Gender in Twin Peaks: The Return

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Rhodes
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby Rhodes » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:23 am

I'm the Muffin wrote:
anthoto1 wrote:Analyzing is not a problem, obviously. Analyzing a work of art with a political agenda and seeing it through this lense only is. It's very sad as it prevents these people for appreciating these works for what they really are as they're trying to make them look as they want them to be.


Yes, I think this is the crux of the matter. The show isn't interested in whether or not, for example, a character like Candie has 'agency'. That is a 3rd wave feminist preoccupation. The show is not better or worse for conforming to commodified social justice standards. The relevance of these issues, while maybe worth touching upon--well, their importance has been blown out of all proportion, to put it mildly.

Yes, it is political. I suspected, before the season aired, that the SJW crowd would inevitably watch the show through this lens, that Lynch would be scrutinised for how closely he conforms to recent trends in social correctness--but I actually expected the lack of 'diversity' to be the sticking point. I'm happily relieved to have not seen much of that--but instead we have this. It's a barrier to actual aesthetic discussion.


Well said!!!!

It would have been totally okay if Lynch would have had an artistic fetish for naive, dependent blondes getting raped and dominated. Some artists like to paint the life of farmers over and over again, others always use the colour blue, others like the theme of cruelties against women.

Of course you can like a certain artist better than the other, but is complete nonsense to be "disappointed" in a filmmaker because his female characters have too little agency or are portrayed in a certain way.
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Troubbble
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Re: Gender in Twin Peaks: The Return

Postby Troubbble » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:42 am

Troubbble wrote:
Hester Prynne wrote:Of the new female characters we've seen, five have already been killed off (Tracy, Daria, Phyllis, Lorraine, Miriam - did I leave anyone out?). It feels like their only purpose in the storyline is to get killed off and advance the narrative (Mr. Reindeer had a great post on the other thread that went into this some.). I think that is why I was so exasperated with Candie's character the other night - I was hoping for more because I know Lynch and Frost can deliver more, but to me it fell short.


So far, the story has demanded that several characters die. But would it have been preferable to have those brutalized characters be males, if it meant five fewer roles for women in the series?

Just spitballing here. Wondering what people think...


Still thinking about this, and want to make a final point... While some of these murdered female characters were clearly lacking in depth, I think we're also painting with too broad a brush.

Take Miriam as an example. She was only meant to feature in 3-4 scenes and was ultimately fated to be killed by Richard, but even in that limited screen time she was clearly shown to be a brave and virtuous person, determined to stand up to Richard as even his family seems too frightened to do. I expect her bravery to be rewarded through Lucy—another courageous female, despite any quirks! She took awful close notice of Deputy Douchebag's shenanigans with the mail, and I see no point in filming that scene if it won't pay off satisfyingly later on.
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby dustoff » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:52 am

Rhodes wrote:
I'm the Muffin wrote:
anthoto1 wrote:Analyzing is not a problem, obviously. Analyzing a work of art with a political agenda and seeing it through this lense only is. It's very sad as it prevents these people for appreciating these works for what they really are as they're trying to make them look as they want them to be.


Yes, I think this is the crux of the matter. The show isn't interested in whether or not, for example, a character like Candie has 'agency'. That is a 3rd wave feminist preoccupation. The show is not better or worse for conforming to commodified social justice standards. The relevance of these issues, while maybe worth touching upon--well, their importance has been blown out of all proportion, to put it mildly.

Yes, it is political. I suspected, before the season aired, that the SJW crowd would inevitably watch the show through this lens, that Lynch would be scrutinised for how closely he conforms to recent trends in social correctness--but I actually expected the lack of 'diversity' to be the sticking point. I'm happily relieved to have not seen much of that--but instead we have this. It's a barrier to actual aesthetic discussion.


Well said!!!!

It would have been totally okay if Lynch would have had an artistic fetish for naive, dependent blondes getting raped and dominated. Some artists like to paint the life of farmers over and over again, others always use the colour blue, others like the theme of cruelties against women.

Of course you can like a certain artist better than the other, but is complete nonsense to be "disappointed" in a filmmaker because his female characters have too little agency or are portrayed in a certain way.


Are you guys even reading this thread?

