Twin Peaks Usenet Archive


Subject: TP: Frequently Answered Questions List
From: swsh@ellis.uchicago.edu (Janet M. Swisher)
Date: 1991-04-11, 12:12
Newsgroups: alt.tv.twin-peaks,rec.arts.tv

[I've substantially reorganized the list to make it more coherent
(ordered by topic, rather than when I wrote the question), but I've
only #'d lines that have new information.]

TWIN PEAKS 
FREQUENTLY ANSWERED QUESTIONS
Last revision: 4/11/91

(Many of these concern what various people said.  Many thanks to Bart
J. Geraci, the man with the closed caption decoder.  Thanks also to
Tom Neff for numerous suggestions and text of some entries.)

WARNING: This article may contain references to any episode up to and
including the most recent one shown in the U.S.  

New or changed lines begin with #.

Questions answered in this article:
==================================

TWIN PEAKS production details:
-----------------------------
1.  a) Where is Twin Peaks supposed to be? 
    b) How big a town is Twin Peaks?
2. What year is the show set in?  
#3.  a) Isn't TWIN PEAKS supposed to cover one day per episode?  
#    b) If so, why does the moon appear to change phase so strangely?
4. Do TWIN PEAKS episodes have names?  What's the best way of
	referring to episodes?
5. Was there an episode broadcast January 26, 1991, in the US?   
6. Is it true that TWIN PEAKS has been cancelled?  Where can I
	write/phone/fax to protest?
#7. What are "closed captions" and why are people using them to settle
#	arguments over exactly who said what on TWIN PEAKS?
8. How were the funny voices in Cooper's dream done?  

TWIN PEAKS actors:
-----------------
9.  Wasn't the Giant also on Star Trek: The Next Generation?
10. Didn't the boy with the creamed corn look an awful lot like David Lynch?
11. a) Is Miguel Ferrer (the actor who plays Albert Rosenfield) related
	to Jose Ferrer, the movie actor?
    b) Is this Miguel Ferrer the same one who's credited on the
	recording of "Fishheads"?  
#12. Was the guy who plays BOB someody Lynch "found" working on the set?
#13. Weren't some of the TWIN PEAKS people in ROBOCOP?

TWIN PEAKS-related merchandise:
------------------------------
14. What's this "secret diary" that people keep citing?
15. Has anybody noticed that Julee Cruise's "Floating Into The Night"
	album (which includes several tunes heard in TWIN PEAKS
	episodes) gives special thanks to, among other people, Bob (no
	last name)?  
16. I've just seen/heard about a videotape/laser-disc called TWIN
	PEAKS available in Europe/Japan/etc.  What is its
	relationship to the series?

Outside issues raised by TWIN PEAKS:
-----------------------------------
17. Has anybody mentioned the possible connection between: [various things]
18. Can a person's hair really turn white "over night" like Leland's did
	between the first and second seasons?
#19. Haven't I heard of the White Lodge somewhere before?
#20. Did you know that the book COMMUNION by Whitley Streiber talks
	about the connection between UFO's and owls?

Questions on plot points:
------------------------
21. a) What language was the little boy with the creamed corn speaking?
    b) What did he say?
22. a) What was that ditty Leland was singing just after his hair turned
	white, and what does it mean?
    b) What was Leland singing when Cooper and Truman stopped him for
	driving his car erratically?
23. Who was standing outside the window while Josie was seducing Harry?
24. What were the three predictions that The Giant made to Cooper?
25. What was the poem that "Mike" recited in Cooper's dream, and later at the
	sheriff's station?
26. Maddy notices a burning smell just before she's attacked by Leland/BOB.
	Didn't Jacoby say he smelled burned oil in the hospital when Jacques
	was killed?  Does this mean that Leland was BOB when he killed
	Jacques?
27. Who killed Laura Palmer?  


