Twin Peaks season 1 = A New Hope-Empire Strikes Back

Jun 19, 2007
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#1
Twin Peaks season 2 = Return of the Jedi
  • inconsistent; high highs, low lows
  • creaky storyline; spinning its wheels
  • an ending almost everyone agrees is good
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me = Prequel Trilogy
  • chronological prequel to the original
  • product of the original creator
  • explores characters/storyline better left to the imagination
  • basically, this tarantino quote: "After I saw Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me at Cannes, David Lynch had disappeared so far up his own ass that I have no desire to see another David Lynch movie until I hear something different. And you know, I loved him. I loved him."
Twin Peaks season 3 = The Last Jedi
  • chronological decades later sequel to original
  • baffling and/or misguided story directions
  • skates by on “we subverted your expectations!”
  • wastes characters/actors from the original
  • dull, uninteresting, and unlikable new characters
  • cringeworthy/facepalm/jump-the-shark moments
  • disappointing and unenjoyable to watch in general
  • laura dern in a hunger games wig

season 3 could also be equated with the prequel trilogy when you talk about the original creator going off the deep end, midochlorian-eqsue lore, super stilted/wooden acting and dialogue, and the sheer number of jump-the-shark moments.
 
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Jun 25, 2015
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Finland
#3
Yes. Just as Return of the Jedi is better than A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back, Season 2 of Twin Peaks is better than Season 1, I don't care what anyone says.

Now, Season 3? I still don't quite know what to think about it :D
I haven't watched it since it was first shown and while there were absolutely plenty to hate or dislike or be disappointed about I've kinda grown this weird craving to watch the whole thing through again. There are things in it that I still have very fond memories of. I oddly think about that season if not every week then every other week.



I'm 3 episodes into season 1 and I think it's absolute rubbish. I'm really struggling to see why this is as popular as it is.
There are a few episodes where if you don't start to like the show you can drop it alltogether.

First is the one with the dream in the first season.

If that doesn't raise your interest level, then the next episode would be the first episode of Season 2. If by the end of that episode you are not into the series at all, you might want to stop watching. For me, that episode is what ultimately sets the tone of what Twin Peaks is and what is interesting in it.

If you are still uncertain, you might want to watch until you've seen the 7th episode of Season 2.
If not interested at all, you can absolutely stop watching. But if there is some interest left, you should watch the whole thing through just for the last episode which is the best last episode of any season of any series ever.
 
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Feb 2, 2009
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#8
Twin Peaks season 2 = Return of the Jedi
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me = Prequel Trilogy
Twin Peaks season 3 = The Last Jedi


Discuss.

Meh. Season 2 has some of the all-time best episodes and moments in the entire run, it just sags badly after the studio interfered and forced Frost and Lynch to prematurely drop the bomb in episode 14 (which is confusing cos its actually the 15th ep or S2E07.) There's some good stuff after that point and it does rally somewhat by the end, but the first third of s2 is peak TP.

So no, considering Jedi was the point at which Lucas sold his sold for marketing dollars (fucking ewoks, Wookies apparently not kid-friendly enough), there's no relation really.

The great thing about FWWM and The Return is how uncompromising they both are, which is absolutely not something you can say about anything in SW post Empire.

People were taken aback by Fire's abrasive darkness, and with the third series Lynch made it extremely obvious that it was a return to his vision of TP, not a rehash or nostalgia trip to please the fanbase. The 25 year gap is incredibly real and heavy in The Return, which fits perfectly with its ruminative musings on the nature on the time in the story/mythology.

Its authentic, in a way that something like The Last Jedi is absolutely fake and false. Luke hasn't aged in TLJ, he's simply rewritten as a character to fulfill a narrative function.
 
Jan 19, 2007
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#10
I'm 3 episodes into season 1 and I think it's absolute rubbish. I'm really struggling to see why this is as popular as it is.
It's a slow burner.

You get it into your head it's about Laura Palmer and it's going to be a who dunnit, but it's really not. It's more about the characters that were around her than it is about her, she's just the device used to introduce the viewers to those characters.

