FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

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Which option best describes your overall reaction to The Return as a complete work?

Poll ended at Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:09 pm

Like or Love
228
65%
Heavily Mixed, Leaning Towards Like
41
12%
Heavily Mixed, Leaning Towards Dislike
44
12%
Dislike or Hate
40
11%
 
Total votes: 353
Cipher
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Cipher » Mon Sep 04, 2017 12:16 am

counterpaul wrote:I would posit a third option: I think TP's three major iterations (S1-S2, FWWM, and TPTR) are complimentary works. S1-S2 is the town's story, FWWM is Laura's story, and TPTR is Coop's story.

The ending of FWWM and the ending of TPTR obviously parallel and complicate one another, but they both make perfect, profound sense in their respective contexts.

Laura transcends but Coop cannot. Coop remains stuck, convinced that he can "solve" the past--illuminate its mysteries and repair its traumas. The final line, "what year is it," is so profound because Coop has spent most of his life sleepwalking through his present, missing the life he's been given, in favor of attempting to construct a past that cannot be.

TPTR, at its root, is about irreparable trauma. It's about Diane's "Dear Richard" letter; it's a about Carrie trying to keep a clean house and ending up with a corpse with a bullet in its head and a bunch of cleaning products strewn about; it's about how Coop feels he has to leave his family the second he finds himself consciously present and about how he can only return to them in the form of a stand-in; it's about the Palmer house: forever haunted.

Sure, but then my gut reaction is that as an ending for Cooper, this second comeuppance adds little to his first, and this time its tragic outcome subsumes Laura's, who surely doesn't deserve it?

That's not a condemnation, but it's something I can't yet parse.
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counterpaul
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby counterpaul » Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:29 am

Cipher wrote:
counterpaul wrote:Laura transcends but Coop cannot. Coop remains stuck, convinced that he can "solve" the past--illuminate its mysteries and repair its traumas. The final line, "what year is it," is so profound because Coop has spent most of his life sleepwalking through his present, missing the life he's been given, in favor of attempting to construct a past that cannot be.

Sure, but then my gut reaction is that as an ending for Cooper, this second comeuppance adds little to his first, and this time its tragic outcome subsumes Laura's, who surely doesn't deserve it?

That's not a condemnation, but it's something I can't yet parse.


Well, first, I wouldn't call this ending a comeuppance at all. I find it deeply compassionate. Coop's face as he decides there's nothing more to ask Alice Tremond is so...Cooper. He's endlessly curious and endlessly certain that his curiosity can be satisfied if he could just ask the right question or find the right clue. He's not at all malicious here, he's just maybe barking up the wrong tree.

Second, I don't think Laura is subsumed at all. The ending of FWWM stands 100%. This is Coop's Laura, here--the past he wants to repair, the trauma he wants to heal. Lynch told Laura's story, in which she heroically transcended her own trauma, but now she lingers as a powerful ghost in Cooper's story. This isn't a contradiction to me at all.

As far as Coop's progress since the end of Season 2, well, I would argue that while Coop's situation remains profoundly unresolved, I do think the ending of TPTR is a whole different animal than the ending of Season 2. TPTR is all about time. The passage of time, and Coop's (and, by extension, the show's) relationship to its passage is no trivial thing. TPTR essentially tells the story of several lives that Coop might have lived had he not basically sat them all out, and all of those lives weigh on him.

In a way, he simultaneously lived all those lives and none of them. When he "wakes up," he knows the whole story. He remembers everything. He was Cooper, Dougie, and his Doppelganger all at once--they're all his life. And they changed him, despite the fact that he lived them at a remove.

The Cooper we're left with at the end of The Return is a man just realizing that his life has passed him by. He wants it back--he wants to fix the past he botched--but that isn't possible. I'd like to think that Laura's scream might just be him at least starting to realize that fact, but then we get that image of him listening to her whisper, still trying to piece it all together.

Interestingly, you know it just occurred to me that the ending of The Return, way more than the ending of Season 2, stays remarkably true to the original, 25 years later "closed ending" of the pilot! Here's Coop, forever trying to hear what Laura is telling him so that he can piece the mystery together. Fascinating!

I keep thinking of Carrie/Laura's line: "In those days, I was too young to know better." I don't know if Coop quite knows better yet, but I do feel like that line speaks to the difference between the end of Season 2 and the end of The Return, and The Return's entire raison d'etre in general.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby dronerstone » Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:30 am

"Psychotic FBI agent tries to solve teenage girl murder case, falls into 25 years of coma, wakes up, kidnaps Odessa woman, takes her to random Washington area house and leaves her screaming for help in the street at night."
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby laughingpinecone » Mon Sep 04, 2017 1:32 am

Cipher wrote:
counterpaul wrote:I would posit a third option: I think TP's three major iterations (S1-S2, FWWM, and TPTR) are complimentary works. S1-S2 is the town's story, FWWM is Laura's story, and TPTR is Coop's story.

