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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138
-at-popapostle-dot-com
Twin Peaks: What is Your Name? Twin Peaks
"What is Your Name?"
Season Three, Part 18
Written by Mark Frost & David Lynch
Directed by David Lynch
Original air date: September 3, 2017

 

It's not nice to mess with Father Time.

 

Read the episode summary at the Twin Peaks wiki

 

Didja Know?

 

This was the final episode of Showtime's limited event series of Twin Peaks or, as I like to call it, "season three".

 

Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode

 

Mr. C (body consumed by flame in this episode; presumably destroyed)

Mike

Cooper tulpa (created in this episode, becomes the new Dougie Jones)

Janey-E Jones

Sonny-Jim Jones

Agent Cooper

Laura Palmer

the Arm

Leland Palmer

Diane Evans

Richard (possibly an alternate world identity of Cooper)

Linda (possibly an alternate world identity of Diane)

Kristi (waitress at Judy's)

cowboys (men who harass Kristi and threaten Cooper at Judy's)

cook at Judy's

Carrie Page

Sarah Palmer (mentioned only)

corpse on couch (unnamed, deceased)

Mrs. Chalfont (mentioned only)

Alice Tremond 

 

Didja Notice?

 

    The evolution of the Arm asks Cooper the exact same question here that Audrey asked Charlie in Part 13: "What Story is That, Charlie?", which is "Is it the story of the little girl who lived down the lane? Is it?" What is the significance of this conjunction? Is it possible that Audrey and the Arm are somehow one-and-the-same? In Part 13: "What Story is That, Charlie?", I speculated that Audrey's question may be a reference to the 1974 novel and 1976 film The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane, about a teenage girl who lives alone in a house and who manipulates, and is manipulated by, adult males. That story could apply to Audrey's past to a certain degree. Why would the Arm ask the same question, considering it seems to be the farthest thing from a young, pretty girl?

    The voice of the evolution of the Arm is not provided by original actor Michael J. Anderson (who did not appear in season three). The voice actor here is uncredited. So who was it? When executive producer Sabrina S. Sutherland was asked who voiced it on a Reddit ask-and-answer session, she responded, "Unfortunately, I think this question should remain a mystery and not be answered." I played with the sound file of the Arm's voice in an audio editor, hoping some minor tweaking would have it sounding like Audrey, but did not find that to be the case. Pitching it down to 24 and setting tempo up to 30, it sounds sort of like David Lynch. Listen: Original - the little girl who lived down the lane.mp3   Pitch and Tempo change - the little girl who lived down the lane.mp3

 

The scene of Cooper and Laura in the Red Room at 6:56 on the Blu-ray when she whispers in his ear is essentially a replay of the scene that appeared in Part 2: "The Stars Turn and a Time Presents Itself". This may suggest that we are now back at the time of that episode, but after Cooper has altered the timeline by preventing the murder of Laura Palmer in Part 17: "The Past Dictates the Future", as we shortly see Cooper exit the Black Lodge into Glastonbury Grove where he originally entered (way back in Episode 29: "Beyond Life and Death"), rather than the circuitous route he took due to the machinations of Mr. C it the original timeline.

 

At 7:49 on the Blu-ray, Cooper sees Leland in the Red Room. Leland appears to be wearing the same dress shirt he was wearing when he died in Episode 16: "Arbitrary Law" and when he appeared in the Red Room in Episode 29: "Beyond Life and Death", but is wearing a darker a coat and completely different tie.

 

At 8:19 on the Blu-ray, Cooper lifts his right arm and twists his hand in a repeating clockwise-counterclockwise motion as he walks down the red curtain hallway. As he does so, the curtains at the end of the hallway begin to rustle and wave, allowing him to exit the Black Lodge into Glastonbury Grove near Twin Peaks. We have not seen this hand motion before; it seems that Coop has learned a few things about how the Lodge operates during his 25-year captivity there.

 

Why is Diane waiting for Cooper in Glastonbury Grove when he emerges from the red curtain gateway from the Black Lodge? Where did she come from? Did she just step out there as well? How did she know he was coming?

