Twin Peaks: The Return, Part Seven

“No, nothing urgent.”

Let’s start by talking about that scene, huh?

After weeks of waiting for the real Dale Cooper to please stand up, we seem to have gotten what we wished for: Coop—or should we still call him Dougie?—acted like a true force for good, a real Bookhouse Boy, when he took down the ice-pick assassin. It was cathartic violence, all the more so because Coop-as-Dougie has been so passive.

But, if I may speak for you as well as for me, I wonder if we should be as excited as we are. Dougie’s actions were instinctive, at first, and then directed by a miniature version of The Arm. Dougie didn’t know how to win the fight; the arm had to tell him to squeeze the assassin’s hand. It was good advice—doing so tightened Ike’s hand around the gun so that, when he fired one more time, a piece of his skin was left behind. Hooray for DNA.

And hooray for The Arm, who did most of the thinking there. As with Dougie’s ability to select winning slot machines and detect insurance scams, he’s following instructions but not thinking his way through problems yet. In other words, although my initial impulse was delight that Coop was coming back, the more I have thought about that scene the less faith I have in its significance.

I am more interested in the pages from Laura Palmer’s diary that Hawk found in the restroom in Part Six. Those three pages are likely the thing that is “missing” (Laura’s diary was a fun tie-in paratext during the show’s original run), and the reference to the Lodge should make sense to Hawk, linked as it is to “his heritage.”

That there are three pages may be significant, too. This was an episode of threes: three missing dog legs, the three Detectives Fusco (a reference to Person of Interest?), the three diary pages, and the third Renault brother, Jean-Michel, who is played by Walter Olkewicz, the same actor who played Jacques Renault (killed by Leland in the first series).

I mention the repetition of threes because I wonder if we should think of Cooper not in terms of dopplegangers (EvilCoop vs DougieCoop) but in terms of triplegangers. (Yes, I’m sure that’s not a real word, and I’m pretty sure I’ve made this joke somewhere else, anyway).

Then again, perhaps we should stick with dopplegangers. Forensic science has proved that EvilCoop is the opposite of RealCoop: his ring-fingerprint is reversed. Why did EvilCoop give Gordon Cole and Albert a clue to that reversal last week, with his greeting of “I’m yrev, very happy to see you again, old friend”? Maybe EvilCoop is trolling the good guys.

Unnecessarily, since the good guys are gradually realizing that something is wrong. Hawk and Sheriff Truman are stumbling slowly towards understanding. Gordon Cole and Albert are on the case: surely they will go to Twin Peaks soon. Perhaps there they will discover Coop’s old room key (now in Ben Horne’s possession). Maybe Diane will go with them; I’d love to see what she makes of the Double R’s pie and coffee.

I would also love to see how the body of Major Briggs fits into all of this. Right now, there appears to be a serious lack of communication between local law enforcement, the FBI, and the military: we have three sets of do-gooders all working the same case, but not all of them are aware of the case’s true nature, its urgency, or its parameters.

Diane’s anguish is pushing Cole and Albert in the right direction, I think, and I am vaguely optimistic that Dougie’s participation in the fight will bring his visage to the attention of someone who will recognize it as Cooper’s face. EvilCoop’s escape might help, too.

But if these different groups don’t start talking soon, the World’s Scariest Walker might start doing whatever such things do. And that makes me incredibly nervous:

Damn Good Coffee:

• Doc Hayward (played by Mark Frost’s father, Warren Frost) was a welcome sight. Warren Frost passed away earlier this year.

• The number of actors who passed away before this show made it to air is really freaking me out.

• There are some guns that, if not held in a very specific way, can take a chunk of someone’s skin. I learned that from mystery novels.

• Classic Lynch moment that I didn’t have room for in the review: the frightening shot of the empty shed at the house of the man Deputy Andy visited. Of course, I have no idea how that fits into anything at all, so law enforcement isn’t the only entity in a state of ignorance.

• So, on the spectrum of boring to fascinating, where would you place the two-minute shot of someone sweeping a floor?

Josie Kafka is a full-time cat servant and part-time rogue demon hunter. (What's a rogue demon?)


Thomas Ijon Tichy said...

Well, to put it short, this was definitely the most thrilling installment so far.

Anonymous said...

Awesome review. The triplegangers vs dopplegangers idea is wonderful. The Military is not a do-gooder like Gordon Cole's FBI team and Twin Peaks law enforcement are. And the Arm cannot exactly be cheered for. The Arm wanted Dougie-Coop to literally squeeze the assassin’s hand off (he's an amputated appendage after all), and Good Coop stopped short of that. The Arm is enthralled by violence (ref. Twin Peaks Fire Walk With Me).