Friday, July 14, 2017

Twin Peaks: The Return 3x09 Recap: "Part 9: This Is The Chair" (Is That A Bag Of Cheetos In Your Pocket Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?) [Contributor: Erin Allen]


"Part 9: This Is The Chair"
Original Airdate: July 9, 2017

Even David Lynch at his most expositional still provides quality television. Part 9 is largely expositional and transitional, setting us up for exciting things. That doesn’t make it any less enjoyable. Here’s what happened.

BOB/Cooper (or maybe I should call him Mr. C now — who knows if the BOB spirit is still with him) makes it to his team’s rendezvous spot. Chantal (Jennifer Jason Leigh) from Part 2 is there with Hutch, who is played by Tim Roth! They fix him up (remember he was shot in the stomach), and give him new guns and clean phones. He texts someone a cryptic message: “Around the dinner table, the conversation is lively,” then he calls Mr. Todd and asks if it’s done. I’m assuming he is referring to the hit on Dougie/Cooper. Mr. C tells Hutch to kill the warden, and then takes off after a goodbye kiss from Chantal at her husband’s insistence. Awkward.

Gordon gets a call from Colonel Davis while they are flying back to Philadelphia. They re-route to Buckhorn, much to Diane’s chagrin. They are also notified of Mr. C’s escape from prison. “Cooper flew the coop!”

At the morgue, Albert, Tammy, and Gordon meet with Lt. Knox and Det. Macklay. Diane waits in the waiting room. She reads a text on her phone from an unknown number: “Around the dinner table, the conversation is lively.” Her text is all in caps. The one Mr. C sent was not. Is there a middle man? Does Diane know that the man she saw in prison is behind these texts?

Det. Macklay briefs the FBI gang on the convoluted case involving the headless body and Bill Hastings. Albert replies, “What happens in season two?” which is the best response ever. Some new information about Bill is that he and Ruth were researching an alternate dimension and published a blog about it, The Search For The Zone (which is a real website!). Then Constance and Albert flirt in the cutest, dorkiest way.
Albert: This from the principal of your local high school? 
Constance: Not to mention, marble champion of the sixth grade. 
Albert: When did he lose his marbles? 
Constance: When the dog got his cat’s eyes.
I SHIP IT. And so does Gordon, according to the look on his face. Actually, the facial expressions from Gordon on this whole episode are fabulous.

Tammy interrogates Bill, and we get another amazing performance from Matthew Lillard. He tells her that he and Ruth found hidden records detailing a place and a time where they could enter the dimension and make contact with a certain person. That person, Bill claims, is Major Briggs. He says that Briggs told them where to get specific coordinates at a secure military database. He needed these coordinates to go to a different place. They brought the information back to him, and “then something terrible happened.” When they gave him the numbers, he started to float up, and he said “Cooper” twice before his head disappeared. Bill describes “others” that came in, and apparently that is how Ruth was killed. I’m thinking the “others” are Woodsmen?

Back in Part 4, Bobby told Hawk and Frank that Cooper had visited his dad the day before he was killed in the fire. That seems like ages ago, but in the timeline it’s not long. The three lawmen go to see Betty Briggs. She knows why they are there. Garland told her right after Cooper had left that one day Bobby, Hawk, and Sheriff Truman (which Sheriff Truman wasn’t specified) would ask her about Cooper, and she was to give them something. She goes to a chair in her living room. “This is the chair.” She pulls a lever and part of the molding on the chair pops open and she pulls out a small metal tube. “Somehow he knew it would all turn out well. He saw this life for you. Your father never lost faith in you.” Bobby gets emotional because, well, duh.

At the station, Hawk and Frank are puzzled about how to open the tube, but Bobby knows how to open it. He throws it on the ground and then holds it up to his ear. There is a humming sound coming from it. Once the sound stops, he throws it down again, and the tube opens. Inside are two tiny squares of paper. One has a place, dates, and a time, along with symbols we’ve seen before. The time is 2:53, which we have heard about at various moments. The place is Jack Rabbit’s Palace, which is a spot Garland took Bobby to when he was young. Bobby even named it Jack Rabbit’s Palace. The dates are in two days' time. They plan on going to this place. “He saw all of this. Whatever this is.” I love the whole Briggs family, and it is so cool how integral they are to The Return.

The police are trying to figure out why someone tried to kill Dougie/Cooper. They do a background check on him and find that there is nothing on him prior to 1997 — no birth certificate or social security number. They take his coffee cup and plan to run the DNA on it. They also find out that the print on the gun belongs to Ike The Spike. They know where he is and surround him. Before they showed up, Ike called and left a message for someone named JT saying, “No cigar.”

Those are the major plot points, but a lot of extemporaneous stuff happened, too:
  • Andy and Lucy fight over a chair that they are going to buy online. Lucy wants the beige one and Andy wants the red one. After Andy gives into Lucy, she places an order for the red one. They are a strange pair.
  • Johnny Horne runs around his home, and then into a wall at full speed. His mother calls after him, and then runs to where he has collapsed. 
  • Jerry is still high in the woods. He is afraid of his foot, which talks to him, “I am not your foot.”
  • Gordon smokes a cigarette with Diane.
  • Friggin’ Chad is eating in the conference room, and he’s not supposed to.
  • The ringing tone is still present in Beverly’s Great Northern office. Beverly and Ben have a moment, and Ben shuts it down. “I can’t do this. I don’t know why it is.” Beverly tells him, “You’re a good man, Ben.”
  • There are two performances at The Roadhouse. One by Hudson Mohawke and another one by Au Revoir Simone, who also played on Part 4.
  • Two girls, Ella and Chloe, talk in a booth. Ella has a nasty rash in her armpit. She asks Chloe, “Have you seen that penguin? You know the penguin.”  Chloe doesn’t know what she’s talking about, but laughs with Ella anyway. Ella obviously had an empty beer can that she was drinking from, and it was completely distracting in this scene. 
  • About that penguin. Cooper told Annie a penguin joke in season two, episode 18: “A couple of penguins are walking across an iceberg, and the first one says to the second one, 'You look like you’re wearing a tuxedo.' The second one says, 'Maybe I am.'” Is this connected to that penguin?!


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