It's definitely not a 'I didn't mind it' sort of series, you'll either love it or hate it. Irrespective, I don't think anyone has just loved it jumping in, it takes a good amount of time before you acclimatise to what is happening and the way the story is presented.
 
Jun 25, 2015
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Finland
#11
It's a slow burner.

You get it into your head it's about Laura Palmer and it's going to be a who dunnit, but it's really not. It's more about the characters that were around her than it is about her, she's just the device used to introduce the viewers to those characters.
As a massive Twin Peaks fan, I think this mentality of the people responsible for the creative parts of making the show was what killed the show. Lynch talked about this golden goose that laid golden eggs and how Laura's death brought up many golden eggs and when that was solved the golden goose was killed. Now, I love Lynch and I love Twin Peaks but what Lynch said is bullshit. The series were at its absolute peak every time they went further with solving the crime. Laura's death and the mythology behind the reasons why something like that happens was the driving force.

The viewer count dropped already throughout the first season (and by the way, that was the time when Lynch wasn't around much because he was filming Wild at Heart - not in the second season that is incorrectly brought up so many times). It got back its viewers when things got back to deal with Laura. People and Lynch say solving the crime killed the show, or the golden goose, but they are wrong. What killed the show was not being able to continue dealing with Laura after solving the crime. They handled the aftermath terribly. They could've gone really deep with who the killer was and what the reactions to the townspeople were but that was basically all handled in one single scene and that was it. Can anyone seriously say they would rather have the show without the scenes that revealed the killer?

They had the golden goose alive and well even after solving the crime but they threw it in the garbage bin because they had the misunderstanding of what really made the goose to lay the golden eggs. They TRIED to continue with the "but it's the characters in the town that matter" line of thinking but it was a mistake.

I still love even the second half of the second season but I can clearly see what the biggest mistake was. Actually solving the crime was for the best of the series. Without it there wouldn't be the amazing 7th episode of 2nd season and even more, there wouldn't be the best series finale ever made if they hadn't solved the crime. It's just that they completely ignored all the possibilities the reveal created. I could've easily seen a full season dealing with what happened in S02E07-S02E09. But no, they brushed it off as if it didn't matter at all.

The golden eggs weren't the Packard sawmill or the drug smuggling or love triangles. The golden eggs were everything that directly were connected to Laura's murder physically, metaphysically and philosophically. The things that saved the second half of the second season from being a total disaster (and I'm saying this even though I love Dick Tremayne, Lana and even Little Nicky) were the things that started to get back dealing with the metaphysical and philosophical issues of the original crime.
 
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Apr 17, 2018
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#12
First thing I saw was accidentally catching Fire Walk With Me on TV late one night. Pure class. I could live with that alone. Later watched the series up until the big reveal (which I already knew of course). My memory of it is hazy but I liked the atmosphere and there was plenty of fun stuff but it did feel like it was dragging by the 2nd season which is why I never made it to the end. Not convinced the new stuff is worth bothering with.

Really wish we had got that Mulholland Drive series instead back in 2001.
 
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AV

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May 31, 2018
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#14
  • AV

    AV

I'm 3 episodes into season 1 and I think it's absolute rubbish. I'm really struggling to see why this is as popular as it is.
Dave Foster Wallace coined the term Lynchian as the unbelievably grotesque existing in a kind of union with the unbelievably banal. That is Twin Peaks through and through. It's a relentlessly cheesy soap opera which now and again tangents into the inexplicably weird, and it's total marmite. Honestly, if you don't like it now, I reckon you should get out quickly. Season 1 is Twin Peaks at its best. As a fan, I would call half of season 2 borderline unwatchable. It was popular, so studio execs ordered that they somehow artificially drag the thing out, resulting in the 2nd season being stuffed with filler. The movie is Twin Peaks on steroids and the third season drops the cheese almost altogether in favour of some of the strangest stuff that's ever been in a television program.
 
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Kadayi

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#15
I'm 3 episodes into season 1 and I think it's absolute rubbish. I'm really struggling to see why this is as popular as it is.
It's a Marmite show as others have mentioned. You either love it or hate it. I get the impression you're not digging it so I suggest giving it a pass or possibly revisiting it down the road. You might find on a rewatch of the pilot etc things settle in much better.
 
