Staff Picks

How to Prepare for the Twin Peaks Revival at DPPL

In case you haven’t heard Twin Peaks, one of the most critically acclaimed and influential television shows of all time, is returning to the small screen after a twenty-five year hiatus.

Series’ creators David Lynch and Mark Frost have teamed up with Showtime to bring audiences eighteen new episodes, including a two-hour premiere, which will debut Sunday, May 21.

While producers have been tight-lipped about the new season’s storyline, it has been revealed that the series will take place after the second season’s cliffhanger finale and focus on Agent Cooper’s odyssey back to the sleepy Pacific Northwest logging town of Twin Peaks.

It has also been reported that a mix of big name actors, rock superstars, and Lynch veterans will be joining the ensemble cast to bring the beloved series back to life.

The unapologetically weird prime time drama, which originally aired on ABC from 1990 to 1991, followed FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper’s investigation of the mysterious killing of popular homecoming queen Laura Palmer, whose body washed up on a lakeshore “wrapped in plastic.” The grisly whodunnit murder case led Cooper into a web of sinister secrets surrounding the seemingly idyllic town.

The show spent as much time on the lives of its many eccentric residents as it did solving its centerpiece crime.

Prom photo of Laura Palmer

Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee), the Twin Peaks homecoming queen, full of secrets.

Twin Peaks was a bonafide smash hit upon its initial release with 35 million viewers tuning in for its two-hour premiere. The show’s heady mix of art-house surrealism, over-the-top melodrama, and quirky humor struck a chord with audiences and ushered in a new kind of fandom to television. It quickly became a cultural touchstone, a mass text whose mysteries called for communal decoding.

Even after almost three decades since its first broadcast, Twin Peak’s cult following continues to thrive in the digital era.

It’s hard to overstate the series’ impact as it altered the television landscape forever, setting the stage for recent prestige dramas like Mad Men, True Detective, The Killing, and Hannibal. Today, the show’s influence can be seen in all areas of popular culture—from television shows and commercials, comic books and video games, to films and song lyrics.

The Des Plaines Public Library has a variety of Twin Peaks-related DVDs, books, eBooks, audiobooks, and compact discs to help you prepare for the highly anticipated revival of this seminal series.

So, grab a cup of coffee “as black as midnight on a moonless night” and a heaping helping of cherry pie and immerse yourself in the weird and wonderful world of Twin Peaks where nothing is quite as it seems.

Cover of Twin Peaks: The Complete Series DVD boxset

Twin Peaks: The Complete Series

With the reboot drawing closer what better time to celebrate the enduring qualities of Twin Peaks than returning to where it all began. If you have the time (and stamina) why not binge-watch the entire series. This special Gold Box Edition DVD set contains the pilot and all thirty episodes originally broadcast from 1990-91. Also included is a bevy of special features comprised of deleted scenes, a feature-length documentary, an interactive map, complete Log Lady introductions, Saturday Night Live with Kyle MacLachlan's monologue, a music video, on-air promos, TV spots, production documents, rare photos, and much more.

Soundtrack from Twin Peaks CD cover

Soundtrack from Twin Peaks

Perhaps there is no better way to revisit the surreal universe of Twin Peaks than grooving to the mournful jazz, blues, and doo-wop soundscapes of composer Angelo Badalamenti, who won the 1991 Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance for his iconic "Twin Peaks Theme." Most of the songs found on this collection are instrumental tracks, but the three tracks with lyrics were all written by David Lynch. Each of these hauntingly beautiful compositions are performed by ethereal songbird Julee Cruise, who was also featured in the TV series as the “Roadhouse Singer.”

Diane: The Twin Peaks Tapes of Agent Dale Cooper MP3 cover

Diane: The Twin Peaks Tapes of Agent Dale Cooper

This official tie-in recording was originally released on a double-sided cassette in late 1990 and is now available only in MP3 format. It consists of FBI Agent Dale Cooper’s taped notes to his secretary Diane and combines audio tracks from various Twin Peaks episodes along with new monologues written by the show’s co-creator Mark Frost’s brother, Scott Frost. The dictation tapes earned Kyle MacLachlan a Grammy nomination for best spoken-word performance.

