In my last review, I made a ridiculous amount of spurious claims regarding the life of Twin Peaks co-creator’ Mark Frost. I didn’t even go off on a tangent about how Mark Frost also was a screenwriter for the David Jason-starring detective show; A Touch of Frost.
So, yeah, A Touch of Frost was a show that ran from 1992 and through to 2010. Mark Frost adapted R. D. Wingfield’s novels and thus an entire generation fell out of love with Del Boy.
Where was Nicholas Lyndhurst? Probably off having an extramarital affair with a woman who might end up being his own mother because of… time travel!
Actually, that is a perfect segue towards a little-known fact!
Time travel made Twin Peaks possible! Yes, this is very true.
You see, in 1955 a DeLorean with the optional extra of a time traveling device known as a Flux Capacitor crashed into one of the mountains that would eventually give the township its name.
So, there you have it. Twin Peaks could have been called Tri Peaks. This is all thanks to Christopher Lloyd and his ability to convert any vehicle into a time machine like, I don’t know? A fucking DeLorean or even a Klingon Bird of Prey (though, that was posthumous because Kirk kicked him off a styrofoam cliff… I kid you not, seriously. Christopher Lloyd played a Klingon in Star Trek III and Kirk ended up using Lloyd’s spaceship to travel back to 1986 to pilfer some whales from Sea World. What is it with Christopher Lloyd and time travel?!).
Enough about crazy old man Doc Brown.
Back to the scheduled Twin Peaks “review” and enough of the niche sci-fi references.
On to Walter Hill references! Have you ever seen that movie’ The Warriors? There’s a scene where the bad guy has little bottles on his fingers and he’s shouting; “Warriors, come out to play!” It’s an odd scene and I’m not sure if he’s supposed to be intimidating but here he is in Twin Peaks and he’s crashing his brother’s dinner time with some exceptionally good sandwiches.
Allow me to provide some context to the scene.
Audrey Horne is having a very, very quiet dinner with her father, mother and Native American headdress wearing bro. When her father’s own bro decides to introduce the family to some rather phallic sandwiches of the baguette variety and boy, does Ben Horne love his brother’s baguette!
It’s such a strange scene because his brother is called Jerry, why is that strange you ask?
Well, why not ice cream?
It’s like David Lynch is afraid of that extra ad revenue. He could have product-placed the fuck out with Ben and Jerry Ice Cream but instead he insisted that the catering company make the blandest looking sandwiches this side of 1990’s Soviet Russia (the news at the time was obsessed with people queuing for bread… why didn’t they watch Twin Peaks? Sheesh! Get it together, Russia!).
So, Ben leaves his family to maniacally eat sandwiches with Jerry. His wife hangs her head in shame and with this unhinged family atmosphere… it’s no wonder that Audrey Horne is absolutely mental. But Jerry insists on taking Ben to a Canadian brothel because we all know that Canadian brothels are the best.
They have themed brothels, Christopher Lloyd brothels, chips, cheese and gravy brothels. But this brothel has a white brothel madam called ‘Blackie’… Jesus Christ David Lynch! You missed a trick with the product placement and now this?!
One Eyed Jack’s casino-cum-brothel has an Alice in Wonderland-theme, I guess? And I swear one of the whores is Tara Reid, maybe not? But just like Tara Reid’s age; you’ll never know!
Anyway, One Eye Jack is a term given to a specific playing card in a deck, namely the Queen of Spades… you would think that it would be a King, right? Well, we’re both wrong.
So, we already knew that Ben Horne is a tremendous womaniser but now we know that this brothel is a place that probably has some kind of plot significance later on.
The whores are all dressed like sexy playing cards or twats… take your pick.
We next revisit James and Donna, they’re both in love and feeling really guilty because Laura Palmer was in love with James, probably and Donna was her BFF etc. So, I’m so bored of this plot. It’s such a retread from the last two episodes, I get it! For fuck’s sake, I know they both think they’re betraying the late-Laura Palmer but just get on with it. Nobody gives a fuck, we just want Special Agent Dale Cooper…
Fortunately for the viewer, we cut to The Great Northern Hotel. Cooper enters his room as if he were in some shitty sitcom. I was half expecting a studio audience to whoop and cheer as if he were Al Bundy but alas, Cooper merely blows on a whistle (maybe a duck caller since this is a hunting lodge?) and he receives a call from Native American’ Deputy Hawk. In the previous episode, he followed a man with one arm and lost him in the morgue. I didn’t bother mentioning that because I was too busy typing utter bullshit… anyway, the one-armed man seems to be plot relevant as well so it looks like Twin Peaks is actually progressing a cohesive plot after all.
Oh, how wrong was I by the time I finished this episode!
