Twin Peaks (1990–1991)
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Ben Horne is well developed; the Civil War stuff fails to amuse quite as it should, yet once he is rehabilitated, the change in his character is refreshing and nicely handled. Twin Peaks is a beautiful series aesthetically, from the wonderful titles sequence, Angelo Badalamenti's stunningly evocative music scores to some wonderfully innovative photography and direction - usually in those episodes helmed by Lynch. Got to say the female quota of Twin Peaks is ample, with the beauty of Madchen Amick, Sheryl Lee, Lara Flynn Boyle and especially Sherilyn Fenn, adding poignancy. General negative comments seem irrelevant considering the overall quality of the series, but it's true tricks were missed. With the characters they had, some more imaginative situations and wit wouldn't have gone amiss. The comic possibilities of having Jerry Horne and, say, Gordon Cole interacting were unfulfilled. Some of the characters were bland - the spotless Norma Jennings, James Hurley, Audrey's boyfriend in the later episodes - and some failed to really work - Nadine I feel added little to the series.
The very final episode is, I would say, as good a series ending as they could have come up with; tantalisingly placed, as the battle between the good and evil forces in Twin Peaks is hotting up. I declare that there are some brilliant images and directorial touches in that final one. There were however loose ends untied; what happened to Leo, Audrey and especially Ben Horne and Doc Hayward? A moot point is the absurdity of its ill-availabilty on video; I wouldn't have caught it if it weren't for the Sci-Fi Channel UK. Got to say though, that while harbouring some fantastical elements, Twin Peaks is assuredly far from the realm of Sci-Fi. It is, to be pointless categorical, like a surreal soap opera with a strong flavour of its own. There are so many great scenes, moments, lines and nuances, coupled with a magnificently dreamy, tenderly moving atmosphere when at its best, that I must say Twin Peaks ranks pretty much up there with the finest TV dramas of all - Edge of Darkness & The Singing Detective. Majestic it is. Rating:- ***** (out of *****)
Daring and provocative, it shattered the boundaries of most standard soap operas/TV dramas.
Terrified of it by a child (and in particular by BOB) I have since returned to it on DVD, only to find myself just as terrified and intrigued by it as I was when I was twelve years old and crouching behind my late grandmother's couch.
A piece of groundbreaking television history... WATCH IT
For starters, Agent Cooper is the single greatest character ever captured on film (go ahead, try and think of a better one). He's brilliant, genuinely caring, incredibly funny, exuberant to the nth degree, unbelievably likable, but also with a sordid past which haunts him. Nobody, but nobody, could have delivered the pie and coffee compliments with so much gusto.
However, he is just the brightest star in the sky. There are so many crazy, yet somehow believable characters that grace Lynch's universe. The swift descent of Ben Horn into madness is sad, pathetic, surreal and hilarious. No other series would have dared contain a man believing that he was General Lee commanding the south at Gettysburg (it also provides the funniest line from the show, when Audrey Horn is talking to his psychiatrist and he remarks that "What he (Ben Horn) needs now is our sympathy, understanding and a confederate victory."). All of the characters create a amazing tapestry where one is genuinely anticipating which character is going to lose it somehow (but one never anticipates correctly). In this reviewers opinion, the plot takes a backseat to the characters which are too strange, or too ordinary but never dull, to exist in any other show anywhere (minus James, who gets irritating right when he starts singing and never stops). Fantastic actors all around with more career launching cameos than any show or movie ever.
Sadly, the second season is not as good as the first, plot-wise, but still is as quirky and entertaining with an unbelievable ending to the series. Many have criticized the show for being excessively intellectual, but I never found the show pedantic or hopelessly cryptic. Rather, it seemed as though David Lynch just decided to employ every weird idea that popped into his febrile mind for the sheer joy of it.
To finish, one needs to watch this show. It's not uniformly brilliant and sometimes just plain weird, but always rewarding and truly one of the landmarks of American television. Go get a nice piece of cherry pie, a cup of coffee, take four days off work and start watching it.
