Lost in the Movies: *Link to FBI Agents Chester "Chet" Desmond and Sam Stanley (TWIN PEAKS Character Series #42)

*Link to FBI Agents Chester "Chet" Desmond and Sam Stanley (TWIN PEAKS Character Series #42)

Visit the TWIN PEAKS Character Series directory for all entries as they are published or re-introduced.

My original 2017 entry on this duo is one of my favorites in the entire series; I was able to tap into and describe the unique energy - friction, even - that they generate, musing that they represent a splitting of Cooper's own detection skills in a way that ends up being counterproductive. The piece ends with speculation that maybe the characters would sneak back into Twin Peaks despite not appearing on the cast list for season three; of course, this did not come to pass. Therefore I've left the old entry intact, to be read below. But first, a few more words: if Chet and Sam don't actually appear in The Return, Chet at least is mentioned in a potentially significant way. When Albert is listing initial recruits of the Blue Rose Task Force to new inductee Tammy Preston, he names "Chet Desmond" before observing, archly, "Perhaps you haven't failed to notice that I'm the only one of them who hasn't disappeared without explanation, which has resulted in a certain reluctance on Gordon's part to bring new blood into the fold...until tonight." (For many viewers, this put to rest the notion that Chet existed only as Cooper's dream self, although John Thorne feels that his famed theory could still work if Chet was a real agent, just not one who investigated Teresa Banks; of course, if he wasn't in Deer Meadow, when and why would Agent Desmond have disappeared?) Albert's dialogue also allows him to finally explain the meaning of the blue rose that Chet and Cooper guarded so closely in Fire Walk With Me: "...The military and FBI formed a top secret task force to explore the troubling abstractions raised by cases Blue Book failed to resolve. We called it 'The Blue Rose' after a phrase uttered by a woman in one of these cases just before she died which suggested these answers could not be reached except by an alternate path we've been traveling ever since." In another episode, he further expands the reference for Tammy, describing that woman's strange death and the concept of "tulpas" - but that's a story for another entry.

Chet and Sam are also mentioned in passing in Mark Frost's novel The Secret History of Twin Peaks, which came out before I wrote the first character series but was ignored in my write-up for some reason. Major Briggs' dossier briefly describes the events that occurred in Deer Meadow - "a depressed, working-class town devastated by the decline of the logging industry...everything Twin Peaks was not; sullen, sinking, and hostile." Then Briggs informs us, "After returning to Philadelphia himself, forensic expert Sam Stanley suffered some sort of unspecified breakdown -- perhaps related to alcoholism -- and was placed on administrative leave. I find no record of him returning to active duty." Those words were ostensibly written back in 1989, and from 2016, Tammy simply footnotes the passage, "Confirmed."

On Wednesday, the series will present another character forced to interpret cryptic clues to resolve a case that Cooper is involved with, although in this case the investigator is more successful...

No comments:

Search This Blog