David Lynch is a great writer and director. I loved Wild at Heart, the 1990 film about Sailor Ripley (Nicolas Cage) and Lula Pace Fortune (Laura Dern). I haven’t seen it in over twenty years, but I remember the crazy dialogue, fantastic performances by Cage and Dern, Wizard of Oz references, and another scene stealing role for Willem Dafoe. But I didn’t give Twin Peaks a chance, despite being a fan of Kyle MacLachlan. In those pre-Netflix, -Tivo, and -DVD days, it was easier to miss a show and not catch up.
Since moving to the Pacific Northwest about nine months ago, I’ve gained an appreciation for how much this region likes its Twin Peaks lore. In October 2016 I went to author Mark Frost’s appearance at The Elliott Bay Book Company, where a packed house was on hand to listen to him discuss his book The Secret History of Twin Peaks and the show. He also read from his book and played audio files from the characters. The audio files were reminiscent of the old crime programs you’d hear on NPR on the weekends. The dialogue was eccentric and excellent.
Tonight I took another step toward being a PNW and Seattle resident. I headed to Lost Lake Cafe for a Twin Peaks viewing. I was determined to get a slice of cherry pie. I got there a few minutes late, though, and it was standing room only in the restaurant and in the bar. So I stood and got a beer. There was some confusion after the first episode about whether Lost Lake would also be playing the second episode. It didn’t seem like it, and a few people settled their tabs and headed home.
I moved over to the restaurant side and found a seat at the counter. I haven’t got much of a sweet tooth, but I wanted that piece of cherry pie. The staff was swamped, busily taking orders, serving food, and clearing tabs. I listened as they informed one another of the cherry pie supplies. Things didn’t look good. They were down to about their last two slices. I ordered one, but no luck. Instead, I got the marionberry pie as a consolation prize. In this game there are no losers. That was a damn fine piece of marionberry pie.
Have I become a Twin Peaks convert? We’ll see. I’ve already broken the cardinal rule of not starting a series mid-way through, not to mention 20 plus years after its cliffhanger season 2 ending. Still, I’ll give it a shot. I love the dialogue and the settings. I could do without some of the supernatural extra dimension aspects of it, but given that it’s David Lynch, I shouldn’t jump to any hasty conclusions.