Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

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LostInTheMovies
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby LostInTheMovies » Fri Sep 08, 2017 7:57 am

Ashok wrote:
RetconMetatron wrote:The ending erased all previous episodes.


I didn't see any evidence in Part 18 that anything from Season 1+Season 2+FWWM was erased. The way the show is written, Agent Cooper's journey appears to have taken him across two separate timelines, both of which are equally important.

I suppose you could project Mulholland Drive's narrative onto the world of Twin Peaks and make a wild guess that Timeline 1 is a "dream" and that only Timeline 2 is "real" but that's just an assumption and there's absolutely no evidence to believe that the world of Twin Peaks is functioning like MD.


Agreed, and furthermore I'm not sure that what happens in episode 17 really "takes"...yes, we see the body disappear and Pete go fishing but that's before Laura disappears (and Sarah smashes the portrait). I think that may be significant, suggesting that rather than being pulled out of that universe altogether, she is being restored to her former fate. (My favorite interpretation is that she lets go and runs back herself but this isn't necessarily borne out by everything we see though I suppose the possibility remains vaguely open.)

By the way OT it's a stretch but I've been trying to figure out - is your avi Lea Seydoux? Looks like someone but can't put my finger on it.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby mine » Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:02 am

Castledoque wrote:
mine wrote:I don't interpret the ending as neither positive nor negative. It just doesn't work as an epilogue. It's a to be continued. It ends at a point where you aren't provided enough information to reach either conclusion. Cooper can still fail, but at the point The Return ends there's no real reason to believe so.
Had the show ended just before Cooper's inquiry about which year it was and Sarah was never heard and Laura never let that scream out there'd be a far stronger argument to be made about the ending being negative/dark and allow multiple interpretations of what it meant as such.
Laura's scream can easily mean Laura landed into Carrie at that moment after being catapulted out of the black lodge earlier making a similar scream. Kind of like Cooper replaced Dougy minus the electric socket.

Very well said. Actually Cooper and Carrie/Laura disappearing despondent into the night of Twin Peaks after not finding Sarah in the house - fade to black -the end, would have been an open and depressing ending, but an ending none the less. Or if Carrie/Laura suddenly showed signs of recognizing the house as they approached it and the whole thing faded to black, that again would have been an open more optimistic ending. I am not saying that either of these two proposed endings would make the show better, as I am not at all happy with the idea of bringing Laura back again, but they would be endings. What we actually got was not an ending, it was a cliffhanger.

It's interesting to me that it being a cliffhanger/set up for a sequel seems to be the conclusion that represents the middle ground between the show's viewers. You have people completely disappointed hating it and extremely satisfied people who pretty much say the ending did for them what they anticipated it would before the first episode even aired and those in the middle who the finale doesn't really work as an ending. It's interesting because even many who liked it were left with the same impression.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby LostInTheMovies » Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:05 am

Mr. Reindeer wrote:
yaxomoxay wrote:
blue_tomorrows wrote:What in the world happened to him in that decade between IE and now?


He started reading the daily newspaper.


Nah, he just started talking to Mark Frost more frequently. Which, if you've seen his Twitter feed, is the same as reading the paper.

I'm being glib, but I really do think there's a lot more of Mark in this season, for good or ill, than most people are giving credit for. I think we saw a lot of Mark's ideas and philosophy filtered through David's abstract lens.


Been wondering about this too. Do you have a post on here where you discuss it more in-depth? With all the activity on dugpa, I've found it hard to keep tabs on much here haha
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby LostInTheMovies » Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:31 am

powerleftist wrote:
Poiuyt wrote:Inland Empire was a critical success.

http://www.metacritic.com/movie/inland-empire

It also grossed $4 million worldwide.


... which is nothing and makes it the 239th most successful film of 2006.


How many of those 238 films cost as little as Inland Empire? And the critical point is important as well, considering the mixed-to-hostile receptions Lynch films were getting in the 90s; it showed a turning point had been reached with his reputation, which the gushing praise for the new series confirms. I think Lynch may have been frustrated that film-funding for middle-range films was drying up in the past 10 years (though ofc IE shows he didn't need that to make a movie), but I don't think he had much reason to be bitter. In the autumn of his life and career, his public persona had reached a summit where he was no longer angrily contested but seemed to widely accepted as a kind of lovable, eccentric "Uncle David" who had carved out his own niche in pop culture. He also remarried and had a child in his sixties.

