Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group

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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby N. Needleman » Fri Mar 23, 2018 6:45 am

Disagree. The first time I saw FWWM over twenty years ago I thought that good-hearted Agent Cooper only told Laura not to take the ring because he was thinking of her life but didn't understand the larger stakes, namely her possession by BOB unless she sacrificed her life by putting it on. Last year, the finale proved this and bore Cooper's hero complex out. Mark Frost himself has talked about Cooper's hero complex at length in post-show interviews.

It also dates back to the original show - his preoccupation with Caroline Earle's death and the circumstances by which he became her protector, lover and then lost her, and then did the same with Annie.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Mon Mar 26, 2018 4:22 am

N. Needleman wrote:Disagree. The first time I saw FWWM over twenty years ago I thought that good-hearted Agent Cooper only told Laura not to take the ring because he was thinking of her life but didn't understand the larger stakes, namely her possession by BOB unless she sacrificed her life by putting it on. Last year, the finale proved this and bore Cooper's hero complex out. Mark Frost himself has talked about Cooper's hero complex at length in post-show interviews.

It also dates back to the original show - his preoccupation with Caroline Earle's death and the circumstances by which he became her protector, lover and then lost her, and then did the same with Annie.


Well, I was going to stay off this forum for a minimum of 6 months until I could get some distance and do a an 18-hour marathon and watch it all as if I were seeing it for the first time, but I just couldn't stay away. I ended up buying a digital copy, in addition to the blu ray which I already own, and am now at Episode 8. It's amazing how on each rewatch I notice something new, and my understanding of the many themes and subthemes grows and I just catch little tidbits I had not noticed on previous watches.

Basically, I think your interpretation is probably what most neatly ties everything together. Laura was sent by the Fireman as a Christ-like figure to stop/defeat BOB and Judy. But the way she would stop them was to basically sacrifice herself, to not give in and to die rather than allow herself to be taken over. Thus, the coupling of BOB and Judy would hit a dead end.

But then Cooper goes into the Black Lodge and this gives the denizens of the Black Lodge a second chance as BOB piggy backs onto Mr. C. So Cooper did have a mission when getting out of the Lodge- to stop Mr. C and destroy BOB. However, Cooper goes one step too far. He thinks by saving Laura he can destroy Judy once and for all, and misunderstands that Laura's role was not to destroy Judy, but more to contain Judy, which she did by dying.

I have basically adopted that interpretation, while recognizing that there is sufficiently enough ambiguity in the story to allow for other interpretations. The key line may leading to that interpretation is the Giant/Fireman telling Cooper his is 'far away.'
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Mon Mar 26, 2018 5:02 am

IcedOver wrote:
eyeboogers wrote:"Fire Walk With Me" has Cooper - on several planes of reality, trying to save Laura Palmer.


That's a bit of a stretch in how it could relate to this show. This show itself gives no specific foreshadowing that trying to save Laura is Cooper's primary purpose; only after the fact do you realize it's one of the "two birds". It's poorly formed ideas and weak construction.


I wouldn't say it's weakly constructed- I would say Lynch and Frost made a deliberate decision to force the viewer to re-watch the original series and FWWM.

In my opinion, the base 'idea' is pulled from multiple mythologies, including Greek mythology, Eastern religions and the Gospels. I believe the Christ story, which is the most well known story in Western society, is the predominant idea in The Return. Although it's turned upside down in the end, as if the writers were wondering what would happen if you went back in time to 'save' Jesus from his horrible fate.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby chromereflectsimage » Wed Mar 28, 2018 6:48 am

IcedOver wrote:I haven't yet read "The Final Dossier" (so don't spoil it please, but I don't have high hopes because of the last book), nor have I rewatched the final two parts in full. However, whether one calls it time travel or believes it was a failed attempt, the idea actually to save Laura comes out of left field. Coop never wanted to save Laura, just catch her killer. Leland just asks him to find her. We don't know what Coop is thinking when Laura removes her face to show she is possibly something more ("the one"?), because the show sheds no light on characters' thoughts. The show just weakly transitions from him trying to get back to reality and stop Mr. C, to him willing to unmake a timeline to save Laura.


