A guide to Twin Peaks
June 2, 2006 6:19 AM   Subscribe

A guide to Twin Peaks: characters and episodes. Spoiler warning--the niftily-designed chart linked at the beginning of this post reveals the identity of Laura Palmer's killer right off the bat. To skip the chart and go straight to the reviews and analyses of episodes, click here.
posted by Prospero (43 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
I *love* Twin Peaks. The recent crop of in-depth serials (Lost, Big Love, even The Sopranos) would be nowhere without TP. TP was the first show to apply cinematic quality to a serial TV drama. It was also one of the first TV dramas that gave its audience some credit for intelligence.
posted by Afroblanco at 6:22 AM on June 2, 2006


Mmm, Twin Peaks. <3

That said, the chart is sort of nifty in an Ooh Flash, but I found it pretty annoying to use. Gimme a directed graph!
posted by cortex at 6:33 AM on June 2, 2006


Man, that show was ahead of its time.
posted by graventy at 6:38 AM on June 2, 2006


Damn.... I had been meaning to do a website layout using a similar technique for a while now. I've even got all the details and some test code in my moleskine that's more than a year old. Well done, and what a perfect topic for this. although mine would have a few "features" that this one lacks.
posted by furtive at 6:38 AM on June 2, 2006


Release series 2 on DVD now!
posted by slimepuppy at 6:58 AM on June 2, 2006


I'm not understanding that graph. I watched the original show & just wanted to confirm a few things, but I'll be darned if I can figure out how to even see the whole thing.

Aside: one of the funniest experiences I ever had in a theatre had to be seeing "Fire Walk With Me" at a local cineplex in Whitby, Ont. when it was first released. For whatever reason, people were just filled with venom, screaming at the screen, "what the fuck is this shit!?" and "I want my money back" etc., etc. I had tears rolling down my face, I was laughing so hard. It makes me smile just to think about it now in fact.
posted by stinkycheese at 7:07 AM on June 2, 2006 [1 favorite]


I heart Twin Peaks. There was something about the makeup all the women used....that really flat lipstick. I'll carry a torch for Sherilyn Fenn forever.

Anyway, the show itself :) Truly excellent even when it got a bit out of hand in the second series. You could tell that it wasn't going to last as a twisted Soap Opera (which I believe was what Frost and Lynch wanted) but it was great going along for the ride. And Don S Davis as Major Briggs was a total eye-opener.

Funnily enough, the shows that have some TP in their DNA (Lost and the like) have never grabbed me in the same way.
posted by bouncebounce at 7:07 AM on June 2, 2006


"You listen to me. While I will admit to a certain cynicism, the fact is that I am a nay-sayer and hatchet man in the fight against violence. I pride myself in taking a punch and I'll gladly take another, because I choose to live my life in the company of Gandhi and King. My concerns are global. I reject absolutely revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love."
posted by brevator at 7:27 AM on June 2, 2006


Wow, another gorgeous-but-unusable interface.
I clicked on the tiny, italicized link, and by the time the screen scrolled to the destination, I forgot where I came from?
Maybe the interface is supposed to be as confusing as the show?
posted by Lord Kinbote at 7:52 AM on June 2, 2006


Biosphere's use of Twin Peaks samples on Substrata is pure magic.
posted by davebush at 7:54 AM on June 2, 2006


Brevator, Miquel Ferrer's Albert was my favorite too.
posted by prodigalsun at 8:14 AM on June 2, 2006


Dale Cooper: What does Bob want?
Mike, The One-Armed Man: He is Bob, eager for fun. He wears a smile. Everybody run.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 8:38 AM on June 2, 2006


One of my friends wrote an essay on the religious implications of TP. I think her theory was that Major Briggs = father, Agent Cooper = son, Albert = holy ghost.
posted by Afroblanco at 8:40 AM on June 2, 2006


Do we really need a spoiler warning for a TV show that's been off the air for over a decade?
posted by geekhorde at 8:46 AM on June 2, 2006


Do we really need a spoiler warning for a TV show that's been off the air for over a decade?

No, but it certainly does no harm. Do you object to the very idea that someone mightn't have seen Twin Peaks yet?
posted by cortex at 8:49 AM on June 2, 2006


Well that just brought back all the frustration of watching it the first time. There's a fish in the percolator! Josie was trapped in a fucking drawer knob! Creamed corn!

