‘Twin Peaks’ Season 3, Episode 7: Coop’s Flown the Coop

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Here’s a look at Episode Seven, followed by a section in which I theorize about where all this is headed and what it all means- to a point, at least! (A look at Episodes 5 & 6 can be found here, and click here for a look at the others, among other articles!)

Episode Seven

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We find out what Hawk found hidden in that stall door- it’s diary pages from Laura Palmer’s Secret Diary. In them, she references knowing who BOB was, as well as recounting her dream of the Black Lodge, as seen in “FWWM,” in which she interacted with Annie (Heather Graham), who told her the “Good Dale” was trapped in the Black Lodge and can’t get out. This despite the fact that Laura never met Cooper, who only came to town after her death. Hawk wisely notes that, if the “Good” Cooper is still in the Black Lodge, then who was that who came out of it?

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Hawk assumes that Leland hid the pages after he was brought in for questioning in regards to the murder of Jacques Renault (Walter Olkewicz), probably because he did it and feared he’d be frisked and the pages would be found, thus linking him to the murder of his own daughter. Hawk didn’t see Cooper that night he returned, but tells the Sheriff (Robert Forster) that his brother Harry did, as did Dr. Hayward, so he might want to talk to them. He also notes that one diary page is still out there somewhere, as a total of four pages were missing and he only found three.

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Andy, likely investigating the hit-and-run, talks to a man that lives at the same place where the truck that was used in the crime is located. He seems very nervous about Andy being there, and begs him to meet him somewhere else in a couple of hours. He’s obviously expecting someone who wouldn’t be happy to see a cop there, possibly because he knows about the hit-and-run, or because Richard dropped the drugs there and he’s about to make a deal. Either way, he never makes it to that meeting.

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After striking out with a still ill Harry- might he have cancer?- the “other” Sheriff Truman calls Dr. Hayward (the late Warren Frost, co-creator Mark’s father, to whom the episode is dedicated). Over Skype on a nifty monitor that rises up out of Truman’s desk, Dr. Hayward informs him that Agent Cooper was acting strange that night and he insisted on his coming to the hospital to be checked out. Cooper later got dressed and left the hospital, never to be seen again. Hayward last spotted him near intensive care, and suspected that he might have paid a visit to Audrey (Sherilyn Fenn), who was there in a coma after the bank explosion in the series finale.

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Lt. Knox arrives in Buckhorn and talks to the Detective and Coroner about the prints they ran. She finds out it’s from a headless dead body and that the head was still MIA. Also, the body is that of a man in his forties, and the man died recently. According to the show, Major Briggs died in a fire shortly after being paid a visit by Agent Cooper, aka Mr. C. As this was some 25 years ago, obviously it doesn’t make sense on any number of levels.

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Knox calls Colonel Davis and informs him of all this, while a creepy black-faced guy lurks in the background. Though Knox seems to notice him, she doesn’t react as strongly to the sight as one might think, inferring that perhaps she DIDN’T see him after all and was just looking around to make sure no one was listening to her phone conversation. Close viewers will note that this is the same man that was in the adjacent cell to murder suspect William Hastings (Matthew Lillard) in the premiere that mysteriously seemed to dissolve into thin air.

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Albert returns to report the bad news to Cole about Diane, who insists they pay her a visit at her place together and try again. She’s decidedly not happy to see them, but hears them out anyway. They tell her about Cooper being in prison (“Good,” she says, implying things didn’t end well between the two), and Cole infers it might be connected to the “Blue Rose” cases. She begrudgingly agrees to go and talk to Mr. C. and assess the situation.

If this doesn’t seem like the Diane some of us expected, I suspect there’s a reason for that which we will find out soon enough. Either way, Laura Dern may be even fiercer here than she was on “Big Little Lies,” which is saying something.

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On the plane ride to the prison, Tammy shares with Cole and Albert what she found in regards to Mr. C’s fingerprints, which appear to be reversed from the “real” Agent Cooper’s original prints. Cole makes a big show of fooling with Tammy’s hands, doing a variation of “This Little Piggy” with her fingers, but instead saying “I’m very, very happy to see you again, old friend” as he grasps each of her digits. He also dubs her ring finger the “spiritual finger.”

Albert shows Tammy the only known photo of Mr. C., which was taken at a fancy mansion near Rio in Brazil. By the time they tracked the place down, Mr. C. was gone and the place was empty. He wasn’t seen again until he was arrested recently, and was now being held at Yankton Federal Prison in Sioux City.

