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Twin Peaks, Twitter and me ‘n’ Chad in the Woolhouse…

It isn’t every day you get to be at ground zero for the start of an internet phenomenon, let alone claim some of the credit for its creation, but I think I can honestly say that I can for this one.

This weekend we reach season three, episode seven of Twin Peaks, with David Lynch and Mark Frost showcasing their extraordinary flair for surrealism, shocks, uncomfortable subject matter, awkward comedy and oblique plotlines as we are again treated to television as we’ve never seen it before.

By which I mean, the last time a show broke new ground like this was the original run of Twin Peaks back in the early ’90s; credited by so many producers of multi-strand, long arc storytelling since, as thing that made shows like the X-Files, the Sopranos and Lost even worth considering.

Although that isn’t to say it doesn’t have its detractors, even amongst the faithful fans who have waited so long for its return, despite the premiere screening getting a long-overdue standing ovation at Cannes Film Festival this year.

Yes, it can seem impenetrable, even obtuse at times, the way the many disparate storylines initially bear little or no connection to each other.

Yes, the pacing sometimes does make “the world’s most decrepit room service waiter” from season two look like an Olympic sprinter.

And yes, the tone and style of performances, especially in scenes featuring original cast members in the town of Twin Peaks, (as opposed to the many other locations the story takes us, this time round) is strangely melodramatic and the overall feel of the show is far more gritty and even horrific at times.

But this is Lynch we’re talking about here, so nothing should surprise us, and yet he manages to do just that at every turn.

All we can do is be patient with the Lynch/Frost creative gestalt and trust that our faith in their vision is rewarded in due course.

But aside from all that, the Woolhouse has been accruing an impressive array of celebrity followers and admirers, both on our original platform, the official Woolhouse Boys Facebook page (now on Instagram, too) and on Twitter.

Every tv drama has its hate figures; the ones portrayed so convincingly by an actor that they have abuse shouted at them in the street, a position usually held by the lead villain of the piece or wicked anti-hero, of which there are many in the new season. The same goes for favourite characters, of course, the ones enshrined in the great hive mind of fandom as impervious to besmirchment

But this is Twin Peaks fans, most of whom are scouring the internet for new theories and plot interpretations before the end credits finish rolling each week, so the power of the meme now holds sway over logic and sense, fans preferring to set up their own sitting ducks and sacred cows (the long-running James Hurley forehead meme is a good example) and the new shows are no exception.

Chad Broxford is a dick.

There are no two ways about it; Chad is crass, abrasive, obnoxious and arrogant, but worse still, he’s mean to Deputy Andy Brennan and his wife Lucy, a crime in itself to fans of the original series, so much so that he had already garnered a tide of “Fuck you, Chad” posts on the Twin Peaks Logposting®® page, before I made this nerd-baiting meme…

…resulting in a lot of “angery reacts” as the internet vernacular would put it.

Well, that was just a red rag to a troll bull as far as I was concerned, so I set about making as many Chad memes as I could, applying his cynical, sneering face to all sorts of Twin Peaks regulars and/or giving him a Woolhouse makeover:

All of which was most entertaining in and of itself, until it was suggested that it might be a good idea to seek out the actor, John Pirruccello, who does such a great job of bringing Chad to life, via his Twitter account.

I’d say it was cutting a long story short, but I fear I’m too late for that, nevertheless what happened next can best be illustrated by these screenshots from Twitter:

…etc etc etc.

Wow! A real life Hollywood star is on my Twitter feed! 

Not only that, he is a really lovely bloke with a great sense of humour, who not only retweets all the silly Woolhouse nonsense, but my blog posts, too and even a plug for my book.

So, emboldened by our initial success at attracting genuine celebrities into our daft corner of the Wooled Wide Web, I began a campaign of fishing for other Twin Peaks cast members on Twitter. 

And, only an hour or so later, after making a rather neat job of sweaterisation on the mysterious “burned man in the cell” (even if I do say so myself)

…I was delighted to receive a reply from the actor who plays him, the excellent Stewart Strauss:

And so it begins, the Cult of Chad (yes, that’s actually our latest Facebook page) and the mission to induct as many stars of the show as we can into the Woolhouse Boys.

Why not come and join us? It’s the best thing on the internet right now and, in a world where the news is generally bad and celebrities are often vacuous and aloof, it’s great to find that, just sometimes, you can meet your heroes and not lose faith in the magic they create.

