Pages 29-36: Twin Peaks Flora
As the flora section begins, we get the margin bio of “sometimes naturalist” Dr. Jacoby on page 29. I assume they’re implying he’s a pot smoker, but they also share the lovely detail that surfaced on Jacoby’s trading card and later in Secret History: that his glasses’ colored lenses “balance the right and left sides of his brain.” I love that detail in so many different ways, and am so happy that’s always been part of his character.
I suspect the Flora and Fauna sections were mostly written by the Access Press writers, as we have some proof in reference to Sparkwood and Blue mountains as well as Lower Town, rather than White Tail, Blue Pine, and Low Town. All told though, they keep on the theme well enough, especially with the mention of people disappearing in the woods, not unlike the Major in Season 2 and the Log Lady in Secret History.
Page 30 is all about lilies, and its margin has detail about a Snoqualmie legend of the tribesman and the mountain lion that help each other and turn to lilies when they die. It makes me think of the “intercourse between worlds” the Arm spoke of in Fire Walk With Me. Beyond that, it’s fairly straightforward stuff.
For being a tongue-in-cheek version of plant journals, Access Guide makes sure to include a Twin Peaks touch on every page. Such as Margaret’s log on page 31.
Page 32 includes text about Douglas firs, and an illustration charting sizes of the various local trees which is right below a size comparison of the great horned owl and pygmy owl.
Page 33 has text on local trees, along with an illustration of leaves and a margin bio for the Log Lady. Margaret crediting Glastonberry Grove among her Bests is interesting. Did the writers know at the time about her jar of scorched engine oil?
Earlier, I noted how the only people who stay in the area don’t tire “of the thick, gloomy forests and the disturbing sounds of the owls,” and that the only reason they settled was beaver pelts. Here, we see it’s a theme: the beavers’ favorite food is the Quaking Aspen, known here as weak wood. Even the beavers who stayed in the area choose a food that doesn’t put up much of a fight.
Page 34 has text about different local moss, and illustrations of the moss. The margin describes a plant named Devil’s Club.
I’m not a fan of Gaston Leroux being playfully described as a pedophile for a joke just to go along with some comments about moss, but his diary being found near both Owl Cave and his bones is a story I want to hear. I’m again reminded of the Denver Bob portion of Secret History.
Next, page 35 gives us text filled with absurd humor about poison ivy, along with a margin bio for Deputy Hawk. The poison ivy goofiness is just that, making ridiculous claims about how to deal with it. I wonder if the writers leaned so far into it to balance out Hawk’s classy margin bio. I’m really glad only the Timber Games were mentioned in Hawk’s Bests list, rather than his stereotypical Timber Games specialty, Bury The Hatchet (Thanks again, 1991).
Page 36, the last page of the main Flora section, contains text about tanning hides, with margin illustration for types of spud tools.
Page 37: The Twin Peaks Flower: A Pine Cone
On this single page, we get text about the official Twin Peaks flower: a pine cone. A giant illustration of one takes up the bottom two-thirds of the page with a gorgeous etching of a pine cone. But yeah: a pine cone is not a flower. And Twin Peaks somehow adopts it as one anyway. I get it—absurd humor!
I think Andrew Packard would have a little less civic pride as a result of this being a real town fact, so I’m blaming this detail on the Access Press directive to “mirror the show and take it to an odder place.” But why the folks on the Twin Peaks side signed off on this too (it’s not that funny), I’ll never know.
Pages 38-40: Fauna
Page 38 includes text about a squirrel, skunk, and the pine weasel, with illustrations of them, along with a button for the Save Ghostwood movement in the margin. Is it wrong that I love all the pine weasel stuff?
It’s certainly fun to see the ferret by another name get its due, but get too focused on it and you’ll miss the nod to Rocky the flying squirrel. You’d think the writers would’ve thrown in a nod to Bullwinkle somewhere, but then there’s that classy White Moose legend in a few pages.
Page 39 gives us text about beaver, raccoon, mule deer, and the beginning of the taxidermy section, with margin illustrations of bear tracks and claws. On page 40 we get rather graphic illustrated steps for taxidermy, as well as the beginning of the white moose legend.
Pages 40-41: The White Moose
The sad legend of the white moose concludes on page 41. A negative image of a moose is at the bottom of the page. Moose track illustrations are in the margin, and an incongruous ad for the Bell Club Lodge is placed in the corner.
Legend tells us the white moose appears on moonlit nights as a ghost. It’s mentioned in many characters’ written accounts but only Dominick Renault has claimed to see it, which makes sense assuming his dark path. Legend has it the moose was the lone survivor of 50 moose that were exterminated by the several dozen trappers that trapped them. Now, “drained of his brothers’ and sisters’ blood, the White Moose appears to those in trouble because it understands the agony of sorrow and despair.”
There’s a lot in the legend of the White Moose. As Lodge denizens seem to take different shapes depending on who’s observing them—say the Land of Bloon to Unguin Packard and owls to Dominick Renault—I wouldn’t be shocked if that meant the White Moose and White Horse weren’t one and the same.
I love that the “melancholy and forgiving” White Moose “appears to those in trouble because it understands the agony of sorrow and despair.” Was the horse—at least during the days of Twin Peaks’ original production—less a drug metaphor and more a witness to validate and understand someone’s pain?
I now want to go through every scene the horse is in and decide whether it could be a presence of compassion much like Carl Rodd was for the unnamed mother in Season 3.
