TWIN PEAKS: “The Missing Pieces”

I only own a blu-ray player so I could watch the new Twin Peaks box set, specifically so I could see the 90 minutes of deleted scenes from David Lynch’s prequel film, Fire Walk With Me.

First of all, this box set is great. The original episodes look awesome, and for the first time ever, they’ve included the “previously on” and “on the next Twin Peaks" segments, the latter of which were really an essential part of the series when it originally aired. (They start out fairly conventionally but by Season Two, they are increasingly cryptic little tone poems— snatches of audio that make no sense out of context played over a series of still images that reveal nothing. They are essentially spoiler-free teases that suit the mood of the series wonderfully.)

I haven’t pored over everything but I’ve read that the box set failed to include the Japanese coffee commercials that Lynch did after the series ended, which is I guess my only real complaint. I jokingly consider them canon— a Season 3 in miniature— and the official “end” to the Twin Peaks saga. 

But the main attraction here is The Missing Pieces, which is basically a Wake Up, Ron Burgandy-style feature film edited by David Lynch by cobbling together 90 minutes of the best scraps from FWWM.

How is it? Well, it doesn’t “wrap anything up” but I didn’t expect it to. What it does do is offer a return to Twin Peaks, and it revisits some characters I thought I’d never see again, and that’s more than any fan has any right to expect.

There is another special feature produced for this release that has Lynch interviewing the Palmer family in the present day, and while it is interesting, it also points out why you “can’t go home again.” Those fans clamoring for another season of Twin Peaks or another movie will find that the moment has probably passed. FWWM was really one last chance to grab some of that magic while those characters all looked and felt the same, and to return to that world now would probably offer diminishing returns. (Having said that, I still would wish to see the return of Agent Cooper in some form or another. Kyle MacLachlan is still awesome and seeing Old Cooper would be fun in any context. Am I contradicting myself? Perhaps.)

But that’s what is so great about The Missing Pieces: it is a chance to see some of these characters one last time, and there are some great moments. There are scenes with Andy and Lucy and Sheriff Truman here that would have been irrelevant to the main plot of FWWM, but are a delight to see here. It’s nice to see Pete and Josie and the old man from the bank who appeared in the series finale, arguing about wood. There is a scene with Leland Palmer arriving home at night that, had it been included in the film, would have been the single scariest scene in it. There is even a little more David Bowie, which is fun but still manages to make almost no sense to the viewer.

A handful of Twin Peaks actors opted not to appear in FWWM, and they probably would have been on the cutting room floor if they had. When the movie bombed and most of their fellow cast members were cut out, they probably breathed a sigh of relief that they weren’t involved, but I wonder if they now feel a twinge of regret that they aren’t a part of this final grace note for the world of Twin Peaks

I’ve never been a big fan of FWWM, though some people love it. For me, it was always a little too unpleasant— it took things that were left unspoken in the TV series and it put them front and center, and I felt like it lacked some of the mystery and wonder of the series. But I like a lot of its parts— the opening scenes with Chris Isaak and Kiefer Sutherland are great, and there are bits and pieces throughout that were enough to scratch the itch.

But in some ways, I think The Missing Pieces is more satisfying to me. It’s not a “movie” but it is an experience, and I think it functions like the endnotes in Infinite Jest— there is a lot there, and it illuminates what came before it. I feel like these are more than just outtakes or alternate versions, to be viewed as curios, these are now canon— these things happened and are part of the Twin Peaks story.

Just like that 3rd season where they drank a lot of Japanese coffee.

30/7/14, 28 notes
justincopp: I ask this as someone who's never seen a single frame of Twin Peaks, but how do you feel about Twin Beaks from Sesame Street's Monsterpiece Theatre?


Honestly?  I’m always a little weirded out when Sesame Street does these kinds of parodies of very Adult shows.  Someone could prove me wrong on this, but I believe it is very much a post-Henson development, doing parodies of shows like Twin Peaks or Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

It’s probably my natural inclination to be a little bit skeptical of Muppetwork since the passing of Jim Henson, and I’m probably guilty of some hypocrisy here, but I think for an “all ages” show like Sesame Street to be dabbling in references to shows that feature SUCH dark subject matter is a little creepy. 

I mean, L&O: SVU is specifically a show that deals with sex crimes, so I find it a little bit hard to take when the world of Sesame Street does even a harmless parody.

(Having said that, a lot of my very favorite things contain stuff that parents ‘get’ that go right over kids’ heads— Pixar movies, The Simpsons, Rocky & Bullwinkle, Looney Tunes…  I think there’s just something specific to the innocence of Sesame Street, I don’t like it referencing stuff like Twin Peaks or SVU.) 

It wouldn’t even bother me as much if it was The Muppet Show doing it. I guess I just think of Sesame Street as a safe place.

J.D. said: 

"Come on, these harmless tips of the hat to parents are what make sesame street so great. There is no way this could “harm” kids or make sesame street less safe. If anything, it’s exposing them to cultural tropes without having to actually be exposed."

And here’s my answer: sure, I sort of acknowledged this in my answer and I never directly said this would cause any harm to kids. I think it’s fair to be creeped out by it, though.

Twin Peaks is a show that has a main plot that involves almost every manner of sordid cultural taboo and features some of the darkest and most disturbing subject matter imaginable. L&O: SVU is a show about sex crimes, full stop.

I also think it would be weird and creepy if Sesame Street did a parody of the 1970s porno movie Deep Throat, or of Henry: Portrait Of A Serial Killer. There are just a lot of things in the culture that Sesame Street could choose to parody, and I find it creepy that no one in the room said, “okay, fine, let’s do a Law & Order parody but let’s drop the “Special Letters Unit” gag because it is very specifically making this a reference the Law & Order show that is about sex crimes, and that’s weird.” Yes, I know that the “Special Letters Unit” helps clarify Sesame Street’s “take” on L&O, but it also makes it a direct reference to the show about sex crimes.

