News

Did David Lynch Win New Fans With His Twin Peaks Revival?

Our writer, new to the series, seeks out other Lynch newbies to find out if the legend lives up to the hype.

by | May 22, 2017 | Comments

The revival of Twin Peaks, the ’90s cultural phenomenon created by David Lynch, was announced years ago. There was plenty of time for anyone who missed the show’s original two seasons and movie, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, to catch up. But life gets busy and Netflix drops a new season of some show every week —Master of None and Kimmy Schmidt aren’t going to watch themselves! — so viewers who never found the time to catch up on Twin Peaks probably aren’t alone.

There were plenty of fans on Twitter sharing theories to help fill in the gaps — or not.

A Twin Peaks newb wasn’t that far behind the fanboys when Showtime aired the first two hours of Twin Peaks: The Return on Sunday. Episodes 3 and 4 went up on Showtime Anytime right after, but the first two already provide a lot to unpack, so let’s start there.

Anyone alive in the ‘90s already knows the basics even if they never watched it: Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) went to Twin Peaks to solve the murder of Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee). The kooky town had a Log Lady (Catherine E. Coulson), who shares messages from her log; owls; a pale horse; and some damn fine coffee and cherry pie.


SPOILER WARNING: THE FOLLOWING INCLUDES PLOT DETAILS FROM EPISODES 1 and 2 OF TWIN PEAKS: THE RETURN


Double the Cooper With Double the Hair

After 25 years, Lynch and co-creator Mark Frost upended even the few basic things Twin Peaks thought they could count on. The Agent Cooper we first meet (after a brief intro in the Black Lodge, that weird red-curtained place with stripey floors), now has hair like Nicolas Cage in Con Air — and a temper like Nicolas Cage in everything else!


It soon became clear that this had something to do with BOB, an evil spirit from the Black Lodge who possessed Leland Palmer (Ray Wise) in the original series. By the end of part 2, long-haired Cooper was refusing to go back to the Black Lodge, where mysterious callers were trying to get back to BOB. Some fans were onto BOB much earlier.


Fortunately, good old clean-cut Cooper was still there in the Black Lodge. That doesn’t look like a fun place to spend 25 years. Somebody get that man some coffee and pie!

At least he got to see Laura Palmer again.


So in the Black Lodge, a dead person can age 25 years. Or at least some bright white light can wear a Laura Palmer face!

The horse appears briefly too.

And a talking tree. So this gets complicated. The tree says he is the arm. The arm was played by Michael J. Anderson in the original series. You know what they say: When Michael J. Anderson isn’t available, get a tree.

So yes, for double Kyle MacLachlan, and just to see how these trippy visuals develop, whether they’re explained or not, keep watching Twin Peaks.


The Log Lady And Other Friendly Neighbors

I totally know the log lady! It’s still Catherine E. Coulson, who passed away in 2015, so she must have filmed scenes before she died. She’s got breathing tubes in her nose, which could have been her reality near the end of life, but it was very touching that Lynch was able to include her.

Hawk (Michael Horse) was still there to follow the Log’s guidance.


There were plenty of other Twin Peaks regulars a newcomer would be excited to meet for the first time. Lucy (Kimmy Robertson) is still the sheriff’s receptionist, and she filled everyone in that Cooper’s been missing for at least 24 years.

It wasn’t until the last scene in The Bang Bang Bar that Shelly (Madchen Amick) shows up. She’s out with her girlfriends and notices James (James Marshall) eyeing one of her friends.

James, I had to look up, but he was on the original show too. Shelly says he had a motorcycle accident so he’s quiet now, but if the fans are happy to see him again, so am I.

Jerry (David Patrick Kelly) is clearly a fan favorite, so can’t wait to see more of him.

Leland Palmer and Phillip Michael Gerard (Al Strobel) are also in the Black Lodge with Cooper. The Giant (Carel Struycken) is now officially credited as “???????,” so people we thought we knew are getting more vague!


