Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

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Joe McCluskey
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Joe McCluskey » Sun Oct 08, 2017 5:35 pm

The Gazebo wrote:
Joe McCluskey wrote:Some of you seemingly enjoyed my video on David Lynch’s self-indulgence from about a month ago, so I decided to make a new video talking about a few more issues with the show, primarily Evil Cooper's character and the lack of true mystery. For those interested, here’s a video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iB7fgQffhE 8)


Aye, good work - you make several good observations, and manage to put them into more coherent words than what I'm able to. :)

I mentioned myself in one of the previous posts how much more menacing an Evil Coop being a player in the town of TP would have been, and that he never really posed a threat to our favourite characters, like Bob or WIndom Earle (for all his hyperbolic mannerisms) did. Come to think of it, it's very, very strange that they decided to have either of the two Coops interact with the locals just at the very end.

Another good point is "meant nothing in the grand scheme of things", and "almost nothing from the show meant much when it was all said and done". This is probably one of the key issues people like us had with the show. There was not a story that we could grow into given enough time; just 'sketches' as Gabriel has put it earlier. It's like they had all these random ideas - dreamt up at various points during the last 25-30 years - which they just built the various episodes around, before thinking: "Hey, we've got a 2-hour finale coming up. What should we do?"

Furthermore, great observation about just being told about (as opposed to watching) Evil Coop's treatment of Diane and Audrey. I keep coming back to the 'killer's reveal' scene of season 2. Was there anything remotely as disturbing and haunting a pay-off as that in the Return? I can't think of anything that even reaches its knees in terms of impact.

"Nothing was at stake", you say. I wholeheartedly agree. That's why this show - despite having some great scenes, interesting set-ups and the occasional foreboding atmosphere - was a wasted opportunity like I could never have imagined beforehand.

Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! I must give credit to user Steve Liam—who was generous enough to allow me to talk about & expand on some of his criticisms. I recommend that you read some of his posts on this thread if you haven’t already.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Agent Earle » Sun Oct 08, 2017 11:43 pm

Audrey Horne wrote:Thank you for your videos, Joe! They're perfect.

I'm still in shock by the whole Return. The only real concrete mystery to me in the end was how Lynch and Frost constructed this ultimate mess. There was so much great potential... and this coming from someone who hates most of the second season, and thought the only way they could go was up with anything- anything! - they did.


So you basically belong among the Profoundly Disappointed then, Audrey? Funny, your comments/posts during the run didn't strike me as though they're comming from someone who's all that critical of The Return. I guess you decided to hold off a general judgement until the whole thing was over, huh? Anyways, it's nice to have something the haters and the lovers of S 2 can agree on :) You could say we agree about the greatness of S 1, but I'm not all that fond of it or, better put, think it's overrated - it's still good, but it didn't blow my mind the way S 2 did, that's for sure. Whereas The Return (I refuse to call it or even think about it as a "S 3") is just ... YECCCHHH to me.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Mon Oct 09, 2017 3:47 am

Joe McCluskey wrote:Some of you seemingly enjoyed my video on David Lynch’s self-indulgence from about a month ago, so I decided to make a new video talking about a few more issues with the show, primarily Evil Cooper's character and the lack of true mystery. For those interested, here’s a video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iB7fgQffhE 8)


What do you mean by the lack of 'true mystery'? Did you really think The Return was going to revolve around a new murder mystery, like the original series (as a lot of media outlets speculated)? There is no way Lynch and Frost were going to do something so formulaic: It was fresh and new in 1990- in 2017, it's been done and done again and again (Veronica Mars, The Killing, and dozens of other T.V. series.)
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Joe McCluskey » Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:40 am

mtwentz wrote:
Joe McCluskey wrote:Some of you seemingly enjoyed my video on David Lynch’s self-indulgence from about a month ago, so I decided to make a new video talking about a few more issues with the show, primarily Evil Cooper's character and the lack of true mystery. For those interested, here’s a video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iB7fgQffhE 8)


What do you mean by the lack of 'true mystery'? Did you really think The Return was going to revolve around a new murder mystery, like the original series (as a lot of media outlets speculated)? There is no way Lynch and Frost were going to do something so formulaic: It was fresh and new in 1990- in 2017, it's been done and done again and again (Veronica Mars, The Killing, and dozens of other T.V. series.)

