Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

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claaa7
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Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby claaa7 » Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:54 pm

These two gentlemen were of course the two main writers of Twin Peaks season 2 together with Mark Frost and they are usually credited together but from what I understand they often worked quite separately. Reading "Reflections" it becomes clear that Harley Peyton and Mark Frost was really close, while he had a pretty big falling out with David Lynch (notice how he didn't get invited to write for "On The Air"). Engels on the other hand shared Lynch's dry sense of humor, a love for the bizarre, and the darker elements which made them bond enough to write "Fire Walk With Me" together, as well as another silly script called "Dream of the Bovine" (is that online somewhere like "Ronnie Rocket" and "One Saliva Bubble"?).

i know that Harley Peyton came up with two of the series most disliked sections - the Nadine high-school superstrength goofiness as well as the James/Evelyn noir drama (which i personally don't think is that bad compared to some other stuff), but he was also responsible for one of the high points in early S2 in Harold Smith. Very interesting, well-written character. For some reason, and this isn't because of the book, I didn't always feel that great about Harley Peyton for the most part, i can't really pinpoint it. He sure did some marvellous things, and as i understand it he was very good especially with the high-school kids dialouge and writing (which is especially evident in S1) which makes it even more perplexing how badly Nadine as a high-schooler of 18 was handled (like a 12 year old girl). I do feel that he had a love for the more soapy elements of the show which is fine to a degree but when they take charge it doesn't work as well.

So based mostly on "Fire Walk With Me" and "The Missing Pieces" with it's incredible blend of mystery, dread, bizarre, yet dark humour ("what is the world coming to when you kill a man for baby laxative),

I love a lot about what both of these guys brought to Twin Peaks and without them i think we would have a series that was cancelled much quicker, so please don't take this as a hate thread or anything. I like a lot of what Peyton personally did for Peaks, and he sure invested a lot if it, i'm just interested in who you all prefer.
djerdap
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby djerdap » Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:58 pm

Probably Peyton because he gave Albert his best lines, and because Episode 3 just might be my favourite ep outside of the Lynch-directed episodes. Very disciplined in terms of character coverage and thematically focused, if a tad anti-climactic. Bobby and Jacoby have some of their finest moments here as well.

Both Engels and Peyton had their share of missteps in season 2, but I can't seem to blame them if both creators were nowhere to be found. It was impossible to immediately dig your way out of that hole.
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby CuriousWoman » Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:05 am

djerdap wrote:Probably Peyton because he gave Albert his best lines


IIRC, Mark Frost was the one who wrote Albert's peace monologue to Harry. I think Peyton said so on his reddit AMA.
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby djerdap » Wed Apr 12, 2017 10:34 am

CuriousWoman wrote:
djerdap wrote:Probably Peyton because he gave Albert his best lines


IIRC, Mark Frost was the one who wrote Albert's peace monologue to Harry. I think Peyton said so on his reddit AMA.


Not the lines I was thinking of. All of his scenes in episode 3 are gold.
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Mr. Reindeer
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Wed Apr 12, 2017 11:00 am

As a person, based on interviews I've seen/read, I like Peyton more than Engels. Peyton really got shafted by being handed a show-runner job he never asked for, when he had minimal experience in the TV industry. At least based on Peyton's version of events, DKL treated him rather poorly. While I really question a lot of the choices/judgment calls he made in blocking out season 2's story, he comes across in interviews as a thoughtful guy who takes his craft seriously, similar to Mark (albeit not as talented).

On the other hand, Engels generally comes off in interviews as a goofball who misremembers as much as he remembers (both stuff regarding the show as well as historical facts -- I think in one interview he placed Eisenhower's inauguration in 1954). Engels's apparent lack of loyalty to Mark after his friend gave him a huge break also rubs me the wrong way. I do love FWWM, and I guess a fair amount of that can be chalked up to Engels, but by and large, it seems like his preferences tend more toward the silly than the dark.