AND NOW, ANSWERS TO THE QUESTIONS:

TWIN PEAKS production details:
-----------------------------
1. a) Where is Twin Peaks supposed to be? 
-- It's in the State of Washington, but where exactly is not clear.  In
	Cooper's initial monolog to Diane as he's driving into town, he
	states that it's five miles south of the Canadian border and twelve
	miles west of the state line.  That would seem to place it in the
	northeast corner of the state.  However the surrounding geography is
	like that of the Cascade Mountains in western WA.  References to
	cities such as Seattle and Tacoma, but not Spokane, also seem to
	place it in western WA.  The show's creators seem to have smooshed
	the state so that it all fits west of the Cascades.
   Many of the outdoor shots were filmed in Snoqualmie, WA (and the
	surrounding area), which is in the Cascades, not too far from
	Seattle.  The waterfall is there; the Great Northern Hotel is
	really the Salish Lodge (although it doesn't look like the GNH
	on the inside--the interiors of both the GNH and the
	Packard/Martell home were filmed in the Kiana Lodge); and the
	RR Diner is really the Mar-T Cafe, which really does have
	heavenly cherry pies.

    b) How big a town is Twin Peaks?
-- Again, that's not exactly clear.  The population sign that's shown at
	station breaks and on the TWIN PEAKS sound track album cover
	indicates 51,201.  According to _Twin Peaks Behind the Scenes:
#	An Unofficial Guide to Twin Peaks_, by Mark Altman,
	Lynch/Frost originally conceived of it as 5,201, but the
	network insisted on increasing it.  This has resulted in mixed
	cues within the show. For instance, Twin Peaks doesn't have a
	resident circuit court judge, which any town of 51K+ in the
	U.S. would; it has a sheriff's department but no police
	department (sheriff is usually a county rather than a city
	office).  On the other hand, it does have its own hospital, a
	fancy department store, and a large hotel.  It seems
	Lynch/Frost hasn't worried too much about being consistent on
	this point.

2. What year is the show set in?  
-- References in the first season placed it in 1989.  However, _The Secret
#	Diary of Laura Palmer_ (see Question 14) places the action in
	1990.  Sources on the production team (i.e., Scott Frost)
	indicate that it's been sort of miraculously moved up to 1990.
	Apparently, the producers and directors have trouble keeping
	track of what day it's supposed to be in Twin Peaks, never
	mind what year.

#3. a) Isn't TWIN PEAKS supposed to cover one day per episode?  
#-- Yes, in general, that is the convention used.  There are
#	occasional exceptions; at one point, three days passed in Twin
#	Peaks between TWIN PEAKS episodes.  Sometimes an episode will
#	start in the middle of the night preceding that episode's
#	"day".  As mentioned in Answer 2, Lynch/Frost doesn't keep
#	track of what day it is as well as the fans do.  For instance,
#	teenagers in Twin Peaks don't seem to go to school much, but
#	they have been seen in school on days that were supposed to be
#	Saturdays.  

# b) If so, why does the moon appear to change phase so strangely?
#	One "day" it's full, the next half, etcetera.  
#-- The moon appears to be used pretty much symbolically.  There are
#	only a few stock moon inserts used in the series, e.g., a
#	closeup of the diagonal half-moon floating in a black sky.  No
#	particular effort at astronomical accuracy is evident.

4. Do TWIN PEAKS episodes have names?  What's the best way of
	referring to episodes?
-- The episodes are not named.  Whether it's the best way or not,
	Lynch/Frost number the episodes with four-digit numbers, where the
	first digit is the season number, and the others are the order
	within that season.  This system was apparently adopted after the
	pilot was produced, so the pilot is 1000, the first one-hour episode
	is 1001, and so on.  However for the second season, the two-hour
	season premiere is 2001.

5. Was there an episode broadcast January 26, 1991, in the USA? Were
	there in fact several regional variants broadcast? Did we
	learn who shot Cooper? Did Dick Tremaine die?  
-- No, the 1/26 episode was a collective and spontaneous hoax started
	by R o d Johnson and carried on straightfaced by numerous
	alt.tv.twin-peaks posters.

