Twin Peaks Primer: Who’s Dead, Who’s Alive, And Who Just Wants Pie
David Lynch is about to make all our dark dreams come true when he brings Twin Peaks back this Sunday, May 21, on CraveTV and TMN. But it’s been over a quarter of a century since the original series wrapped up so you’d be forgiven if your recollection of the way things left off in the tiny Pacific Northwest town is a bit misty.
Dedicated fans with some unused sick days on their hands could probably cram in the first two seasons (plus Fire Walk With Me) before the bit premiere, but if you have a job and/or other life obligations, check out our quick Peaks character primer to refresh your memory instead:
After solving Laura Palmer’s murder, Kyle MacLachlan’s character (with the help of countless cups of “damn fine coffee” and two-thumbs-up-worthy slices of cherry pie) became entrapped in the otherworldly nightmare realm of the Black Lodge. There, he found himself face to face with both Palmer and his own evil twin—and that’s where we last saw him. It’s rumoured that we’ll find out what happened to him in the new season—MacLachlan is credited in all 18 episodes.
Yes, it’s highly likely that former Homecoming Queen Laura Palmer is still dead. But did her ghost really get to go to the White Lodge? And what about her murdered cousin, Maddy Ferguson? Both characters were played by Sheryl Lee, who’s back for the 2017 reboot.
Shelly Johnson and Bobby Briggs
Mädchen Amick played Double R Diner waitress Shelly, who barely escaped being burned to death after her abusive husband Leo (Eric DaRe) found out about her affair with Laura Palmer’s boyfriend, Bobby (Dana Ashbrook). At the end of the original series, an injured (and possibly still dangerous) Leo had taken off into the woods, Shelly returned to work at the diner, and Bobby proposed—and got shut down. Amick and Ashbrook will appear in the new series.
Teenage trouble-maker Audrey (Sherilyn Fenn) turns out to be one of the key players in solving Laura’s murder when she risks her life taking a job at One-Eyed Jacks. In Season 2, she gets Agent Cooper exonerated after he’s charged over the brothel raid, enters the Miss Twin Peaks pageant, and becomes an environmental activist, which leads to her being involved in a deadly explosion. It was never made clear whether or not Audrey survived—until now, with her recasting in the 2017 season. Lara Flynn Boyle played Audrey’s suspected half sister, Donna Hayward, but Boyle isn’t returning to the show.
Audrey’s ruthless businessman father (Richard Beymer) was one of the prime suspects in Laura Palmer’s murder, but in reality, he’s just a depressed, middle-aged guy who has an affair with Laura right before she dies. At the end of Season 2, he goes on a mission to make amends for his bad behaviour by getting involved in environmental activism (mostly out of revenge, though) and apologizing to the people he’s wronged—including Donna Hayward, his illegitimate daughter. For this, he gets socked in the jaw by Doc Hayward and cracks his head open, leaving yet another character’s fate open to interpretation—but Beymer is credited for one episode in the upcoming season.
Leland and Sarah Palmer
Learn to sleep with the lights on because Ray Wise is bringing the demon-possessed killer Leland/Bob back to Twin Peaks. The last time we saw Leland, Bob was forcing him to bash his head in on a metal door while under arrest by Agent Cooper and Sheriff Truman. He died, but Cooper sees him again (or some version of him) in the Black Lodge. As for Leland’s wife, Sarah, Grace Zabriskie is back in her role for the new series. In the finale, an unstable Sarah used her supernatural powers to channel Windom Earle (Kenneth Welsh), telling Garland Briggs (Don S. Davis) that Earle was in the Black Lodge with his former partner, Agent Cooper.
Sheriff Harry S. Truman
Michael Ontkean’s character, the Dr. Watson to Agent Cooper’s Sherlock Holmes, goes on a drinking binge after his girlfriend Josie Packard dies but he manages to pull himself out of it and return to his role as Cooper’s right hand man. Ontkean won’t be returning to the show, but Robert Forster will play a character called Sheriff Frank Truman.
Additional returning Twin Peaks characters include James Hurley (James Marshall) who left town with a promise to girlfriend Donna Hayward to come back for her, Ed Hurley (Everett McGill) who was about to marry his high school sweetheart Norma (Peggy Lipton) when his current wife suddenly recovers from her strange mental illness (that’s Wendy Robie as Nadine Hurley). DEA Agent Denise Bryson (David Duchovny), Lucy Moran (Kimmy Robertson), and Dr. Lawrence Jacoby (Russ Tamblyn).
The One-Armed Man
And the Log Lady will all be back, too.
Same goes for Lynch’s own character, former FBI man, Gordon Cole.