Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby dronerstone » Fri Aug 25, 2017 3:27 am

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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby writersblock » Fri Aug 25, 2017 3:44 am

Novalis wrote:
Cappy wrote:It might be coincidence that they filmed the Convenience Store hotel at the same locale as the hotel from FWWM, but it does force me to re-think that scene from the movie.

The movie treats it as a real world event, as seen through a flashback, but could Leland perhaps have unknowingly passed through the Convenience Store to reach this hotel, and could the situation have been initiated or manipulated by the Spirits to compel him to "fell a victim"? We do see the young Tremond boy at the hotel, which in hindsight seems like evidence of Lodge happenings.

I don't want to insinuate that it was all some mystical hallucination on Leland's part, because I think it really happened, but it might be possible that it took place between the real world and the spirit world so to speak, especially when considering that this might have been the moment of highest conflict between Leland's sense of self and BOB. It was this narrowly avoided encounter with Laura at the hotel that forced Leland/BOB to murder Theresa in order to preserve the image of Leland, both to society and to himself.

Also, Jeffries, a real world human, is disembodied and trapped at a room here, but humans can seemingly be trapped in any of the Lodge locales.


Interesting ideas. As in, Teresa and Laura may not have been together at the motel at all that day, and Leland was only shown this mirage to trigger a panic reaction and hasten his submission to BOB? I kinda like that. The gloopy bass of the Black Dog Runs at Night music and the Tremond boy hopping about as Leland flees the scene also lends some weight to it being a conceit on the part of spirits.


But the missing pieces shows that Teresa puts the pieces together that Leland is Laura's dad because of that scene...
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Voided » Fri Aug 25, 2017 4:02 am

The crawling woman in the Roadhouse....her name is Ruby, apparently. Sounds much like Judy...I wonder if this is significant...after all, she is connected to Cooper in the act of crawling. Is she Judy?
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Fri Aug 25, 2017 4:24 am

Voided wrote:The crawling woman in the Roadhouse....her name is Ruby, apparently. Sounds much like Judy...I wonder if this is significant...after all, she is connected to Cooper in the act of crawling. Is she Judy?


I suppose but I was thinking it would be someone already confirmed to meet with Coop or DoppelCoop.
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby TheGum » Fri Aug 25, 2017 4:41 am

sewhite2000 wrote:
TheGum wrote:I'm voting flash forward. It is the only scene in the entire series to occur before the opening credits, I think that is intended to give us a cue that it's not necessarily a part of the timeline we are entering.


I haven't watched since it originally aired, but are you absolutely sure this scene aired BEFORE the opening credits?!!!? I don't remember that at all ...

Edit: Just watched again. The only bit that appears before the credits is old footage of Laura telling Cooper "I'll see you again in 25 years" followed by some people-free shots of the town, the old shot of the girl running in front of the school and a zoom-in on Laura's photo. Cooper's conversation with the Fireman takes place after the credits.


Dang, I could have sworn it was before. At any rate, I'm still leaning flash forward. I don't see the fireman/giant pulling him out of the black lodge and depositing him back. But who knows, it could definitely go either way.
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Novalis » Fri Aug 25, 2017 4:56 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:Haven't seen this mentioned: at the beginning of the Sunset Blvd. clip, Norma Desmond mentions "the old team back together again...nothing can stop us!" I presume, combined with the Gordon shoutout, this deliberately teases a reunion between Coop and his former colleagues. And of course there's the added irony that Gordon's name is spoken by Cecil B. DeMille (playing himself), a founding father of cinema and a decidedly mainstream director. What a perfect clip.

On my cold viewing of this Part, I missed Hutch's line about the US being built on the murder of "Indians." Another strange case of a topic that obviously interested Mark being very casually name-dropped in almost whimsical fashion (a la Lewis & Clark in Wally Brando's ramblings). There's a "chicken or the egg" quality to all this. We know TSHoTP was written after the script was done, at the same time DKL was filming...we also know a lot of stuff on the show was added/expanded during filming (unclear how involved Mark was in the process, or how much was scripted vs. improvised on set). Obviously, the NM nuclear test stuff was written into the script then expanded on in the book...but when it comes to these casual, almost inconsequential, mentions of topics Mark explored in the book...did DKL drop them into the show during filming at Mark's request as little Easter eggs, or were they in the original script? BTW, Chantal and Hutch really started to grow on me with my rewatch of this Part. Their little scene was perfect, especially the button at the end of Chantal pointing out Mars. Up until tonight, I was sort of of the opinion that JJL was a bit wasted on this material, but I really fell in love with the character tonight rewatching that scene. There's almost a childlike innocence to her alongside the casual cruelty (sort of reminiscent of Taryn Manning as Doggett on Orange Is the New Black).