6. Is it true that TWIN PEAKS has been cancelled?  Where can I
	write/phone/fax to protest?
--TWIN PEAKS was placed on hiatus due to failing ratings; the
	remaining six episodes ABC ordered will be shown Thursdays
	starting 3/28/91 (check local listings for times).  Often, a
	hiatus is a first step before cancelling a show.  Although the
	remaining episodes have been scheduled, ABC still has not made
	a decision on continuing TP for another season.
  Write to:
	Robert Iger
	Entertainment President, ABC
	2040 Avenue of the Stars
	Century City, CA   90067
  Phone: 
	(213) 557-7777 (Los Angeles)
	(212) 887-3900 (New York)
	(212) 456-7477 (New York, network programming)
  Fax:
	(213) 557-7160
  More addresses and phone numbers can be found in Keith Dawson's
	cribsheet to TP resources, <5104@atexnet.UUCP>, and later
	postings.

#7. What are "closed captions" and why are people using them to settle
#	arguments over exactly who said what on TWIN PEAKS?
#-- Closed Captions (CC) are the text of a show's dialog transmitted on
#	a side channel along with the standard picture and sound
#	signals. Hearing-impaired viewers can install a special CC
#	decoder on their TV sets to display this text on the screen. 
#   This means that all the dialog in the show is also being broadcast
#	in written form, so that in principle the question "What did he
#	say?" can always be answered authoritatively -- IF, that is, you
#	believe that the CC's are reliable!
#   There are two ways CC's are created: by people who sit and listen
#	to a show and type in what they hear -- live events are
#	generally done this way -- or by people with access to the
#	script. Some, if not all, network shows are done the second,
#	more careful way. We don't know for certain that TWIN PEAKS is
#	such a show, but the lack of phonetic mistakes observed in the
#	PEAKS captions so far suggests indicate that the captioners
#	use scripts.  In particular it seems unlikely that correct
#	French like <> would come from
#	anywhere but a script.

8. How were the funny voices in Cooper's dream done?  
-- Before shooting the scene, the actors were recorded reading their lines.
	The recording was then played to them backwards, and they memorized
	how to imitate it.  Each shot in the scene was acted in reverse
	order, with the actors saying their "backwards" lines.  The film was
	then reversed so that the actions came out in the right order, and
	the words came out double-reversed.  Unfortunately, the words
	weren't very intelligible, so subtitles were added.

TWIN PEAKS actors:
-----------------
9. Wasn't the Giant also on Star Trek: The Next Generation?
#-- Yes, he is Carel Struycken, who played Mr. Homm, Deanna Troi's
#	mother's personal assistant.  No, he did not play Lurch on the
	Addams Family (although it has been reported that he will play
	Lurch in an upcoming AF movie).

10. Didn't the boy with the creamed corn look an awful lot like David Lynch?
-- Yes, that's because he's Austin Jack Lynch, David Lynch's son.  (For
	handy reference, look at Gordon Cole (Cooper's boss): he's played by
	David Lynch.)

11. a) Is Miguel Ferrer (the actor who plays Albert Rosenfield) related
	to Jose Ferrer, the movie actor?
--Yes, Miguel is Jose's son.
    b)  Is this Miguel Ferrer the same one who's credited on the
	recording of "Fishheads"?  
--Yes, Ferrer was part of Barnes and Barnes who recorded "Fishheads"
	(Bill Mumy was the other half).  Ferrer and Mumy also make up
	a band called Seduction of the Innocent which plays very
	occasionally at comics conventions.  They have also written
	some comic books together.

#12. Was the guy who plays BOB someody Lynch "found" working on the set?
#-- Yes. Frank Silva was an "on-set dresser" -- that's someone who helps
#	cast members with their costumes on the set, as opposed to back
#	at the dressing room -- when Lynch saw him and tapped him to play
#	Laura's demonic killer.  He is credited as a dresser in the pilot.

