One-Eyed Jacks: A Twin Peaks Analysis

The following is a guest post from Serge Braverman ( Be sure to tweet Serge and let him know what you think! Hope you enjoy.

PREFACE: I recently had the privilege of meeting Deputy Hawk himself, Michael Horse, and his wife, Pennie Opal Plant, at a Twin Peaks wrap party they threw for the public in San Francisco. They are two of the nicest, most welcoming people I have ever met. They made dinner for the thirty or so attendees, and taught us about causes they stand up for, such as Soil Not Oil ( and the Civil Rights Movement birthed in the 1960s continuing through today. We also learned about the close-knit nature of the Lynch circle of artists, who are a lot more like family than colleagues, which suffered a number of tragic losses around 2016, such as David Bowie, Miguel Ferrer, Harry Dean Stanton, and Catherine E. Coulson. Most definitely this real-life impact is on display in Twin Peaks: The Return, which seems as much for those who were lost and their loved ones as it is for us. This also lends itself to a possible explanation of what the “Jowday” means. In Chinese, jiào dé means to turn over, tell, or explain. I believe the real jiào dé may be something from David Lynch’s life, finally confessed to his friends before they died.


INTRODUCTION: David Lynch and Mark Frost’s Twin Peaks: The Return is a monumental achievement in film making. The narrative forms a five-dimensional Rubik’s Cube that is sometimes funny, sometimes sad, often terrifying, and always chilling. Picking up where we left off after Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me, the viewer, along with Agent Cooper, are taken out of what lies from “Beyond Life and Death” within the first two episodes, into the vast expanses of human imagination and consciousness. More than in any of his other works, David Lynch turns the lense of his mind inward, giving us an unprecedented glimpse into his creative process and the imagery and history of his real life, both within his family / circle of friends as well as the political stage of the 1960’s until now, which feed his muses. Lynch himself has said, “If you want a message, go to Western Union.” He offers us no easy answers, and he does not consciously inject themes, but they do emerge nonetheless. As in works like Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, a lot of the storytelling is strictly visual. Because of this, much of the evidence presented in this analysis will be graphical, taken from both the world of Twin Peaks and from United States history. Other evidence will include historical facts and direct quotes.




  1. Direct quote: President Harry S Truman about J Edgar Hoover: “…we want no Gestapo or secret police. The FBI is tending in that direction. They are dabbling in sex-life scandals and plain blackmail. J. Edgar Hoover would give his right eye to take over, and all congressmen and senators are afraid of him.” See the attached photo of John Edgar Hoover, with what appears to be a lazy right eye (one-eyed Jack). Also note the reflection of the tie clip in the table, which resembles the owl ring. Also note Lynch facing the camera as Gordon Cole, breaking the fourth wall as if he were posing for a photograph, albeit as a mirror image (note the eyebrows).




  1. Power Pole Number 6 and other numbers — the significance of the larger Number 6 on the power pole in a biblical sense being the works of man. 15 (seen over the electric socket in Part 3) is Man’s number for God. 88 (which appears in Laura’s Journal and Doctor Hayward’s gloves) being large and small infinite domains, an image co-opted by the Nazis in the form of their swastika, and 10 being Divine Completion (or Armageddon). The smaller numbers on the Electric Pole: 32|48|10 … three days, two nuclear bombs | swastika (mass murder committed by the US) | nuclear armageddon. Enola Gay’s (the plane that dropped the bombs) Victor Number on the nose cone was explicitly changed to 82. This seems a reference to both two 8’s (also used by the SS and Nazis) and the number 10. Also in TP are Japanese internment themes and stereotyping of Japanese Americans. “Blue Rose” may be a reference to Tokyo Rose and Iva Toguri D’Aquino being investigated for treason by Hoover’s FBI. See attached record cover.

