Monday, January 2, 2017

Review: The Secret History of Twin Peaks

The Secret History of Twin Peaks The Secret History of Twin Peaks by Mark Frost
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It's been a few years since I first saw the original Twin Peaks series on DVD, and after reading this book (a much-needed tie-in to tide the fans over until the long-awaited, long-delayed revival debuts on Showtime later this year), I think I'll have to go back and check out the original thirty episodes again. When I do so, however, I'll have a lot more in mind than just Black Lodge, White Lodge, general surreal creepiness underlying a quaint small town. No, thanks to Mark Frost's coffee-table book, it'll be hard not to look at the town of Twin Peaks without seeing its connections to Native American folklore, UFOs, the JFK assassination, Watergate, Scientology, and other assorted conspiracies of the last century.

When this book gets into such X-Files territory, that's when it becomes clear that while Twin Peaks was David Lynch's baby, Frost clearly has a stronger handle on world-building. For Lynch, it was never about the history, but all about the surrealism and thematic imagery, because he was so Euro-cinematic in his style like that.

My only concern is that the book, infuriatingly, doesn't resolve all of the biggest unsolved mysteries of the original series. Although I'm sure Lynch will fight tooth and nail to prevent the resolution of "HOW'S ANNIE?!" from ever coming to light, let's face it, it's easier to ruin a mystery by not answering it than by doing the opposite.

Even though I don't get Showtime, I still can't wait to see the revival. But it'll probably be a very long time until I can. In the meantime, there's always this Secret History to look back on.

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