‘Twin Peaks: The Return’ Finale: The Past Dictates The Future

A rebirth.
By  · Published on September 4th, 2017

A rebirth.

And so it all comes down to this: 28 years, 46 episodes, countless conundrums, dozens of dichotomies, hundreds of personalities, and innumerable mysteries all coming to a head in a 116-minute flurry of finality, Lynch-Frost-style. Whatever you were expecting when this season started, you got more than you were bargaining for narratively, artistically, and emotionally. As captivating as it was before, Twin Peaks was even more so this go-around, built on a mythology already established and thus not as narratively-dependent on traditional plotting. The Return was more of a poem than it was televisual prose, an experience dependent on imagery, philosophy, and most importantly, faith. The series might not have garnered as many new viewers as the network expected or hoped, but if I might be frank, this wasn’t for the new guys. This wasn’t for the Johnny-Come-Latelys, it was for us, the congregation, the true believers, the people who were changed by the show, who had their perspectives forever altered by it. Whether you’re Damon Lindelof, co-creator of Lost and The Leftovers, or just some bearded weirdo like me living in a log cabin in the woods of Washington State, if you made it this far and you’re still hanging on every glimpse of foggy forest, every open-faced Palmer, and every iteration of Coop they throw at us, then you’re bona fide, as my grandmother would say, you’re the real-deal Holyfield, a true Peak Freak (or whatever they call us), and this finale was for you.

People are going to be complaining about a lack of resolution, the intentional confoundment of it all, but if you thought you were going to get something definitive with these final two episodes, you were watching the wrong show. Twin Peaks was never about absolutes, it was never about logic or reason or understanding, at least not this latter in the literal way we too often use it; Twin Peaks was about the uncertainties of our world and ourselves, it was about the things we can’t know or confine with our reason, it was about understanding on a subconscious level, intuiting our lives instead of walking a straight path through them. People are going to be complaining. Let them. Tonight was never supposed to be the perfect ending. It was supposed to be the perfect rebirth. And it was.

Buckle up, we’re gonna be together a hot minute here…

Right off the bat Lynch is throwing curveballs. The penultimate episode begins in Buckhorn, South Dakota, specifically in the hotel room where Albert, Cole, and Tammy have witnessed the de-Tulpa-fication of the being we knew to be Diane. Cole is lamenting not being able to pull the trigger himself, which Albert attributes to him going soft in his old age. An offhanded comment about his lingering sexual prowess aside, Cole has another confession: there’s something he’s kept from Albert for 25 years: before the disappearance of Briggs – a.k.a. his first death, so back before the end of season 2 – the Major shared with Cole and Cooper his discovery of an entity, an “extreme negative force” referred to in olden times (Cole’s words) as “Jowday.” See where this is going? Over time, Cole says, Jowday morphed into Judy. Armed with this knowledge, the three men put together a plan to find Judy, but then “something happened” to both the Major and Coop, referring to the Major’s “death” and Coop’s trip to The Black Lodge. Phillip Jeffries, who according to Cole “doesn’t really exist anymore, at least not in the normal sense” – someone, unsurprisingly, knows more than he’s letting on – was also on the trail of this entity at one point (“We’re not going to talk about Judy”), and he disappeared as well. Noticing a pattern? Cooper, though, had some foresight, and the last thing he said to Cole was if he was to disappear, Cole should do whatever it takes to find him because “I’m trying to kill two birds with one stone.” This is significant, of course, because it was mentioned by the Fireman in context to Richard and Linda, the same folks the Fireman warned Cooper about in the season three premiere. Cole connects this message to the current business with two Coops and mentions that a paid informant, Ray Monroe – who wasn’t this guy working for? – sent them a message saying the Coop they met in prison was seeking a set of coordinates from Major Briggs. Cole’s sorry he couldn’t tell Albert, the other member of the Blue Rose Task Force at the time, about the plan, and furthermore he’s starting to have doubts it’s working, whatever it is, because they should have heard from the real Coop by now.