Not one person has complained about TP's female characters having a lack of "agency."

Not one person has expressed feeling "disappointed" that female characters are portrayed thusly.

Yet you put these words in quotes, as if anyone actually did so.

For the millionth time, enough with the straw man arguments. Your claims might hold a little more water if you'd stop railing against arguments that LITERALLY NO ONE IS MAKING, and putting words in the mouths of others.
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dustoff
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby dustoff » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:53 am

[Ignore, dupe post.]
Last edited by dustoff on Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:56 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby dustoff » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:56 am

[Ignore, dupe post.]
Rhodes
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby Rhodes » Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:57 am

dustoff wrote:For the millionth time, enough with the straw man arguments. Your claims might hold a little more water if you'd stop railing against arguments that LITERALLY NO ONE IS MAKING, and putting words in the mouths of others.


This is not true. I've heard statements like this over and over again (both explicitely and clearly implied).
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Re: Gender in Twin Peaks: The Return

Postby Cipher » Wed Jul 19, 2017 12:08 pm

Troubbble wrote:So far, the story has demanded that several characters die. But would it have been preferable to have those brutalized characters be males, if it meant five fewer roles for women in the series?

Just spitballing here. Wondering what people think...

That's honestly an interesting question.

I mean, part of the interesting thing/disconnect here to me is that there has been opportunity to linger on male violence, but so far it hasn't, so it's clearly making portrayal of violence against women a focus. We don't see Jack's death; we don't linger on Mr. C being shot, or his brutalizing the guard outside the cabin, or the explosive death of the car thieves; the beating of the casino owner isn't explicit or graphic. Any scenes of real horror have been aimed at women (sole incident of the boy at the hit-and-run notwithstanding).

At the same time, while men have gotten to do quite a bit, and interact with each other in various ways, there's a staggeringly small number of women present who haven't been touched by abuse or violence, and we don't get to see them do much outside of that element. There's Tammy the ingenue and Janey-E the cipher, outside of bit players (my eye is on Lucy for doing something in future episodes, but thus far she's been comedic relief). We still only really see them interacting with men. Gone are the Donnas and Audreys of the original run, or, even among characters who are trapped in abusive relationships, the intimate moments of female-female conversation we get between Norma and Shelley, Donna and Maddy, Donna and Laura (FWWM), etc.

So there is a bit of a disconnect where it's way more focused on violence against women than against men, but also, as a pattern, not as interested in women when they aren't tied to abuse as it is men. That just -- doesn't quite track yet. It isn't as balanced in its portrayals of both genders as the original run, nor as hauntingly intimate in its depictions of the emotional states of the abused as Inland Empire or Fire Walk With Me. Or, heck, both the female-female interactions and haunting intimacy of Mulholland Drive (which I don't think is quite as much a meditation as gendered experience, so I didn't bring it up at first.)

I'm not sure, then, if your suggestion would help, but I sense in some ways the balance is off compared to other Lynch works in terms of communicating the things it seems to want to communicate, with regards to violence and gender. (Not to call it a message-oriented work; but I mean as far as communicating the emotional states of a gendered world as other Lynch pieces do.)

If men were as often targeted by lingering violence as women in the show, it might ring differently, yeah; its goals and patterns would feel different. I'm not sure it'd all sing at that point, but it'd be different, for sure.
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby 4815162342 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:29 pm

Rhodes wrote:
I'm the Muffin wrote:
anthoto1 wrote:Analyzing is not a problem, obviously. Analyzing a work of art with a political agenda and seeing it through this lense only is. It's very sad as it prevents these people for appreciating these works for what they really are as they're trying to make them look as they want them to be.


Yes, I think this is the crux of the matter. The show isn't interested in whether or not, for example, a character like Candie has 'agency'. That is a 3rd wave feminist preoccupation. The show is not better or worse for conforming to commodified social justice standards. The relevance of these issues, while maybe worth touching upon--well, their importance has been blown out of all proportion, to put it mildly.

Yes, it is political. I suspected, before the season aired, that the SJW crowd would inevitably watch the show through this lens, that Lynch would be scrutinised for how closely he conforms to recent trends in social correctness--but I actually expected the lack of 'diversity' to be the sticking point. I'm happily relieved to have not seen much of that--but instead we have this. It's a barrier to actual aesthetic discussion.


