Twin Peaks’ plot fleshed out the town’s charming characters and lore, but not all of the show’s storylines are universally loved by fans.
When people think about the premise of Twin Peaks, they more often than not think of one question: who killed Laura Palmer? While the first season – as well as roughly half of the second season – was primarily spent answering this question, the show’s focus took a turn for the mystical once its central mystery wrapped up, instead exploring the supernatural side of Twin Peaks’ fascinating lore – with creator David Lynch doubling down on this aspect of the show in the show’s recent third season.
Still, there’s always a huge amount going on in the world of Twin Peaks at any given time, with many of the show’s storylines fleshing out the town’s charming characters and lore, but not all of the show’s storylines are universally loved – in fact, in some cases it’s quite the opposite.
Freddie Sykes and the Magic Glove
Whereas some aspects of Twin Peaks’ brilliant third season were criticized for being too drawn out, the story of Freddy Sykes and his magical green glove had the exact opposite problem, being introduced incredibly suddenly in the season’s fourteenth episode.
An English security guard working at the Great Northern Hotel, Freddie was visited by the mysterious Fireman back in London, who instructed him to buy a superpowered gardening glove and move to Twin Peaks to meet his destiny. As it turns out, his destiny was to land the killing blow on BOB with his powers, which considering the character had about five minutes of screen time up until this point, frustrated many long-time fans who’d hoped Dale Cooper would be the one to defeat the malevolent entity.
Windom Earle’s Chess Game
Somehow, the character of Windom Earle was simultaneously one of the best parts of Twin Peaks’ second season and one of the worst. Described as having a mind like a diamond – cold, hard, and brilliant – Earle has an ax to grind with Dale Cooper, though his endgame is to unlock the secrets of the Black Lodge.
While his presence is compelling in small doses, he’s simply too heavily featured in the show’s second season. Sure, he’s a suitably menacing villain on occasion, but his cartoonish brand of evil – including his seemingly endless supply of disguises – often feels more than a little silly.
The Milford Brothers
A pair of elderly, bickering brothers introduced in the second season of Twin Peaks, the Milford Brothers’ plot may have been more palatable had they not been introduced following the episode in which the show’s entire central mystery wrapped up in spectacular fashion.
Their bickering is undoubtedly annoying, but the addition of the attractive, gold-digging redhead Lana is what really makes this storyline so hated. The Secret History of Twin Peaks went on to flesh out the Milfords’ background to a significant degree, but that doesn’t make their role in the show any more interesting.
Ghostwood and the Pine Weasel
The antagonistic push and pull between Catherine Martell and Benjamin Horne takes up a hell of a lot of screen time in Twin Peaks, with the two periodically joining forces before inevitably turning on each other.
By the time the two were squabbling over ownership of Ghostwood National Park, however, the storyline had long overstayed its welcome. With Ben initiating a ‘Save Ghostwood’ campaign to keep the park out of Catherine’s hands, he brought an endangered pine weasel to one of his public speeches, which quickly got loose and began wreaking havoc, subsequently attacking the audience members. It’s Twin Peaks at its most farcical – but not in a good way.
While the long-awaited third season of Twin Peaks turned about to be a successful – albeit much darker – return to form for the series, there was one storyline in particular that sparked a lot of frustration amongst fans.
It’s no secret that the return of Special Agent Dale Cooper following his 25-year stretch in the Black Lodge was perhaps the most anticipated aspect of the series, but his soul was instead transferred into the near-catatonic body of his doppelganger, Dougie Jones. What followed was a series of meandering, slapstick scenes revolving around Dougie, that while initially charming, went on for far too long – with the real Cooper only being restored in the sixteenth episode of an eighteen-episode season.
The Packard Sawmill and All Its Baggage
A significant amount of Twin Peaks’ first and second seasons is dedicated to the business dealings of the Packard Sawmill and its owner, Catherine Martell, who inherited the mill from her dear departed brother Andrew.
As it turns out, however, Andrew’s attractive young widow Josie may have been involved in his supposed death. Throw rival businessman Benjamin Horne and the nefarious Thomas Eckhardt into the mix, and the entire plotline collapses under the weight of its own needlessly convoluted storyline, becoming something of a chore to watch unfold.
Although Dick Tremayne became somewhat likable by the end of Twin Peaks’ second season, his rivalry with Andy Brennan for the heart of Lucy Moran was almost unbearable to watch. This is no better exemplified than in the ‘Little Nicky’ storyline, in which Dick and Andy begin to spend time with the young Nicky Needleman as part of the Happy Helping Hands Program – hoping to prove their worth as a father to Lucy.
Soon enough, however, Dick and Andy begin to suspect that Nicky is secretly evil, with many accidents beginning to happen around the young boy. Sure, it might sound like a relatively entertaining storyline with a lot of comedic potential – but seriously, it really isn’t.
Nadine Thinks She’s A High Schooler
After the troubled Nadine Hurley attempts to overdose on pills following the failure of her silent drape runners, she subsequently slips into a coma. When she wakes up, however, she appears to have a rare form of amnesia, believing she’s a high school student once again.
Following this, Nadine successfully joins the high school wrestling team – where she proudly shows off her supernatural strength – and even falls in love with fellow high-schooler Mike Nelson.
The General Lee Delusion
One of the most frequently laughed at storylines in all of Twin Peaks, Benjamin Horne’s mental breakdown in the show’s second season saw him develop a new identity entirely – coming to believe he was General Lee, fighting in the Civil War.
As Audrey, Dr. Jacoby, and a whole host of other characters looked on completely baffled, audiences did the same, wondering why anybody thought this drawn-out and embarrassing character arc was a good idea whatsoever.
James Leaves Twin Peaks
While fans of Twin Peaks hated James Hurley from pretty much the get-go, tolerance for the character was at an all-time low once the Laura Palmer mystery wrapped up early in the show’s second season.
Sick of James’ meandering plot and mopey attitude, fans rejoiced when the character announced he was finally leaving Twin Peaks on his motorcycle. Unfortunately, fans were led out of the frying pan into the fire, as James’ worst storyline – and arguably the worst storyline in all of Twin Peaks – was just beginning. It didn’t take long for James to bump into the infuriating Evelyn Marsh, who quickly began an affair with him – with the end goal of framing him for the murder of her husband. The storyline is so boring, stretched-out, and disconnected from the rest of the show that its lived in infamy ever since.