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Careful viewers will recall that this was the prison that Mr. C. was researching online- it’s also where his associate Ray (George Griffith) is being held, who was about to double-cross him, according to his partner Darya (Nicole LaLiberte), who Mr. C. already killed. This shows that, despite the circumstances of his capture, maybe Mr. C. being there wasn’t such a coincidence after all, which we later see is completely the case.

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Diane talks to Mr. C. and it’s obvious right away that she’s upset with him, which he picks up on. She asks him where they saw each other last, and he says her place. It’s clear something heavy went down between them. She finally asks “Who are you?” Mr. C. acts confused, and asks her what she means. She leaves in tears and tells Cole that it wasn’t the Coop she knew- he’s missing his heart, metaphorically speaking. She tells Cole she’ll tell him what happened the last time she saw him, but not right this moment.

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Mr. C. is taken back to his cell, where he requests a talk with the Warden, once again referencing a person named “Strawberry.” The Warden takes the meeting in his office, shutting off the cameras so that they can talk freely, but holding a gun on Mr. C. just in case. Mr. C. says that he wants out of prison at 1am that night, along with Ray, and wants a car and gun waiting for him when he leaves. The Warden naturally scoffs at this.

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Mr. C. tells him that he knows about the “late Mr. Strawberry” and references the mysterious dog leg found in the trunk of his car upon his capture. He says there are three more dog legs out there and they will be sent, along with some sensitive information, to some very nasty people if the Warden doesn’t do what he asks, or if anything bad should happen to him. To prove he knows about what the Warden did, he name drops Joe McCluskey, which clearly rattles the Warden.

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Mr. C. says he’s not interested in the Warden and that he’ll never see him again if he does what he asked. The Warden eventually acquiesces and sure enough, lets Mr. C. out at 1am, leaving Mr. C. to continue to wreak havoc elsewhere in the next episode. I’m guessing Ray isn’t long for this world, either, given his plot to kill Mr. C. My guess is that he’ll be heading to Vegas to eliminate Dougie, aka the “real” Agent Cooper, once and for all.

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Dougie gets a visit from the police, including one played by comic actor David Koechner, concerning his car. Tony ducks out before they arrive after unsuccessfully trying to figure out what Dougie is up to with their boss and if it has anything to do with him. Janey, there to pick Dougie up after work, comes in and asks what this is all about to the detectives when Dougie doesn’t come down in a timely manner.

Finally, they tell them that Dougie’s car was involved in an explosion, which took the lives of several known car thieves, which does not go unnoticed by Dougie’s boss, who has joined them. Janey is dismissive of them, telling them the car wasn’t reported stolen because it wasn’t a big deal, which the detectives are understandably dubious of, and one of them gives Janey their card and says they will need to follow this up later and fill out some paperwork.

Dougie’s boss says he needs to talk to him later, in regards to the case files, but it can wait. Dougie and Janey go to leave and she tells him she paid off the bookies. As they approach the plaza and the statue of a man with a gun Dougie was so fascinated by, a real man with a gun approaches and tries to kill him- none other than Ike “The Spike,” who had to resort to a gun when he bent his spike killing the witness in the previous episode.

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Alas, Agent Cooper’s FBI training dies hard, and he is easily able to render Ike defenseless with several Karate chops to the throat, nabbing his gun and seemingly a piece of skin burned from Ike’s hand in the process, presumably from firing the weapon. This should help the cops to track Ike down pretty easily, along with all the witnesses around. Sloppy work, Ike. Sweet moves, Dougie! (Enthuses one witness: “Dougie Jones- he moved like a cobra!”)

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We check in with Ben Horne (Richard Beymer), whose brother Jerry (David Patrick Kelley) reported his car missing earlier- might Richard have taken it? His secretary Beverly (Ashley Judd) keeps hearing a whistling type hum in the area, and asks Ben to help her figure out what is causing it. Might there be a draft coming in from one of Audrey’s secret passages she used to spy on her dad from? Is she up to her old tricks? Or is someone else?

He tells her to have maintenance look into it in the morning and sends her home, noting she’s there awfully late. Before she goes, she gives him the key that Jade sent, which arrived earlier. Ben immediately makes the connection to Agent Cooper, but doesn’t say much about it to Beverly.

