Richard Harland Smith writes:
Some day someone will write a book- and maybe it’ll be me – placing Marion Crane up there with Jay Gatsby and Tom Joad and Johnny Tremain in the pantheon of great American characters. She’s not only one of us, she’s the missing link between us and Norman Bates. She shows us how you get from here to there. Sadly, tragically, operatically, she dies at the moment she has decided to turn back, to embrace light, to do the right thing. I’ve always imagined, as I’ve rerun the shower scene in my head (and I do that a lot), that once Marion gets over the shock of being ambushed at her most vulnerable (by an attacker she can barely see through the glare of the bathroom light and the veil of shower spray) her reactions are less about terror than about panic and frustration at the bad timing.