Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

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Cappy
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Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Cappy » Thu Sep 07, 2017 6:58 am

Are people having difficulty reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return? I've read a lot of reactions that suggest Cooper undid the ending of FWWM (and Laura's transcendence/redemption/self-actualization moment) by going back in time and trying to save her, relegating Laura to a kind of eternal return where she is forced to always forget and then violently recall the horrors of her family abuse. The entropy of pain and repression that Laura is ping-ponged between never places her in a situation of highest crisis like in the train car, and even though she still lives, she never overcomes her trauma and finds peace.

I still think that Laura can have her FWWM ending; perhaps that moment is point C, and The Return's ending is point B, if we were to assume Twin Peaks to have a linear nature.

I also think that potentially Laura herself is the one who pulled herself away from Agent Cooper at the end of ep. 17. She was somehow capable of conjuring the strength to refuse his escape door and confront her circumstances, making her even more courageous than I previously thought. What follows in ep. 18 is Cooper's struggle to understand Laura. He doesn't understand her domestic hell, and he doesn't understand why she refused to escape her own death. Cooper can't comprehend why parents would do this to a child, nor why the daughter would need to confront this head on in order to overcome and grow as a person. He takes Carrie Page to the Palmer house specifically to unlock this mystery, but maybe he gets more than he is equipped to comprehend. It's fitting that the last shot of the series is Cooper listening to Laura's whisper. 25 years later and he still struggles to hear what she is saying.

I'm still wrestling with this aspect of the show. What are other people's thoughts about how the two endings fit together, or don't fit?
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Novalis » Thu Sep 07, 2017 7:25 am

I don't think they fit together, and intentionally so.

My own personal (but provisional) reading is that there is no one ending. I am very reluctant to use the word 'timeline' in relation to Twin Peaks, as if feels like a sci-fi import, but it's hard to put into words otherwise: what I see being shown to me is the divergence of two (possibly more) timelines.

These timelines (goddammit I hate that word in this context) are not merely divergent 'possible worlds', but divergent actual worlds, with real populations living real lives and going about their business.

My rationale for this is that Twin Peaks has always been about duality (or multiplicity), from the scriptwriting to the naming to the doubling-down of everything in it on some level or other. And, perhaps entirely out of left-field but none the less, a 'dale' is a valley, a space that by definition requires at least two mountains to exist. Cooper is like a fracture between worlds.
Last edited by Novalis on Thu Sep 07, 2017 8:25 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Kilmoore » Thu Sep 07, 2017 8:17 am

I'm not ruling out the chance that the reason Laura got the ending of FWWM is because Cooper saved her in the past and with her help, defeated Judy. As a result, Laura is free and is met by the angels.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby laughingpinecone » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:57 am

I need to rewatch the pt14 sequence to see if there's anything we can infer from the specific order of images, but I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.

So yes, I think that ending is still on her horizon...
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Saturn's child » Thu Sep 07, 2017 10:06 am

laughingpinecone wrote:I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.


Excellent point LPC.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:09 am

laughingpinecone wrote:I need to rewatch the pt14 sequence to see if there's anything we can infer from the specific order of images, but I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.

So yes, I think that ending is still on her horizon...


Worth noting that Laura is in her 40s appearance-wise when whisked out of the Lodge in Part 2, but still 18 appearance-wise in the last scene of FWWM. The logistics of Laura aging in the Lodge are one of those things we can either rationalize or ignore, but I guess it doesn't particularly matter since time is so fluid in the Lodges.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby laughingpinecone » Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:18 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:
laughingpinecone wrote:I need to rewatch the pt14 sequence to see if there's anything we can infer from the specific order of images, but I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.

So yes, I think that ending is still on her horizon...


Worth noting that Laura is in her 40s appearance-wise when whisked out of the Lodge in Part 2, but still 18 appearance-wise in the last scene of FWWM. The logistics of Laura aging in the Lodge are one of those things we can either rationalize or ignore, but I guess it doesn't particularly matter since time is so fluid in the Lodges.

True that, but what could they do when filming a non-linear continuation in 2015? De-age her, Coop and Gerard digitally in some Lodge scenes to cement this feeling of atemporality?
I would have liked to see the FWWM ending redone with present-day Kmac and Lee, much like they redid the dream scene. But maybe then it would've been too obvious?
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby firefly2193 » Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:02 pm

My interpretation of ending is that Coop, perhaps across many timelines (or worlds or whichever) is trying to save Laura. He thinks saving her means preventing her death, for he can't come to terms with the idea that her life was what she needed saving from, not her death. Thus, every time he tries, he fails. When he does so, events are restored to their natural order and Laura lives the life she lived in FWWM and gets the ending she deserves. Essentially, Cooper is trying to rob her of that ending but crucially he is failing to do so.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Cappy » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:35 pm

firefly2193 wrote:My interpretation of ending is that Coop, perhaps across many timelines (or worlds or whichever) is trying to save Laura. He thinks saving her means preventing her death, for he can't come to terms with the idea that her life was what she needed saving from, not her death. Thus, every time he tries, he fails. When he does so, events are restored to their natural order and Laura lives the life she lived in FWWM and gets the ending she deserves. Essentially, Cooper is trying to rob her of that ending but crucially he is failing to do so.


