What a strange detour into absurdist madness we took with this week’s episode! Some of the main story threads took a breather and instead we were handed a variety of engrossing tangential stories that may or may not have impact on the overall storyline. But Audrey’s back! Or is she? It’s one of the most entertaining episodes of the return! Let’s rock!
INSIDE THE X FILES: Gordon, Tammy, and Albert drink red wine in some sort of private room that may be a secret FBI hangout spot but which also eerily resembles the Lodge with the distinctive red curtains. Albert gives us a huge info dump about Project Blue Book morphing into the Blue Rose Task Force. Members of this elite squad: Phillip Jeffries, Chet Desmond, Dale Cooper, and our man Albert himself. Albert notes that he is the only member of the club who hasn’t mysteriously disappeared off the face of the earth, then asks Tammy to join. She agrees, a toast is made, there is much reserved rejoicing (is there such a thing as ‘reserved rejoicing’? If there is, they were doing it). Diane arrives as if on schedule and immediately starts drinking (big surprise there). Gordon tells her that he is deputizing her so she can assist in their mission to capture Bad Cooper. Later on, Diane sits at the bar and receives a text asking her about Las Vegas, to which she replies ‘They haven’t asked yet’. Yeah, your guess is as good as mine on what that all means. It has to be some reference to Dougie, right? She types the coordinates from Ruth Davenport’s arm into her phone and guess where it leads? TWIN PEAKS, WASHINGTON, BABY! Last week in my review, I expressed disappointment when Albert said the coordinates led to a small town in New York. But it turns out I was right all along (I love when that happens), this journey is going to end in Twin Peaks, after all. How was Albert so wrong? Maybe he was purposely reciting misleading information so as to not let Diane into the loop.
In Gordon’s hotel room, he entertains and cuddles up with a strikingly beautiful young French woman. Oh that we all could be 70 years old and command such attention from a gorgeous 30-something! Albert arrives and tells Gordon that he must speak to him alone, so Gordon politely asks his lady friend for some privacy. Now here is the difference between Twin Peaks and every other show on television: This is the part where the woman quickly leaves the room and we get down to police business — but not on a David Lynch television show. Instead we are treated to an extended scene where the woman drapes her shawl around her shoulders, puts on her shoes, checks her makeup in her compact mirror, applies lipstick, sips her wine, seductively walks to the door, shares some little kisses and canoodling with Gordon, then finally makes a prolonged, grand exit from the room while flirtatiously motioning with her hand. The entire production of this woman leaving the room takes about 4 minutes of screen time. The first time I watched this, I found myself getting irritated that she was taking her good old time to get out of there. Then somewhere in the midst of it all, I broke out in hysterical laughter and even missed some of Gordon’s dialogue afterwards because I was laughing so hard. I actually applauded at my tv screen. What a brilliant scene! If you thought this was all just an unnecessary waste of time, sorry but you probably shouldn’t even be watching the show. SIDE NOTE: I am going to attempt to exit a room in this way someday and I will let you know how it goes. I probably won’t be nearly as alluring and everyone in the room will just ignore me until I shuffle out the door. Once they are alone, Gordon talks about the French woman being in town to be there for a friend of her mother whose daughter has disappeared. Does this have any relevance at all? Probably not, but it’s fun to imagine that it might. Is it about the turnip farm? No, it is NOT about the turnip farm. Albert tells Gordon about the text message that Diane received concerning Las Vegas and they wonder what the hell it means. That makes three of us now.
THE BITCH IS BACK: Ok, she wasn’t a bitch when we last saw her, but Miss Audrey Horne seems to have become a bit foul-mouthed and caustic in her middle age. She is now married to a bizarre, bookish dude named Charlie, although it is hinted that their marriage is some sort of business contract and not one of the loving variety. Audrey is desperate to go to the Roadhouse to find this guy Billy who she has been having an affair with. Billy’s been missing for two days and according to Chuck, the last person to see Billy was Tina, a person that Audrey hates. I feel like we have stepped into an Audrey spinoff show, because I don’t know any of these damn people. All of this cryptic drama involving characters we know nothing about reminds me of Catherine Coulson writing her letter in Lynch’s short film ‘The Amputee’. If you haven’t seen it yet, PLEASE check it out. I find The Amputee endlessly entertaining, but then I’M WEIRD. Charlie decides to call Tina to try to get some information for his distressed wife. As Audrey waits and listens with baited breath, Charlie receives ‘unbelievable’ news from Tina, presumably about Billy. He ends the phone call and just stares at Audrey, obviously not about to give her any insight into the phone call at all. Audrey is in angry disbelief and shouts ‘You’re not going to tell me what she said?!’ No he’s not, and we viewers are left hanging as to what this is all about.
A few episodes back, a man ran into the RR Diner asking if anyone had seen Billy. It would make sense that this was the same Billy that Audrey is looking for. I mean, what are the chances that two separate characters named Billy go missing in the same TV series? UNLIKELY. Charlie mentions something about Billy’s truck being stolen recently. Could this connect back to the guy who told Andy that his truck was stolen and then disappeared before their scheduled meeting later that day? If that guy was Billy, then our Miss Horne has developed an attraction to a redneck dude who looks like he belongs in a Rob Zombie movie. But love is blind, right?
