Twin Peaks: Part Five Review


By: Eric Flapjack Ashley (@flapjackashley)

We are on to the fifth episode of the Twin Peaks revival, and it finally seems like the show is hitting its stride. Whereas the first three episodes had some elements that felt right, it seemed off to me for the most part, with lots of new storylines being started in random places, and not enough focus on what I really came to see. It’s not like I wanted this new series to be exactly like the old one, but there is something to be said when it is just so different that it doesn’t feel like there is a connection at all. The first half hour of episode three was especially tough to sit through.

Episode four rolled around and began to feel good again, with the introduction of old favorite Bobby Briggs (Dana Ashbrook), the witty banter between Albert and Cole, and the first use of original theme music over a scene at the sheriff’s station involving Laura Palmer’s photo. Again, I don’t want the show to be the same, but for the longest time, it didn’t even feel like I was watching the same show as before.

Sunday’s episode five felt like a real Twin Peaks episode. It had nods to the original series, continued to introduce new characters and possible plots without distracting from the current ones, and brought back a lot of the quirkiness and humor that I loved without being so far over the top.

The Random Lodge

In episode five, there were lots of little scenes that played like a “where are they now” catch up to older characters from the original series. First, we have Mike (Gary Hershberger), better known as Bobby’s best friend, dismissing a pathetic job application from a loser (Josh Fadem); and Doctor Jacoby (Russ Tamblyn), still wearing the trademark red and green 3D glasses, doing a public access conspiracy theory-type show while hawking shovels he’s trying to sell, and Nadine (Wendy Robie) watching intently and grinning. Mix these in with the random scenes from episode two – that haven’t been followed-up on to date – with Sarah Palmer and James, it all seems pretty random, existing only as fan service so we can smile and go “Oh, there they are!” All of these sequences don’t really serve any purpose as of now, but I bet they will tie together in some way down the line.

Speaking of scenes that don’t seem to matter, Sheriff Frank Truman’s wife is played by genre favorite Candy Clark, which I thought should be of note, since I love her. Ernie Hudson also made an appearance later in the episode, and it’s always good to see that fine actor in anything.

Wow Bob Wow

On to scenes that do matter to the plot, a hilarious drops the jokes as she reveals the findings of her autopsy on the headless body from the first episode. It’s a very funny scene that had me laughing out loud – a real head turner of a scene with lots of trademark David Lynch ill-timed humor.

We also join Doppleganger Cooper in jail. We see flashbacks to the series finale with BOB and Agent Cooper in the Black Lodge and the mirror scene that we all have had burned into our memories for 26 years. In a legitimately scary scene, Cooper stares at himself in the mirror in his cell and says that he is glad that “you’re still with me”.

Good Cooper is still parading around as Dougie…this whole story is bizarre, and even I can’t quite understand what is going on. But that is par for the course with Twin Peaks! Seeing Cooper shed a tear actually made me a bit emotional, as if I was seeing the real Agent Cooper crying as he had been trapped for 25 years. Naomi Watts is doing a fantastic job here as well. Later in the episode, in Rancho Rosa (Double R) Estates, suspicious-looking characters circle the block before a young kid (having gone unseen by his drugged-out mother) is the first to realize that Dougie’s car is bugged with a bomb.

Cooper as Dougie is not making any friends at work as he calls out a co-worker as a liar during a meeting – signaled by the same red light that he saw at the casino as he was winning his buckets of cash. And back at said casino, the owner is accused of being a part of Cooper’s freak winnings and is beaten up and tossed out – with thug Bradley Mitchum (Jim Belushi) putting a hit on Cooper if he ever shows up there again. It should be noted that I thought Belushi did a good, convincing job at being a threatening character here. Cooper is given a bunch of files to go over, but ends up being mesmerized by a statue outside of his work.

Back at the Double R Diner – making its first appearance in the show – Shelly Johnson (Madchen Amick) shares some concern with Norma Jennings (Peggy Lipton) for Rebecca (Amanda Seyfried) as she goes out to do some afternoon coke with her low-life boyfriend, Steven Burnett (Caleb Landry Jones).

Speaking of suspicious lowlifes, back at the Roadhouse, the apple doesn’t fall far as we see Richard Horne (Eamon Farren). He passes off a wad of cash to someone on the down low, aggressively throat-grabs some thirsty woman and threatens to laugh while he bangs her – all while smoking right in front of a no-smoking sign. What a rebel.

The Cow Jumped Over the Moon

In perhaps one of the more frightening sequences, Doggelganger Cooper is granted his phone call in jail. But who to call? Certainly not Mr. Strawberry because, much to the horror of lead agent on the case, Mr. Strawberry isn’t taking calls. DC then punches a bunch of random numbers into the phone, sets off the prison alarms, and says to someone “The cow jumped over the moon.” And then he hangs up, and continues to stare into the security camera.

Make no mistake: Kyle MacLachlan plays evil so very well.

Good Cooper is still outside, admiring the gun-toting statue and the credits roll.

Looking Ahead

There is a lot to unpack in this week’s episode. It toned down the weirdness of previous episodes so it may seem like there wasn’t a lot going on, but there was a bunch. First was the clearest indication of BOB still being present within Doppleganger Cooper. Then we had the obvious parallels between Rebecca and Steven that mirrors Laura Palmer and Bobby Briggs back in the day. We seem to see that most of the males in Twin Peaks are creepy, evil, aggressive, and potential psychopaths. We saw the horrifying power of BOB for the first time on a mass scale. We also saw Cooper and his affection for good coffee surface, and the famous jazz-type music that we all know and love.

Next week’s episode has so many directions it could go. We still haven’t had another scene with the high school principal (Matthew Lillard) or anything about most of the people from the first hour. Will Shelly get wise and act on her suspicions about Rebecca before she turns into another Laura Palmer? Will Albert arrive in Twin Peaks to find whomever it was he spoke about at the end of episode four? I mean, he knows where she drinks, after all.

Hard to believe we are already five episodes down in this 18-hour revival. And for some reason, I think we are just getting started.

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