Update:

 

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The Woolhouse opens to the public…

You will have read a lot of stuff on here over the last few weeks, about my long obsession with David Lynch’s Twin Peaks and my more recent involvement with the happy, friendly and hilariously bonkers group, The Woolhouse Boys on Facebook.

Well it’s finally time for us to come out of the warm, woolly shadows and step, blinking, into the light of day, because The Woolhouse is now officially open to all. Well, all of you who already inhabit the world of Facebook, anyway.

That’s right, you can now join the formerly exclusive club of John Justice Wheeler knitwear enthusiasts and merry woolen pranksters, allowing you access to the entire woolly wonderland. 

Not only can you enter the main Woolhouse Boys group, but you can also take advantage of the Woolhouse Boys Secrets page, where you will find inside information on the show itself, educated theorizing on plot and character development and all manner of unseen and behind the scenes gems, gathered by our well-connected founding members, not to mention a lot of good company and an eclectic selection of amazing artistic talent.

But it doesn’t end there, because there is now a new addition to our fast-expanding corner of the wooled wide web, the Woolhouse Boys Contests page, where you will be able to take part in fun competitions, with a chance to win Twin Peaks related prizes and Woolhouse Boys goodies.

So come and join in the fun and see what you’ve been missing, use the links below to enter our world, there will be a warm and woolly welcome waiting for you and many yarns to be spun.

***THE WOOLHOUSE BOYS***

***WOOLHOUSE BOYS SECRETS***

***WOOLHOUSE BOYS CONTESTS***

I’ll see you in the trees.

 

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#atozchallenge: Reflections on Peaking in a vacuum…

Hello and welcome to the retrospective Reflections post, wrapping up the #atozchallenge for 2017.

Let me start with an apology.
I’ll be the first to admit that I didn’t interact with the wider challenge as much as I should have done this year; it has been a busy couple of months and I never seemed to find the time to visit as many other blogs as I would have liked. I did however visit a few and I did appreciate the WordPress link site, which was far easier than having to deal with Blogger.

It didn’t help that, having forgotten which it started, I’d arbitrarily decided to instigate my own personal blogging challenge in March, only realising the day before the first post was due that I was going to be posting for over sixty days in a row!

Now, to some of you out there in blogland, that probably doesn’t seem much of a problem, since i know many of you post daily as a matter of course, but to me that’s a lot of random nonsense to come up with. Especially whilst juggling a full-time job, regular blogging features, additional online collaborations, spending time with Rhonda and Audrey, preparing for our imminent house move and generally having a life in the real world.

But I didn’t want to pass up the chance to take part altogether, (because, busy or not, I still like a challenge) so I created some strange artwork out of nature photos to get the ball rolling and wondered what I was going to do for the rest of April.

Then, later that evening I had a flash of inspiration about what I could do for my second post, prompted by something I’d seen on the Facebook page of one of those aforementioned extracurricular collaborations; the very wonderful Woolhouse Boys.

Which is how B is for Billy (Zane, of course) became the first post in my B to Z of Twin Peaks, synching nicely with the impending new series and the fact I was rewatching the original two seasons at the time.

So I think it only fair that I should tie up this year’s challenge with a taster of season three, via a spectacular bombshell that was dropped by one of the Woolhouse’s founder members a few weeks ago.

This naughty, well connected Woolhouse Boy (I daren’t say who) had somehow got his hands on a treasure trove of inside information, leaked by a recognizable member of the new cast and he was trying to think of a way to share it amongst those who wanted to know more.

Needless to say, a frenzy of requests for clarification was forthcoming from many of the group’s members and a new, private page was set up; Woolhouse Boys Secrets, to which anyone tempted by the forbidden fruit of possible spoilers could request access, at their own risk.

I was one of the many who succumbed to temptation and what I saw before me as I scrolled down the page almost made me spit out my damn fine coffee.

Script pages! With handwritten notes!

Our Brother in the Wool explained to us that because some of the scrawled notations in the margins would easily identify who the script belonged to, he’d had to disguise the pages somewhat. But even so, this was dynamite!

My source has given me permission to share them here, in exchange for a guarantee of his anonymity, which I will do in the pictures below.

Just enough to pique the interest and hint at a storyline or two, not enough to spoil anything, pitched perfectly to give long-time fans like me mild palpitations…

WOW!

Like, WOW!!


I mean, good grief, that’s just…

Wait.

Hang on a minute, what’s the date?
That’s right, it was April 1st.