The ending of FWWM and the ending of TPTR obviously parallel and complicate one another, but they both make perfect, profound sense in their respective contexts.

Laura transcends but Coop cannot. Coop remains stuck, convinced that he can "solve" the past--illuminate its mysteries and repair its traumas. The final line, "what year is it," is so profound because Coop has spent most of his life sleepwalking through his present, missing the life he's been given, in favor of attempting to construct a past that cannot be.

TPTR, at its root, is about irreparable trauma. It's about Diane's "Dear Richard" letter; it's a about Carrie trying to keep a clean house and ending up with a corpse with a bullet in its head and a bunch of cleaning products strewn about; it's about how Coop feels he has to leave his family the second he finds himself consciously present and about how he can only return to them in the form of a stand-in; it's about the Palmer house: forever haunted.

Sure, but then my gut reaction is that as an ending for Cooper, this second comeuppance adds little to his first, and this time its tragic outcome subsumes Laura's, who surely doesn't deserve it?

That's not a condemnation, but it's something I can't yet parse.

We don't get to see what happens next, but her scream seemingly shatters that reality. I think her good ending stands and she - having gone through this process and come out victorious - can make him break his cycle too, at some point, in some iteration.
I think it's an open ending that asks a lot of engagement from the viewer, of finding our meaning and from that meaning project our trajectory. But it's a lot more dynamic than the old ending.
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Cipher
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Cipher » Mon Sep 04, 2017 2:53 am

counterpaul wrote:Laura transcends but Coop cannot. Coop remains stuck, convinced that he can "solve" the past--illuminate its mysteries and repair its traumas. The final line, "what year is it," is so profound because Coop has spent most of his life sleepwalking through his present, missing the life he's been given, in favor of attempting to construct a past that cannot be.

Second, I don't think Laura is subsumed at all. The ending of FWWM stands 100%. This is Coop's Laura, here--the past he wants to repair, the trauma he wants to heal. Lynch told Laura's story, in which she heroically transcended her own trauma, but now she lingers as a powerful ghost in Cooper's story. This isn't a contradiction to me at all.

This is a reading I can begin to make piece with, though it's still somewhat difficult to reconcile a final note that strips Laura (even a Laura) of agency or focus after what felt like a lovely dovetailing of her arc's and Cooper's in the film. It's a fitting ending for Cooper, but ... Laura as the one who must now save Cooper? Maybe, but we don't have a genuine implication, as the footage cuts on a moment of singular horror.

I have to say, though, it is growing on me. And your lines about aging and "knowing better" and wanting more of the past rings true, though that still all works better for me at the moment taking The Return as stand-alone rather than as the finale to Peaks.

Now that it's all done, how do we summarize the greater meta-work of Twin Peaks?

"A young girl's personal duplicity and murder expands into a surreal, never-ending mystery about the cosmic forces of love and fear"?

In a way, he simultaneously lived all those lives and none of them. When he "wakes up," he knows the whole story. He remembers everything. He was Cooper, Dougie, and his Doppelganger all at once--they're all his life. And they changed him, despite the fact that he lived them at a remove.

Yes; this I very much agree with.

EDIT -- Liking it more the more I think about it.
Last edited by Cipher on Mon Sep 04, 2017 4:27 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Novalis » Mon Sep 04, 2017 4:18 am

Lynch has outdone himself. Although he would probably hate the analogy for being too textual, The Return, layered upon FWWM and the original run, make something like a filmic palimpsest. Different stories/accounts inhabiting the same space. I loved it all.
As a matter of fact, 'Chalfont' was the name of the people that rented this space before. Two Chalfonts. Weird, huh?
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby N. Needleman » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:33 am

I'd love to believe the Laura from the ending of FWWM and the Laura/Carrie of 17-18 are different, but I don't. I think Cooper 'saved' Laura in '89 and took her out of one timeline with him, ripping her out of the Lodge (in part 2). I think his hero's pride denied her her salvation, and now they're both lost. Hopefully not forever.

(I do think the original timeline of Twin Peaks and the town, etc. is still out there reasonably untouched, but Coop - and Diane - have stepped out of it to parts unknown again.)
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby mtwentz » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:38 am

N. Needleman wrote:I'd love to believe the Laura from the ending of FWWM and the Laura/Carrie of 17-18 are different, but I don't. I think Cooper 'saved' Laura in '89 and took her out of one timeline with him, ripping her out of the Lodge (in part 2). I think his hero's pride denied her her salvation, and now they're both lost. Hopefully not forever.

(I do think the original timeline of Twin Peaks and the town, etc. is still out there reasonably untouched, but Coop - and Diane - have stepped out of it to parts unknown again.)


