Year of the Norma/Norman Bates Mother/Son Dynamic?

Is this the year of the Norma/Norman Bates mother/(killer) son dysfunctional relationship dynamic on TV?

Norman & Norma Bates of Bates Motel

No seriously, we have the actual Norma & Norman Bates of Bates Motel, with Norma having to come to terms with her sons psychological illness and issues getting worse and worse; we have Oswald Cobblepott & his mother, Gertrud Kapelput that have a weird connection all their own going on; and then there’s psychotic, copy-cat clown, serial killer, Dandy Mott, and his mother Gloria in this season (four) of American Horror Story: Freak show.

Dandy & Gloria Mott of season 4 of American Horror Story: Freak show

What do these mothers & sons all have in common? Well…the sons are all obviously killers; their mothers know this…or will soon find out…they’re unabashedly devoted to their boys, yet they haven’t a clue how to properly deal with their sons descent into madness….

But watch out: These overprotective mothers will do whatever it takes to make sure their boys are safe from harm; even if that means hiding the bodies for them, and crossing a few moral lines themselves along the way.

Oswald Cobblepott, & his mother, Gertrud Kapelput of Gotham

Gertrud is….pretty convinced her Oswald has run off with some lady friend. Not sure where she gets that idea…But nonetheless there’s a few boundaries she needs to abide by:

First rule: Let your son take his bath. Alone. Capiche? …All kinds of awkward here. He’s had a rough day dealing with all kinds of pre-Batman criminal mob stuff. I think he can sponge bathe himself.

Second: I’m going to feel very sorry for the poor unfortunate lady soul that may date Oswald in the future. …Both because he’s Oswald Cobblepott and, of course, Gertrud. Nah. I joke. No! Really! 😉 Kudos to whomever dates Robin Lord Taylor’s Oswald. He’s a keeper.

OswladBath

Oh hell…lets be real: These mothers are facing their own journey and descent into madness.

Exhibit A:

PartiesHorrorAHS

 Yeah, Gloria….where he devours them into that void of a mouth, behind that faux DCnu Joker mask.

In spite of these mama’s over-protective killer instincts…the monsters their sons have become reflect a really nasty reality we face today: Enabling undesirable, unacceptable, and often abhorrent behaviors in people in order to maintain the status quo; particularly at any costs, and especially if said person has a reputation to maintain.

It’s much worse when the killer is rife with privileges, which include class, gender, and race–specifically the white, rich, males who have some sort of societal and class protection. Dandy Mott is a perfect example of someone whose privilege and stunted emotions run unchecked. Sheltered from the world and spoiled rotten by his mother hasn’t helped his psych any either. He’s come to embrace his inner emptiness and darkness, as well as pulling inspiration from the now deceased, tortured soul, Twisty the clown (pictured above).

 

DandyMott

Dandy Mott’s smashing clown costume

Dandy isn’t afraid to show his mother whom he truly and fully is. This puts Gloria in a very tight spot. Though…it’s hard to empathize someone who enables such warped behavior….especially one that’s admitted to having been at least aware of the inbreeding that’s been going on in the Mott family.  It’ll be interesting to see what Gloria ends up doing in the midst of Dandy’s knife happy shenanigans…

Norman

Same could be said for Norma Bates. In that corrupt, quiet, coastal Oregon town there’s only so many places one can hide a body. Norman is still a teenager, and has killed two people or more already….though his diagnosis and motivation isn’t necessarily caused by malice or sociopathy…that we know of. Norman’s blackouts are still something to be explored. He may just have a bad case of mental illness…We’ll have to wait and see. We know where his story goes…but it’s the mechanics of his mental illness we need to understand.

Either way…It’ll be interesting to see how far these mothers are willing to be pushed, both by themselves and by their sons’ madness.

GloriaDandy

Gloria, haven’t we seen you at this angle before? Oh! Wait!

SixFtUnder

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