 

The car Cooper drives 430 miles in with Diane is a 1963 Ford 300. Why is he driving such an old (but in good condition) vehicle? Where did he get it?

 

At the 430 mile mark, Cooper and Diane drive into what seems to be an alternate reality; when it was previously broad daylight, they suddenly find themselves on the road at night.

 

The motel Cooper and Diane check into appears to be the Pearblossom Motel. This is a real world motel that closed around 2011 and is now available for television and movie productions, located at 13250 Pearblossom Highway, Pearblossom, California.

 

    At 18:25 on the Blu-ray, the motel room Cooper and Diane check into (room 7) has the opposite orientation inside from what is seen outside! The window next to the door has switched places! This remains true even when Cooper emerges from a completely different motel the next morning. Do the doors of each room at this motel lead to yet another reality?
   "You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension: a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind. You're moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas; you've just crossed over into the Twilight Zone."
Pearblossom Motel, Room 7 exterior Room 7 interior
Pearblossom Motel, Room 7 exterior  Room 7 interior
new motel room exterior
Motel the next morning

 

The song that plays on the soundtrack as Cooper and Diane make love in the motel room is "My Prayer" (1956) by The Platters. The same song was playing at KPJK radio in New Mexico on the night of August 5, 1956, when a woodsman killed the employees there and recited a poem over the air in Part 8: "Gotta Light?".

 

Diane covers Cooper's face with her hands while she seems to climax during lovemaking. Is she trying to block out the memory of Mr. C raping her 20 years ago?

 

At 23:35 on the Blu-ray, a Sharp picture-tube television set is seen in Cooper's motel room when he awakes in the morning. In 2016, it's much more likely that the TV would be a flatscreen. The room also has a rotary phone. Did Cooper and Diane travel back in time when they drove through the gateway at the 430 mile mark or when they stepped through the motel room door?

 

Diane is gone when Cooper awakes. He finds a note on the end table addressed to Richard, from Linda, explaining that she doesn't recognize him anymore and she has left. Cooper seems perplexed at the names; he is still Dale Cooper and she is still Diane as far he is concerned. Does she now remember differently? Are they now Richard and Linda? It's possible the sex Cooper and Diane engaged in the night before was a type of sex magic like that practiced by Jack Parsons in The Secret History of Twin Peaks. David Lynch has used the concept of mysteriously altered identities in his characters in some of his other works, most notably the films Lost Highway and Mulholland Drive. In Part 1: "My Log Has a Message for You", the Fireman told Cooper to "Remember Richard and Linda."

 

    When Cooper emerges from his motel room to leave, it is a different motel than the one he and Diane pulled into the night before. The new motel was shot at the Knights' Inn, 130 E Palmdale Blvd, Palmdale, California. As stated previously, the room Cooper emerges from has a completely different orientation on the outside than what we saw inside; the window is on the wrong side of the door (and the door style is different too). Cooper only seems to vaguely recognize that something is different when about to get into his car, which is now a 2003 Lincoln Town Car (the same model driven by Mr. C in early episodes!) instead of the Ford 300. Did sex magic transport Cooper and Diane to yet another reality, changing their names in the process?

    The Lincoln has Texas license plate VS2 168R and Cooper picks up Laura's look-alike Carrie Page in Odessa, Texas, so it seems he has been transported that state. Or is this even the same Cooper? Are we now watching a different Cooper (or Richard)?

 

At 26:02 on the Blu-ray, the city limits sign of Odessa, Texas states a population of 99,940. This was the official population of the city before the 2010 census (when it became 118,918). Does this indicate Cooper is in 2010 or earlier? Or has the sign simply never been updated? In fact, this was shot on location in Odessa itself on Andrews Highway and this is the actual city limits sign found there today, with an outdated population estimate.

 

Also at 26:02 on the Blu-ray, Red Star Foam and Carrier Air Conditioner stores are seen along the roadway. These are actual businesses in Odessa.

 

At 26:26 on the Blu-ray, Maersk shipping containers are seen stacked behind a building. 

