Novalis wrote:Could it perhaps make Cooper's detour through the life of Dougie seem more perilous or frustrating? I don't know.
No, she's a character in her own right, not simply there to prop up the male protagonists narrative arc. Imagining she must be subservient to the male plot cuts right to the heart of the Gender issues here.
Novalis wrote:Her behaviour lacks one of the most distinctive features of clinical narcissism, which is the pomposity and grandeur, the over-inflated sense of prestige.
It's right there in the grinning at the over-inflated Jungle-Jim and whinging about the car, her constant frustrations are at not having her over-inflated sense of prestige fulfilled.
Novalis wrote:My preference for this reading might be more charitable towards Janey but it is based on a number of assumptions about the world which KIP might not share.
No, I'd say rather you're attempting a reading of TP based on pseudo-economic theory, rather than approaching it as a pscyhologically driven surrealist drama. Less assumptions about the world, more about what you're carrying in your critical tool-bag.
The amount of stretching, ignoring the text to preserve the idea of Janey-E as an entirely 'good' person is incredible. Maybe some audiences have internalised the expression of narcissistic behaviours that they think of not showing affection to children, expecting men to provide material goods, whinging about posessions, being annoyed about having to do anything at all that doesn't provide instant gratification, and sexing on mentally handicapped people as normal, healthy, human behaviour.
On the most basic level, from Blue Velvet on through Twin Peaks, Lynch has been exposing the darker side of the middle-classes. I see no real difference here. I think Naomi put in a great performance, just a shame so many people seem to have missed what was being aimed at.
Novalis wrote:it could be argued that landing in the care of a (alleged) gold-digger, an insurance boss who's blind to the fraud going on in his own office, and a dangerous and violent pair of mob brothers yet still finding them heart-warming could indicate Cooper was never more asleep than when he woke up. I mean, it's a real stretch, as I see it, but it's possible. . It definitely adds a bleaker twist to the tale. I don't know that I need it to be this bleak though. I don't go for cynical 'gritty realism' at all, and to be honest I can't see why Lynch would rubbish his own tenderness.
This isn't really about gender, but I largely agree with the negative reading of the vegas characters, and the superficial 'heart'. Again, it's thematically consistent, it's the ant in the ear in the grass behind the picket fence, it's the grieving well-to-do father who murdered his daughter. Beyond that, when Richard/Coop meets up with Cassie/Laura, she's just murdered someone, and the eagle-scout FBI man just walks on by. It's not particularly gritty or realistic, but exposing the darker underbelly.