Let's talk about MIKE

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LostInTheMovies
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby LostInTheMovies » Tue Mar 10, 2015 4:51 pm

StealThisCorn wrote:It's funny the more I read of some of your analysis of these hard to answer questions, the more they start making sense. At first, I'm like what? The Arm IS fully Mike? Bob DOESN'T eat garmonbozia? The Arm is Mike's RIGHT arm? But after reading your reasoning several times I slowly start to see either why there are indications that might be truth or at least good reasons why it would make for a stronger, more cohesive narrative. For example, like you said, I can see how in the film it would have made more sense if Mike and Bob were Jim and Bob but the pair were already part of the mythology by that point and the ring hadn't even been conceived. So thanks for writing that out. I may balk the first and maybe second time, but coming back I'm like hmm this is starting to make some sense to me.


Of course 2016 may throw cold water on all of my ideas haha. Especially since Lynch/Frost will be a slightly different spin than Lynch alone would be. Frost seemed to force Lynch's hand on revealing/explaining certain things in the original series, sometimes helpfully, sometimes prematurely, and sometimes unnecessarily. I wonder at this point, after all the years, and in the format they're persuing, that dynamic will unfold.

All I hope is it follows a certain emotional/psychological/subconscious dream-logic. The ep. 16 explanations (the Little Man danced because Leland danced, his hair turned white etc etc, and especially the dumb gum reference) don't do that for me. And the season 1 stuff I'm ok with because it's a bit more subtle (I didn't catch the significance of Maddy saying "I didn't know here that well, but I feel like I did" until several viewings and I kind of LIKE the red curtains in Jacques' cabin although apparently Lynch did not) - but even that feels a tinge too on-the-nose.

I'm just a broken record at this point, but maybe the part of 2016 that fascinates me most is how (or if) Lynch and Frost will collaborate on the mythology because as far as I can gather they've never really done that up to this point. It's more like Lynch comes up with some crazy images, Frost fits it into a framework, Frost focuses on a bigger framework, Lynch links this to this previous crazy images and comes up with more and puts his own more ambiguous spin on said framework... More of a relay race than a mutual plan.

I also look forward to eventually reading the scripts for 2016 (AFTER the series has aired of course! Like I could get my hands on them beforehand anyway lol) and comparing them to what Lynch directed. I imagine as always there will be some significant changes (even in ep. 2, which he co-wrote, Lynch added entire scenes on set).

Oh, and even I have to doubt my own "right arm = Little Mike" theory haha. It feels like one twist too many, and kind of messes up that final scene where we see the Little Man literally link up with Mike's left stub. But I do suspect/hope that Mike-on-the-show is wrong about the arm being evil.
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StealThisCorn
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby StealThisCorn » Thu Mar 12, 2015 4:14 am

I'm having some thoughts, which I will try to make sense of here.

Thinking more about what we now know as the Twin Peaks mythology, it occurs to me that I really do have to appreciate Frost's work on that and, to a lesser extent, Peyton and Engels (except for the overly literal ideas which I think we're a mistake--such as making the entrance to Red Room a physical portal in Ghostwood Forest that opens when Jupiter and Saturn align or the idea of the Planet of Creamed Corn).

I find Lynch's imagery in this regard completely unique and endlessly fascinating, almost mesmerizing to watch. We all know he created Mike and Bob, the "Fire walk with me" chant, the Red Room with the dancing dwarf and Laura Palmer 25 years later, Sarah Palmer as visionary, the Giant, creamed corn and the thing with spirits in wood.

But, without Frost and others, most of these would remain inexplicable, bizarre images without context or significance. Beautiful, creepy, fascinating. The imagery is brilliant and so unique, but it seems like Frost took that imagery and wove it into the context of something that is familiar enough either because of culture, mythology or even genre sensibility, that my mind can conceptualize it and appreciate it even more as actually being a unique mythology and not just Lynchian imagery such as in Wild At Heart or Mulholland Drive.

That said, Frost and especially Peyton and Engels almost stretched that to the breaking point by trying to veer into and tie-in space UFOs, Project Bluebook, dugpas, whatever was up with Major Briggs appearing in 1940s pilot gear, abduction phenomena, ancient petroglyphs etc. Though certain things, like inhabiting spirits (which seems like it was more of Frost's way of solving the problem but there is no hard info on this specifically that I can find), the owl motif, Windom's speech about how fear is the bread and butter of the creatures that hover on the edge of our nightmares (which could be straight out of John Keel's theories on phenomena like the Mothman), the linking of UFO phenomena to the woods around Twin Peaks and "the earth below" (a more magical or faerie interpretation than an X-Files sci-fi one, in the vein of Jacques Vallee's studies showing the many links between modern UFO lore with much older folklore) and creating a clear good versus evil (or at least lawful evil versus chaotic evil) do actually add to the mythology in my opinion. Again, by referencing things that are culturally tangible and familiar enough to me to where I can almost imagine a cohesive mythological framework out of all the elements.