Created by David Lynch and Mark Frost, the series takes its name from a small American town where a grisly murder has been committed. The victim is local beauty Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee), a girl who seemed to have a perfectly normal life, only it turns out that's not the case: she had a lot of secrets, and in one of them lies the key to finding her killer. That assignment is given to Special FBI Agent Dale Cooper (Lynch regular Kyle MacLachlan), who quickly earns the trust and friendship of Sheriff Truman (Michael Ontkean) and the rest of Twin Peaks'inhabitants thanks to his extraordinary deductive methods and fascination for the calm and peace around him. And he is going to need all the help he can get, as Laura's murder is just one of the many odd things causing trouble in the heavenly surroundings: there's Benjamin Horne (Richard Beymer) and his dangerous connection with a casino/brothel known as One-Eyed Jack's; there's his daughter Audrey (Sherilyn Fenn), whose interest in Agent Cooper might put her in a worse situation than she thinks; there's the dispute over the Packard sawmill between Catherine Martell (Piper Laurie) and Josie Packard (Joan Chen); and there are the bizarre creatures who populate Cooper's dreams, people like The Man From Another Place (a backwards-talking dwarf, played by Michael J. Anderson) or the terrifying Bob (Frank Silva), suggesting that most of the events in Twin Peaks may not have a rational explanation.
Back in 1990, a series like this had never been done before, so its success was a little unexpected (sadly, ratings dropped during the second season, leading to the show's premature cancellation). Now it can be seen as an anticipation of that great TV creation that is HBO: the dead interacting with the living (Six Feet Under), ambiguous characters and even more ambiguous relationships between them (Deadwood), a consistent balance between moving and funny, beautiful and shocking (The Sopranos), the seeds of all those elements can be found in Twin Peaks, a show that didn't hesitate when it came to playing with the format or crossing the line in terms of mature content (death, drug abuse, rape) or on-screen violence (the ending of Episode 8, where one of the villains is shown at the peak of his abilities, is still one of the most audacious scenes ever shown on mainstream television). More than any other series, it represents the seamless merger of big and small screen, a fact that is underlined by Lynch's decision to further explore the story in a feature film after the last episode had aired. Fans of the visionary filmmaker will find plenty of his recurring themes, some a direct reference to his previous works (the ugliness lying underneath the apparent perfection, as seen in Blue Velvet), others a hint of things to come (the duality of Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive, here embodied by Lee, who plays both the deceased Laura and her cousin).
As always with the Eraserhead director, the acting is exceptional: MacLachlan and Lee are the standouts, the former playing his best role to date, a cunning combination of palpable vulnerability and impeccable wit, the latter shining with a double performance that should have been the beginning of a great career (alas, apart from a minor role in John Carpenter's Vampires, she hasn't done much since). The supporting cast (Ontkean, Laurie, Lara Flynn Boyle and Ray Wise in particular) adds depth and emotion, making some episodes the most affecting ever seen on a TV screen. As for the guest stars, not all of them are well known, but every single one brings something special to the series: the most notable cameos include a then unknown Heather Graham, a pre-X-Files David Duchovny (a quite funny and ironic contrast to Fox Mulder) and Lynch himself as a half-deaf FBI Regional Chief (one of the show's best characters).
Those interested in American TV simply have to give Twin Peaks a look: it might be too weird or unsettling for some (but then again, that's always the case with Lynch's work), but it remains a landmark in contemporary television, and played a vital role in making the US small screen what it is today.
The first season of Twin Peaks is generally regarded as splendid, a magical, disturbing and moving recreation of a small community of us flawed and beautiful humans. The second season starts well but then chugs and splutters, the tires go flat in the middle episodes only to be pumped up and set back on the road going full-tilt only to crash into the wall of oblivion, not to be renewed for a third season.
