Highmore, Farmiga and Cuse were at the network's TCA Winter Press Tour panel to talk about the upcoming series, along with cast members Olivia Cooke, Nicola Peltz and Max Thieriot and executive producer Kerry Ehrin. After joking that "Bates Motel" was "going to be cryptic" like "Lost," Cuse admitted that "there’s a story here that has a beginning, middle, and end" -- an end that, one would presume, everyone's well familiar with.
Farmiga pointed out that we're told very little about her character in Hitchcock's film, and it comes "through Norman’s warped psyche -- we have preconceived notions of who Norma may have been based on that last image in 'Psycho.'" She was drawn to Norma because "she was just such a beautiful portrait of valiant maternity to me... she’s as strong and tall as an oak and as fragile as a butterfly and everything in between that I admire in female characters that I come across, which is resilience and passion and intellect. And, at the same time, she’s an absolute train wreck and a magnet." Highmore added that the awareness of his fate offers an "argument between nature versus nurture. Is he who he is and will he always become the person that he will become, or is it because they move to this dodgy town and there’s a sort of weird, certainly close, intimate relationship between Norma and Norman."
Cuse stressed that Norma is as central to the story as Norman. "Her unpredictability and Norman’s unpredictability is really engaging. You’re never quite sure what they’re going to do and what’s going to happen. You’re not quite sure where they are in the spectrum of sanity. And that was what was engaging for us as storytellers." "Bates Motel" premieres Monday, March 18th at 10pm.