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ORIGINAL SERIES Original Season 3 Plans (1991)

OneMoreChapter

Special Agent
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Apr 12, 2022
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Original Season 3 Plans (link to original thread on Dugpa)


Ok so this is a thread to discuss the Original Season 3 Plans - not the original plans/script/ideas for The Return itself (though that could also be discussed somewhat as there might be some overlapping ideas that were carried over) but the original season that might have aired in 1991 had ABC not cancelled the show.

So I saw the below post on reddit and I'd heard of most of this before, thought the last entry I had not. (I might credit the reddit poster later, usually I credit them whenever I quoted on dugpa but in case this info is incorrect they might not want their username posted here.)

"Their plans were apparently quite different from what we eventually saw in The Return: Coop was going to become the local pharmacist (which...I guess would imply that his time in the Black Lodge was relatively short-lived?); a third Laura double was going to show up, this time with red hair (which I suppose we did eventually get, with Carrie Page); "Judy" was, if memory serves, going to be a relative of Josie's, very definitely not whatever the hell she turned out to be in The Return; BOB and Co. were going to be revealed as hailing from a planet made of creamed corn; and the cast and crew of Invitation to Love were going to descend upon the town to film a season there, which is so meta it makes my head hurt."

So I remember hearing most of this as I said, especially the pharmacist angle for Cooper and the creamed corn planet (which may also have been an idea for FWWM?), plus I remember hearing about a scene where Harry drives backwards in a corn field, presumably to disrupt time and end up in the black lodge.

Two things to note about the above quote:

  • I believe plans for Judy, a sister or relation of Josie's, were only for FIre Walk With Me - the first draft of the sceenplay. I don't think these were ever a plan for a Season 3, unless they were carried over to FWWM from that but ultimately discarded. As the poster points out, we did end up getting a version of this character but radically different and a major antagonist again (they may have been intended to be an antagonist as a relative of Josie's but probably not to the same extent unless also planned to be an entity back then too). We also got a version of the "Sheryl Lee with red hair" idea.

  • The thing that most surprised me in the above quote is the meta idea of the cast of "Invitation to Love" coming to the town of Twin Peaks to film an episode. I can't decide if I love or hate this idea. It's silly but might might have been fun. However, this is the part I've never heard and is probably wrong hence why I haven't credited the poster. It sounds something like a fan made up along the way (not this poster, but maybe it was a fan fiction idea). Unless I'm mistaken. Is their any truth to it? Perhaps Mark Frost or one of the writers would know.
 

Olson

Sparkwood & 21
Apr 13, 2022
3
3
The Invitation to Love bit is a new one on me.

The planet of creamed corn and Judy as Josie's sister ideas were both in the original plans for Fire Walk with Me, but the rest were all definitely ideas for the original season 3.

As far as I'm aware, all of it comes from Bob Engels, whose memory can be pretty unreliable. He later backtracked on the planet idea and instead said it was more of "another place". Mr Reindeer also had an excellent post back on Dugpa about the Judy/Josie idea.

And I can't find a source for it now, but I seem to remember Engels or Harley Peyton mentioning that Cooper's doppelgänger arc was going to be resolved by the end of the first episode and there would be a 10-year time skip (which would feature the Cooper/pharmacist bit). The former seemed like a particularly bizarre choice.
 

N. Needleman

RR Diner
Apr 12, 2022
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I remember some loose talk from Peyton/Engels (I think) about how badly they wanted to continue story with Windom Earle as some sort of undead figure and Ted Raimi's biker character returning as some sort of zombie or revenant. I can't recall the details but it sounded very Re-Animator and broad black comedy, with one or both kind of falling apart/disintegrating physically while trying to function in the everyday world of Twin Peaks. As much as I loved both actors on the show, I think we were probably well spared that. I'm usually very into that sort of thing, but in terms of random wackiness I think the middle and back end of Season 2 really had enough.

I do wonder whose idea the pharmacist, etc. stuff was. I could've been into it, but I often wonder if many of the S3 ideas we know of were the thought bubbles of the two day to day writers below Lynch and Frost. Not to say Peyton and Engels didn't do spectacular work, but they also had a very different sensibility on certain things. Hence continuing the Wheeler thread, Windom Earle's hijinks, etc.

