We’re nearing the end of the Twin Peaks __return, people: plot lines coming together, actual cliff hangers, lots of blood. Plus, there were some standout sequences that take us into the mysterious realm in between our world and that of the Red Room / Black Lodge. This week reminded us that it’s been now thirteen episodes with hardly any of the various city-based plot lines merging. And while part of the fun and the brilliance of Twin Peaks is that David Lynch can inhabit multiple modes at once, at times the return has felt stretched too thin (and plot acrobatics only have so much novelty when they don’t cohere at all). It’s rumored the series was originally supposed to be many episodes shorter, and then took years to finally come together. This episode gives a hint at what a tighter, crisper Twin Peaks might have looked like. Because of all that, we’ll recap chronologically this week.
Gordon Cole, over in Buckhorn, calls Lucy at the Twin Peaks Sheriff Department. “You’ve been there all through the years Lucy?” he asks. She replies, “Andy and I have taken some vacations. One year we went to Bora Bora.” Ha ha. Frank Truman fills Gordon in on the pages from Laura Palmer’s diary “that indicate two Coopers.”
Albert explains case number one of Blue Rose to the newly inducted Tammy: In 1975, two young field agents investigated a murder in Olympia, WA, and went to arrest a suspect, Lois Duffy. They found two women inside her motel room: one dying from a bullet wound and the other with a gun. “I’m like the blue rose,” the wounded one said, and smiled, died, then disappeared before their eyes. The other woman, screaming in the corner, they noticed was also Lois Duffy, not a twin. Then, while waiting trial, saying she never committed the murder, Lois hung herself. The two arresting officers were Gordon and Philip Jeffries. Though Albert and Tammy don’t get into these details, clearly something similar is going on with Cooper, and I’m predicting a final showdown between his two iterations, where one lives and one dies.
What’s the significance of the blue rose? Tammy’s on it. “She was not natural,” she surmises of Lois Duffy, since roses aren’t blue. (Like Bob-Cooper and Dougie-Cooper). Enter Gordon, then Diane. Gordon asks Diane about the last night she saw Cooper: did Cooper mention Major Briggs? Yes, he did. They give her the rundown on how Briggs died only a few days ago (we’re 14 episodes in and only a few days have passed?). They found a ring in his stomach inscribed to a Dougie from a Janey-E. Diane gasps—her sister, Jane, nickname Janey-E, is married to a man named Douglas Jones. Yessssssssssssssss. She claims they haven’t talked in years. They hate each other. This doesn’t sound especially true to me, and I still stand by the earlier prediction that Janey-E might be in the know.
Once Diane leaves, Gordon fills in Tammy and Albert about the “two Coopers” thing. He then repeats to them that he had a dream last night with Monica Bellucci—cue the Monica Bellucci black-and-white dream sequence. (Also, as we know, Cooper used to pull from his dreams regularly.) In the dream, she said she needed to talk to him, and when they met at the café, Cooper was there, but Gordon couldn’t see his face. He had a coffee with Monica and her friends. Then she said, “We are like the dreamer who dreams and then lives inside the dream.” And then she said, “But who is the dreamer?” She indicated for Gordon to look back behind him, he saw himself from long ago, listening to Cooper telling him about a dream he had. Which was the day Philip Jeffries appeared and asked about Cooper, “Who do you think that is?” (in Fire Walk with Me). Has Cooper always been “like the blue rose?” Did Cooper always live inside his dream?
Back at the Twin Peaks sheriff’s station, the other officers arrest Chad, the one who got rid of Miriam’s letter about Richard Horne. Then the team (Andy, Hawk, Truman, and Bobby) drives out to the woods to go to the place from Major Briggs’ map. They find Jack Rabbit’s Palace, a creepy-looking tree trunk. They put some soil from the site in their pockets. Deeper into the woods, there’s smoke, flashing lights, and… a woman’s body. It’s the eyeless woman Cooper met in the in-between place (credited as Naido) before coming back to the real world. She tries to tell them something in a garbled voice, holding onto Andy’s hand.