Feb 2, 2009
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#17
As a massive Twin Peaks fan, I think this mentality of the people responsible for the creative parts of making the show was what killed the show. Lynch talked about this golden goose that laid golden eggs and how Laura's death brought up many golden eggs and when that was solved the golden goose was killed. Now, I love Lynch and I love Twin Peaks but what Lynch said is bullshit. The series were at its absolute peak every time they went further with solving the crime. Laura's death and the mythology behind the reasons why something like that happens was the driving force.

The viewer count dropped already throughout the first season (and by the way, that was the time when Lynch wasn't around much because he was filming Wild at Heart - not in the second season that is incorrectly brought up so many times). It got back its viewers when things got back to deal with Laura. People and Lynch say solving the crime killed the show, or the golden goose, but they are wrong. What killed the show was not being able to continue dealing with Laura after solving the crime. They handled the aftermath terribly. They could've gone really deep with who the killer was and what the reactions to the townspeople were but that was basically all handled in one single scene and that was it. Can anyone seriously say they would rather have the show without the scenes that revealed the killer?

They had the golden goose alive and well even after solving the crime but they threw it in the garbage bin because they had the misunderstanding of what really made the goose to lay the golden eggs. They TRIED to continue with the "but it's the characters in the town that matter" line of thinking but it was a mistake.

I still love even the second half of the second season but I can clearly see what the biggest mistake was. Actually solving the crime was for the best of the series. Without it there wouldn't be the amazing 7th episode of 2nd season and even more, there wouldn't be the best series finale ever made if they hadn't solved the crime. It's just that they completely ignored all the possibilities the reveal created. I could've easily seen a full season dealing with what happened in S02E07-S02E09. But no, they brushed it off as if it didn't matter at all.

The golden eggs weren't the Packard sawmill or the drug smuggling or love triangles. The golden eggs were everything that directly were connected to Laura's murder physically, metaphysically and philosophically. The things that saved the second half of the second season from being a total disaster (and I'm saying this even though I love Dick Tremayne, Lana and even Little Nicky) were the things that started to get back dealing with the metaphysical and philosophical issues of the original crime.
The problem I think was that the Laura Palmer mystery was always intended to be the central thread of mystery that drove the narrative forwards, so when it was prematurely "solved" it basically left the show rudderless. Which was a real problem because Frost and Lynch needed time to rebuild a new core to connect all the disparate "town" characters to it.

If you look at how the show works narratively, Cooper's mission to solve Laura's murder is the catalyst for almost everything that happens. At the most basic level its what keeps him in Twin Peaks, but it also connects him to all the other sub-stories which initially present themselves as red-herrings in the investigation.

Once the reveal is made that there's an "outside evil" to blame, those connections are broken and cannot be easily remade. Worse they become clearly secondary to the discovering the mysteries of the woods and the whole character of the show becomes more overtly fantastical. I can imagine this being really problematic to Lynch particularly, as his approach is most often to base in reality but then skew and distort it with weird or surrealistic elements. He trades on normalcy being disrupted unexpectedly and inexplicably by the fantastic, which can't really work when the premise already establishes the supernatural element.

This is the thing that differentiates FWWM and The Return. In both instances the supernatural aspect is a given, its the new "normal", so in order to jar the audience into a reaction Lynch needs to turn other aspects way up. This explains the harshness of Fire and the extreme strangeness of The Return.
 
Sep 4, 2018
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#19
The problem I think was that the Laura Palmer mystery was always intended to be the central thread of mystery that drove the narrative forwards
i don't think so. when the show started, her murder was the jumping off point but it was always going to go into other mysteries and other plotlines. Lynch hated that the murder turned into the central focus that was solved, called it "killing the goose that is laying these golden eggs".

hence the golden eggs in TPS3. episode 8 has Laura literally in a golden egg, in the middle of a mysterious episode that has no resolution. the point shouldn't be clearer: continue the unending mystery.
 