I didn't expect there to be a new murder mystery, and there didn't have to be one either. There just needs to be something there to grip the audience and keep them engaged; however, there is nothing at stake during THE RETURN. Characters & "plots" don't connect in any meaningful way, and as mentioned in the video, Lynch/Frost attempt to present things as mysteries which actually aren't--e.g., Whether Richard Horne is the son of Audrey/Evil Coop.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby douglasb » Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:28 pm

I think it shows remarkable writing craft to think Lynch and Frost must have sat and discussed whether or not doppelgangers would have properly functioning testicles. They had to have that conversation, right? Otherwise how could BadCoop father a child? Man, the sheer depth of world building they went into.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Mon Oct 09, 2017 1:00 pm

Joe McCluskey wrote:
mtwentz wrote:
Joe McCluskey wrote:Some of you seemingly enjoyed my video on David Lynch’s self-indulgence from about a month ago, so I decided to make a new video talking about a few more issues with the show, primarily Evil Cooper's character and the lack of true mystery. For those interested, here’s a video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iB7fgQffhE 8)


What do you mean by the lack of 'true mystery'? Did you really think The Return was going to revolve around a new murder mystery, like the original series (as a lot of media outlets speculated)? There is no way Lynch and Frost were going to do something so formulaic: It was fresh and new in 1990- in 2017, it's been done and done again and again (Veronica Mars, The Killing, and dozens of other T.V. series.)

I didn't expect there to be a new murder mystery, and there didn't have to be one either. There just needs to be something there to grip the audience and keep them engaged; however, there is nothing at stake during THE RETURN. Characters & "plots" don't connect in any meaningful way, and as mentioned in the video, Lynch/Frost attempt to present things as mysteries which actually aren't--e.g., Whether Richard Horne is the son of Audrey/Evil Coop.


Well, I can only speak for myself, but I was thoroughly engaged as a viewer all the way through. I felt like the stakes were high, but I understand why most viewers had a hard time with it: the plot was highly complex and so it was hard at times to define what The Return was really about. In fact, the plot did not really come into full focus until Part 17, pretty late in the game for a lot of folks.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Joe McCluskey » Mon Oct 09, 2017 1:39 pm

mtwentz wrote:
Joe McCluskey wrote:
mtwentz wrote:
What do you mean by the lack of 'true mystery'? Did you really think The Return was going to revolve around a new murder mystery, like the original series (as a lot of media outlets speculated)? There is no way Lynch and Frost were going to do something so formulaic: It was fresh and new in 1990- in 2017, it's been done and done again and again (Veronica Mars, The Killing, and dozens of other T.V. series.)

I didn't expect there to be a new murder mystery, and there didn't have to be one either. There just needs to be something there to grip the audience and keep them engaged; however, there is nothing at stake during THE RETURN. Characters & "plots" don't connect in any meaningful way, and as mentioned in the video, Lynch/Frost attempt to present things as mysteries which actually aren't--e.g., Whether Richard Horne is the son of Audrey/Evil Coop.


Well, I can only speak for myself, but I was thoroughly engaged as a viewer all the way through. I felt like the stakes were high, but I understand why most viewers had a hard time with it: the plot was highly complex and so it was hard at times to define what The Return was really about. In fact, the plot did not really come into full focus until Part 17, pretty late in the game for a lot of folks.

Is the plot really "highly complex?" Such plots usually have moving pieces & characters with both proper setups & payoffs, which later connect in a clever fashion. What happens in THE RETURN? As you mention, the show has some elements which viewers have a hard time with, but that can be attributed to poor writing & convoluted nonsense rather than some highly intricate plot. None of the tiny, pseudo-mysteries in the show amount to anything important.