The Gersten/Steven scene didn't do much for me on first viewing (maybe because I was struggling to make out the dialogue, and my streaming feed was also freezing repeatedly, frustrating me)...but on rewatch, I found it mesmerizing. As soon as I finished rewatching the Part, I went back and watched that scene again with subtitles on, then again with subtitles off, having internalized the dialogue. The performances are raw and beautiful (I've been in love with Alicia Witt ever since I first saw the "Blackout" Hotel Room episode; I've been looking forward to seeing what DKL gave her in TP:TR, and I'm glad it ended up being such a powerful scene. Goddamn, she delivers). The prolonged closeup of the two is claustrophobic and suffocating....then without warning, DKL suddenly propels us into one of the clinically distant super-wide-shots that have been a trademark of this work, making us feel the alienating emptiness of the entire woods, the entire world, with these two tiny people so alone and isolated. On the one hand, I understand -- and even agree with, to some extent -- the argument that these characters haven't been properly developed and built-up from a conventional narrative standpoint, that we have no reason to care about them. But, to me, the scene itself is the reason to care about them, because it's so damn engaging. If this were a standalone 5-minute short film, no one would be complaining that we didn't have hours of setup and backstory. I'm not trying to excuse TP:TR for its unconventional and occasionally flat-out sloppy narrative progression (see Walter Lawford, who may as well have "Dramatic Device" printed on his business card); this is an element of the show I think many of us will struggle with and debate for years. I love seeing DKL experiment with expectations and spit in the face of convention, but that doesn't mean everything he does is gold, or that he and Mark aren't just lazy or overconfident in themselves sometimes. And, if this is the end of Steven, there's a good argument to be made that we should have seen more of him / been more invested. (And if Becky did indeed die offscreen, that's a whole other percolator of fish.) But, big picture aside, I honestly think this was one of the more incredible scenes we've gotten from TP:TR, and along with the Log Lady death sequence, functions as Exhibit A against those who claim there is a lack of humanity in the new show. Maybe it's not the type of humanity some fans WANTED...but the characterization of this show as cold/removed just doesn't make sense to me. As I mentioned above, the Steven/Gersten scene utilizes one of those wide shots that many of the Profoundly Disappointed have cited as frustratingly distancing....but DKL deploys it in a very intentional, strategic way to conjure a particular mood, and it doesn't pull us away from the characters AT ALL. Quite the opposite, it makes us feel their isolation.

I know there are a ton of theories about Audrey (I personally love the "wood" theory), but I'm just going with it and revelling in the Beckett/Sartre of it all. I can't be the only one who finds Middleton's performance hysterically funny, right? Every line reading and gesture is a perfect manifestation of passive-aggressive impatient patience.

Has anyone commented on the fact that Margaret appears to have a second land line on the table, right next to the phone she uses to call Hawk? I've noticed it since Part 1, and always found it weird, but I don't think I've mentioned it in a post. I doubt there's any significance, but it's certainly an odd set dressing choice.


There's a lot to agree with in this wonderful post.

When taken together Hutch and Chantal struck me originally as a Pumpkin-and-Hunny-Bunny / Royale-with-cheese Jules-and-Vincent import from Tarantino, with a vague Bonnie-and-Clyde aura. Their chat about Mormons, full of casual assumptions and popular canards (according to the experts) struck me as typical Tarantino dialogue: superficiality and violence, all surface. In this part however they do appear at least marginally deeper than those garrulous trigger-hands with a love of fast food. Now they know some history, and can even name celestial objects; albeit in a somewhat childlike way. I felt we saw a tiny sliver of vulnerability in that, a glimpse of human motivations. Hutch seems somewhat on the defensive, rationalising his lifestyle, looking at the bigger picture (including the night sky) as if momentarily feeling the need to quell some kind of incipient conscience; Chantal is pointing out the planet of war as if she associates with it or feels some affinity. Maybe she feels kinship with Mars in the sense of 'being born under a bad sign'. All in all, the dialogue is a little deeper than usual.