Now, of course, Lynch takes this again and then improves on it even more such as taking the vague ideas of the Black/White Lodge and folding that back in to the Red Room 25 years later, time being non-linear, doppelgangers, the creamed corn as pain and suffering (at least from Leland to feed Mike), the Ring. Though, in the film, I know Engels helped form the idea of them being from "another world" and wanting to return home and, I suspect, the more science-fiction type elements such as David Bowie's teleportation, Cooper on the monitor and who knows what else.

I hope I am making some sense here.
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby LostInTheMovies » Thu Mar 12, 2015 4:26 am

StealThisCorn wrote:I'm having some thoughts, which I will try to make sense of here. ...


Yeah, I agree with all of this here. I feel like Frost (and in a way Peyton, who supposedly came up with the idea - maybe simultaneously with Frost - of Coop seeing Bob in the mirror) pushed Lynch's images into a sort of narrative momentum. But that ultimately Lynch is the best one to return to it, take the imagery + the narrative momentum and give it a real thematic heft. For example, when whoever was responsible for it tries to literalize the draem clues in ep. 16 it's way too on-the-nose. So it feels like Lynchinan imagery -> Frost structure/narrative/theme -> Lynch emotional/psychological weight (and an offbeat sense of narrative/thematic fulfillment) is the best possible flow of the material.

Engels for me is a real wild card. I can't get a firm sense of what/how he contributed to FWWM. It feels like he played a huge role in Deer Meadow; so much of the sensibility there is that absurdist, arch sense of humor that he & Lynch shared. Obviously they really fed off each other in coming up with bizarre supernatural imagery. But what role did he play in the Laura portion of the story? I commented once that to hear Engels talk about writing FWWM, you'd think they were writing Spaceballs. Yet on the show his episodes tend to have really good scenes with the teenagers experiencing the fallout from Laura's tragedy and he has some great quotes about the show benefitting from that free-floating sense of guilt and the community having the Laura mystery as a focal point. Yet I've almost never heard him discuss the bulk of FWWM when he talks about writing it. Weird.

Andy Burns' new book Wrapped in Plastic does have an interesting quote about Engels saying he was surprised by the incest/violence aspect of the story, and was mostly focused on the idea of the mechanics of the Leland/Bob possession thing, which is interestingly contrasted with Jennifer Lynch's take on Bob - she apparently was quite disappointed that it ended being such a straight-up demonic thing on the show, which feels like too much of a concession to TV standards, and prefers to see Bob as a mutual projection of Laura/Leland for psychic self-protection.

That's kind of neither here nor there given your original point, but I'm nothing if not tangential.
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby StealThisCorn » Thu Mar 12, 2015 4:32 am

And, though it's been said before, these thoughts just make me so intrigued, excited and curious about what in the world a much stronger, focused, lasting collaboration between Frost and Lynch will do with the established mythology in the new 2016 series. How it will be utilized, how it will be expanded, what new idea or explanations might be given. I hope Lynch is gonna create some more incredible imagery, atmosphere and emotional depth and Frost will help weave it into one hell of an epic story.
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby StealThisCorn » Thu Mar 12, 2015 4:45 am

Hmm had more thoughts after I already posted. Oh well, I'll just increase that post count :D

It's like, can you imagine if the Mulholland Drive pilot got picked up for a television series? Though, presumably, Lynch would have learned his lessons from his heartbreak over Twin Peaks, if other writers started contributing to the show and even other directors or just other collaborators (because Lynch on TV *needs* collaboration), I bet you that the Creature Behind the Diner, the Cowboy, the Grandparents, the Blue Box and the Blue Key, the Woman with Blue Hair etc. might have all been interpreted by the other writers as some kind of strange mythology and tried to work them into the story of the show in the same way that Frost and the other writers took Lynch's imagery of Mike, Bob, the Red Room, the dancing dwarf, etc. from the end of the European pilot and made it into a show mythology that deepened the mystery and provided a cosmic scope to the human drama playing out.

So I guess my point is that, because of Frost and, to a lesser extent, Peyton, Engels and maybe other writers/collaborators, when my mind goes to touch if you will, or play with, imagine etc. the mythology of Twin Peaks world, there is something solid there for me to grasp, because of culture, myth and genre allusions rather than just the smoke of Lynch's strange and beautiful, but undefined, imagery. And that, is probably why, despite its many mistakes and flaws, it remains my favorite out of all things Lynch has worked on.
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby Fly the Coop » Wed Mar 02, 2016 11:45 am

Great thread, very interesting, i'm still digesting a lot of stuff on here. I have many ideas of my own and after my own long inner thoughts post, found that, others who have the same opinion however seem more clued up than me, makes it difficult to separate out what's new and what isn't. It's still the honeymoon period of thoughtful procrastination for me!