This is all one reason I find the "angry, bitter Lynch has lost his faith in the world and made this work to express his fury" readings a bit wild. In a sense, except for the late 80s (when Twin Peaks was first conceived) Lynch has never had it better.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:14 am

LostInTheMovies wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:
yaxomoxay wrote:
He started reading the daily newspaper.


Nah, he just started talking to Mark Frost more frequently. Which, if you've seen his Twitter feed, is the same as reading the paper.

I'm being glib, but I really do think there's a lot more of Mark in this season, for good or ill, than most people are giving credit for. I think we saw a lot of Mark's ideas and philosophy filtered through David's abstract lens.


Been wondering about this too. Do you have a post on here where you discuss it more in-depth? With all the activity on dugpa, I've found it hard to keep tabs on much here haha


Nope, heh. I'd like to flesh it out, but my schedule has been brutal this week. I definitely tend to write more on this once I can do it justice, though.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby FlyingSquirrel » Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:57 am

LostInTheMovies wrote:This is all one reason I find the "angry, bitter Lynch has lost his faith in the world and made this work to express his fury" readings a bit wild. In a sense, except for the late 80s (when Twin Peaks was first conceived) Lynch has never had it better.


It did seem like Lynch was on a trajectory away from naturalism in his narratives, and towards increasingly bleak conclusions, for a period of time.

Blue Velvet, despite its unusual characters and heavy doses of Lynchian style and themes, might actually be his third most conventional narrative aside from The Elephant Man and The Straight Story. There's no use of supernatural or science fiction elements, nothing happens that couldn't happen in the real world, and the more sympathetic characters (Jeffrey, Sandy, and Dorothy) end up in an OK place at the end. (My own view, incidentally, is that Lynch is rarely if ever being ironic or satirical, so I don't think the "happy ending" aspect of BV is meant to be tongue-in-cheek in any way.)

Wild At Heart can also be read mostly literally, but Sailor and Lula were apparently headed for a split before the Sheryl Lee angel intervenes to get them back together. It's less clear that they could solve their own problems compared to the Blue Velvet protagonists.

Twin Peaks can be thought of as a sort of PG-13, TV version of Blue Velvet with the supernatural involved, and even some of the supernatural elements are more complicated and inscrutable than just "spirits / ghosts / demons did it" - the whole situation with the Tremonds, the nature of MIKE and LMFAP. To the extent that Episode 29 is an ending, it's not a very upbeat one - at the very least, it's a major setback for Cooper albeit not a final defeat.

FWWM leans more heavily into the supernatural, and into the more inscrutable aspects of it, and ends with Laura only really finding peace after death.

Lost Highway pretty much defies a naturalistic reading, and to the extent that we can tell what's really happening to Fred/Pete, he's clearly not in a good place at the end. I don't necessarily buy the idea that he's literally imagining all this while waiting to be executed and that the final scene represents him being electrocuted, but even so, he still seems to be locked into denial and revenge instead of owning up to what he's done.

The Straight Story admittedly doesn't fit this pattern, but given that he didn't write or co-write the screenplay and that it's based on a true story, that's perhaps to be expected.

Mulholland Drive also defies naturalistic interpretation and, like LH, doesn't supply an obvious supernatural presence to explain the more unusual twists either. We're just in a reality that doesn't work quite like ours (and IMO, trying to parse out exactly which scenes are "real" and which ones are "imagined" - whether by Betty/Diane or someone else - actually diminishes its effectiveness). Once again, the protagonist is in a very unpleasant place at the end, whether you think Betty/Diane really does shoot herself or not.

