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[Warning: This story contains spoilers for the two-hour series premiere of Showtime’s Twin Peaks: The Return.]
While Twin Peaks managed to introduce a plethora of new characters in its first two installments, along with a new take on a familiar character in the evil Agent Cooper (Kyle MacLachlan) doppelganger, there’s one person who was mysteriously absent from the proceedings.
When the enigmatic young man named Sam (Ben Rosenfield) explained to Tracey (Madeline Zima) that his job was to watch the giant glass cube and wait for something to appear, he made mention of an “anonymous billionaire” paying for everything in the New York City loft. While he didn’t elaborate beyond that about the person pulling the strings, it was just enough to signal that whoever the money is in this operation is going to be a major piece of the puzzle.
Given the cube’s connection to the Black Lodge though, the odds have to favor whoever it is being someone with a past in the town of Twin Peaks. After all, it’s just a little too coincidental to be the arrival of a new character that happens to have some manner of interest in the lodge.
So who is the billionaire? While the possibilities are truly endless, there is one option that would both make sense and please longtime fans.
What if the mystery person is none other than Audrey Horne (Sherilyn Fenn)? In the original Twin Peaks, Horne was a high school student who was often in way over her head — especially when she infiltrated the brothel One-Eyed Jack’s in a misguided effort to help Cooper in his search for Laura Palmer’s killer. Given that she wasn’t referenced in the first two parts of the revival, there’s no telling what she went on to do after school.
What was revealed was that her father Ben (Richard Beymer) had a different woman working at his side at The Great Northern hotel, and it was insinuated that this woman wasn’t the first in the role. That doesn’t explain what happened to Audrey, though. While originally it was believed that her character died in the season two finale thanks to a bomb, Fenn is set to reprise her role, meaning she somehow survived the blast.
Perhaps from there, the sky was the limit. While viewers got to see the Great Northern in the first two parts, what wasn’t shown was Horne’s Department Store. There’s a number of possibilities as to why, but what if at some point in her adult life Audrey took control of the store and turned it into an empire? It would actually be one of the most normal things to happen on Twin Peaks.
As for why she would be obsessed with unlocking the secrets to the Black Lodge, her genuine affection and admiration for Cooper could definitely set her on that path. Though he was clearly too old for her in the original series, Audrey always had a thing for “her” special agent. She loved him and should the circumstances had been different, perhaps he might have loved her back.
However, when she was 18 years old he simply disappeared into the mysterious Black Lodge and hadn’t been seen since. If Audrey discovered anything about the lodge, there’s no telling the lengths she would go to in an attempt to save Cooper — especially if she has the monetary means.
While she remains one of innumerable people who could be the anonymous billionaire, it’s hard to argue that her being revealed as the mysterious person would not be an incredibly exciting moment for the series. Still, until Twin Peaks actually reveals the character in question, everything else is just a theory.
Twin Peaks airs Sundays at 9 p.m. on Showtime. Share your theories about the anonymous billionaire in the comments and stay tuned to THR.com/TwinPeaks for continuing coverage of the series.
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