I sat and watched the pilot yesterday, after finding myself in a very Peaksy mood, and nothing else was going to cut it. It has been wonderful reading through this thread with the episode fresh in my mind.
Although I see myself as a lifelong fan of TP, and have seen it countless amounts of times, I do class myself as someone who pays much more attention to the feel/story of the show, and some of the forensic details of what's on screen, and indeed in the soundtrack/design, can often pass me by. With that in mind, I did however have some thoughts of my own whilst I was watching that I felt obliged to jot down, for myself initially; but I also felt like it would be nice to share a couple of random thoughts I had whilst watching.
First and foremost, is the aura of the Pacific Northwest. It suits this world down to the ground. Even though it was only really filmed here for this episode, and FWWM, I can't help but think of the dark and wet colours of the pilot whenever Peaks comes to mind. It is so ominous, mysterious, spiritual, and moody, yet breathtakingly beautiful, unique, and enchanting. I am still yet to visit, despite setting the intention way back in my teens. Now I'm nearing my forties, I think it's time to say now or never and book a flight, once all this current business washes over!
I made a note of Josie's seemingly altruistic act of closing the mill down for the day in light of the morning's events. Unfortunately, much like Cooper the morning after his dream, I'm unsure of what exactly I was getting at. I do find her character fascinating. She was most definitely written as a femme fatale, but because the character either falls short of the vicious side in the writing, or Chen doesn't quite hit the mark, the sweeter side of her seems to shine much brighter earlier on in the show, especially in her interactions with good ol' Pete. I can't quite see what she sets to gain, on a selfish level, from pulling the plug at the mill. It's quite a nice "moment's silence" type way of showing solidarity with the community, and the only thing I can think of that would make it not quite the selfless act it seems, is that it could perhaps show an upper hand over Catherine. However, Josie herself states that she could have taken that kind of authority several times before, and never has, so it's like it doesn't suit her character to be that way, although as later events show, she's capable of far worse. Like I say... a fascinating character, despite not being one of my favourites.
Lynch's reflection in the glass during Pete's phone call to Truman is definitely one of those things you can't 'unsee' once you notice it!
The old man who spots Ronette on the railway line utters one of my favourite lines from The Cowboy and the Frenchman, and it's even delivered in the same manner: "What the hell?" I know it's a common enough phrase of course, but I like to see a connection there in my head.
The wide shots of both the school and hospital corridors are iconic to me. I remember the look of the slowly creeping shot down the school, combined with the principal's announcement over the speaker, absolutely gutting me when I was younger. More than Sarah/Leland crying, more than Donna's or James's reactions, or anything else, that just filled me to the brim with sadness, even as a kid. The usually teeming space now empty as the news of the death echoes off the walls over the brooding synth of LP's theme, still gives me goosebumps to this day.
Cooper. The man we absolutely love to love. He has a very aloof side to him in the pilot, which i always took issue with, but I've actually come to love now. The way he stands Harry still to set the record straight "off the bat", his slight snap at Jacoby, his sarcasm when interrogating Bobby including his crushing blow at the end, his manner with the doctor looking after Ronette, etc. None of this I could see happening after Episode 1. It's like the charming, child-like enthusiasm ("snowshoe rabbit...") that came alongside this slightly colder side won the writers over, and they went with it full throttle. I don't know if they were going for the superhero trope of having a slightly flawed or darker side to him at the beginning, but it's something I enjoy upon re-watching for some reason, and something that perhaps contributes to his fate in the Black Lodge at the end of the second season.
That's all I really have, for now. I loved diving back into the world again, and got very engrossed in the story/emotions like old times. I may bore you all with thoughts on other episodes soon.