Oof, that’s a miserable title. Of course, in 1990 most people would never have been aware of an episode’s title. That’s a DVD/DVR/IMDb thing. Still. It’s like those beer ads that say “Stay thirsty, my friends.” What a horrible thing to tell someone! That’s not a salutation; it’s a curse. “Never, ever, feel satisfaction or relief.” You’re not my friend.
We open on Audrey clearly thinking evil thoughts. We can tell because she’s awake. Oh, she’s going to ambush Agent Cooper once he’s done talking to his imaginary friend. She carefully positions herself in front of the fireplace, so he can tell she’s coming from hell. Agent Cooper compliments her perfume, which is never creepy for a relative stranger to tell a teenage girl. He wastes no time accusing her of slipping him the note tipping him off to the brothel, although he makes her spell it out for him. Again, not creepy. He finds out that both Laura and Ronette worked at Audrey’s dad’s store at the perfume counter (I bet Laura didn’t even share the time-turner with Ronette, that do-gooding bitch) and then reveals that he read those silly “analyze your handwriting” books that are marketed to teenage girls (this slant means you’re romantic, but the way you dot your i’s means you’ll take all you can get in the eventual divorce) before he politely tells Audrey to scram when the Sheriff and Lucy are arriving.
The Sheriff, as you may recall, got woken up in the middle of the night by Agent Cooper saying he knew who the killer was but refusing to say it over the phone. The NSA isn’t going to be a thing for a while, Agent Cooper. Now that it’s daylight, the Sheriff again asks Agent Cooper to tell him who killed Laura Palmer. Agent Cooper first has to analyze his dream. On the one hand, who likes listening to someone else analyze their dreams? On the other, maybe we can find out what exactly we were watching in episode three. So, to wit: It WAS a different Mike and Bob, although saying that’s a coincidence and then immediately explaining how real-life situations become dreams seems a bit of a contradiction, no? Laura Palmer was supposed to look older, because everyone was 20 years older, so I was right on that even if it took me a bit. Of course, he doesn’t remember who the killer was. This is why you keep a dream journal, Agent Cooper! They get called to the morgue and Agent Cooper knows without being told it’s because of Agent Patronizing. I would say this is like how everyone knew without being told that Laura was dead, but Agent Cooper has a few more hints to be going on.
And, indeed, Agent Patronizing is trying to cut the body into little tiny pieces instead of letting it get buried in the funeral like every other person on the planet wants. He actually refers to it as “cutting and pasting,” and then runs through his thesaurus insulting the intelligence of everyone else in the room until the Sheriff punches him. Agent Cooper tells off Agent Patronizing, and then gets left alone with the body that everyone was fighting for possession of a few seconds ago. I guess they only want what they can’t have.
Laura’s dad is watching a ridiculous soap (twin daughters are named Jade and Emerald, but I’m sure their parents love them equally) when Laura’s cousin Maddie stops by with her condolences. We can tell she’s supposed to be ugly because she has glasses. She will not be in the episode again.
Norma (Garage Ed’s girlfriend) is listening to her husband’s lawyer tell her what an exemplary prisoner he’s been, so he’s sure to be let out on parole. She seems thrilled.
Agent Cooper is shocked to see ducks in nature. He apparently thought they were manufactured in a city somewhere. He starts questioning Dumb Leo, beginning with “Is that short for Leonard?” and we can tell Dumb Leo passed his high school English classes when he says “is that a question?” (Remember, this was before up-talking was a thing. Which reminds me- did you catch the RuPaul finale? I saw so many people online rooting for Adore, which, she was fine, but I never thought of her as a drag superstar. And then I finally realized what she did that really drove me crazy, and it was the up-talking. Which largely means I was rebelling against her relative youth. If I had a lawn, I’d be yelling for everyone to get off of it.) Dumb Leo then refuses to answer any more questions, which is actually smart, but he does it in a very rude way, so he can keep his name.
Bobby looks about to steal a crucifix while smoking when his dad interrupts to talk to him about how the funeral is supposed to give him closure. Bobby is incapable of being anything but sarcastic because he refuses to confront or acknowledge emotion. Apparently he was going to take the crucifix from the dining room? Oh yeah, that’s a sign of emotional stability.
Agent Patronizing gives his results. Laura had cocaine in her purse and her blood (still say it was a time-turner) and her arms were tied in two places, but no idea how he gets the idea of the pose she was in. (Agent Cooper immediately ties this to his dream, because why not?) He also took a small piece of plastic with a J on it from her stomach, deepening the J mystery. After the Sheriff goes for the funeral, Agent Patronizing asks Agent Cooper to sign a report tattling on the Sheriff for hitting him, but Agent Cooper tells him that life only matters in small towns, so you shouldn’t go around making people there obey laws. Or something. Then Agent Cooper tells his imaginary friend he’s thinking of moving to Twin Peaks. He figures real estate values are probably shit, so he can live like a king.
