It isn’t every day you get to be at ground zero for the start of an internet phenomenon, let alone claim some of the credit for its creation, but I think I can honestly say that I can for this one.
This weekend we reach season three, episode seven of Twin Peaks, with David Lynch and Mark Frost showcasing their extraordinary flair for surrealism, shocks, uncomfortable subject matter, awkward comedy and oblique plotlines as we are again treated to television as we’ve never seen it before.
By which I mean, the last time a show broke new ground like this was the original run of Twin Peaks back in the early ’90s; credited by so many producers of multi-strand, long arc storytelling since, as thing that made shows like the X-Files, the Sopranos and Lost even worth considering.
Although that isn’t to say it doesn’t have its detractors, even amongst the faithful fans who have waited so long for its return, despite the premiere screening getting a long-overdue standing ovation at Cannes Film Festival this year.
Yes, it can seem impenetrable, even obtuse at times, the way the many disparate storylines initially bear little or no connection to each other.
Yes, the pacing sometimes does make “the world’s most decrepit room service waiter” from season two look like an Olympic sprinter.
And yes, the tone and style of performances, especially in scenes featuring original cast members in the town of Twin Peaks, (as opposed to the many other locations the story takes us, this time round) is strangely melodramatic and the overall feel of the show is far more gritty and even horrific at times.
But this is Lynch we’re talking about here, so nothing should surprise us, and yet he manages to do just that at every turn.
All we can do is be patient with the Lynch/Frost creative gestalt and trust that our faith in their vision is rewarded in due course.
But aside from all that, the Woolhouse has been accruing an impressive array of celebrity followers and admirers, both on our original platform, the official Woolhouse Boys Facebook page (now on Instagram, too) and on Twitter.
Every tv drama has its hate figures; the ones portrayed so convincingly by an actor that they have abuse shouted at them in the street, a position usually held by the lead villain of the piece or wicked anti-hero, of which there are many in the new season. The same goes for favourite characters, of course, the ones enshrined in the great hive mind of fandom as impervious to besmirchment
But this is Twin Peaks fans, most of whom are scouring the internet for new theories and plot interpretations before the end credits finish rolling each week, so the power of the meme now holds sway over logic and sense, fans preferring to set up their own sitting ducks and sacred cows (the long-running James Hurley forehead meme is a good example) and the new shows are no exception.
Chad Broxford is a dick.
There are no two ways about it; Chad is crass, abrasive, obnoxious and arrogant, but worse still, he’s mean to Deputy Andy Brennan and his wife Lucy, a crime in itself to fans of the original series, so much so that he had already garnered a tide of “Fuck you, Chad” posts on the Twin Peaks Logposting®® page, before I made this nerd-baiting meme…
…resulting in a lot of “angery reacts” as the internet vernacular would put it.
Well, that was just a red rag to a
troll bull as far as I was concerned, so I set about making as many Chad memes as I could, applying his cynical, sneering face to all sorts of Twin Peaks regulars and/or giving him a Woolhouse makeover:
All of which was most entertaining in and of itself, until it was suggested that it might be a good idea to seek out the actor, John Pirruccello, who does such a great job of bringing Chad to life, via his Twitter account.
I’d say it was cutting a long story short, but I fear I’m too late for that, nevertheless what happened next can best be illustrated by these screenshots from Twitter:
Wow! A real life Hollywood star is on my Twitter feed!
Not only that, he is a really lovely bloke with a great sense of humour, who not only retweets all the silly Woolhouse nonsense, but my blog posts, too and even a plug for my book.
So, emboldened by our initial success at attracting genuine celebrities into our daft corner of the Wooled Wide Web, I began a campaign of fishing for other Twin Peaks cast members on Twitter.
And, only an hour or so later, after making a rather neat job of sweaterisation on the mysterious “burned man in the cell” (even if I do say so myself)…
…I was delighted to receive a reply from the actor who plays him, the excellent Stewart Strauss:
And so it begins, the Cult of Chad (yes, that’s actually our latest Facebook page) and the mission to induct as many stars of the show as we can into the Woolhouse Boys.
Why not come and join us? It’s the best thing on the internet right now and, in a world where the news is generally bad and celebrities are often vacuous and aloof, it’s great to find that, just sometimes, you can meet your heroes and not lose faith in the magic they create.