Twin Peaks S01 E04: The One-Armed Man


In the last episode of “Twin Peaks,” we met Laura’s look-a-like cousin Maddy and, we found out about a secret society. This is a town of secrets and Agent Cooper has his hands full of possible suspects. Right now, he needs a sketch artist.


Sarah is giving a description of killer Bob to a police sketch artist. She says he was hiding at the foot of Laura’s bed. She doesn’t mention how he got there or how he left.  Is she the only one seeing Bob? Leland walks in and says, “Did you tell them about the necklace? They’re going to love that one.”

The dynamics of the Palmer family is so telling. The glare that Sarah sends in her husband’s direction speaks volumes. This is not a happy marriage; hasn’t been for a long time. Leland’s mocking of Sarah’s two visions has Harry wondering what the hell is going on.


Sarah’s visions are pretty damn accurate, which makes me wonder if the woman is clairvoyant. Sarah had a vision of someone digging up Laura’s necklace from under a rock. In an interesting turn of events, the vision that Cooper had of killer Bob matches the police sketch given by Sarah and, Hawk has found the one-armed man.

Invitation to Love

Harry asks Lucy what’s up, as in police work. But, daffy loveable Lucy goes into detail about the characters on her favorite soap opera “Invitation to Love” and how Emerald is hitting on her brother-in-law, Chet. The soap opera plays at the most opportune times and has nothing to do with what’s going on in the story, or does it? Having a soap opera within a soap opera was a genius move on the part of the writers. Think Matrix.


Lucy and Andy are going through their own soap opera and Andy is apparently in the dog house with Lucy. Everyone knows that Lucy is mad at him, but poor Andy has no clue as to why. Harry Goaz does such an awesome job of playing the clueless, klutzy Deputy Andy. Every episode is filled with mishaps that make you shake your head in disbelief, but this is why “Twin Peaks” was so unique for its day. All the characters in Twin Peaks were a bit quirky, but their quirkiness only makes them more human.

Speaking of quirky, good ole psychedelic Dr. Jacoby, played deliciously by Russ Tamblyn, is playing Doctor/patient confidentiality hat tricks with Agent Cooper. Jacoby does admit that Laura had secrets, but she kept her secrets to herself. Jacoby admits that he failed the girl. In between his erratic babble, Jacoby reveals that he followed a man in a red convertible the night after Laura died. Leland Palmer and Leo both drive red cars.


Cooper’s boss, Gordon, has news: the bites on Laura’s shoulders were bird bites and, Albert is pressing charges against Harry. I was so happy that Cooper (Kyle MacLachian) went to bat for Harry. The relationship between Cooper and Harry (Michael Ontkean) over the last few episodes seems to be slowly evolving. Although Cooper and Harry are both great cops, they work better as a team.

One-armed Man

Phillip Michael Gerard (Al Strobel) is the man that Cooper dreamt about. Did Cooper have these visions before he came to Twin Peaks? When they go to the motel to question Gerard, he tells Cooper and Harry that lost his arm in a car accident. Cooper wants to know if Gerard’s missing arm had a tattoo. It did. Gerard is friends with Bob the Veterinarian. Bob’s in a coma. Gerard is a shoe salesman. All his shoes are for the right foot. This show cracks me up.


There is no denying that Twin Peaks serves a healthy serving of comedy in each episode. The episodes are full of one-liners and witticism that helps to offset the underlining horror. If the stuffed dear head at the bank didn’t make you do a double take, then the trip to the Veterinarian Clinic should. Cooper and Harry find out that Dr. Bob not only treated dogs and cats but also birds and, of all things, a Llama. Our good guys confiscate the files and go searching for Waldo. No, not that Waldo, but the Mynah bird owned by Jacque Renault.


Of all the women on this show, it’s Sherilyn Fenn’s Audrey that feels the most authentic to me. Our little sex kitten is playing detective; a Gal Friday trying to solve the case. Audrey gives the impression that she’s an air head, but she isn’t. In fact, she is very observant. She knows about the One-Eyed Jacks casino and, the perfume counter at Ben Horne’s department store.


Audrey is certainly aware that her father is not only cheating on her mother, but that he’s involved in illegal stuff like drugs and prostitution. This would explain why Audrey sabotages his business meetings. Ben Horne loves money, loves power and, the only way to hurt him is through his wallet. Audrey is going undercover. She wants a job in his department store.


“Twin Peaks” is a drama that has lots of evil stuff going on. This evil is slowly saturating the private lives of the characters involved. There is a hopelessness that reveals itself in the way the women of the town deal with their lives and their men.


We’ve already seen that there is something very wrong with the Palmer’s marriage, but we also get to learn more about Hank and Norma’s relationship. There is no love in that marriage. Body language screams out the truth in the way Norma (Peggy Lipton) leans away when Hank walks over to talk to her. Shelly (Madchen Amick) is fooling around with Bobby, but does she believe that Bobby would treat her any better than her husband Leo? Abused women usually have very low self-esteem and that’s why they keep choosing one loser after another. Bobby, Leo, Hank and Ben are bad men doing bad things. The women who choose to love these men are at their mercy. These are dangerous men, but as scary as they are, there is something even more sinister lurking in the shadows.


There is definitely a supernatural element within the town of Twin Peaks. It seeks out highly sensitive people via visions and dreams. This could explain the dream Cooper had of the mysterious one-armed Gerard. There are evil things happening in the town of Twin Peaks, but Cooper, Harry, Hawk and the other members of the Bookhouse Boys are trying their best to stop it. They just have to be careful that our loveable klutzy Andy doesn’t accidentally shoot one of them.

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