Bates Motel Wiki
Bates Motel Wiki

The way I see it, the Bates Motel is a family business, and... and I feel like I’ve been part of the family in some ways, but in a lot of other ways, I don’t. I feel excluded.

–Emma to Norma, The Box

Emma Decody is a quirky, pretty and intelligent girl who has cystic fibrosis and an “old soul”. She quickly developed feelings for Norman Bates, and she was always showing up on his doorstep.  As of the final season she is married to his half-brother Dylan Massett, with whom she has a daughter.



Emma has cystic fibrosis, a genetic disorder, so she's forced to bring an oxygen tank with her wherever she goes. Her life expectancy is 27 years, but she was on a waiting list until Dylan Massett secured the money needed for a transplant.

Emma formerly lived above an antique shop that her father, Will Decody, ran. They migrated to White Pine Bay, Oregon from Manchester, UK after her father quit his job as a professor to focus on taking care of her.

Season 1

Emma helped Norman when she found him vomiting at school, and she quickly developed feelings for him. (First You Dream, Then You Die)


While Emma and Norman worked on a school project together, she found Jiao's diary in his room. She later did some research and found one of the locations depicted in the diary, and as they agreed to investigate, Emma kissed Norman. The two later discovered a large marijuana field (the one where Dylan Massett later works at), and they were chased away by two armed guards. (Nice Town You Picked, Norma...)

In school the next day, Emma confessed to Norman that she used the diary just to spend time with him. She eventually convinced him to continue the investigation, now knowing that everything in the diary was true. They searched room 4 of the motel, where Norman had first recovered the diary, and they found "Jiao" written on the sink. Emma wanted to go to the police with the information they had, but Norman strictly told her not to (because he and Norma Bates were presently under investigation). (What's Wrong With Norman)

Norman told Emma that he and Bradley Martin are together, based on them sleeping together. Emma said that only means they had a hookup, but Norman insisted it meant more. He also told Emma that he found Jiao in Deputy Zack Shelby's basement, but she is no longer there. Norman and Emma figured out that Shelby and Keith Summers were in the sex slavery business together, so they searched Summers' boat for Jiao. They found her locked up and brought her back to the motel, where they convinced Norma of Shelby's involvement. (Ocean View)

Emma bonded with Norma, who eventually hired her to work at the motel. (The Man in Number 9)

At school, Emma overheard Bradley's friends talk about how Norman had no chance with Bradley, so Emma stuck up for Norman and revealed that he and Bradley slept together. This caused the "rumor" to spread at school. (A Boy and His Dog)


Dylan brought his crew to stay at the motel, when Gunner gave Emma a marijuana cupcake. She eventually gave into temptation and ate it. (Underwater)

Norman saw Emma looking forlornly at the poster for the winter dance at school and asked her if she'd want to go with him as friends, and she accepted; however, at the dance Norman continuously eyed Bradley, causing Emma to leave in tears. (Midnight)

Season 2

Emma organized a beach memorial for Bradley's death (which was faked). At the memorial, she got drunk and asked Gunner to make "bad choices" with her. (Caleb)

The next morning, Emma woke up in Gunner's room at the motel. Not knowing whether they had sex the previous night, Emma tried to avoid him for the rest of the day. They eventually met, when Gunner explained he only put her in the motel room to sleep after she threw up. (Check-Out)

Emma and Gunner took a walk on the beach, and they kissed. That night, they slept together at the motel (which was Emma's first time). (The Escape Artist)


Emma and Gunner encountered Norman and Cody Brennen at the beach. The four of them went swimming, and Emma copied the others by swinging into the water on a rope. She had to disconnect from her oxygen tank and ended up almost drowning. Norman helped her and subsequently yelled at Cody for making Emma think it was a good idea. Cody later apologized to Emma, when she told her that Norman has been experiencing blackouts; Emma, in turn, called Norma and informed her of this. (Plunge)

Emma offered Norma to stay with her at the local jail (where Norman was taken in for questioning about Jimmy Brennen's death) for support, but Norma sent her to take care of the motel. That night, Emma tried to persuade Dylan to support his mother and brother, but Dylan refused, angering Emma. The next morning, she spoke to Norman after he was released, when he thanked her for "believing" in him. (Presumed Innocent)

Feeling like Norma and Norman have been ignoring her, Emma politely gave Norma her two week notice for working at the motel. (The Box)

Norman tells Emma how Dylan was a child of rape. Emma pities Norma and Norman hopes that she will think about staying and working at the motel. (The Immutable Truth)

