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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

Twin Peaks: Miss Twin Peaks Twin Peaks
Episode 28: "Miss Twin Peaks"
TV episode
Written by Barry Pullman
Directed by Tim Hunter
Original air date: June
10, 1991


Leo sets Major Briggs loose; Andy is mesmerized by the Owl Cave map; Andrew opens the final box; Lucy makes her choice; Miss Twin Peaks is chosen.


Read the episode script at


Didja Know?


For the titles of the Twin Peaks TV episodes, I have taken the unique approach of using both the episode numbers, which were the only titles given the scripts by series creators David Lynch and Mark Frost, and the translated German titles of the episodes that were assigned when the series aired in that country. Frequent readers of PopApostle know I like the aesthetic of actual episode titles, but I also wanted to honor the simple numbering used by Lynch and Frost, hence the expanded titles presented in these studies.


Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode


Leo Johnson

Major Briggs

Shelly Johnson

Windom Earle

Norma Jennings

Annie Blackburn


Audrey Horne

Ben Horne

Deputy Andy

Sheriff Truman

Agent Cooper

Tim Pinkle

Lana Milford

Lucy Moran

Nadine Hurley (née Butler)

Donna Hayward

Mayor Milford

Dick Tremayne

Brock Farmington

Dr. Jacoby

Ed Hurley

Deputy Hawk

Pete Martell

Andrew Packard

Thomas Eckhardt (mentioned only, deceased)

Catherine Martell

Dr. Hayward

Eileen Hayward

Log Lady

Bobby Briggs 




Notes from the Log Lady intros


When cable channel Bravo obtained the rights to air reruns of Twin Peaks in 1993, David Lynch directed all-new introductions to each episode featuring the Log Lady, portrayed by original actress Catherine E. Coulson. These intros also appear as options on the DVD and Blu-ray collections of the series.


For this Log Lady intro, the china is back on the table (it was missing in Episode 27: "The Path to the Black Lodge"), but the duck or pheasant sculpture is still there as well.


The camera is more active in this intro than in any other. It pans over to her sealed fireplace and up to the mantel, where an urn containing some of the ashes of dead husband sits, then back to the Log Lady again.


"A log is a portion of a tree.

At the end of a crosscut log--many of you know this--there are rings.
Each ring represents one year in the life of the tree.

How long it takes to a grow a tree!

"I don't mind telling you some things. Many things I, I mustn't say.
Just notice that my fireplace is boarded up. There will never be
a fire there.

"On the mantelpiece, in that jar, are some of the ashes of my husband.

"My log hears things I cannot hear.

But my log tells me about the sounds, about the new words.
Even though it has stopped growing larger, my log is aware."


Didja Notice?


This episode opens on Saturday, March 25, 1989.


Despite being chained by one hand and foot in Earle's cabin, Leo manages to snag a key ring from a desk and, unable to free himself with the keys, frees Major Briggs instead. He tells the major, "Save Shelly," this despite the fact the he himself beat his wife and even tried to kill her in the arson fire he set at the Packard Mill in Episode 7: "The Last Evening", going to show that Leo's injuries and mistreatment at Earle's hands seems to have inspired some good in him. 


As Earle walks into the cabin at 3:42 on the Blu-ray, notice that his face is plaster white and the inside of his mouth is black. Why? Did he cover his face with something and chew on charcoal? Is it an indication of his fall ever closer to the Black Lodge? His face here might almost be representative of the pool (of oil) at the entrance of the Black Lodge in Glastonbury Grove...a black pool surrounded by white.
Windom Earle the dark pool


At 4:32 on the Blu-ray, Shelly sets down a container of iodized salt after filling a salt shaker, only to be seen holding it again a split second later in the next shot.


In his quest to be a good man, Ben tells Audrey he's going to read the Koran, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Talmud, the Bible (New and Old Testaments), and the Tao-te-ching. These are holy scriptures of the Islamic, Hindu, Judaic, Christian, and Taoist religions, respectively.


As Audrey sits in front of the fireplace feeling dejected about Jack's departure, Ben tells her he knows how she feels. Rather than just saying these words in an attempt to sympathize with his daughter, he may be referring to what appears to have been a past romantic relationship with Eileen Hayward as hinted in recent episodes.


Audrey tells her father that, while in Seattle, she learned that the Packards are using Twin Peaks Saving and Loan to funnel money into the Ghostwood project, but the bank is keeping a low profile about it. 


