“When you see me again, it won't be me”. Twin Peaks from the Multichannel Era to the Digital Era

Carlotta Susca

Abstract


On its debut in 1990, David Lynch and Mark Frost's TV series Twin Peaks aired during the “multichannel era” on the broadcasting channel ABC, one of the three free-to-air US TV networks at the time. ABC imposed major plot developments, e.g. the revelation of Laura Palmer's murderer early in season two, which the two creators intended to keep the mystery unsolved for a much longer time. For the revival of Twin Peaks (2017, during the digital era), distributed by Showtime, Lynch and Frost created a more complex audiovisual product. The Twin Peaks revival was realized with far more authorial liberty, due to the indisputable celebrity of Lynch and the possibility—fostered by the subscription-based premium cable platform Showtime—of aiming at a niche audience, a possibility that George Gilder foresaw in 1990. As a result, not only Twin Peaks – The Return's plot is much more complex than in the first two seasons, but it also proves how television in the digital era can lead to the creation of audiovisual narratives that fully exploit every audiovisual semiotic level.

Keywords


Twin Peaks; audiovisuality; storytelling; TV series; David Lynch

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DOI: 10.6092/issn.2421-454X/8362

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