Garage Ed tells his wife he loves her because she’s being nice to him. She reminisces about how Garage Ed and Norma were high-school sweethearts, and even though every movie and TV show says that means they’ll be together forever, she knew Taylor Swift had it right and he’d eventually be married to her. Emo-Boy comes in and announces he’s not going to the funeral because he might not be the saddest person in the room there and that’s an unacceptable situation.
Audrey sneaks through the walls in her house like a rat and spies on the psychiatrist convincing her brother not to wear a feathered headdress to a funeral while her parents bicker about it. I think this is supposed to be how we recognize the brother when we see him at the funeral, because otherwise he looks like all the other hot guys.
The funeral is pretty standard. Emo-Boy attends after all, but fashionably late and keeping a distance so he doesn’t have to share his feelings with anyone, even though really everyone is in their own heads. Johnny (Audrey’s brother) gives the loudest “amen,” until Bobby decides he has not been the center of attention for entirely too long now and screams that they all knew Laura was in trouble. Then he and Emo-Boy brawl so it’s almost missed when Laura’s father throws himself onto the casket, causing the casket lift to malfunction and just start going up and down while Laura’s mom yells “don’t ruin this too!” There’s sad music playing but it’s hysterical.
Which the show knows, because then Norma is re-enacting the whole thing for the amusement of some diners. Agent Cooper joins the Sheriff, the Deputy and Garage Ed for pie, and the fact that Agent Cooper immediately knows Garage Ed is having an affair with Norma means Garage Ed loses a bet. The Sheriff admits he sometimes asks citizens, like Garage Ed, to help stop drug deals and also to fight the ancient evil in the woods. Sure! It’s like in American Gods, you can have your perfect little town but once in a while a kid has to die. The Lottery, without informed consent. But with secret handshakes and boathouses.
They take Agent Cooper to their lair (they are The Bookhouse Boys) where Emo-Boy and another guy are holding a French dude hostage because he was bringing in drugs. (Wait- so Emo-Boy wasn’t referring to Bobby and Mike when he mentioned The Bookhouse Boys before? I guess not.) Agent Cooper immediately jumps into the “acting menacing and ask questions that aren’t admissible in court” game. He just wants so badly to belong.
The French dude’s brother, the bartender who is decidedly not French, calls Dumb Leo all in a panic because there’s a light on which means his brother was busted and Dumb Leo needs to shuttle the bartender over the border. The Canadian border, I think, which is just slightly more effective than escaping to Puerto Rico. Dumb Leo immediately takes off, leaving Shelly time to hide a gun in a piece of furniture. She takes a plank of wood off the side of what looks like a chest of drawers and then hides it in a piece of cloth. So, if one were to just slide the drawer out, it would be right there, right?
The Sheriff has a rendezvous with Jocelyn, and even though he’s clearly putting the moves on her, she tells him everything she knows about how her sister-in-law killed her husband and wants to kill her, but they do it within earshot of a house-wide intercom system which of course Catherine is listening to. Pete almost interrupts Catherine hiding her second ledger to ask if she’s seen his tackle box. She tells him if he wants to “see” in her “safe” he should just ask, and he says “maybe I’ll check the truck” in a very threatening way. These people have weird euphemisms.
Agent Cooper watches a cloaked figure go to visit Laura’s grave. Is it a man? A woman? The mysterious evil force? Oh, it’s the psychiatrist. He tells Agent Cooper that Laura was the patient who made him love psychiatry again. IS THERE ANYTHING SHE COULDN’T DO?
Jocelyn tries to go back to the part about how her life is in danger, but the Sheriff is all “let’s get bizzay!” and blows off her concerns. Then they make out for an inordinate amount of time, but at least this is before foley guys went nuts over kissing sound effects.
Agent Cooper talks with the Deputy about the idea of people having multiple souls while Laura’s dad stands in the middle of a dance hall creeping everyone out. Or they’re in the same place? It’s weird. They’re breaking the line so you can’t tell until Agent Cooper offers to take Laura’s dad home. I think it’s the hotel, whose cafe doubles as a bar at night and plays swing music so all the locals go there. Remember how they zoomed in on that video of the girl’s eye to see the reflection of the motorcycle? Those kinds of effects aren’t cheap. They need to save on sets when they can.