Wednesday, May 10, 2017

It is happening again. It is happening again. (Twin Peaks Episode 14)

Lonely Souls - Twin Peaks Episode 14 (Air date Nov 10 1990)

Well it has all been leading to this huh?
As I said when I started doing these posts these are not recaps of the episodes, you can get those in 1001 other places on the web. These are my impressions of a series I loved 25 years ago after re-watching it today, so many things are going to be glossed over.
And there pretty much isn't anything in this episode that isn't overshadowed by this guy.

Ep 14 is what the series to this point has been heading towards, written by Frost and directed by Lynch it is perhaps the best of the whole series. It's tight, effective and gripping all the way through. It has great spoonfuls of Lynch's trademark surrealism atop the solid framework of Frost's script-writing. In a wonderfully two sided revelation, we the audience are given the real killer (Leland) while Harry and Cooper arrest their #1 suspect Ben Horne. The whole episode is full of great scenes and amazing, sometimes perplexing imagery. The scene with MIKE inspecting people at the Great Northern is great, with Ben bursting in at the right moment. AND WHY ARE ALL THE NAVY PEOPLE BOUNCING BALLS? Even the super Nadine scene is fine, understated and a little terrifying as she shatters a milkshake glass casually and doesn't notice the glass in her hand whilst telling everyone how happy she is. (Kind of shows where this plot could have gone with a little more care)

But the centre of the episode is the reveal and the murder of Maddy Ferguson. Sarah Palmer is drugged while the old time record player ticks at the end of the disk, crawling downstairs and seeing a Pale horse in a spotlight as she passes out. The horse has only appeared twice so far, each time when Sarah was drugged by Leland prior to murdering Laura and then Maddy. The Pale horse hasn't shown up enough to have much more meaning built into it besides Death or Drug use, but in the new series you never know...

So many of the shots in this episode are amazing, I could fill this post with just stills and it would still be a worthy post on the series. The mise en scene is great as well, great uses of pan shots and camera movements, use of light and shadow both in the murder scene and the roadhouse scene, the switch between the gritty mundane actions of Lealand and the slowed down surreal images of BOB killing Maddy whilst haloed by a spotlight. The scene is both amazing and terrible, few more brutal murders have been put on TV, it grips you with Maddy's fear and BOB's hunger for it. While many film gimmicks are used in it's depiction, the murder itself is simple, brutish and nasty, a vastly more significant event than any of the elaborate murders of a show like "Hannibal"or the CG laced gore of "The Walking Dead". As I noted last time, Maddy isn't really even much of a character but her death seems so real, sad and horrible all at the same time. 

A woman is murdered here, and we feel it. The whole town feels it in fact, as the psychic shockwaves of BOB fulfilling his promise seem to echo throughout the rest of the episode's scenes. This is not a beautiful death, or a puzzle to be solved. A woman is dead, and the script and production hammer that home in no uncertain terms, we watch a terrible act and not only witness it but feel it as well. Lynch's direction and flourishes do not glorify or dwell on the murder, they express the terrifying events of a domestic setting turned to evil. From the clacking of the turntable, to the picture frame Maddy's head is driven into.

Meanwhile the Log Lady tells Cooper that there are Owls at the Roadhouse. Cooper, the Log Lady and Harry go, and basically sit down and watch Julie Cruise perform. (Not a bad way to spend an evening tbh) Donna and James are there as well as Bobby and Jerry. Cooper then sees the Giant who tells him that "It is Happening again". It is almost as if the Log Lady and the woods are telling Cooper that they have the wrong man arrested...