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Jake

Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier discussion

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I just got the Final Dossier last night and am about half way through. 

 

I'm not going to say much until I get done with the book, but what do you all think?

 

Spoiler note: If you're spoiler-averse I recommend not reading this thread if you haven't read the book, as the book is nothing but page after page reveals of characters' fates. 

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I suppose I liked it even though I guess it kind of removes some of the mystery from the recent season and the way it was structured was so much less interesting than the Secret History book but was about stuff I actually cared about. It also kind of ruins Audrey's scenes in the new season for me? So basically that was her life anyway up until the last year or two, and then she was just imagining it was her life? I also hoped something more interesting happened to Annie.

 

I'm just glad we got that M.T. Wentz storyline straightened out. I was worried that Cooper's messing with time somehow caused it to go away, as setup in the Secret History book, but it turns out Norma just had a stepmother that she called Mom. Thank god for that.

 

also James apparently had an insane life after season 2.

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I really enjoyed it. I'm glad it answered a lot of questions for the "real" world while allowing Coop and Laura's story to maintain its mystery. I think what it did best was cast a lens over the season to sharpen its focus. 

 

However, Mark Frost really gets cruel with some of the women. That may be coincidental since Vivian and---Lana(?)--weren't his characters and he tends to happily disregard the ones he had no hand in creation. But there's no way to know for sure; regardless it comes off poorly. On the other hand, the way he casts aside Jame's story in the back half of Season 2 is particularly funny.

 

The reveal that Sarah Palmer is the bugfrog girl *and* Judy wasn't necessary, but appreciated.

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As a whole, I was sorta underwhelmed. Like most things, I'm glad it exists, but I wish it was a little bit more substantial. Not sure how I feel about the existing timeline changing as a result of Laura disappearing, instead of it being a wholly separate timeline/version of reality, but that might be a distinction only I care about.

 

The Annie section very much felt to me like he was making sure the character was still around and available in case they wanted to use her later. He even made a point out of how she doesn't look as if she's aged a lot since Heather Graham herself barely looks like she's aged.

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Feeling pretty underwhelmed. Not sure I like all of the over-explaining of details - which, I know, it's Frost, so maybe I shouldn't have expected anything more. I actually think if I could un-read it, I would.

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Is this one more of a novel than the Secret History? It sounded like Secret History had a lot of visual flair that isn't conveyed in a eBook or audiobook. I want to buy the Final Dossier for my Kindle but don't want to miss out on any visuals.

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It's almost all writing this time. It'd work perfectly well as a kindle book. 

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New fan of not only Twin Peaks, but your show.  This has been my favorite Twin Peaks podcast.  I saw some of the original series, but I was 8 or 9 when it was on.  I saw Fire Walk With Me when I was 12 and actually hated it.  It's amusing to me that on your podcast for part 8 you mentioned not knowing what a non-fan would think if that was the first episode they saw.  For all intents and purposes, that was me - Part 8 was my in.  I've gone back to watch everything and followed along with your podcast.

 

Anyways, I quite liked The Final Dossier.  I think Frost did as well a job as could be done of all the things he had to do: Fill in more backstory on the characters (such as Leo and Norma), fill in some more details from the 25 year gap, and provide some context to certain things in the show.  I was satisfied with the stories of most characters.  I don't care for Audrey's fate; it also didn't explain anything that we actually saw.  I have to wonder if Frost based some amount of Donna's arc on Lara Tlynn Boyle's actual life.  

 

I actually don't feel like a ton was actually revealed.  The big one people are talking about is the fact that Cooper changed time and Laura Palmer disappeared instead of having died.  But we saw that very thing happen.  We still don't get an explanation of Part 18, and "two birds with one stone" is still unexplained.  Most of the things that felt like finality were character bits and not any "lore."  

 

Confirmation that Sarah was the "frogmoth girl" was...something, though it doesn't explain what that means.  (Also, we were privy to one egg and of one frogmoth; we were clearly shown multiple speckled eggs of the type that housed the frogmoth come out of the barf; how do we know that some other people who fell unconscious didn't also have this happen to them?  Just a dumb thought I had.)  I'm also not completely sure what to make of the fact that Sarah's middle name is Judith.  She was named that long before she was ever possibly "possessed," even if you think the possession began with the frogmoth.  Yet that isn't something Frost would write if it weren't important somehow.  Not sure what to make on that. 

 

Also, is it me or does it feel like this actually felt like at least partially a possible setup for the story to continue?  

 

I loved Frost's writing here as well; I think - in my opinion - that he clearly intimately knows the characters and I had no problem hearing it in the voice of Agent Preston, or Albert's voice in the autopsy, etc.

 

Lastly, and I apologize for the length here, I don't see that anyone has mentioned this:  Most of what was in TFD was guessed / figured out by most fans.  But the book goes out of its way to link two things that I had not actually thought of: Jeffries and Cooper.  Much is made of Jeffries' being distraught at learning what year it was.  The last line of the series is Cooper asking what year it is and is clearly distraught.  Possibly Jeffries dealing with "Joudy" led him to some messed up things which led to him being in the tin machine (I LOVED that they made David Bowie's character a tin machine, though I doubt that was intentional).  Is that what is now Cooper's destiny?  I also think that perhaps the Jeffries we see could have come back from a time during The Return (after his meeting with Cooper's double) thus his "Who do you think that is there?" with regards to Cooper.  Perhaps he overshot his time travel and went back to before the double was out.  He did tell Cooper to "be specific."  

 

I'll leave it there.  Thank you for making a thread for this and I am still loving your podcast.  

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I'm confused by people saying the book declares the timeline has changed re: Laura's fate. Somewhere in the first half of the book it talks about Leland being arrested for the murder of his daughter. Doesn't that pretty specifically indicate the timeline did NOT change? Did I misread that passage?

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Did you finish it yet, because it gets pretty explicit at the end.

 

As I understand it, the timeline changes (for Tammy at least) over the course of the book. By the end of it, she's saying her memory of the past is getting fuzzy and talks about how Leland actually killed himself a year after his daughter disappeared.

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18 minutes ago, ThatThomas said:

Did you finish it yet, because it gets pretty explicit at the end.

 

As I understand it, the timeline changes (for Tammy at least) over the course of the book. By the end of it, she's saying her memory of the past is getting fuzzy and talks about how Leland actually killed himself a year after his daughter disappeared.

 

Oh weird okay. I'm half way through. 

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