[Editor’s Note: The following review contains spoilers from “Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier,” a new book by Mark Frost, and “Twin Peaks: The Return.”]
To get right to it: For anyone interested enough to click on this article, “Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier” is almost certainly worth reading in full. (And with the holidays coming up, why not put it on your wish list?) Engrossing, efficient, and with just the right amount of personality, Mark Frost’s 145-page novel provides both necessary and superfluous information related to the series — especially “The Return” — all of which can be digested quickly and enjoyably.
Framed as a report from FBI Agent and newly inducted Blue Rose Task Force member Tamara Preston (played by Chrysta Bell in “The Return”) to her boss and FBI Deputy Director Gordon Cole (David Lynch), the book consists mainly of case files. Most cover individuals ranging from Shelly Johnson to Windom Earle, but there are also sections on The Double R Diner, Twin Peaks (the town), and a briefing near the end simply titled “Today.”
Frost creates a cohesive narrative throughout the dossier. Anyone who’s not up-to-date on the series will be lost, and photographs of the characters would’ve aided in processing all the names tossed around within. But as a companion piece to a second (or 10th) viewing of “The Return,” or with the aid of Google, putting together names and faces isn’t difficult. Such interaction outside the text can actually improve the experience; as if you’re Gordon Cole, checking out facts and backstory as you read this newly submitted report.
And it is new: Dated September 6, 2017, Tammy’s analysis covers everything through “The Return” and beyond. Though the juiciest information has already begun to leak online, IndieWire combed through the text to come up with nine additional highlights. Many more can be found within — so please, dear readers, investigate for yourselves — but below are key takeaways for those looking to continue their assessment of “Twin Peaks.”
Sarah Palmer Is the Little Girl from “Part 8,” Who Let a Bug Crawl Into Her Mouth
In the final pages of the book, Frost discusses what happened to Twin Peaks after Cooper disappeared again. The biggest change: Laura Palmer never died. She simply disappeared.
This is in line with what happened at the end of “The Return,” where Palmer’s body is shown disappearing from the beach after Agent Cooper prevents her from returning to the scene of her murder. He saved her life, but he also established a new timeline where she vanished without a trace and was never found.
We (kind of) know what happened to her thanks to the “Return’s” finale, but one of the unanswered questions was: What was going on with Sarah Palmer, Laura’s mother, when she pulled back her face to reveal a black demon and then bit a dude’s neck off?
It turns out that the little girl shown in “Part 8” was Sarah Palmer. She was living in Los Alamos, New Mexico after her father, a Department of Defense employee, got a job there as a subcontractor. She was the one who went on a date with a local boy, and she was the one who let a small creature crawl inside her mouth after falling asleep to the Woodsman’s incantation.
In “Twin Peaks: The Final Dossier,” Frost says her parents found Sarah “unconscious and unresponsive” and rushed her to the hospital. She came around on the ride there, and doctors found nothing wrong with her. She was released, and her life proceeded as normal.
That is, until the disappearance of her daughter. Leland Palmer committed suicide a year after his daughter vanished, and Sarah dipped into alcohol and prescription pill addiction. The fate of the Palmer family was similar whether their daughter died or disappeared, and in both timelines, she ripped that dude’s neck out.
Now it’s clear why: The winged creature that crawled into Sarah’s mouth planted something evil inside of her. That evil came out during “The Return,” and remains in Sarah to this day.
Dr. Jacoby Helped Count “Hanging Chads” and Predicted the Iraq War
Dr. Lawrence Jacoby gets one of the lengthier chapters in the novel and his many colorful adventures earn him the (relatively) high page count. Among them, Dr. Jacoby toured with The Grateful Dead as their groupie and personal pharmacist; he bought into the Y2K hoax thanks to his affiliation with Dr. Jost Poepjes, which translates to — I shit you not — Dr. Little Poops; and he was in New York City on 9/11.
This latter point led him to a staunch belief in karma. Dr. Jacoby believed the terrorist attack was “the first toll of the bell striking midnight on the American experiment.” He then predicted the American government would “overreact, lash out at the wrong targets, and kick off an even more destructive cycle of cause and effect that would only make the emerging global crises worse.” After the unsuccessful search for weapons of mass destruction, Dr. Jacoby took his accurate prediction as a sign to move back to Twin Peaks.
Oh, and he moved to Florida in 2000 and helped with the presidential recount. During his time not spent counting the infamous hanging chads, Dr. Jacoby counseled distraught Ralph Nader voters.
Annie Blackburn Is Alive and Trapped in a Dougie-Like Stupor
The last we saw of Annie Blackburn, she had just been brought back from the Black Lodge by the Double (“Evil Cooper”). Later in the Season 2 finale, we learned she was at the hospital and everyone expected her to be all right, but that prognosis turned out to be slightly misleading.
To this day, Annie is in a catatonic state. She can’t hear or see anything going on around her, nor does she speak, but every year at exactly 8:38 a.m. on the anniversary of her kidnapping, she will say two words: “I’m fine.”
Clearly, she’s not. In addition to her inexplicable mental state, Annie also attempted to kill herself exactly one year after she was found in the woods. Norma, who had moved her back home, found Annie “slumped in bed, in a pool of her own blood; she’d slit her wrists again with the shards of shattered glass.” The incident marked the second time Annie had tried to commit suicide, following an incident when she was in high school.
Tammy notes in the book that she visited Annie in the hospital in 2017 and described her as “quite beautiful […] as if she’s hardly aged a day.” Otherwise, her state is unchanged: still catatonic, but reciting the same two words at the same time every year.
Such a state is reminiscent of another being who came back from a troubling stay at the Black Lodge: Agent Cooper. When he found his way back to the real world in “The Return,” everyone thought he was Dougie Jones and took his lack of communication and inability to do simple tasks as either a joke or an insightful reaction to current events. He couldn’t explain what was wrong, but instead had to find a cure on his own. It turned out to be stabbing a fork in a light socket, shocking him back to his old self, but that took a very, very long time.
Is Annie stuck in a similar state? Could a jolt of electricity be just the thing she needs to snap back to reality? Or is her damage more permanent? The answers could await in Season 4 — or another book, should Mark Frost need an additional dossier.
For six more discoveries, including a new villain for Season 4, continue reading.