Well said!!!!

It would have been totally okay if Lynch would have had an artistic fetish for naive, dependent blondes getting raped and dominated. Some artists like to paint the life of farmers over and over again, others always use the colour blue, others like the theme of cruelties against women.

Of course you can like a certain artist better than the other, but is complete nonsense to be "disappointed" in a filmmaker because his female characters have too little agency or are portrayed in a certain way.


I will say I am disappointed as you say. But, I think it a way it isn't different from being disappointed in, say, the characterization in general. It's just pointing out a particular aspect of the characterization. For example, so far, all the casino owners in Las Vegas are corrupt gangster types.
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby wAtChLaR » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:32 pm

4815162342 wrote:
Rhodes wrote: For example, so far, all the casino owners in Las Vegas are corrupt gangster types.

ummm i think this may be a fair generalization LOL
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Re: Lynch, Frost and women

Postby 4815162342 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:43 pm

starmand wrote:I don't think I've ever posted before, if I have it was long ago; but I've been reading and enjoying the forum for years. Have to say I'm really disappointed that the mods gave in to the pressure and split this off into its own thread. If discussing gender in the context of a DAVID LYNCH SHOW is not "on topic," then what the hell is? After seeing initial responses to Part 10, I was of the mind that folks might be getting too wound up about its treatment of women as compared to the rest of the series. But after reading the frankly sickening responses in the other topic, I'm not sure. If people can watch David Lynch's work and still come away with the mindset that "PC culture is terrible" and "SJWs are ruining the world," then I have to wonder if the violence he portrays against women (which I've always found to be decidedly not glorified and presented through a somewhat feminist lens) might actually be as irresponsible as some critics claim it to be. Perhaps it's not worth putting art like that into the world if one runs the risk of firing up these egoistic man-children with their "politics have no place in art" diatribes, who seem utterly incapable of discussing the merits of a work through any sort of social filter except their own (which they conveniently pretend does not exist). Typical white male positioning white maleness as the "default" ideological position and anyone else bringing their lens to it is "politicizing" a work.

Apologies, I don't want to derail this thread too. But I found the responses in the Part 10 thread deeply upsetting, even more so because they were able to get what they want. David Lynch is one of my favorite directors, and it pains me to think that his fan-base can be so reactionary when I feel a deep thread of openness runs through his work.


Yes. I think this new series has exposed an ugly thread in his work. I don't think that something is bad because of its fans' behavior, but it is disheartening, and I'm not 100% sure they are wrong about Lynch. He makes magic happen on screen, and that's why we are all here, presumably, but it has an unpleasant price.
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Re: Lynch, Frost and women

Postby wAtChLaR » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:45 pm

4815162342 wrote:
Yes. I think this new series has exposed an ugly thread in his work. I don't think that something is bad because of its fans' behavior, but it is disheartening, and I'm not 100% sure they are wrong about Lynch. He makes magic happen on screen, and that's why we are all here, presumably, but it has an unpleasant price.


how is exposing systemic misogyny and patriarchal abuse of women an ugly thread? was FWWM an ugly thread about incest and sexual abuse?
he throws it in our faces so we FACE it...

David Lynch is NOT a misogynist
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Re: Lynch, Frost and women

Postby wAtChLaR » Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:06 pm

wAtChLaR wrote:
4815162342 wrote:
Yes. I think this new series has exposed an ugly thread in his work. I don't think that something is bad because of its fans' behavior, but it is disheartening, and I'm not 100% sure they are wrong about Lynch. He makes magic happen on screen, and that's why we are all here, presumably, but it has an unpleasant price.


how is exposing systemic misogyny and patriarchal abuse of women an ugly thread? was FWWM an ugly thread about incest and sexual abuse?
he throws it in our faces so we FACE it...

David Lynch is NOT a misogynist


i'm not a dick btw
i'm just someone who has worked as a child trauma therapist for 14 years....and the Peaks scenarios are literally nothing compared to the horrific stories i have heard about torture related abuse of children and domestic violence against women AND men!
art reflects life...i believe that wholeheartedly

lynch has actually toned it down for his viewers his entire career
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Re: Gender in Twin Peaks: The Return

Postby sylvia_north » Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:37 pm

Troubbble wrote: Without pointing to a specific post, I have felt at various times that people unjustifiably suggested a degree of misogyny in his work.
I don't think that's true, regardless of what occurs in The Return - but even still, think we have seen far too little of the complete picture to make broad generalizations about the female characters and how they are portrayed, etc.