In terms of actual output, FWWM probably gives Engels a slight edge for me, although who knows how much of it he was actually responsible for.
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AXX°N N.
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby AXX°N N. » Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:12 pm

I like Peyton more, but that's based on the fact I feel I understand exactly what Peyton contributed, because he's actually lucid in interviews. I don't have much of a grasp on Engels at all because every time I've seen him talk, he's largely incoherent. And one of the few thing he's ever worked on beside random tv episodes for random series is main co-writer/creator of this thing: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0185936/?ref_=nm_flmg_wr_4

So, in short, Engels has always been a sort of enigma to me, but Peyton seems like an affable, swell enough guy. Also I for one like the Nadine subplot. :o
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Agent Earle » Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:43 am

AXX°N N. wrote: And one of the few thing he's ever worked on beside random tv episodes for random series is main co-writer/creator of this thing: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0185936/?ref_=nm_flmg_wr_4



Oh, my God - Engels actually had a hand in this obscurity, you say? Well, IMDb certainly says so. I had no idea! I watched the thing a few years back to write a review of it for this horror movie guide my buddy and I were putting together, but it never crossed my mind to check who (co-)wrote the stuff. Anyhow, the flick's certainly an interesting curiosity, not exactly horrible but far from good; it's safest to say it's in the realm of terminally weird - you can tell they were trying to create some sort of a franchise centered around the main character (some kind of monster basher /well, the title tells you as much :) / who steps out of a comic book, if my memory serves me correctly) and some alternative world that functions in accordance to its own logic and where he has his archenemy etc., but nothing ever came out of it, and of course the budget was terribly low and it reflects on bottom-of-the-barrel production values. I'm doubtful more than some 43 people even know it exists!
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MoondogJR
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby MoondogJR » Fri Apr 14, 2017 3:04 am

I'd say Engels. Mainly because of FWWM.
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DirkG
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby DirkG » Mon May 01, 2017 1:16 pm

Peyton - because he contributed heavily to Albert's sarcasm and he is one of the most important characters in TP. Also the fact that I don't actually really know what Engels wrote.
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bluefrank
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby bluefrank » Sat May 06, 2017 10:57 am

Engels for me.
Fire-blog-with-me
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Fire-blog-with-me » Tue May 16, 2017 8:45 pm

First I would like to say Hi! Long time lurker but first time poster. In terms of engagement with the wider fandom, most of my interactions and output/input has been on tumblr (same URL as my username here in case anyone was interested).

So in terms of Robert Engels or Harley Peyton, I think it would be good to assemble a bit of data (coming from a biochemistry/science background I like to do this sort of stuff haha)

Robert Engels (solo credits):
1. Episode 4
2. Episode 10

Harley Peyton (solo credits):
1. Episode 3
2. Episode 6
3. Episode 9
4. Episode 20

Harley Peyton & Robert Engels (co-writing):
1. Episode 13
2. Episode 19
3. Episode 22
4. Episode 25
5. Episode 27

Harley Peyton & Robert Engels with other co-writers:
1. Episode 11 (w/ Jerry Stahl and Mark Frost)
2. Episode 16 (w/ Mark Frost)
3. Episode 29 (w/ Mark Frost)

Harley Peyton co-writing sans Robert Engels:
1. Episode 26 (w/ Mark Frost)

Robert Engels co-writing sans Harley Peyton:
1. Fire Walk with Me and Missing Pieces (w/ David Lynch)

Looking at the list above, in terms of quantity... Peyton has Engels beaten by a long shot. But we should consider quality over quantity and so we should discuss this more. Both Peyton and Engels have one David Lynch collaboration without any Mark Frost involvement (Episode 9 for Peyton, FWWM for Engels). Looking at Ep 9 and FWWM we can see the contrast between the Peyton and Engels sensibilities. Not just in terms of content which obviously has a lot to do with how the two contrast/compare, but also in terms of formalism/craft. Peyton's Ep 9 has this really snappy, clever, pop culture sensibility (also seen in most of his episodes) and other than Episode 2 and Episode 6, is probably the most hip slick stylish episode of the series. FWWM is much weirder and intimate, very much at home with certain scenes and qualities of Episodes 4 and 10 (the spookiness that underlies both episodes and their intimacy--the camaraderies between the boys and girls in Ep 4 and the various Laura related scenes in 4 & 10).

