'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Thu Jul 26, 2018 6:57 pm

AXX°N N. wrote:I think so. She was mentioned in the Dossier as murdered ... and anything written in the Dossier, outside of Laura being referred to as murdered (by Briggs and Preston), is actually taking place in the new "official" timeline. So Teresa should still be dead, as well the saps Windom killed.


Hmm. That’s not my interpretation. I thought everything up until near the end of TFD took place in the original universe — or alternatively, in a constantly-shifting liquid membrane between countless realities, explaining the inconsistencies like Robert Jacoby dying twice (I still think Mark dealing with the deterioration of Warren Frost’s memory has a lot to do with the nature of reality in both books, which Mark has not denied when asked although he also understandably doesn’t want to talk about it). TSHoTP pretty clearly takes place in a timeline where Laura died — not only does Briggs discuss Laura’s death, but other sources like Dr. Jacoby do as well. As for TFD, I’d be curious to check if there are explicit references to Laura’s death throughout the book, but it seems odd that Tammy would have conducted extensive interviews and months of research and never came across any reference to Laura’s “disappearance” until near the end of the process. OTOH, I admit that your interpretation makes more logical story sense (that the timeline shift would have occurred right when Cooper disappeared and time traveled, not months later).
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby AXX°N N. » Thu Jul 26, 2018 7:42 pm

Mr. Reindeer wrote:
AXX°N N. wrote:I think so. She was mentioned in the Dossier as murdered ... and anything written in the Dossier, outside of Laura being referred to as murdered (by Briggs and Preston), is actually taking place in the new "official" timeline. So Teresa should still be dead, as well the saps Windom killed.


Hmm. That’s not my interpretation. I thought everything up until near the end of TFD took place in the original universe — or alternatively, in a constantly-shifting liquid membrance between countless realities, explaining the inconsistencies like Robert Jacoby dying twice (I still think Mark dealing with the deterioration of Warren Frost’s memory has a lot to do with the nature of reality in both books, which Mark has not denied when asked although he also understandably doesn’t want to talk about it). TSHoTP pretty clearly takes place in a timeline where Laura died — not only does Briggs discuss Laura’s death, but other sources like Dr. Jacoby do as well. As for TFD, I’d be curious to check if there are explicit references to Laura’s death throughout the book, but it seems odd that Tammy would have conducted extensive interviews and months of research and never came across any reference to Laura’s “disappearance” until near the end of the process. OTOH, I admit that your interpretation makes more logical story sense (that the timeline shift would have occurred right when Cooper disappeared and time traveled, not months later).

I'm not exactly settled on it myself. That it exists in a state of uncertainty has been appealing to me also ... I like your use of the word fluid. My reading of it being in the new timeline is in part due to my experience realizing it as a sequel to the new season, in terms of chronology. As in, I realize Mark has many other reasons for publishing it after the season, but I was struck by a bait and switch the first time I read it, as I interpreted it ... that if it's true that not only were things like Norma & Ed's wedding set after the new show, but much of the material, there's a strange structural thing going on, in that what we suspected we were reading as gap filling material, is actually this establishment of a wholly new timeline (because the past seems changed as the future, or are they one in the same?), whose existence begins at the end of the season. I was never certain how true that was in retrospect about events in TSHOTP; for instance, if the WTTP guidebook football game, perhaps, was canon to the old timeline, TSHOTP's version in the new one, post-Coop disappearance. This would include, also, retcons perhaps. Retcons retconned as retcons?

Totally forgot about Jacoby! This puts a logjam in my thinking. I was teasing out a potential reason why Briggs mentioning Laura's murder in his dossier wouldn't exactly shoot a hole in that reading, having something to do with his material coming from portal-hopping, secured against distortion somehow (because the way it was stored was awful strange) but I never developed it enough to feel confident... Perhaps Cooper's commute to the past, in real time, takes quite a few months?

