Twin Peaks: The Return – Episode 14 Breakdown, Thoughts, and Analysis

Part 14
Written by Mark Frost & David Lynch
Directed by David Lynch

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We begin with FBI Director Gordon Cole returning a call to Twin Peaks Police Department. He has an exchange with Lucy where she assures him she does go home and has gone a vacation; the department is not her home. On the horn with Frank, Cole learns about the missing pages of Laura Palmer’s diary and the implication that there are two Dale Coopers out and about in the world. Now, Cole knows they cannot trust Doop when they next cross paths.

Albert Rosenfeld sits down and tells Tamara Preston the story of a case from the 1970s. A woman named Lois Duffy went missing and is tracked down to a hotel room in Olympia, Washington. A shot is fired and two young agents, Gordon Cole and Phillip Jeffries barge in. They find Lois Duffy bleeding out on the floor dying while another Lois Duffy stands to watch aghast. The dying Lois utters the phrase, “I am like the blue rose,” dies and then vanishes. The other Lois Duffy is arrested and tried for the murder but hangs herself. Preston cues into the blue rose phrase and says it means something that is unnatural, conjured, a tulpa.

A Tulpa is a Tibetan concept of a living thoughtform, a being conjured out of the subconscious of multiple living minds. Dougie Jones is a tulpa, brought into existence by Doop, and strengthened in life by Janey-E, Sonny Jim, Bushnell Mullins, and more. In some online discussions, Slender Man is presented as a tulpa, a fictional creation that some people believe has become manifest through collective belief. So the Lois Duffy who died was not a doppelganger, they are natural beings. The Lois Duffy who died was a tulpa, created possibly by Duffy herself, maybe from experimenting with the Lodges like Bill Hastings and Ruth Davenport.

If Blue Rose means tulpa, then we have to ask why Gordon Cole told Chet Desmond and Sam Stanley they were on a blue rose case when they went to Deer Meadow. What connection did Teresa Banks have with tulpas? Was Teresa a tulpa of Laura Palmer? Leland does say “You look just like my Laura” at one point. I doubt we’ll ever get clear answers and connections on this matter, but it is something to think about.

Cole, Albert, and Preston call in Diane Evans and query her about the last evening she saw Doop and if he spoke about Major Briggs. She reiterates that she doesn’t want to talk about it, but they prod her, and she says he did talk about Briggs. Albert reveals the wedding ring found in Briggs’ stomach bearing an inscription that includes the names Dougie and Janey-E. This is when we learn that Janey-E is Diane’s estranged half-sister. The agents seem to agree that Las Vegas will be their next stop. After a quick call to the Vegas FBI office, a search for this Janey-E and her Dougie begins.

Diane leaves, and Cole then shares the information about Laura’s diary and begins to recount a dream he had the previous night. He was in Paris on a case and sitting at a table in a cafe with the actress Monica Bellucci. Dale Cooper is there, but Cole cannot see his face. Monica says “We are like the dreamer who dreams and then lives inside the dream. But who is the dreamer?” She points for Cole to look behind himself. When he does, Cole sees the scene from Fire Walk With Me where Cooper is sharing information about a dream he had. Phillip Jeffries, having gone off the grid at this point, appears and looks accusingly at Cooper asking, “Do you know who that is there?” Cole seems to be making connections about this moment and the events going on in the present.

A dream can be a plan, and all of the characters during this mini-series are unaware they are following the plans of the Doppelganger Cooper. From the moment he escaped the Black Lodge 25 years ago, he has been putting this plan into motion. First, by visiting Major Briggs and burning down the tracking station and then by seeing Diane on that mysterious night. Everyone is being moved forward by Doop’s plans; even Richard Horne is now in the orbit of the evil presence at the core of this story. Doop has been the dreamer, which is why the world has fallen into such dismay. Before, Cooper dreamed, and we had the Twin Peaks we remember with nostalgia. The end of this story will be about whose dream can save everyone, and I am betting that it will be Laura Palmer’s.

