herself. Then, he goes with her to tell the parents.
We open with Cyrus arriving at the prison and being booked in for Frankie Vargas’s murder.
Over at OPA, Olivia and Mellie are celebrating her Presidency; dancing to music and drinking red wine. Olivia says until Mellie gets sworn in she’s not actually the next President of the United States. Meanwhile, Huck is busy combing through the Vargas footage. Campaign staffer Meg Mitchell has caught his eye.
Marcus tells the Press about Cyrus’s arrest for Vargas’s assassination, and they ask whether the Death Penalty will be applied. The FBI Director, Ms Webster is in David Rosen’s office when Abby storms in, asking David Rosen, Attorney General, not to go for the Death Penalty. Ms Webster tells Abby she’s not the one who makes that decision and they face off, about how Abby speaks for the President and Death Penalty is off the table under President’s orders.
Cyrus is taken for his exercise, a ‘walk’ in another cell, and sees Tom in the opposite cell. He begs to talk with Tom but the guard spits in Cyrus’s face and warns him to keep his mouth shut otherwise he’ll be moved into gen pop with the nastiest criminals. A prisoner opposite Cyrus tells him how he ate his family, and wants another kill in exchange, he tells Cyrus how to get leverage on the guard.
Abby gets a visit from Elizabeth North, and demands that she tells David that the Death Penalty is off the table. Abby offers her a job if she gives Cyrus a message. Elizabeth goes to visit Cyrus and tells him about the overwhelming, negative Public response to the news he murdered Vargas. She gives him the message about the Death Penalty being off the table. Cyrus tells her Tom is in the same Prison, and can she give Tom a letter for him. She’s not interested at first, but Cyrus practically begs. He says he needs to turn Tom and convince him Cyrus loves him, and it’ll make him recant the case against Cyrus.
OPA establish that Tom rented a car on the election night. OPA try and track his movements to see if he was near Vargas that night.
Huck visits Meg Mitchell at home and installs security locks in her apartment as she’s worried Jenny’s murderer will come after her next. He teaches her self-defence. At OPA, Huck asks everyone who killed Jenny. Everyone realises nobody has been charged with Jenny’s murder. They have to prove Tom blew up Jennifer’s cabin first, to tie him into Vargas’s assassination.
Cyrus leverages inside knowledge on one of the guards in exchange for pen, paper, and better treatment. Later, the guard gives Cyrus what he wants. He writes the letter to Tom and gives it to Elizabeth when she next visits. Later, he gets a visit from Michael who wants a divorce and full custody of their child. He threatened Elizabeth unless she shows him the letter Cyrus wrote to Tom. Michael’s angry.
Fitz is in bed with Ms Webster. They look very cozy as they discuss Cyrus’s case. He’s furious Abby told David to take the Death Penalty off the table, under President’s orders. He tears Abby a new asshole in front of David and FBI Director Ms Webster. Fitz orders Abby to stay away from the case, under President’s orders. Fitz later makes a Press statement that he supports the Death Penalty and it will be applied for Cyrus. Later, the guard lets Cyrus out for some fresh air and the guard lets the other convicts who voted for Vargas beat him up. He ends up in the infirmary.
Cyrus hallucinates that he is sworn in as the next President of the United States but then realises in the oval that it’s actually Mellie who is President. Cyrus is patched up, and makes a call to Olivia to stress that he told Tom not to harm a hair on Frankie Vargas’s head, and that it was all Tom who did this. Tells her to trust her gut, and that she knows Cyrus the best. She says it’s gone to far, and at some point the bill has to be paid. His time is up. Stop being a monster and be a man, a man he can be proud of. He says he’s going to die in there. Olivia says she’ll always be his friend but she will never speak to him again, and hangs up on him.
At breakfast, Cyrus asks the guard for his belt so he can hang himself. The prisoner opposite, Ralph the cannibal, hears the whole conversation. The guard agrees to pin it on a guard he can’t stand Ralph agrees to blame it on the other guard. It’s set for when the guard finishes his shift, and it looks like Cyrus is going to hang himself.