In terms of co-writing credits (the bulk of credits for both writers), we should think of not only the episodes they contributed but the concepts they have contributed (some confirmed and others will be speculation). Harley Peyton has claimed to have come up with the following (maybe more maybe less I don't have time to look up references at the moment so forgive any errors) Nadine's super strength high school odyssey, Harold Smith, Evelyn Marsh Noir Adventure, etc. Robert Engels has not made nearly as many reputable claims on discrete contributions so in terms of what I see as his sensibilities through Eps 4/10 + FWWM/Missing Pieces, I think that Robert Engels probably developed Dead Dog Farm's lore (with the caveat that it could have come from Frost and/or Lynch) which keeps with his interest in the mythological side of TP.

Engels seems drawn toward the teen drama and science fiction/horror elements of the series, based off his solo scripts and his involvement with FWWM, writing with alternating ease between relaxed intimate drama and wild high-concept. Peyton, by contrast, is more drawn to the stylization, satire, and intrigue of the series along with contributing an infectious pop flair to his writing. However at the end of writing this post I am still torn on who I would pick... on the one hand, I think that Engels has a real knack for the weird and spooky as well as great drama re: Laura and the other teens. I love FWWM and so that would be enough to put him over the top but I attribute more of FWWM to Lynch (although that's not to lessen Engels value!). On the other hand, Harley Peyton has written more of Twin Peaks than anyone (so far) and the quality of his writing is at least equal to the magnitude of the quantity: a lot of the most iconic aspects of TP, its iconographies, come from Peyton episodes! The funeral, Audrey + Cooper's most romantic/loved scenes, the Cherry Stem, Audrey smoking in the closet, Waldo killed, the first half of the One Eyed Jack's sting, The Tremonds, Just You and I (although to be fair he didn't script that), BOB over the couch (again not as scripted but an analogue was in his script), Deliver the Message, Albert's best snarky wit and insults, Everyday give yourself a present, and so on.

I think even though I adore FWWM, I have to give it to Peyton.
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Agent Earle » Wed May 17, 2017 6:57 am

What a great first post! I'm a sucker for systematic classification and compartmentalization, so I love what you did there. As to who I'd pick between the two, the jury's still out as it's quite a tough call. Although I'm leaning more towards Peyton, to be honest - Lynch-directed E 9 (you do mean the second episode of season two, right?) is a contender for my favorite episode ever!
Fire-blog-with-me
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Fire-blog-with-me » Fri May 19, 2017 8:52 am

Agent Earle wrote:What a great first post! I'm a sucker for systematic classification and compartmentalization, so I love what you did there. As to who I'd pick between the two, the jury's still out as it's quite a tough call. Although I'm leaning more towards Peyton, to be honest - Lynch-directed E 9 (you do mean the second episode of season two, right?) is a contender for my favorite episode ever!


Thank you for the warm welcome! lol I picked the absolute worst time to stop being a lurker though because I am in the middle of finals and graduate a week from today but I can't stop the excitement for Sunday! Haha

Yea, it really is a very tough call to make because they did contribute so much of the actual Twin Peaks product directly.

Yes! Episode 9 is Season 2 Episode2 aka Coma! And it is one of my favorite episodes too. In terms of Lynch episodes it's just below Epiaode 29 and Episode 14 for me. Although on different days it would switch with Episode 2 (Red Room Dream Episode).
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LostInTheMovies
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby LostInTheMovies » Tue May 23, 2017 9:40 am

Fire-blog-with-me wrote:First I would like to say Hi! Long time lurker but first time poster. In terms of engagement with the wider fandom, most of my interactions and output/input has been on tumblr (same URL as my username here in case anyone was interested).

So in terms of Robert Engels or Harley Peyton, I think it would be good to assemble a bit of data (coming from a biochemistry/science background I like to do this sort of stuff haha)...


Love this post. Welcome to dugpa!
Fire-blog-with-me
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Re: Robert Engels or Harley Peyton

Postby Fire-blog-with-me » Wed May 24, 2017 1:55 pm

LostInTheMovies wrote:
Fire-blog-with-me wrote:First I would like to say Hi! Long time lurker but first time poster. In terms of engagement with the wider fandom, most of my interactions and output/input has been on tumblr (same URL as my username here in case anyone was interested).

So in terms of Robert Engels or Harley Peyton, I think it would be good to assemble a bit of data (coming from a biochemistry/science background I like to do this sort of stuff haha)...


Love this post. Welcome to dugpa!


Thank you! It's good to see a few familiar faces here from tumblr such as yourself and laughingpinecone!

Joel, im curious about your take on the matter: Peyton or Engels?

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