I think we can see the effect of character’s dreams in the series so far. Cooper acting as Dougie is now the dreamer in Las Vegas and we see Janey-E and Sonny Jim’s life improving in new ways every week. The Lucky 7 Insurance company has benefited from the dream of Cooper, and so have the Mitchums. If the beings of the Black Lodge, or at least some of them, benefit from garmonbozia (pain and sorrow) then we can understand why removing Cooper from the board was so necessary. Doop’s dream of despair empowers them.

Back at Twin Peaks HQ, Chad is ambushed and cuffed, the rest of the force already knowing about his involvement with the drug trade across the border. Then Truman, Hawk, Andy, and Bobby head out to Jack Rabbit’s Palace. Bobby talks about playing in the woods with his dad, and they journey forward.

Fog rolls out of the forest, and we see they are at the entrance of the White Lodge. A stone bowl inset in the ground holds an opaque white liquid, the parallel to the scorched engine oil that sits before the red curtains of the Black Lodge. Naido lies there naked. She was the eyeless woman Cooper encountered in Part 3, who sacrificed her place in the White Lodge to create the proper electrical current to send the agent back into the material plane. Andy is the first to check on her but then a portal forms in the sky overhead, taking him into it.

Andy sits in the same chair Cooper sat in during the very first scene of The Return. The Giant sits down across from him and reveals his true name, The Fireman. The Fireman places a wooden pinecone-like object in Andy’s hands, and smoke billows forth creating images. We see The Mother/The Experiment and her moment of birthing Bob and other entities. The burnt woodsmen are milling about the convenience store, and we see the “Got a Light?” man from Part 8. We see Laura Palmer, flanked by two angels and then an image of Naido laying where they found her. Cooper is split into two beings. Then Andy is holding Naido’s hand. Andy positions Lucy to look off camera down a hallway. Finally, the utility poles marked with a ‘6’ and the electrical crackling.

Let us try to break these images apart. The Mother and burnt men all seem to say there are many evil entities beyond and above Bob so beware. Laura flanked by *two* angels juxtaposed with the splitting of Cooper makes me think Laura herself may have been split. In between, we are shown Naido laying in the glen before the White Lodge. I believe Naido is some aspect of Laura Palmer, broke apart. Who is the other angel? Candy in Las Vegas. The Mitchums seem to have stumbled upon her, and she seems similarly disoriented like Cooper as Dougie. The image of Andy holding Naido’s hand tells him to protect her, and in the future, Lucy will play a significant role. Naido seems to be trying to communicate later so what ever she is trying to say is important and something we need to know. Lucy is the one you have to speak with to get to the officers in the police department. Lucy may be the one that can bring Naido’s message to the right people.

Andy emerges from the White Lodge markedly changed. In many ways, he is exemplifying traits of the Holy Fool. In Christian mythology, certain people are seen as insane or simple minded by the rest of society, yet possess the ability to understand vast cosmic knowledge. Andy has always been played off as a simple minded, overly emotive man child, yet it was inevitable that he would be the one tasked with guarding Naido and knowing what the threat is to come.

Naido put in holding cell for safety, Andy stating that people are coming to kill her. Chad yells at Andy, who ignores him and walks off with Lucy. Then we have a strange drunk, dripping blackish liquid from his mouth, looking badly beat up. He seems to mimic Naido and Chad, which drives Chad up the wall, but I wonder if he is talking to Naido in whatever language she speaks. Is this Drunk a Black Lodge entity?

Outside the loading dock behind the Great Northern, we find James Hurley and his coworker Freddie Sykes. They are both security guards for the hotel and taking a short break from their rounds. It’s James’ birthday, and he wants to know the story behind Freddie’s blue rubber glove he regularly wears. Freddie tells a strange tale of being pulled into a portal in an alleyway, floating before The Fireman, and being told to find this one particular glove that would give him immense strength in this hand. He is told to travel to Twin Peaks where he will find his destiny. James is blown away by this story and goes to check on the furnace/basement area. We hear the ringing that was driving Ben Horne and Beverly crazy, and it seems to be coming from behind a particular door.

