David Lynch refuses to explain Twin Peaks: The Return


David Lynch steadfastly resists any attempts to analyze or interpret his work and refuses to explain himself, particularly Twin Peaks.

While David Lynch’s film work is well known and distinctive, he is perhaps best known recently as the creator of the cult classic television series Twin Peaks. This soapy, abstract crime drama ran for two seasons on ABC before collapsing under its own absurdity. Twenty-five years later, Lynch released the third season under the title Twin Peaks: The Return.

Lynch considers this the real series, the Twin Peaks he always wanted to make, and the filmmaker made no compromises in making it. The new series received nine Emmy nominations, including limited-series writing, directing, and sound design for David Lynch. The Return is notoriously challenging, often achingly mundane and disturbingly abstract, but Lynch offers no hints or explanations.

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This is perhaps a state of affairs that should be expected when it comes to engaging Lynch on the topic of his film and television work. When asked if certain themes in Twin Peaks: The Return were meant as a commentary on certain social issues or current events, Lynch shoots down any such interpretations, saying the content simply flowed from ideas. “I always say ideas dictate everything,” says Lynch. “Ideas came, and this is what the ideas presented. Just focusing on Twin Peaks, these things came out for us, and there they were.” Simple as that.

When Deadline talked with Lynch, almost any suggestion of motivation put to the director was immediately denied. Lynch may refuse to interpret his own work, but welcomes and encourages viewers to make their own associations. “But, what I love is people’s freedom to interpret it as they wish,” he explains. Whether there are hidden meanings in his work or not, perhaps he just doesn’t want to influence us by stating what they are. “It’s all in the mind’s eye—different viewers get so many different things.”

He brings this up particularly in reference to the eighth episode of Twin Peaks: The Return, “Gotta Light”, an episode that is overwhelmingly abstract and short on exposition. But the viewer response to the episode, while divisive, was also lively.

Next. David Lynch comments on Twin Peaks season 4 possibilities. dark

Some didn’t like it because they didn’t understand it, some loved it without having to understand it, and others – on one side or the other – were driven to come to understand it. When asked if he was surprised that people seemed to “get” the episode, Lynch notes that “it has been known in the history of television that people underestimate the intelligence of the audience.”

Lynch doesn’t worry about the intelligence of his audience, which is a refreshing feeling in a market of dumbed-down, spelled-out, tight-plotted, clear-cut procedural dramas, or whatever. He just “follows the ideas” and lets the audience worry about itself.

Source: Deadline