There's another reading (perhaps not irreconcilable with these other ones) that's more thematic in a way, and that's that TP was specifically noticing the timeline's gradual change while no one else did, because she had been gravitating toward the center of this case ... but unlike Briggs, Jeffries or Cooper, she resists the pull and climbs out of it before it drags her in. I like that reading because it fits in with the many universes reading, which I have trouble reconciling with the Dossiers sliding from just one reality to another. Inconsistencies aside, it's sort of a binary. But in this case, there are multiple realities, but one has to sort of begin to dive into them ala tragic Cooper before one sees the differences, like peeling off the layers. There seems to be an implication, because most of the characters don't notice, that things like the Dossiers, or just written media in general, is a surface layer thing, which of course fits in with the themes on secrets and coverups.
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Jul 27, 2018 5:33 am

I’m starting to like the idea that Dale “broke” reality/time, and that the universe is just constantly shifting and changing without rhyme or reason throughout the two books. As you note, the books are too all-over-the-place for a binary “two universes” approach to even begin to make sense of the inconsistencies. Perhaps the “disappeared Laura” world will only last for a few days, and then some new reality/past narrative will take over. Honestly, this would make more sense than most time travel narratives. I love time travel fiction, but it’s almost impossible to execute in a logical way, because of the classic paradox: As soon as you go back and kill Hitler, you create a new world with no holocaust...which means that in the new world, you have no reason to travel back....which means that Hitler is never killed..... Lather, rinse, repeat. Perhaps what we’re seeing throughout the two books is the universe trying to cope with the trauma of Dale having created this paradox.
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Strawberry » Fri Jul 27, 2018 12:22 pm

Mr. Reindeer wrote:I’m starting to like the idea that Dale “broke” reality/time, and that the universe is just constantly shifting and changing without rhyme or reason throughout the two books. As you note, the books are too all-over-the-place for a binary “two universes” approach to even begin to make sense of the inconsistencies. Perhaps the “disappeared Laura” world will only last for a few days, and then some new reality/past narrative will take over. Honestly, this would make more sense than most time travel narratives. I love time travel fiction, but it’s almost impossible to execute in a logical way, because of the classic paradox: As soon as you go back and kill Hitler, you create a new world with no holocaust...which means that in the new world, you have no reason to travel back....which means that Hitler is never killed..... Lather, rinse, repeat. Perhaps what we’re seeing throughout the two books is the universe trying to cope with the trauma of Dale having created this paradox.

In your hypothetical scenario, there seems to be no need to go back since the problem was already resolved.

(Wrote a whole bunch of stuff after this until my head hurt, then deleted it all).

Good grief, I feel like The Foreman after he read The Frenchman's letter...

Anyway I don't believe that time travel could ever be possible because to me there is only the present -- things change and we use "time" to measure "a number of changes" -- but that doesn't mean that time travel theories and stories aren't interesting as hell, because they are!

I suppose if you could control all matter, and force things to happen in reverse, then you could restore the world to a previous state, but that wouldn't be time travel at all, it would be reordering, and it could never be exactly how it was unless you, the observer, also allowed yourself to revert. If you didn't, then things would not be exactly the same. There would either be a you that is aware of the change, or there would be two of you -- one that is aware and one that is not. Either way things could not run as they did before. That could only happen if you allowed yourself to roll back as well, at which point you would not remember things as they were before you rolled them back, meaning nothing would be different going forward, thus negating the act of rolling them back to begin with.

So I can see a paradox in trying to alter reality by way of reordering, but theorizing about time travel is just not possible right now, because I don't have any coffee.
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby AXX°N N. » Fri Jul 27, 2018 7:16 pm

Mr. Reindeer wrote:I’m starting to like the idea that Dale “broke” reality/time, and that the universe is just constantly shifting and changing without rhyme or reason throughout the two books. As you note, the books are too all-over-the-place for a binary “two universes” approach to even begin to make sense of the inconsistencies. Perhaps the “disappeared Laura” world will only last for a few days, and then some new reality/past narrative will take over. Honestly, this would make more sense than most time travel narratives. I love time travel fiction, but it’s almost impossible to execute in a logical way, because of the classic paradox: As soon as you go back and kill Hitler, you create a new world with no holocaust...which means that in the new world, you have no reason to travel back....which means that Hitler is never killed..... Lather, rinse, repeat. Perhaps what we’re seeing throughout the two books is the universe trying to cope with the trauma of Dale having created this paradox.