It is amazing to me how obviously Lynch and his team dropped the ball after Laura Palmer's murderer was revealed. Once that was done the writers launch into the most sophomoric and tedious bilge about Ben Horne going cuckoo and reliving the Civil War in his office at The Great Northern Hotel, high school pep-rally stuff, and it killed the show dead. This sorry sub-plot was coupled with another one about the most uninteresting character in the series, pouty James Hurley and his Harley. I was tired of his James Dean imitation after episode one, but to be pummeled by two episodes about him and some rich bitch trying to frame him for murder is too much. The poor guy is too stupid for words, as Laura Palmer noted early on in her diary. These 4 middle episodes are pointless and hideously boring and were, I have no doubt, responsible for the loss of a substantial number of the loyal audience at the time. To add insult to injury we are also subjected to a new guest star in the form of the worst actor known to man, Billy Zane. This over-exposed, fatuous vanity-victim is brought in to relieve Audrey Horne of her virginity, then flies off in his private jet, piloted by his perfect self, to fight the ecology war in Brazil or something (burning tons of jet fuel in the process no doubt.) I was bored stiff by these three interminable, adolescent and totally non-Lynch-like sub-plots.
Things revive markedly as the writers got their heads together and made the wicked genius Windom Earl the centerpiece of the end of the season. We get to The Dark Lodge in the end. But this was truly The End as the show was canceled. I wanted to see The White Lodge where love triumphs over evil, as it is we are left with evil rampaging through Twin Peaks for eternity. I find that sad.
We'll never know how Agent Cooper deals with Bob residing in his head, or if Norma and Big Ed get married or if Ben was conked dead or just cuckoo (again) by Dr Hayward, or whether Audrey and Pete Martell were blown to jell-o in the bank vault or whether Leo's teeth hold out keeping the tarantulas at bay until Sheriff Truman and Andy come to his rescue and take him to the Home.
Why did David Lynch allow his 3/4 brilliant creation to dribble away like it did? Where was his commitment? I love his work but I will not forget how he left me in the lurch with the unfinished Twin Peaks, the short-lived prodigy of television, gone down in undeserved television ignominy.
What might have been if the commitment had been as strong as the initial vision. You're better'n that Dave. Dammit.
However, as I got more into the series, I found myself obsessively hooked. The series, in it's own ominous way, was extremely funny and there were so many great one liners ("that's a damn good cup of coffee") and the characters kept you second guessing. Though some characters were obviously villains, others had intentions that were often indistinguishable.
As I relentlessly watched the show over a three week period, I found myself laughing out loud and being disturbed at the same time. Ben Horne's meltdown is one of the funniest things I have ever seen in any TV series, I chuckle just thinking about it. Only David Lynch could think of something that was so eccentric and funny at the same time.
So in the end, I must say I found this show endlessly amusing. Almost every person on the show has their own idiosyncrasy, appearances by future stars like Heather Graham and David Duchovny injected humor and depth into the show, and heck, there was a sheriff named Harry S Truman, what else do you need?
I am glad to see the first season is on DVD, I can't wait until the rest is released. I wish this show had been on much longer but it is such a bizarre show that I can understand why mainstream America did not understand it. I wouldn't recommend this show to anyone that likes TV shows which are light-hearted or straightforward. Be warned, the final episode is completely bizarre, and not necessarily funny.
As a whole, the show has a very alien feel to it and may chase many people away, but if you understand David Lynch's warped sense of humor and can see the sheer lunacy of the show, you will find it endlessly entertaining.
This is a show that you know, as you are watching it, that it is special and destined to become a classic. What a wonderful memory. One of my favorite moments in the first episode is Andy crying, and later telling the girl not to tell the sheriff. It really brought humanity to Laura's death.
Can't wait to one day own the whole series on DVD, and one summer night, start watching the episodes one by one.
Another amazing aspect of the opening episode is the many types of characters and settings involved, just within the town of Twin Peaks. The school, the lodge, the sheriff office, the lake, the railroad tracks. It was almost as if several shows and genres were evident in one episode. Something for everyone. But it still tied together so amazingly.
