The last seven days brought with them a lurching – and appropriately Lynchian – sense of dread. Part 9 marked the first occasion on which Twin Peaks: The Return stuttered in places, almost self-consciously evaluating its labyrinthine narrative. The dense plot was unpacked with much exposition, stupefying the viewer more than it left us reeling in a state of unknowing wonderment.
It still posed questions, even while doling out answers – but the most pertinent, disturbingly, concerned the structure of the plot. Is it too intricate to simply show, and not tell?
In a superior Part 10, there was but one clunky moment of exposition in an hour of cinema that, elsewhere, was a return to a classic Lynchian theme. Duncan Todd summoned Anthony Sinclair to his desk – but instructed him to remain standing, thematically mirroring Richard Horne by exercising his last ugly morsel of agency – he asked him if he “recalls his business rivals and bitter enemies the Mitchum brothers.” It was a blunt turn of phrase intended not for Sinclair but for the viewer.
Reassuringly, it was the only concession made to our comfort in what otherwise was 52 minutes of unrelenting ugliness.