OH BUT WAIT, BACK IN SOUTH DAKOTA: Chantel The Slut and her accomplice Hutch (previously from The Farm) stake out Warden Murphy’s house. The warden arrives home and is promptly shot and killed by Hutch. The warden’s young son walks outside to find his father laying dead in front of the porch. Yeah, the warden was a dick but it’s still so heartbreaking to watch a boy lose his dad this way. Chantel and Hutch aren’t nearly as heartbroken over this as I was, and they speed off to get Baconators at Wendy’s. REALLY, WENDY’S? I know that after I murder someone, I like to treat myself to authentic Mexican food. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.
TAKE ME OUT TO THE BALLGAME: Just to remind the audience that Kyle MacLachlan is still in the show, we get a 10 second scene of Dougie playing catch with Sonny Jim. Well it’s not quite catch because Sonny Jim throws the baseball at his father and it just bounces off his shoulder but really, what did the boy expect from his dad by this point? Somehow I don’t believe that the original Dougie Jones would have made the trek into the backyard to even ATTEMPT to play catch with his son, so this new zombified Dougie/Cooper is actually an improvement as a parent.
ORDINARY PEOPLE?: Sarah Palmer is at the grocery store, stocking up on vodka and Bloody Mary mix (I have a strong feeling that this is a regular occurrence for her). When she gets to the checkout counter, she becomes disturbed by the appearance of beef and turkey jerky behind the cash register (I’m sure we all can relate). This jerky-related freak-out develops into a full-blown flip-out and she starts spouting cryptic warnings to the cashier that ‘men are coming!’ and ‘things can happen, something happened to me!’ Then she attempts to control her outburst by talking to herself in the third person, which is never really a good idea when you’re out in public. She tells herself to just get in her car and leave, and that’s what she does. Later on, Hawk stops by her house to check up on her, having heard about her supermarket incident. As he talks to her in the doorway to her home, he hears a rattling noise coming from inside but she just dismisses it as ‘something in the kitchen’. Hmmmm….
Sheriff Truman stops by the Great Northern Hotel to inform Ben that his grandson Richard is a child murdering psychopath, which Ben should already have kind of assumed. Ben gives Truman the key to Cooper’s hotel room, saying how it mysteriously arrived in the mail recently. Truman is convinced that the appearance of the key coming at the same time as the investigation into Cooper’s disappearance is more than just a coincidence. Truman leaves, and Ben tells Beverly to make sure that Miriam’s hospital bills are paid for. Then he reminisces about a green bicycle he received as a boy as a gift from his father. This all leads back to Richard, as Ben’s story suggests that the presence of a caring father can make a huge difference in a boy’s life. Richard didn’t have a father. SO WHO IS RICHARD’S FATHER? It’s looking more and more that it may be Bad Cooper after all.
ELSEWHERE IN TOWN: Miriam lays in the hospital in intensive care. Jerry Horne finally gets out of the woods, running like his life depends on it. Jacoby is still doing his angry Internet broadcasts, and Nadine is still entranced by them. Carl Rodd finds out that one of his tenants is selling his own blood to pay the bills, so he lets the guy’s rent slide for a month. As the episode draws to a close, two women we’ve never seen before sit at the Roadhouse and discuss the romantic entanglements of their friend Angela. Some dude named Trick interrupts them to inform them of a car accident he was just in, then he quickly takes off and we are treated to The Chromatics again as the credits roll.
We hardly saw Agent Cooper at all in this episode (the bad one OR the Dougie version). The plot didn’t seem to advance much. What we got were mostly small slices of life from the fringe of our main story. But you know what, I loved it. Easily one of the most satisfying installments yet. However we only have six hours left to wrap up this sprawling mystery, so I’m sort of hoping that we get back to the real action soon.
MORE THINGS THAT HAPPENED:
— I got chills seeing the police car pulling up in front of the Palmer house. Not to mention the shot of the ceiling fan inside, forever ominously whirring and humming. As different as the new series is from the old one, some things never change.
— Audrey’s reason for cheating on her husband with Billy: Charlie has no balls (I’m assuming she meant this in a figurative sense) and he’s a milquetoast. Points given to Audrey for using the word ‘milquetoast’ on national television.
— I’m starting to dislike Dr. Jacoby. His Internet show consists of him yelling the entire time, making vague, blanket statements about the government. This is entertaining to people? I could take about two minutes of this show, then I’d just switch it off.
— I love how from one scene to the next, we never know where we are going to end up in the Twin Peaks universe, or how long we are going to stay there. One second it’s Jacoby and then all of a sudden Audrey is standing there, plain as day. We spend all of ten seconds in Las Vegas with Dougie then that’s all we see of him for the rest of the episode. I’ve never anticipated the next scene as much as I do when this show is on.
— Richard Horne may be one of the most despicable villains of all time. He runs down a child and then beats a nursery school teacher to near-death? Add to that the physical assault on his grandmother and it can’t get much worse than that. Next episode: Richard beats a Carmelite nun to death with a pool cue.
I will be heading back into the woods for a week, only coming out to watch the next episode on Sunday. I will be surviving on huckleberry extract and donuts. Hang loose, Haoles, see you again soon!