And the highly praised end of the series, the final episode, is actually not as good as many say. It is so obvious that they ran out of ideas that the only option possible was to give a shocking and dark end just to make you think and leave the viewer with a sour feeling. However, it is not good enough, and it is not up to the high standards of the first part of the series. I also must say that I was quite disappointed at the sci-fi and paranormal stuff. The character of Bob, that evil spirit that takes over their hosts and commits murders is quite ridiculous. I find pitiful the constant use of a mirror in which we see the "diabolic face" of Bob laughing like a madman. That is not scary. That is just grotesque. Even Low budget horror movies have far more acceptable approaches and far more interesting characters. To know that Laura Palmer was actually killed by an evil spirit who is always behaving like a jester, buffoon or joker and laughing in mirrors (maybe scary for children, because it makes me laugh) is really very bad. We deserved another killer. We deserved a really scary killer, and not just a grotesque and playful demon who lacks ability to scare and convey fear. Bob is ridiculous. Bob lacks a convincing evil background, a personality, and a history. Bob is a very weak stunt, and a very poor attempt at trying to convey "something too scary to be fully explained". Bad. This being said, I would daresay that the series are too overrated. It is good television, it is a good show, and some parts of the first season have an outstanding quality. Indeed very good television and art in its purest form. However, they did not manage to develop properly the wonderful ideas they had, and the show lost quality at full speed.
But aside from the many, many, many layers to the show, to the dynamics between FBI Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLaughlin in his most recognizable role) and those he relates to everyday as well as in his dreams and Tibetan-inspired visions (the classic being the quintessential dream with the garbled-talking little-person), the teenagers with their own plots of neuroses and dramas and higher ambitions and darker demons, as well as those you'd least expect- the quiet ones- not to mention the ones residing on top in the little crevices we dare not usually seek out in small towns (i.e. the prostitution ring fronted by Mr. Horne), it's just a damn-well entertaining program. It's a superlative crossbreeding of the kind of inimitable melodrama that has the immediate feel of a soap-opera, but far more intelligent in the scope of acting and writing, and the classic absurdities that come up in the best of Lynch's work. Meaning that it will work, more or less, for two different audiences.
Fans of Lynch's will drink it up like damn-good coffee the endless quirks that become commonplace, where characters in any other show would get little no-note roles like the secretary Lucy, or the psychologist Jacobi, or even a classic nut-bar like the Log-Lady, who has the claim that the log is really her dead husband. This, plus enough dream sequences, elaborate lighting and set-design schemes, and the outrageous characterizations make it vintage Lynch/Frost work. For the other crowd, those who don't usually watch Lynch's movies and are more of just the regular TV potatoes, the series has an appeal for its more genuine side, the one that stays true to the ideas and dramatic tensions behind the characters. Even when it gets too weird, and especially in season 2 the feeling starts to get stronger and more nagging, one can't really totally pull away from it, like as if some old man with an old storybook was reading out something almost certifiable, but intriguing all the same. Laura Palmer's death brings out what her life was all about, and really what anyone connected to her is all about; there's an appeal to find out what's behind the lives of others, especially when it balances out between light and dark tendencies.
On top of this, the acting is par for the course top-notch. MacLaughlin, it seems could play this guy in his sleep after a while, and it doesn't take too long in the first season to get past his own odd-sense of awareness (and his regular reliance on dreams and visions) to get closer to solving the dreaded case of Laura Palmer. It's hard for me to think of any one performance that would be a bad one to knock-off, as even the more ludicrous ones- based on their characters- are played as believable as possible. Memorable guest appearances, however, are attributed to the likes of Michael Parks (known from the Tarantino/Rodriguez movies), David Duchovny (an excellent, far cry from Mulder) Frank Silva (as the one who, well, I won't say too much about him), and Lynch himself as the FBI regional chief who's a little hard of hearing. So much can be seen as the blackest of comedy, by turns very sudden and otherworldly and just plain strange (a signing and dancing Mr. Palmer and rows and rows of donuts just bits of what's in store), and it is often very funny. But there's also much in the way of what makes for the best TV: you want to keep watching each week, or now as is the case back to back on DVD, to see how this will turn out, however f***ed up it might get. Simply, it has something, if only in parts, for everybody/
So get yourself some pie and coffee, make sure to speak backwards and forwards again, and don't underestimate the power of a giant with some clues on hand. Twin Peaks is a world of secrets unveiled, and secrets that maybe shouldn't be unveiled yet sought after, and there's enough to keep fans talking for years to come as one of the great 'cult' show in modern TV.