Just then, the phone rings.

It’s Special Agent Headley calling from the Las Vegas hospital room of Dougie Jones. Only problem is, Dougie’s gone. As Headley’s explaining the situation, Bud Mullins wanders in and overhears the name Cole. He’s clutching the message for Cole Cooper gave him before leaving, and shares it: “I am headed for Sheriff Truman’s. It is 2:53 in Las Vegas. 2 + 5+ 3 is 10, and that’s the number of completion.” Cole shares the news that Dougie is Cooper with his team, and they churn up the recent events of Dougie’s life. They don’t add up to much except one thing: a Blue Rose case. Cole tells Albert and Tammy to saddle up, he knows where Coop’s headed. A pause to say here Cole’s evolution from a quirky side-character to an integral part of the story has been a delight to watch, and not just because of Lynch’s performance, though that is legitimately award-worthy; too often characters of Cole’s age are throwaway, second-tier supporting at best, but Lynch has given them lead ground everywhere in his series. Cole, Albert, Margaret Lanterman, Frank Truman, Hawk, Ben and Jerry, Ed and Norma, Carl Rodd, Bud Mullins, even characters whose actors have passed like BOB’s Frank Silva and Don S. Davis’ Major Briggs, are all treated not as caricatures (except maybe for uber-stoner Jerry, but that’s not an age thing) but as the leading figures they are, not inept by their age but capable for it, the most wizened in the landscape. Youth isn’t an asset in Twin Peaks and it never has been, it’s something to be either exploited or saved from, as the rest of the finale will demonstrate…

Cut to the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Station that night, down in the pen where the prisoners have drifted off to sleep, except for Deputy Chad, who’s been waiting for the Drunk to nod off. Once he does, Chad tries to slyly take something out of his boot, but the Drunk wakes and starts parroting again.

Mr. C is still headed towards Twin Peaks, driving through the night.

In her jail cell, sensing him, Naido starts whining in her sleep, rousing James and Freddie. She wakes in a trance, whining louder and more frantically, reaching into the air, the Drunk mimicking her.

Across town at The Great Northern, Ben Horne is on the phone with authorities in Wyoming who have apprehended a naked Jerry Horne in Jackson Hole. Ben is chagrined, but not surprised. This is the last we’ll hear of this, or see of them.

Mr. C driving through the night.

Then at daybreak his truck parked by the woods in the same spot where Hawk, Andy, Bobby, and Frank parked to pay Jack Rabbit’s Palace a visit. The same puddle of oil by which those men found naked Naido is once again smoking. Mr. C approaches it cautiously, following the coordinates he was given. He walks right up to the puddle and the single young sycamore by it. Light starts to flash. Electricity scratches and Mr. C glitches in time and space. Behind him in the sky a portal opens, the same that took Andy to the Fireman’s. This portal takes Mr. C there as well. He manifests as a cubed head in a floating cage in the theater of The Fireman’s abode. That’s one of the coolest sentences I’ve ever gotten to type. Anyway, across from him, the floating, disembodied head of Major Briggs. For what it’s worth, Mr. C is on the left side, traditionally referred to as the sinister side. The Fireman is there floating above a screen that shows the woods where Mr. C just was, then the Palmer house, then a different spot in the woods. Nearby, a room full of bell-shaped electrical devices spark and crackle, a massive power source. Mr. C, cage and all, is sucked into the golden horn above the screen and spat out into the latter wooded image. He manifests there for “real.”

As he does, Naido wakes in a panic, a panic we all share a second later when Mr. C turns around and finds himself in front of the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Station. Andy sees him in the parking lot, greets him with stunned glee. I thought for sure Mr. C was going to walk right up to Andy without a word and snap his neck or something, but thankfully he lives. I don’t think any of us could’ve forgiven that.