#13. Weren't some of the TWIN PEAKS people in ROBOCOP?
#-- Yes, three of them: Miguel Ferrer (Albert Rosenfield), Ray Wise (Leland
#	Palmer), and Dan O'Herlihy (Andrew Packard).  No, Clarence
#	Williams III was NOT in ROBOCOP!

TWIN PEAKS-related merchandise:
------------------------------
14. What's this "secret diary" that people keep citing?
--_The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer_ was written by Jennifer Lynch (David's
	daughter), and is published in the U.S by Pocket Books, and in the
	U.K. by Penguin Books.  It is officially sanctioned by
	Lynch/Frost Productions (the jacket says it is "A Twin Peaks
	Book").  It's supposed to be the text of the diary that was
	discovered in the *second* season of the show.

15. Has anybody noticed that Julee Cruise's "Floating Into The Night"
	album (which includes several tunes heard in TWIN PEAKS
	episodes) gives special thanks to, among other people, Bob (no
	last name)?  
-- Yes.

16. I've just seen/heard about a videotape/laser-disc called TWIN
	PEAKS available in Europe/Japan/etc.  What is its
	relationship to the series?
--It's a modified version of the series pilot, which was shown as a
	TV movie in Europe.  It ends differently, with the killer
	being caught.  The sequence which made up Cooper's dream in 
	the series is tacked onto the end, as an epilog labelled "25
	years later".  In the series, when Cooper describes his dream
	to Truman and Lucy, he describes all the action that appeared
	in the Euro-version that diverged from the series action as
	being part of his dream.

Outside issues raised by TWIN PEAKS:
-----------------------------------
17. Has anybody mentioned the possible connection between:
   * BOB and J. R. "Bob" Dobbs of the Church of the Subgenius?
   * All the donuts they eat in Twin Peaks, and JFK's "Ich bin ein Berliner"
	speech?  What he literally said was "I am a jelly donut."
   * Agent Dale Cooper and D.B. Cooper, the guy who hijacked a plane and
	then parachuted over Washington State with a whole bunch of money
	and was never found?
   * Ben and Jerry Horne and Ben and Jerry's brand ice cream (in one scene
	the brothers Horne are even shown eating ice cream)?
   * Sarah's vision of a white horse, and Mr. Ed?
   *   "       "    "  "   "    "      "  Laura' pony, Troy?
   *   "       "    "  "   "    "      "  Death, which "rides a pale horse"?
   *   "       "    "  "   "    "      "  heroin, also known as "white horse" 
					  (maybe Leland/BOB shot her up with 
					  heroin)?
-- Yes for all of the above.

18. Can a person's hair really turn white "over night" like Leland's did
	between the first and second seasons?
--Generally, only folklore supports this ("it happened to a friend of a
	friend of mine").  Since hair above the scalp is dead matter, it
	can't change color without dyes or bleaches.  It's possible that a
	person with mixed gray and dark hair could lose all their older,
	darker hair over a short period of time (a few days or weeks) due to
	a physical or psychological trauma, which would leave them with just
	gray hair.  Or a dark-haired person might lose all their dark hairs
	and grow in gray ones over a similar span of time, but "over night"
	seems physically implausible.

#19. Haven't I heard of the White Lodge somewhere before?
#-- Could be. Jerry Boyajian found an amazingly detailed reference to it
#	in an out-of-print 1926 adventure fantasy called THE DEVIL'S GUARD 
#	(a.k.a. RAMSDEN) by Talbot Mundy. In the novel, the White Lodge is a 
#	secret Tibetan brotherhood whose members study Life for the love of 
#	it, combat evil, and mysteriously influence events. The Dalai Lama is 
#	an external representative of the White Lodge. This obviously fits 
#	TWIN PEAKS like a glove, and Lynch/Frost may have read it. There are 
#	other references occasionally dug up; if you have a good one, by all 
#	means share it! 

