How The Return reflects on Season 2
I always thought Mark Frost wrote the Secret History of Twin Peaks to rehabilitate season 2 and its loads of uninteresting characters (Dwayne and Lana Milford to name a few) and somehow managed to do that, although I would still avoid these plots.
Now, after watching the first 6 episodes of The Return and the story of Dougie, Season 2 of Twin Peaks looks like pure Twin Peaks, to the point that I expect Cooper to spit and repeat "New Shoes" at any moment.
I love The Return, but let's face it, the story of evil Little Nicky would perfectly fit here.
It did bother me at first but now I find that it really gives coherence to season 1, 2, 3, FWWM and its missing pieces. It all seems to fit together somehow, which really wasn't the case until now.
I have, indeed, misunderstood your post, but I wasn't aggressive I think. Anyway, my apologies.
I don't think Little Nicky and all the nonsense released on season 2 when Frost and Lynch walked away from the show would fit in any way in this season.
However, I do feel that this season fits perfectly with S1, S2 and FWWM. As I said in other post before: We have the mistery of S1, the lore of S2 and the darkness of FWWM. I love this season.
FIRE TWERK WITH ME
I don't think Little Nicky or the other oddities of season 2 fit into the Return at all. Wally Brando was essentially a second season character and he stuck out like a sore thumb.
Dougie is out there...but he has purpose. Little Nicky, Tojamura, Dwayne and Lana, Evelyn, Billy Zane, Thomas Eckhart etc...were just filler.
I have a different angle on this: I never found the...oddest parts of S2 to be "out of place" as much as being badly-to-terribly executed.
To me, The Return is having a different effect on the original show (both seasons, actually): on one side, the new narrative is so powerful and mind-blowing that it almost instantly made me feel like the feel like the first 30 episodes are just the appetizer, the run up to what's happening right now; on the other hand, it's highlighting just how much the old series was heavily influenced by the suits at ABC and how much it was a product of its time (the heavy handed exposition, the watered down way the most... difficult themes were played and so on and so forth).
I also wrote in some other topics how The Return is having a unifying effect, not just on TP/FWWM but on most of Lynch's opera - which is really great.
I have the fury of my own momentum
I feel the same way. The series, while excellent, is the least of the three entries. It's more of an introduction to this wonderful town and it's mysteries. I love the show...but it got bogged down by focusing on too much outside of the main narrative that made people interested in the first place.
Twin Peaks really came into its own with FWWM...where they could really explore the dark nature of the town and delve deeper into the mysterious evil that we wanted to see in the show...but got silly sub plots of forgettable side characters instead.
The 90s show was the towns story. FWWM was Laura's story. The Return is Dale and the black lodges story. It's a miracle this show is back after a quarter century and I'm glad we can finally get to the heart of what made this series so engaging without "filler" getting in the way.
I don't know if you literally meant that with your language, but "little Nicky" was not evil, that a was a goofy assumption by Andy & Dick. That was filler, something that could be inserted into any show that isn't TP.
James outside TP was another kind of filler, they had to send Donna in to remind people what show they were watching.
The scene of James singing ( with the hidden drummer & bass player ) added nothing to the story. The scene immediately following ( Maddie's first time seeing Bob ) could have used any writing excuse to put the three characters together.
"The woods are wondrous here, but strange..." - Judge Sternwood perfectly exemplifies what the real story of Twin Peaks was underneath the watered down, hit the audience over the head with explanation show that ABC demanded. Without Bob & the Black Lodge, Mike & the Arm, etc. it would have been just another show and would not have a huge devoted following with new generations discovering it all the time & falling in love with it.
Fire Walk With Me
I was 11 when I first time watched TP. I rewatched it 12 years later and and never had nothing against little Nick, James's romance, wacky Ben, Nadine in high school and all this weird stuff. As a matter of fact all this made TP as I love it.
I find "Jusy You and I" 100% Lynch. Song was written by David and Angelo and it was so surreal to watch James playing guitar, singing high pitch voice and girls doing choirs. And than BOB apears and all this teenage idyll colapses...
In any case, I think this return feels like lots of fillers put together, and yet sometimes, you feel like you're watching Twin Peaks (instead of Mulholland Drive or INLAND EMPIRE, as I often do), but then, at some point, it'll probably all fit together and make perfect sense, or not.
My point is, Dougie's goofyness rehabilitates (for me) season 2's many goofy moments (which I somehow always liked anywhow), more coherence in the end.
And yes, without a doubt, FWWM is the real thing.
There's a huge difference, though, between what's going on in The Return and the oddities in S2 - namely, themes and leitmotifs (both things that, for the most part, are sorely missing in season 2).
No matter how weird, contrived and incomprehensible he goes, Lynch always has themes and leitmotifs driving the narrative. Even with INLAND EMPIRE-level of delirious complexity, you always know (or, at the very least, feel) that he's saying something that's telling a story - you "only" have to work out what is he saying and what story is he telling and - while this process leaves a LOT of room for interpretation - the presence of strong thematic aspects and different motifs make the whole thing more than just a "oh, and you bring your own meaning to it" kind of experience.
Basically, Lynch paves the way and drives the 'car' (the narrative) and how to 'read the landscape' is largely up to you.
Now, nothing of this was going on with season 2 subplots such as little Nicky, James' romance etc. The ideas themselves weren't bad, but they were mostly unfocused, half-baked or unresolved: there wasn't anything driving the narrative there, it was all "let's just throw on this wall and see what sticks".
James' storyline is probably the best example of this: it had all the elements to be a perfectly serviceable noir - a guillable main character, a femme fatale, intrigue, betrayal. Eventually, though, it didn't went anywhere, they slapped a rushed conclusion on it and cut it short.
In this (and many, many others) respect, The Return is clearly more connected to FWWM - stylistically and thematically, it's a direct continuation of that movie (with Lost Highway, Mulholland Drive and INLAND EMPIRE in between).
I have the fury of my own momentum