Wow. I remember being in this thread during the days when it was blasphemy to speak ill of the the return.
Now it's over 300 pages, and as many in this thread predicted, after the suspense was lifted and it was all laid out, Season 3 is in an easier beast to judge for exactly what it is, and all sorts of critics are coming out of the woodwork.
Not trying to be snooty and superior. I think everyone's reaction to this polarising series are valid. Whilst they're have been psychotic defenders on both side of the debate as to the worth of this thing--Frankly I'm beyond sides, but it's good to have a place to lay out my own feelings after the fact.
All being said, this was a fascinating experiment of a series, the fact that it was such a non comforist piece of television remains a favourable aspect. For me, it seems clear that the concept of reviving Twin Peaks with the iconic Agent Cooper as a mere shadow-- was a paramount mistake of narrative choice. It was as bad a decision as we all felt at the start, and remained so until the end. What we got was an emptional and profound piece of art, which expressed accurately the despair and longing of the return of a 25 year old murder mystery, and the age of the creators-- existential ennui and trauma---from a series which had long devolved into an extra dimensional x files story.
There were many intense and interesting moments in this series, enough to make it fascinating. As a story in its own right, it was beyond terrible. In fact, if the series didn't have the original icon to lean on, what we got would be purely unwatchable.
This series was full of conceptual bungles, terrible devices, poorly formed plots, bad fiction that lead to dead ends. Some of the special effects and dialogues bordered on the most hilariously terribly works of art-- from Ed Wood to Neil Breen to Tommy Wiseau which will no doubt grant it cult status for years to come.
In a final analysis, the difference between what the creators wanted to depict and what came out on screen-- told more, I think, than the creators were probably willing to confess.
If one were to pick out the positives of this lengthy and at times arduous, even tedious 18 hours-- they might sight; some fascinating new characters, the Mitchum brothers stellar performance, Naomi Watts and Kyle Machlachlan fulfilling their left of field roles with wilderness cunning. A solid core police procedural, reuniting cult characters Gordon Cole, Albert Rosenfield, and new faces Tammy and Diane-- in a narrative which may have been interesting had it not strayed to far into its own insular, deatached world-- add meanwhile an enlivened core at twin Peaks Sherrif department with highlighted Bobby Briggs, Frank Truman and Hawk-- who unfortunately never found satisfying resolution in the half arsed deus ex machina show down in part 17.
As a self homage to David Lynch, we saw some visual treats-- from the haunting episode 8 channeling Kubrick and eraserhead-- to the Mullholland drive finale.
What failed was everything else along the way. Unfortunately strong acting from prolific actors such as Mathew Lillard and the detectives Fusco was not enough to forgive the poor trail of red herrings and failed leads which suffered from pointless abandon. From Jade, to the assassins working for Loraine, to Duncan Todd and many other byline characters on the way-- the plot never managed to convince the audience that there was any purpose to the building 'suspense'. This caused nauseous and dispiriting groans, from the revelation of Jacobys shovels, to the pointless 119 lady, to the random scabs in the roadhouse, Jerry Horne, Audrey, Richard, Becky, Red, the fireman, number based clues like 4:30 and coordinates of Mr C--- none of the developments of this series felt worthwhile.
It wasn't merely that the payoff was dismal, there was a missed directive-- dare I say -- incompetence -- in the story telling.
Any first grade film maker or screenwriter will be taught that any introduction in a narrative should meet a pay off. This story not only failed to do so, it took a strong world, already built that was hard to fuck up -- and mutilated it so pathetically, like a child kicking over their own sandcastle they had built. It doesn't take a kettle born Phillip Jeffries to realise there is something slippery going on inside this project.
I hate to put sole blame on one individual-- however, just as many slammed Mark Frosts secret history book for displaying his conspiratorial tendencies-- the faults of the return seem to lay primarily on poor choices by the returns director David Lynch.
Yes, Lynch is a seventy year old geriatric who hasn't made anything for twenty years. Perhaps we can forgive him some for his inability to make a coherent narrative. I might be more willing to do so, were it not for the so obvious points of narcissism which detracted from this show.
The Gordon Cole story, wasn't what I invested myself in. Yes, Gordon Cole can still get an erection. Great. Good, he hangs out with French girls and likes looking at Chrysta Bella arse. I might forgive this if he was not so distracted being on screen he was capable of still doing his job as director. Evidently, he wasn't.
Jai Do-- represents everything an ageing David Lynch though he could get away with, and couldn't. Unfortunately, this old dog has no new tricks. Everything we've seen in this series was a tried and overplayed device of Lynch's hay day.
The most dissapointing aspect of the finale, was that Lynch couldn't stop at merely ruining the return, he had to turn both Fire Walk with me and the original series into a pointless dream sequence with no context or meaning.
I remember in year four when my grade school teacher scolded my creative writing and said 'No matter what you do... never finish a story with the banal conclusion 'it was all a dream.'
Apparently whilst Lynch was studying painting he never graduated from creative fiction class.'
But sorry if watching Kyle Machhlachlans face superimposed over the climax of an 18 hour series wasn't enough to make me praise this work as Lynch's swan song.
He may stilll be able to get it up, but Lynch is clearly beyond the day's of being able to weave a marginally coherent narrative.
"Albert, I'm sorry, but I don't understand this situation at all"