Waiting 17 episodes for a payoff can be acceptable under certain conditions. If the journey & destination are satisfying, and the audience has reason to care throughout, then its alright. But the problem with THE RETURN is that the events that start unfolding during Episode 17 have little to no relation to any of the preceding 16 episodes, further illustrating how insignificant everything that happened earlier in the season really was.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Shloogorgh » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:03 pm

mtwentz wrote:

Well, I can only speak for myself, but I was thoroughly engaged as a viewer all the way through. I felt like the stakes were high, but I understand why most viewers had a hard time with it: the plot was highly complex and so it was hard at times to define what The Return was really about. In fact, the plot did not really come into full focus until Part 17, pretty late in the game for a lot of folks.


Actually, I found the plot to be extremely straightforward up until the last two episodes. Not predictable, certainly, but I wouldn't call it complex. It's complexity is an illusion created by the way it is cut up and pieced back together, withholding information, and by the sheer volume of plotlines (many of which go nowhere).

It wasn't all that ambiguous (with exceptions like episode 8 ) until the ending. I think I would have enjoyed the Return more if there were more episodes like e18 earlier on. But to spend so much time building straightforward storylines and not resolve many of them (and the convergence of the two Coopers handled in the least satisfying way) was what frustrated me, not it being too complex.
Last edited by Shloogorgh on Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:37 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Shloogorgh » Mon Oct 09, 2017 2:12 pm

Also I might have enjoyed the farcical way episode 17 resolved the main plot if it had happened much earlier. Can you imagine a version of the Return where the first 4 episodes happen, and then maybe we spend an entire episode or two with Dougie coop where at the end he shocks himself back into being. Then take an episode or two to get Mr C and Cooper to Twin Peaks. If the plot had that kind of momentum, it would have been less rage inducing to have BOB bested by Freddie. Because then the baggage of the previous show would be shed by the midway point, and there'd be time for Cooper to spend some time in the town of Twin Peaks and to really properly set up his voyage to the alternate dimension. And then there'd still be time to spend more than a single episode in this ominous otherworld.

Ah, but I'm just torturing myself with thoughts of what could have been. I need to stop that and let it go.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby rugerblackhawk357 » Mon Oct 09, 2017 5:54 pm

Shloogorgh wrote:Also I might have enjoyed the farcical way episode 17 resolved the main plot if it had happened much earlier. Can you imagine a version of the Return where the first 4 episodes happen, and then maybe we spend an entire episode or two with Dougie coop where at the end he shocks himself back into being. Then take an episode or two to get Mr C and Cooper to Twin Peaks. If the plot had that kind of momentum, it would have been less rage inducing to have BOB bested by Freddie. Because then the baggage of the previous show would be shed by the midway point, and there'd be time for Cooper to spend some time in the town of Twin Peaks and to really properly set up his voyage to the alternate dimension. And then there'd still be time to spend more than a single episode in this ominous otherworld.

Ah, but I'm just torturing myself with thoughts of what could have been. I need to stop that and let it go.


that way lies madness. twin peaks was just a novel show that everyone thought was edgy back in the 80's. people like me saw it when they were 12, re-discovered it in the 90's and wanted an answer after the 2nd season. well, we got that answer. it was just a t.v. show. that's it. just walk away. my hope is one day we will search for these forums and receive the answer. 404.Meaning and Story Not Found
Sometimes i wish i was better off dead. No wait. Not me. You.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Tue Oct 10, 2017 4:43 am

Joe McCluskey wrote:
Is the plot really "highly complex?" Such plots usually have moving pieces & characters with both proper setups & payoffs, which later connect in a clever fashion. What happens in THE RETURN? As you mention, the show has some elements which viewers have a hard time with, but that can be attributed to poor writing & convoluted nonsense rather than some highly intricate plot. None of the tiny, pseudo-mysteries in the show amount to anything important.


Maybe not 'highly complex' but definitely not east to explain in a soundbite. There is no 'who killed Laura Palmer' hook that is easy to digest for the casual viewer.

But the problem with THE RETURN is that the events that start unfolding during Episode 17 have little to no relation to any of the preceding 16 episodes, further illustrating how insignificant everything that happened earlier in the season really was.