I also think it’s weird that they would parody Mad Men, too, but it’s slightly less creepy because a lot of its darker themes are sort of murkier and most people just think of it as a harmless show about a 60s ad agency, it’s not a show about a teenage girl who was raped and murdered and wrapped in plastic. I’m saying this as a fan of Twin Peaks who has watched the occasional SVU episode: those are questionable things for Sesame Street to have parodied, and it weirds me out, and what I mean by Sesame Street being a “safe place” is that it should be, let’s say, at least two degrees away from shows that deal overtly with incest. Sesame Street had dealt directly with a lot of heavy themes, but they famously never aired the episode that dealt with divorce because it was too upsetting to kids. I assume they have never even attempted to do a show about incest, but they have spoofed shows that deal directly with incest, and I’m saying maybe it’s less weird to spoof something else, regardless of how much of a fun thing it might be for parents to see those spoofs?

SPOILER ALERT FOR THE MOVIE CHINATOWN 

GO WATCH CHINATOWN AND THEN COME BACK AND READ THIS PARAGRAPH:

I’d also be weirded out if they did a parody of Chinatown and used the “She’s my sister! She’s my daughter! She’s my sister AND my daughter!” scene to help explain something innocuous about sisters and daughters, even though I’m sure they could do a harmless one that would be fine for kids and only remind savvy parents that Faye Dunaway’s character gave birth to her own father’s child.

All I’m saying is that if I was in the room for that idea being pitched, I’d be the one saying “Hey guys, how about we spoof one of, say, a hundred OTHER things than that, because we are Sesame Street and we are not required to spoof everything. Let’s avoid the ones about rape & incest.” 

But that’s just me! I’m just weirded out by it, and I’m sure there are things I’m fine with that are not consistent with this. And I do believe I’m more or less right that this stuff didn’t happen when Jim Henson was calling the shots, although maybe I’m just not aware of an example of a Sesame Street parody of Rosemary’s Baby or The Accused or something. 

I’m sure they could do a terrific 50 Shades Of Grey parody that would go viral but I’ll bet that they won’t for a lot of the same reasons that I’ve cited for why I find it creepy that they did Twin Peaks and L&O: SVU.  But maybe I’m wrong and they WILL do a funny spoof of 50 Shades, and they’ll use it to teach about numbers and colors, and it’ll be absolutely fine but also unnecessary and it’ll weird me out a little!

Also: J.D. I don’t think these spoofs are “what made Sesame Street so great.” Other things made it great, and these are a more recent phenomenon that occurred in the post-Henson Elmo years. Sesame Street is still great and important and carries on Henson’s legacy, but these spoofs of TV shows are from the post-Simpsons era of South Park and Family Guy, they are an example of the show sort of rolling with the times a bit and I don’t associate these spoofs— which are not without their charms, for adults, sure— as what made Sesame Street great.

29/7/14, 11 notes

georgelucastalkshow:

Mike Doughty: “I did this initially for a piece by Daniel Fay and his fantastique Standard ToyKraft squad.”

This is the “Cantina Remix” that Mike Doughty was talking about during last night’s George Lucas Talk Show. It is bookended by Star Trek and Flash Gordon music.

29/7/14, 5 notes

"Harry, I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it. Don’t wait for it. Just let it happen." (OR: wait for decades and get really, really excited about 90 minutes of previously unseen footage.)

29/7/14, 31 notes

patrickcotnoir:

Great George Lucas Talk Show tonight with @thesheertruth, @benwarheit, @mike_doughty_! (at UCBeast)

(via ucbdifference)

28/7/14, 20 notes

George Lucas & Jar-Jar Binks do improv at this year’s Del Close Marathon. Jar-Jar is being Indiana Jones and George is being “that big boulder.” #improv #DCM16 @GLucasTalkShow @JarJarTalkTalk (at Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre)

27/7/14, 8 notes

georgelucastalkshow:

TOMORROW NIGHT ON THE GEORGE LUCAS TALK SHOW:

Ben Warheit from Late Night With Seth Meyers will be our guest!

Look at him in these GIFs, attempting to give an oversized check to Emperor Palpatine, who is carrying a scythe because he is a Dark Lord Of The Sith. (I think that’s the joke here.)

The George Lucas Talk Show • UCB East • 8PM

#JulyThe28thBeWithYou

(Source: latenightseth)

27/7/14, 152 notes

georgelucastalkshow:

TOMORROW NIGHT ON THE GEORGE LUCAS TALK SHOW

SNL’s Sasheer Zamata will be our guest.

Her first name was inspired by Star Trek. We’re gonna get into it.

The George Lucas Talk Show • UCB East • 8PM

#JulyThe28thBeWithYou

(Source: misspottah)

27/7/14, 330 notes
96 plays

georgelucastalkshow:

Mike Doughty: “Down On The River By The Sugar Plant”

Tomorrow night on The George Lucas Talk Show, our musical guest is Mike Doughty.

UCB East • 8PM

#JulyThe28thBeWithYou

(Source: hkuuu)

27/7/14, 18 notes

gifintcgs:

TCGS #86: Beyonce!
This episode: Flawless

Classic Mudon. 95 percent of the time she is one of the most responsible and level-headed people I know, but watch out for that remaining 5%.

GIF #4 is my favorite, as Mudon covers her mouth as if that will somehow prevent her from having said what she just said on live television.

26/7/14, 29 notes

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