Welcome to our biweekly roundtable of Twin Peaks where we are working our way through every. Single. Episode. Some of us are regulars and some of us newbies, but none of our experiences are the same. So get yourself a damn fine cup of coffee, watch along with us, and feel free to chime in on the comments section. Say anything you like, our log does not judge.
Episode 21: Miss Twin Peaks
After picking the lock on Major Briggs’ handcuffs, Leo tells him to “Save Shelly.” His main concern is for Shelly’s safety rather than his own. I feel like his concern for her well being translates into excusing the emotional and physical abuse her put her through. I find it easier to forgive the characters that tried to kill each other than I do the long term abuse of Shelly. I suppose this falls in line with the positive development other characters went through, but this storyline doesn’t sit right with me.
Ben Horne is reading up on the major world religions and is able to fully empathize with Audrey’s heartbreak over John Justice Wheeler leaving. The old Ben wouldn’t have been capable of such compassion.
BOB is attracted to fear and was able to remanifest due to Josie’s fear.
Windom made that classic mistake of the villain explaining his entire plan to Leo before taking off, but it doesn’t come back to disrupt anything. Unless this comes into play in Season 3.
You can still see the bite mark on Dick’s nose!
Ed’s reactions to Nadine are so perfectly stunned and confused.
Major Briggs has lost his sense of identity; he didn’t remember his own first name.
Feelings of intense love open the door to the Red Room, too.
Heather Graham looks so young. Also, Lucy still doesn’t look pregnant at all.
What did Windom do to the Log Lady?
When Lucy chose Andy to be the father Dick looked hilariously relived.
Episode 22: Beyond Life and Death
After watching this episode I had a hard time sleeping. It was like a waking nightmare to watch Cooper be consumed by BOB.
The only thing I could remember from my first viewing of this episode was the final shot of Dale smashing his face into the mirror with BOB reflected on the other side. I couldn’t remember the exact context of the scene and thought that BOB had possibly taken control of him when Josie was absorbed into the wood. Another possibility I had in mind was that in that moment BOB possessed him and he broke the mirror in a last ditch effort to resist it. But to see Cooper’s shadow self overtake him was chilling.
This ending has a powerful message about good vs. evil. Sorry to quote Nietzsche, but it fits:
Battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.
By moving through the maze from the Red Room to the Black Lodge, Coop is able to meet with BOB and bargain for Annie’s life. Through this interaction his shadow self comes into being and escapes, leaving Coop trapped behind. Just negotiating with the dark was enough to bring Dark Coop to life.
Watching Agent Cooper run to get out was one of the most intense scenes I’ve ever seen. I am putting it in my Top Ten Best Scenes List. The part that I found the most unsettling was when Coop began to walk back out and Shadow Leland said “I did not kill anybody.” Shadow Coop follows and the two laugh before he begins to pursue Light Coop. Making the murders into a joke and then laughing about it makes the callousness and cruelty of BOB so real. It isn’t simply the acts themselves that are disturbing, it’s the joy of the perpetrators.
There are so many questions left unanswered by this finale. What do people do when they’re trapped in the Red Room and/or White Lodge and/or Black Lodge? Does time move differently there? Can two versions of the same person be in the world at the same time? Could an act of love by Audrey (or Annie (insert eyeroll)) give access to the White Lodge and free Cooper? And if he were free, would that be the end of Dark Coop or would they have a showdown? What was it that brought Shadow Coop into being? Was it that he made the bargain with Windom, but BOB inherited the agreement when he took Windom’s soul? Or was the deal never valid since Windom did not have the ability to negotiate such terms, and Coop’s shadow self was manifested from his presence in the Black Lodge alone? Does Leo escape Windom’s cabin?
I can’t wait for Season 3.
Twin Peaks boils down to the interconnection of good and evil. Even the worst of us can redeem ourselves, and even the best of us can turn into the bad guys. Human nature is very fluid and we should all be careful to be kind to one another, and the surest way for your kindness to be genuine is to express it through food. Mainly with pie.
Readers, thank you for watching along with us. We started out with several contributors, then a few, then two, and then it was all me. You all get gold stars.
Now get yourself a cup of coffee. You earned it.