Naido, meanwhile, is going nuts, trying to communicate something, typing in the air, it looks like. Chad, though, is preoccupied with the Drunk, who passes out cold again. The devious deputy then opens the heel of his shoe and produces a skeleton key.

Andy invites Mr. C inside. Lucy is just as excited to see him, but Frank is stupefied. They head into Frank’s office. As they go, Andy remembers the vision he had in relation to his visit to the Fireman’s in which he placed Lucy in a hallway, facing some unseen turmoil. In that vision and this reality, Lucy is wearing the same sweater.

Chad uses his key to let himself out of his cell and into a utility room at the end of the corridor. From there he gets into a safe room where he procures a loaded weapon.

In Frank’s office, Andy offers Coop a cup of coffee, but Mr. C refuses. That should have tipped everyone off right there.

Naido is really going nuts now, thrashing around her cell. The Drunk starts clawing at his bandaged and bleeding wound.

Andy runs past Lucy, telling her “very important, very important.” All this is happening in few-second bursts, a seizing heartbeat of story that’s building to an extended, flatlining climax.

There’s a boil under the Drunk’s bandage, a nasty-looking fucker, and he’s picking at it. Chad stalks out of the back room, armed, just as Andy comes in looking for Hawk. Once again we’re thinking it might be the end for our beloved Deputy Brennan, but Freddie punches his cell door with his garden-gloved hand, knocking it open right into Chad’s kisser, in turn knocking him out.

Lucy gets a call that freaks her out. She patches it through to Frank without saying who it is, only that it’s very, very important. It is, of course, the real Coop, who’s just entering city limits. The jig is up and everyone knows it. Frank draws, Mr. C draws, shots ring out. Mr. C drops dead, but not from Frank’s bullet, from Lucy’s. This is where Andy saw her, in position to save Frank, and likely them all. Andy hears the shot from downstairs and starts to evacuate the prisoners. Coop is still on the phone, and when he gets the update, he’s very insistent no one touches Mr. C’s body. Andy leads the prisoners into Frank’s office. Lucy tells him she understands cell phones now; this is an episode two reference, no real connection to anything, just a nice little narrative bookend.

Photo: Courtesy of SHOWTIME

Hawk runs in and moves to inspect the body but Frank shares Coop’s warning, which takes Hawk a second to comprehend, “Coop” being dead on the floor. Naido starts chattering again. The room goes dark and a trio of Woodsmen appear, digging into Mr. C’s corpse and anointing him in his own blood. Coop arrives and runs into the office as the BOB clod emerges from Mr. C. It hovers in the room, BOB snarling inside. The Mitchums arrive on the scene. BOB attacks Coop, knocking him to the ground. Then Freddie steps forward. We always knew the collection of people in the holding cells had to have some higher purpose, and this is it. Coop knows Freddie, or knows of him, and Freddie knows what to do. Unfortunately, BOB knows Freddie, too. He attacks and Freddie manages a glove-punch, but not one strong enough. BOB keeps coming, charging like a spiked volleyball until Freddie punches him through the floor. Fire erupts from the hole and it seems that could be that, but then slowly, surely BOB floats back, down but not out. The clod makes one last push, then Freddie shatters it into shards that float through the ceiling and disappear. This is the second time BOB’s been released in the Sheriff’s station, the first being after Leland’s death in an interrogation room in season 2.

The office returns to normal. Coop puts the Owl Cave ring on Mr. C, who then fades away.

The ring returns to The Lodge. The good Coop, it seems safe to assume, has won this particular battle. But there’s a lot of time left.

Coop asks Frank for the key to his old room in The Great Northern, which we know was given to Frank by Ben. How Coop knows, though, Frank doesn’t get. Coop says Briggs told him. Not one to argue with inarguable logic, Frank gives up the key as Cole and crew arrive. Coop, meanwhile, becomes transfixed with Naido.

This is when shit gets, well, Peakier.

