With Episode 6, Twin Peaks proves that even though you may not know where it’s going, it can still give you an emotional reaction whether that’s humour, horror, or grief, and you got all three in this week’s edition. I don’t know if this new Twin Peaks is David Lynch dumping every idea he’s had for the last 27 years into one narrative, or whether he’s punking TV recappers and fans that like to turn over every rock on set for every little clue, but I do know that the developments on this week’s episode had me hypnotically transfixed from one hilarious moment to the next utterly shocking moment.
On the lighter side was the ongoing adventures of Dale Cooper in the life of Dougie Jones. Picking up where we left him last week, Cooper was still poking at the cowboy statue and pantomiming that his left hand were missing. Perhaps he was sensing an incoming communique from Phillip Gerard in the red room. “You have to wake up,” the One-Armed Man told him. “Don’t die.” Solid advice, but there’s no sign that Cooper was taking advantage of it. On the other hand, Cooper did trade Dougie’s lime green sport coat and khakis for his crisp, tailored black suit. So there’s progress, I guess.
Thankfully, people actually started to address the odd way that Cooper as Dougie acted this week, starting with the police officer that ended up taking Cooper home. Soon, Dougie’s wife Janey-E suggests they make an appointment with Dr. Ben, and his boss Bushnell Mullins also makes the suggestion to seek professional help. I saw somebody on Twitter mention that this was some sort of commentary about the way people treat those with a mental illness, which I would buy if not for the fact that Dougie was a functioning, though pathetic, person one day, and the next he had to be led by the arm to the bathroom.
Janey-E got preoccupied with real Dougie’s dalliances, so there was no trip to the doctor this week. Dougie’s creditors leave an envelope at the Jones home with a picture of Dougie and his prostitute friend Jade, which opened, what seemed like, some very real wounds for Janey-E. Let’s just say that Dougie isn’t the loving husband and father he should be, betting on football on the side and racking up some impressive debts that white trash Jeremy Davies and friend have to collect on. Naomi Watts was awesome in that scene dealing with Dougie’s extorters, a soccer mom you don’t want to mess with even though her overblown reaction makes it make it feel like she’s the star of her own personal soap opera. I wonder if the life of the Joneses is the revival’s version of Invitation to Love, the soap within the show on the original run of the series?
As for our old friend Dougie, I mean Cooper, despite his social dysfunction, Cooper hits another hole-in-one proving to Bushnell that Tony, Dougie’s friend at Lucky 7 Insurance, has been involved in some kind of insurance fraud which has now been proven due to Cooper’s due diligence, and by “due diligence”, I mean drawing stick men, ladders and stairs on the insurance company paperwork as directed by little points of light that appear on the page that only Cooper can see. You know, like the spectral flame that appeared over the slot machines that pay out at the casino.
Unfortunately for the Joneses, their troubles aren’t over. The police have found Dougie’s blown up car, which is going to open up a whole new can of worms, but at least the police will just come to Dougie’s door with questions. We once again see Patrick Fischler as Duncan Todd, who gets a red square on his computer screen, which prompts him to get out an envelope that’s delivered to Ike “The Spike” Stadtler. Inside were two pictures of people Spike is supposed to kill, the first is a woman he gorily chisels to bits with his ice pick, and the second picture is of our old friend Dougie. Spike may need some time before getting to Dougie though as he bent what is probably his favourite ice pick to murder with while dispatching a witness off screen.
But perhaps there is some relief coming for Cooper. Albert makes contact with who we presume is the Blue Rose, and it’s none other than Cooper’s beloved assistant and confidant Diane Evans played by Lynch repertory player Laura Dern. It would make sense that Diane might be the key to sorting some of this out, perhaps no one is more familiar with the inner workings of Dale Cooper who dedicated what must have been several hundred hours of audio tape with his notes, requests and streams of consciousness. It seems likely that she will see through the facade of Bob/Cooper, but will she also be able to help the real Dale Cooper?
Back in the town of Twin Peaks itself, it was the place where unimaginable grief was suffered as a boy was killed in what is possibly the most disturbing and guttural hit-and-run I’ve ever seen put to film. The bare bones grief of the mother, who was just a few seconds earlier playing and laughing with her son, is uncomfortably raw, and I’ve tried to look up the name of the actress that played the mother to give her full credit, but since Twin Peaks exists under a veil of secrecy so thick the NSA couldn’t penetrate, I’ll give credit to Harry Dean Stanton. Stanton returns as Carl, another character introduced in Fire Walk With Me, is used with such incredible pathos here as the only person who dares try to comfort the mother.
As for the man that killed a child and flat out runs away, the author of such moral cowardice of course is none other than the same smoker seen at the end of last week’s episode, who has since been identified as Richard Horne (Eamon Farren). His connection to the well-connected Hornes has not been established; he could be a son of Ben’s, who we know liked to play the field, but it’s the more likely that Richard is Audrey’s son. Why? After meeting Shelly’s daughter Becky last week it might be that history in Twin Peaks is repeating itself. You have Shelly’s daughter making poor choices in husbands, and now we see a Horne is up to his neck in criminality.
Like his (grand)father, Richard is getting involved in a drug trade with a sketchy character named Red played by Balthazar Getty, another Lynch player (Lost Highway). Red wants to bring drugs into Twin Peaks over the Canadian border, a scheme very reminiscent of Leo Johnson, Ben Horne and the Renault Brothers back in the original series. Of course, Richard has a huge chip on his shoulder though, taking great maddening exception to Red calling him “Kid” and toying with him using a magic coin. The enraged Richard starts driving erratically, which results in him killing the boy, and naturally his first move is to wipe the evidence off his truck. But given that Richard already has inroad with the police, namely Deputy Chad, does Richard have much in the way of immediate justice to worry about?
Speaking of Twin Peaks’ finest, Chad doesn’t acquit himself well mocking Doris Truman and her very loud concerns about her father’s car. Another Deputy points out that Chad should shut up, for the Truman’s themselves lost a child, who it’s implied took his own life out of an inability to deal with his PTSD from his time as a soldier. While there was time for personal revelation, Deputy Hawk finally makes a break in his case when he notes the door of a stall in the men’s room features a company logo of an Aboriginal man with a head dress. Was it really that simple? As a matter of fact it was as Hawk tears apart the door and discovers several rolled up hand written pages. Are these the long missing pages of Laura Palmer’s diary, and if so how did they get into the men’s room at the sheriff’s office? Answers for another day…