OG DUGPA MOD
- Apr 12, 2022
I was reading through a page from one of the episode threads on Dugpa (for Episode 7 - the same one where @Mr. Reindeer posted a rarely seen shot of Cooper's original room key, an object - and its doppelganger - which would make fascinating discussion in its own thread!) and came across these two comments.
Henrys Hair wrote: 'Who Shot Cooper?' clearly meant to be the next 'Who Killed Laura Palmer?' although it actually ends up being one of the least memorable events in the series - by the time Cooper gets out of the hospital bed next episode most viewers have likely forgotten how he got there.
And my reply was:
I wonder why this never became a bigger pop culture moment?
I know they didn't build on it much in Season 2, as you said by the time he gets out of the hospital bed it's rarely mentioned, then they waited 23 episodes to reveal the shooter. But even before this, was this a big thing that summer of 1990? I don't think so.
Were people mainly tuning in for the Laura Palmer mystery and the quirkiness and not willing to invest in another mystery? Was it assumed whoever shot him also killed Laura so it was just part of that larger mystery? Was it buried under the avalanche of other cliffhangers? Did it already feel like it had been "done before" due to "Dallas"? All of the above?
Still, I'm surprised it didn't become a bit bigger. Even though "Dallas" had done it before, it still become a bit of a pop cultural phenomenon when "The Simpsons" did it years later, though part of that could have been due to the resolution. Maybe the resolution here was just too limp in the end. Anyway, as a cliffhanger to whet people's appetites for the long summer of 1990 wait, I'm not sure it was very successful but other than reveal the killer what else could they have done? Maybe had another murder instead?
There's a few replies on the thread, but not many, one where Henrys Hair remembering it didn't become a big deal in the UK (Did it in the US? Anyone still reading those old Usenet threads?) and suggesting it might have worked better at the end of Episode 16, which is a very compelling idea.
So - that's the question for this thread. Why didn't "Who Shot Cooper?" become the next "Who Shot JR?" or "Who Killed Laura Palmer?"
I'm guessing people just cared more for the central mystery (or assumed it was part of it - that the shooter and killer were "one and the same") and it had already been done before on Dallas, plus there were a ton of cliffhangers in the same episode. Perhaps I've asked and answered my own question, though still interested in hearing people's thoughts - and remembrances from those who were watching it live back then. We still don't have many threads on here yet so it might give us something to talk about before we get new episode threads up on here - or more rumours surface!