 

Cooper stops at Judy's Coffee Shop in Odessa. The filming location was actually Rudy's Coffee Shop in Los Angeles! It's at 521 E Anaheim St.
Judy's Rudy's

 

At 27:11 on the Blu-ray, a patron at Judy's is reading the Odessa Daily News. This is a fictitious newspaper.

 

Bottles of Tabasco sauce are seen in Judy's.

 

The Cooper who enters Judy's Coffee Shop almost seems to have a different, colder, stiffer personality from the Cooper with which we are familiar. Again, is it our Cooper?

 

The first cowboy at Judy's pulls a Beretta 8000 Cougar pistol on Cooper. Cooper disarms him and pulls a Glock 17 on him in return.

 

The third cowboy at Judy's is armed with a Glock 26, but is disarmed by Cooper.

 

An advertising sign for Coca-Cola is seen in Judy's at 30:10 on the Blu-ray. At 30:40, a can of Heinz tomato sauce and box of C&H sugar are seen on shelves behind the counter.

 

The address of Carrie Page's house in Odessa is 1516, but we don't see the street name.

 

    The same telephone pole and number are seen in front of Carrie Page's house as was found at Fat Trout Trailer Park in Deer Meadow in Fire Walk With Me and at the intersection where Richard Horne ran over a young boy in Part 6: "Don't Die". Again, what is the significance of this telephone and the numbers on it?

    We see the telephone pole carries electricity through transformers.

 

Carrie Page tells Cooper that she needs to "get out of Dodge". This phrase seemingly originated from the 1952-1975 western TV series Gunsmoke, where the sheriff (and sometimes others) exhorted the bad guys to get out of Dodge City if they wanted to avoid negative consequences.

 

At 37:29 on the Blu-ray, notice that the left hand of the corpse on the couch is an inch or so above his leg, not resting on it. It's a bit odd. Is it due to rigor mortis setting in and causing the muscles in the arm to tighten and raise the hand up a bit from where it had been resting? There also appears to be vomit or something dried onto the man's shirt.

 

Several empty or partially-eaten microwave meal containers are seen sitting around in Carrie's living room. Are they all her recent meals or those of her and the dead man? Or did she have some guests over earlier? A semi-automatic rifle is seen laying on the floor. Is this the gun that killed the man on the couch?

 

Just as Cooper and Carrie are ready to leave her house a phone starts to ring, sounding muffled or in another room. Neither Carrie nor Cooper react to the sound. Is it someone trying to warn them not to leave? Or a sound meant to wake Cooper up from a dream??

 

At 44:12 on the Blu-ray, Cooper and Carrie stop at a Valero gas station. The shooting location is the Valero station at 9661 Sierra Hwy, Santa Clarita, CA, but it is probably meant to stand in for a station in Texas or New Mexico or Colorado, somewhere along the most likely route from Odessa, TX to Twin Peaks, WA (northeast corner of the state). One reason the site may have been chosen is because it has a couple of prickly pear cacti growing in front, giving a night time impression of being in a desert environment (though Santa Clarita is not in a desert).

Odessa to Twin Peaks route

 

When Cooper and Carrie drive past the RR Diner at 46:57 on the Blu-ray, notice that the "RR2GO" logo is missing from the top part of the wall, another indication that this is an alternate timeline.

 

Carrie wears a necklace with a horseshoe pendant on it.

 

The woman that Cooper and Carrie find living in the Palmer house tells them she is named Alice Tremond and that she and (presumably) her husband bought it from a Mrs. Chalfont. The names Tremond and Chalfont appeared previously in the original series and Fire Walk With Me as the names of mysterious people associated with residences near surreal happenings.

 

The woman playing Alice Tremond is Mary Reber, the actual current owner of the home used as the Palmer residence during filming. It's unknown why Lynch approached her about playing the role, but it may be because she bears some resemblance to Laura Palmer herself!

Alice Tremond

 

As Cooper and Carrie stand outside the Tremond house wondering what has happened at 54:25 on the Blu-ray, a voice seemingly coming from the house, distantly calls for Laura. It sounds like it may be a slightly distorted version of Sarah Palmer calling for her daughter from the opening minutes of Episode 0A: "Wrapped in Plastic".