Huck asks Meg if they are more than business clients, and she kisses him. Abby phones him mid-kiss with an update on Tom – he wasn’t anywhere near Frankie Vargas or the election that night, he was 600 miles away. Its confirmed. Further examination of Tom’s bank accounts show he was paid 2 million dollars to confess to the assassination.
OPA realise Cyrus and Tom are innocent.
Cyrus overthrows the guard with Ralph’s help and get his keys. Then, the guard stands and watches as Cyrus gets the inmate to kill Tom with the belt.
The episode started with Annalise returning to her burned out house. She’s in shock that it’s really gone then her phone rings. She meets with Nate at a secluded spot. They talk, but its not like old times. He tells Ana that his signature ended up on the transfer papers for Wes’s body and he’s admits to having been at her house the night of the fire.
In flashback, we see Nate and Frank talking. Wes accuses him of being in on this, and Nate advises him to take the deal otherwise he’ll go down for everything that happened. Nate tells Ana that Wes knew she was looking out for him ever since he was a kid. Wes admits he’s done awful things to her and Nate presses him but Wes tells him to leave.
Nate gets a call from the lead Detective hunting Wes’s whereabouts but Nate lies and says he has no idea. Nate tells Ana they may check his phone and will find out he was at the house. Ana promises him she’ll fix this.
The Keating Four meet at Bonnie’s and Ana tells them she failed, and Wes was offered immunity, and she imagines they’ll offer another one of them an immunity deal as well. Laurel is more concerned about finding who killed Wes, and points out Wes testified against the Mahoney’s the week before he died in the fire and there may be a connection.
Oliver told Connor about the copy of the phone data. Connor challenges him, saying maybe Ana’s the one that killed Wes. Oliver won’t look at the thumb drive, says they’re better off not knowing what was on her phone but he weakens and boots it up. Connor looks relieved.
Bonnie sees Frank, and goes over his case. He’s trying to represent himself in his case. She presses him to re-hire his lawyer as otherwise it looks like Bonnie is colluding with Ana.
Laurel goes into obsession mode and scours the internet for details on the Mahoneys. Then, Ana sends an email – a formal complaint about the District Attorney, demanding a Grand Jury investigation into D.A. Atwood. The Attorney General isn’t interested. Ana threatens her a career but she doesn’t back off.
Bonnie goes to see the D.A. and they stonewall her about Ana’s complaint to the State Department. Threatens to reveal the evidence they have on the students and Ana. Bonnie doesn’t back down. Nate is furious Ana tried to help him by getting the State Department involved. The State Department rejects Annalise’s complaint against the D.A. and threatens Ana with the Death Penalty because she leaked the newspaper article.
Ana goes to see Oliver. She gets Oliver to leak it to the Press that Wes’s body is missing. The D.A. is devastated. Michaela and Asher go to see Laurel and hired a Private Investigator who digs up papers that show a DNA test was done on Wes which shows he was Wallace Mahoney’s son. The Middleton University President calls Ana to congratulate her on being out on bail.
At Bonnie’s, Laurel shows Ana the DNA test results. Ana is horrified and tells them the Mahoneys will hurt them all, and she lost her baby because of them. She says they have to do what it takes to stay safe. Later, Bonnie suggests Laurel have a termination but keep it quiet from Annalise. Bonnie suggests Annalise tell the D.A. that Nate was at the house that night. She’s furious and then asks her if Frank has a lawyer yet.
Asher suggest to Michaela that Connor may be the anonymous source who contacted the Police and alerted them to Annalise’s predicament. Michaela shoots it down as preposterous.
The D.A. offered the Middleton University President immunity in exchange for full custody of her children. Nate meets with Annalise and tells him about the Court hearing. Atwood was suspended by her boss. Nate tells Annalise that Atwood admitted she moved the body. Annalise tells Laurel that Wes’s body was cremated. Laurel says Atwood was working with the Mahoneys. Asher accuses Connor of being the anonymous source. Connor shuts it down, then says Ana’s phone was cleared that night. Bonnie jumps to Ana’s defence, then Connor tells them about the thumb drive.
Oliver discovers Conner did check his voicemail that night. Oliver calls Thomas and he confirms Connor did get the message to come to Ana’s house and Thomas further confirms Connor left hours before the fire started.
In flashback, we see Connor giving Wes CPR – he’s on the basement floor unconscious.