Agree completely re: Gersten/Stephen scene. I find it bleak and claustrophobic, but also incredibly haunting and expansive. Those wide shots are anything but uncaring.

Yes! The passive-aggression of Middleton is hilarious to behold. It's as if he's trying to be a stone, as Frank is during his dressing down by Doris, but can't carry it off; he can't help himself from replying to Audrey's digs and insults and is constantly on the brink of losing his temper without ever actually losing it.

I must admit, I didn't spot Margaret's doppelphone, but yes that is rather strange. If it was intended to add mystery it was lost on me, but the great thing about these forums is they equip us with these details so re-watches become ever more involved.
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: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby writersblock » Fri Aug 25, 2017 5:46 am

cgs027 wrote:
TheGum wrote:Good catch- this would seem to indicate the Doppelcoop killed Briggs, and challenge the theory that Briggs somehow orchestrated the body switch.


This is where stuff gets super messy, though... If Mr. C killed Briggs, he was there when Ruth/Hastings showed up. So... he could have easily gotten the coordinates off of Ruth at that point. What is the point of the whole "Ray, I need those coordinates" (via the secretary, no less) then?

I'm still hoping there's some logic behind all of these coordinates, but am losing hope. Especially after it appeared that Jefferies gave Mr. C coordinates during their meeting (again -- what was the point of Ray then?). I highly doubt there are 3-4 different sets of coordinates flying around at this point -- there are only a few hours left... And someone noted somewhere (reddit?) that the Jefferies #s seemed to line up with the ones on Ruth's arm, anyways.


He doesn't NEED them. He wants them :D
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby LateReg » Fri Aug 25, 2017 6:24 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:There are definitely some subplots that feel oddly rushed and underdeveloped, considering that this thing was scripted and shot as one long production AND outsized to twice the initial planned length. Plot has always been a bit perfunctory to DKL, but with certain subplots here, it feels almost like a frustrating obligation, like a kid being forced to reluctantly say his prayers. This might be the downside of the L/F collaboration. Unlike last time, DKL seems to be struggling to honor and include Mark's contributions almost religiously, even when his heart really isn't in it as director.


I love how subplots feel underdeveloped. I think a huge part of the creation of The Return is giving the viewer the idea that life is taking place outside the frame. Between the roadhouse sequences and then the investigations that have clearly taken place offscreen, it seems that way. With Chad's arrest and Truman's reveal to Ben that he is on top of the hit and run case, it's a new method of storytelling that allows the writers to not have to waste time on certain procedural aspects of the thriller. It's odd to see at first but ultimately refreshing, in my experience. And oerfectly in line with the way everything feels like impressions of events in this season.
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby thedarktrees » Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:09 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:Haven't seen this mentioned: at the beginning of the Sunset Blvd. clip, Norma Desmond mentions "the old team back together again...nothing can stop us!" I presume, combined with the Gordon shoutout, this deliberately teases a reunion between Coop and his former colleagues. And of course there's the added irony that Gordon's name is spoken by Cecil B. DeMille (playing himself), a founding father of cinema and a decidedly mainstream director. What a perfect clip.

On my cold viewing of this Part, I missed Hutch's line about the US being built on the murder of "Indians." Another strange case of a topic that obviously interested Mark being very casually name-dropped in almost whimsical fashion (a la Lewis & Clark in Wally Brando's ramblings). There's a "chicken or the egg" quality to all this. We know TSHoTP was written after the script was done, at the same time DKL was filming...we also know a lot of stuff on the show was added/expanded during filming (unclear how involved Mark was in the process, or how much was scripted vs. improvised on set). Obviously, the NM nuclear test stuff was written into the script then expanded on in the book...but when it comes to these casual, almost inconsequential, mentions of topics Mark explored in the book...did DKL drop them into the show during filming at Mark's request as little Easter eggs, or were they in the original script? BTW, Chantal and Hutch really started to grow on me with my rewatch of this Part. Their little scene was perfect, especially the button at the end of Chantal pointing out Mars. Up until tonight, I was sort of of the opinion that JJL was a bit wasted on this material, but I really fell in love with the character tonight rewatching that scene. There's almost a childlike innocence to her alongside the casual cruelty (sort of reminiscent of Taryn Manning as Doggett on Orange Is the New Black).