The Glass Box of Doom

Of course there are totally new characters and bizarre scenarios, so everyone is in the same boat watching the new storylines unfold. That science experiment in New York City where a college student (Ben Rosenfield) is watching a glass box to see if anything appears becomes the second most graphic scene in the show when a figure appears in the box, then busts out and kills both the college student and the flirtatious Tracy (Madeline Zima).


By the end of the second hour, Cooper has appeared in the glass box, but it was while the observer was out in the hall with Tracy. So did Cooper come back and kill them, or was that BOB? Or something else? Definitely going to have to watch the series to find out.


Who Killed Ruth Davenport?

We met a lot of new characters, some briefly like Beverly (Ashley Judd) and Chantal Hutchens (Jennifer Jason Leigh). It looks like Bill Hastings (Mathew Lillard) is the main suspect in a new murder. A body was found in an apartment in Buckhorn, South Dakota, in what was the most graphic scene.

Since she was missing an eye, some fans thought she was someone familiar, but they were wrong.

The body was Ruth Davenport, a librarian. Bill’s fingerprints are all over her apartment and his only alibi is an affair he was having. But his wife Phyllis (Cornelia Guest) is cheating on him too. Phyllis is letting Bill go down for this, but Evil Cooper kills her before we got much of a chance to know her.

And then, two cells over from Bill, a black figure dematerializes from the cell. If Lillard’s unhinged performance and the murder mystery werent’ enough (they were), you’ve got to keep watching to find out what that was.This sure ain’t Law & Order.


Mr. Lynch, You Have Our Attention

Low-fi visual effects punctuate the twisted nature of the Twin Peaks story, and there are trails of breadcrumbs dropped that we’ll also have to follow, like Evil Cooper’s Ace of Not Quite Spades. What’s that about?

And there are plenty of cast members who have not yet appeared. So we can look forward to finding out who Robert Knepper, Jim Belushi, David Koechner, Trent Reznor, and Amanda Seyfried are going to play. One guess is that Seyfried’s character is Shelly’s daughter.


So yes, here’s one viewer who got sucked into David Lynch’s trippy world tonight and who’s going to watch to the end, and maybe even go back and catch up on the original finally.

Twin Peaks airs Sunday nights at 9 p.m. on Showtime.


POLL: 