I suppose one way to look at it is Cooper acknowledging Mr. C and all his past actions as a part of himself, and this makes him want to go back and undo Laura's murder because if she wasn't killed, he would never have come to Twin Peaks and ended up in the lodge, with his doppelganger emerging.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby LateReg » Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:24 pm

mtwentz wrote:
IcedOver wrote:
eyeboogers wrote:"Fire Walk With Me" has Cooper - on several planes of reality, trying to save Laura Palmer.


That's a bit of a stretch in how it could relate to this show. This show itself gives no specific foreshadowing that trying to save Laura is Cooper's primary purpose; only after the fact do you realize it's one of the "two birds". It's poorly formed ideas and weak construction.


I wouldn't say it's weakly constructed- I would say Lynch and Frost made a deliberate decision to force the viewer to re-watch the original series and FWWM.


Kind of riffing off that...

I almost agree with IcedOver that The Return itself doesn't give any specific foreshadowing plot-wise...except thematically and philosophically the foreshadowing is consistently embedded throughout the show, most overtly in the question asked in Part 2: "Is it future or is it past?" I didn't see it as weak construction, but as unique construction. The entire time, we don't know where the show is going, that is true, but everything still felt natural to me. And I'm on record stating that the plot doesn't matter as much as the themes, or only that the plot only works when fully entangled with the meaning of the piece, forming the actual story; The Return is more of a riff on themes and ideas and mood, psychologically mapped onto the screen, equally representing and blurring the internal and external of the characters' and creators' worlds. I was also always one of the people mostly withholding judgment until I had seen all 18 hours, because there really was no way of knowing what exactly Lynch/Frost were getting at until then, much like a film can't be judged until the whole is seen.

The way it works, imo, is in reverse or with hindsight. Once you see the end, then you apply that to the beginning, and you see everything in a different light; The Return was quite a ride, but I didn't truly relax and settle into it until I pressed play on my 18-hour binge two days after the season ended, during which I was astounded by how natural everything felt and how it all seemed to make perfect sense BECAUSE of the finale, which is what clicked everything into place for me. And, similarly, to echo what mtwentz started to get at, if you watch the original series and, I assume, Fire Walk With Me again you'll also see things differently. I'm on my first complete rewatch right now, and it is fascinating how differently I interpret certain elements of the original series, especially relating to Cooper. It's so interesting to pick up on snatches of conversation and think about what those lines meant to Lynch/Frost. It's like seeing something that was always hidden...or, if you want to be cynical about it, like you can no longer see clearly because of a more recent interpretation of the character. Regardless, it works that way.

I also just wanted to comment on Part 17. I've never understood the hatred for it I see here and there. Even if you take it as Lynch erasing the original series, that fits in with The Return's themes of the danger of revisiting the past; Lynch/Frost are not condoning the idea. Now, if Part 18 just showed a shiny happy town as I feared it might have, then changing the past would have been taking the easy way out. But Part 18 proved that they weren't interested in the typical time travel tropes, and it made clear - at least tonally - that something had gone seriously wrong. For those reasons, I don't understand how someone could hate it, since it A. perfectly fits with the themes of the series and B. is an action that is meant to be viewed as negative. Plus, the original series still exists to lead up to that point in Part 17.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Strawberry » Wed Mar 28, 2018 1:10 pm

eyeboogers wrote:Everyone has the right to express their informed opinion. If f.ex. you are an experienced reviewer, film scholar, director, screenwriter etc. it gives your opinion a heck of a lot more weight than those just expressing their gut feeling. Everyone is not as "right" as others when it comes to art. Some people don't see the forest for the trees, because they are not trained to do so.

But it's art, so it really is all about gut feeling. This isn't science or engineering. There's no rule book, nor is there any standard.

The audience performs their own intuitive, emotional response to art. If they choose to further dissect their reaction and share it with others, so be it, but the relationship between artist and audience requires no training. There appears to be a tinge of elitism in what you're saying, as though reactions that are not of either academic or institutional origin can be devalued and disregarded, or at the very least regarded with less significance than the critically appraised dissections.