I haven't seen Inland Empire, though all these discussions have sent it back to the top of my to-do list. To the extent that TPTR can be placed alongside these other works, it's actually perhaps less pessimistic in its conclusion than MD or LH - Cooper is confused and perhaps struggling to maintain his sense of self, but he's alive, free from the Black Lodge and the catatonic/Dougie state, and presumably not ready to give up on whatever he's trying to accomplish. Laura's scream also doesn't have to represent the final word on her character. But it does end on a darker note than BV, WAH, or even FWWM in some ways.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby Ashok » Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:28 am

LostInTheMovies wrote:By the way OT it's a stretch but I've been trying to figure out - is your avi Lea Seydoux? Looks like someone but can't put my finger on it.


It's Anna Torv from Fringe and David Fincher's upcoming FBI drama Mindhunter.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby AXX°N N. » Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:24 am

God forbid anyone express despair. Have you seen the world? Have you felt the universe?

It's FWWM all over again. Showing cruelty does not make one cruel, showing meanness does not make one mean. There were plenty of scenes and characters demonstrating goodness and sweetness. Then they disappear in abstraction. That's life.

When Cooper feels despair, we're meant to sympathize. I sure wish when I felt despair, someone would sympathize with me, instead of trying to erase it in a saccharine fantasy.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby N. Needleman » Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:25 am

Ashok wrote:
LostInTheMovies wrote:By the way OT it's a stretch but I've been trying to figure out - is your avi Lea Seydoux? Looks like someone but can't put my finger on it.


It's Anna Torv from Fringe and David Fincher's upcoming FBI drama Mindhunter.


I was sure it was Naomi Watts!
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby RetconMetatron » Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:32 am

AXX°N N. wrote:God forbid anyone express despair. Have you seen the world? Have you felt the universe?

It's FWWM all over again. Showing cruelty does not make one cruel, showing meanness does not make one mean.


It was despair for no good reason though. It came across as if Cooper toasted the universe with his timetravel shenanigans because... he just felt like it.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby AXX°N N. » Fri Sep 08, 2017 11:39 am

RetconMetatron wrote:It was despair for no good reason though. It came across as if Cooper toasted the universe with his timetravel shenanigans because... he just felt like it.

Is there ever a good reason for despair? Despair arises because something we did not want to happen has happened, which happens all the time. I took the ending as him having reached a crucial moment where after following the non-logic of the lodge for 25 years, he was brought to his last clues and had no idea what to do; his intentions were good, but they didn't work out how he wanted, he transcended space and time to solve his case and did; this Laura was never murdered, but that didn't apparently solve everything, and, if anything, his purpose is more misguided than it was before he crossed. In taking away Laura's death, which was the one thing that defined his journey in a solid direction, he threw himself into confusion. I don't know exactly if you can reduce all of this to a single metaphor, but something about it certainly feels true to me.
Recipe not my own. In a coffee cup. 3 TBS flour, 2 TBS sugar, 1.5 TBS cocoa powder, .25 TSP baking powder, pinch of salt. 3 TBS milk, 1.5 TBS vegetable oil, 1 TBS peanut butter. Add and mix each set. Microwave 1 minute 10 seconds. The cup will be hot.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby Mr. Reindeer » Sat Sep 09, 2017 12:31 pm

LostInTheMovies wrote:
Mr. Reindeer wrote:
yaxomoxay wrote:
He started reading the daily newspaper.


Nah, he just started talking to Mark Frost more frequently. Which, if you've seen his Twitter feed, is the same as reading the paper.

I'm being glib, but I really do think there's a lot more of Mark in this season, for good or ill, than most people are giving credit for. I think we saw a lot of Mark's ideas and philosophy filtered through David's abstract lens.


Been wondering about this too. Do you have a post on here where you discuss it more in-depth? With all the activity on dugpa, I've found it hard to keep tabs on much here haha


I found a few minutes to dig in deeper and gave the topic its own thread, because I think it deserves it: viewtopic.php?f=29&t=3851&p=110412#p110412
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby LostInTheMovies » Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:53 pm

Been discussing similar topics on Twitter, and it strikes me that the question of if The Return is mean-spirited kind of hinges on whether or not Cooper's outcome is also Laura's. If we are following his character to this end, it's a sad but honest and logical outcome from the character's previous development. Perhaps he'll come to a greater understanding someday but like a more benign version of Fred Madison, he seems to keep making the same mistakes over and over in an inability to face his own shadow.