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We see that Beverly is likely staying late on purpose to avoid her jealous and resentful husband, Tom (Hugh Dillon, “Continuum”), who doesn’t like her going back to work after having retired for some time. Because Tom is ill and can’t work himself, she had no choice but to do so, however, because of medical expenses, one assumes. Beverly lets him know in no uncertain terms that he will not be allowed to mess with her over this, as she has no choice and he’d better not screw this up for her.

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As I noticed in a previous episode, a Renault is back behind the bar at the Roadhouse, and it seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same. This Renault, Jean-Michel (also played by Walter Olkewicz), is clearly into some shady stuff, as per usual. In a phone call, he alludes to arranging for some prostitutes that turned out to be underage for someone, which that person is upset about, refusing to pay. Renault says no go- everyone pays.

Might the Renault family still be involved in running the infamous One-Eyed Jacks? If so, perhaps Ben Horne is as well. Either way, they still seem to be recruiting high school girls to work there, which is all kinds of icky. Also, I wouldn’t be surprised if Renault is involved in the drug trade as well- note that Richard came there to pay off Deputy Chad.

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We end with a seemingly random scene at the RR Diner, where a man runs in and asks if anyone has seen Bill and then runs off when they say they haven’t. Might that be same guy that Andy was supposed to meet with that never showed up? Hard to say, but no way it doesn’t mean something.

Fun side note: the song playing in the scene, “Sleep Walk,” by Santo & Johnny, was also prominently featured in Stephen King’s “Sleepwalkers,” with star Mädchen Amick (Shelly the waitress), made shortly after the original run of “Twin Peaks” ended.

Theories and Conclusions For Episodes 5-7

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As I suspected, this iteration of “Twin Peaks” is more like “Fire Walk With Me” than the original show, which has turned some people off big-time, as many didn’t care for that movie. Somewhat ironically, though a lot of people tend to dismiss the second season of “TP” entirely- or at least almost everything after Laura Palmer’s murder was solved, save the Lynch-directed episodes- it’s precisely that vibe that haters seem to be missing in this version, which is to say, the sillier, more slapstick version.

I loved it all, but I really dig what Lynch is doing with this version of the show, too. When the original “TP” aired, it was groundbreaking TV, that paved the way for a host of left-of-center shows, from “The X-Files” to “Mad Men” to “The Sopranos” and “Lost” and lots more in-between. Now, remarkably, it’s just as ground-breaking over 25 years later.

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As Lynch stated in interviews, it’s meant to be taken as one long movie, rather than individual stand-alone episodes. Clearly this is rubbing some people the wrong way, particularly those who hate Lynch’s languid style and the fact that he isn’t afraid to take his time to let the story unfold.

I remember hearing someone complain about scenes like the one with the old man in Cooper’s room after he was shot in the Season 2 premiere and the scene in the bank in the series finale, and how long-winded they were. This kind of thing has been a trademark of Lynch’s work from the jump, with “Eraserhead,” and has been a consistent trademark throughout his career. You’d think people would be used to it by now, but no such luck.

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Sadly, in this day and age, many people have short attention spans, something binge-watching hasn’t exactly helped. Lynch said he purposely didn’t want people to blare through the new “Twin Peaks,” but to savor it, and there is a method to his madness, believe it or not. On the one hand, he’s trying to capture the mundane, even in the face of the highly unusual, and on the other, he’s signaling viewers to pay attention, because something important might be coming.

I get where some viewers might think Lynch is trolling them. I can just hear the complaints now about “Did we really need to see a guy sweeping the floor at the Roadhouse for several uninterrupted minutes while ‘Green Onions’ played out?” Maybe not, but I guarantee you that exchange with Renault will mean something later. Or maybe it won’t. Maybe Lynch is trolling people somewhat. But so what? He’s been doing it for ages- why stop now?

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Deal with it, or don’t watch, simple as that. Or simply wait until the season is over and binge-watch it anyway. But shut up about it, please. Us fans don’t want to hear negativity about something that’s been a hallmark of the show from Day One. The “Twin Peaks” you’re longing for isn’t the “real” “Twin Peaks,” it’s the diluted, watered-down version that Lynch and Frost let get away from them somewhat while they were busy with other projects. No fan wants a return of THAT.