Tag Cloud

blockbuster doctor who nbcuniversal football President Comedy Animation Musicals BBC psycho french concert Television Academy police drama franchise TruTV free movies Food Network indie 2018 adventure Tubi Hulu Adult Swim television elevated horror SDCC romance Marvel Studios 2019 Hear Us Out political drama SundanceTV A&E diversity DC streaming service dramedy dark kaiju richard e. Grant Biopics Amazon Prime Black History Month anthology independent OWN talk show kids historical drama scary movies Comedy Central Sony Pictures casting reviews hollywood strong female leads Nickelodeon TV Land Universal Tomatazos award winner quibi tv talk 2020 fast and furious Oscars halloween tv docuseries 72 Emmy Awards Pride Month MCU rt archives facebook Spectrum Originals Lucasfilm Lionsgate NBC CBS TBS crime thriller Emmys USA Network Anna Paquin VH1 Super Bowl scorecard movies Lifetime Reality Competition Chilling Adventures of Sabrina video on demand cancelled A24 criterion blaxploitation game show 45 PaleyFest space TCA Awards Video Games Creative Arts Emmys trailers FXX what to watch Netflix Christmas movies FX on Hulu X-Men 4/20 RT History El Rey First Reviews Apple psychological thriller The CW singing competition Disney Grammys Set visit CW Seed TIFF Vudu comiccon Awards Tour child's play Marathons Bravo Netflix Marvel Television werewolf Mindy Kaling harry potter Best and Worst canceled TV shows sag awards WarnerMedia venice Pirates cars Box Office chucky Marvel Trivia Superheroe biography Red Carpet BET Premiere Dates Sneak Peek Ellie Kemper politics Dark Horse Comics Shondaland golden globe awards Musical book adaptation composers heist movie directors dragons sequels Captain marvel stoner Britbox BAFTA Showtime animated hidden camera National Geographic TCA Winter 2020 disaster screenings theme song Mary Tyler Moore justice league Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Amazon Prime Video Music Western American Society of Cinematographers Mudbound ITV Schedule travel crossover Cartoon Network sports PlayStation stop motion Shudder pirates of the caribbean thriller australia foreign See It Skip It popular HBO Go aliens classics Emmy Nominations emmy awards spy thriller kong YouTube Classic Film hispanic Year in Review golden globes Alien 24 frames Film sequel die hard cops Tarantino slashers Black Mirror vampires social media Quiz OneApp king kong prank Peacock New York Comic Con Disney streaming service binge finale obituary Disney Channel Interview documentary 71st Emmy Awards adaptation Character Guide Mary Poppins Returns Arrowverse stand-up comedy Fall TV PBS Sundance TV TCA VOD latino witnail canceled TV Turner Classic Movies zombie dc Television Critics Association Drama comedies 2015 japanese comic BBC America joker toronto ABC Family Brie Larson Amazon green book anime USA remakes science fiction cartoon based on movie Turner satire Ghostbusters Binge Guide Holiday indiana jones WGN The Purge Calendar miniseries Winter TV south america YouTube Red 93rd Oscars documentaries sitcom Funimation cancelled television cults reboot 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards women Cannes spanish language Watching Series christmas movies rotten ABC 2016 MTV FX Lifetime Christmas movies crime drama Family Starz CMT Summer worst movies NYCC Pixar Fox News Christmas Stephen King Pet Sematary breaking bad children's TV video unscripted supernatural new star wars movies boxoffice spinoff Logo cats films Walt Disney Pictures dogs AMC ghosts worst Syfy fresh news 007 Nominations comic books cancelled TV shows The Arrangement robots The Witch blockbusters Broadway DC Universe toy story Film Festival festivals HBO First Look laika true crime twilight Cosplay Heroines Certified Fresh best YA cinemax CNN screen actors guild discovery halloween serial killer spider-man TCA 2017 Comics on TV TV One Photos Women's History Month Sci-Fi universal monsters GIFs Infographic Disney+ Disney Plus TCM Travel Channel SXSW Countdown YouTube Premium Legendary Valentine's Day technology BBC One asian-american cancelled TV series Columbia Pictures Awards Writers Guild of America name the review Reality mutant The Walt Disney Company godzilla 20th Century Fox batman Spike Rock Star Wars CBS All Access Comic Book Holidays Sundance Now 21st Century Fox Rocketman DirecTV game of thrones Pop TV spanish jamie lee curtis period drama Acorn TV Mystery Apple TV Plus Trailer E3 Extras hist nature Discovery Channel GLAAD MSNBC ratings crime The Walking Dead Trophy Talk E! italian ESPN Thanksgiving Avengers versus LGBTQ Freeform Exclusive Video Martial Arts Pop LGBT Star Trek series transformers boxing Paramount Plus monster movies Mary poppins History Podcast telelvision Esquire 2021 HBO Max critics mockumentary comics Academy Awards APB Rom-Com cooking Polls and Games Spring TV BET Awards Teen TNT Horror ABC Signature IFC Films ID Fox Searchlight Song of Ice and Fire revenge Rocky natural history Disney Plus mission: impossible Amazon Studios Endgame movie Sundance VICE war a nightmare on elm street renewed TV shows Ovation superman FOX book RT21 Superheroes Country deadpool TLC Hallmark Paramount GoT streaming spain james bond Crunchyroll 2017 docudrama Warner Bros. superhero medical drama Epix Toys IFC Winners DGA Crackle Apple TV+ Fantasy teaser TV renewals Hallmark Christmas movies zombies DC Comics jurassic park rom-coms all-time Paramount Network Elton John nfl festival archives Nat Geo San Diego Comic-Con ViacomCBS parents Tumblr 99% Masterpiece dceu Chernobyl Kids & Family Action razzies zero dark thirty Baby Yoda Election romantic comedy Opinion The Academy black rotten movies we love