Someone knocks on Cooper’s door but when he opens said door, no one is there. Instead, he finds a note, it’s cryptic but we know what the note means. “Jack With One Eye”… could this bare relevance to the Canadian playing card-themed brothel?
I’m starting to worry that for the readers whom never had watched Twin Peaks, all this might seem like a convoluted mess of weirdness for weirdness sake and I certainly haven’t helped the situation so I’m going to give a quick breakdown of everything that has happened so far.
Dale Cooper is a Special Agent with the FBI. He’s investigating the murder of a young girl called Laura Palmer. Laura had a boyfriend called Bobby and Bobby’s best friend looks a bit like Eric Stoltz. Laura cheated on Bobby with a guy called James but that’s okay, Bobby cheated on Laura with a girl called Shelly. Shelly is married to an abusive trucker called Leo. Leo is also a big-time drug dealer and Bobby buys drugs from Leo. Bobby also owes $10,000 to Leo but that money has now been confiscated by the police because it was found in Laura’s safety deposit box.
Digressing back to James, James has an uncle called Big Ed. Big Ed’s wife is fucking crazy and is obsessed with having silent runners for her drapes. Big Ed is also cheating on his wife with a waitress who works with Shelly.
Fuck, I’m only halfway there with all these sexy shenanigans… that should give at least some context to the next sense.
Bobby and Not-Eric Stoltz are going to get some cocaine from a hollowed-out tree because this ain’t the hood, this is Twin Peaks mutha fucka!
They’re talking about Leo because they’re both a bit worried that they don’t have his money and Leo is supposed to be this really intimidating guy, right. So, they’re in the middle of the woods and they find an American football in a tree with only half the amount of drugs that they were expecting. Leo is like, “Hi guys! I’m in the woods as well and I have a gun so don’t mess with me!”
Both Bobby and Not-Eric shit themselves, not literally, this isn’t John Waters, it’s David Lynch (and Mark Frost but nobody cares about him) and Leo is real pissed that they don’t have his money. He’s also real pissed because he knows his wife is cheating on him but he doesn’t know with who?
Bobby then asks in the least subtle manner, “Do you know who? I mean, it’s not me bro. I would never do that, honest. You know it couldn’t be me, right? I would never come between you and your woman dawg. Do… do you know who. It. Might. Be?” He coughs and clears his throat, sweat dripping from his forehead, anxiety is reaching fever pitch, “Man, I swear… like, if I knew who she was cheating on you with, I would definitely tell you. I mean that, seriously dude. I didn’t know she was cheating on you but it’s not me, man. No sir, it’s definitely not me. I would never do anything like that to you. Never. Cross my heart and hope to die.” He clears his throat once more, “Do you? By any chance? Have any er… any idea of who it might be? Because, it’s not me… you can definitely scratch my name of your list of people your wife might be fucking!”
I’ve taken liberties, that isn’t an actual quote but it could’ve been!
Meanwhile, Big Ed has returned home, he’s completely covered in engine oil. It’s a like the aftermath of a Thomas the Tank Engine bukkake party and he’s the one in the middle. Now, while I muse over the logistical nightmare of a train, actually being able to masturbate I think it’s time for an amazing fact for today:
Did you know that the Back to the Future’ DeLorean was designed by Andrew Probert? You did? Well, did you know that he also designed the Enterprise for Star Trek The Next Generation?
What a fun fact!
Anyway, back to Big Ed and his lame attempt to bypass his crazy wife’s idiosyncrasies. He ends up disrupting her rowing machine work out when he accidentally tramples on her drape runners. She’s left them on the floor for plot convenience and he inadvertently drops a bit of grease onto said runners. Now, this is very important later… the serendipitous oil ejaculate actually lubricates the runners and thus, completely silent drape runners are born.
Some of the best inventions in history were usually the result of serendipity.
Post-It Notes, for example.
But prior to discovering this, Big Ed’s wife yells at him; “I was up all night working on that invention! I was going to make the world’s first completely silent drape runner! Ed you make me sick!”
Other than being completely mental, she exhibits some remarkable strength. She totally bends the metal handles of her rowing machine and if this detail isn’t brought up later then I will be woefully disappointed. I’m hoping she becomes a superhero, like a half-blind Jessica Jones or Superman with a vagina.
It’s a fun scene and though I always assumed that Twin Peaks was a murder mystery, the mystery really is… what the fuck am I watching!?
Hey, Bobby has gone to visit Shelly because, why not, I guess? She’s afraid of Leo and his abusive tendencies. Christ, he beat her with a bar of soap-in-a-sock in the last episode. No wonder she’s afraid of him. But Bobby is insistent, he barges in and tries to comfort her by saying that if Leo ever tries to do that again, he’s dead! It seems that Bobby has lowered his theatrics in this episode, a shame really because I really liked his West Side Story bullshit.