Not sure what you mean here. There was a final confrontation in the Sheriff's station, which had been building up for the previous 16 episodes. Mr. C was seeking coordinates and he stopped at nothing to get them. Cooper was in a fog stuck in Dougie's life, but we pretty much knew he would would wake up at some point and get to Twin Peaks to try and stop Mr. C's plot. What we didn't know until ep. 17, what was hidden from the viewer, was the true endgame: Judy. Both Mr. C and Cooper were seeking Judy, for diametrically opposite reasons.

So nothing that happened before was insignificant. I guess you could argue that the whole Dougie subplot was unnecessary to the main plot, and that's true to a certain extent. I for one enjoyed the Dougie subplot and thought it had a great payoff at the end with Cooper's final scenes with Sonny Jim and Janey-E.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Tue Oct 10, 2017 5:31 am

The Gazebo wrote:Come to think of it, it's very, very strange that they decided to have either of the two Coops interact with the locals just at the very end.


I’ve thought about this too. As someone who entered the season hoping for a largely nostalgia-free “2017 Lynch” experience — whatever that might entail — I have to say that I was completely unprepared for how little we got of Dale in the town of Twin Peaks. His love affair with the town was THE driving force of the original show, and it does feel like a bit of a missed opportunity, or even a taunt, that we didn’t get to revisit that — even from a darker perspective with the doppel visiting the diner, etc. Unlike some other choices made in the course of S3, I don’t think this was a case of external circumstances influencing storytelling choices. For instance, certain character arcs were undeniably informed to one degree or another by limited actor availability. Beymer, Tamblyn, Fenn, Lipton and DPK pretty clearly shot all their scenes in a few days with very few set/location changes and minimal interactions with other cast members. While that aspect of things is a little distracting, and highlights what some in this thread are calling the “sketch show” nature of the season, I accept it as part of the reality of L/F bringing to life a miracle none of us thought was possible. I think it will even become part of the show’s charm, just as many of S2’s quirks and flaws have for many. However, the lack of Cooper in the town of Twin Peaks feels like something different. Kyle’s availability throughout the production seems to have been pretty wide open, and his seemingly limited presence during the Washington shoot strikes me as more a creative choice than a logistical one. But why?

I think L/F certainly understood the expectations, and deliberately subverted them to convey whatever it is they were getting at (“you can’t go back” seems like the obvious theme, but I do think it’s a bit more nuanced than that — maybe “you can’t go back, but if you do and rely on a dude in a green glove to clean up your mess, be prepared to become a superimposed disembodied head and then to be transported to an alternate reality”?). The Sunset Blvd. clip reminds us that Norma Desmond’s dream of “the old team back together” is a sad, impossible delusion, and I don’t think it’s a coincidence that DKL let that line play directly before the reference to Gordon Cole and the events leading to Cooper’s awakening.

As Coop heads to Twin Peaks (in the limo of two murderous gangsters), he is oddly effervescent and perhaps too overconfident in his ability to drop back into the townspeople’s lives after a quarter century and save the day (from events wrought by his doppel which are, to one degree or another, his own damn fault. We know the doppel shares Coop’s memories from FWWM — does Dale remember/know about Audrey’s rape?). He calls to tell Harry to put the coffee on....and gets the wrong Sheriff Truman. I think this moment is incredibly telling, in terms of what L/F were trying to get at. I really wonder how different everything would have been if Ontkean had been in the show. Would there have been more of a reunion vibe, even if the approach were sad/dark? In S3 as it stands, the subject is sort of flirted with and then simply abandoned. Coop never even acknowledges Albert; he doesn’t ask how Harry is and no one bothers to tell him. Heck, the show devoted screentime to Ben Horne getting an update on Harry’s condition, but not Dale?!

Most of L/F’s narrative subversion choices in S3 (Dougie, Audrey, Part 18, the various standalone vignettes/slices of life) work for me like gangbusters. But that whole sheriff’s station sequence in Part 17 is just kind of bewildering. As I’ve outlined above, I think I kind of understand what they were trying to get across, and I respect it in concept. But in execution...eek. My heart sank to my feet on first viewing, and it’s a testament to how strong the back half of Part 17 and Part 18 were that L/F won me back.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Kilmoore » Tue Oct 10, 2017 5:43 am

mtwentz wrote:Not sure what you mean here. There was a final confrontation in the Sheriff's station, which had been building up for the previous 16 episodes.

