Politics: On to the real news: Oh yes! Bring back Twin Peaks!
Published by: Dan Calabrese on Thursday January 3rd, 2013
By DAN CALABRESE - That gum you like is going to come back in style.
UPDATE: Rob here, and yes, if this turns out to be true, I'd be just as excited as Dan. But Twin Peaks fans have heard these rumors every few years since the movie came out in the 90's, so I'm not getting my hopes up. Still, it's almost "25 years later...."
It was Rob who told me about this yesterday, so I'm a little surprised he didn't beat me to this piece. But hey buddy, if you want to write about Mitch McConnell while I tackle the fate of Cooper in the Black Lodge, you go nuts.
Where the rumor started I am not exactly sure, but there was a lot of speculation going around yesterday that David Lynch is in serious talks with at least one network - possibly NBC - to bring Twin Peaks back to television in the sort of series revival that TNT has done so successfully with Dallas. Could it really happen? Rob is cruelly tempering my enthusiasm even as I write this, informing me that co-producer Mark Frost issued some sort of non-denial denial on Twitter, although Frost certainly did not dispense with the notion that something is up.
Oh, boy, do I want this to happen. Twin Peaks was simply the best thing that has ever been on television. The writing. The atmosphere. The character quirks. The subtleties. There have been a lot of good TV series that broke ground, challenged boundaries, changed paradigms. But none have done so as powerfully as Twin Peaks.
And its ending was as unjust as it was torturous. Leaving Cooper trapped in the Black Lodge while his body emerged under the possession of BOB, maniacally yelping, "How's Annie?" while toothpaste spewed into the sink and blood poured from his forehead . . . you cannot end a series with a cliffhanger like that! Of course, I was more than a little disappointed when Lynch made a feature film that could have addressed Cooper's fate, but chose instead to do a prequel to the TV series dealing with the events leading up to Laura Palmer's death. I liked the film but I didn't need to see it. I wanted a resolution to the series cliffhanger and Lynch punted the opportunity to give it to us.
But can Twin Peaks work today? Despite the rumor focusing on NBC, I would be very surprised if it ended up there or on any other broadcast network. Just look at ABC's knee-jerk decision to cancel the show in response to the ratings decline of Season 2. Broadcast networks need to maintain huge audiences. Twin Peaks would have a loyal audience but probably not a large one.
As well as Dallas has worked on TNT, you have to think a channel like it, AMC or USA could be a perfect fit. They're not so niche that you're producing a show hardly anyone sees, but they don't need to maintain the big numbers you expect on ABC, NBC, CBS or Fox.
The rumor is that Lynch would want as much of the original cast back as possible. I bet Kyle MacLachlan would sign on for sure. Since much of the action would necessarily take place in the Black Lodge where Cooper is still trapped, you'd want to bring back Michael Anderson as the Man From Another Place, and you might be able to work in Sheryl Lee as Laura Palmer, although it was strongly implied at the end of the feature film that she was freed from the Black Lodge and taken to the White Lodge. (Or maybe Heaven?)
I wonder if Heather Graham would return as Annie Blackburn. You'd have to think Michael Ontkean would be up for another run as Sheriff Harry S. Truman, and Michael Horse would be fantastic in a return as Deputy Hawk. And supposedly Catherine Coulson already said she would return as the Log Lady.
I do think, as happened with Dallas, you would have to get a good mix of new, younger characters. It's not like James Marshall and Dana Ashbrook are ancient, but in the universe of the series, 20 years have passed and the town would surely be populated with younger blood. Part of the rumor circulating is that a young female journalist somehow pieces together what happened to the real Cooper, so she would presumably be a new character played by an actor with no previous ties to the show.
Sadly, actors Don S. Davis (Major Briggs), Jack Nance (Pete Martell) and Frank Silva (BOB) have passed away, so their characters would not be able to be part of the show. Dealing with Cooper's fate without being able to involve BOB would be tricky indeed.
Personally, it's hard for me to stomach the idea that Cooper actually remained trapped in the Black Lodge all these years, but both the original show and the feature film indicated he would still be there 25 years later so I guess I can't say I wasn't warned.
Hey, I realize Twin Peaks was left with little but a cult following after the initial craze, and maybe I'm not talking to many fans of the show at all here on CainTV. Then again, we're getting ready to grow into a serious television network around here. Hmm. Maybe I need to be the one meeting with David Lynch and Mark Frost!