Apologies if I gloss over this scene but I haven’t even reached the two most awesome scenes in this episode yet.
“Following a dream I had three years ago, I have become deeply moved by the plight of the Tibetan people, and have been filled with a desire to help them. I also awoke from the same dream realizing that I had subconsciously gained knowledge of a deductive technique, involving mind-body coordination operating hand-in-hand with the deepest level of intuition.” Says Special Agent Dale Cooper to his colleagues from the Sheriff Department.
The whole gang is there, Sheriff Truman, Deputy Hawk, Deputy Andy and Lucy but they’re not at the Sheriff’s Department. They’re in the middle of the woods, with a massive blackboard, a table with fresh coffee and donuts.
They’re all on a cute little field trip and Cooper wants to teach them his special deductive technique… this involves throwings stones at a bottle until the bottle breaks.
On the blackboard is a list of every character that has a letter J in their name because Laura mentioned it in her diary… Yeah…
In Lucy’s hand is a stick of chalk and Cooper has instructed her to cross off the name if he misses.
It’s a nice scene that helps the viewer to remember some of the key players in this bizarre show.
Truman reads the names out, one by one. Cooper plucks a stone from a bucket being held by Deputy Hawk, it’s worth mentioning that Hawk is also wearing oven gloves while he holds the bucket. Because, why not?
The bottle eventually breaks when Leo Johnson’s name is mentioned.
I’ve adopted this form of abstract reasoning and have assimilated this technique into many facets of my day to day life. Usually when it becomes prudent to make some sort of important decision.
My family came from a long tradition of stoning and generally throwing stones at things.
We used to stone wayward women and sick children centuries ago and we were so good at it that we adopted the surname; “Stoner”. Seriously, I kid you not!
Try it, it’s fun!
I love this woodland scene where logic has been buried in a shallow grave, there’s no reason for them to be in the woods. How did they get that large black board there? Did Cooper make a conscious decision to bring oven gloves? Why don’t the real police utilise this technique?
But overall, it is a generally fun scene that is not only informative but it is also entertaining and very funny albeit in an abstract way.
It also cements the idea that these characters from the Sheriff’s Department are in essence, a family.
The scene also gives us our first real, prime suspect even though it is blatantly obvious that Leo isn’t the killer. He’s an arsehole, sure, but he didn’t kill Laura Palmer.
I haven’t finished watching the entire series yet but I’m guessing we have yet to even see the actual killer on screen.
Or have we?
Sherilyn Fenn (Audrey Horne) is back again and this time she attracts the attention of Donna.
Donna and her family are having breakfast at the diner where Shelly and Big Ed’s lover works. Audrey wanders over to the jukebox and plays her song, it’s that sleepy melodic jazz number that usually plays whenever she is on screen. Some of the big players in Twin Peaks have their own theme song and Audrey’s the one that sticks in my mind the most. Mainly because I’m a little bit in love with 1990’ Sherilyn Fenn but also because it sums up this series.
As Audrey puts it; “God, I love this music… isn’t it too dreamy?”
Twin Peaks feels like that dream you forget the moment you wake up. You can remember places and people but everything is nonsensical and utterly convoluted.
So, Donna speaks to Audrey, Audrey is flirting with a mug of black coffee.
She asks Donna if she likes coffee and then Audrey goes on to explain why she likes coffee; “you see… Agent Cooper loves coffee.” Audrey has an obvious crush on our favourite FBI Agent.
If there are any girls reading this and you look like 1990’ Sherilyn Fenn please, please leave a comment.
We can get nude and stuff genitals into other genitals until stuff gets messy.
I’m romantic like that!
So, I was thinking… do you know what would make this show even better? Maybe, introduce another fucking character!
Enter Miguel Ferrer’s, Agent Albert Rosenfield. Miguel Ferrer is one of those actors you recognise but can never really pinpoint which film you’ve seen him in. He usually plays some arsehole politician or government agent and in this show he plays an arsehole government agent. He bursts into the Sheriff’s Department, he believes everyone is a dumb hick and basically insults everyone with his arsehole demeanour. Sheriff Truman lays the verbal smackdown and Agent Rosenfield leaves… probably to return in another episode.
Cooper gives his dorky thumbs up at the Sheriff.
