“Twin Peaks” hasn’t exactly abounded in moments of tenderness these last few months, but the end of “Part 2” remains a highlight: “James is cool,” Shelly says of her old classmate James Hurley. “James was always cool.” Whether or not that’s actually true might not rank among the revival’s most hotly debated questions, but it’s one that actor James Marshall was kind enough to address in a recent Vulture interview: “I don’t think of myself that way or the character that way,” he admits.
“Shelly isn’t saying James has become ‘Fonzie cool.’ What she’s saying, I think, is that he’s cool because he’s always had a straight line,” Marshall clarifies. “Everyone has gone a little kooky, but James has always been a good guy and a good person who wants to do the right thing. It’s not like he’s a Pollyanna, but he’ll do the best he can. He’s a straight-up person and he wears his heart on his sleeve. I think a lot of people read it that way, too.”
When “Twin Peaks” first began way back when, James was a heartbroken biker whose love for Laura Palmer quickly turned into a love for her best friend, Donna Hayward. Among the character’s best, most well-known moments is his performance of the song “Just You,” which he reprised in a recent episode of “Twin Peaks.” Watch that below, and read Marshall’s full interview here.