A superimposed close-up of Coop’s face appears over the scene. It’s gonna be there awhile. Bobby Briggs arrives. Coop tells him the Major knew what was going on here today. He says some things are going to change because the past dictates the future. Candie and the girls arrive with sandwiches. Naido comes for Coop and they touch hands. She “transforms.” Into Diane, the real Diane (though the red hair, black-and-white nail combo might make you think otherwise). They kiss as lovers do, the gallery watching them. He asks if she remembers everything. She does. They look at a clock on the wall. It’s seven to three, now six to three, now seven to three, now six, back and forth, the minute hand wavering like a metronome. Coop’s face still superimposed over it all. Diane and Coop join hands, and in a distorted voice Coop repeats Jeffries’ most memorable line: “We live inside a dream.” Honestly, it feels like we live in a couple of them, at least, right now. Coop says he hopes to see all of them again. It’s a very Wizard of Oz moment, yet again. The room goes dark and Coop calls to Cole excitedly.

Okay. This is where I had to pause things for a minute. This one scene starting with Mr. C and Frank entering the office and ending as described above – besides being a whole lot to take in at once – plays in my mind like an opposing force to the Phillip Jeffries scene in Fire Walk With Me. First of all, their similarities: both scenes revolve around the reappearance of a missing member of the Blue Rose Task Force to senior members of the Task Force, specifically Gordon Cole and Albert Rosenfield. Then, there’s the rapid-fire myth-bomb dropping that instead of opening the doors on mysteries closes at least some of them. But here’s where they start to oppose one another: there’s the benevolence of Coop’s manifestation versus the borderline-threatening insinuations of Jeffries’ appearance; Coop’s action versus Jeffries’ narration; the intentions of their appearance, Coop willful and Jeffries sent (see The Missing Pieces); the opposition of suits, even, Jeffries in white and Cooper in black, not good and evil but yin and yang, complimentary opposites; and the way both scenes conclude with sudden and paranormal vanishings, Jeffries violent and agonizing while Coop and co.’s is painless and more controlled.

Back in the story, Coop, Diane and Cole are walking through a dark corridor that leads to the boiler room under The Great Northern, specifically the door from which James earlier heard the humming. Coop unlocks this door with his room key and says he’s going through alone, neither of them is to follow. He enters – the hum so much louder here – and tells them before closing the door behind him, “see you at the curtain call;” some lines just write themselves.

Coop emerges from shadow into light. MIKE does the same. The latter shares every Peakie’s favorite poem, and electricity surges.

Coop and MIKE now walking through the series of rooms above the convenience store, the same route Mr. C walked a couple episodes back with his Woodsman guide. They climb the stairs. Electricity surges again, more violently. As they go up, the Jumping Man comes down. They emerge into the motel-like structure where we know Phillip Jeffries the metaphysical tea kettle resides. PJ is in his room puffing like the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland. Coop says hi to his old friend. PJ asks Coop to be specific. Coop is: February 23rd, 1989. This is a date we know. This is the date Laura Palmer died. PJ “finds it for him,” saying “this is where you’ll find Judy.” Then something goes wrong, or at least off. “There might be someone,” he/it says, then stops, pauses, and asks doubtfully, “Did you ask me this?” From his steam comes the Owl Cave symbol, which morphs into two diamonds atop one another, which then morphs into a figure 8 (or infinity symbol), with a dot – or ring – moving along the shape of it like a lock opening. The room crackles and strobes. Then goes dark.