I can get on board with that--and I agree, though I love the idea of time travel, narratives always select one of seemingly two options. Which is absurd, given the pronounced complications in even the concept of time itself ... I think this reconciles a lot, because it makes sense of the books taking place chronologically after Dale's traipse into the netherworld, as well as the odd contradictions between seemingly multiple timelines.I think the answer to why Twin Peaks perhaps doesn't run into that paradox is because of the existence of the Red Room. I always imagined it as a sort of vacuum of time; Dale enters it once, and now has always entered it (or did he always always enter?), and Annie appears in a prequel when she shouldn't. I think perhaps Dale's hubris was in using this pocket of time without restraint, descending into reality and attempting the impossible, throwing many things, past and present, out of whack. Maybe the Red Room, even, exists in the first place as necessity to resolve the paradox.

Mr. Strawberry wrote:I suppose if you could control all matter, and force things to happen in reverse, then you could restore the world to a previous state, but that wouldn't be time travel at all, it would be reordering, and it could never be exactly how it was...

These are great thoughts! I always felt in time travel narratives there was something far, far too human-consciousness-centric about it ... what about atoms, that table over there, a salt grain, a little bug. Geez!
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:06 pm

AXX°N N. wrote:These are great thoughts! I always felt in time travel narratives there was something far, far too human-consciousness-centric about it ... what about atoms, that table over there, a salt grain, a little bug. Geez!


This is why I find stuff like Nadine being predestined to lose her eye in various timelines, whether it’s in 1969 or 1987, absurd from a scientific/atomic standpoint. A lot of time travel fiction falls prey to this kind of thing, and it’s bad science. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t still work from a thematic/humanitarian standpoint, and as I said, I have a hunch that what Mark was getting at is far more interested in exploring human identity and memory than in being scientifically accurate. So I can certainly appreciate it in that light.
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby mtwentz » Fri Jul 27, 2018 8:37 pm

Mr. Reindeer wrote:
AXX°N N. wrote:These are great thoughts! I always felt in time travel narratives there was something far, far too human-consciousness-centric about it ... what about atoms, that table over there, a salt grain, a little bug. Geez!


This is why I find stuff like Nadine being predestined to lose her eye in various timelines, whether it’s in 1969 or 1987, absurd from a scientific/atomic standpoint.


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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby baxter » Fri Jul 27, 2018 9:32 pm

This is my favourite article on the paradoxes of time travel:

https://www.csus.edu/indiv/m/merlinos/p ... travel.pdf

Definitely worth a read. I'm teaching general relativity at the moment, and there is certainly no problem theoretically in having time travel. Technologically it's completely insane, but it isn't obviously impossible. Relativity also offers a natural framework for defining causality, rendering much previous metaphysics moot (in my biased opinion).

What I like about Twin Peaks vs, say, the X Files is that things that are supposed to be weird and incomprehensible (e.g. other realities, "demons", strange life forms) are actually weird and incomprehensible, and incredibly hard to follow and understand. If you read the plot of Part 17 and 18 on paper, it wouldn't be half as impressive as the screen version.
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Re: 'Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier' Novel by Mark Frost 10/31 (SPOILERS)

Postby Mr. Strawberry » Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:12 pm

AXX°N N. wrote:These are great thoughts! I always felt in time travel narratives there was something far, far too human-consciousness-centric about it ... what about atoms, that table over there, a salt grain, a little bug. Geez!

I really appreciate that. I'd never had that particular thought before, but responding to Mr. Reindeer's hypothetical scenario got me to focus and explore possibilities. The more I worked on moving around through the proposed scenario and doing away with paradoxes, the more I ran into dilemmas that seemingly discounted the possibility of time travel itself.

Eventually I hit upon the idea of simply inverting every action and process and chemical reaction and force in motion, resulting in a literal reversal of order. What's funny about the concept is that it supports the notion that you actually can go back if you really want to, but you force all of existence to go back with you.
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