    The ground crew of the B-29 “Enola Gay” which atom-bombed Hiroshima, Japan. Col. Paul W. Tibbets, the pilot is the center. Marianas Islands. (U.S. Air Force photo)


  1. FBI Robbery took place in Philadelphia in 1971 by members the Camden 28 This robbery revealed illegal surveillance on the part of Hoover’s FBI on Civil Rights leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr. The robbers also recorded Hoover discussing his illegal surveillance tactics. Eight robbers have come forward, and have indicated that there was a ninth member of the team who ended up not participating. In Twin Peaks: The Return, FBI headquarters were relocated to Philadelphia. This, combined with Dennis/Denise indicates a nod to the FBI robbery. Also, “Man in Columbia” and “Battling Bushnell” might be references to G Gordon Liddy, George Gordon Battle Liddy, who was recruited to the FBI by J Edgar Hoover (think Bushnell binoculars).  The recurrence of the letter “G” appears in The Alphabet (1968), Lost Highway (1997), and in part three of The Return over the exit sign to the Silver Mustang casino. Liddy was named after Tammany Hall (aka Columbian Order) attorney George Gordon Battle. The Tammany Hall Auditorium bears a resemblance to the theater inhabited by The Fireman and Senorita Dido and there may be some inspiration there.


  1. Tulpas vs. Doppelgängers. Doppelgängers are dark reflections of the fictional characters in the multiverse of Twin Peaks. Tulpas are entities created from outside of that multiverse, birthed by David Lynch’s muses, the Fireman and Senorita Dido, and deposited in fictional worlds using the creative machinery of the authors’ imaginations. Mr. C took partial control of this during the authors’ 25 year hiatus, which is how he was able to have a Diane Evans tulpa created via remote control in Argentina. Mr. C tried to take full control of it in  Part 17, but was trapped by The Fireman and Major Briggs, and sent exactly where he didn’t want to go, face-to-face with Agent Cooper. On a side note, the Fireman and Senorita Dido, along with their “house” for lack of a better word, may be in some form David Lynch’s parents, Fire Tower Fireman (Hellooooo!) and USDA scientist Donald Walton Lynch and Edwina Lynch (is that where the name Big Ed came from?), and some of the Tulpas may be a way for actual artists to enter the film:

    1. Dougie Jones (before being taken over by Coop): inspired by David Lynch in the early 1970s. The name might also be a nod to Duncan Jones, David Bowie’s filmmaker son and director of Moon. Also, Lynch himself has said that the statue Dougie looks at outside of his office is there for his late father, implying a connection between Dougie and Lynch:

    2. Janey-E Jones: named for Catherine E Coulson.

    3. The Roadhouse bands, who look and sound like real bands, but have alternate names, like “The” Nine Inch Nails.


  1. Speculation on Jowday, or jiào dé. In Chinese, jiào dé means to turn over, tell, or explain. I believe two conversations between Albert and Gordon mirror actual conversations that took place between David Lynch and Miguel Ferrer. The “Man in Columbia” conversation is based on Miguel Ferrer telling his close friend David Lynch about his terminal illness (Lynch saying “Albert…….Albert” may have really happened). The jiào dé monolog from Lynch could mirror an actual confession made from Lynch to Ferrer and/or his other dying friends. The following facts align:

    1. David Lynch lived in Philadelphia from 1966 to 1970, moving in 1971, the year of the FBI robbery.

    2. The FBI investigation was closed in late 1976 after the statute of limitations ran out.

    3. David Lynch released Eraserhead in 1977, just after the investigation was closed. The name “Eraserhead” could also have a double meaning to a tape recorder’s eraser head, used by Nixon (link: G Gordon Liddy, also could that connect to “Richard and Linda?”) to erase Watergate tapes. Dale Cooper talking into tape recorder might be a reference to the FBI being recorded clandestinely.


CONCLUSION: David Lynch’s real jiào dé might be finally confessing to being the would be ninth “Camden 28” FBI robber to his dying friends. The themes of Twin Peaks, Lynch’s whereabouts and political leanings of him and his friends could possibly point towards this, but even if this were the case, he has probably given us all of the information we will ever get on the matter.

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Written by Andrew Grevas

Andrew is the Founder / Editor in Chief of 25YL. He’s engaged with 2 sons, a staunch defender of the series finales for both Lost & The Sopranos and watched Twin Peaks at the age of 5 during its original run, which explains a lot about his personality.

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