All of a sudden, we’re in a black-and-white rehash of Fire Walk With Me, the scene where Laura, on the night of her death, leaves home for the last time on the back of James’ motorcycle with her dad/BOB watching them go. They head for the woods, where Laura, loaded, has a mini breakdown. The only difference from the movie, besides the lack of color, is that Coop is now watching from the woods in the distance. A nice moment of retrofitting comes in when Laura screams at something over James’ shoulder. This is in the original movie, but never explained. It’s assumed she sees Leland out there, but now we know that’s not the case: she’s screaming because she sees Coop. The rest of the scene plays out normally, with Laura turning suddenly cold and asking to be taken home then jumping off James’ bike and running off into the woods to meet Jacques Renault, Leo Johnson, and Ronette Pulaski for their fated encounter. Only Laura never meets them. Coop encounters her in the woods, and though scared, she recognizes him from her dream and takes his hand when he offers it. History, and Twin Peaks, is getting rewritten by the second. This “new” scene features Sheryl Lee today back in wig as Laura Palmer, 18-year-old, and I gotta tell you, I couldn’t tell the difference. As she takes his hand we see her body wrapped in plastic where it was found on the shore outside the Martell’s. It disappears. Like it never happened. Color returns to Coop and Laura in the woods, who are “going home,” Coop says. He leads her through the woods.

Photo: Suzanne Tenner/SHOWTIME

And Twin Peaks starts over. Literally, the first few minutes of the pilot play as they exist – Josie, Pete and Catherine present – but for one change: Pete gets to go fishing, he never finds Laura’s body, because she’s apparently never killed. It all never happened. At least, not here/now/there/then.

In the same timeline, on the same night, in the Palmer house, a demon is screaming. Leland we think, but it’s Sarah. She comes into the living room, takes up Laura’s prom photo and throws it to the ground, begins stabbing it repeatedly with a broken bottle. Something here, very different.

The episode ends with Coop still leading Laura through the woods. Elsewhere, the puddle of oil lights up. A soft scratch of electricity. And Laura is gone. But her screams remain, echoing through the woods.

Julee Cruise plays us out. And the curtain indeed is calling.



The finale opens on a happy note, with Mr. C back in The Black Lodge and burning away to his silver-pea essence. To this MIKE adds Coop’s hair and a little (what else?) electricity, and poof, the silver pea turns gold, and that turns into a brand new Dougie Jones, who’s sent straight to Janey-E and Sonny Jim, presumably forever because this is the last we’ll see of them. Another loose end, tied up. Onto the main event.

With the actual Coop, we’re witnessing the last minute of the previous episode, Laura disappearing from Coop’s hand. As he watches the empty woods, he shifts into The Black Lodge, where we get a repeat of the scenes from the season 3 premiere in which Coop is led out of The Lodge with pit stops at Leland – who tells him to find Laura – and the Arm. The only thing different here comes in the scene with the Arm, who adds to its monologue the question, “is it the story of the little girl who lives down the lane?” This is the same question Audrey asked Charlie two episodes back when he threatened to “end his story as well.” And spoiler alert: this is the closest we get to knowing what happened to Audrey. She does not appear in either episode that aired tonight, meaning the last time we see her is in that brief, white-room, mirror scene. This isn’t my favorite part of the finale, but I respect it. As we’ll see, it’s not like there wasn’t time to throw Audrey a scene this episode, so the explanation that stands was the one intended to be given, or not given as the case may be.

Of particular importance, we see again the scene in which Laura whispers something into Coop’s ear (a mirror of a scene from the earlier seasons) and Coop’s reaction is frightened. Laura screams and disappears in a fashion similar to how Diane’s tulpa did.

Coop emerges into Glastonbury Grove – not the tower in the purple ocean as he did when leaving The Lodge in earlier episodes – where Diane, red-head Diane, the real Diane, is waiting for him. They take a sec to confirm each others’ actuality, then The Lodge curtains fade.

Cut to the open road, desert-prairieland, where Coop and Diane are driving in silence. They approach a series of electrical towers. Diane breaks the silence, asking Coop if he’s sure he wants to do this. He is. She makes a vague reference to uncertain consequences, but Coop says they’re “at that point.” He notes they’ve come exactly 430 miles. That would put them in Montana if going east, BC if going north, northeastern Oregon if going south, and the Pacific Ocean if going west. Coop pulls over. Diane implores him to think about it again, but he gets out, walks toward the line of towers. He intuits the atmosphere, sensing he’s in the right spot, then checks his watch. It is all aligning. He returns to the car, a nice classic number. Coop asks Diane for a kiss, saying ominously that once they “cross” it could all be different. They kiss. Then Coop slowly rolls the car forward until SNAP CRACKLE POP they’re cruising down the highway at night. Time jump, space jump, both, neither, your guess is as good as mine.