Season 3

Emma notifies Norman that her health has deteriorated which in turn affects Norman, they both agree to get homeschooling together and as Norman stated earlier that the only reason why he liked school was because of her so it will be great if she studied with him. Norman eventually asks Emma out and she assumes that the only reason why he is, is because she is dying. However, Norman states that it is not the reason that she is dying but it is about time they become a couple. Emma agrees with a hug and he kisses her on the side of her neck whilst embracing her and stares into space with a deep, dark, glare. (A Death in the Family)

Emma spoke with Norman about intercourse, which made him uncomfortable. She later joined Norma in investigating Annika Johnson's motel room for clues as to Annika's whereabouts. (The Arcanum Club)

Emma tried to seduce Norman by wearing a sexy dress while they studied together. She later drove a car full of pot to Dylan after a woman left it at the motel for him. While there, she saw Gunner and met Caleb. Dylan made her promise not to tell Norma that she had met Caleb. Emma later spoke to Norman about what he felt was Norma's distrust of him, and was upset when Norman furiously stormed away from her. (Persuasion)

While she and Norman studied together, Norma entered the room and Norman kissed Emma to provoke a reaction from his mother. He and Emma arranged to go on a picnic together and when he told Norma she warned him that he could not have sex with Emma. He and Emma went on the picnic in the woods and found a cabin. They lay down by the fireplace and kissed, but Norman stopped before they could go further, saying his mother had warned him about having sex with her. Angry, Emma stormed off. (Unbreak-Able)

She stayed with Norman while Norma went out and told him he had blacked out the previous night. When Dylan returned home and Norman told him he had revealed to Norma the truth about Caleb, Emma listened from beside his bedroom door. She later checked in a new guest to the motel and stayed out of the way when Dylan entered the motel office to talk to Norman after realizing that Norma was oblivious to the truth. When Norma stormed out of the house after Dylan told her the truth, Emma was wondering what was happening, and was told to go back into the office. (The Deal)

When Emma called by the house to check if everything was okay, Dylan told her he came clean to Norma about Caleb, and she stormed out. Emma asked how she could help. He and Emma later found Norman in a trance-like state in the basement and decided to put him in Norma's bed. When Emma had a coughing fit, Dylan helped shift it by hitting her chest and they bonded. When Norman was finally put back to bed after being in the kitchen, Emma left and Dylan fell asleep beside him. (Norma Louise)

Dylan called to the motel office to thank Emma for her help with Norman and asked if she wanted to go out for a meal. After dinner plans were changed, Emma joined Dylan and the rest of the family and Romero up at the house for the meal. (The Last Supper)

Emma received a phone call from Dylan who told her that he would be out of town for a few days. She decided that it was time to discuss her relationship with Norman and told him that they should remain friends and she would always care about him, hugging him before he pulled away. She later called to Dylan's farm and chatted with Gunner before leaving some flowers, baked goods and a note for Dylan. (The Pit)

Dylan arrived at the motel as Emma was locking up for the night. Noticing that he was looking at the pit, she told him that Norma was installing a pool. She then asked him if his job was successful and he said that he didn't get the money and Emma offered him some but he refused. He later went to see Emma and gave her father the $50,000 that Caleb had got from Chick Hogan and made him promise not to tell Emma where it came from. He then went upstairs to see Emma, who was asleep on her bed but awoke when he came in. He told her that Caleb was leaving town and she revealed that Norman had told her about Caleb being his father, but she wasn't judging him. (Crazy)

While Emma was looking at her laptop, her father told her that he had just received news that a lung donor had been found and they would have to go to Portland. Emma asked how it was possible that she was moved up the transplant list, but her father reassured her everything would be okay. Later, while he was on the phone to the hospital, Emma walked out of the house. Worried, Will phoned Dylan to ask if he had seen her and told him the news about a lung becoming available. Dylan offered to look for her and found her at his cabin. She expressed her worries about the lung being ineffective and didn't want to spend her life being poked and prodded. Dylan told her she was the bravest person he knew and they kissed. (Unconscious)

Season 4

Rather than heading to the hospital in Willamette County with Norma, he chose to go to the hospital in Portland as Emma was having her lung transplant and Norma realized the two of them were a couple. When he arrived, he sat with Will Decody as they waited for news of Emma and later saw Emma's mother walk into the hospital. Both he and Will were relieved when a doctor told them that Emma had got through her operation. He went to see her, telling her she looked "awesome" and she smiled. (A Danger to Himself and Others)

After chatting with Will, Dylan decided to go and see Emma and told her he had to get back to the farm. She asked him if he was coming back and he asked if she wanted him to. She said she did and he gave her a kiss before leaving. (Goodnight, Mother)

As they walked together in the grounds of the hospital, Dylan told Emma that he was considering giving up the weed business as he wanted to do something better with his life and said that he would be firing Gunner. ('Til Death Do You Part)

