Welcome to Twin Peaks.
“To introduce this story, let me just say it encompasses the all. It is beyond the fire, though few would know that meaning. It is a story of many…”
Though the Log Lady was alluding to the late Laura Palmer, her statement rings true for the burning passion of today’s Twin Peaks fans—Twin Peaks is truly a story of many. Millions have emerged in the 26 years between seasons two of Twin Peaks in 1991 and the highly anticipated season three coming out this Sunday on Showtime.
With a population of just 51,201, it’s mystifying how the town of Twin Peaks has attracted so much attention. The show only survived two seasons, after all. Nonetheless, lines like “damn good coffee” have been firmly lodged in the pop culture lexicon.
Where did all these fans come from? And where were they in the early ‘90s?
During the show’s run, many of today’s fans were too young to watch. But they’re grown now and ready to smell the coffee. Twin Peaks’ huge cult following has prepared for the show’s return by creating websites and artwork and planning events and parties in honor of the mysterious town in the Pacific Northwest.
Pieter Dom, creator of the fan page/Twin Peaks news site Welcome To Twin Peaks, tells BTRtoday that he was 11 when the pilot aired. He was hooked from the moment the theme played its first mournful bass note.
“I remember being fascinated with the photo of Laura Palmer’s blue-toned and plastic-wrapped face on the cover of our TV Guide, along with the bold words, ‘murder, sex, drugs,’” he says. “We re-watched the pilot three or four times until the next episode aired—it became a family event and we used to discuss everything that happened. In fact, we still do.”
Dom started the Welcome To Twin Peaks about seven years ago after noticing a lag in Twin Peaks interest.
“It felt like the show had become a relic of a bygone era, a synonym for that old ‘quirky’ TV show and that people, even passionate fans, had moved on,” he says. “The idea [of the site] was to build a fan community, rekindle the fire and get the conversation going again by every day, once a day, showing Twin Peaks was still very much alive in different forms.”
With over 170,000 likes on its Facebook page, Dom’s page is a key destination for Twin Peaks fans—and its host network. Showtime contacted him with hints about the new season. Dom was able to announce the show’s revival at the same time as the network.
“They had not let me in on the secret,” the super-fan says. “I just knew it was going to happen.”
Dom isn’t the only one keeping Twin Peaks fans percolating.
Anon Magazine is an online platform for artists with a bi-annual print zine and a very David Lynch-inspired aesthetic. The background of the site’s homepage has the black and white zig zags of the Black Lodge and the about section represents the brand with a photo of Laura Palmer.
Becky Bacsik, co-founder and editor-in-chief for Anon, and Trish Connelly, contributor to the site, combined forces to create a zine solely dedicated to Twin Peaks. Though Connelly was only three when the show aired and Bacsick wasn’t yet born, the two have still become obsessed with Lynch’s mysterious world.
“I love how real, yet unreal the story is; everyone is weird in their own way, everyone has a dirty secret,” Bacsik says about their passion for the show.
Connelly praised the expansive world Lynch created for the show.
“It’s filled with so many quirky, hilarious and layered characters, a distinct small town that remains of its own time and place, and his surreal atmosphere that brings an undeniable horror to the show, yet done in such a thought provoking and subtle way,” Connelly says.
Bacsik says the zine came together easily and credited the show’s rich world of ideas and characters for providing so much ready inspiration. She was impressed by how easily the show’s themes lent themselves to art.
“I was really drawn to the digital collage submitted by Alvaro Cordova titled ‘Laura’s Inner Scream,’” she says. “It features a picture of Laura Palmer lying down, reading and smoking a cigarette. She looks pretty innocent. And then there’s this grey-scale demon of Laura coming out of her, screaming. Though it’s a pretty simplistic piece, it really captures the entirety of Laura Palmer’s character so well.”
“I’ve pretty much entitled this ‘Twin Peaks’ Week’,” Connelly says about curating the event. Both her and Bacsik intend to re-watch everything Twin Peaks before gathering with friends Sunday night to enjoy doughnuts, a pot of damn good coffee and to view the premiere.
Located in the three-story venue Brooklyn Bazaar, the event replicated landmarks from the series on each floor, like the RR Diner equipped with free pie and coffee, the Palmer’s living room, and, of course, the Black Lodge. It also included performances by The Pink Room Burlesque, which featured dances by characters like Audrey, Nadine, the Log Lady and even the infamous Bob.
“It’s an honor to be able to partner with Showtime on this event and be able to bring this to life—we really feel like the experience speaks for itself,” Gabriel Rhoads, co-creator of BBQ Films, tells BTRtoday while dressed as a Twin Peaks deputy. “The thing about BBQ Films is that we are first and foremost fans. We select the things that we really love and we believe that the love comes through in the authenticity in the events that we create—that’s why the fans who come to enjoy this have as good a time as we do making this happen.”
Before the Twin Peaks event started there was a line wrapping around the block. Guests were decked out in their best Twin Peaks inspired apparel—with many sultry Audrey Hornes, dashing Agent Dale Coopers, and icy-blue Laura Palmers. And, of course, you could find a modestly dressed woman here and there cradling her log ever so dearly.
The wise Log Lady once said, “when this kind of fire starts, it is very hard to put out.” At the time she was trying to warn Laura Palmer of her impending murder. In our case, it suits the wildfire-like spread of Twin Peaks’ popularity.