They find a motel, pull in. Coop goes into the lobby while Diane waits in the car. While there, she sees a double of herself step out from behind a column. Neither Diane says anything, they just stare plainly, as if expecting one another. Coop comes out and this other Diane has vanished. Nothing is said of her. Coop shows the remaining Diane to their room.

Once there, Coop has her turn off the light and come to him; then they get it on. It’s a lengthy, intimately uncomfortable scene like watching your favorite aunt and uncle together, and it seems that way to her too, as distressed as she looks though she’s in a dominant position. He, on the other hand, is stone-faced, Mr.-C-like, and based on his commanding personality shift, we know he was right, things are different now that they’ve crossed. Only not different in any way we’ve seen. She’s vulnerable but not weak, he’s strong but not cruel.

This change is confirmed the next morning when Coop wakes, alone, and finds a note addressed to him as “Richard.” And now we all know what’s coming, and we know we’ve been duped by not one, but two red herrings. It’s a Dear John letter from Diane, who signs it “Linda.” These are the people Coop was told to beware, himself and Diane fractured into alternate personalities. A masterful manipulation of expectations by Frost and Lynch.

Coop leaves the motel. Palm trees denote a new locale, and as he drives through town we see a sign for Odessa, Texas. He passes a place that makes him hit the brakes and flip the blinker: a coffee shop named Judy’s. Yeah, too coincidental. He goes in and is served by a young, blonde waitress named Kristi. He asks if there’s another waitress there. Not today, Kristi tells him, then goes to serve a table of men down the way. These men, however, aren’t the honorable type and start harassing the pretty young waitress, which Coop naturally objects to. They don’t care for his objection and come over to tell him so, one of them pulling a piece in the process. Coop swiftly disarms him, kicks him in the balls, shoots one of his buddies in the foot and disarms the other. Again we note the distinction of Coop’s character. He’s got the deft, cold capability and confidence of Mr. C, but more of the moral compass of his old self. He has Kristi write down the address of this other waitress.

Coop goes to the address – which is by an electrical pole with the number 6 on it, just like the one in Fat Trout Trailer Park outside the trailer where Teresa Banks was murdered by BOB – and knocks on the door. On the other side? Laura Fucking Palmer all grown up, and for some reason speaking with a Southern accent. The accent is because she’s not Laura, or so she says, her name is Carrie Page, but when Coop asks if she remembers her father, her mother, she quivers a little, not like she’s hiding something but like she’s remembering something buried deep. He says he thinks she’s really Laura Palmer and wants to take her to Sarah. She agrees because she needs to get out of Dodge anyway. She invites him in to wait while she packs a bag and we see why she’s anxious to hit bricks: there’s a dead guy with a bullet hole through his head in the living room. Coop leaves it alone, there’s enough crazy shit going on. They hit the road.

Carrie and Coop drive through the night. She’s paranoid someone’s following them. There are lights on their tail, but Coop exits to avoid them. A little more comfortable now, she starts to doze, rambling as she does. “In those days, I was too young to know better.” Laura talking, Carrie, or both, we don’t know.

After a stop at a convenience store – a real one, relax – they continue towards Washington. For a finale, there are several extended sequences of silence, like Lynch had time to burn. I for one love it.

They enter Twin Peaks, navigate past the Double R into the neighborhoods. None of it is familiar to Carrie, not even the Palmer house. Dale parks and they get out of the car. Both seems equally wary, even Coop’s confidence seems shaken. He offers Carrie his hand. She takes it. Together they go to the front door.

