The Twin Peaks fandom have had it hard in their long existence; the ’90s fans had to deal with a barbaric cliffhanger and cancellation, and both new and old fans nearly lost their heads over the news that director and writer David Lynch may not be returning to the strange town. Luckily we discovered that season 3 is indeed going ahead with Lynch, so all is well. The road may not have been quite as rocky for Gilmore Girls fans but it wasn’t a walk in the park either, what with the 2007 cancellation and the recent uncertainty about a new movie based on the show.
Despite the behind-the-scenes difficulties, the two shows still charm millions of fans worldwide and continue to be the centre of conversation on and offline. In fact, tons of fan theories litter the internet; from Twin Peaks season 3 predictions, to whether or not Lorelei and Luke eventually get married or not. I binge watched Twin Peaks last Summer but went slowly with Gilmore Girls, and after watching the show post-Peaks, I came to find my own fan theory.
That the two shows may actually take place within the same fictional universe.
At first glance this seems silly. One is a thrilling occult drama and the other is a light-hearted comedy, but you have to admit that there are some weird coincidences between them both.
So if you don’t believe me then here are my theories on how this could be possible, and what similarities between each show tipped me off. This is all just a bunch of fun and games, there’s no real proof to indicate the two shows are at all connected, but it’s always fun to play into a pop culture conspiracy theory now and again.
Cooperstown is really the Black Lodge
Despite the gaping plot-hole in this theory being that Twin Peaks and Gilmore Girls take place in entirely different states, it’s very interesting to imagine that Cooperstown is the actual location of the black lodge. Imagine a town full of rumors or folklore; of a man trapped for an eternity in an infinite set of rooms, his own miserable town, if you will. Just like Stars Hollow, imagine that Cooperstown is named after an event that happened decades earlier, imagine it was named after the myth of the lost man. And the inhabitants of Stars Hollow never stopped to think that the lore connected to Cooperstown could actually be real. Maybe the inhabitants of Cooperstown don’t even know, after all, how many of the TP townsfolk actually knew about the black lodge?
Stars Hollow is really the White Lodge
Think about it: what’s the worst thing that’s actually happened in Stars Hollow? None of the main characters of GG passed on, we see no hit and runs, no natural disasters, the worst events I can think of were a few break-ups, a dead cat, and some short-lived feuds. Stars Hollow is a safe and warm TV utopia. It’s almost…too safe, too happy and secure to be true.
What if the reason for this is because Stars Hollow is actually some sort of after-life, or alternative reality? My theory is that whenever someone has ascended to the white lodge in the town of TP, they aren’t going to a bright heaven-like area that resembles the opposite of the black lodge or waiting room, but that they go to a place that is normal, safe, and comforting, like Stars Hollow.
There must be something in the coffee…
Coffee is probably mentioned at the very least once in every single episode of TP and GG, if not drank in every single episode, Agent Cooper and Lorelei Gilmore could probably speak for hours about the taste of it alone. It’s likely that the creators of each show had a similar obsession with the blacker than midnight drink, but is there another reason?
Is there some sort of hallucinogenic chemical in each town’s water system that makes the town of TP trippy and surreal, and the town of Stars Hollow perfect and storybook-esque? What if it’s actually one abstract town, and different characters are perceiving it very differently due to this hallucinogen? Each set of main characters are clearly addicted to the brew, but maybe it’s doing more than waking them up.
Sometimes Stars Hollow has a Lynchian vibe
Despite the fact that Stars Hollow is one of the happiest safest fictional places out there, there are moments that are quite frankly a little too creepy. It’s almost as if David Lynch pops out of nowhere and directs the occasional scene, in particular a number of Kirk Gleason’s scenes. In the episode Teach Me Tonight Kirk submits his own short film to the Stars Hollow film festival, and it’s disturbing to say the least; the black and white camera work and the oddly jarring, and it’s all a little reminiscent of Lynch’s film Eraserhead. Similarly his mime dance at Miss Patty’s dance competition during We’ve Got Magic To Do, depicting the life cycle, looks like it could be straight out of a dream of Cooper’s. Could Kirk be an escaped Lodge spirit?
Anna Nardini and Sasha are actually Audrey Horne
Considering the abusive household Audrey grew up in, and considering all of the murderous and heartbreaking moments she encountered in the disturbing little town of TP, it makes sense that she would eventually run away and find a new home, changing her name and aesthetic in the process. In fact, the original plan for Lynch’s motion picture Mullholland Drive was supposed to focus on Audrey running away to L.A to become an actress, so the idea of Audrey rushing off to Stars Hollow to recharge her batteries isn’t so farfetched.
The actress who plays Audrey, Sherylin Fenn, appeared in GG twice playing two separate characters, one a freewheeling artist living in L.A (Mullholland Drive alert), and the other a down to earth mother; both of these characters share similar traits to Audrey in terms of her cheeky attitude, her alert nature, and her sharp tongue. If her stint in boisterous L.A didn’t work out, then it makes sense that she’d finally settle down somewhere so calm and chill as Stars Hollow, finally finding her place away from death and abusive family.
Sherry Tinsdale is actually Shelly Johnson
Similarly to my Audrey/Anna/Sasha theory, I believe it’s not too much of a stretch to say that Shelly could have also escaped the Peaks town and changed her identity in order to settle down and escape the fear of her adolescent life. Sherry (come on their names are even similar) is the wife of Rory’s father Christopher, and their life initially seems perfect. During their early marriage Christopher tells the Gilmore Girls that Sherry has left him and the baby G.G to take a job in Paris, and because the responsibility of having a kid was too much for her. This is the only information we’re given and the topic is dropped fairly quickly. She returns seasons later in order to see G.G again, but was she really in Paris that whole time? Is there any chance the reason she randomly skipped town away from her husband and daughter was because someone from her hidden past had caught up with her?
Maybe Leo survived the tarantula trap Windom Earle set for him and had been trying to track her down all those years, or maybe lodge spirits appeared to her one night. Maybe Shelly, to protect her new family from this old threat, ran away once more until the problem was sorted out. If my theory on Stars Hollow being the White Lodge are true, then it would also make sense if Audrey and Shelly appear in the show after ascending to the White Lodge aka Stars Hollow.
The openings are disturbingly interchangeable
Whoever had the idea to mash-up the opening of Twin Peaks to the theme of Gilmore Girls I will never know, well, actually it was YouTuber Jamison Hermann, but how did he even come up with the idea? And guess what, it’s not the only video.
The strange thing about this video is that it didn’t sweep the internet in the same way the first one did, and was uploaded mysteriously onto a blank YouTube account named kml e. Did they make the video? Did they re-upload it from someone else? Did it spawn magically from the red room? Who knows, but it’s entertaining none the less. Despite the fact that the tones of each show are incredibly different, it’s odd to see how well each theme tune (which are again very different) can transfer over so well. Though the TP theme has no lyrics, at least not on the opening version, but it’s funny to see how well some of the GG theme lyrics sync up to the TP opening shots; loneliness, cold roads and trains, the thematic lyrics just fit.