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Sep 4, 2018
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#21
ANH = Season 1 (classic)
ESB = first half of Season 2 (classic & expanded)
ROTJ = Laura's murder solved episode from S2 (fake happy ending)
TFA = second half of season 2 (zombie show desperately trying to recapture magic of the original)
TLJ = final episode of season 2 (clearing the table & killing off beloved characters)
Prequel Trilogy = FWWM / The Missing Pieces (the public not ready for this)

nothing in SW really on the level of season 3. if the follow up to TLJ actually did reject everything and forge it's new path then yes but that's not happening. SW is an entirely commercial IP at this point.

maybe the Holiday Special in terms of how ambient and weird it is. Chewie's family talking in un-subbed wookie dialect for 15 minutes is sort of like the broom sweeping scene in it's uncompromising immersion.
 
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Feb 2, 2009
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#22
i don't think so. when the show started, her murder was the jumping off point but it was always going to go into other mysteries and other plotlines. Lynch hated that the murder turned into the central focus that was solved, called it "killing the goose that is laying these golden eggs".

hence the golden eggs in TPS3. episode 8 has Laura literally in a golden egg, in the middle of a mysterious episode that has no resolution. the point shouldn't be clearer: continue the unending mystery.
I don't think I got across what I meant. Yes, the Laura thread was the jumping off point, the vehicle by which other plot threads were connected in. Like for instance the Renault Brothers angle, or all that gets dredged up once Donna and James start investigating Laura's meal route.

Its all within the town and its community.

Once it becomes about the Black/White Lodge its much more esoteric and disconnected from all the stuff that's happening to most of the characters. Look at where the "resolution" of Laura's murder ends up, so many story-arcs needs to get reset/reorientated to form a shape for the show.

The problem with the second half of season 2 is that every catalyzing event comes in from the outside and somehow has to be massaged into relevance to the existing characters. James whole road-trip thing being the worst example, it feels like a bolted on sub-plot that exists just to give that character something to do because that's exactly what it is. It has zero relevance to anything else and doesn't contribute towards TP as a whole.
 
Jun 19, 2007
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#25
What does this mean? I heard Season 3 was quite good.
  • chronological decades later sequel to original
  • baffling and/or misguided story directions
  • skates by on “we subverted your expectations!”
  • wastes characters/actors from the original
  • dull, uninteresting, and unlikable new characters
  • cringeworthy/facepalm/jump the shark moments
  • disappointing and unenjoyable to watch in general
  • laura dern in a hunger games wig
 
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Jun 19, 2007
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#28
Meh. Season 2 has some of the all-time best episodes and moments in the entire run, it just sags badly after the studio interfered and forced Frost and Lynch to prematurely drop the bomb in episode 14 (which is confusing cos its actually the 15th ep or S2E07.) There's some good stuff after that point and it does rally somewhat by the end, but the first third of s2 is peak TP.

So no, considering Jedi was the point at which Lucas sold his sold for marketing dollars (fucking ewoks, Wookies apparently not kid-friendly enough), there's no relation really.

The great thing about FWWM and The Return is how uncompromising they both are, which is absolutely not something you can say about anything in SW post Empire.

People were taken aback by Fire's abrasive darkness, and with the third series Lynch made it extremely obvious that it was a return to his vision of TP, not a rehash or nostalgia trip to please the fanbase. The 25 year gap is incredibly real and heavy in The Return, which fits perfectly with its ruminative musings on the nature on the time in the story/mythology.

Its authentic, in a way that something like The Last Jedi is absolutely fake and false. Luke hasn't aged in TLJ, he's simply rewritten as a character to fulfill a narrative function.
afaik, the prequel trilogy and tlj actually are fairly uncompromising. the stewards of both mostly had complete control/freedom to do what they wanted, for better or worse (mostly if not completely for the worse).

also, season 3 simply not being a nostaliga-fest isn't enough to be good, it also has to be good. thats where i feel the last jedi and the discussion around that movie starts to parallel season 3 and discussion around that.

