Much like a “damn good coffee” from the Double R Diner, anticipation is brewing ahead of David Lynch’s Twin Peaks revival, starting this week on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV. Nick Mitchell gives a rundown of who’s back
The ground-breaking TV show which David Lynch created with Mark Frost in 1990 returns to our screens this week and the good news is that most of the familiar faces are back too.
Lynch revealed a mammoth 217-long cast list last year, with Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick and Sheryl Lee among the names to reprise their roles. Both Catherine E. Coulson (The Log Lady) and Miguel Ferrer (Albert Rosenfeld) reportedly filmed scenes for the new series before their recent deaths.
Set 25 years on from when we left them, Twin Peaks will delve back into the mysteries of the small town and its various parallel dimensions. If the teaser trailer is anything to go by, it promises to be darker than ever.
Here’s a recap of where we left the main characters. *spoilers for seasons one and two follow*
Agent Dale Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan)
Charismatic and unshakably chipper, FBI agent Dale “Coop” Cooper was drafted in to help the local Sheriff investigate Laura Palmer’s murder. He found himself dragged into an increasingly bizarre, increasingly otherworldly mystery, eventually leading him to the evil Black Lodge, where he meets his crazed doppelganger.
Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee)
The centre of the show’s mystery, Laura Palmer was the Twin Peaks homecoming queen whose body is found in the pilot episode. A classic Lynchian creation, it turns out she was a teenage prostitute, a drug addict and had been involved with many of the male characters before her death. Although Lynch had chosen an unknown actress in Sheryl Lee to play such an insignificant part, it turned out she could act, so he brought her “back to life” in flashbacks and visions – and cast Lee as Laura’s dark-haired cousin Maddy Ferguson.
Shelly Johnson (Mädchen Amick)
Even by Twin Peaks standards, Shelly Johnson had an eventful storyline. Married to abusive Leo, caring for vegetative Leo, stabbing reawakened Leo, the open affair with Bobby Briggs, and finally the admiring glances of two very different older characters: Windom Earle and Gordon Cole.
Audrey Horne (Sherilyn Fenn)
It didn’t take listless Audrey Horne long to fall for Agent Cooper when he arrived in Twin Peaks. Although he refused her advances, she did help him out by becoming an undercover hostess at the One-Eyed Jack’s brothel. In season two she found a calling as an environmental activist, and her fate was left uncertain when a bomb explodes. Did she survive?
Deputy Andy Brennan (Harry Goaz)
Deputy Andy Brennan was the likeable if intellectually challenged local cop who had a habit of stumbling upon a clue. In season two he played an important role in locating the Black Lodge, and Lucy had finally chosen him to be the father of her baby.
Leland Palmer (Ray Wise)
Possessed by the evil spirit “BOB”, Leland Palmer was a Jekyll and Hyde presence throughout Twin Peaks. The father of Laura, who it emerges he raped and killed while controlled by the malevolent spirit, he’s eventually arrested by Cooper. In custody he kills himself in an attempt to banish BOB for good. So it’s unclear whether Leland, another deceased character, will appear in flashback, or some other form.
Sarah Palmer (Grace Zabriskie)
Leland’s long-suffering wife, Sarah had a paranormal knack that meant she saw visions of BOB and of various other bad omens. Having suffered a nervous breakdown in season two she was basically used as a human messaging service by Windom Earle in the final episode.
Big Ed Hurley (Everett McGill)
Big Ed Hurley, uncle to James, was the gruff, John Wayne-esque presence in the show. He was stuck in an unhappy, guilt-fuelled marriage to Nadine, and he jumped at any chance of leaving her for Norma.
Nadine Hurley (Wendy Robie)
Even by Lynchian standards, eye-patch-wearing, super-strong Nadine Hurley is a strange creation. After losing her attempt to patent the world’s first silent drape-runners fails, she tries to kill herself by taking an overdose of pills. But after waking from a coma she believes she’s a teenager, and even begins dating a high school student.
Norma Jennings (Peggy Lipton)
The doyenne of the Double R Diner, Norma’s will-she-won’t-she love affair with Big Ed was one of the more soap-style storylines of Twin Peaks. In the end they didn’t.
Gordon Cole (David Lynch)
FBI Regional Bureau Chief Gordon Cole, played by Lynch himself, was one of several comedic characters who helped lighten the tone of Twin Peaks.
Dr Lawrence Jacoby (Russ Tamblyn)
The Hawaii-obsessed Dr Jacoby was briefly implicated in the Laura Palmer case when it emerged she’d been recording audiotapes for him, and they had a close relationship. By the end of season two he had become a marginal character, but Tamblyn is cast in the new series.
The Log Lady (Catherine E. Coulson)
The Log Lady, real name Margaret Lanterman, became an icon of Twin Peaks. Lynch and Frost gave her character meaning, thanks to the opening monologues, and her stern, mystical advice which often helps the main characters take a new direction. Catherine E. Coulson passed away in 2015 but she is credited in the new series.
Denise/Dennis Bryson (David Duchovny)
And finally… a pre-X-Files David Duchovny, who found wearing women’s clothes during an undercover operation to be “relaxing” and kept doing it. It’s unclear how big a role Duchovny will have in the comeback.
Twin Peaks returns on Sky Atlantic and NOW TV on Monday at 2am or Tuesday at 9pm