Wednesday, January 12, 2011


David Lynch accomplishes something rare in the second season premiere, which is difficult to describe with words but we will attempt to anyway. The pilot episode of Twin Peaks had a somber cadence in spite of its strong and powerful narrative. To an extent, the episodes not directed by David Lynch tend to feel a little sped up by comparison. Some important moments tend to get glossed over more than they should be without Lynch's sense of rhythm setting the pace. But in this episode, Lynch pulls back ever so gently on the reins, steadying the ride for all of us.

While Visiting Shelly at the Hospital, Norma Sees Ed's Concern for Nadine
After the Failed Suicide Attempt the Night Before
Ed Feels Guilty About Nadine's Suicide Attempt and Wants her to Survive
his Imminent Break Up so he Can Return to Norma Eventually
Nadine's Suicide Attempt Will Trigger a Form of Selective Amnesia, Another
Staple of the Soap Opera Genre
Do not misinterpret our praise for Lynch's direction with criticism over the other directors in the series. Few if any TV series have ever utilized such a wide array of talented directors. These separate and distinct voices helped add variety and dimensions to the story that were vital to Twin Peaks' success. But as Kyle MacLachlan mentioned in his quote ending last week's article, there was something magical that took place whenever Mark Frost and David Lynch were directing episodes that freed them to give their best performances.
David Lynch and Mark Frost
The co-creators helped the actors bring to life their unique vision of the series in powerful ways. Like in the following scene of Major Briggs having an impromptu discussion with his son Bobby when they encounter each other at the diner in the video clip below. Few people would have directed such a seemingly simple and subtle scene with as much restraint and pathos. There is something delicate in Lynch's approach with the material that makes it transcend into another strata of storytelling.

Major Briggs's Vision

Like Episode 1, Bobby is Smoking Again to the Displeasure of Major Briggs,
But the Major Ignores this and Simply Invites Bobby Over to his Table
Bobby Decides to Accept his Father's Invitation and Puts Out the Cigarette
Before Sitting Down. Bobby and Major Briggs are Avoiding Confrontation
After Some Small Talk, Major Briggs Asks if he May Recount the Events of
a Vision he had Last Night, as Distinguished from a Basic Dream
Bobby Agrees and Listens Carefully, Picturing his Father's Words in his Mind
What began in the pilot as a very troubled relationship between Bobby and the Major has now transformed into something greater. Father and son bond together in this beautiful, elegantly simple sequence. This scene is one of the most powerful scenes in all of Twin Peaks and it almost feels like the creators of LOST (2004-10) later adapted their entire series with this one scene in mind at the heart of their own show.

Agent Cooper Lays Out the Narrative of the Night of Laura's Murder According
to the Evidence he and the Sheriff's Department has Assembled Together
This Scene Helps Summarize Everything We Have Learned About Laura
Palmer's Murder Up to this Point in the Series
Albert Rosenfeild Chimes in with the Results of his Forensic Findings
And the Camera Slowly Pans Across the Table Full of Donuts
Beginning with Agent Cooper's Favorite, a Jelly Donut
And We Pan Across Laura's Final Hours

Ending on Deputy Andy Holding Laura's Prom Picture in his Hand
Andy Breaks Down in Tears Once More
Prompting a Snide Remark from Albert
Andy has had Enough of Albert's Attitude and Warns Albert to Shut his Mouth
Lucy's Strained Relationship with Andy Seems Benefited by Andy Standing
Up for Himself and Not Feeling Shame for his Feelings
Albert Surprisingly Seems a Little Humbled by this Straight Forward Rebuke
Everyone in the Room Shares Andy's Sentiments
Agent Cooper Solemnly Pronounces that Everyone Closely Involved with
Laura at Jacques's Cabin on the Night of her Murder are Dead or in Comas
Except for the Killer Himself, Who is Still at Large
It is rather remarkable to see how far we have come along in the investigation of Laura's Murder. We have covered an amazing amount of ground, but there are still some missing pieces of the puzzle. The big picture is forming nicely though and the identity of the killer is close to being discovered. As the video clips for the Saturday Night Live skit and Donahue guest appearance shown in our last article indicates, most people in the audience were convinced Leo Johnson or Ben Horne committed the murder. There were some other popular theories, but with Leo Johnson dismissed in this episode because he was locked away in a jail in Hungry Horse, Montana on the night of Teresa Banks murder, most people's attention is shifting toward Ben Horne.

