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'Twin Peaks: The Return' brings fans on walk down memory lane

Ashanti Permatasari
Ashanti Permatasari

Enjoys being overwhelmed by films, stories, and cinema

Melbourne | Fri, July 28, 2017 | 10:30 am
'Twin Peaks: The Return' brings fans on walk down memory lane

'Twin Peaks' is designed to be felt at the moment and puts you in the moment. (Showtime/File)

I have re-ignited my obsession with Twin Peaks, an American TV series created by David Lynch and Mark Frost, which originally aired in 1990 and 1991, about the mysteries surrounding an investigation headed by Special Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) of the FBI into the murder of a popular high school girl named Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee).

Although the viewer ratings declined through the second season as a result of schedule changes, Twin Peaks created a cult-following fan base – the Twin Peaks Festival has taken place annually in the United States since 1992 -- and it has become a part of popular culture as it is often referenced in other television series, films, songs and books. At the time of the screening, Twin Peaks brought the crime, drama and mystery genres to a whole new level, or should I say, a new world.

As we go deep into the woods of Twin Peaks, which are melodramatic, surreal, funny or plain bizarre, it is hard not to get attached to the characters and their antics. Especially, after we were left with one of the biggest cliffhangers in the history of TV, David Lynch then decided to let us wait for 25 years – a very long build up and time to anticipate Twin Peaks: The Return.

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To get myself ready for Twin Peaks: The Return I found myself rewatching the first two seasons, reading the recently published book The Secret History of Twin Peaks by Mark Frost, rewatching the surreal prequel Fire Walk With Me ( 1992 ) and have a constant craving for donuts, cherry pie and damn fine coffee. 

Since the first episode of Twin Peaks: The Return aired in May, the show has been the most exciting and mystifying thing on television again, as it is the first thing that David Lynch has directed in over a decade. The 18-episode run is set to keep us occupied and digging for clues through until September. References from Lynch’s other movies, such as characters and specific gestures, as well as cameos of Lynch’s favorite actors and actresses, have been well included in the show.

As expected, Lynch uses his Midas touch in the series by collating long scenes of slow rituals, strange angles and lengthy dreamlike shots throughout the show. Topped with intense build-ups and surprising scenes -- that sometimes are snatched away before we know what really happened – the show leaves us bewildered.

Moreover, it features a soundtrack designed by Lynch himself, who includes sets of known musicians of his choice, such as Chromatics, Au Revoir Simone and Nine Inch Nails, performing on the stage of the Bang Bang bar, a popular tavern in Twin Peaks. There are a lot of important details that viewers might, or might not, miss, that only enhance our curiosity to follow every clue.

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As we’re now in the midst of The Return, there are more strange things to be expected from the remaining episodes, which need to be experienced in a suitable Lynchian way.

The filmmaker personally recommended viewers to watch The Return as close to the screen as one can get, to use headphones, turn the lights down and not to use a telephone, as every single second of what we see on the screen is directed by him and all the sounds are designed solitarily by him too.

Twin Peaks is designed to be felt at the moment and puts you in the moment. It needs to be experienced, and not necessarily be understood straight away, just as how we perceive an artist and his work. It is probably once again one of the best, and strangest, things on television. (asw)

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Currently based in Melbourne, Ashanti Permatasari enjoys being overwhelmed by films, stories, and cinema, has a strong interest in pop culture and currently managing a curated online store that sells Indonesian brands called Gaharu Store (@gaharu.store). See what she's up to on Instagram @bedhairday.

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