All the build up, (for weeks before) the agonising over whether he should reveal what he knew, the private page, all one huge prank.

And we all fell for it, hook, line and nerdy sinker, in our lust for secrets from a place both wonderful and strange.

How many of you fell for it? 

What, not even a little bit?

Hmm, well ok, I’ll take your word for it.

Anyway, it was brilliantly done and, aside from some good natured abuse directed at the prankster, the rest of us April fools took it very well, all things considered.

So thank you, Joel Peacock, you wiley Woolhouse Boy, (yes, I think it’s safe to unmask him now) for keeping us on our toes in the run up to Twin Peaks: The Return in less than two weeks time.

#atozchallenge: Reflections on Peaking in a vacuum.

 

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#atozchallenge: B is for Billy…

Today, the second outing in my second month of daily posting, takes the form of an update to a previous post, namely my involvement with The Woolhouse Boys and our collective mission to bring the timeless style of John Justice Wheeler‘s knitwear to the masses.

For those of you who are still confused and didn’t click that helpful link back there, here’s a brief recap;
The Woolhouse Boys are a humorous Facebook group who have taken to Photoshopping the aforementioned woollen garment (worn by Zane’s character in Twin Peaks, Jack Wheeler) into as many scenes in the show as possible and into David Lynch movies in general, (along with an increasingly wide-ranging number of other shows and movies) mainly for our own childish entertainment, but with the ultimate aim of attracting some sort of endorsement from Mr Zane himself.

To this end, we’ve been spreading the woolly word, via the lovely Tumblr feed and on the official @Woolhouseboys Twitter, where new season Twin Peaks cast member, Amy Shiels has already registered her support for our cause.
Such is the dedication of our Founding Weavers, to spreading the Good Word of the Wool, that one of them is even in the process of having a replica sweater made and it is this that finally provoked the reaction we were hoping for.

The guys who run the Twitter account have been doing their best to lure John Justice Wheeler into the Woolhouse and, much to our delight, it was one of Billy’s own tweets which gave them the chance they needed. 

Below is the series of tweets which warmed our woolly hearts, beginning with the first time somebody alerted him to the whole Woolhouse phenomenon…

…followed by the one which confirmed that that The Sweater used in the original series was indeed his dad’s and prompted the obvious question…

…to which Billy Zane (yes, that one, the ACTUAL Billy Zane) replied…

…and then the ultimate accolade for the loyal knitters and their labour of love:

How about that for an endorsement, not bad, eh?

Fingers are still firmly crossed in the Woolhouse, in the hope that Lynch has written a good yarn for Jack to unravel for us in the upcoming Twin Peaks revival, but until then we’ll keep the woollen flag flying and continue in our quest to sweaterise the internet.

#atozchallenge: B is for Billy…

 

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March of the Internet Nobody, day eighteen, part two…

I finally got round to wading through a few e-mails today and happened to stumble upon a post from Luccia Gray over at Rereading Jane Eyre who had nominated me for the My First Post Revisited blog hop feature.

As it happens, I took part in a similar first post challenge not all that long ago and obviously there would be no point in reposting the same post again, especially since it was my second ever post which featured in that last challenge, as the first post on Diary of an Internet Nobody got inadvertently deleted in the intervening five years or so.

Following so far?

Well, I suggested to Luccia that she choose a number between 3 and 10 and I would then reblog the corresponding post from the archives for your reading pleasure.

She picked number 4, so the next post you see will be the fourth time I ventured forth into the blogosphere.

I also have to nominate five other bloggers to (if they so choose) take part in the blog rewind and here are my five nominees:

My Silver Streaks

The Thoughts of Life and Me

Willow dot 21

It Is What It Is

Joeyfully Stated

Pop over and check out their blogs, too, while you’re here, there’s bound to be something to amuse, amaze or entertain you.
Up next, youthful high jinx in theatre land.

Prepare to go back in time…

 

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The rise of The Woolhouse Boys…

If you’ve been reading my ramblings for any length of time, you’ll already be aware that I’m a huge fan of Twin Peaks and you won’t be at all surprised to hear that I’m looking forward to the belated arrival of season three with great anticipation.

But although I was completely obsessed with the show when it first aired, I’m not the sort of po-faced, chin stroking überfan who has an instant sense of humour failure, when someone pokes fun at the extraordinary blend of art house soap opera, surreal comedy and paranormal film noir that was David Lynch’s television masterpiece.

In fact, I’m perfectly happy to join in.