However, if we're supposed to read Carrie as not just a somewhat separate character with an element of Laura entangled within her (like a more supernatural version of Maddy), existing inside a non-exclusive reality that Cooper has created, then I think the ending becomes more problematic. Specifically, if we read Carrie and the Laura ripped out of the Lodge in Pt. 2 as a conclusive continuation of the Laura we glimpse at the end of FWWM - reducing her to an object again after her victory in FWWM and robbing her of the transcendence she finds with the angel (the former, in narrative terms, possibly even more brutal than the latter) - then I begin to find The Return incredibly cheap and cynical.

The problem with this as Laura's ending too is that it isn't reflective of anything except Lynch's own decision to drag her back into the story (emphasis on "drag"). As I've said elsewhere, it is entirely self-fulfilling self-criticism. FWWM's "This is how you humanize a character who was created as an object, her subjectivity only slowly discovered in the process of creation" is a hell of a different statement than Pt. 18's (as many read it) "This is how you harm a character you created by unnecessarily going back and changing her narrative, and by the way isn't it terrible that I am doing this-- er, that Cooper is doing this?"

Because Lynch has a long history of building upon rather taking away, and because it would seem quite out of character for him to undo a spiritual breakthrough, I find it hard to believe that this is what Lynch intended or that this is the most sensible interpretation fostered by the material. In my reading, both universes exist - certainly in a poetic sense and, if we want to press the matter, in-world as well (I'm not even convinced that Coop succeeded in preventing Laura's death in ANY universe though obviously Alice Tremond suggests an alt-outcome for at least one Palmer). In a way FWWM remains "beyond" The Return, a work that points back to it in many ways (as did The Missing Pieces). If I could be convinced otherwise, it would potentially reduce my opinion of the whole project quite a bit.
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby BGate » Fri Sep 22, 2017 4:17 am

LostInTheMovies wrote:
powerleftist wrote:
Poiuyt wrote:Inland Empire was a critical success.

http://www.metacritic.com/movie/inland-empire

It also grossed $4 million worldwide.


... which is nothing and makes it the 239th most successful film of 2006.


How many of those 238 films cost as little as Inland Empire? And the critical point is important as well, considering the mixed-to-hostile receptions Lynch films were getting in the 90s; it showed a turning point had been reached with his reputation, which the gushing praise for the new series confirms. I think Lynch may have been frustrated that film-funding for middle-range films was drying up in the past 10 years (though ofc IE shows he didn't need that to make a movie), but I don't think he had much reason to be bitter. In the autumn of his life and career, his public persona had reached a summit where he was no longer angrily contested but seemed to widely accepted as a kind of lovable, eccentric "Uncle David" who had carved out his own niche in pop culture. He also remarried and had a child in his sixties.

This is all one reason I find the "angry, bitter Lynch has lost his faith in the world and made this work to express his fury" readings a bit wild. In a sense, except for the late 80s (when Twin Peaks was first conceived) Lynch has never had it better.


This is the whole reason The Return exists. I was thinking about this when watching the MD Pilot the other week. That movie is *so* important to Lynch's current rep/status. Imagine what his career looks like without it. Like, let's say the pilot got picked up. My guess it would have lasted one season and been a commercial failure. Critically it may have been mixed (remember, this was really before the prestige era), probably looked back on now fondly by film enthusiasts as a kind of great "what if?". If the next 15 years are the same, and IE is his only major work, does Showtime, in 2014 or whatever, look at Lynch as someone they are willing to cut a huge check to and total creative carte blanche? You could argue at that point that he hadn't made a really impactful film in 30 years.

So I guess what I'm saying is, one of the people we should be most thankful to right now is the ABC exec who shitcanned Mulholland Drive :)
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Re: Season 3 was incredibly mean-spirited (spoilers)

Postby claaa7 » Fri Sep 22, 2017 6:31 am

from an interview with Lynch.. why would he not be able to answer that?

it feels really lazy that he couldn't prep to watch 30 episodes again. i guess they wanted to go in fresh and not be too bound by what came before.. like Fred Madison remembering things how they remember them, and not necessarily how they went

Did you watch the original seasons again?
No.

Why not?
This is ... You know, I can't answer that. Sorry [laughs].

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