 

When Carrie screams at the end of the episode, all of the lights of the Palmer house go out, possibly suggesting the electricity to the house has been cut off. After the end credits roll, the usual electric crackle of the Lynch/Frost Productions logo is also absent.

 

Unanswered Questions

 

Why does the evolution of the Arm ask the same question Audrey asked?

 

Why is Cooper driving such an old car when he and Diane leave Twin Peaks?

 

Why does Diane see an image of herself outside the motel? Is she saying goodbye to herself because she is soon to become Linda in this alternate reality?

 

Who was the dead man on Carrie's couch? Why does Cooper not ask her about the body?

 

    Is this the end of Twin Peaks? When asked about getting back to Carrie Page during the release celebration of his memoir Room to Dream in July 2018, David Lynch answered, "...it’s calling…but the signal has a lot of disturbances." This response is vague, at best, but suggests he may have an interest in doing more Twin Peaks. The "disturbances" could be referring to many things: ironing out a storyline, Mark Frost's interest in continuing; Showtime's (or another network's) interest in continuing the story.

    Personally, I think Frost and Lynch did have the idea of potentially continuing the story after season three in some fashion. As I recall, there was an issue of the Twin Peaks fanzine Wrapped in Plastic in which Harley Peyton, a script writer for the original series, stated that if the series had been renewed for a third season back in 1991, they would have spent a few weeks resolving the Cooper doppelganger cliffhanger, then the story would have jumped ahead several years with all our familiar characters having assumed completely different roles (such as Cooper as a pharmacist). In the season three we finally got on Showtime in 2017, the basic plot is the resolution of the Cooper doppelganger storyline in parts 1-17. Then, Part 18: "What is Your Name?" (this episode), has Cooper seemingly journeying to an alternate timeline where he and Diane assume different roles (Richard and Linda) and Laura has become Carrie Page (not to mention the differences seen in the town of Twin Peaks such as the RR Diner exterior and the ownership of the Palmer house). This sounds like Frost and Lynch picking up their storyline from where they left off in 1991, simply adjusted for the 25-year gap. So, I think they want to tell at least one more story of Twin Peaks...if the powers that be allow it. 

 

Memorable Dialog

 

is it future or is it past?.mp3

the little girl who lived down the lane.mp3

Laura who?.mp3

the name Laura Palmer.mp3

what's going on?.mp3

Twin Peaks, WA.mp3

what year is this?.mp3

scream.mp3 

 

Bonus material from the Blu-ray set   

 

    The "making of" documentary titled "A Very Lovely Dream: One Week in Twin Peaks" on disc 7 of the set features some interesting shots of props and backgrounds: a "Coffee with the chief" poster in the Sheriff's station; a Twin Peaks Post front page (with irrelevant text from the 1776 book An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith; an owl statuette behind Lucy's reception desk; a close-up shot of the Brennan family photo (very obviously fake and bizarre photo-paste of the Brennan family in front of a Christmas tree, with Wally holding a toy motorcycle very similar to the one he rides in Part 4: "...Brings Back Some Memories"); the back of Wally's jacket has a skull on it and the letters BRCM (not seen in his appearance in the episode Part 4: "...Brings Back Some Memories")...the meaning of BRCM is unknown).

   In "Impressions: A Journey Behind the Scenes of Twin Peaks" on disc 8, in the chapter "Bad Binoculars", at about 2:00 on the Blu-ray, Audrey is wearing a ring very similar to the Owl Cave ring! Is it the actual ring?

   In "Impressions: A Journey Behind the Scenes of Twin Peaks" on disc 8, in the chapter "Don't Pick Up Hitchhikers", at about 3:06 on the Blu-ray, Lynch states to actor Tim Roth that Hutch and Chantal are both killed in the shootout (seen in Part 16: "No Knock, No Doorbell".

Coffee with the Chief Twin Peaks Post
   
owl statuette Brennan family photo
   
Wally's jacket Audrey's ring
   

 

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