As they walked and talked together on the hospital roof, Emma informed Dylan that she and her father would be moving to Seattle to continue her recovery. She asked Dylan if he would come with them and he said that he would before they kissed. (Lights of Winter)

Dylan brought Emma home to her father and when they were together in her bedroom, she said that she would have to get used to not being "Tube Girl" anymore. She told him that he would have to wait 4-6 weeks to see her naked but as they later lay together on her bed, she said she hadn't been truthful and that she was embarrassed by the scar she had. She showed it to him and he took off his shirt, showing off the different scars on his arms and chest. It made her feel better to know she shouldn't be embarrassed by her scars and they kissed. (Refraction)

Dylan arrived at Emma's house to find her arguing with her father about her mother and when Will asked him to back him up on what he was saying, Emma was angry that Dylan hadn't told her he had met her mother. When they were upstairs, she told them she and Will had been arguing about her mother's phone being disconnected. Later, he ended up giving Audrey's letter to her and after reading it, she said that she no longer wanted to search for her. Dylan lay on the bed beside her and told her that he loved her. (There's No Place Like Home)

Season 5

Picking up over two years after the events of the Season 4 finale, she was living a happy life in Seattle with Dylan and their daughter Kate. When Caleb made a surprise visit, Dylan revealed that he was no longer in contact with Norma and Norman and reluctantly agreed to let Caleb stay. However, after he revealed that Caleb was responsible for getting the money for Emma's surgery, she told Caleb he had to leave as she did not want their daughter growing up knowing about Dylan's past as a drug trader. (Dark Paradise)

After Caleb left, Emma told Dylan that she had talked to him about the influence he would have on Dylan if he stayed around and said that Kate might be short on grandparents but at least she would grow up in an honest environment. (The Convergence of the Twain)

After Emma found her mother's earring while searching for stamps, Dylan eventually revealed to her that he was no longer in contact with Norma due to Norman being so sick and told her about him being with Blaire Watson the night of her death as well as mentioning that Audrey had stayed at the motel but never checked out. Realizing what the latter possibly meant, she told Dylan not to talk to her.  When she was alone later, she found a news article online that stated that Norma had committed suicide. (Dreams Die First)

When Emma arrived at the motel in White Pine Bay, Dylan informed her that Audrey's body had been found and she told him that if she saw Norman she would kill him. She was not happy when Julia called by with the recommendation that he attend Norman's preliminary hearing and when he said he would not go if she did not want him to, she told him she could not decide for him. While she went to the funeral home to collect her mother's remains, she asked if Norma was buried there and said that Norman killed her mother. As she visited Norma's grave, she told her that she missed her and after collecting Audrey's ashes she scattered them in the place where she and Norman first hiked after they met. The following day, Emma decided to head home to Seattle but decided to visit Norman at the sheriff's station to say goodbye. However, when she got there she knew she was talking to "Mother" and told "her" to tell him she missed him. (Visiting Hours)

When Norman invited Dylan to have dinner at the house, the latter phoned Emma to tell him that Norman had been taken out of custody by Romero and was home. He then told Emma that he loved both her and Kate and said his goodbye. In a flash forward scene, Emma was shown with her daughter, now a few years older, going to meet Dylan somewhere, confirming that they were still happily married. (The Cord)

Family Tree



Episodes 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Season 1
Season 2
Season 3
Season 4
Season 5
— appears physically + — mentioned only , none — doesn't appear


  • Emma Decody did not exist in the Psycho novels or films. However, the director of the first sequel released in 1983 created the character Emma Spool, who was not present in any of the novels.
  • Emma drives a 1972 Volkswagen Beetle, which is a reference to the real-life serial killer Ted Bundy, who drove a 1968 Volkswagen Beetle.
  • In the final season premiere, Emma's birthday is revealed to be in October, however, her blog titled "It's My Birthday…" was published on August 8, 2013. Considering the blog was never mentioned in the show, it's more plausible that the former date is correct.
  • Series writer Bill Balas actually has Cystic Fibrosis and was the inspiration for the character being afflicted with the disease.
  • From March 2, 2013 to May 5, 2015, Emma ran a blog, where she expressed her opinions, feelings and reactions to the events around her. In total, 57 posts were made, 5 of which are video posts.


Main Characters
Season 1
Norman BatesNorma BatesDylan MassettEmma DecodyBradley Martin
Season 2
Norman BatesNorma BatesDylan MassettEmma DecodyBradley MartinAlex Romero
Season 3
Norman BatesNorma BatesDylan MassettEmma DecodyAlex RomeroCaleb Calhoun
Season 4
Norman BatesNorma BatesDylan MassettEmma DecodyAlex Romero
Season 5
Norman BatesNorma BatesDylan MassettEmma DecodyAlex Romero