EPISODE 6: “REALIZATION TIME”
Directed by Caleb Deschanel, Written by Harley Peyton
Airdate May 26th, 1990
A half-moon over The Great Northern is looking down on the same scene that closed the last episode, the one with a naked Audrey in Coop’s bed, much to Coop’s surprise. He gently rebukes her bold advance, while not altogether denying his desire for her: “What I want and what I need are two different things,” he concedes. He recognizes however that what she needs most is a good friend, not a lover, and they agree to leave it at that.
The next morning at the sheriff’s station, Andy and Lucy are still on icy terms, and Lucy gets a mysterious phone call that depresses her. Coop meanwhile joins Doc Hayward and Truman, who are busy studying up on the habits and behaviors of mynah birds in the presence of Waldo, Jacques Renault’s pet and a possible witness to Laura’s murder. It was Waldo, you’ll remember, who was responsible for the bite marks on Laura’s shoulder. The bird isn’t speaking yet because he’s malnourished. Deputy Hawk arrives with forensics results that place Laura, Ronette and Leo all in Jacques’s cabin the night of the murder. Coop leaves his trusty micro-cassette recorder on voice-activation mode next to Waldo’s cage in case the bird decides to start talking while they go check out One Eyed Jacks, where forensics reveals the fragment of poker chip found in Laura’s stomach came from, and where Jacques Renault is known to be employed dealing cards. The thing is, One Eyed Jacks is over the Canadian border and thus out of Coop’s federal jurisdiction, which is why he’s thinking they ought to go as Bookhouse Boys.
Leo, having been chased off by Shelly in a hail of gunfire at the end of last episode, is somehow unharmed and spying on the house. He sees Bobby arrive, sees Bobby and Shelly embrace, then he grabs his rifle. Inside, Shelly tearfully recounts the previous evening, and knows now that Leo will stop at nothing to kill her. Bobby once again swears to protect her. Outside, Leo hears Lucy gabbing about Waldo on his police scanner and reckoning that the more pressing matter, he takes off before he can kill Bobby.
At the Palmer’s, Maddy plays the cassette she found hidden in Laura’s bedpost for Donna and James. It was made for Dr. Jacoby, and on it Laura talks about her sex appeal like it’s something to be ashamed of. Maddy found an empty cassette case as well, and they figure Jacoby must have the actual cassette that goes with it. But based on what Laura says about Dr. J “liking” her, they suspect he might not be too willing to give it up. So James devises a break in, using a manipulation of Laura’s voice from the tape to lure Jacoby away from his office, then using Maddy in disguise as her cousin as a visual deterrent to keep him away.
At the perfume counter of Horne’s Department Store, Audrey is bored by the work but intrigued by the environment. She sneaks into store manager Emory Battis’ office for a smoke and a snoop, and ends up hiding in the closet overhearing a conversation between Battis and her coworker from the counter, Jenny. They’re talking about a “club” and how the people there like her and want her to continue. She can do so as a hostess, a waitress, or if she’s really lucky, a “hospitality girl,” a.k.a. prostitute. Battis gives Jenny a phone number and tells her to ask for Black Rose. After they’re gone but before Audrey leaves, she finds a notebook filled with girls’ names and hearts beside them. Ronette’s name is one on the list.
Hank and Shelly are working the morning shift together at the diner. Hank’s thanking her for being around for Norma while he was inside, says she wrote him how helpful they were, Shelly and Pete. Shelly’s confused: Pete? Hank starts reeling her in: Is that not his name, the fella who’s always around? Shelly falls for it: You mean Ed? Ed, yeah that’s it. See what he did there? Then, as if blatant manipulation wasn’t shady enough, Hank reinforces his criminal past by stealing a customer’s lighter while clearing plates from the counter. Coop and Truman show up as second after this so the Sheriff can fill Hank in on his parole requirements.
Back at the department store talking to Jenny, Audrey uses what she overheard to play like she’s in on the “club” deal, but gosh she lost the number for Black Rose. Jenny, gullible as Shelly, gives it to her and Audrey makes the call.
Pete’s showing off a taxidermied fish to Truman while the Sheriff is waiting to talk with Josie. He wants to know what she was doing at the motel where they busted the one-armed man. She denies being there but he knows Hawk saw her. She’s scared but he convinces her to talk. She tells him Ben and Catherine were at the motel, and shows him the pictures she took, says they’re proof these two are colluding against her. He wants to know how, and all she knows is she heard them talking about a fire at the mill. This is bullshit of course, because we know from the last episode that Josie is conspiring with Ben against Catherine, and knows fully about the plans for the mill fire. To her conniving credit though, Josie feigns ignorance well, all doe-eyed and pouty-lipped.
Coop donned now in a different kind of black suit, a dapper tux, meets with Truman and Ed at The Great Northern. He’s brought along 10k of bureau money for gambling purposes. Before they go, though, Truman needs a word alone with Coop. He shares Josie’s concerns with the Special Agent. Hawk shows up and the gang’s all there. Their cover will be that they’re oral surgeons from the Tri-Cities on vacation. Meanwhile Audrey is trying to reach Coop to relay the info she learned from the Department Store that day, but he’s already gone.
Catherine gets a housecall from a lawyer. It turns out her life insurance policy – which takes effect at midnight, hence his showing up – still needs her signature. As she peruses the document, she notices Josie is listed as her beneficiary to the tune of a cool million smackeroos. Obviously Catherine didn’t do this, but she doesn’t let on to this degree, merely notes how odd it is she and this particular lawyer have never met. He says that’s because the policy was arranged and filed by Josie and Ben Horne, who had said they were going to collect her signature, but gosh they must have forgotten. Catherine declines to sign the policy and dismisses the lawyer. She’s been double-crossed and knows it, so she checks for the real ledger and of course, it’s gone.