An episode of Twin Peaks isn’t one worth watching unless Laura’s “mom” has a savage emotional breakdown. Some actors have a signature “move”, some can vomit on cue, some can juggle or sing and others can have entertaining emotional breakdowns. Now, this makes me sound callous but I think David Lynch has a way of including humour where there shouldn’t be any. The scene in question involves Ray Wise, he puts on an incredibly happy song and then he starts dancing with Laura’s homecoming queen photo. “Mom” tries to wrestle the photo frame from him but the glass breaks and Ray Wise cries while smearing his blood onto the picture of his now dead daughter. “Mom” screams while pulling at her hair.
It should be a heart-wrenching scene but the music and the acting just leaves you in fits of laughter and this isn’t a result of a lack in quality (like those so-bad-they’re-good types of films), David Lynch has masterfully constructed this scene to be funny and that is why he’s the mother fucking director.
It is also worth mentioning that I think Ray Wise actually and accidentally cut his hand and that the blood he smears on his dead daughters’ image is real blood.
And like all good three course meals (this is the third episode, after all), we’ve had a brilliant starter with Ben and Jerry (wait, that should be dessert?!) and silent runners, the main course of woodland stone-throwing deductions and Ray Wise being Ray Wise but what’s the best part of a three course meal?
Dessert of course and this episode ends with one hell of a scene.
This episode is obviously the quintessential episode of Twin Peaks and it is probably because of the following;
The baffling dream sequence.
Who shot Mister Burns? Remember that episode of The Simpsons when Chief Wiggum has a dream involving Lisa Simpson and she’s talking backwards… yeah, Twin Peaks totally ripped off The Simpsons but that’s okay.
So, Kyle MacLachlan looks like a middle-aged lesbian now but back in 1990 he was covered in old-age make-up for a weird dream sequence that goes on for nearly ten minutes.
He’s seated in a red room and celebrity dwarf’ Micheal J. Anderson is doing his best Micheal J. Fox impression by shaking uncontrollably.
But before we can watch this dwarf dance, allow me to present yet another fun fact!
Did you know that Micheal J. Anderson portrayed Brothers Grimm character’ Rumpelstiltskin in Star Trek Deep Space Nine? It was an episode called “If Wishes Were Horses” and it was also the 16th episode of that shows’ first season. It was also the 270th produced Star Trek episode and it was directed by Robert Legato who is usually a visual effects supervisor and his credits include; Titanic, Avatar, Some Harry Potter Movie, Loads of Martin Scorsese films, Cast Away and many, many more!
“Through the darkness of future past, the magician longs to see. One chance out between two worlds, fire walk with me.” Says Mike, the man with one arm.
The first two minutes of the dream sequence focuses mostly on the man with one arm, he’s been present in every episode but he’s easy to miss. He’s speaking cryptically about a tattoo he had on his left arm, how he met the face of God and he speaks of Bob, the man that Laura’s “mom” saw in her own dream. He’s a gangly man with long grey hair. Mike even cut off his own arm, apparently. “One chance out between two worlds, fire walk with me.”
Ooooohh, yeah! “Fire Walk With Me!” That was written on the piece of paper found at the murder scene. Then Bob appears and he threatens the audience, he’s going to “catch you with my death bag! You may think I’ve gone insane… But I promise! I will kill again!”
Completely unlike the previous scenes, this dream sequence is genuinely creepy. He also briefly see Laura’s “mom” run down her stairs, Bob at the foot of Laura’s bed and Laura’s corpse and all the while Dale Cooper is asleep in his bed.
We return to old man Cooper, sitting in the red room with Laura Palmer and the dwarf. The dwarf and indeed, Laura both speak in reverse but the scene was filmed with actors acting in reverse then reversed, in-versed or adversed, whatever… anyway, the dwarf is as cryptic as one-armed’ Mike, he talks about Laura being his cousin and that Dale Cooper’s favourite chewing gum will be coming back. Apparently, the woman sitting next to Micheal J. Anderson isn’t Laura Palmer but looks like her? Then Laura speaks in in-versed, reversed, whatever, it’s all weird as fuck.
Then it hits me! Jesus, Micheal J. Anderson looks like Maisie Williams, you know? That girl with the weird shaped head from Game of Thrones (a show I have no intention of actually watching).
The dwarf dances like a dick and Laura goes over to Cooper, leans over and kisses him before whispering something in his ear. All the while, the dwarf dances to sleezy jazz.
Cooper wakes up and instantly makes a phone call… apparently he knows who the killer is!
Probably Bob, right? It’s Bob. Bob caught Laura with his deathbag and I didn’t even need to stone a bottle to figure that out…
Overall, this has been one epic, long arse “review”. It’s nearly half the length of a fucking dissertation and if you read this all the way to the end, then yeah, good for you.
You obviously have more free time than this fucking loser.
I give this episode 10 Back to Future references out of 10.
And you know who Marty McFly is?
It’s Not Eric Stoltz!