I do think certain things from those plans or the early FWWM clearly ended up in the actual Season 3 in one form or another (particularly in Part 8) - and I still want to see someone drive the truck backwards into the Mauve Zone or the Dutchman's/convenience store or wherever else. I would've killed to see Sheryl the redhead though. Carrie Page is close enough. though I'm pretty sure she's Laura.

I do think Lynch always had deeper plans for Josie/Joan Chen, hence his writing in the doorknob twist which IMO is the moment that upends the show's doldrums and reminds you with a punch to the throat that everything here goes back to the same place. I adore that scene. Whatever he and Engels allegedly had in mind for Josie/the original Judy fascinates me, and I do hope we see Chen on the show again someday.
 
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OneMoreChapter

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Apr 12, 2022
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Great informative responses! I remember the Raimi stuff too. Agreed a lot of that might have been too wacky. Some of these ideas might not have come to fruition. I am really surprised Lynch could not figure out a way to work Chen in to S3. I sort of can see how he might not have been able to work Catherine/Annie in or want to (and I know there may have been issues with at least one of those actors not being able to appear too) but Chen wrote a letter to him about Josie, even mentioning Judy. I mean, I know we sort of got a nod to her character with the sounds heard in the Great Northern - but I'm sure a sequence or two there or in the red room could have been filmed, or even have her appearing as one of the other characters like the lady in the Mauve Zone or like Ronnette may or may not have reappeared as American Girl. Seems strange to me she wasn't in it. But I also think Annie muttering to herself in place of the 119 lady would've made more sense too and Heather Graham was apparently willing (or so she said in one interview). I hope if we ever get a new iteration it focuses primarily on Cooper, Laura, and Audrey in whatever realm(s) they're in, along with the characters they never got around to including in The Return - but that just may be the completist in me.
 

stone cold muad’dib

Sparkwood & 21
Apr 13, 2022
5
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The
I do wonder whose idea the pharmacist, etc. stuff was. I could've been into it, but I often wonder if many of the S3 ideas we know of were the thought bubbles of the two day to day writers below Lynch and Frost. Not to say Peyton and Engels didn't do spectacular work, but they also had a very different sensibility on certain things. Hence continuing the Wheeler thread, Windom Earle's hijinks, etc.
pharmacist coop feels like an extension of dentist bob in the original season 2 finale script. maybe that was something talked about among frost, peyton & engels before lynch changed up all the lodge stuff in that script.
 

OneMoreChapter

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Apr 12, 2022
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I can't see Lynch liking Coop as a pharmacist - considering he got him quickly back into the black FBI suit and tie. I might have been down for it for a couple of episodes. There was something sort of endearing/funny about seeing Coop in the plaid clothes sitting on the bed with flyfishing gear - but it looked wrong too. (Though I liked him going camping with Briggs.) It sort of fit his boyscout nature and his love of Twin Peaks and the trees and nature - and him trying to be a smaltown pharmacist could fit too in a retired Sherlock Holmes kind of way - but Coop felt more fitting back in the aesthetics Lynch preferred of suit and tie. Same with Windom Earle. So, yeah, it might have worked for awhile - but not longterm. I believe Season 3 would have been a soft reboot overall though, so who knows.

I'm also not sure I liked the idea of wrapping up all the cliffhangers in the first 20 minutes or so and them jumping to 5-10 years later (though sit does indicate how these writers had ideas that preceded shows like Lost or even Desperate Housewives doing a timejump a decade later). I think saving Coop from the Lodge and Bad Coop running amok in the town should've gone on for a few episodes, maybe half a season, then jump ahead mid-Season maybe (though still might have felt like the transition from 14-16 to 17 and caused a slump in quality if not handled smoothly).
 