The Gersten/Steven scene didn't do much for me on first viewing (maybe because I was struggling to make out the dialogue, and my streaming feed was also freezing repeatedly, frustrating me)...but on rewatch, I found it mesmerizing. As soon as I finished rewatching the Part, I went back and watched that scene again with subtitles on, then again with subtitles off, having internalized the dialogue. The performances are raw and beautiful (I've been in love with Alicia Witt ever since I first saw the "Blackout" Hotel Room episode; I've been looking forward to seeing what DKL gave her in TP:TR, and I'm glad it ended up being such a powerful scene. Goddamn, she delivers). The prolonged closeup of the two is claustrophobic and suffocating....then without warning, DKL suddenly propels us into one of the clinically distant super-wide-shots that have been a trademark of this work, making us feel the alienating emptiness of the entire woods, the entire world, with these two tiny people so alone and isolated. On the one hand, I understand -- and even agree with, to some extent -- the argument that these characters haven't been properly developed and built-up from a conventional narrative standpoint, that we have no reason to care about them. But, to me, the scene itself is the reason to care about them, because it's so damn engaging. If this were a standalone 5-minute short film, no one would be complaining that we didn't have hours of setup and backstory. I'm not trying to excuse TP:TR for its unconventional and occasionally flat-out sloppy narrative progression (see Walter Lawford, who may as well have "Dramatic Device" printed on his business card); this is an element of the show I think many of us will struggle with and debate for years. I love seeing DKL experiment with expectations and spit in the face of convention, but that doesn't mean everything he does is gold, or that he and Mark aren't just lazy or overconfident in themselves sometimes. And, if this is the end of Steven, there's a good argument to be made that we should have seen more of him / been more invested. (And if Becky did indeed die offscreen, that's a whole other percolator of fish.) But, big picture aside, I honestly think this was one of the more incredible scenes we've gotten from TP:TR, and along with the Log Lady death sequence, functions as Exhibit A against those who claim there is a lack of humanity in the new show. Maybe it's not the type of humanity some fans WANTED...but the characterization of this show as cold/removed just doesn't make sense to me. As I mentioned above, the Steven/Gersten scene utilizes one of those wide shots that many of the Profoundly Disappointed have cited as frustratingly distancing....but DKL deploys it in a very intentional, strategic way to conjure a particular mood, and it doesn't pull us away from the characters AT ALL. Quite the opposite, it makes us feel their isolation.

I know there are a ton of theories about Audrey (I personally love the "wood" theory), but I'm just going with it and revelling in the Beckett/Sartre of it all. I can't be the only one who finds Middleton's performance hysterically funny, right? Every line reading and gesture is a perfect manifestation of passive-aggressive impatient patience.

Has anyone commented on the fact that Margaret appears to have a second land line on the table, right next to the phone she uses to call Hawk? I've noticed it since Part 1, and always found it weird, but I don't think I've mentioned it in a post. I doubt there's any significance, but it's certainly an odd set dressing choice.



Awesome post — some really great thoughts here. I totally agree on the Steven/Gersten scene from part 15, and also with your general take on the diminished role of all these subplots. A lot of these subplots have definitely not gone as expected, and I can see how that has maybe frustrated some viewers. For me, right from the start of Season 3, it always felt like this was to be a very different style of TP, a big part of which had to do with having its soap opera elements very clearly shorn off. I think a lot of people maybe had this expectation that it would retain the soap-ish elements of the original. It doesn’t. But as I’ve stuck with the season, you really start to see more and more how this show REALLY does its own thing, and that has made it feel much less like its “missing” elements of the original. The new TP is writing its own ticket for sure.

The Steven/Gersten scene was so, so compelling, harrowing, and haunting. Even without knowing any context for how it came to be, or what’s to happen next.

But I dunno, I still can’t get with the Hutch & Chantal characters. I want to re-watch their last scene now with what you and Novalis have pointed out about it. But I just can’t past how they just come off as such canned Tarantino-style clones. The pseudo-philosophical, pseudo-moralizing aspects of their truck convo under the stars just seems so empty, and so clearly positioned as something that’s supposed to clash with their cold killing, and stereotyped southern simplicity. I just don’t get anything different or interesting from them.