So when I discovered a Facebook group called The Woolhouse Boys, I realised that I was amongst likeminded folks with a similar sense of the absurd.

Billy Zane (above, centre; flanked by Twin Peaks’ finest, Michael Ontkean and Kyle Maclachlan, as Sheriff Harry S Truman and FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper) played a largely unnecessary character called John Justice Wheeler, who apparently arrived solely to sweep pouting, virginal sex kitten Audrey Horne off her feet whilst he lounged around in garish knitwear.

Well The Woolhouse Boys have given a new lease of life to Mr Zane’s foppish creation, skillfully Photoshopping him into a range of amusingly bizarre new scenes from the original series and beyond.

But that isn’t all, oh no; for the fascination with Mr John Justice Wheeler is primarily with his choice of woollen garment and it is the skill with which they have edited his trademark striped sweater onto various other characters that makes their photo collages and memes so hilarious. At least they are to a veteran of many a Twin Peaks marathon such as myself and I think that even non-Peakies will appreciate the attention to detail in their creations.

So I’d like to present a selection from the rapidly expanding portfolio, some of which were manipulated by yours truly; ladies and gentlemen, The Woolhouse Boys.

{Tony Stanic, Joel Peacock, Mark Zandi, Dan Jones, Christian Hartleben}

{Original source material: David Lynch/Showtime }
#WoolhouseBoys

Why not follow the Woolhouse Boys Tumblr page to keep up with our latest creations.

 

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Stream of consciousness Sunday: Intermission (My new favourite game)…

I’ve left it far too late to continue with The Accumulator today, so after catching up with ourselves by coming back to the present in last week’s episode, we’ll have a break until next weekend and I’ll use Linda G Hill‘s prompt for a quick SoCS contractual obligation post instead;

” “ham.” Use it any way you’d like. “

No problem…

Rhonda made me us snack for lunch today; a puff pastry tart with asparagus, sweet peppers, bacon, Parma ham, mushrooms and mozzarella cheese, it was absolutely gorgeous.

Right, that’s that taken care of, now on to the important stuff.

My New Favourite Game.

As you may well be aware, the long-awaited third season of David Lynch‘s groundbreaking soap noir, Twin Peaks is soon to be upon us and I’m as excited by the prospect now as I was when the original series aired, over twenty five years ago.

This anticipation has even prompted me to join a fan-curated Twin Peaks Facebook group, where discussion of new season plotlines, old theories and their future implications, TP related trivia and all things Lynchian, is ramping up to fever pitch prior to the May 21st worldwide release of the season premier.

While scrolling through the sea of “Who is the cutest girl/evilest villain/strangest character” memes, hugely complicated and contrived explanations of the many enigmatic or downright weird scenes from the first two seasons and photos of superfans with Twin Peaks tattoos, I started to notice a lot of stripey jumpers.

That’s sweaters to you, America.

Then I realised it was more specific than that, these were all photos of the very same sweater; one that had been worn by season two cameo-in-search-of-a-plot and Audrey Horne’s love interest, Billy Zane, as the sartorially challenged millionaire eco-warrior, John Justice Wheeler.

I noticed a lot of puzzled and sometimes rather snippy comments from hardcore “Peakies” on these photos, and not because they featured a largely-ignored and/or derided character either, but because they were all cleverly doctored for comic effect.

You see, some evil genius had been using Photoshop to insert John Justice Wheeler and his garish knitwear into classic scenes from the series, or better still, dressing another character in his sweater, sometimes even multiple characters. 

They were all brilliant. And hilarious. Unless you were a member of the Peakognoscenti of course, then it was sacrilege.

Anyway, never one to miss a chance to muck about with photos on my phone, I posted a sweaterised picture in the comment thread on one of the posts and, long story, short (for a change); I received an invitation to join the mysterious #woolhouseboys and have subsequently spent an inordinate amount of time this weekend, using PicSayPro to manipulate photos of a brightly coloured woolly jumper (with and without Billy Zane inside it) into humorous situations, primarily for my own amusement.

In the next couple of days I will be devoting an entire post to the sterling work done by the creators of this excellent group, (soon to also have dedicated Twitter and Tumblr accounts) which will feature some of my own humble contributions, but for now I’ll leave you with a gif I made from one of the most iconic scenes in the original series; Glastonbury Woolenbury Grove.

Stay tuned, all will become clear, honest…

**********

#SoCS

Pingback to Linda G Hill.

 

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