Season 2
  • inconsistent; high highs, low lows
  • creaky storyline; spinning its wheels
  • an ending almost everyone agrees is good

Fire Walk With Me

  • chronologically a prequel to the original
  • product of the original creator
  • explores characters/subject matter better left to the imagination
  • also this tarantino quote: "After I saw Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me at Cannes, David Lynch had disappeared so far up his own ass that I have no desire to see another David Lynch movie until I hear something different. And you know, I loved him. I loved him."

on that note, season 3 could also be equated with the prequel trilogy when you talk about the original creator going off the deep end, midochlorian-eqsue lore, super stilted/wooden acting and dialogue, and the sheer number of jump-the-shark moments.
 
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Jun 25, 2015
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#29
I'm curious, what about season 2 makes you prefer it to season 1 overall?
I didn't care for the sawmill plotline in season 1 at all. Like really, I saw the series the first time in 1991 when I was 8-9 years old and since then the sawmill stuff has been mostly a borefest and only maybe in the past 10 years I've been able to enjoy that stuff more.
Also Ed/Norma/Nadine love triangle became interesting only after the suicide attempt.
Shelly/Bobby/Leo stuff was at its best in season 2 too.
More Bob. More Mike. More Albert. Gordon Cole. Dick Tremayne. The Black Lodge stuff.

Top 3 episodes are all from that season. Maybe even top 4. Or top 5 even.
 
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Jun 19, 2007
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#30
I didn't care for the sawmill plotline in season 1 at all. Like really, I saw the series the first time in 1991 when I was 8-9 years old and since then the sawmill stuff has been mostly a borefest and only maybe in the past 10 years I've been able to enjoy that stuff more.
Also Ed/Norma/Nadine love triangle became interesting only after the suicide attempt.
Shelly/Bobby/Leo stuff was at its best in season 2 too.
More Bob. More Mike. More Albert. Gordon Cole. Dick Tremayne. The Black Lodge stuff.

Top 3 episodes are all from that season. Maybe even top 4. Or top 5 even.
Fair! I was just curious since 1 being better than 2 overall seems to be a nearly universal opinion. So I was interested to hear the other side of things.
 
Jun 25, 2015
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#31
Fair! I was just curious since 1 being better than 2 overall seems to be a nearly universal opinion. So I was interested to hear the other side of things.
Yeah, that at least used to be the "universal" opinion. But then again there were lots of people who said the whole season 2 was shit and that the series was good only for the first season, even though they all loved the stuff until the killer's reveal. I think many of them actually thought the first season ended with the killer's reveal.

And then people used to say season 2 was shit because Lynch wasn't there but was filming Wild at Heart (hell, even Lynch himself said this) when all the evidence show he was actually gone for most of the first season and not the second. Wild at Heart was released before season 2 even started. And Gordon Cole was only in the second season.

Oh man I was plagued with nightmares because of this show when I was a kid but couldn't get enough of it. I used to loan The Secret Diary of Laura Palmer from the local library over and over again. I was so damn terrified but at the same time fascinated by all the sinister stuff in the series and in that book. I remember when I was in grade 3 and we had to show and write about a book we had read. We had to draw some picture of it too. I had the Twin Peaks book and draw a picture of Bob singing a song with Sarah's voice in Laura's nightmare that was depicted in the book and my teacher said she thinks I perhaps shouldn't be reading books like that.

As an interesting trivia, when it aired the second time in Finland in 1995 the whole show actually ended with the killer's reveal. Not even showing the next couple of episodes after that but just showing the episode where the killer's identity is shown and then putting "the end" text along with the end credits. It must've been quite a shock for many who didn't know it's supposed to continue :D
That year Fire Walk with Me was also shown on tv. I taped it on VHS and for the next few months I watched it once almost every day.

Shit the stuff made my nights terrible. It was horrible to try to sleep when I'm thinking that if I now open my eyes the damn midget and/or Bob will be staring right in front of my face, and at the same time thinking if I fall asleep I'm going to be visited by them in a nightmare :D But still I couldn't get enough of it and while there were nights I truly regretted I had ever seen the show I actually ended up learning so much about life and people from the series and books and the movie and had lots of amazing moments wondering about the things in that town that I'm actually happy I got to see it so early in my life.