Ben and Jerry Horne are Debriefed on the Incomplete Assassination Attempt
on Leo Johnson's Life by their Hired Gun Hank Jennings
Hank Seems a Little Too Interested in the Horne Brothers' Strategy to Deal
with the Results of the Sawmill Fire and Leo's Coma
Ben and Jerry are Not Pleased with How Informal and Familiar Hank has
Become with them and a Strain on their Relationship is Obvious
Audrey is Summoned to Blackie's Office to Explain Why She was Stand-Offish
with the Owner the Night Before
To Cover for her Behavior, Audrey Says, "He's not my type."
Blackie Mistakenly Construes Audrey's Statement as a Declaration of Homosexuality
Troubled by Blackie's Uncomfortable Overtures, Audrey Adds that Blackie
is Not Audrey's Type Either
Blackie is Not Amused and Orders Audrey to be Held at One-Eyed Jacks
Against her Will Until she is More Cooperative

Ben Horne's web of intrigue is becoming far more tangled than he knows. His daughter is imprisoned at his secret brothel across the border without his knowledge. A daughter that he unknowingly attempted to sleep with while she was incognito. If that is not enough, now Ben's employee Hank is getting some unhealthy aspirations in Ben's increasingly lucrative business ventures. And it appears that Agent Cooper is close to unraveling Ben Horne's involvement in his investigation of Laura's murder. But Ben is blissfully unaware of these dangers as he blissfully continues walking along a precarious ledge.

Twin Peaks Delves into Many Elements of Traditional American Culture
that Have Become a Bit More Rare in Typical Everyday Life Now
Like the Haywards Inviting the Palmers Over for a Dinner with Exhibition of
the Different Family Member's Talents
You will recognize Alicia Roanne Witt in the above photo as one of the rarely seen Hayward girls. You will recognize Witt from her role as Alia, the young Bene Gesserit adept sister of Kyle MacLachlan's character Paul Atreides. Everything seems calm at the Hayward residence until Leland has one of his compulsions to sing and dance again, effectively ending their pleasant evening when he collapses from an apparent apoplectic fit. Leland is a long way from being well.

Leland Sings at the Hayward Household

Harriet Hayward, Donna's Younger Sister from the Pilot Returns to the Show
this Episode to Read her Poem About Laura
Gersten Hayward Treats the Palmer's to Some Classical Music as they Dine
Leland is Very Touched by Harriet's Poem
David Lynch Makes Conspicuous Use of the Sumptuous Meal in this Scene
After Leland Discusses his Hair Suddenly Turning White, He Gets Up to Sing
Gersten Accompanies Leland and Plays the Tune "Get Happy" at his Request

Meanwhile, poor Audrey is in over her head at One-Eyed Jacks. She desperately whispers a prayer to Agent Cooper, hoping to reach out to him in some way. Although rather humorous, her sincerity and desperation is touching and is a fine example of Sherilyn Fenn's impressive ability to capture a unique comedic tone, especially while under the direction of David Lynch.
Audrey's Prayer
David Lynch is particularly talented at helping an audience feel what are normally conflicting emotions at the same time. We laugh at Audrey's child-like crush on Cooper and her attempt to reach out to him. But we also feel horrible, knowing that Audrey is in a position that no woman should ever have to find herself. When Lynch makes us laugh, it is rarely at a character's expense. Lynch's humor forms around our ability to empathize with the absurdity the character encounters.
The Giant from the Beginning of the Episode Returns, Waving his Hand
Over Cooper's Eyes Three Times Before he Awakes
The Giant Informs Cooper that the Things He Says Will Not Be Wrong
The Giant Explains that Multiple People have Seen Bob in Spirit But Only
One has Seen his Body and she Will Awake Soon
The Giant Explains that Cooper has Forgotten Something and then Departs

>>>>>>>>>>SPOILER WARNING<<<<<<<<<<
(Important Details About Laura's Killer Follows)

In case anyone forgot we are watching a TV series created by a legendary horror director, then Ronette's awakening in the hospital and subsequent flashback to Laura's murder serves as an important reminder. This scene also helps foreshadow a horrific scene yet to take place in the series, as if Lynch is preparing the viewers for the ultimate conclusion this story has been heading for since the pilot.
When this episode first aired, the ending to this episode frustrated some viewers who mistakenly expected to discover the identity of Laura's killer. The network mistakenly advertised the second season premiere as the episode finally revealing who murdered Laura Palmer.
It would be easy to mistake this as the scene revealing Laura's killer for anyone unfamiliar with the developing Bob mythos, but most observant viewers realized from the Giant's preceding conversation with Cooper that Bob is not a corporeal entity. Bob would be incapable of performing the murder alone without the assistance of someone in the flesh. A main character from the series is responsible for killing Laura, even if that person was influenced by Bob.
Ronette Remembers the Murder
Next week we will analyze Twin Peaks Episode 9. All episodes can be found in an excellent box set: Twin Peaks - The Definitive Gold Box Edition. Twin Peaks can also be found in 720p HD format at the iTunes Store. Many of the episodes can be viewed in lower definition at IMDBCBS, and Fancast.

Ray Wise Interview

Previous Article
Next Article

Note: Any purchase made via our web store, or through the product links scattered throughout the article, will contribute a small portion to the running of this site and the payment of this article's author. Thank you for your support.

247086_TV episodes & movies instantly streaming from Netflix. Start your FREE trial!

No comments:

Post a Comment