Well.. no. Even without the previous 16 episodes, we knew that Cooper's doppelganger was evil. So whatever the reason for him arriving at the Sheriff's station was, we knew there would be trouble. And Cooper rushing in just as Mr. C was shot, well, it didn't matter where he came from, he could have just run directly from Glastonbury Grove. This could have happened in episode one, and we wouldn't have missed anything.

mtwentz wrote:Mr. C was seeking coordinates and he stopped at nothing to get them.

Except that the Fireman pulled a fast one on him and sent him elsewhere, so there was never any threat from Mr. C to the main characters. He was just a pawn in a game we can't understand, and therefore pointless to the story.

mtwentz wrote:What we didn't know until ep. 17, what was hidden from the viewer, was the true endgame: Judy. Both Mr. C and Cooper were seeking Judy, for diametrically opposite reasons.

We don't know why Mr.C was looking for Judy. Actually, we do know that he was confused when Jeffries talked about Judy, so Mr. C didn't really know much about Judy at all.

Where as Cooper had apparently planned for Judy 25 years ago. Which we found out about in episode 17, thus eliminating the need for episodes 1-16.

There were entertaining things in episodes 1-16 but they were a different story, with barely anything linking them to episodes 17 and 18.
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Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby yaxomoxay » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:08 am

Kilmoore wrote:Except that the Fireman pulled a fast one on him and sent him elsewhere, so there was never any threat from Mr. C to the main characters. He was just a pawn in a game we can't understand, and therefore pointless to the story.


That’s not true. The Fireman’s plan needed some events to happen in a precise order. The trap was successful only because Andy was ready for it (also Bobby, Hawk, and Sheriff Truman were somewhat ready). They had to go through understanding the duality of Cooper, and they had to make some experiences that allowed them to understand it. From the weird insurance guy at the beginning, to an exploration of the Lodge, it was all a long investigative voyage.
The TP Sheriff’s group did a throughout investigation which was not merely procedural. It did start procedurally, trying to find some evidence that was allegedly missing from 25 years prior, but then they had to get to know stuff that that wasn’t in their jurisdiction, so to speak.
You know, in real life it’s not easy to believe in doppelgangers, and a Major that travels in time and plants clues all around in order to save a guy who’s actually two guys but he’s one.
If you find a piece of paper with “SMITH/SMITH” written on it you are not going to believe that there are two agents by the name Smith which are the same person but two different people at the same time. Mr. C was simply delayed by the Fireman; he arrived in TP, he arrived near the Palmer’s house. The trap worked because Mr C. was not aware that the Sheriff’s group had enough information to understand who he really was. That’s why we probably have a glance of what it could’ve been if they were not ready (when the Firemen shows Lucy to Andy in that strange vision that never happens). Let me point this out: if goodCoop had arrived to save the day, THEN the Sheriff’s plot would’ve been useless.
The Fireman also needed Cooper to be ready at the exact time. He had to make the phone call to Sheriff Truman (and Lucy!) at that precise moment. Not earlier, not later. We can go on and on and trace it back 25 years. In other words, the trap was not moving Mr. C’s direction (or, not only that) but setting up an entire system that could halt, trap, fight and kill BOB. This included changing people’s belief systems, including Lucy’s which HAD to understand cell phones.

I will repeat this ‘till the day I die (and enter the Black Lodge). After watching the whole thing in a sitting, I see how reasoning by episode # really alters the flow of the movie. Once the flow gets going, the continuous need for a payoff vanishes completely. I feel that watching one or two episodes is like watching one or two scenes of S1E1 one week apart. I seriously can’t think of watching this thing in any other way than a full sitting (maybe two, two days in a row). It changed even my opinion of Becky, a character I could not stand before and that now I appreciate quite much.
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Re: Twin Peaks Return: The Profoundly Disappointed Support Group (SPOILERS)

Postby Kilmoore » Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:25 am

yaxomoxay wrote:That’s not true.

Bloody hell. Am I really going to have to rewatch the whole thing? You've certainly laid out a case for it.

I'm going to need a bit of time to let go of the cynicism I currently hold for the season, but maybe one day.

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