The story begins as special FBI agent Dale Cooper (perfectly impersonated by Kyle MacLachlan) comes to the little town of Twin Peaks to investigate the murder of the local beauty queen, Laura Palmer.
As the series proceed, Laura's killer is eventually found and the main plot line turns and twists to eventually end in a place where you would never expect it to be...
Twin Peaks begins as a crime story with quite a lot of comical moments, the picturesque characters of this little town where everybody knows each other are very nicely sketched out and developed in a very interesting way, most of them having quite a lot of secrets, thus providing secondary story lines that come and go, more or less intertwined with the main one.
As the story proceeds, the comical tone slowly fades away, slight touches of sci-fi and paranormal events come in and as you grow more and more fond of all those lovely people of Twin Peaks, a much darker and intriguing plot comes to the surface, dipping the whole series into an ever more and more mysterious and sometimes even scary atmosphere...
And there suddenly comes the final episode. Of course, everyone expects the final episode to be something special, but no one could expect THIS! I will not get into the details of the story so as not to include any spoilers, but the final episode is a must see! It is a must see! Never ever in my life have I witnessed such an ending!!! surprising, unhappy, happy, good, bad... the ending of Twin Peaks is far beyond that. The only word I can find to describe it is ABSOLUTELY AND UTTERLY NEGATIVE, not leaving the faintest little spark of hope... I was still schocked by the end even a couple of hours after having seen it and still feel somewhat uneasy just recalling it... I admire the person (D. Lynch and M. Frost) who got the idea and - most importantly - had the guts to write a finale like that...
See if you have the guts...
See how far you can go...
See if you can cope with Twin Peaks...
A must see!
Personally, I think they should've stopped the series right after they solved Laura Palmer's murder, but oh well. I hope they someday make another movie to tie up some of the loose ends such as the way the series ended on a cliffhanger.
Anyways, onto my lunch of a baguette with butter and brie and some cherry pie.
Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee) is one of the most beloved residents of the small town of Twin Peaks, so it comes as a huge shocker when she is found dead. Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle McLaughlan) is called in to town to help with the case, and the possible murderers are many. Also in the town of Twin Peaks, or in the outskirt forests, are many secrets, and supernatural happenings.
Season one of Twin Peaks is great. It introduces the characters well, and is the perfect mixture of comedy and drama. This season only touched upon the supernaturals that the series would soon adapt, which may have been a complaint among fans, but season two went overboard. Season two is good, but was just too much. Laura Palmer's killer was revealed mid season, and really that was the end of the show's plot. It tried to be a smooth transition, but it wasn't. Before this point, Laura Palmer was the show's star, and when she was laid to rest along with her murderer (In one of the show's most brilliant episodes), the show lost something. It went off to become too bizarre it was bordering on silly. But still, even with this season, this was an excellent show.
As for originality, this show is one of the most original shows ever thought up. It's basically a supernatural soap opera murder mystery that attracts both males and females, and has a huge cast, with each episode playing as an anthology of character observations. Season one was near perfect, season two was near great, and overall this was an excellent series.
My rating: *** 1/2 out of ****. 48 mins per episode. TV14
Don't get me wrong there are brilliant moments between Heather Graham and Kyle MacLachlan, and I loved the chess and four queen analogy.
Unfortunately, the owl cave was just awful. The shapes didn't even align - the tattoos were triangles and on Cooper's drawings (and in the cave) the shapes were diamonds. Then the police investigate the scene and leave / the villain investigates the scene - finds what the police overlook / and then the police come back... all on the same night... What the? It was so poorly done - it would've been better left out.