That seems rather unlike the sort of thing that an artist like David Lynch would encourage. I'm guessing he's more of a two party, single layer relationship kind of guy when it comes to this stuff.

Single layer relationship: Artist and Audience - Someone creates an emotional work, and then someone else receives it and experiences their own emotional reaction.

Infinite layer relationship: Artist, Audience, Critic, and Qualifier(s) - This multi-layer relationship seems like the beginning of endless layers of certification, if you think about it. I say this because for someone to reside in the position of "worthy critic", doesn't it imply that a higher authority has deemed them qualified to critique? Who decides whether or not a person sufficiently meets the expectations for this role? And who in turn decides whether the qualifier is qualified to qualify the critic at all?

As to your claim that I have not thought this through, perhaps you are right to some degree, as I've spent my life and energy on creating art instinctively, without regard for critical dissection or analysis. The reception of art is intertwined with personal views, feelings, and opinions, and while I'm always open to seeing something from a new perspective, the idea that one could convince me that something is bad when I feel that it is good, or vice versa, is doubtful.

My simple perspective on this could be boiled down to: "One does not require training when it comes to art, for it is emotional and purely subjective."

Your example regarding feeling ill and seeking out a plumber versus a doctor does not apply. Engineers must be trained to build structurally sound buildings, and surgeons must be trained on safe and effective procedures. Of course one does not hire an architect to heal the sick, doesn't that go without saying? In the context of this discussion, we are not talking about who is fit for the role of architect, but whether or not we think the architect's building is beautiful or hideous.

What you seem to be implying is that one must set aside their natural and intuitive reaction in order to supplement it with a learned one, and that does not make a good case for your argument, because in relation to Twin Peaks Season 3, you could be seen as saying, "Those who love it have the correct reaction as they are informed, while those who do not simply don't have the training to properly appraise it".

This is potentially in line with the many statements made in Season 3's defense that amount to: "If you don't like it you don't get it".
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:51 am

KnewItsPa wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:I have no desire to tell anyone else how they should feel about the show, but if nothing else, I think this interview should dispel the idea that L/F half-assed this season, or could have “tried harder,” as you say.


There are different types of trying, perhaps Lynch could have tried harder by not allowing it to become a bloated egofest, letting go control and perhaps opening up to a wider world.

Wonder what Engels, Peyton and the original collaborators thought of it.


I'll bet they thought it was high art, like most of the critics thought of it.

Season 3 can be open to criticism, especially with deliberate choices that were made story wise. But it's hard to argue that Lynch did not break boundaries once again with some of the most visually and auditorily compelling scenes on television ever. The Purple Room, the 'White Lodge', the Black Lodge, the Evolution of the Arm, Buella's place, Gotta Light, etc.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Kilmoore » Thu Mar 29, 2018 12:13 pm

mtwentz wrote:Season 3 can be open to criticism, especially with deliberate choices that were made story wise. But it's hard to argue that Lynch did not break boundaries once again with some of the most visually and auditorily compelling scenes on television ever. The Purple Room, the 'White Lodge', the Black Lodge, the Evolution of the Arm, Buella's place, Gotta Light, etc.

Then he should have painted a picture, or done short video clips of this art. The complete incoherence of the story and empty characters just point out how pretentious and futile this "art" is. What people wanted was a Twin Peaks story, but Lynch took the money and ran, putting out a couple of bits of artistic vision in a hollow shell.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Thu Mar 29, 2018 12:26 pm

mtwentz wrote:
KnewItsPa wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:I have no desire to tell anyone else how they should feel about the show, but if nothing else, I think this interview should dispel the idea that L/F half-assed this season, or could have “tried harder,” as you say.


There are different types of trying, perhaps Lynch could have tried harder by not allowing it to become a bloated egofest, letting go control and perhaps opening up to a wider world.

Wonder what Engels, Peyton and the original collaborators thought of it.


I'll bet they thought it was high art, like most of the critics thought of it.