You can't say there's no reason to suggest misogyny in his work when the point of the show is male violence, as many have noted, which is 'just realism,' which others have noted.
In the Vulture Eamon Farren interview he said he knew what he was "putting out into the world." So yeah, those close to the source know this is the thing that it is, which makes it a justifiable subject. We need a more complete picture to fairly talk about literally everything else in the plot, too, y'know. Observing misogyny still isn't saying it shouldn't be there, if that's the strawman you were attacking, nor is anyone calling Lynch a misogynist when they observe misogyny. I don't know the guy.

Back on topic...

I have only been in the Return a short time, but in that time, I've seen women stomped like ants, indecency, dishonor and indignity. Murder is a faceless event here. A statistic to be tallied up at the end of the day. The 100% female deaths (edit: except Sam, sorry Sam. you seemed nice) so far affects no man, woman or child because their life had no meaning here. Not a one. It's a way of living that never really vanished, not even in Twin Peaks.
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Re: Part 10 - Laura is the one (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:05 pm

wAtChLaR wrote:
4815162342 wrote:
Rhodes wrote: For example, so far, all the casino owners in Las Vegas are corrupt gangster types.

ummm i think this may be a fair generalization LOL


I think it's more like big corporations now. Aren't the mafia owners largely gone from Vegas now?
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Re: Gender in Twin Peaks: The Return

Postby Hester Prynne » Wed Jul 19, 2017 7:31 pm

Troubbble wrote:
Troubbble wrote:
Hester Prynne wrote:Of the new female characters we've seen, five have already been killed off (Tracy, Daria, Phyllis, Lorraine, Miriam - did I leave anyone out?). It feels like their only purpose in the storyline is to get killed off and advance the narrative (Mr. Reindeer had a great post on the other thread that went into this some.). I think that is why I was so exasperated with Candie's character the other night - I was hoping for more because I know Lynch and Frost can deliver more, but to me it fell short.


So far, the story has demanded that several characters die. But would it have been preferable to have those brutalized characters be males, if it meant five fewer roles for women in the series?

Just spitballing here. Wondering what people think...


Still thinking about this, and want to make a final point... While some of these murdered female characters were clearly lacking in depth, I think we're also painting with too broad a brush.

Take Miriam as an example. She was only meant to feature in 3-4 scenes and was ultimately fated to be killed by Richard, but even in that limited screen time she was clearly shown to be a brave and virtuous person, determined to stand up to Richard as even his family seems too frightened to do. I expect her bravery to be rewarded through Lucy—another courageous female, despite any quirks! She took awful close notice of Deputy Douchebag's shenanigans with the mail, and I see no point in filming that scene if it won't pay off satisfyingly later on.


I think my reaction ties into the ideas of balance that Cipher discusses in a later post - it 's not necessarily a matter of swapping men getting killed instead of women, just so there can be more female characters in the storyline.

As you can probably tell from my post, I really loved the female characters and their storylines from the original run :D. For other fans, they may not be that attached to this aspect of the original series - not that they didn't like the characters or appreciate those parts of the story, but it won't necessarily affect their appreciation of the new season one way or the other.

Yes, I do wish there were more female characters like Constance and Liuetenat Knox in the series, and I concede that the way Season 3 is being told is dramatically different from the original run, and I like that, but I do think it limits how much individual characters, men and women, get focused on in the show. But I also know that Lynch and Frost can create some amazing female characters that can be more complex than just showing up for a couple of scenes and participating on the sidelines or getting abruptly killed off in succession. This is the only thing that's missing for me at this point, and I love season 3, so that's why it's been driving me bonkers!

I am with you on Lucy - her keeping tabs on Chad when he was "getting the mail" reminded me of when she typed Bobby and Mike's conversation from Season 1. I would love it if she is the one who puts Richard's downfall into motion by finding that letter. And I liked Miriam - just wish we could have seen more of her :wink:

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