Something opens up in the sky, like it did for Gordon in Buckhorn, and they look up into it and see… what? Andy looks too hard, like Gordon, and disappears up into it. He ends up in that other world with the Fireman, also known as the Giant. (It’s still unclear if Carel Struycken is a totally new character or if this is some other iteration of the Giant.)
Something appears in Andy’s hand: smoke rises from it and then a hole opens up in the ceiling with a screen. Andy looks up into it and sees a shadowy figure (the Experiment, which struck in New York) then flashes from episode eight of the Woodsmen, Bob, the Red Room, Laura Palmer’s photograph…then the woman, Naido, who was lying on the ground. Wobbly, color images appear from the Red Room: Cooper and Bob’s inhabiting of Cooper split apart; a scene of Lucy at the station; a street pole with “6” on it. Then this all turns back into smoke and goes back into the apparatus, which disappears. Then Andy returns to the real world with Naido in his arms back at Jack Rabbit’s with the team. Andy says there are people who want this woman dead, and she needs to be kept where she will be safe– he’s suddenly assured. No one else remembers what happened before this moment.
They keep the woman in a cell. She continues to speak in her garbled voice, as Chad and a drunk listen on.
At the Great Northern Hotel, two security guards, Jimmy and a new character, Freddy, hang out before going to the Roadhouse. It’s Jimmy’s birthday, and wants to see Renee. But she’s married. Ugh. Same old. Wait, why is Freddy British? Well, Freddy wears a glove on his right hand at all times—it’s fused to his skin. Why? One night, walking home alone in London, he was sucked up into a tunnel in the air. (Sound familiar?) There was a man there who called himself the Fireman. (Checks out.) The man said to go to the hardware store and find a package of gloves already opened, with only a right glove inside, and buy it, and to put the right glove on his hand. That right hand, he said, will then possess the power of an enormous pole driver. Freddy woke up to find the prophecy was completely true… but the shopkeeper wouldn’t sell him the glove since it was open. He then stole it and the shopkeeper chased after him and tackled him. When Freddy punched him back, he snapped his neck. Once you’ve got the glove on, go to Twin Peaks, and there you will find your destiny, the Fireman had told him. Jimmy remarks on the story, and wonders why Freddy was chosen. Freddy says the Fireman had said, “Why not you?” but when he went to buy his ticket to Twin Peaks, they already had a ticket for him. I’m personally wondering if that green glove possesses a power that Bob/Cooper also has, as we saw in last week’s episode at the arm wrestling match.
At the Elk’s Point Bar, we’ve got Sarah Palmer. She orders a Bloody Mary (since when is this the choice of a hard-drinking chain smoker, but OK) and gets approached by a man in a “TRUCK YOU” shirt. He starts harassing her, to which she responds, “I’ll eat you.” She pulls her face off and shows behind her flesh is black-and-white screen with the Experiment lurking across it. (!) Then she puts her face back on and attacks the man, gauging out his throat—just like the Experiment, and the Woodsmen, have in the past. Then she screams like she didn’t see anything. The bartender asks if she had anything to do with this, and she says no. “With half his neck missing?” Then she stares him down. Do not mess with Sarah Palmer.
At the Roadhouse… more pretty randos with problems! I’m not going to recap this conversation on principle because these tag-ons rarely lead anywhere except to give one key piece of info. Which is in this case is that they know Billy—the mysterious Billy whom Audrey has been looking for. One of these randos was the last person to see him, when Billy jumped a six-foot fence and broke into her house; there was blood coming out of his nose and mouth. Maybe the drunk guy at the station? She also knows that he and her mom had a thing—it’s Tina, mentioned previously but not seen. The randos listen to a set by Lissie, and that brings us up to the final stretches of the summer of Twin Peaks.
A Field Guide to Recognizing Your Favorite Twin Peaks Actors Now, 26 Years Later
Though Kyle MacLachlan has since starred in other cult series, even when he was Charlotte’s impotent husband on Sex and the City and a murderer on Desperate Housewives, he’ll always be known as Special Agent Dale Cooper, a man never too far away from a slice of cherry pie or cup of strong, black joe. (No word yet on whether Diane will be returning, too.)
