The most anticipated TV event of the year is happening this Sunday, but you already know that because you're a person on the internet and you (probably) live in the Pacific Northwest. You have thoughts on Twin Peaks. You, like, grew up around Snoqualmie, North Bend, and Fall City, and you know where pies go when they die. There's nothing more I could say about the Twin Peaks revival because you know it all or know people on Facebook who won't shut up about it all. (Fun fact: critics are restricted from previewing the new hours of Twin Peaks, so, really, no one knows it all. It's a plastic wrapped secret.) But if you're already over it or need a break from binging the first two seasons (and boy, that second season can be a doozy), check out the fresh third season of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which lands on Netflix this Friday, or Riverdale, an Archie-inspired teen drama that shares many similarities with Twin Peaks and gets its first season released on Netflix this Thursday.
As The Ringer pointed out yesterday, Tina Fey is building an empire. With Great News finally hitting its stride, Fey is one of our great TV makers, with hits simultaneously on streaming and network TV. Her Netflix darling, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, drops its third season on Friday, giving viewers more hilarious jokes about the criminal justice system and cults. Ha? Ha? Ha?
This season, Kimmy (Ellie Kemper) is heading off to college and contemplating if she should divorce her hunky cult leader husband (Jon Hamm). Jacqueline (Jane Krakowski) continues her problematic crusade as an undercover Native American. Titus Andromedon (Tituss Burgess) keeps up his meandering journey as an underappreciated superstar. Titus is even tempted to give in to the casting couch of a puppet named Dr. Frumpus while auditioning for HBO's Sesame Street. Hot? (Fun tangent: Listen to Burgess chat with RuPaul on RuPaul's most recent episode of his podcast, "What's the Tee?") And, of course, the irreplaceable Carol Kane returns as Kimmy's landlord, Lillian Kaushtupper.
(Showtime; seasons 1 and 2 streaming on Showtime, Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon)
Viewers don't know what to expect. Critics don't know what to expect. We just know a few controlled tidbits the Twin Peaks empire has rationed out to us, and they don't tell us much. We know there are 217 listed cast members. Mark Frost and David Lynch returned to co-write the new series. Most of the original players are back. It will have a larger scope than the original series and is filmed in multiple locations in the US. Lynch has stated that if you really want to prepare for the show, you should (re)watch "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me." So, make of all that what you will.
Outside of the show itself, there is a bevy Twin Peaks related content: Twin Peaks restaurants, including a pop-up restaurant in London this summer; a Twin Peaks themed playlist created by
Dale Cooper total dad Kyle MacLachlan; guesses at how to make that Twin Peaks cherry pie; menus for how to throw a Twin Peaks dinner party; every Twin Peaks episode ranked by Esquire... a piece in the Stranger this week about the tremendous impact it had on a writer's life... and more... and more... The overwhelming depth of all this content will either annoy or delight you, depending on if you're into the atmospheric, art house vibes of (should I write the title again?) Twin Peaks.
Need help catching up? Margaret Lyons at the New York Times wrote a great guide for reviewing the show before Sunday's premiere on Showtime. The premiere will be two of the new series' 18 hours and the next two episodes will be available to stream immediately on Sunday evening on Showtime(!!!).
(The CW, streaming on Netflix)
Generation Z is horny AF. Or, at least, the popular teen drama Riverdale is hailed as a "very horny Twin Peaks." The show's '90s vibes and filming style pay homage to Twin Peaks, and while I don't think the Archie comics discussed wank banks, gays, and kids fucking their teachers, the Archie-inspired Riverdale certainly does. (Wired described the show as "a horny, semi-hallucinogenic mystery-drama with a potentially high death toll and lots of skin.") The show features ex-Disney kid Cole Sprouse as Jughead (watch him sensually eat a burger below), and plenty of other precocious and attractive teens. The first season wrapped up last week on the CW, but it will land on Netflix this Thursday.
Other than Twin Peaks and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Hulu's excellent Casual returns for its third season, and The Keepers, a multi-part documentary series about an unsolved murder of a nun, is released on Netflix.
- The Keepers (Netflix, Fri, 5/19)
- Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix, Fri, 5/19)
- Twin Peaks (Showtime, Sun, May 21)
- Casual (Hulu, Tue, May 23)