That's an interesting interpretation with good evidence to support it. However, there is some evidence supporting the dream hypothesis too. Or maybe a mixture of both.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Cipher » Mon Sep 04, 2017 5:57 am

N. Needleman wrote:I'd love to believe the Laura from the ending of FWWM and the Laura/Carrie of 17-18 are different, but I don't. I think Cooper 'saved' Laura in '89 and took her out of one timeline with him, ripping her out of the Lodge (in part 2). I think his hero's pride denied her her salvation, and now they're both lost. Hopefully not forever.

(I do think the original timeline of Twin Peaks and the town, etc. is still out there reasonably untouched, but Coop - and Diane - have stepped out of it to parts unknown again.)

Yeah, this is still where I stand. It's hard to read the Fire Walk With Me ending, which features a younger Cooper and Laura, as taking place at any time after the third season, even with the Lodge's odd sense of time. In addition, Laura appears to have transcended before Cooper's (at that point future for him, past for her) actions whisk her out.

But even with that reading, I'm beginning to like it more and more. Perhaps her second shot at life, imperfect as it may be, and opportunity to save herself once more where Cooper failed catastrophically, isn't the worst. It doesn't deny the power of her arc in Fire Walk With Me, certainly, even if it tells us the story isn't over. Who will this combination of Carrie and Laura be, a Laura who has lived at least one life to full age, trapped for the time being with ineffectual Coop?

We may never know, but that's a great mystery.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby N. Needleman » Mon Sep 04, 2017 6:15 am

I like the finale a lot. That doesn't mean it's not brutal. But so is MD, which it is heavily redolent of IMO.

I think if the show continues Cooper can only be so much the protagonist. He is clearly incapable at this time of doing the right thing. I think Laura is still the one.
AnotherBlueRoseCase wrote:The Return is clearly guaranteed a future audience among stoners and other drug users.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby mtwentz » Mon Sep 04, 2017 7:28 am

I am still in the 'like or love' category, with heavily mixed emotions about Part 18.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby referendum » Mon Sep 04, 2017 8:32 am

COUNTERPAUL : Second, I don't think Laura is subsumed at all. The ending of FWWM stands 100%. This is Coop's Laura, here--the past he wants to repair, the trauma he wants to heal. Lynch told Laura's story, in which she heroically transcended her own trauma, but now she lingers as a powerful ghost in Cooper's story. This isn't a contradiction to me at all.


there are a couple of things to do with this which i have not really thought through in relation to this last hour and a half, but i kept noticing over and over again in this series: one is the idea of wish-fulfilment, introduced very early on with Mr Jackpots but something that the series made a point of coming back to again and again, and the other is, flicking between an objective viewpoint, and various different subjective viewpoints, without signalling the change - events are viewed through different character's eyes, but it is not always immediately obvious whose eyes we are looking through, or whose perception of events we are being shown, or whether we are supposed to take that character's viewpoint as a reliable or trustworthy witness, or as real or imaginary. You can't have a much plainer or more explicit demonstration of this than playing out ten minutes of the final showdown with Cooper's face ( viewpoint) superimposed over the action.

Maybe Coops ending with Diane and with Laura - is all a kind of, '' if only it had all turned out like this''...and Diane/Linda disappearing, and the final minute, the what year is this? and the scream, an admission that...it didn't... Cooper's momentarily bewildered because he realises: you can't go back, and as that starts to sink in, the series ends on a sudden shift in viewpoint from Coop's POV to Laura's...

....So yeah I agree with you that this is not a rewrite or a retcon or a contradiction. It still comes back to this same thing that the original TP ( and lynch) often comes back to, how do people deal with mental pain? And - another Lynch favourite - How can different people believe in each other ( and how can you have a reliable narrative) when everyone sees/ experiences things differently and has their own version of the same story they tell to themselves in different ways? There isn't ' an explanation' - there are explanations. etc....
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Panapaok » Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:37 am

Like/Love. It's a flawed piece of art, sometimes riveting and sometimes frustrating. I need a lot of time and many rewatches through the following years in order to process and digest it.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby The Gazebo » Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:45 am

Still in the mixed, leaning towards dislike.

I haven't rewatched 17 and 18 yet, but at first glance these were two of the finest this season, even though I'm not too big a fan of the expanded mythology. And paradoxically, they pretty much obliterated - or at least made somewhat redundant - most of what had preceeded them. I've been looking forward to The Return's completion, expecting some more meat to the bones of various storylines (not necessarily resolutions), which might improve my overall experience. But the hints we got with the easy disposal of various villains turned out to be just a prelude to the complete abandonment of everybody, except Cooper/Laura/Diane. I must admit I have almost zero motivation to watch this thing again.
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Re: FINAL POLL!!!!!!! Your Reaction to The Return as a Complete Work

Postby Low Entropy » Mon Sep 04, 2017 10:50 am

I totally loved it.

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