Peyton around the time of Part 9 praised the show overall and admired L/F’s approach to the material and DKL’s direction (which is nice of him considering that DKL reportedly treated him rather poorly), but he expressed frustration with the lack of time spent with original series characters. However, he said he was confident that the original series characters would be integrated into the narrative. It would be interesting to hear if the way things panned out ended up satisfying him.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:35 pm

I totally forgot this (terrific) TPU podcast exists, with Peyton talking about S3 (it’s right at the beginning of the podcast): http://twinpeaksunwrapped.podbean.com/mobile/e/twin-peaks-unwrapped-122-harley-peyton/

He at one point calls the show worlds beyond what anyone else is doing in television and is generally praising of it as an overall work, but also expresses a lot of conflicted/mixed feelings (some of which he blames on his own expectations of wanting to see the old characters more). He praises Part 17 and in particular the repurposing of the Pilot footage (which he interprets as an Orpheus-inspired “act of imperfect heroism,” not a straight retcon, consistent with what many on this thread have been saying in defense of the scene). However, he is heavily critical of some moments of “David going off on a walkabout,” and particularly seems to really dislike all of Part 18, feeling that Part 17 would have been a much better ending. (At one point, he dismissively says he thinks sometimes DKL gets stuck in a narrative cul de sac and says, “fuck it, scream.”)
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:19 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:I totally forgot this (terrific) TPU podcast exists, with Peyton talking about S3 (it’s right at the beginning of the podcast): http://twinpeaksunwrapped.podbean.com/mobile/e/twin-peaks-unwrapped-122-harley-peyton/

He at one point calls the show worlds beyond what anyone else is doing in television and is generally praising of it as an overall work, but also expresses a lot of conflicted/mixed feelings (some of which he blames on his own expectations of wanting to see the old characters more). He praises Part 17 and in particular the repurposing of the Pilot footage (which he interprets as an Orpheus-inspired “act of imperfect heroism,” not a straight retcon, consistent with what many on this thread have been saying in defense of the scene). However, he is heavily critical of some moments of “David going off on a walkabout,” and particularly seems to really dislike all of Part 18, feeling that Part 17 would have been a much better ending. (At one point, he dismissively says he thinks sometimes DKL gets stuck in a narrative cul de sac and says, “fuck it, scream.”)


Peyton's thoughts aren't too far from my own. I like Ep. 17 better than Ep. 18 as well and when the ending first aired, it was a punch in the gut to me on many levels.

since then, I've embraced the ending in all its delicious ambiguity. However, I still am not totally hip with the Cooper-Diane motel scene. If it had been the character of Annie or Audrey, I might have liked it better.

But I love the return to the Black Lodge scene, the diner scene, and the final scene at the Palmer/Tremond house.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:29 am

I think the sex scene, in addition to being a brilliant piece of skin-crawlingly disturbing filmmaking (and IMO one of the most powerful scenes in TR), is integral to the equation for the audience to intuitively understand that all the different Coopers are one and that our Cooper is on some level carrying all of Mr. C’s sins with him. I don’t disagree that it would have been even more effective with Audrey, but real world practical concerns made that pretty unlikely. The use of identity subversion and facelessness in Diane’s arc makes this version of the scene potent in its own right.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby LateReg » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:25 am

mtwentz wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:I totally forgot this (terrific) TPU podcast exists, with Peyton talking about S3 (it’s right at the beginning of the podcast): http://twinpeaksunwrapped.podbean.com/mobile/e/twin-peaks-unwrapped-122-harley-peyton/

He at one point calls the show worlds beyond what anyone else is doing in television and is generally praising of it as an overall work, but also expresses a lot of conflicted/mixed feelings (some of which he blames on his own expectations of wanting to see the old characters more). He praises Part 17 and in particular the repurposing of the Pilot footage (which he interprets as an Orpheus-inspired “act of imperfect heroism,” not a straight retcon, consistent with what many on this thread have been saying in defense of the scene). However, he is heavily critical of some moments of “David going off on a walkabout,” and particularly seems to really dislike all of Part 18, feeling that Part 17 would have been a much better ending. (At one point, he dismissively says he thinks sometimes DKL gets stuck in a narrative cul de sac and says, “fuck it, scream.”)