That said, I think it’s awesome that Tim Roth was cast for this role. When he first appeared — now, that was a curve. Took a second to realize that Hutch was actually Tim Roth, followed by this delighted “What THIS is who he’s playing??” reaction. That was great.
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:14 am

It's for sure fun to look back on our expectations from many of these actors upon initially seeing the 217 cast list (Roth, JJL, Watts, Sizemore, Richard Chamberlain!), and then realizing what they actually were given to do onscreen!
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby referendum » Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:27 am

Hutch & Chantal characters. I just can’t past how they just come off as such canned Tarantino-style clones. The pseudo-philosophical, pseudo-moralizing aspects of their truck convo under the stars just seems so empty, and so clearly positioned as something that’s supposed to clash with their cold killing, and stereotyped southern simplicity. I just don’t get anything different or interesting from them.


there are some bits of this, like Green Glove, or Like Michael Cera, which are like stupid one off jokes. Hutch & Chantal dialogues are as you say a stupid one-off Tarantino joke. They are so obviously quotes. This works fine when they hardly say anything and are just operators ( receiving instructions from Mr C, shooting warden, shooting Todd, etc), robots performing simple tasks. It is when they are given ( as you say pseudo-philosphical ) dialogue that the joke falls flat. It is like if Ike the Spike had been given a scene visiting his mum at the nursing home, or something. We don't need background or character depth in hired assassins. We don't need to know anything more about them apart from that they are lean mean killing machines. Or if we are given more, it better be interesting. They have no other function than to kill people and eat fast food. Dialogue here is, as you say, too sub-Tarantino to have any interest. Just a shot of them driving along at night eating burgers on the way to Vegas would have been fine. Lynch! Where's yr editor?!
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Novalis » Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:56 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:It's for sure fun to look back on our expectations from many of these actors upon initially seeing the 217 cast list (Roth, JJL, Watts, Sizemore, Richard Chamberlain!), and then realizing what they actually were given to do onscreen!


Fearing the worst for any hopes of a surprise Bowie, I had secretly longed for Roth to play Jeffries. I felt he, if anyone, could pull it off. I was then crestfallen when he showed up in part 9 as Hutch. It's been a long road since then to even wanting to like this Hutch character, so sorely a repeat of Roth typecasts, but there it is. I can just about stomach it now.
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: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby starmand » Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:02 am

Maybe a bit off-topic, but, regarding Hutch, Chantal and their Tarantino-ness...

The first time I watched Wild At Heart, in around 2006, I came away pretty disappointed. This won the Pom d'Or? It seemed like a Tarantino knock-off to me. Then I realized the year it came out. 2 full years before Reservoir Dogs. Then Tarantino's quote post-FWWM about Lynch "disappearing up his own ass" and "I loved him, I loved him" made more sense to me. As far as I'm concerned, Tarantino cribbed a lot of his style from Lynch, so I don't mind Lynch doing a little back. :D
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:05 am

Novalis wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:It's for sure fun to look back on our expectations from many of these actors upon initially seeing the 217 cast list (Roth, JJL, Watts, Sizemore, Richard Chamberlain!), and then realizing what they actually were given to do onscreen!


Fearing the worst for any hopes of a surprise Bowie, I had secretly longed for Roth to play Jeffries. I felt he, if anyone, could pull it off. I was then crestfallen when he showed up in part 9 as Hutch. It's been a long road since then to even wanting to like this Hutch character, so sorely a repeat of Roth typecasts, but there it is. I can just about stomach it now.


Pretty sure the Bowie ship has sadly sailed with the overdub actor. It's too bad -- DKL could EASILY have gotten Bowie to voice the teapot over the phone, at least. Clearly he didn't know how short time was. :/

The only casting surprise that makes sense to me at this point is Ontkean (via Skype), but that possibility scares me in its own way. With all the buildup, he'd presumably look pretty ill if he appears...and we know Ontkean pulled out last-minute for personal reasons. Not to pry into the actor's personal life, but I'm a little scared that he might actually be sick. The Coulson stuff has been beautiful but heartbreaking -- even knowing that she passed, nothing could have prepared me for her appearance. I'm praying that Ontkean is healthy, and if he appears as a sickly Harry it's done with makeup.
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Re: Part 15 - There's some fear in letting go (SPOILERS)

Postby Framed_Angel » Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:25 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote: Chantal and Hutch really started to grow on me with my rewatch of this Part. Their little scene was perfect, especially the button at the end of Chantal pointing out Mars.
Did anyone else wonder WHAT was in the bag Hutch handed her as she asked about her 'dessert'? I am also liking this pair more.. but the eerie effect of their scene at the farm in Part 9 when the slain farmer couple were shown briefly, keeps me on edge about their debasement. Since we weren't shown what he got for her dessert I imagined something like maybe a severed dog leg ; )

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