A&E's thriller drama Bates Motel concluded its five-year journey with two major deaths and a happy ending (at least from Norman's point of view). Norman was forced out of his delusion and in the heartbreaking finale, Dylan killed his younger brother, freeing him from the pain of the real world.
Freddie Highmore, who plays the twisted character in the show, says Norman was completely delusional in the series finale and his death at his brother Dylan's hand was a happy ending for him. "It's a Norman that's gone by the very end. He knows deep down that there's nothing else, that it's either this or nothing, which has a romantic quality to it."
"Episode 10 is Norman at his most deluded," he told Entertainment Weekly. In the episode titled The Cord, Norma's husband Romero forces Norman to go to the place where his mother's decomposed body is hidden. Upon arriving at the secret spot, Romero too acts insanely and is soon killed by Highmore's character.
However, Norman pretends as if nothing has happened and takes his mother's body back to his creepy house. He later calls Dylan for a family dinner. His elder brother arrives at Bates Motel, even though he knows Norman's fragile psychological condition.
The dinner does not go as planned. Dylan shakes Norman out of his dream world and forces him to return to the real world where their mother has been dead for months. "Well, if you believe hard enough, then you can make it that way," says Norman. A screaming Dylan explains to Norman that their "mum" is dead and asks him to stop referring to her as "the Mother".
"This is how it ends, isn't it?" Norman says as he picks up a knife to attack Dylan but is ultimately shot to death by his brother. Heartbroken at having killed his little brother, Dylan cradles him in his arms and weeps.
In his dying moments, Norman sees himself running towards his beloved mother and reuniting with her with a loving hug. Highmore thinks the final scene is a valid conclusion to Norma and Norman's mysterious love story.
"Norman sees that he's never going to have what he dreams about, and so it's basically asking Dylan to kill him and to take him out of this world. And when he ultimately does so, whether it's his choice or not, Norman ultimately is grateful for it and is happily reunited with his mother. So there is hope. There is a happiness to it. But it felt like that's how it had to end. It was ultimately this love story between Norman and Norma, and the only real end that it could have was that they'd be reunited and back together again."