Still desperately seeking Cooper, Audrey sees an Asian man checking into the hotel. This is more important than it seems in this moment.
Meanwhile, at the station Coop and Ed are getting wired up and costumed in preparation for heading to One Eyed Jacks. In the conference room, though, unbeknownst to them, Waldo starts to talk. He repeats Laura’s name, the tape recorder clicks on to capture some of it, then he’s shot from outside the station by Leo. Coop and co. race into the conference room, but it’s too late, Waldo’s dead. Leo flees unseen. Coop tries his recorder and it caught everything Waldo was saying, including a very chilling partial transcript of the night Laura was killed: “don’t do that,” “hurting me,” “stop it,” and “Leo no.”
Later at One Eyed Jacks, Ed and Coop enter unmolested and are approached by Blackie, who buys their cover and directs them towards the casino. They radio the scene to Hawk and Truman, who are observing out in the truck since Jacques Renault knows them both on sight.
Maddy is sneaking out of the Palmer house, she thinks undetected, but Leland is awake in the dark of the living room and watches her go. As she’s going to meet James and Donna in the park to hoodwink Dr. J, she’s wearing a blond wig and has lost her glasses, both of which conspire to make her the spitting image of Laura. This seems to pique Leland’s interest.
The Icelanders are partying down at The Great Northern. Ben and Jerry have an aside: Ben is impatient, he wants the Icelanders to sign the investment contracts for Ghostwood Estates immediately. Jerry says they’re close but they want a big signing party … complete with gambling and sex workers at One Eyed Jacks, which they might have found out about through Jerry. Ben agrees, but wants to nip this in the bud tonight. All of it. He calls Josie to find out where Catherine is, she needs to be in the mill when it catches fire. Josie says she’ll get her there and hangs up, revealing Hank at her side. What a tangled web she weaves.
Now Audrey’s at One Eyed Jacks – hopping place – meeting with Blackie and pretending to be the new girl Gattis sent from the perfume counter. She’s going by the name Hester Prynne. How well-read our Miss Horne is. She tries to talk her way through a fake resume but Blackie calls her out on it, as well as the name. Seems she’s read Hawthorne as well. Audrey convinces her to let her stay anyway by tying a cherry stem into a knot using only the strength and contorting powers of her tongue. She didn’t invent this gag, but you’d think she did. Naturally, she gets the damn job.
In the casino, Coop’s racking up the chips playing blackjack. Then Jacques Renault takes over the dealing.
Jacoby is watching the latest installment of INVITATION TO LOVE when he gets the call from “Laura.” Naturally, he doesn’t believe it, thinks it’s a sick gag, but she directs him to the door where there’s a package containing a videotape. On the videotape is “Laura” holding up the day’s newspaper. She says she wants to meet him and tells him where, a red-herring location. The call complete, James and Donna leave her by the gazebo in the park to go break in to Jacoby’s office. Bobby is on the scene too, following James. He creeps up and sees Maddy as Laura. But someone’s watching him, too, or also watching her. Bobby flees but this second, unseen person remains, focused on Maddy. Or Laura. Dr. J can tell from the background of the video that “Laura” isn’t where she told him to go, the gazebo gives her away. He takes off for the park instead and Donna and James break in to his office. Bobby sees them, and while they’re inside he plants a big ol’ bag of cocaine in James’ gas tank, then hits bricks.
The episode draws to a close with Maddy still being watched by an unknown man, his gender given away by his breathing, hard and fast, either scared or agitated.
This episode was the first of three to be directed by Caleb Deschanel – husband to Mary Jo, who plays Eileen Hayward, Donna’s mom, and father to Zooey NEW GIRL and Emily BONES – who was already quite accomplished as a cinematographer when he came to TWIN PEAKS, having been nominated for a pair of Oscars by that time, once for THE RIGHT STUFF and once for THE NATURAL. To date, he has three additional nominations in the same category, for FLY AWAY HOME, THE PATRIOT, and THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST. Deschanel is another storied graduate of the equally storied University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, and he was there at the really cool time in the late 60’s/early70’s when everybody was there, including Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas, with whom Deschanel was a founding member of the famed American Zoetrope production team, for whom he shot THE BLACK STALLION and MORE AMERICAN GRAFFITTI. Deschanel has only directed two features, THE ESCAPE ARTIST from 1981 about a young would-be Houdini, and CRUSOE, a take on Daniel Defoe’s stranded hero starring Aiden Quinn, which came out just before TWIN PEAKS began to air. The episode was written yet again by Harley Peyton, the show’s top writer after Frost.
In summary, for everything that goes down this episode in regards to the investigation – Jacques Renault, Leo, Waldo, and One Eyed Jacks – the real action happens at the very end and is focused on Maddy, because whoever this unseen figure is who’s having this reaction to seeing “Laura” obviously means her harm. It could be Leo, who is unaccounted for after killing Waldo, but also we remember what the Log Lady said about a third man, alone, passing through the forest after Jacques, Leo, Laura, and Ronette the night Laura died, and we know this could be that person. This is the first really tantalizing clue that the mystery is close to being solved: the killer has come out of hiding. And with just one episode to go in the first season, anticipation is running high. But this is TWIN PEAKS, so if you’re expecting a straight-forward resolution … wait, hang on, I’m laughing too hard to type …
Next week – EPISODE SEVEN: “THE LAST EVENING” – The Season One Finale
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