Twin Peaks Usenet Archive

Subject: Re: Various points gleaned from reviewing the TP extant TP episodes
From: (Curtis E. Dyreson)
Date: 1990-05-04, 16:56

From article <2341@media-lab.MEDIA.MIT.EDU>, by adamk@media-lab.MEDIA.MIT.EDU (Adam Kao):

> It takes significant effort to script and film every scene. There's
> plenty of time in the process to think about what's happening and
> generate creative details. There is NOT enough time to waste on
> making up irrelevant details. Most creative people invest so much
> time and effort in their creations that they think about every last
> detail, asking themselves again and again, "why am I putting this in?"
> "To confuse the audience" is not an acceptable answer. "To have fun"
> is certainly an acceptable answer. I hope the difference is clear.

The difference isn't clear at all. You seem to be arguing that Lynch
does not waste time on irrelevant details. If a detail is
there, it is there for a purpose. But what purpose? The catch-all
purpose you propose is "to have fun". But fun for whom? Shouldn't
it be fun for mystery-lovers? That seems to be the major interest
here on the net. Posters constantly offer theories based on the
observed "clues". Tossing in countless red herrings
(both intentional and unintentional - I don't believe Lynch has
"total" control over his creative genius) is a rather callous way for a
director to treat his detective-minded audience. If eventually, all
the clues come together and I am awed by the totality of revelations
about the murder and blown away by Lynch's seemingly confusing method
of story-telling I will be the first to bow down and hail Lynch as a genius.

But thus far, Twin Peaks seems to be nothing more than your typical
soap opera done to excess in spots? Take for instance the sandwich
scene in the 3rd episode. Was it anything more than deliberate,
juvenile, heavy-handed oddness? Did it advance the
plot or develop the characters or was it simply Lynch saying "Watch me take
a normal scene like a reunion and twist it."? Quite frankly, it was just
silly. Perhaps it was parody? Humor? If the purpose is unclear, the
effect is random. The only purpose that I can fathom it
served was that it set the mood. Twin Peaks just screams mood. It is
very stylish. In fact, it is nothing more than
images and music (and the occasional clever line). This is what
Jon pointed out (if I understood his post). But you might
as well watch MTV if that's all you want. Twin Peaks has a quality that
is usually reserved for European films. It is lyrical. It is entrancing
without being the slightest bit understandable or consistent.
Take the dream sequence. Fun to watch, but what does it mean?
The net has some fairly intelligent posters, but noone has
posted an interpretation that fits (though some have made
intriguing guesses). And this is from people who spend a good
portion of their lives playing the VCR game. Cooper said the
dream is a cipher; crack the code, solve the crime. But it looks
like you will have to solve the crime and then figure out what the
dream means. Again, everything may finally fit together and fit like
a Swiss clock, but I would be very suprised (happily though).

So I agree with you that Lynch is a stylistic genius but style without
substance is typical TV fare.

> Adam

Curtis E. Dyreson