He knocks. We’re expecting Sarah to answer, maybe even Leland, but instead we get a woman we don’t know who’s never heard of Sarah Palmer. Coop asks who she bought the house from. The woman checks with an unseen male inside and says Mrs. Chalfont. This, Peakies know, is the surname of the old woman and her grandchild from Fire Walk With Me, the pair who was seen in the room above the convenience store and who gave Laura a painting of the interior of that space. Coop then asks this woman her name: Alice Tremond. Tremond is the surname of the same pair when they were featured on Twin Peaks the original series as neighbors of Harold Smith. In the series, when Coop went with Donna to visit the Tremonds, another woman answered the door and said she’d never heard of them.

But the fact here remains that Coop didn’t find what he was expecting. Dumbfounded, he apologizes for intruding and he and Carrie walk back towards the car. In the street, though, Coop turns back towards the house, feels through the air like he’s trying to open an invisible door, then asks the panicked question Twin Peaks’ fans will be obsessively debating until the end of time:

“What year is this?”

Carrie doesn’t answer, possibly unsure herself She looks to her old house and faintly we hear Sarah scream her name. This makes Laura scream. The lights in the house all blink off, a strobe of electric blue light, and then blackness as the scream fades into echo.


And that’s it. That’s the end. Presumably forever, and intentional this time. Twin Peaks concludes on a note even more uncertain than Dale seeing BOB in his reflection, a point at which we literally don’t know what happened to anyone. Everything was resolved and nothing was, the story is closed but even more open to interpretation than before, and that is exactly as it should be.

For anyone doubting Lynch’s motivations, just look at the image he choses to close with as the final credits roll, a still of Laura whispering into Cooper’s ear in The Black Lodge, taken from episode one and repeated here in episode 18. This is a secret never to be told. So is Twin Peaks. The mystery has always been the thing, and to solve it in any satisfactory way would be to rob it of its power, its magic, its resonance. Twin Peaks ended exactly as it should have ended: with a new beginning.

Now, it’s not all satisfactory, even I will admit that. There were a few unanswered plotlines, the most egregious among them a resolution to the Audrey story. After such a teasing exit in episode 16, I never would have thought that was the last we’d see of Ms. Horne, but perhaps that’s why it was. And the billionaire who owned the glass box seen in episode one was never revealed, nor was the exact nature of said box. And “Judy,” again, no satisfactory answer. But again, if you were expecting neat and tidy resolutions to everything, you were watching the wrong show. Like life, the narrative of Lynch and Frost doesn’t synchronize solutions.

To try and form any poignant closing remarks here, now, would be foolish. The episodes are barely six hours old in my mind, my opinions of them nascent and still in need of scrutinous nurturing if they’re to grow into fully-formed things, but in the moment, I will say this. The only thing I ever personally expected from Twin Peaks: The Return was everything. I expected to be challenged, indulged, rewarded, confounded, amazed and terrified; I expected Lynch and Frost to give me exactly what they had given me the first time, something enduring, something evolving, something immortal and constantly in flux. Something, in short, I could make my own. We all share Twin Peaks and we all own it, it is as much made of our devotion as it is the words on the page or the images on screen. We are all The Dreamer, that’s how it’s always been, and Lynch and Frost our Sandmen. They planted the seed and when the dream faded we kept it alive for a decade, two, a quarter-century, in places like Wrapped in Plastic magazine, and countless message boards. We started festivals, we attended them, we forged a community of the faithful that kept the show alive when the rest of the world was content to move on. We were there when Lynch tweeted “That gum you like is going to come back in style” to announce the revival, we shouted in droves when it seemed like the director might be shuffled off the project, and we turned up not in record numbers but in rapt ones every Sunday night for the last four months. We made The Return happen by never faltering in our belief that the cast and crew could reunite and do exactly what it is they’ve done: reinvent television all over again.

Every second of the quarter-century wait was worth it, in my opinion, and the best part about being here at the end (minus the release of Frost’s novel Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier in October) is that there’s nowhere to go but everywhere.

I’ll see you out there in the woods.

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