Man what a shock it was to hear Season 3 was going to be made after being into Twin Peaks that much for that long time... It could only be either the best thing ever or the biggest disappointment ever - and in the weirdest possible way it managed to be both :D

Sorry for rambling. Got pretty excited suddenly! :D
 
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Sep 4, 2018
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#34
Once it becomes about the Black/White Lodge its much more esoteric
interestingly enough, this happens in the 2nd episode of the show. Cooper visits the Black Lodge in a dream at the end of the show (which also features Audrey's iconic, surreal "Isn't it just dreamy?" dance) the show was esoteric from the start, more or less. the whole "I'll see you in 25 years" appears in this, just 1 episode into the series.

i like season 2 but tbh it lost full potency following season 1. not a fan of what they did with Audrey, and the IRL behind-the-scenes politics getting in the way of her & Cooper's natural magnetic chemistry. they killed that plotline, one of the most popular ships in pop history. Windom Earle was very boring to me. the James plotline is beyond dull (and the James jokes in S3 "he's the coolest" was a wonderful way to remedy his final unfortunate plotlines). S2 has some serious stinkers/clunkers but then again even at it's lowest points it still has that charm, it just veers closer to soap opera cheese. when Lynch comes in at the end and upsets all these cheesy storylines, like Nadine being super-powered and thinking she is in high school, that dumb thing gets wiped away, and now they are all sitting on couches addressing the reality of their marriage and WTF has really been happening to these characters that have just been played with.

Lynch's masterful finale to season 2 is a shocking and subversive resetting of the puzzle. The Last Jedi wishes it was 1/100th as clever as this. here the all-time hero ends the show evil, bloodied, and cackling, mocking the pathos of his former good self, the one person that centered us in this crazy world. it is genuinely disturbing to see this icon of good turned so instantly evil and twisted. it was a brilliant way to end the show tbh. TLJ hints at doing this, at Rey being turned dark or Kylo turned light, but they ultimately do the same things as always in the end. it is pretend subversion.
 
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#36
interestingly enough, this happens in the 2nd episode of the show. Cooper visits the Black Lodge in a dream at the end of the show (which also features Audrey's iconic, surreal "Isn't it just dreamy?" dance) the show was esoteric from the start, more or less. the whole "I'll see you in 25 years" appears in this, just 1 episode into the series.
3rd episode. The pilot should be counted in too.

However, the European version of the pilot already has that scene so technically it was already in the first episode.
The European pilot is interesting in that when that dream happens in the series and when Cooper tells about the dream to Harry and Lucy, he actually describes things that were shown only in that European pilot and weren't shown in the actual series at all. So the European pilot ending with Bob getting shot is actually technically canon.

just wondering, yall seen FWWM have u seen The Missing Peices? some great stuff there, some of it incorporated into Season 3.
Yeah, I had been waiting for the deleted scenes since I learned about their existence in late 90's but it felt impossible to ever be able to see them. When the blu-ray box that includes those scenes was announced it was like the holy grail was finally found. I actually still had my then 20 years old CRT tv and only a dvd player (bought around 2001) up until that point but finally got a flat modern tv and a blu-ray player because that was the only way I was going to be able to see it.

I wasn't disappointed. Watching The Missing Pieces was amazing from beginning to end. Having read the script to the movie several times and seeing Bob talking I was afraid it was going to be bad if those parts were included. Bob really never were at its best when he spoke in the series... And I thought maybe him talking was initially removed from the Convenience Store scene because he didn't sound good, but boy was I wrong! The whole scene was more terrifying than ever before and Bob's "I have the fury of my own momentum" line was even better than I could've ever hoped for.

Seeing The Missing Pieces was a dream come true.

Fire Walk with Me is my all-time favorite movie. Watched it daily when I was 13-14. Have seen it more than any other movie. The Missing Pieces made the whole thing only better, except for that damn stupid "da shit came out of my asshole" line - totally ruins the moment right there). And I think the original takes from the "we're not going to talk about Judy" part were better than the one used in Missing Pieces (and eventually in Season 3 too). Bowie's performance is much better in the movie than it is in The Missing Pieces. And I think the original "who do you think this is there" line works and sounds much better than the "who do you think that is there" line does.