At 8:24 on the Blu-ray, several pages of mystic symbols are seen hanging in the conference room next to the Owl Cave chalkboard sketch in the sheriff's station. One of them looks rather like a stylized owl face! However, later, at 28:58, we get a closer look...but I still don't know what it is! It appears to have some cross or double dagger symbology incorporated in it. (Update: Astute PopApostle reader Steve A. recognized this symbol as that of the demon (or spirit?--webmaster) Belial. Steve writes, "It is most likely taken from A.E. Waite's "The Book of Black Magic and of Pacts" (p. 187 of the book, page 223 of this pdf version: The Book of Black Magic and of Pacts). Underneath in the picture from Twin Peaks it has some number and then "Belial". Beneath that it has another number and then "Magic Symbol of ????? from the Lemegeton". (The Lemegeton is an ancient book of magic attributed to King Solomon and you can see the original version of the symbol at What I've marked with question marks might be "Belial" again. Anyway, demons are associated with possession which might be the connection with the spirits of the Black Lodge." Thanks for the info, Steve!)
owl face cross symbols Symbol of Belial
Mystic symbols next to the Owl Cave chalkboard sketch From The Book of Black Magic and of Pacts by A. E. Waite


After Steve A. pointed me to the site above, I found a couple of the other symbols are identified:
Asmoday page in meeting room Asmoday symbol Astaroth page in meeting room Astaroth symbol
The symbol of the 32nd spirit in order of the seventy-two infernal
spirits evoked and constrained by King Salomon, Asmoday
The symbol of the 29th spirit in order of the seventy-two infernal
spirits evoked and constrained by King Salomon, Astaroth.


At 8:50 on the Blu-ray, a box of what appears to be Crunch 'n Munch is seen in the sheriff's station.


At 8:52 on the Blu-ray, we can see in the background (it's subtle) that Leo is already in the tarantula trap seen more closely later!


Cooper finally tells Truman that he saw BOB when Josie died and that he thinks BOB was feeding off of Josie's fear. In Fire Walk With Me, the denizens of the Black Lodge are said to feed on "garmonbozia"...pain and suffering...what might be described as "fear".


At 10:54 on the Blu-ray, yellow stains can be seen on Earle's shirt. What are they? Has he been eating a lot of mustard dogs?


    At 12:39 on the Blu-ray, Shelly is seen to be wearing a Twin Peaks High School Physical Education Dept. t-shirt during the dance rehearsal for the Miss Twin Peaks contest. She is also chewing gum and blowing bubbles with it...and holding a cigarette...notice that a few seconds later, she shares the cigarette with Donna! In fact, you can see the two of them having fun together throughout the choreography sequence! There are a couple of indications in recent episodes that Donna and Shelly may know each other fairly well, possibly from school before Shelly dropped out to marry Leo.

   There is also a basket containing a submarine sandwich sitting on the catwalk! Maybe someone brought Pinkle his lunch? At 13:01, the basket has suddenly rotated in position!


Lucy's sweater during the dance rehearsal has a diamond pattern on it.


Dick's sweater has a diamond and triangle pattern on it.


At 14:32 on the Blu-ray, notice that Dick has scars on his nose from the bite of the pine weasel in Episode 24: "Wounds and Scars".


At 14:52 on the Blu-ray, large twin pack bags of Iris Potato Chips and a box of Sweet'n Low packets are seen on the shelves of the stock room at the Roadhouse. Iris is a private label food brand of the Smart & Final food and supply store chain in the western United States.


When Major Briggs is picked up and taken to the sheriff's station, Cooper is able to smell haloperidol on him, the same drug the One-Armed Man uses to keep Mike at bay.


The blanket wrapped around Major Briggs at the sheriff's station has diamond and triangle patterns on it.


When Cooper refers to Briggs as "Garland", his first name, the drugged Briggs says, "Garland? Odd name. Judy Garland?" Judy Garland (1922-1969) was an American actress and singer, best known for her portrayal of Dorothy Gale in the 1939 film adaptation of The Wizard of Oz. Twin Peaks co-creator David Lynch is known to be a fan of the film. There are also references to a "Judy" in Fire Walk With Me and in Season Three, "Judy" has an important part to play.

When the befuddled Briggs tells Cooper he was taken into the woods, he goes on to say, "The King of Romania was unable to attend." This may be his attempt to tell Cooper that he (Cooper) is the "king" in Earle's plot for revenge; he would have seen the king playing card with Cooper's face pasted on it pinned to the wall of Earle's cabin. Just like when he later says, "Protect the queen," he is referring to the queen playing cards he saw representing the winner of the Miss Twin Peaks contest.


At 23:36 on the Blu-ray, Cooper's shoulder bumps the log-framed photo hanging on the wall of the meeting room in the sheriff's station; notice that the photo ripples within the frame, indicating it is a cheap prop, not an actual framed image. We see the ripple occur again in Episode 29: "Beyond Life and Death" when Pete slams the conference room door.


