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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

Twin Peaks: Palmer Family Interview Twin Peaks
Palmer Family Interview"
Interview by David Lynch on the Twin Peaks: The Entire Mystery Blu-ray collection


David Lynch interviews the living and dead members of the Palmer family.


Didja Know?


"Palmer Family Interview" was part of an interview David Lynch did with actors Ray Wise (Leland Palmer), Grace Zabriskie (Sarah Palmer), and Sheryl Lee (Laura Palmer). The first 9 minutes, 43 seconds of the interview are separated from the actors' interview with Lynch speaking to them as their characters.


It's not clear how much of the characters' explicit dialog or general material was scripted. Was it all just improv on their part? Did Lynch provide the actors with a gist of what they should say as their characters for the interview? In the new Twin Peaks series to air on Showtime in 2017, will Sarah Palmer be living and behaving as she describes here?


Is Lynch portraying himself here? Or could it be that he's his Twin Peaks character Gordon Cole? He does not identify himself here. Of course, he's not wearing Gordon's trademark hearing aids.


Characters appearing or mentioned in this episode


David Lynch (Gordon Cole?)

Leland Palmer

Sarah Palmer

Laura Palmer

BOB (mentioned only)


Didja Notice?


The sound of wind is heard in the background throughout the interview.


Despite sitting next to each other at the table, the individual Palmer family members do not look at each other throughout the interview, only at David.


David starts the interview with Sarah Palmer because she is still alive.


Sarah tells David that she still lives in Twin Peaks in the same house. Lots of things are falling apart in the house.


Sarah never remarried, nor is she seeing anyone.


Sarah can still make the "happy face" when she goes to get her hair done or to the grocery store. This information gives the impression that she is not normally happy. She shows David the happy face, which doesn't really look that happy, just a forced smile. But mostly she appears nervous and twitchy. Occasionally she appears slightly pleased with herself for having gotten out a certain thought in words.


Quotes from Sarah:

  • "No one really knows what I'm thinking. Or cares."

  • "Inside, it's one thing. Then there's step aside...Separate."

  • "I've seen people. Some of them in the medical profession. But that doesn't really matter."


Leland is not able to explain how things are now. He only talks about his memories from when he was alive.


When Leland starts talking about the times when things got dark, a subtle ominous music begins to play faintly in the background.


After speaking of BOB visiting her and of knowing that her life was over, Laura says, "And then there was a time...when I cried because I was so happy. Because I saw what it was. And it was so beautiful. I was awake." This would seem to be a reference to the closing moments of Fire Walk With Me, where she is seated in the red room, with the calming presence of Agent Cooper standing next to her, and she sees a light and begins to cry and laugh.


Like Leland, Laura also does not really answer David's question about what life is like for her now that she's dead, but she does at least seem to touch on it by mentioning the moment in the red room with Cooper (see above) and ending her statements with, "I meet many people with no names."


Memorable Dialog


I am sitting here with the Palmer family.wav

you're still living.wav

I can still make the happy face.wav

you've been dead for around 25 years now.wav

I did not do those things.wav

what is life for you now.wav

I knew a man named BOB.wav

I was awake.wav

I meet many people with no names.wav 


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