“Harry, I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it. Don’t wait for it. Just let it happen. It could be a new shirt at the men’s store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good, hot black coffee.”
And what a gift have we got. Back after 25 years, we have eighteen new episodes of Twin Peaks, and after a month of heavy procrastination following my first review, I am here to review episodes three and four.
Following on from episodes one and two, these remain as the ominous and mysterious Twin Peaks everyone knows and loves. I described the first two episodes as more like the Eraserhead style of David Lynch, but once these episodes bring us out of the Black Lodge, it becomes much more familiar with the original show’s style.
Continuing on from last time, we follow Cooper’s journey in escaping the Black Lodge, and presumably the rest of the show following his journey back to Twin Peaks. The episode picks off where we left him, falling through space as he finds himself in a metal building where two women appear to protect him on his journey to escape the Black Lodge, and after seeing a vision of Major Garland Briggs, escapes through an electrical plug.
It sounds silly when you write it down, but one of the things about Twin Peaks is that part of its genius is in making silly ideas work. The best writers can make anything fit a style, regardless of its absurdity, and Lynch and Frost excel at doing this. Not many shows can blend a nightmarish dark horror style with a quirky small town cast of characters. And even more so, few writers could be able to go back and pull it off again 25 years later.
While Mr C becomes sick and is captured by the FBI, the real Cooper escapes from the Black Lodge into a man called Dougie Jones, yet another doppelganger of himself. We learn from MIKE that he has been manufactured by someone for this purpose and that either he or the remaining doppelganger must die. Brought to Las Vegas by Dougie’s companion, Cooper plays slot machines in a disoriented state, winning every jackpot when he sees visions of the Black Lodge above them. He’s eventually brought to Dougie’s home where we leave him off for this episode.
Back in Twin Peaks, Hawk, Lucy, Andy, a now Deputy Bobby Briggs, and the new Sheriff Frank Truman look through the clues of the original Twin Peaks case to discover what is missing, learning that Cooper was the last person to see Major Briggs alive. Here we’re also introduced to Michael Cera’s new character, Wally Brando, who turns out to be Andy and Lucy’s son. He’s the most bizarre thing in this and that’s saying something considering I’ve already talked about a man escaping a building in space through an electrical plug. Wally arrives into town to pay respects to his godfather, the now sick Harry Truman while being in a constant state of impersonating Marlon Brando. It’s a wacky performance and to be honest I cannot fathom thoughts of what I think about it. I genuinely don’t know what to make of it. It is insane. The entire concept of Wally Brando has blown my mind.
Back with the FBI, after getting a brief but nice reunion scene with Denise Bryson, Gordon, Albert and Tamara Preston (a new character that will be familiar to those who read Secret History of Twin Peaks) go to interrogate Mr C. In his alibi, Mr C mentions Philip Jeffries (David Bowie’s character in Fire Walk With Me) which will be very interesting to see how that evolves. But eventually, Gordon comes to the conclusion that they cannot tell if he is the real Cooper and that they have to go find a woman who can tell if it is.
Who could it be? Audrey? Diane? Annie? Denise? (I already know who it is. Twitter has ruined it for me. But that’s what I get for procrastinating a review for an entire month.)
I enjoyed the first two episodes because of their more horror style and tone, but I also enjoyed these episodes for a different reason. I think these episodes do a great job of showcasing Kyle MacLachlan’s acting range. Going from regular Cooper to Cooper in a disoriented state to Dougie Jones to Mr C, he nails all of these roles and makes them completely unique from each other. I’ve always found his portrayal of Cooper as one of my personal favourite portrayals of a character in a TV show and I find it both surprising and excellent to see him be allowed to show his unique range here.