I certainly agree with the developing MIKE theory and think it works well. However, One thing i'd like to mention which I don't recall seeing here yet as something for evidence that MIKE is the MFAP, down to the voice in the amazing scene you mentioned when Mike flips from "one mike to another" when deprived of his drugs. That voice I can only remember definitely being used one other time which was when Sarah Palmer is talking to Maj. Briggs about Agent Cooper.

Now what if this was MIKE talking to Briggs though Sarah from the lodge? Just as it was MIKE speaking through Phillip whilst he was again in the lodge. Same problem of BOB being in possession of an extremely useful vessel, he needs him back at the lodge and needs to "break this new Cooper thread". So he looks for help, in trying to get Agent Cooper saved from the lodge somehow.

It must have been in here somewhere, but it was mentioned that perhaps the reason MIKE cut off his arm was to create an advantage for himself in the pursuit and attempted control of BOB. This "system" of MIKE having himself in the lodge as TMFAP who is the garmonbozia eating side of him, the dark spirit side. Then his "other part" is able to leave the lodge in a vessel, namely Phillip at the moment.

How this "split" by cutting off his arm (physical or metaphorical) happened, I do not know. The fact Phillip was wearing the ring whilst shouting at Laura and Leland from the van in FWWM could suggest that he was "claimed" by MIKE as a vessel, which is how the ring gets into circulation if you will. The ring starts in possession of his new vessel, who then is able to distribute to where it needs to be in the "real-world", perhaps Mrs Tremond and her Grandson then take over once it's delivered. Going off Mrs Tremond and her Grandson being in the real-world as they're made of "materials and combinations of atoms", and we know that they are involved with the ring so that means they cannot go and collect it themselves, it must be delivered from the lodge by the Vessel first.

So the ring symbolises his ownership of his claiming a vessel (same as how BOB exists) and claiming their garmonbozia through fear and suffering. It fits in with the whole "with this ring, I thee wed" too, the idea that in marriage all is shared and burdened together, what's mine is yours kind of thing. This then allows MIKE a luxury that BOB does not have, inhabiting both the lodge and the "real-world" simultaneously for overall control. He is then also able to make use of help from the Giant (assuming he's some kind of medium free to travel between the two lodges and the "real-world") in the task of controlling BOB through the gifted ones who are able to be made use of; Log Lady, Cooper, Briggs.

I also just had a thought that a reason for MIKE wanting to do this is because as said by MIKE when BOB returns and separates from Leland: "Bob, you're not going home without me. I want all my garmonbozia." This could indicate that part of how BOB has been stealing/not sharing garmonbozia is by going home without him (wherever and whatever that means). Presumably though, this path home is through the waiting room. Hence MIKE as TMFAP remaining there on guard, to either stop BOB as he comes through, or, is also in a position to work with The Giant for help, possibly helping assist the Giant with advice/clues to give. Who we know is able to go there and seems to have some kind of working relationship with TMFAP based on Coopers experience in the waiting room. Then his "other part" is able to leave the lodge in a vessel, namely Phillip at the moment, to either collect garmonbozia himself, or, to keep an eye or intervene if needed on BOB's activities.

I just re-watched the diner scene at the end to see if Sarah Palmer had the ring on to back up this nebulous idea of MIKE giving a ring through his vessel from the lodge since Phillip wore it in FWWM I thought maybe the ring starts in the hand of his new vessel who then distributes it where it needs to go from there, but sadly, she is not. She's very hands twitchy at the start and it's hidden... but then when she sits down you get a look, boo! There's also moments where Sarah Palmer has displayed some visions and so in touch with the spirit world perhaps, and that's why she was the one delivering the message...?

However, there was interesting dialogue between Bobby and Shelly when Bobby asked Shelly to marry him and she reaffirms the importance of having claimed ownership via a ring by saying "Bobby, Leo... I'm still wearing his ring". Seems like rather purposeful words to use to say, I'm still married. They then finish their conversation by playfully making what seem like monkey sounds at each other as they ruffle each other's hair... I dunno, nothing of real story line worth, but more fucking with my mind inclusions and links... Dam Lynch!

Sorry i'm not quite as concise and clued up as you guys are on these things just yet... getting there!
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Saturn's child
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby Saturn's child » Fri Mar 04, 2016 5:00 pm

Forgive me if it's been mentioned, but I've always thought:

Formica --> 'Formikea' --> 'For Mike'

The garmonbozia at the formica table is ostensibly for Mike, & the ring (which appears to have been cut from the table) seems to be his seal for a parasitic covenant ("With this ring I thee wed")...
I don't think it's a definitive explanation by any stretch (obviously multiple meanings are suggested with almost all of Lynch's symbols/abstractions), just something to think about.
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Re: Let's talk about MIKE

Postby Jasper » Sat Mar 05, 2016 12:30 am

Saturn's child wrote:Forgive me if it's been mentioned, but I've always thought:

Formica --> 'Formikea' --> 'For Mike'


I think that's a good observation. I don't know if I've heard it before or not, though it seems blazingly obvious when you spell it out like this.

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