Once again, I do think there’s a point to most of this, we just can’t see the forest for all the trees, as it were. Obviously, a lot of the chaos we’re seeing spread across the globe involves the actions of Mr. C. and possibly Phillip Jeffries, or someone pretending to be him, at least. We know that the denizens of the Black lodge can inhabit people- might Jefferies be inhabited by, say, the Giant? Or possibly Mike?

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Also, for those bitching about not enough of the show being set in Twin Peaks, it’s also obvious that we’re getting there, slowly but surely. A lot of what’s happening ties back into the events of the original series and the movie, from the missing pages of Laura’s diary, to the telephone pole, to Cooper’s room key, to all of the original characters we know and love cropping up here and there.

As time goes on, we’ll see more and more stuff set there- we already have. You just have to be patient and hang in there. It’s also obvious that, as the show goes on, all things will converge on Twin Peaks, the town. I’d be willing to bet that the ultimate showdown between “Good Coop” Dougie and “Bad Coop” Mr. C. will take place there.

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I also think that Agent Cooper is remembering who he is, little by little, as evidenced by little tics like his love of coffee, his stabs at the “thumbs up” signage, and his fascination with case files and the gun-wielding statue. It will happen eventually, and we’ll see the Cooper we know and love soon enough- if not soon enough for some people.

I also think that Mike is sending Cooper signals to help move him along, and keep him out of trouble- hence his avoiding some precarious situations along the way, such as the watchful eyes of Lorraine’s men at Rancho Rosa, the car bomb, and the assassination attempt by Ike. Mike is also pointing him in the direction of some nefarious types, like Tony, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the Mitchum brothers figure into things again on down the line, either.

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I think Mike is doing this to get Coop’s brain working right again, so he can mentally prepare for the showdown with Mr. C./BOB. I also think that there are connections between Tony, the Mitchum brothers, Lorraine, Duncan Todd and Mr. C.- and we already know there are with William Hastings, as Mr. C. framed him and killed his wife.

Trust me, Lynch and Frost know exactly what they’re doing here and it will all tie together in the end, though I don’t doubt there will be some wiggle room for various interpretations in terms of certain things, or it wouldn’t be Lynch, and I think fans prefer it that way, if not casual ones. I personally loved trying to puzzle out what was really going on in “Lost Highway,” “Mulholland Drive” and, to a slightly lesser extent, “Inland Empire.”

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I think when all is said and done, “Twin Peaks” will be along those same lines, which is to say, some of it will add up, and some of it will purposefully remain a mystery. Besides, don’t you want there to be a chance for another season? If Lynch and Frost wrap everything up, that won’t happen, and I do feel if it does, then we’ll get more stuff exclusively set in the town proper.

I think they have a very specific story they want to tell here, and it’s a complicated, globe-spanning one that will eventually tie together in a way that will reward close-viewing and paying attention, mark my words. Once that story is told, then maybe moving forward, we’ll get another story that takes place almost entirely in Twin Peaks itself. Or maybe not. It’s all up to Lynch and Frost, really.

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But I think a lot hinges on how the show is received as well. So far, the general vibe seems positive, at least from critics. Die-hard fans and newbies that like left-of-center stuff also seem to dig it as well. The only people complaining seem to be Johnny-Come-Latelys that misunderstood what the original show was really about. It wasn’t all fun and games and cherry pies and coffee. At its dark heart, the original series was the story of a young girl that was raped and killed by her own father- not exactly a laughing matter.

Sure, you had the quirky cast and a town full of oddballs, with all sort of wacky things happening, but it was still about the darkness lurking under every corner, behind every shadow, creeping underneath the heart of small towns and suburbia everywhere. That’s what really fascinates Lynch, and it’s a theme he’s returned to, time and again. All you’re seeing now is the unfiltered version.

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Lynch directed every episode, oversees every aspect of the show this time around, down to the sound design, which is incredible. As such, it was never going to be about the silly likes of “Little Nicky” or the failed attempt at Noir seen in the James & Evelyn storyline- nor should it be. Was anyone really clamoring for a repeat of that? No, hardcore fans want the real deal- the uncut stuff.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying if you don’t like this version of the show, you’re not a “real” fan. It’s been over 25 years since the show aired. It was always going to be different. Maybe some of you don’t care for the fact that it’s all over the place, and there’s seemingly no “there” there. That’s fine. The original “Twin Peaks” will always be there, for you to watch and enjoy. But for the rest of us… I’ll have another slice, thanks- and keep ’em coming.