N. Needleman

RR Diner
Apr 12, 2022
28
40
The pharmacist coop feels like an extension of dentist bob in the original season 2 finale script. maybe that was something talked about among frost, peyton & engels before lynch changed up all the lodge stuff in that script.
Wouldn't surprise me, but I suspect a lot of S3 stuff we've heard about (minus the planet of corn/reverse truck, though I think a lot of that is FWWM) may have largely come from Peyton/Engels and not the top men.

I would like to see Annie once more as well, because I think Heather Graham could play the harrowing state the character was left in in the books, and because I enjoyed the continuity between the new season and its connective tissue to later Season 2 events or plot points (or FWWM) despite the general public discontent with those materials in the 90s. I also would like to see the real Ronette once more, since Lynch clearly always had an affinity for that character and Phoebe Augustine.
 

N. Needleman

RR Diner
Apr 12, 2022
28
40
I can't see Lynch liking Coop as a pharmacist - considering he got him quickly back into the black FBI suit and tie. I might have been down for it for a couple of episodes. There was some sort of endearing/funny about seeing Coop in the plaid clothes sitting on the bed with flyfishing gear - but it looked wrong too. (Though I liked him going camping with Briggs.) It sort of fit - and him trying to be a smaltown pharmacist could fit too in a retired Sherlock Holmes kind of way - but Coop felt more right back in the aesthetics Lynch preferred of suit and tie. Same with Windom Earlie. So might have worked for awhile - but not longterm. I believe Season 3 would have been a soft reboot overall though, so who knows.
I agree. I liked the exploration of Coop going native, but I know many people on and off the show hated it, and I suspect Lynch did too.
 

Ray Monroe_43

Sparkwood & 21
Apr 16, 2022
12
13
All these ideas I would have liked a lot for that season 3 back then. the planet of corn, truman in prison. It would have been a very powerful season.
 

Dom

RR Diner
Jul 10, 2022
37
36
As a pharmacist, Coop might have used the job to access the drugs he needed to keep BOB at bay, similar to the way Philip Gerard did with MIKE.
 

Tulpa

Bureau HQ
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Apr 11, 2022
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As a pharmacist, Coop might have used the job to access the drugs he needed to keep BOB at bay, similar to the way Philip Gerard did with MIKE.

Speaking of drugs, what was it he was taking?

Was it the same thing being given to Sarah Palmer like cotton candy? Is this a thing still or has it changed in the last thirty years.
 

Mr. Reindeer

Glastonbury Grove
Apr 13, 2022
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Speaking of drugs, what was it he was taking?

Was it the same thing being given to Sarah Palmer like cotton candy? Is this a thing still or has it changed in the last thirty years.
The explanation for Gerard’s drug changed somewhat. Originally it was said to be a mixture of drugs that Albert had never seen before, making it more mysterious and supernatural, but one component was haloperidol which is used to treat schizophrenia. In later episodes, they simply say that he’s taking haloperidol.

I think Sarah is just being given a sedative to calm her nerves. The US has a long and troubling history of pumping morphine and such drugs into women to treat “hysteria” (i.e., having emotions). I think by the 1980s and 1990s this was already pretty archaic though; I imagine Sarah would have just been prescribed pills. It’s one of those old-timey 1950s style touches in the show.
 

Dom

RR Diner
Jul 10, 2022
37
36
And haloperidol is a pretty low key drug. I used to have to sneak it into my grandmother's glass of water when she was having a tantrum in her later years when she had Alzheimer's. Not something I'm particularly proud of, but it was doctors orders and calmed her down. It wasn't a hardcore drug though: the doctor used to tell us to double or triple the dose if she was very bad. It was a funny (not in the 'ha ha' sense) thing, because the moment she was prescribed haloperidol I immediately remembered it as the drug from Twin Peaks!
 

Cappy

Great Northern Hotel
Aug 4, 2022
62
41
Not an expert, but I think I've read somewhere that the "Invitation to Love" crossover was originally intended to be in Season 2. Its not hard to imagine the hype about M.T. Wentz coming to town having its genesis in a kind of "Invitation"-mania overtaking some of the Peaks characters...

It probably would've been a bad idea, although "Mulholland"/"Inland Empire" era Lynch might've excelled with that kind of meta material.
 
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