Twin Peaks part 14 review

(Each week, we’re going to kick off a discussion about Twin Peaks: The Return by answering one question: what was the best scene of the episode?)

After despising the past couple of episodes of Twin Peaks, the elusive series connected with me in a big way with last night’s installment, trading narrative tangents and autuer-driven indulgences for a mythology-centric hour that made me breath a sigh of relief. Twin Peaks contains multitudes and part of its legend stems from the way it can represent many things to many people, but I’m partial to episodes like the one that aired last night, and I found it to be particularly satisfying – especially in the wake of what came before it.

Read our Twin Peaks part 14 review below.

Freddie TP

The Best Scene in Part 14

For me, the best scene in this episode came toward its end: the part featuring the Great Northern Hotel security guards. It’s James Hurley’s birthday, so he asks his young new co-worker Freddie to tell him the story of why Freddie always wears a rubber glove on his right hand. Turns out he was sucked into a void and met the Giant, who instructed him to buy a very specific glove at a nearby store and that when he wore it, he would gain superhuman strength in that hand. (This isn’t just nonsense, either: the glove works, as evidenced by Freddie destroying two walnuts between his fingers.) The Giant also told him to travel to the town of Twin Peaks to find his destiny, so I can’t wait to see how he factors in to the remaining four hours of this season. Actor Jake Wardle, who plays Freddie, did a terrific job delivering what must have been a multi-page monologue, and in an episode full of great scenes and supernatural happenings, I was the most mesmerized by a simple scene of these two guys just sitting outside having a conversation.

But let’s tackle this episode chronologically for the rest of this review. FBI chief Gordon Cole returns a call to the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Department, in which Frank Truman tells him they have reason to believe there are two Coopers out there. Cole’s appreciative, and we quickly determine that this isn’t the first time he’s dealt with something like this. Albert’s detailing of the first “Blue Rose” case to Tammy was illuminating: we learn that Cooper and DoppelCooper aren’t the first to experience this strange doubling in the real world. Years before, FBI agents Cole and Philip Jeffries witnessed a double of a woman kill her counterpart, and the victim disappeared before their eyes. Sounds like some foreshadowing for a conflict between the two Coopers to me.

That scene is illuminating in an entirely different way as well: we find out that Cooper’s former secretary Diane is related to Janey-E. The two are half-sisters, but they’re estranged; I’m still thinking about what this connection could mean in terms of the larger story, but the idea that Diane is connected at all to the Dougie Jones storyline is a tidy way to tie those narrative threads together as the season heads toward its conclusion.

(Side note: I laughed so hard when the Las Vegas office chief suddenly screamed at his underling for seemingly no reason, slamming his fist on his desk. That reaction was totally out of left field, and one of those moments that could only work in the world of Twin Peaks.)

But the best aspect of the scene was the way he relayed his latest “Monica Bellucci dream” to Albert and Tammy in their makeshift office. The sound design has been terrific across The Return (I’m still trying to figure out what Lynch and Frost were trying to say with the squeaking window cleaner before Diane arrived), but it was especially effective this week, with the unnatural humming of electricity and ominous tonalities in key moments adding immeasurably to the scenes in which they appeared. Cole’s dream – which, with its Parisian cafe setting, and self-awareness of dream logic is reminiscent of Inception – was not only beautifully filmed, edited, and executed, but it was one of the few recent scenes involving that character that wasn’t oppressively tedious.

“We are like the dreamer who dreams, and then lives inside the dream,” goes the ancient saying, and there are so many ways to read this that it’s enough to make your head spin. My choice is to look at it as a meta commentary on Lynch and Frost’s story they’re weaving for us. It’s no mistake that Cole, the character played by Lynch himself, uttered these words. To me, it means that not only are we the audience visiting Lynch and Frost’s dream for an hour every week, but they too are living inside their own creation (and for Lynch as Cole, that connection is literal).

Cole’s dream continued with a memory of a moment we saw back in Fire Walk With Me, in which Agent Phillip Jeffries (David Bowie) points at Cooper and asks Cole, “Who do you think that is, there?” (In the film, Jeffries also specifically mentions the idea of living inside a dream, deepening the link even further.) Did Jeffries know then that Cooper wasn’t who he claimed to be? Was this moment destined to become fodder for Cole’s dream years later, so the dots could finally be connected at the proper time? Cole, shaken from his recollections, gets meta once again. “Damn! I hadn’t remembered that!” he says. “Now this is really something interesting to think about.” That statement may as well be coming from those in the audience who didn’t have Fire Walk With Me memorized, and are wondering about the various dream-within-dream connections that have been presented.

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