Seriable’s Mark Jones reviews Twin Peaks Episode 6 — “Realization Time”
The penultimate episode of Twin Peaks‘ first season gets off to a flying start as the cliff hanger of Cooper finding Audrey in his bed is swiftly resolved. Cooper handles the situation impeccably resulting in him and Audrey agreeing to remain friends.
While he still keeps his emotions at bay he does indicate that he likes Audrey, but is clearly very much driven by his brain and not areas further south when dealing with matters of the heart. It seems too early in the series for Cooper to have any romantic entanglements, but the fact that Audrey’s feelings for him are clearly undimmed does leave the door open (though one which will eventually be shut) for the possibility of something happening between the two of the them in the future.
Spurned on by Cooper’s rejection, Audrey completes her mission of infiltrating One Eyed Jacks and in a memorable scene persuades Blackie to give her a job there. After an unsuccessful interview where it looks like the landlady of the casino is about to throw her out, Audrey turns things around by plucking a cherry stalk out of a nearby glass and tying it into a perfect knot with her tongue. Thanks to the timeless quality of Twin Peaks and Sherilyn Fenn‘s natural beauty and sensual body language this scene still has the power to make a man go weak at the knees and surely ranks among the series’ sexiest moments.
Audrey’s arrival at Jacks coincides with an undercover mission being undertaken by the Bookhouse Boys. They’re there to investigate Jacques Renault unaware that she is also conducting her own investigation into Laura’s murder. One amusing detail of their stakeout are Cooper and Big Ed’s codenames ‘Barney and Fred’ (another seemingly pointless but funny coupling of names like Ben and Jerry) but apart from that its fun to see Cooper exercise his gambling skills and hear Ed’s flirting with Blackie.
There are plenty of fun Cooper moments to balance out the darker scenes in this instalment including one when he meets Harry in the Double R and imparts some more wisdom that gives us an insight into his philosophy on life:
“Harry I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it, don’t wait for it, just let it happen. It could be a new shirt at the men’s store, a cat nap in your office chair or two cups of good, hot, black coffee”
“A present, like Christmas” responds Harry and there’s a twinkle in his eye as the bromance between the two continues to grow.
It’s on this trip to the Diner that Harry meets Hank Jennings in town for the first time. There’s clearly some friction between the two and as was established in a previous episode Hank used to be one of the Bookhouse Boys. Any trust between the two has clearly gone and the Sheriff gives the impression that he doesn’t intend to make Hank’s life easy. Of course, Harry doesn’t know that Hank’s been scheming with Josie and that the two of them are working with Benjamin Horne to eliminate Katherine.
While the scenes with Cooper are fun the really interesting developments come from Leo Johnson, and Madeline Palmer who listens to the tape of Laura’s she found with Donna and James. After another cliffhanger that was resolved with little explanation, Leo Johnson appears to be alive and kicking (albeit with a nasty looking wound on his arm) and out for revenge. He attempts to assassinate Bobby Briggs but is interrupted by a transmission from the Sheriff’s office which he picks up on his van’s radio. Swiftly abandoning shooting Bobby he heads to office where the Mynah bird found in Jacques Renault’s is being kept. Although he manages to kill it, he doesn’t stop it before it repeats what it heard on the night of Laura’s death, which is recorded by Cooper’s faithful (voice activated) Dictaphone.
Laura, Donna and Bobby on the other hand find Laura’s collection of tapes she recorded for Dr. Jacoby, revealing that she knew how the Dr really felt about her. With Jacoby’s dirty old man status confirmed, the trio discover the tape Laura made on the night of her death is missing. Realising where it must be, they come up with a plan to lure Jacoby away from his office so they can snoop around. The plan involves getting Maddy to imitate Laura and call up the Dr, convincing him that it is really her by getting the other two to leave a video tape of her on his doorstep.
Their plan is successful but Donna sees the look in James’ eye when he sees Maddy in the blonde wig for the first time. Their plan of luring Jacoby out of his office is successful and there’s one great moment where the glow off the TV screen causes the shadow of Jacoby’s glasses to make him look like an owl, which have already been alluded to as a negative presence in Episode 5.
Throughout the episode it seems like everyone is out to get each other as in addition to Leo trying to shoot Bobby, Bobby plants cocaine in the gas tank of James’ bike. As the season builds to its climax there’s plenty of drama being built around all the characters and even Lucy adds some with her mysterious phone call from a doctor at the beginning of the episode.
Yet again, the acting is solid all round and there are some really great small moments, like Leland creepily watching Maddy leave the house, that add to the overall feeling of things getting darker. There’s also a sense of building tension as the plan to burn the mill approaches fruition, leading to an exciting season finale.
Rating: 9/10 Seriable stars.