Twin Peaks is one of the most popular crime drama television series of all time known for superbly combining the supernatural elements in modern settings.
The story of Twin Peaks follows the investigation by FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper into a brutal murder of a home coming queen Laura Palmer. The story takes place in a fictional town known as Twin Peaks in Washington. The show enjoyed a good run for two seasons before it was canceled and after more than 20 years it has returned to TV with the Twin Peaks: Returns series.
Twin Peaks – Story Background
Twin Peaks is known for its eccentric characters including the protagonist Dale Cooper himself and his obsessions with coffee and cherry pie. The setting is in the fictional town of Twin Peaks in Washington. Just like any other small town, Twin Peaks is a place where mostly everyone knows everyone. One fine morning though, a body of a young girl wrapped in clear plastic bag is discovered and quickly the news spreads across the town, changing the lives of some of the people forever. As the body of Laura Palmer is discovered, another girl, Ronette Pulaski is discovered in a fugue state walking on the state line. FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper is called for investigation. Dale Cooper recognizes the similarity between the murder of Laura Palmer and another victim named Teresa Banks, who was killed the previous year.
The murder reveals a gruesome reality of the people living in the town. It turns out that Laura Palmer was leading a double life. She was cheating on her boyfriend as well as working a prostitute for a pimp named Jacques Renault. She was also heavily into drugs. The murders lead to a series of events across the town. Laura’s father has a nervous breakdown. It seems that Benjamin Horne, the richest man in the town wants to destroy the lumber mill and kill the owner Catherine Martell so that he can purchase the land at a reduced price. He has a daughter named Audrey Horne who falls in love with Dale Cooper and starts helping him in his investigation.
But, the murder case isn’t just about a murder.
Soon we are introduced to the supernatural element that is playing a huge role in what is happening in the town. In his second night in the town Dale Cooper has a bizarre dream where he finds himself in the basement of the town’s hospital. There he meets a one-armed man, MIKE who informs Cooper that the killer is BOB, an entity from another world like himself. He also sees BOB in his dream as a gray-haired man in denim who tells him that he will continue killing humans. His dreams then change into a different settings: now he is twenty five years older sitting in a room of red curtains and he sees a dwarf also The Man from Another Place and Laura Palmer. The Man says something cryptic to Cooper and starts dancing while Laura whispers something in his ear. After waking up he convenes with his partner in the investigation Truman and recalls the dream. He realizes that the dream is symbolic and if he can decipher the symbols, he will know who killed Laura. Season one ends with Cooper getting shot by a masked gunman.
In the second season, after much confusion and suspense the killer is revealed to be Leyland Palmer. One of the spirit reveals him that Leyland was host to a lesser demonic entity BOB who possessed him all these years and killed Laura Palmer. Later BOB assumes full control of Leyland’s body and confesses to a series of crimes before forcing Leyland to commit suicide. But, all is not over for Dale. Before he could leave the town, his former FBI partner Windom Earle comes to the town and so begins another game. It is revealed that Dale Copper has an affair with the wife of Earle while she was in his protective custody. This led to Earle killing his wife and going mad. As a result he was admitted to the mental asylum. Now, he has escaped and he is seeking revenge on Dale. The dark woods surrounding the Twin Peaks hide many secrets and one of them is the existence of the White Lodge and the Black Lodge. It turns out to be mystical, extra-dimensional realms akin to Heaven and Hell. Cooper discovers that BOB, The Giant, and the Man from another Place all come from one of the two lodges. The real motive of Earle is revealed when he takes Anne (the girl Dale fall in love with) to the black lodge. There Dale encounters a wide range of strange things from doppelgangers of dead people to encoded prophesies regarding his future. Earle demands that Dale give up his soul to save Anne, which Dale agrees. BOB arrives and kills Earle and brings back Dale to life. After the incident when Dale is recovering from his wounds, he discovers upon looking at the mirror that he is now the host for BOB.
For the fans of mystery, supernatural elements, secret worlds and urban legends, Twin Peaks is the perfect show. This popular show has inspired a wide range of merchandise including cool and spooky t-shirts with some of its interesting quotes from the show.