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TWIN PEAKS’ Latest Episode Awakens the Sleepers

“The Sleeper has awakened!”

That’s a quote from David Lynch’s much maligned big screen adaptation of Dune, but it could just as easily apply to the events of the penultimate episode of Twin Peaks: The Return. And it’s not just referring to one “sleeper,” but three.

“I am the FBI.”

After sticking a fork in a light socket in the previous episode, Dougie Jones (Kyle MacLachlan) winds up in a coma in a Las Vegas hospital. He’s surrounded by his family–his wife Janey-E (Naomi Watts) and their kid, Sonny Jim–his boss Bushnell Mullins, and his new mob friends the Mitchum brothers (along with their showgirl trio of Candie, Sandie, and Mandie). One by one, the visitors are drawn away (by phone calls from FBI, who witness the explosive demise of Mr. C’s hoodlums in front of the Jones house; and, in the case of Bushnell, the same mysterious humming sound we heard at the Great Northern) and MIKE, the One-Armed Man, appears on a chair next to Dougie’s bed. At last, Dougie jots up and immediately and pulls out his breathing tubes.

“You are now awake,” MIKE says.
“One hundred percent,” Dougie says. Except he’s not Dougie anymore. He’s Special Agent Dale Cooper once again.
“Finally,” MIKE replies. We’re right there with ya, MIKE. 

MIKE tells Cooper that Mr. C is afoot and gives Cooper the Owl Cave ring. Cooper then asks, “Do you have the seed?” Mike holds up a tiny gold ball, which as you may recall, is what the original Dougie Jones turned into when he entered the Black Lodge, when Evil Coop failed to return. Cooper tells MIKE he needs him to make another one, and gives him a hair sample.

Cooper then springs into full-on Cooper mode, commanding Bushnell to get him the Mitchum Brothers on the phone to gas up their plane for a flight to Spokane, Washington, and giving him a note to relay to Gordon Cole. When Bushnell asks an exiting Cooper, “What about the FBI?” we are treated to a most triumphant moment: “I am the FBI,” Cooper says, as the Twin Peaks theme plays. I’m not sure we could get more nostalgic feels than we did at this scene.

Dale Cooper is finally on the way back to Twin Peaks, where we predict he will come face to face with his evil doppelgänger once and for all. In earlier episodes of The Return, MIKE suggested that the two Coopers can’t exist in the same space at the same time – “One of you must die” he said. It’s hard to imagine that Lynch and Frost will allow evil to win in the end this time around, especially since the original series ended with Coop’s evil doppelganger on the loose, and “evil winning,” so to speak. As getting Ed and Norma together after so long has proven, Lynch can be very sentimental himself many times, so I doubt that this Twin Peaks ends on the same sad note as the last one.

“No knock, no doorbell.”

Back in South Dakota, Diane (Laura Dern) receives a text from Evil Cooper that requests a set of coordinates, which she delivers. Evil Cooper’s reply reads “:-) ALL,” then goes to see Agents Gordon Cole, Albert, and Tammy. A shaken Diane proceeds to tell them about the night Cooper came to visit her 20-odd years back, all the while concealing a gun from the three. While she was elated to see him, he only wanted to grill her about what had been going on at the FBI. Diane then relays a tearful, mortifying memory of how he raped her.

Afterwards, he took her to “an old gas station” (or should we say, an old convenience store?). She looks again at the message Evil Cooper texted her (with a new time stamp–perhaps a second message) before breaking down further, admitting that she just sent him the coordinates to the sheriff’s station: “I sent him those coordinates because… I’m not me.” She reaches for her gun, but Albert shoots first, killing her. As she dies, she is sucked up into the air, exactly like Laura Palmer was in the series’ first episode. Tammy is startled, realizing the Diane they’ve known has been a tulpa, or doppelgänger, all along.

Next, Diane appears in the Black Lodge, where MIKE tells her that she was manufactured. She then shrivels up, leaving only black smoke and a gold ball behind, apparently her “seed.” (Just like Dougie Jones did way back when.) Diane, it seems, finally realized she wasn’t ever really Diane at all, but it was all far too late.

Is the real Diane still out there, trapped in some other dimension? And if so, can Cooper rescue her? Is it possible that Naido, the eyeless woman who Cooper met in the White Lodge, who is now in our world, back at the Twin Peaks’ sheriff’s station having been rescued, is the real Diane? So far, doppelgangers and tulpas look identical to the person they were created from, but Naido backwards is “O-Dian.” Can that be a coincidence? And if Janey-E is Diane’s half sister, did she arrange for Dougie to meet Janey-E and marry him under Evil Coop’s orders? Hopefully the finale will give us closure on the Diane story.

“Don’t you just love this music? Isn’t it too dreamy?”

And finally, our third sleeper finally seems to come to. Since Audrey Horne (Sherilyn Fenn) first appeared on the series, she’s been arguing in the same room with her husband Charlie about going to the Roadhouse to look for someone named Billy. She finally arrives there with Charlie, and at that moment she sets foot in the Road House, Eddie Vedder (of all people) starts playing to a crowded room.

After his song is done, the Roadhouse MC announces: “It’s time for… Audrey’s dance!” Suddenly, Audrey’s Angelo Badalementi theme music from the original shows begins to play, the floor clears, and Audrey does her same dreamy dance to the jazz tune as she once did when she was a teenage girl, in a callback to the original series’ seminal third episode.

Next, two dudes get into a brawl, and Audrey runs towards her husband, terrified. Next thing we know, Audrey awakens in front of a mirror in a stark white room, in what looks to be a hospital gown. Was Audrey indeed a coma all his time, and like her beloved Agent Cooper, has the sleeper finally awakened? Or is something else going on?

Earlier in the episode it was revealed that Richard Horne is indeed the offspring of Audrey and the Evil Coop, probably conceived when Audrey was first in her coma 25 years ago following the events of the original series finale. Whether or not she was in a coma, or is maybe in insane asylum being treated, is still up in the air. No matter where she’s been, Audrey Horne has not been in the same reality as everyone else has all this time. It also can’t be a coincidence that she is coming back to reality just at the same moment her “special Agent” does too.

In this, our second to last episode, we finally get what we’ve been wanting since Agent Cooper first appeared lying on a floor in Las Vegas. Not only that, but the truth behind Diane and Audrey’s situation has seemingly been revealed, as these two women, so very important to the life of Dale Cooper, finally awaken from their dream states. Will the real Diane emerge from the Lodge? Will Audrey now reunite with her “Special Agent?” Only one two hour episode left to answer some of these questions for all time.

What burning questions do you hope get answered in the series’ two hour finale? Be sure to let us know in the comments below.

Images: Showtime


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