Twin Peaks Part 11: There’s Fire Where You’re Going
Director: David Lynch
Writers: Mark Frost
Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick, Dana Ashbrook
Review by Mary Cox
Something strikes me as odd about this whole Dougie plot line. We know he’s being heavily aided by Mike and his friends in the White Lodge, but there’s something not quite believable or right about what’s happening in the life of Dougie Jones. His narrow escape from death at the hands of the Mitchums, followed by a joyous pie-eating celebration where Cooper is championed as a hero, pushes the boundaries of believability. Considering that Dougie Coop has been Mr. Magoo-ing his way in and out of danger all season, it initially might seem kind of ridiculous at this point to assume that what we’re seeing isn’t really happening. However, this wouldn’t be the first time that Lynch has experimented with an idealized fantasy narrative as an escape for his characters that occupies the bulk of a story. I’m reminded a lot of the fantasy life of Betty and Rita in Mulholland Drive, or of the Pete Dayton segue in Lost Highway.
We’ve also already established that Mike and his Lodge friends have the ability to fabricate whole human lives and existences, so would it be that much harder to believe that Janey-E and Sonny Jim aren’t real? And while we’re on the topic of Dougie’s family: one moment that I’ve been dwelling on and can’t quite figure out is the scene in “Part 5: Case Files” is the scene where Dougie Cooper looks at Sonny Jim and cries. One take that I’ve seen on Dougie Cooper is that Lynch is making a statement on how society ignores depression and mental illness, which certainly has been mirrored by Twin Peaks fans who so desperately want Agent Cooper to “snap out of it” and get back to solving the mystery of the two Lodges.
A lot of other important things happened this episode, like Hawk going into detail about Nez Perce lore relating to the two lodges, most notably making yet another reference to garmonbozia in the “sick corn” pictograph and a hint to the possible meaning of the phrase “Fire Walk With Me.” The episode’s subtitle again comes from a conversation between Hawk and the Log Lady.
However, I think the key to unpacking all of this is going to come back to Lucy. In a seemingly throwaway moment when Lucy is talking to Hawk as she’s transferring his call, she makes a reference back to the chair argument she had with Andy. Every time we see Lucy, she’s making some kind of statement that connects to the notion of choice as a dividing point in time, or to the concept of time as a human construct. Every episode has one of these moments. With Lynch, nothing is a throwaway, everything matters, and if you want to know what’s going to happen, you need to pay attention. If you decide to do a mid-season rewatch (which I very highly encourage) pay special attention to Lucy’s
“Mary Cox is an entertainment writer from the United States. Her hobbies include making good beer and bad decisions, watching drag queens fight on the internet, and overanalyzing everything. Mary one day hopes to be the person shouting “World Star” in the back of a Waffle House brawl video. She is currently tolerating life in Toronto. You can follow her on Twitter at @M_K_Cox”