And, so MUCH more could have been done with the final two episodes. The Miss Twin Peaks competition was a train wreck - completely awkward. Particularly when compared to the 4 episodes which beautifully and smoothly setup the the pageant (I particularly enjoyed the interaction with the villain and Leo, and the villain and the 3 queens.) Finally, the last episode was completed with the obvious intent of creating a 3rd season, and ironically - ABC never opted to pick it up. So... you just sit there thinking (20 years later, watching season 2 at one sitting on Netflix instead of week by week on ABC) why did I invest all this time in a series that ended like this!? It was as if I was watching the Matrix 2 and 3 all over again. Ugh.
Fans of TP often say that the show was canceled because too many viewers weren't smart enough, open enough for the show's supposed "weirdness", its alleged wild ingenuity, or whatever. As a fan of weirdness myself, I have to correct that misconception. There is nothing too off-the-wall about TP; it is a merely watchable, rather silly whodunit that goes around in circles, spinning webs in every corner but (or because of it) ultimately going nowhere. The supposed weirdness is always forced; the characters don't behave in a strange way as much as they behave in an IDIOTIC way half the time. There's a difference...
Whenever I watch the "weird dream" sequence in "Living In Oblivion" in which the dwarf criticizes the director (Buscemi) for succumbing to the tired old let's-use-a-midget-in-a-dream-scene cliché, I think of Lynch. You want weird? "Eraserhead" is weird - in fact, it's beyond weird, it's basically abstract. You want a unique TV show? Watch "The Prisoner". You want a strange-looking cast? Felini's and Leone's films offer that. TP looks like an overly coiffed TV crime drama in which all the young people look like fashion models. The cast gives TP a plastic look. Kens & Barbies en masse.
In fact, one of the producers of TP said that Lynch was looking for "unique faces" for the series. Unique faces? Like Lara Flynn Boyle's? Sheryll Fenn's? Like those effeminate-faced "hunks" straight out of men's catalogs (or gay magazines)? Don't get me wrong; there is nothing wrong with getting an attractive cast, especially with beauties like Fenn (the way Madonna would look if she were 1000 times prettier), but then don't go around saying you're making a "weird show with weird-looking people". And I have never understood Lynch's misguided fascination with Kyle MacLachlan (I should get a medal for bothering to spell his name right). He is not unlikable, but lacks charisma, seeming a little too bland and polished. His character's laughable "eccentricities" were not at all interesting, merely one of Lynch's many attempts to force the weirdness, trying hard to live up to his reputation - him having completely lost his edge by that time. Everything Lynch made post-"Elephant Man" was very much sub-par compared to his first two movies. What followed were often mediocre efforts that relied on Lynch's relatively small but fanatical fan base to keep him in the public eye by interpreting meanings into his badly put-together stories that don't hold any water on closer scrutiny. In other words, Lynch is every intellectual-wannabe's darling.
So Laura Palmer was killed by her Dad...? He was obsessed by the devil or some such nonsense. That's the best this "great mind" could come up with... You've got B-movie horror films that end with more originality.
Lynch is neither bright nor hard-working enough to come up with a terrific story. What he does have though is his "artist aura", which has turned him into somewhat of a cinema god for people who are easily duped.
In the first season and the first half of the second season, we make a mystified journey in the town of Twin Peaks through a chain of strange events and their consequences. Being introduced with exceptional characters, we experience the towns atmosphere, inhabitants' life and their twisted relationships. They're brought us almost in a cinematic way. Not every puzzle is solved in a certain way, some instances remain open to our perception. But everything is smooth.
Honestly I was a little disappointed after seeing the ninth and tenth episode of the second season. The sense of mystery partially gives place to artificiality and dullness. As some said earlier, it's like (although certainly not) the concept reached it's limits and there comes improvisation for the sake of entertainment. So expect to be disturbed by pointless conversations, unnecessarily prolonged scenes (especially when romance is involved), exaggeration, and lack of connectivity. Feeling of compulsion may last till the last few episodes of season two. And after that awaits the worse. As mentioned before, last episode leaves everything hanging. It ends prematurely and leaves a full sense of incompleteness, much like "Carnivale". But even considering these, probably you'll still find Twin Peaks enjoyable.
