TP Countdown Day 3: The Path to the Black Lodge

I’ll admit, I’ve been kind of hard on these last few episodes – maybe even harder than I was on the dreadful midseason ones. That’s partly because so many of the plots that are going on as the series draws to its season to close pertain to things that really won’t mean anything to the upcoming return of Twin Peaks, which can make sitting through some of it kind of a pain in the ass.

But I’ve got to give it to this episode. More than anything since maybe Maddie’s death, this episode feels like a real episode of Twin Peaks. Even though Lynch himself isn’t behind the camera, it sure feels like this was an episode that was touched by him. 

There’s a fantastic scene about halfway through where Cooper and Annie talk at the diner. It’s general flirtatious chitchat, but the way it’s shot, and the way it’s scored, gives it such a a feeling of dread. It’s such a simple scene, and based on the dialogue, it should be light and cheery, but it’s not. Instead, it’s doing some hella foreshadowing, and it’s great.

This is’t the only dark moment the two share. Later in the episode, Coop takes Annie dancing, and while the elderly Mayor Milford struggles endlessly with his microphone (old people taking way too long to accomplish simple tasks being another favorite image of Lynch’s), Coop suddenly has a vision of the giant, waving his arms and shaking his head, sending a very strong message to Coop: No.

What could this message be about? Well, maybe the fact that only moments before Cooper had suggested Annie should enter the Miss Twin Peaks contest. I get the feeling from both those scenes that something very bad may be about to happen to Miss Annie Blackburn.

And while we’re talking about Lynchian moments, how about that shaking hand?

At a number of different points in tonight’s episode, varying characters are afflicted by a strange shake in their right hands. First a random woman at the diner, the Cooper, and finally Pete Martell. Just as we think we might not get an answer to this mystery, we find ourselves at a circle of rocks in the forest. As a bright light flares up, we see BOB’s hand emerging from the shadows, shaking much like the hands of those earlier in the episode.

Okay, maybe this doesn’t exactly provide a literal explanation for the shaking hands, but if you’re looking for literal anything, you should probably stay away from Twin Peaks. Instead what is clear is that those shaking hands were evidence of BOB struggling to get into the world again.

Although maybe BOB is just getting ready to welcome Windom Earle into the Black Lodge, as it seems he’s on the verge of finally figuring out how to get inside. It would seem that the Owl Cave Petroglyph is not only indicating the right time to enter – when Jupiter and Saturn align – but is also a map showing the right where to enter, something which Cooper has apparently not figured out yet. Come on, Coop, you can keep up with this madman.

Oh, and speaking of Windom’s “madness” I can say I’ve grown pretty tired of “crazy” being defined almost entirely by “laughs way too goddamn much.”

By episode’s end, Major Briggs has been kidnapped by Earle, and it’s not looking good for either him or Leo, as they’re both writhing on the floor in some kind of seizure state, likely drug-induced. 

Less interesting news? Catherine gets the next level of her puzzle box open, only to find another level of the puzzle box. Audrey gets laid by John Justice Wheeler before he takes off to Brazil. Pete takes Audrey fishing. Donna’s dad is totally Ben Horne, even though Donna can’t seem to figure that out. And Bobby finally admits that he’s been kind of a Jerky McJerkypants lately, but it’s too late to erase my head canon that Shelly eventually falls madly in love with Gordon Cole. Bye Bobby!

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