Review S02E22 “Beyond Life And Death”


Member: Rank 5
Aired Thursday 9:00 PM Jun 10, 1991 on ABC

Cooper faces his destiny in the Black Lodge.


Kyle MacLachlan ...Special Agent Dale Cooper
Michael Ontkean ...Sheriff Harry S. Truman
Mädchen Amick ...Shelly Johnson
Dana Ashbrook ...Bobby Briggs
Richard Beymer ...Benjamin Horne
Lara Flynn Boyle ...Donna Hayward
Sherilyn Fenn ...Audrey Horne
Warren Frost ...Dr. Will Hayward
Peggy Lipton ...Norma Jennings
Everett McGill ...Big Ed Hurley
Jack Nance ...Pete Martell
Kimmy Robertson ...Lucy Moran
Ray Wise ...Leland Palmer
Harry Goaz ...Deputy Andy Brennan
Michael Horse ...Deputy Tommy 'Hawk' Hill
Sheryl Lee ...Maddy Ferguson / Laura Palmer
Kenneth Welsh ...Windom Earle
Russ Tamblyn ...Dr. Lawrence Jacoby
Heather Graham ...Annie Blackburn
Grace Zabriskie ...Sarah Palmer
Wendy Robie ...Nadine Hurley
Don S. Davis ...Maj. Garland Briggs
Charlotte Stewart ...Betty Briggs
Gary Hershberger ...Mike Nelson
Mary Jo Deschanel ...Eileen Hayward
Catherine E. Coulson ...The Log Lady
Jimmy Scott ...Singer
Dan O'Herlihy ...Andrew Packard
Carel Struycken ...Giantt
Hank Worden ...Waiter
Ed Wright ...Dell Mibbler
Michael J. Anderson ...Man From Another Place
Frank Silva ...Bob
Phoebe Augustine ...Ronnette Pulaski
Jan D'Arcy ...Sylvia Horne
Andrea Hays ...Heidi
Arvo Katajisto ...Security Guard
Brenda E. Mathers ...Caroline


Mark Frost...(created by)
David Lynch...(created by)
Mark Frost...(written by)
Harley Peyton...(written by)
Robert Engels...(written by)


David Lynch


Member: Rank 3
And so we close the final curtain on TWIN PEAKS. I could almost say literally – there was a big red curtain drawn to get into the Black Lodge, and Nadine’s last words were “Where are my drape runners?” – but not quite.

So, let’s judge it by the stories and how they ended:

Windom Earle – Windom found the Black Lodge he sought, using Annie’s fear as his entrance key. But if fear was the key to the Lodge, how did Dale get in on his own? His fear for Annie’s safety, I guess. Dale was willing to give up his own soul to save Annie, but Bob of all people – or whatever he is – would have none of that! I’ll do the soul-stealin’ around here, he announced, and took Windom’s soul instead - blowing him up for good measure.

The Black Lodge – more like the Black Lounge, really, complete with a lounge singer. I always wondered where bad lounge acts went to die; well, now I know. Since we’d seen and heard examples of its weirdness in Dale’s dream of it back in season 1, it wasn’t really such a big surprise, just kind of bizarre. Unfortunately, he met his doppelganger in there and it looks like his double is the one who returned to the real world, while the real Dale is still in there trying to find a hallway that doesn’t lead back to the lounge or to the same hallway. Sad way to end things for our hero. But he’ll get out next season….oh, yeah, right. At least, Annie survived; I was genuinely surprised about that.

Andy and Lucy – the lovebirds are finally together, with Lucy so scared after the post-pageant attack. Later on when the bank guard got a call and shouted “It’s a boy” I wondered if he was talking about Lucy. But, really, she never even seemed to be showing even though she’d been pregnant since last season. She certainly didn’t look pregnant while doing that dance earlier in the competition, so I think her due date was further along.

Catherine, Andrew, and Pete – well, Andrew recognized the mystery key from last week as a safe deposit box key. So he substituted his own and went off with Pete to see what was in the box. Audrey had picked that day to chain herself to the cage door in the vault to protest their part in financing the Ghostwood project. But she just chained herself to the door, so people could still walk right in anyway. Not much of a way to make a scene, really. As Andrew and Pete came in, we got a David Lynch specialty – a slow moving bank manager. He finally led them to the box and left them alone to open it. Then Pete asked Andrew why he and the bank manager kept calling the key a “safety deposit box” key when the term is “safe deposit box" key being as the boxes are in a big safe and all. (Well, he didn’t really ask that but I thought I’d mention it. That mistake is right up there with “hot water heater”; no one needs to heat hot water.) Anyway, Andrew opens the box only to find it was rigged with a bomb and Kablooey! Andrew is no doubt gone, and probably poor Pete as well. Too bad, as Pete never did anyone any harm. How about Audrey, though? Was she far enough away? We’ll find out next seas…oh, I forgot again. That whole plotline with Andrew and Catherine and Josie and the other guy just meandered nowhere all season. Figures it would end with just blowing people up.

Donna and her parents - Well, Ben just wanted to be honest and let everyone know the truth. Donna’s upset and tells her real Dad (i.e. the Dad who raised her, not the one who fathered her) that he is her real Dad. And she’s right. So what was the point of the whole story, anyway?

Shelley and Bobby - Bobby suggests that Shelley marry him, but she reminds him she’s still married to Leo technically. They both bark like a dog when discussing him, almost as if they know he’s wearing a shock collar even though they don’t. When last seen, Leo was still holding that rope with his teeth. Maybe the spiders will die of boredom before he lets go. And Major Briggs at least looks back to normal, unharmed from his recent ordeal.

And finally poor Ed and Norma - Just when they thought they could be together, Nadine recovers her memory. The strange thing was that I was wrong about Mike. He was all set to commit to Nadine, probably even marry her. But now he’s lost her, Norma’s lost Ed, and Ed is stuck with Nadine. Wonder if her super-strength is gone now, too.

For years, I’ve heard that this show was a cult classic, but I remain unconvinced. It had a spark of weirdness early on, but it quickly petered out and went pretty much nowhere for the rest of its run. Poor Harry didn’t get much of a storyline. Josie was just there to suffer and look exotic. Except for her brief stint as the Japanese man, Catherine was pretty much wasting her time. Laura got killed and then her lookalike cousin got killed. The Killer was a bizarre being who possessed people and is still on the loose – possibly unkillable. And Dale wasn’t so squeaky clean. He’d had an affair with a married woman, though he paid for his sins thanks to her husband, and is still paying for them as the show ends.

For at least blowing up Windom Earle for good, I’ll give this one 7 cups of coffee that starts out frozen and eventually turns syrupy. (And if you waited long enough in the closing credits, you saw Laura’s face reflected in the coffee.) As a whole, I’d only give this show about a 5, even though it will probably score higher than that on my by the numbers post.

Best dialogue:

Laura: I’ll see you again in 25 years. (Prophetic, as it turned out.)


Member: Rank 5
Nice review. We'll talk about it in the next few days. I just watched the episode and will post my review tomorrow.


Member: Rank 5
And so it ends… Except that it doesn’t. And now I realize this was not a show that would fit our usual criteria. I had assumed The Twin Peaks series was a show in itself, and the movie (or movies) that came later would just shed some light on some obscure aspects of the plot, and the sequel would be about something else entirely. But this first part was just that, an open-ended first part. Obviously, the producers expected more seasons and more episodes, so some situations that were coming to a closure were reopened and the whole thing ended in a cliffhanger.

Well, first of all I’d like to say I’m surprised to learn King Arthur is buried in England. Next to Robin Hood and Merlin I suppose. This is the great thing about life; we always learn something new. And I knew Nadine would get her memory back after she was hit in the head. I called it! But unfortunately, that reset the story all the way back to what it used to be before Nadine’s amnesia plot line began, so nothing gets resolved.

I don’t if it’s the actress or the character, but Annie’s prayer was as unemotional as her speech. I’m starting to think this is more of an acting limitation than a deliberate choice for the character.

So, you enter the Black Lodge by passing by red velvet curtains in the forest; that was a weird and unsettling image.

Who’s Sylvia? I simply can’t remember her. Not that I care.

OK, so we have an old bank with old employees. I thought they were going to use the sleepy lady as the motif for a gag, but no, she was just background. Remember the narcoleptic museum curator lady from Pushing Daisies? For some reason, narcolepsy is always fun to poke fun at. But Dell was enough for us to make fun of old people, who are also very funny with their old people antics.

When Audrey asked for a drink, I thought she shouldn’t drink water if she didn’t intend to leave to go to the bathroom in the meantime. Not that that mattered, since all went kaboom very soon after that. However, the deposit boxes were way into the vault, which was way into the bank. No way the window panes could’ve shattered like that, much less Dell’s glasses could have been thrown all the way to the trees across the street. Anyway, that was an explosive way to end the story of Pete Martell and Andrew Packard. But what about Audrey? Well, I’ve heard she appears in the sequel, so she survives, but this incident might as well have been used to write her character off.

Bobby thought Germans were always on time. And I thought Americans were always on time. Anyway, Bobby and Shelly make a very shitty couple, and Shelly keeps making bad choices for the beautiful woman she is. Of coruse, as the show was meant to go on, I’m guessing the day she would become more mature and make better choices was still to come and her ending with Bobby was by no means her final destination. And speaking of shitty couples, they didn’t even bother to bring James back to the finale, so he was still “figuring things out,” which shows how useless a character he had become.

Wow, and Leo is still holding the cage with tarantulas with his teeth! I thought he had died in the previous episode. And the worst thing is that we don’t see how this is resolved. So, my guess is that he’s in hell and holding the rope that holds the tarantula cage for the last 27 years.

Sarah Palmer is channeling creatures from beyond now? Nothing related to the Black Lodge made sense, but that’s what I was expecting from David Lynch, not all the soapy story. Perhaps I should’ve written this review backwards and then inverted it or something. “I’ll see you again in 25 years.” Wow, did David Lynch really plan to make the sequel 25 years later? Was it all according to the plan? Or was it just a happy coincidence that he had a character say “see you in 25 years” and then get the chance to make a sequel 25 years later? Now I have to watch the sequel. Some day…

I’m surprised to learn both the dwarf and the giant are still alive. The singer and the waiter aren’t. I think the coffee was too thick in the beginning. I like strong, black coffee, but that’s ridiculous! I’m trying to imagine the hassle of shooting those scenes with the actors moving and speaking backwards, but my imagination is not enough.

OK, here’s my theory. The Black Lodge is a tesseract, and that place is a crack in the space-time continuum from which you have access to all dimensions. And whenever things don’t make sense and you want to make up a brainy explanation just throw the word tesseract that people will be impressed.

Earle tried to get Dale’s soul, but it was a trick and Bob got him instead because… reasons. That’s another thing I didn’t get, but perhaps the explanation is that Bob had other plans for Dale, like taking his soul himself, or taking his body or something.

So we ended stuck with Evil Cooper. I’m surprised Annie lived, which makes me thing that now that Evil Cooper is I charge she’ll no longer be important.

Now, excuse me, I need to brush my teeth.

The finale was good, everything Twin Peaks is supposed to be, but I’m annoyed it was a cliffhanger, so no 10 for it. The final episode gets 9 cans of scorched engine oil spilled over a bunch of sycamore trees.