If all of this wasn’t a big enough doozy, we get to what ended up being the shocker of the night. Sarah Palmer ends up at a bar, having a drink by herself. A sleazy type approaches her, and she tries to dismiss him. He becomes more verbally aggressive, using slurs and threatening her. At this point, she removes her face to reveal something inhuman, with a proboscis jutting out. The image changes to a hand, the spiritual finger blackened and then a smile, which fans online have identified as Laura’s. She then bites out the man’s jugular, with no one having seen. She proceeds to scream, feigning shock and denying any involvement despite the bartender’s suspicions.

Sarah Palmer is the little girl from New Mexico in Part 8. The jutting proboscis was seen in the frog-moth creature that crawled into the little girl’s mouth. We know the Lodge entities do not exist along the path of linear time, so there is a possibility, knowing the importance of Laura, they send something to preemptively disturb those events by infecting her mother. Their plan to kill her using Leland/Bob failed so now the Mother took charge. Laura’s dream is the one that can end the feasting of garmonbozia (pain and sorrow), so this is an attempt to stop her. She says in Part 1 that she is not dead, meaning Bob only killed a doppelganger or tulpa of Laura somehow. The real Laura’s soul was spared by putting on the Owl Ring and being brought to the One-Armed Man.

In this episode, we learn a story of two identical people, one who dies and vanishes. When Ray wore the Owl Ring last week and was killed he disappeared, and his body appeared in the Red Room. When Dougie Jones died, he wore the ring and appeared in the Red Room. In Fire Walk With Me, the One-Armed Man begs Laura to take the ring, and she does before Bob kills her. Teresa Banks was also photographed wearing the Owl Ring. I believe Laura Palmer did not die at the hands of her father. Physically, maybe, but metaphysically her soul is rescued, and she lived in the Red Room, protected by the future self of Dale Cooper. That is until Part 1 of The Return. The Arm and The One-Armed Man express some corrupting presence is in The Red Room. Later, Laura sees something off screen, screams and is torn away. Laura is the dreamer who can end the feeding frenzy of the Black Lodge entities, and Dale Cooper will bring her back into this world. Laura will have to save Sarah Palmer from the evil inside her.

The Roadhouse scene this week felt the most significant of any of them. Megan sits across from Sofie who is admonishing her for spending too much time at “the nuthouse”. Sofie also questions where Megan got her sweater implying shoplifting. Then we find out Megan’s mom has been seeing Billy and they were the last two to see the man since he vanished. One night, they are in the kitchen when out the window they see Billy leap over a six-foot fence. He barges into the house, gushing blood from his nose and mouth. He doesn’t say anything but runs back out of the house and into the darkness of the night. Megan and her mom were shaken up. Strangely, Megan can’t recall if her uncle was or was not there. Sofie then asks as the music becomes darkly ominous what is the name of Megan’s mother. Megan seems to pause and then says “Tina.”

Tina is the name of a woman Audrey demanded her husband Charlie call. She said Tina was the last woman to see Billy and also didn’t want to talk to her herself. Despite not seeing Audrey outside of her home, it appears she is not in some coma hallucination and is taking part in the present day events. However, there is still something significantly wrong with her mind. The mention of the nuthouse stuck out to me, what is the place the women are referring to? Why did Sofie ask for the name of Megan’s mother? It bore no significance to the story unless Sofie is trying to make a connection between another event and the identity of Megan’s mom. Sofie seemed to be probing for particular information, and the music cue implies that Sofie is not a good person. Both my wife and I were convinced Megan was about to say ‘Audrey, ’ and from a quick survey online a lot of other viewers did too. That means it was likely that Lynch and company anticipated this and knew they were subverting those expectations. The big question would why would they want us to think it was Audrey?

This mind-blowing episode caps off with a performance of “Wild West” by Lissie.

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