I'm new here, so pardon me if I repeat anything obvious.
I'm struck by the dreamy qualities of this episode. Moreover, I think Dougie/Cooper's whole storyline is happening in a dream of some kind. Sort of obvious with "wake up" and "don't die" (remember that old cliche, if you die in a dream....). Janey-E and Sonny Jim seem like dream figures - outlines of characters that are only sort-of real. Dougie is dreaming of magic powers and can only half mutter replies based on what he's observing. The little backwards moments have already been commented on here and elsewhere. The stilted acting, etc. And I keep thinking back to the heightened reality of FWWM's first sequence (aka "Cooper's Dream") which sees some stylistic similarities in the Dougie storyline. Or how the first half of Mulholland Drive is dreamlike and heightened.
I'm also a dad, and I found the sequence with the truck collision disturbing, but also detached somehow. From the moment Carl looks up in the trees (anyone else see a face in the leaves?), everything gets dream-like: the weird game the mom and son are playing, etc. The way Carl looks at her and she almost seems consoled for a second... Perhaps that intersection is a metaphorical one.
Anyone else think Lorraine's make-up resembles Robert Blake in Lost Highway?
Anyway - great to read all of your posts! What a great show this is.