So far we’ve had the sinister glass box, Dr. Jacoby’s delivery of shovels, even Ruth Davenport’s apartment could be viewed as a kind of locked box… Part 1’s preoccupation with boxes – and openings – continues as we return to the Twin Peaks Sheriff’s Department.
Following his late night phone call with Margaret Lanterman, Deputy Chief Hawk (Michael Horse) has been compelled to dredge up the past. We find him bringing boxes of case files into the conference room (note the prominently placed lamps again; Lynch loves a good lamp or three).
The two boxes he brings into the room and marked on all sides with red ‘X’s. This aesthetic of red splashed across official documents and their holders is something seen frequently in TV and film. I can’t help but think of the presentation of the titular ‘X-Files’ in the smash sci-fi series that followed hot on the heels of Twin Peaks – and which featured a great number of Twin Peaks alumni over the years, including Michael Horse. That the red on the boxes are in ‘X’ shapes furthers the connotation.
And its a reasonable line to draw. The X-Files were supernatural cases investigated by FBI agents; something not dissimilar to the Blue Rose Task Force that appears throughout Twin Peaks. And, as the first two seasons of Twin Peaks proved, the murder of Laura Palmer (documented in Hawk’s boxes) was inflected with supernatural occurrences. So the link between the two shows feels valid; something that will be knowingly acknowledged when we get to Part 4.
The boxes look old and dusty, as well they might having presumably been in storage for over 25 years; as close to solved as their contents could have been, given the nature of BOB (how do you prosecute a pan-dimensional manifestation of evil that preys on the vulnerable like a parasite?).
Re-awakening the show – bringing it out of creative stasis – means spending time re-awakening the town, its inhabitants… and the memories entombed within. It’s an ongoing process throughout The Return – a kind of thawing – and one that allows nostalgia to exist in the air as opposed to through artifice or forced hands.
Andy (Harry Goaz) and Lucy (Kimmy Robertson) enter the conference room. Harry still has that signature tuft of hair on his head. Hawk reiterates Margeret’s message from her log; “She said something is missing and it has to do with Agent Cooper.”
“But Agent Cooper is missing,” Lucy tells him in that pointed tone of hers. We should have expected as much by this point, but its worth establishing in stone for the audience.
Lucy goes on to talk about her and Andy’s son Wally Brando, now 24 years old, whom we shall meet later, also in Part 4.
“He was born on the same day as Marlon Brando,” Andy chips in, cheerfully. As the subject of Christmas cards comes up, Hawk politely begs that they stay on topic.
“Go down to storage and get those files that we talked about. Tomorrow morning, lay ’em all out. I’ll bring the coffee and the doughnuts.” Memories of those early scenes of the first season come flooding back in. Cooper, Truman, Hawk, Andy and the doughnuts. Again, its a light pressing of nostalgia. A delicate touch, like frosting, if you’ll pardon the pun.
Hawk delicately touches the lids of the boxes, but doesn’t open them. Not yet. These boxes – and evidently others like them – will be opened soon enough. For now the emergence of memory is enough.
Next time: Holding