Staring at the Owl Cave sketch on the blackboard, Andy asks if the 4-H Club couldn't have anything to do with it. He is obviously noticing the two symbols that look like a stylized "4" and "h", suggestive of the 4-H Club, a youth organization administered by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture of the United States Department of Agriculture. The group was originally focused on teaching American kids about civic values through agricultural endeavors, but currently has a more broad-based mandate of developing citizenship, leadership, responsibility, and life skills. The symbols in the Owl Cave sketch are revealed later in the episode to be the astrological symbols for the planets Jupiter and Saturn, respectively.


Pete refers to the vice he's using to try to crack open the small metal box found inside Eckhardt's puzzle box as a Cram Jack All-Duty Vise. Cram Jack appears to be a fictitious company.


Notice that a welder's mask is sitting on the counter top as Pete and Andrew attempt to crush open the metal box with the vice. This indicates that they'd previously tried to cut it open with a welding torch.


The metal box's depth of seating in the vice changes from shot to shot.


At 25:10 on the Blu-ray, an owl statue is seen on a shelf in the kitchen of Blue Pine Lodge. It looks quite similar to the one seen sitting on the bar at Wallies Hide-out in Episode 22: "Slaves and Masters".


The gun used by Andrew to finally blow open the metal box is a stainless steel Colt Python. (Andrew is lucky he didn't shoot Pete through the kitchen cabinet; Pete was standing right behind it!)


Moments before, Catherine, referring to the endless puzzle boxes found in Eckhardt's "gift" as Andrew and Pete puzzle over the metal box most recently revealed, had complained, "I can't take any more of this. Boxes inside boxes!" When Andrew finally shoots the metal box open, they find a key...Catherine is finally done with boxes! But no, the key is for yet another box...a safe deposit box!


Why are the Haywards so reluctant to tell Donna the truth about her realtionship to Ben Horne? Sure, I can understand that they started out keeping it a secret and maintained it all this time, but now, when she's beginning to figure it out and directly confronting them about it, why continue the lie when it is only driving her further away from them? Is there some deeper, darker secret to it all?


At 30:35 on the Blu-ray, Briggs mumbles, "How does the queen?" This is a line from Shakespeare's Hamlet.


The opening chorus line number of the Miss Twin Peaks pageant seems to have a rain motif, with the ladies all twirling umbrellas and wearing clear plastic rain slickers. Appropriate, I suppose for the rainy state of Washington, but it's also interesting to note that the clear rain slickers also make it so the ladies are all "wrapped in plastic"!


Notice that Audrey is not in the chorus line of dancing contestants at the opening of the Miss Twin Peaks contest. Though she does make a speech about the environment as do the rest of the women later, it seems she has not participated in all of the pageant events, perhaps due to her insistence to her father about not wanting to be the town bathing beauty.


At the Miss Twin Peaks contest, notice that Pinkle seems to be hitting on the Log Lady!


When Bobby sees Windom Earle disguised as the Log Lady backstage at Miss Twin Peaks, notice Earle is standing in front of the door marked "Restrooms"; he probably went into the restroom in one of his male disguises and then changed into his Log Lady disguise. Notice also that his log is not round like the real log; his has a wedge cut shape.


During her environment speech, Annie quotes Chief Seattle. Chief Seattle (c. 1786-1866) was a Duwamish chief in the Pacific Northwest region of North America, widely known for his skills as a leader, warrior, and speaker and was, at times, instrumental in forging peace treaties with white settlers. The words attributed to him in Annie's speech are generally said to be part of his speech given at a gathering of whites and natives in the city of Seattle (named for him) on March 11, 1854, but since he spoke in the native Lushootseed language and then translated into Chinook jargon and then into English, the speech's true words have long been in debate.


Cooper does not look too happy about his new girlfriend winning Miss Twin Peaks. This is, of course, because he knows this paints Earle's target on her.


Besides Lana, if you look closely in the background, Nadine also looks disappointed she didn't win the contest.


After Earle kills the power in the Roadhouse in order to plunge the Miss Twin Peaks festivities into darkness, what causes the strobing light to come on? Is it a battery operated light that Earle himself set up to give him some minimal illumination to complete his dastardly deeds and sow confusion at the same time?


The strobing light makes it somewhat difficult even for us as viewers to tell everything that is going on. Notice at 44:13 on the Blu-ray, that Nadine is hit on the head by a falling sandbag, hence her bandaged head in the following episode, Episode 29: "Beyond Life and Death".


Unanswered Questions


Will Mayor Milford's engagement to Lana survive her loss of the Miss Twin Peaks contest after he told her it was in the bag?


Memorable Dialog


save Shelly.wav

a connection between BOB and the Black Lodge.wav

the evil in these woods.wav

I could kiss your pointy little head.wav

embark upon our dark honeymoon.wav

I haven't been this excited since I punctured Caroline's aorta.wav

a petal on my rose.wav

Judy Garland.wav

the 4-H Club.wav

don't sound so disappointed.wav


our new Miss Twin Peaks.wav

this is an outrage.wav

even the most craven of us.wav

it's a map.wav 


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