20 Best TV Episodes Of 2017

1. Twin Peaks: The Return - Part 8

Twin Peaks The Return Woodsman
Showtime

Showtime president David Nevin promised us one thing about the new season of Twin Peaks: "It's the pure heroin version of David Lynch," and it's almost certain he had Part 8 in mind.

It's an episode difficult to describe; one that laughs in the face of anyone who would dare try and recap or explain it. With Twin Peaks: The Return, Lynch displayed zero interest in playing by the TV rulebook; in this episode, though, he tore it up completely and, after asking for a light, set fire to it.

The instalment opens with BadCoop and the terrifying creatures who come to claim him; it's so dark you can hardly make out what's going on at times, the viewer left deliberately disturbed and confused. That's the normal bit.

From there we're plunged into the darkest recesses of Lynch's mind, as his obsession with 50s America takes us right back to the beginning with the atomic bomb. The sequence could be stock footage (it's CGI), and the rest is imagery that will linger long past the season's end.

With gorgeous black-and-white cinematography and freakish characters, it's a visually and sonically dizzying tale of horror that largely stands alone, yet also - as time would prove - gave a number of surprising answers. It's the most ambitious, avant-garde TV episode of at least the year, and perhaps of all time; hauntingly beautiful and entirely unforgettable.

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TV Editor
TV Editor

NCTJ-qualified journalist. Most definitely not a racing driver. Drink too much tea; eat too much peanut butter; watch too much TV. Sadly only the latter paying off so far. A mix of wise-old man in a young man's body with a child-like wonder about him and a great otherworldly sensibility.

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