Twin Peaks is a cult TV series that affected both TV and cinema productions. Personally I like to watch one or two episodes time to time just to feel the atmosphere of early '90s. I should add that the music in Twin Peaks is enchanting. Angelo Badalamenti really did a great job creating the unique score. But it's more than that. You'll find mystery, symbolism, references and creativity in Twin Peaks. In many ways Twin Peaks is an exceptional production and way ahead of it's time.
The story follows the investigations the agent Dale Cooper to solve the mysterious murder of a beautiful and beloved girl, Laura Palmer, who is seemed as a role-model by almost everyone in the town of Twin peaks. However, things aren't what it seem in "Twin Peaks" and no one is who pretends to be. Many dark secrets of almost all the characters are revealed in every episode, but always in a fascinating, intriguing way. This show caught me since the first episode, until the surprising, disturbing and impressive last episode. This is one of the most artistic TV-shows ever made. All the characters are unique and the performances are great. The music made by Angelo Badalamenti, is great as the show, giving a unique feeling. Many shows tried (like "Lost") tried to be like this one. But for me at least, it never won't be any shows like this. This is a must-see for everyone.
We corresponded via email too briefly in 1996. He advised me in regard to life and 2012 to "be there or be square."
When I posted this in the Twin Peaks Message Boards area two fellow posters quickly agreed with me.
BTW, I watched Twin Peaks when it was originally aired in the UK around 15 years ago.
I have a copy of the December 1990 Playboy starring Sherilyn Fenn which I purchased underage although quite permissible for her only semi-nudity.
--- by Jerome, computer coder, author, and voter of 1,000 films.
This truly unique blend of mystery, comedy and horror with surreal undertones and deeper layers of symbolism manages to be hilarious, touching and disturbing all together. The music, characters, dialogues and story lines, the visually arresting sequences, the unmistakable directorial approach - everything about the series is so "out of this world". Peculiar and timeless, the mysteries of "Twin Peaks" are irresistible and open to interpretation.
I was especially taken with Special Agent Dale Cooper (Maclachlan) who is anything but your typical Hooveristic FBI agent. Michael Ontkean is his perfect foil as Shreiff Harry S. Truman. I could go on and on, but I think it were time better sent if you were watching the series, 29 wonderful hours all told. A super cast, a story that twists and turns more than a hair pin road, and the haunting theme music make this a TV and film classic. Warning: not for small children, say under twenty. Or over sixty. (OK sixty five tops).
There are two characters here, the creative mind of Lynch and the market forces of TeeVee. Lynch has built a project around two such notions before: in `Blue Velvet' the two main characters were the small town movie and the twists of his mind. In Blue, the formula worked marvelously because the hierarchy worked: the base was the movie form and it was inherently enriching. Same with `Mulholland.'
The risk here is much greater because the base is TeeVee, and that form is the opposite. It drains. In Blue, Lynch's mind could weave values with the `small town' movie. Here, it is relied upon to provide all the life. Instead of the partner enlivening, it drains. Compare this to `Fire Walk' to see what I mean.
Here, the notion is to go as far as possible with nothing happening. All must be in stasis. The joke is that while much is revealed nothing is ever explained, and if nothing else, TeeVee audiences are addicted to clarity and simplicity. So as with Seinfeld, the TeeVee audience went along with the joke; `oh, I get it... there's nothing there.. there's not _supposed_ to be something there.'
This must have been frustrating for Lynch. He surrounded himself with people he knew and trusted. Many had worked on his films. All agreed. No one deliberately fell away from the plan. But everyone did, because the medium is so powerful it bends the best intentions. It is impossible to work this kind of intelligence with TeeVee. This is a very strong lesson for those who study film and how it affects the society's methods of reasoning.
Ted's Evaluation -- 2 of 4: Has some interesting elements.