Hi-Def Frightfest for Hitchcock Buffs

Alfred Hitchcock fans can look forward to a flurry of HD movies and TV series linked to his legacy.

Expect the Psycho spin-off, Bates Motel, which launched this week to top ratings in the US, to screen on TV3 while due on Blu-ray are the movies Hitchcock in June and the 1954 Rear Window and a 50th anniversary edition of The Birds on May 1.

Arguably the most anticipated is Bates Motel, a modern prequel to 1962’s Psycho that backgrounds the relationship between spooky motelier Norman Bates (Freddie Highmore) and his mother, Norma (Vera Farmiga).

TV3 expects to secure the series through its output deal with NBC Universal, and hopefully won’t offload the cable drama to sister SD channel Four, as it did with American Horror Story.

The US ratings bode well for TV3 to take a punt on the show, with the premiere drawing A&E a record number of the demographics TV3 most covets, 25-54 and 18-49 year-olds.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, “The original scripted drama had an especially promising start with adults 25-54 and adults 18-49, pulling 1.6 million viewers in both measures.

“Across multiple broadcasts, Bates Motel brought in 4.6 million total viewers, including 2.5 million adults 25-54 and 2.4 million adults 18-49.”

“Those results make the new series the most watched original drama in the key demos in the network’s history,” Deadline reports.

Reviews also have been strong. Said THR: “Expect a slow(ish) rollout for Bates Motel, as the first couple of episodes establish character and location, before things take an uptick during episode three.

“But there’s more than enough intrigue and entertainment–on top of Farmiga’s outstanding turn–to keep viewers wanting more of this new-style nonhomage to Psycho.”

The Los Angeles Times dubbed it “moody, twisty, creepy and gloriously insane” and TV Guide “curiously compelling“.

But Slant magazine’s review was a shocker: “Greater offenses have been committed in the name of Psycho, such as the regrettable Psycho III, but this series might be less forgivable for the egregiously pandering waste of talent and potential on display.”

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3 Responses to “Hi-Def Frightfest for Hitchcock Buffs”

  1. Bates Motel sounds interesting, just hope it gets the ratings here … Must be SO annoying for TV3 when they screen top TV shows only to be ignored by people who prefer watching crappy TV shows 🙁

  2. Bah, another prequel that no one wanted. Everyone knows Norman’s history.
    Seen hitchcock and while it was better than the earlier TV film The Girl, it comes across as too much of a feelgood piece to patch up Hitch’s sordid reputation.

  3. I am looking forward to watching Bates Motel also. Hopefully it will be in HD on TV3.

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