epiphany_maria (epiphany_maria) wrote,
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epiphany_maria

Retro Review: Twin Peaks Season 1 part 1

Twin Peaks (1990 - 1991)

Season 1 of this soap/mystery classic was a trendsetter, whereas other soaps like 'Hyperion Bay' are long forgotten. Season 2 and the prequel movie 'Fire Walk With Me' were dire but season 1 had something. Sadly this something has been diluted by the lacklustre season 2, the movie and its many imitators.

Season One
Pilot
The theme music is beautiful. Pete goes out fishing to get away from his shrew wife and finds a dead body. The body is that of Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee) the pretty, popular small town princess. She's horribly and very artistically dead. Everyone's lives are about to be changed by this murder of this girl whose Homecoming Queen photo takes pride of place in her school's trophy cabinet. Laura's boyfriend Bobby doesn't seem overly upset that Laura is dead preferring to smooch with Shelly, the put-upon wife of local obligatory psychotic jackass Leo. Meanwhile Audrey has bad hair and Laura's best friend Donna wears vile early 90's attire. Ronnette who was almost the victim of the same person or persons who killed Laura is in bad shape but nobody really cares as she was poor and unpopular.

FBI Agent Cooper shows up to investigate, his over slicked hair and black suit are so sharp you'd probably cut yourself on his lapels. Cooper meets the eccentric Twin Peaks locals like the vastly irritating Dr Jacoby and the idiot Andy and Lucy. He tours the town and gets briefed on the Packard Saw Mill deal and the biker bar where the bikers listen to a caterwauling Lilith Fair reject and the shiny toothed high school boys are violent delinquents.

This was stylish but dull. This was groundbreaking in 1990, but not anymore.

Best Lines:
"She's dead. Wrapped in plastic."

"Is there something wrong, young pretty girl?"


~
Episode 1

Laura's dead and her BBF Donna is already kissing Laura's secret boyfriend James. Donna's former boyfriend Mike and Laura's boyfriend Bobby are put out by this. Mike really can't act. Meanwhile Leo is revealed to have a cleanliness fetish and a penchant for wife beating. Also Leo, Mike, Laura and Bobby were involved in some vague criminality. Bobby's ineffective parents do nothing about his sulkiness and petulance. How Laura fitted in being pretty and popular, juggling two boyfriends, rampant drug use, seeing shrink Dr Jacoby, teaching Josie Packard English, founding a local meals-on-wheels programme, being a criminal and tutoring the autistic Johnny Horne isn't explained.

Everyone in this town is cheating. James' uncle Ed is cheating on his nutty wife Nadine with diner owner Norma who is married to Hank. Sheriff Truman is seeing Josie who despite being wealthy shares a house with her resentful sister-in-law Catherine who is married to Pete. Catherine is cheating on Pete with Ben Horne who is Audrey and Johnny's father. Ben emotionally neglects Audrey and ignores Johnny's issues, writing Johnny off as having emotional problems when he is clearly either mentally handicapped or autistic.

This was an okay episode which marked the first appearance of Bob and the Log Lady.

Best Lines:
"I really have to urinate."

"This isn't funny Bobby."
"I'm not laughing."

"Can I ask her about her log?"
"Many have."


~
Episode 2

It is becoming clear to many people that Laura far from being an angel was also a harpy sent from hell. Ben's even more annoying brother Jerry shows up. Ben and Jerry bond by visiting One Eyed Jack's a brothel/casino where Ben pimps out perfume salesgirls who work at his department store. The hookers wear cheesy 80's attire.

James and Donna continue their twee relationship. Leo and a never revealed accomplice menace Mike and Bobby over their drug dealing business. The soap within a soap 'Invitation to Love' that everyone in Twin Peaks watches makes its first appearance. Cooper investigates Laura's murder by throwing rocks. Leland Palmer (Ray Wise of 'Reaper') is going psycho. Cooper has a dream of the Black Lodge, the midget and people who talk backwards.

This was a not very good episode, which is mostly memorable for Miguel Ferrer making his first appearance as the memorably sarcastic and wonderfully rude Albert.

Best Line:
"What is going on in this house?"

~
Episode 3

Albert annoys Truman to such an extend that Truman punches him out. Cooper rants at Albert about Twin Peaks being heaven, via his usual rather irritating method of expressing himself. Laura's lookalike cousin Madeline (Sheryl Lee, again, in a brunette wig) pays a visit. More snippets of 'Invitation to Love' are shown, this hilariously tacky 80's looking soap apparently only has five characters: Jared, his twin daughters Jade and Emerald, loser Chet and the mean hoodlum Montana.

Audrey wears 80's power dressing attire to Laura's funeral, poor Johnny looks upset and Donna wears a flying saucer styled hat. Bobby causes a scene by pointing out that everyone knew Laura was massively troubled but choose to ignore it. And he's right as proved by the inaction of among them Dr Jacoby, Donna, Audrey and James. But Bobby's tantrum is upstaged when Leland hurls himself down into Laura's grave to hug her coffin as Sarah Palmer shrieks in horror. This is high black comedy though when Shelly later re-enacts it to the mocking delight of diner customers, she shows a stunning lack of compassion.

Truman reveals to Cooper that there is something evil in the woods that surround Twin Peaks and that he is part of a long standing secret society, the Bookhouse Boys that defends against it. Members include James, Ed and Deputy Hawk. The Bookhouse Boys are currently crusading against Leo's drug dealing or they could just be having homosocial bonding experiences.

This was another not very good episode, Cooper is seriously annoying.

Best Lines:
"I have travelled thousands of miles and apparently several centuries to this forgotten sinkhole."

"My darling daughter Jade. And Emerald."

"I knew who she was all right, everybody did."

"I realise you experience an ongoing disinclination to enter fully into meaningful exchange."

"Twin Peaks is different."

"A darkness, a presence. It takes many forms but it's been out there for as long as anyone can remember."

~
Episode 4

Audrey and Donna learn Laura worked as a hooker at One Eyed Jack's, this surprises neither of them. Again how Laura juggled school, hooking, drug dealing, seeing Bobby kill someone, dating two boyfriends, rampant drug use, seeing shrink Dr Jacoby, teaching Josie Packard English, founding a local meals-on-wheels programme, working the perfume counter at Horne's department store and tutoring the autistic Johnny Horne without her mother noticing or anyone who did notice, caring isn't explained.

Cooper is eyeballed by a llama. Bobby uses Shelly in his plot to get rid of Leo. Shelly's bought a gun, she wants rid of Leostein too. Shelly can't act. Meanwhile more viewings of 'Invitation to Love' continue to mirror life in the rusticated mildew farm that is Twin Peaks.

James sees Madeline and starts having emotional adultery with her immediately. The Donna/James/Madeline triangle o'doom was long, infuriating and boring. Norma's jailbird husband Hank gets parole, it is revealed that he is in cahoots with Josie. Does it have something to do with the death of her rich husband Andrew nearly two years ago? Meanwhile Ben hires Leo to burn down the Packard Saw Mill as part of his and Catherine's plan to frame Josie and have the land for his Ghostwood development.

This was another not so very good episode, Ben's evil rich dude act is tired.
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