Peyton's thoughts aren't too far from my own. I like Ep. 17 better than Ep. 18 as well and when the ending first aired, it was a punch in the gut to me on many levels.

since then, I've embraced the ending in all its delicious ambiguity. However, I still am not totally hip with the Cooper-Diane motel scene. If it had been the character of Annie or Audrey, I might have liked it better.

But I love the return to the Black Lodge scene, the diner scene, and the final scene at the Palmer/Tremond house.


I like 17 and 18, but I like 18 a lot more as an ending. Despite its ambiguity, it's 18 that really brought all the themes together and tied everything into a neat little bow, relatively speaking. One major theme is identity, and the sex scene is a huge part of driving that home. As Reindeer notes, I think the sex scene is a brilliantly disturbing thing. I don't know that it would have been more effective with Audrey or Annie, because while we the viewer know them, Cooper has known Diane for a far longer period of time than either Audrey (a month?) or Annie (a week?) has. Diane knows him better than anyone, which is something that The Return focused on throughout its 18 hours, and that's part of what makes that scene so effective, that the person who knows him best either can't recognize him or is seeing that he's a mix of all the good and bad things she's blocked out and is literally trying to block out as her trauma (another focal point) comes flooding back. Furthermore, the meta-element of McLachlan reteaming with Dern, the young lovers from Blue Velvet explicitly referenced by Lynch in the making of feature, is a consummation 30 years in the making. From my point of view, that contributes to the scene's power.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:49 am

LateReg wrote:I like 17 and 18, but I like 18 a lot more as an ending. Despite its ambiguity, it's 18 that really brought all the themes together and tied everything into a neat little bow, relatively speaking. One major theme is identity, and the sex scene is a huge part of driving that home. As Reindeer notes, I think the sex scene is a brilliantly disturbing thing. I don't know that it would have been more effective with Audrey or Annie, because while we the viewer know them, Cooper has known Diane for a far longer period of time than either Audrey (a month?) or Annie (a week?) has. Diane knows him better than anyone, which is something that The Return focused on throughout its 18 hours, and that's part of what makes that scene so effective, that the person who knows him best either can't recognize him or is seeing that he's a mix of all the good and bad things she's blocked out and is literally trying to block out as her trauma (another focal point) comes flooding back. Furthermore, the meta-element of McLachlan reteaming with Dern, the young lovers from Blue Velvet explicitly referenced by Lynch in the making of feature, is a consummation 30 years in the making. From my point of view, that contributes to the scene's power.


All good points. I think the counterargument for the scene being potentially more effective with Audrey is that the audience has way more history with her, even if Cooper doesn’t. While Cooper may have a far longer history with Diane, we just met her as a character whereas we’ve been invested in Audrey and her friendship with Dale for 25 years. And I think her youth when Cooper raped her and robbed her of her innocence makes that the more heinous and poignant of the two violations. Personally, I think the scene would have probably been even more horrifying with Audrey. In a way, that might have been too painful a scene for the audience. But you make good points about the scene as it stands, and I certainly think it works terrifically for those reasons. I definitely think it would be way less meaningful with Annie because we don’t have any reason to believe Cooper ever violated her, so that would defeat a large part of the scene’s effectiveness.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Fall_of_Sophia » Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:00 am

Kilmoore wrote:
mtwentz wrote:Season 3 can be open to criticism, especially with deliberate choices that were made story wise. But it's hard to argue that Lynch did not break boundaries once again with some of the most visually and auditorily compelling scenes on television ever. The Purple Room, the 'White Lodge', the Black Lodge, the Evolution of the Arm, Buella's place, Gotta Light, etc.

Then he should have painted a picture, or done short video clips of this art. The complete incoherence of the story and empty characters just point out how pretentious and futile this "art" is. What people wanted was a Twin Peaks story, but Lynch took the money and ran, putting out a couple of bits of artistic vision in a hollow shell.



Who cares what the "people" want?

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