Follow Monsters of Television on Twitter

Wednesday, 1 of March of 2017

Category » DVD First Watch

DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “The Path to the Black Lodge”

“We are all love’s fools.”

It’s a terrible cliche, but it only became a cliche because it’s true. We do so very much because of love. Even the things we  do out of hate are because of love, for hate cannot exist where love has not yet been.

Take Earle, for example. His love turned to passion turned to obsession turned to hate turn to psychosis turned to him wearing a horse suit (best “disguise” so far, y’all – a horse suit). We find out here just exactly what the Black Lodge is and why Earle wants it: it’s a place where spirits make “evil for the sake of evil.” And that’s why Earle wants to find it. He wants the power of pure evil.

It’s all a little “mwahahahaha!” for my taste.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Variations on Relations”

I’m starting to get the feeling that this Earle thing is going to carry right into the TV movie ordeal that wraps up this show’s run. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I am starting to get a little bored with the standard chess move, someone dies, Earle’s crazy, Coop is concerned, just you wait til next week thing they have going on here. They need to mix it up, do something that gets me reinvested in what Earle is doing (mayhaps put in hints (like the one in this episode) of Leo building toward full defiance?). This might mean having to kill off a main character. I vote Donna.

Alas, Windom Earle did not die in a cave-in at Owl Cave at the end of the last episode like I had hoped happened. And we didn’t even get any great disguises this week to justify him still being around. Seriously, that fisherman get-up was pretty blah. Step up your game, crazy man!

Coop’s on his game, though, and finally is in the right place at the right time to put together some pieces.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “On the Wings of Love”

“Coincidence and fate figure largely in our lives.”

A chance bit of observational skills brought Log Lady and Daddy Briggs to the sheriff’s office together. A chance bit of doodling brought their tattoos together into one symbol. A chance bit of conversation led to from that symbol to Owl Cave. And a little bit of chance led to the gang finding some hidden doohickey in the wall of said cave.

NOT TO MENTION the fact that, based on his secret files, Windom Earle was involved in investigating UFOs back in the day. That right there is a DUN DUN DUUUNNN moment, y’all.

I don’t know whether to hope or not that Earle’s bit of mischief left him buried in the cave. On the one hand: hahaha, serves you right, you mental bastard! On the other hand: no more disguises. DILEMMA.

This episode may end with spelunking and secrets, but it begins with a whole lot of lovin’ – the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Wounds and Scars”

There’s this song I know from years ago that talked about the difference between tattoos and scars. One you get to commemorate or remember what you’ve gone through; the other you get because of what you’ve gone through.  I find the sentiment appropriate for this week’s Twin Peaks discussion.

There are all kinds of wounds and scars, and we run the full gamut of them in this episode. We also get a new face or two added to the clockwork, plus some twists I didn’t see coming (but probably should have).

Let’s start with my favorite and least favorite thing: Drunk Harry.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “The Condemned Woman”

“Every action has its consequences, my dear.”

Twin Peaks title cardLord, ain’t that the truth.

One of the most important aspects of plot and character development is that a character’s every action must lead to an appropriate and proportionate consequence. These consequences are the driving force behind the plot (or at least they should be), the motivation for what a character does and doesn’t do and where the story goes.

For its part, Twin Peaks is just one long string of cause and effect, with perhaps no story so cause-and-effect-y as the tale of Josie Packard, who is the main focus – and titular character – of this episode. Practically everyone she knows uses Josie for their own ends, poor dear. But she is by no means guilt-free.

Girl shot Cooper, y’all.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Slaves and Masters”

We are all, in our own ways, slaves and masters.

Twin Peaks title cardThrough a sense of responsibility, because of debts owed, on account of fear or love or hate, we are both slave and master – to ourselves and others. We are slaves to another’s whims, slave to our own passions. We are master of others because of their loyalty, master of ourselves only some of the time.

While there are many slave-master relationships at play in this episode, the main dynamic centers around – of course – one Mr. Windom Earle.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Double Play”

This show just loves the double. Whether it’s opposites attract or good vs. evil or identical personalities, Twin Peaks doesn’t pass up the chance to compare, contrast, and combine.

Twin Peaks title cardDouble has always been the name of the game in TV. The standard structure of an episode is A plot and B plot. You have your good guy(s) and your bad guy(s). There’s even the ubiquitous two-parter, usually used to bridge the mid-season hiatus and season-to-season breaks.

Twin Peaks itself is like one never-ending two-parter, with stories spilling over from episode to episode, or pausing to only to reappear a few episodes down the line. And then there’s the way the stories are matched up.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Checkmate”

Ah, Twin Peaks.

Twin Peaks title cardEvery time I try to do a straight analysis of this show, it turns into a gleeful or questioning recap. This oddball little show with its mishmash of genres and unrelated storylines and characters that disappear for episodes at a time only to pop up later as big plot points. Somehow it manages to be endearing, intriguing, and unsettling all at the same time. The only true defining through line is how off the wall it is.

I think my favorite thing about Twin Peaks is how everyone just rolls with whatever flavor of crazy is on the day’s menu.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “The Black Widow”

“Bobby, you know what you have to have in this world? Balance. Distance. Symmetry.”

Twin Peaks title cardRemember when we had this review thing going?

It’s been four months, give or take, since my last Twin Peaks post and I’d like to apologize for the delay. A new job, moving states, the death of my computer (R.I.P.), and various other issues conspired to keep me away, but the reviews are back!

Previously on Twin Peaks: Daddy Briggs was missing, Dennis/Denise showed up as part of the investigation into Cooper’s suspected drug trafficking, James was taken in by Trophy Wife, and there was a wedding.

Read more »


DVD First Watch: Twin Peaks – “Masked Ball”

Doubles. Everywhere a double.

Twin Peaks title cardFrom the grown woman who thinks she’s a teenager to the man who wants to be a woman – everyone in Twin Peaks has a duality to them that the show revels in exploring (or ignoring, as it sees fit). People aren’t always what they seem (James’s “I’m only quiet on the outside” being one of the big lines in the episode) and what they actually wind up being isn’t always good.

The dual-nature issue is directly represented by the entrance of the White Lodge/Black lodge dichotomy into the narrative. No doubt these lodges – and the spiritual experiences they promise – will come into play later as Cooper delves deeper into the mysteries of Twin Peaks and himself.

Read more »