#20. Did you know that the book COMMUNION by Whitley Streiber talks
#	about the connection between UFO's and owls?
#-- Yes, Streiber says that people who have been abducted by UFO's
#	often have "masking" memories of owls, rather than aliens
#	(cf., Major Brigg's only memory of his disappearance was an
#	huge image of an owl).

Questions on plot points:
------------------------
21. a) What language was the little boy with the creamed corn speaking?
-- French
    b) What did he say?
-- J'ai une a^me solitaire: I have a solitary soul (according to the closed
#	captions).  This was also the text of Harold Smith's suicide note.

22. a) What was that ditty Leland was singing just after his hair turned
	white, and what does it mean?
-- The full lyrics of the song are:

	Mairzy doats and dozy doats
	and little lambzy divy.
	A kiddly divy, too, wooden shoe?

	Now if the words sounds queer,
	and funny to your ear,
	a little bit jumbled and jivy,
	Sing:

	Mares eat oats and does eats oats
	and little lambs eat ivy.
	A kid'll eat ivy, too, wouldn't you?

    b) What was Leland singing when Cooper and Truman stopped him for
	driving his car erratically?
-- "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top" from the musical _Oklahoma_.
	It was the tune that Leland danced to at the Great Northern
	earlier in the same episode, and which Cooper was whistling
	just before he and Truman stopped Leland.

23. Who was standing outside the window while Josie was seducing Harry?
-- A number of theories have been suggested, with Jonathon (Josie's
	"cousin") being the most popular; others theories include Leo,
	Pete, and Andrew Packard.  However, Tim Holland, the director
	of the episode in question, is quoted in _Twin Peaks Behind
	the Scenes_ as saying it was Jonathon (well, he says "the
	Oriental man", but he means Jonathon).

24. What were the three predictions that The Giant made to Cooper?  
-- (1) a man in a smiling bag; (2) the owls are not what they seem;
	(3) without chemicals, he points.
   The giant also said something about "Leo locked in a hungry horse," and
	that there was a clue at Leo's house.  However, these were not the
	"predictions" which were to be fulfilled before Cooper gets his ring
	back.  The former refers to the fact that Leo was in jail in Hungry
	Horse, Montana when Theresa Banks was killed, and the latter refers
	to the Circle Brand boots that were found with the cocaine at Leo's
	house.

25. What was the poem that "Mike" recited in Cooper's dream, and later at the
	sheriff's station?
-- "Through the darkness of future past
    the magician longs to see
    one chants out between two worlds
    'Fire walk with me.'"

   (There has been much debate over whether the second-to-last line is "one
	chants out" or "one chance out".  The closed captions indicate
	"chants".)

26. Maddy notices a burning smell just before she's attacked by Leland/BOB.
	Didn't Jacoby say he smelled burned oil in the hospital when Jacques
	was killed?  Does this mean that Leland was possessed by BOB
	when he killed Jacques?
-- No.  Later, under hypnosis, Jacoby corrected himself and said that he
	smelled the burned smell just before he was attacked at the gazebo,
	but not at the hospital.  _Twin Peaks Behind the Scenes_
	indicates that Jacoby's attacker was Leland/BOB, although this
	was not revealed in any episode.

27. Who killed Laura Palmer?  
	For those in places where it's been revealed, who weren't
	paying attention or didn't get it, and those elsewhere who
	want to annoy their friends: (Skip now if you don't want to
	know.)

--Laura's father, Leland, killed her.  He was possessed at the time by
	an evil spirit named BOB (whose "true" face Sarah Palmer and
	Maddy Ferguson saw in visions, and Agent Cooper saw in his
	dream.)  Leland had been a host to BOB since childhood, and
	had been abusing and molesting Laura from her early teen
	years, if not earlier.  Leland/BOB had a habit of cutting
	Laura with many small cuts during their "sessions" together;
	Laura died of blood loss from these wounds.
-- Janet Swisher Internet: swsh@midway.uchicago.edu	University of Chicago Phone: (312) 702-7608 Academic and Public Computing P-mail: 1155 E. 60th St. Chicago IL 60637, USA


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