"Twin Peaks without David Lynch is like...": Authors, Actors and the "No Lynch, No Peaks" Campaign

Curator's Note

This video is part of the “No Lynch, No Peaks” campaign which was launched after co-creator David Lynch announced his departure from the revived series Twin Peaks (ABC, 1990–1991) on Easter Sunday 2015, claiming that “After 1 year and 4 months of negotiations, I left because not enough money was offered to do the script the way I felt it needed to be done”. Fans mobilised quickly to express their anger and disappointment but a campaign run by former cast members from the series was also established. This originated on Facebook in the “Official Twin Peaks Cast run site”, allowing actors including Sherilyn Fenn (Audrey Horne), Sheryl Lee (Laura Palmer) and Madchen Amick (Shelley Johnson) to urge fans to support their attempts to get Lynch to return. The video features Fenn, Lee and Amick, alongside Lynch’s daughter Jennifer Lynch and other Twin Peaks alumni.

In my discussion of Twin Peaks’ fan afterlife on social media I explore the importance of David Lynch to fan reaction to the series’ return. The “No Lynch, No Peaks” video further highlights Lynch’s centrality to the show’s resurrection and reinforces the campaign’s main line of argument—that Twin Peaks should not go ahead without his involvement. As in much prior discussion Lynch was positioned here as the auteur of Twin Peaks, even though it was co-created by Mark Frost who was notably silent on the issue of Lynch’s departure and did not feature in the clip. Equally, Lynch’s apparent refusal to work within Showtime’s limited budget is not foregrounded. Rather, it is, as with much of the discussion surrounding Lynch, subsumed into notions of art and the auteur. The video thus reinforces Lynch as the key creative force behind Twin Peaks. It is his “vision” which must be respected and any version of the series that is made without his input will be inferior; a pie without coffee, a girl without secrets. The campaign also offers evidence of Twin Peaks’ social media afterlife since sites such as Twitter and Facebook were utilised to post updates from those close to Lynch and to bring fans and actors together in the same online spaces. In this example, social media performs a crucial role in synthesising fan and actor desires, as well as reinscribing David Lynch and Twin Peaks as inextricable.

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