Page 42: Owls Club
This page begins with a paragraph about the Owls Club, which is described very much like an Elks Club, except here the elks are mounted on the wall.
I want the Owls Club to mean something, but I suspect this was another of those moments where Wurman and his Access Press team tried to “mirror the show and take it to an odder place.” Below the text of this under-explained group is an illustration of a properly pinned and mounted elk head.
Page 43: Antlers
This page literally describes the process of growing antlers, dropping antlers, and needing to repair your antlers. It reminds me of the head that “fell off” in the bank scene of the Pilot. Otherwise, I only note that the illustration of different antler types was well done.
Page 44: Birds
Page 44’s descriptions of the Yellow-Rumped Warbler, Common Crow, and Turkey Vulture (the last is pictured largely on the page’s bottom half) were almost written like dating profiles, which I found charming.
But it was the details on the Great Horned Owl’s harmonizing that are a winner. In reference to “in concert, they often harmonize in perfect thirds, though around Twin Peaks diminished sevenths are heard.” Em, host of the Sparkwood & 21 Podcast, had this to share:
Schoenberg had written about the diminished 7th: whenever one wanted to express pain, excitement, anger, or some other strong feeling, there we find—and almost exclusively—the diminished 7th chord.
She and her co-host Steve had no problem believing that owls from Twin Peaks could and would convey different emotions than normal owls.
Page 45: Creation of the Owl
We next get a fable in one page about a daughter being convinced by her mother to fly away as an owl, and then the mother takes her daughter’s skin to eat their food and sleep with her son-in-law. The daughter tells him what’s happening, he ends up killing the mother, and he also has to leave his skin as it was the only way to be with his wife again.
Based on this tale of the owl’s creation, I can’t see it any other way than being yet another Lodgespace interaction under a different name like the Land of Bloon.
- A mother negatively coerces her daughter to become part of the woods.
- The mother is killed for her hubris.
- The daughter’s rescuer has to enter the Lodge for any hope of being with her. And they can’t get out unscathed.
Sounds like we heard a variation of the first point with Laura Palmer’s story, the second with Leland’s story after he kills Maddy, and the last point in Episode 29 with Cooper and Annie. Can you see it, too?
Even the scientifically-grounded margin details about the bird seem to make connections between the Great Horned Owl and Lodge denizens:
- Seeing in total darkness fits well—especially when considering one Lodge over the other.
- Then there’s triangulating sound collected on the feathery disks—one could call them circles—in front of their eyes. It’s almost like they see sound. And we’ve seen already that the Access Guide values the importance of sound frequencies.
Pages 46-47: Owlwise By Firelight
The background to this two-page spread is this final moment from the end of Episode 16:
The overlayed words are poetic, describing the outdoors at night by firelight, followed by the appearance of an owl, then its mate, and their sounds of a perfect thirds chord. The writer is certain the owls know what the people do not, and the passage ends with a thought that the owl’s wings will one day engulf them and tell them things they want to know as well as the things they don’t.
Riding on the coattails of page 45’s legend, this section could be the thesis statement of Twin Peaks Season 2. Possibly even Twin Peaks as a whole.
Finding a mate allows for harmonizing in perfect thirds. That makes love the key to creating a harmonically balanced chord. A diminished 7th comes from dread, an aspect of fear. Love vs. Fear is the major theme of Season 2, most notably in how those two emotions are the keys to open the door between worlds.
“Not dread but a connection with our past is what we feel” implies so much that I can’t quite articulate. But I can say what this literally says. Connections and the understanding of how you got to your present are positive forces, the opposite of dread. Therefore they are adjacent to love.
Pages 48-53: Pete Martell: Landing That Big One
Page 48 is devoted entirely to a black and white version of a poster titled “Trout, Salmon, and Char of North America.” 36 fish in three rows. And the page tells us we can buy the poster on page 112.
You absolutely can not order that poster on page 112 like the caption says—though you can on page 111—but you can guarantee one these local fish made their way into at least one percolator.
Over the next four pages, we get Pete Martell—not Ben Horne, who also lays claim on catching that 45-inch sockeye on display at the Great Northern—writing us a classic yarn of a fish story.
Make sure to note a few things in Pete’s page 49 margin bio:
- He’s certainly a chess man, preferring chess over the checkers he preferred in The Secret History of Twin Peaks.
- He counts the Passion Play among his bests. Keep track of that for later.
- He mentions the Green Butt Skunk, which is Harry Truman’s going away present to Dale in Episode 17. This tells me Pete taught Harry everything he knows about fishing.
A large illustration of sockeye salmon spreads across the top of pages 50 and 51. Margin notes contain background info on salmon, and the main text is part of Pete’s fishing advice. Then Pete’s story concludes on the next page with a list of eccentric items in Pete’s tackle box. An illustration of chinook salmon spreads across the bottom half of pages 52 and 53.
Pete includes his list of tackle box contents following the end of his story. I enjoy that he was either too scatterbrained or too excited to fill in spots 27 — 30. Did he lose them when he spilled its contents out and can’t remember what they were?
The section concludes with a pictorial list of lures on page 53. Two particularly Twin Peaks-esque items stand out:
- The previously mentioned green butt skunk is the second row from the top, all the way on the left.
- On the top right corner is an Annie. Is this a subtle way to make a joke about how the writers intended Annie Blackburn to be nothing more than a lure for Dale Cooper to enter the Black Lodge at the end of the season? If this was an easter egg, it’s a slick way to put it out there.