Death be damned, Laura Palmer is coming back with a bang by starring in all 18 episodes of the new series—that is, unless Sheryl Lee, whose first post-Peaks role was Salome opposite Al Pacino, and who has since showed up in Winter’s Bone and Woody Allen’s Café Society, is simply reprising her role as Laura’s suspiciously identical cousin, Maddy.
Dana Ashbrook has kept up acting with a steady roster of smaller films, including 2012’s The Agression Scale with Ray Wise, aka Leland Palmer, and more than a few appearances on Dawson’s Creek, presumably making him more than up to the job in reprising his role as the annoying ultimate bad boy Bobby Briggs—even now that his hair’s gone gray.
Though she’s now a long way from a schoolgirl, the ever flirtatious Audrey Horne may have a chance at getting together with Coop after all, especially since actress Sherilyn Fenn has been keeping up her acting chops on shows like Gilmore Girls and Shameless (not to mention appearing on the cover of Playboy in the ’90s).
At 70, Peggy Lipton scarcely seems to have aged since she last played Norma Jennings, the owner of the Double R Diner, though she has since raised another actress, her daughter Rashida Jones.
Richard Beymer‘s eyes seem only bluer than ever since the now 79-year-old actor last turned up as Benjamin Horne, Audrey’s father and the owner of the Great Northern Hotel (not to mention an appearance in West Side Story, which helped to earn him a Golden Globe for New Star of the Year that he shared with Warren Beatty). Not that viewers have been able to appreciate them: Twin Peaks is only Beymer’s fourth on-screen appearance so far in the 2000s.
From blue streaks to twin top knots, Kimmy Robertson seems to have as much appreciation for an out-there hairdo as Lucy Moran, her curly-haired secretary in the sheriff’s office. Robertson has since lent her high-pitched voice to shows like Batman and The Simpsons, plus appeared onscreen on an episode of Drake & Josh—all good practice for appearing on all 18 episodes this season.
Like Leland Palmer, Laura’s potentially murderous father, actor Ray Wise has since gone gray, a new look he’s shown off in shows like Mad Men, Fresh Off the Boat, Gilmore Girls, 24, and How I Met Your Mother. That’s range.
Another face who’ll be showing up in the full series, Mädchen Amick has lately turned up on Riverdale, plus a host of cult shows like Mad Men, Gossip Girl, ER, Gilmore Girls, and Dawson’s Creek. Fortunately for her character, the waitress Shelley Johnson, though, her abusive husband Leo won’t be back.
Since playing Deputy Hawk, one of the most reasoned voices in the sheriff’s office, Michael Horse has gone on to not only appear in shows like Malcolm in the Middle, but pick up a full-on artistic career as a jeweler and painter.
Though Michael Ontkean has maintained his curly head of locks since starring as Sheriff Harry S. Truman, the actor, who last showed up in The Descendants in 2011, has decided to leave Coop hanging and won’t be returning to Twin Peaks.
Lara Flynn Boyle won’t be returning to this season but she’ll always live on as Donna Hayward, Laura’s best friend of sorts who was never short on spectacular sweaters.
Russ Tamblyn‘s daughter Amber has since gone on to become an actor and even director herself, but Tamblyn has kept up an acting career of his own since playing the ever eccentrically-outfitted psychiatrist Dr. Lawrence Jacoby, recently picking up roles in films like Django Unchained.
Like the actor who plays fellow bad boy Bobby Briggs, James Marshall, aka James Hurley, Big Ed’s nephew who can’t get enough of riding his bike, has also gone gray, but still showed up on-screen with a few films and an appearance on CSI.
Like her on-screen daughter, Laura, the grief-stricken Sarah Palmer will be returning for all 18 episodes, although actor Grace Zabriskie has turned up in shows like Charmed and Big Love.
Fittingly, like her beau Sheriff Harry S. Truman, sawmill owner Josie Packard won’t be returning to the series—like fellow mill worker Piper Laurie, aka Catherine Martell, David Lynch apparently never asked her back. But actor Joan Chen has been looking young as ever lately in shows like Netflix’s Marco Polo.
Laura Dern, Naomi Watts, Patricia Arquette, and Hailey Gates Open Up About Working with Legendary Director David Lynch: