‘Twin Peaks’

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that were once the se­ries’ hall­mark — back­wards talk­ing lit­tle peo­ple, omi­nous gi­ants — be­came tire­some. The show’s sec­ond sea­son suf­fered from bloat, and the nar­ra­tive took a plunge af­ter the Laura Palmer mys­tery was solved. View­ers bailed, and the show was un­cer­e­mo­ni­ously can­celed and aired its fi­nal episode in June 1991.

But a ded­i­cated core of fol­low­ers kept “Twin Peaks” alive — through fanzines, web­sites, and re-re­leases on VHS, DVD and Blu-Ray — and on Sun­day, “Twin Peaks” re­turns for an 18-episode re­vival on Show­time. Most of the prin­ci­pal cast is back, as are Lynch and Frost. And those who have been car­ry­ing a torch for the se­ries will fi­nally get an an­swer to the ques­tion that has bugged them for years: Just how is An­nie?

“How’s An­nie?” was a ques­tion asked by Dale Cooper (Kyle McLach­lan), the FBI agent who was sent to the small North­west­ern log­ging town of Twin Peaks to help solve the mys­tery of lo­cal prom queen Laura Palmer’s bru­tal mur­der. Coop was lured in by the town’s ma­jes­tic trees (they were Dou­glas Firs), its sump­tu­ous cherry pie and its damn fine cof­fee (both served at the Dou­ble R diner) and he de­cided to stay awhile.

But then he got trapped in­side the mys­te­ri­ous Black Lodge, a night­mare nether realm, and his dop­pel­ganger — lets call him evil Dale Cooper — took over his body. It was that Cooper that was seen in­quir­ing about the well be­ing of An­nie, Coop’s girl­friend (played by a young Heath- er Gra­ham), through an evil cackle af­ter bash­ing his head in a bath­room mir­ror as blood spilled down the front of his head.

Yes, it’s all quite con­fus­ing, but in the bizarro dream logic of “Twin Peaks,” it made sense. Be­sides, “Twin Peaks” wasn’t nec­es­sar­ily about nar­ra­tive, it was about mood: Plot took a back­seat to quirky char­ac­ters, An­gelo Badala­menti’s haunt­ing score, and the crazy, crazy world Lynch and Frost dreamed up for their homage to soap op­eras, small town se­crets and Amer­i­can ab­nor­mal­ity.

Its im­pact was felt through scores of im­i­ta­tors, some suc­cess­ful (“The Killing,” “Bates Mo­tel” and “Fargo” all have a lit­tle “Twin Peaks” in their DNA), some not (“Wild Palms”). Lynch him­self fol­lowed “Twin Peaks” with a film pre­quel, 1992’s “Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me,” the an­gri­est, loud­est, most po­lar­iz­ing film in his oeu­vre, which seemed to take per­verse pride in an­swer­ing none of the ques­tions left over from the se­ries.

Over the years, fans clam­ored for those an­swers, seek­ing out deleted scenes from “Fire Walk With Me” as if they were the holy grail. (When those deleted scenes fi­nally ar­rived, as part of “Twin Peaks” Blue-Ray re­lease in 2014, there were no an­swers, only more ques­tions.) The world of “Twin Peaks” and its many mys­ter­ies seemed dead for­ever.

Then, as stream­ing cul­ture made it pos­si­ble to res­ur­rect shows from the dead (see the “Full House” and “Gil­more Girls” re­vivals), hope was re­newed for a re­turn to “Twin Peaks.” When the re­launch was an­nounced in 2014, it sent fans into a frenzy. Film­ing started a year later.

Sun­day’s pre­miere on Show­time con­sists of two back-to­back episodes, which were not made avail­able in ad­vance for screen­ing pur­poses. The buildup has been big, with the “Twin Peaks” cast filling mag­a­zine cov­ers and the re­vival spark­ing re­newed in­ter­est in the orig­i­nal se­ries. How the new episodes will be re­ceived re­mains to be seen, es­pe­cially since our rap­tur­ous, un­for­giv­ing cul­ture has a ten­dency to chew things up, spit them out and move on to a new thing in record time.

But “Twin Peaks” is back, and for fans car­ry­ing a torch for the se­ries for 25-plus years, that is enough. If An­nie is any­thing like us, she is do­ing just fine.

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