The Great Twin Peaks Rewatch of ‘Eleven

First of all, let me say that I sincerely miss the Two-Thousand-Aughts, and that referring to the years of the second decade of this century is far less satisfying, and that I feel privileged to have lived through those special times.

Second of all, Alan Sepinwall and Dan Fienberg of* are doing this thing on their podcast, Firewall and Iceberg, where they conduct over the summer an official rewatch of an old show and discuss it each week. Last year they covered Undeclared and it was a lot of fun; this year they are tackling the first season of Twin Peaks.**

*You may know from such venues as the checkout line at Albertson’s, where tiny monitors run loops of entertainment news while you stand in line.

**And that’s some damn fine link bombing in the first paragraph, if I do say so myself.

Who Killed Laura Palmer?

Oh, Twin Peaks! I have memories of that show. Fond memories. (Maybe some are even true.) It aired right around the time when I was starting to have enough homework at night to keep me up late, and it wasn’t so weird for me to just be up instead of in bed during the racy hours of prime time. There was a TV upstairs in the master bedroom, above the sturdy oak armoire (remember all that sturdy oak that was so popular?), and we’d sit on the big bed and watch this thing. I think she’d started watching first because there were definitely some splainin sessions about the cherry pie and coffee and other character quirks. I don’t think we missed an episode, and I still remember who actually did kill Laura Palmer and how thrilling it was to finally get that answer. And then the show ended and I never did see the Firewalk with Me follow-up film, and I haven’t encountered it since and remembered barely enough of it to laugh knowingly at Lisa Simpson trying to help Chief Wiggum solve a crime in his dream.

Good times. Did I already say that? But they were.

Shockingly, there were copies available of the DVD set at the library (no waitlist!), so I started watching the pilot today. It’s a weird experience. Most of it rings no bells (although I did say that I came in a little late to the show, so I don’t know why the pilot would have), but the theme song is as soothingly electronicarific as I remembered (bong BUM… doo doo doo doo doo doo.. bong BUM), and then suddenly there’s Grace Zabriskie, who I never even recognized from this show when I was watching Big Love. And bam! The short-story-long switchboard operator at the sheriff station! And pow! Audrey’s saddle shoes! Which reminds me of Zap! That scene where she’s trying to get out of having sex with Mr. Palmer while working in a brothel under false pretenses for some reason while wearing a mask! Which is not in the pilot but which my mind flashed to. And then, huh. There’s that scene with the Parents Palmer talking on the phone about their missing daughter while the sheriff approaches the father and the mother can only hear about it through the phone while begging for information and then screaming with grief. You may remember that scene from such pilots as The Killing, which premiered a few months ago.

So, yeah, that. I am just repeating what everyone has been saying about The Killing since it started, but it really hit home for me after watching that scene with the telephone. I haven’t even gotten to the part where Agent Cooper shows up, but just thinking about it makes me hungry for pie.*

*Mmmmm… pie… Although I’d happily eat instead ramen noodles with only a little bit of the liquid left in and a touch of rice vinegar and a few tablespoons of peanut butter garnished with basil leaves if someone made it for me. But no one will.

I’ve tried my hand at the every-episode blogging thing with a few series now, and I don’t tend to make it past maybe 20 posts, so I’m not sure I’m going to write about every episode or even the remainder of the pilot, but it might be fun to try, especially knowing already who the killer is as events unfold and especially because I’ve been carefully trained on a curriculum of serialized TV programs over the past several years and want to see if I can apply my skills to something created before this crop of shows paved the way for such analytical viewing. If I pulled it off, I would also feel very, very smart and very, very cool. Not a lot of opportunity for that these days, and I don’t want to let any slide. After all, I’m going for a board position (now with votes!) for the elementary school PTA next year, and we all know how much time political machination and palm-greasing takes. Gather ye rosebuds and all that.

It’s going to be quite a summer.

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