The Secret History of Twin Peaks book cover

The Secret History of Twin Peaks

If you can read only one book about Twin Peaks, make it this one. Released last year, The Secret History of Twin Peaks is a lavishly illustrated epistolary novel written by Mark Frost. The book is presented as a dossier of various documents (journal entries, classified FBI files, autopsy reports, and newspaper clippings) pertaining to the town of Twin Peaks and its inhabitants. There is also an excellent audio edition which features several actors reprising their roles from the TV show. This is a multimedia experience no Twin Peaks devotee can afford to miss.

Twin Peaks: Fan Phenomena book cover

Twin Peaks: Fan Phenomena

In this volume, editors Marisa C. Hayes and Franck Boulègue have collected ten essays and three brief interviews that examine the fascinating world of Twin Peaks and its profound influence on popular culture. This highly accessible anthology sets out to speak to the show’s fanbase rather than strictly to academic audiences as previous Twin Peaks critical studies have done. Subjects of analysis range from the keen fashion sense of the show’s characters to dream psychology. The book also features color images from the series, film, and fan media. Twin Peaks: Fan Phenomena is a perfect selection for fans, both old and new, wishing to delve deeper in unraveling the many mysteries of the classic series.

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me DVD cover

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me

​Twin Peaks was followed by a 1992 feature film, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me, that acts as both prequel and epilogue to the television saga. It centers on the murder investigation of Teresa Banks and the last seven days in the life of Laura Palmer, leading up to her murder. The film is marked by a dramatic shift in tone from the TV series with its trademark offbeat humor in relative short supply. Upon its release, the darker, more moody movie was a critical and commercial failure that divided the Twin Peaks fan base. In the years since, Fire Walk with Me has been reclaimed as one of Lynch’s masterpieces, with some fans and critics even preferring it over the series that spawned it. It is essential viewing for true Twin Peaks aficionados.

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me: Music From the Motion Picture Soundtrack cover

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me: Music From the Motion Picture Soundtrack

Composer Angelo Badalamenti, who wrote the score for the television series, returns to create another masterful backdrop for Lynch’s surreal artistic vision. This collection of twelve tracks mixes smoky after-midnight jazz with ambient sounds to set a brooding and melancholic atmosphere. Along with Badalamenti’s noirish jazz stylings, the soundtrack has several standout vocal performances: Jimmy Scott contribute his otherworldly voice to “Sycamore Trees” and singer Julee Cruise once again lends her eerily angelic talents to “Questions in a World of Blue” and “Voice of Love.”

Damn Fine Cherry Pie: The Unauthorized Cookbook Inspired by the TV Show Twin Peaks book cover

Damn Fine Cherry Pie: The Unauthorized Cookbook Inspired by the TV Show Twin Peaks

​In the unique realm of Twin Peaks, there are many ways that food is highlighted, with Agent Cooper’s obsessive affinity for "damn good" coffee and cherry pie being the most famous examples. Twin Peaks U.K Festival founder Lindsey Bowan capitalizes on the show’s persistent culinary fetishization in her quirky cookbook, which gathers seventy-five mouthwatering recipes inspired by iconic scenes and characters from the series. It contains everything, from Double R Diner fare (Laura Palmer's Turkey Melt Burger) to sinfully decadent desserts (The Log Lady’s Sugar Cookies), for cooks at any skill level. The book is chock full of beautifully staged photographs of the entire Twin Peaks gastronomic repertoire and, as an added bonus, includes activities, crafts, trivia, and quizzes. There’s even a section on throwing a Twin Peaks-inspired dinner party, which offers advice on what music to play, how to dress like your favorite character, and even how to tie a cherry stem with your tongue à la Audrey Horne! If you’re looking to throw a premiere party for the first episode of season three of Twin Peaks, consider this book your ultimate guide.

comments powered by Disqus