That's a really interesting way to frame Cooper's mission to "save" Laura. It's also consistent with his bad advice about the ring in FWWM.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Cappy » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:39 pm

laughingpinecone wrote:I need to rewatch the pt14 sequence to see if there's anything we can infer from the specific order of images, but I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.

So yes, I think that ending is still on her horizon...


That's a good point. I had assumed that Laura and her angels were a past (or even current) thing, given that other past events were shown to Andy (BOB's creation, crying girl running through school yard).
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Cappy » Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:52 pm

Novalis wrote:I don't think they fit together, and intentionally so.

My own personal (but provisional) reading is that there is no one ending. I am very reluctant to use the word 'timeline' in relation to Twin Peaks, as if feels like a sci-fi import, but it's hard to put into words otherwise: what I see being shown to me is the divergence of two (possibly more) timelines.

These timelines (goddammit I hate that word in this context) are not merely divergent 'possible worlds', but divergent actual worlds, with real populations living real lives and going about their business.

My rationale for this is that Twin Peaks has always been about duality (or multiplicity), from the scriptwriting to the naming to the doubling-down of everything in it on some level or other. And, perhaps entirely out of left-field but none the less, a 'dale' is a valley, a space that by definition requires at least two mountains to exist. Cooper is like a fracture between worlds.


Yeah, I dislike the way "timeline" sounds too, but I think it might work in this instance. I think in Lynch works 'possible' and 'actual' can have a real flimsy distinction, as dreams and the subconscious pour seamlessly into reality (and vice versa). I also think that something happens after Evil Coop and BOB are destroyed, right after Coop notices Naido we see his face superimposed over the screen for several minutes. I think this is a very literal projection of Cooper's consciousness onto his objective surroundings, signifying that events depicted are a mix of reality and his own desires/fears. For example, the neat and tidy denouement that follows, his big kiss moment with Diane, etc. Even the way Laura's corpse is deleted and Pete is allowed to fish in peace. I don't think everything that happens here is Cooper's psyche acting out visually, but I do recall Maj. Briggs in the original series saying that his one fear was the possibility that love is not enough. Was Laura getting yanked from Cooper's reach just an eruption of his own shaky faith in the power of love, possibly based on his own past pains? However we describe it, I do think that Dale himself might be the fracture between worlds, dreams, timelines, or whatever we call it.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Cappy » Thu Sep 07, 2017 3:16 pm

Getting back to the different endings though, i feel like FWWM was the ending that Laura's character required, but maybe The Return is the ending Cooper's character requires. He needs to get to the bottom of this case, and now that the BOB explanation has been defeated, he can finally look at the horror of Laura's life with a degree of objectivity and finally understand what this is all about. Maybe now he's finally able to see and to listen to what Laura is saying.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby N. Needleman » Fri Sep 08, 2017 1:36 am

I think The Return is definitely post-FWWM, and it's Cooper's fault Laura is stuck there with him. I think the new series is excellent and 18 is particularly haunting and special, but a few other supporting characters getting more closure aside, the idea that Laura is stuck in that nightmare is one thing I really want resolved someday. I don't want her stuck like that. If it's down to her to strike at Judy - and I think it is - I think it has to be on her terms and not Dale Cooper's. And I hope to see that. Maybe her scream is the beginning of that though, I don't know.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby Castledoque » Fri Sep 08, 2017 2:27 am

N. Needleman wrote:I think The Return is definitely post-FWWM, and it's Cooper's fault Laura is stuck there with him. I think the new series is excellent and 18 is particularly haunting and special, but a few other supporting characters getting more closure aside, the idea that Laura is stuck in that nightmare is one thing I really want resolved someday. I don't want her stuck like that. I

This is one of the two main reasons I am not happy with the new series and also why the final two episodes ruined the experience for me. The other one is the abandoned multiple storylines.
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Re: Reconciling the ending of FWWM with the ending of The Return

Postby laughingpinecone » Fri Sep 08, 2017 2:45 am

Cappy wrote:
laughingpinecone wrote:I need to rewatch the pt14 sequence to see if there's anything we can infer from the specific order of images, but I think it's very important that Laura's angels are in TPTR as part of Andy's vision.

So yes, I think that ending is still on her horizon...


That's a good point. I had assumed that Laura and her angels were a past (or even current) thing, given that other past events were shown to Andy (BOB's creation, crying girl running through school yard).

Good point.
It still feels to me like that's her ending, though, and its presence there means it wasn't obliterated...? Oh well, here's hoping, anyway. I do think that final shot is the beginning of their odyssey toward Coop's unfuckening, and giving her her angels back... :)
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