I must be a glutten for punishment since I went on to watch X-Files and Lost.
posted by Biblio at 8:57 AM on June 2, 2006


Windom Earle: Your name, please?
Major Briggs: Garland Briggs.
Windom Earle: Garland, what do you fear most... in the world?
Major Briggs: The possibility that love is not enough.
posted by Matt Oneiros at 9:20 AM on June 2, 2006 [1 favorite]


Unquestionably the best telly series ever.

For some reason, both my parents were always out on whatever night it was on, so my little sister and I developed a tradition of dropping acid before watching. Terrifying fun, though I now find that I have to look away whenever Sarah Palmer is on screen.

As for this site, fiddly character map thing aside, the episode reviews are great - I have a horrible feeling I'm about to read the lot of them.

Release series 2 on DVD now!

Amen!
posted by Pock Suppet at 9:40 AM on June 2, 2006


pity the beautifully designed but frustrating interface. At least PostcardViewer lets you navigate from picture to picture. Or what about using a good ol' family tree chart! I'll volunteer to document that :)

That said, thanks for the post - I was talking about TP with a friend a while back and we both agreed nothing that weird and wonderful would ever fly on TV today. Wonderful stuff.
posted by rmm at 9:41 AM on June 2, 2006


As my summer project is to watch all the episodes in order, I thank you. And as for the killer, well, the point of the journey is not to arrive. Was TP ever really about the murder except on the most surface of levels?

But gosh, could the text on that flash file be any smaller? I could barely read it with Windows Magnifier.
posted by Eideteker at 9:50 AM on June 2, 2006


I have seasons 1, 2 and the movie and i've been thinking about watching them again lately. This may push me over the edge :)

Only Season 1 was really about the murder. They kind of baited people into watching a normal-ish murder mystery and slowly spun it out of control.

Pock Suppet: I now find that I have to look away whenever Sarah Palmer is on screen.

I can't even imagine how terrifying she would be while tripping!
posted by untuckedshirts at 9:58 AM on June 2, 2006


Also helpful: The Physics of the Lodge

Episode 14: When BOB throws You-know-who through the you-know-what has to be the most disturbing ten minutes of television ever.

Viva Grace Zabriskie! I hope someday she and Veronica Cartwright get to go crazy in a movie together.
posted by ao4047 at 10:07 AM on June 2, 2006


I had almost all of these on VHS. Each label hand-decorated for posterity.

Using graph paper, I tried in vain to map Agent Cooper's path through the White Lodge.

And yeah. Sherilynn Fenn.

Honestly, there hasn't been television that good since.
posted by grabbingsand at 10:20 AM on June 2, 2006


When this show first aired during my high school years, I never watched it. From what little I'd heard about it, it sounded really pretentious and weird for weird's sake, so I always kind of associated that with David Lynch. This was not helped when someone showed me part of FWWM, admittedly not his best work.

Then a few years back when Mulholland Drive was getting great press, I said, "What the hell?" and watched it. I loved the film and had to completely alter my opinion of Lynch. I immediately borrowed Seasons 1 & 2 from a friend and watched them (somewhat spoiled by the fact that I already knew who Bob was). Love that show, and now love a lot of what Lynch does.

Speaking of Season 2, here's what the Twin Peaks Gazette says:
Looks like Region 2 might be seeing Season 2 of Twin Peaks later this year from Paramount. The good news is that since Paramount once again owns the rights to Twin Peaks, and is making season 2 available for Region 2, Region 1 (the US) may also see Twin Peaks Season 2 around the same time or soon after. There's no definite information regarding this but this does seem to the logical conclusion.
posted by papakwanz at 10:30 AM on June 2, 2006


Best non-animated serial show of all time IMO.

Here's a great website which was, for me, nearly as thrilling at watching the original.

WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS (and a little speculation)

The Mythos of Twin Peaks
posted by plexiwatt at 10:45 AM on June 2, 2006


cidrab
posted by bardic at 10:48 AM on June 2, 2006


OK, this is a little silly/AskMeFi, but does anyone remember which episode had two boys on a bunkbed? I had most of these on VHS at one point & it would save me countless hours of fast-forwarding through these tapes to find out. I just remember being really creeped out by this one scene, and now all I can remember of it is these boys in the bunkbed...and now it's like an itch in my brain.
posted by stinkycheese at 10:58 AM on June 2, 2006


It's been fun reading about all of this again. Found a good family tree even, which is a nice compliment to the FPP. And you can listen to the soundtrack online, too. Now if only I could find a decent couple of wallpapers..
posted by rmm at 11:05 AM on June 2, 2006


rmm: http://www.tpbrewingco.com/desktop.html
posted by papakwanz at 11:28 AM on June 2, 2006


Seeing the characters brought it all back to me: the bad actors, the pointless long scenes, the hammy recurring jokes (about coffee and blueberry pie I think), the riddles that never got solved.

I liked the images of the wind blowing through the trees though. That's an image that I still think of when I walk past poplars and the wind through the leaves makes this tremendous rushing sound.
posted by jouke at 12:00 PM on June 2, 2006


"it sounded really pretentious and weird for weird's sake"

You say that like it's a bad thing.
posted by mischief at 12:09 PM on June 2, 2006


The 12 Days of Christmas - Twin Peaks style.
posted by porpoise at 12:36 PM on June 2, 2006


I &hearts twin peaks! Thank you thank you and just in time for summer break, a plethora of good links. Though I would complain semantically that is not a chart, its a montage or other. Yes, it bothers me.

Furtive let me know if you need help with that.
posted by uni verse at 5:53 PM on June 2, 2006


"it sounded really pretentious and weird for weird's sake"

That is Twin Peaks, thats why it was wonderful, along with the absurd contrasting the maudlin. I also liked how the characters on the dark side gloated and primped shamelessly, while the noble few were tortured under desparate circumstances.
posted by uni verse at 5:58 PM on June 2, 2006


>the pointless long scenes

Anyone remember the scene in the bank, with the old guy who was asked to go for help, while several of the characters were held in the vault?

That little old guy walked all the way from one side of the huge bank, to the other, at his little old doddery pace.

And I kept anticipating a cut.

At any.

Moment.

And then I realised Mr. Lynch was going to make us watch the entire, slow, journey. Ha!

The sort of sublime tv we rarely get to see.

And a pre-cursor to The Straight Story.

And FWWM is the best goddamn movie on the face of the planet.

posted by Blue Stone at 7:10 PM on June 2, 2006


And I can't close an itallics tag. Apparently.
posted by Blue Stone at 7:10 PM on June 2, 2006


I don't consider TP to be pretentious or weird for weird's sake, actually. I think the surreality of the show serves its aesthetic and narrative.
posted by papakwanz at 8:51 PM on June 2, 2006


CHERRY pie, jouke, cherry pie.

Speaking of, I've had the cherry pie (and a damn fine cup of coffee) at Twede's in Snoqualmie, WA -- aka where they filmed the diner scenes for TP. We also visited the falls, the "Great Northern," and took our photos in front of the giant log from the opening credits. Good times...

(And even though I am ostensibly straight... Sherilyn Fenn as Audrey? Oh hells yes. Come to mama... it's time for an Agent Cooper sandwich!)
posted by bitter-girl.com at 9:54 PM on June 2, 2006


I watched Twin Peaks on its first run in Finland. I was way too young to be watching it. Just checked, and I was around 10 at the time. This explains a lot. My parents watched the series with me and were fine with me watching it. I can't say I 'got' most of it at the time, but I loved it and subsequent viewings have just made me love it that much more.

Also, as has been pointed out by a few people, Audrey = sex. Tying the stem of a cherry into a knot, using only her tongue? Oh my.

Also, the owls are not what they seem.
posted by slimepuppy at 2:23 AM on June 3, 2006


stinkycheese:
I can't remember the specific episode, but it was a flashback of a young Jerry & Ben Horne sitting on their bunkbeds, enraptured by their babysitter (I think), who was doing a sexy dance with a flashlight. I'm pretty sure it was toward the end of season 2...
posted by sluggo at 4:09 PM on June 3, 2006


That sounds right sluggo, I remember the weird light too, thanks...hmm, I think I need to watch all these again.
posted by stinkycheese at 8:33 PM on June 3, 2006


It is happening again.
It is happening again.
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 8:43 PM on June 3, 2006


Just checked, and I was around 10 at the time.

I imagine it made a lot more sense to a child than it did to a teenager or grown-up.
posted by jack_mo at 5:12 PM on June 6, 2006


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