Twin Peaks, Masculinity and Femininity, and the Balance Between. Warning, pretty rambly.

So I keep seeing men comment on videos about toxic masculinity with mostly stuff that only proves the point of the video more, but slightly less often I see the argument of nice guys seeing their crushes flock towards what they recognize as toxic masculinity: he will cheat on them, abuse them, use them, etc. It makes me think of Twin Peaks unfortunate couples, Leo and Shelly, and Laura and Bobby.

Shelly married Leo right out of high school because she thought she was in love with a cool guy with a fancy car who said he could take care of her, and ended up an abused and neglected housewife trying to keep an affair (with Bobby, Laura’s ex, though that’s a deep rabbit hole I’ll dip my toes in in the next part) hidden with much effort from Leo. She cannot escape. It’s an abusive relationship. Stop trying to say it’s what women want. That is some weird high school gaslighting shit and disgusts me, I can’t think of the last time an adult friend of mine has fallen for that heart-breaking train wreck that derails their life. I remember the last time I fell for it, though, and you know what? You fucking learn from it. So “nice guys” who are just “respecting reality” when they’re trying to get laid and kick into predatory dominance as a show of “masculinity,” kindly go jump off a cliff.

Now this next part, and I’m just going for it here real Gonzo style, little editing going on, this is for the femmes out there because if you don’t understand toxic masculinity by this point, don’t be Leo. Don’t be Windom Earle! Don’t be Ben Horne fucking his teenage daugher’s friends, or to an extent don’t be Bobby, dealing drugs to troubled people and fueling other people’s destructive fires while neglecting your own, you need to look out for your own emotional wellbeing, and see when someone actually loves you or not. I see far more men falling for less extreme Lauras than Shellys for Leos. Learn from that and maybe open yourself up to find true love sometime, yeah? And for God’s sake, don’t be Leeland. We can blame demonic entities, but deep down….. Be Cooper and really fight for something greater than yourself. Be the Magician. Be the Detective. I love Twin Peaks for many reasons, but one reason is because of the archetypes it lends us.

Okay. So back to this next part for the femmes. Don’t be Laura. And if you’re Shelly, learn from that. I don’t know about “Toxic Femininity,” I don’t think I’m qualified to spearhead that discussion but I know there’s much to discuss. That’s why I’m going to do something I usually try to avoid and specifically talk to femmes right now, which is why I’m beating around the bush if you will, because y’all intimidate the fuck out of me and I love it but I can’t put it into words.

But don’t be Laura. There’s a scene in Fire Walk With Me that really struck my core, after Laura took Donna to One Eye’s Jacks. The next morning, she holds Donna and says “Don’t wear my stuff.” Laura is a very complicated character to even get into, and can be triggering for many so I’m not even going to get into that. But at the core of it, she was disassociate and I would argue suicidal due to the mental, physical and psychic abuse she was burdened with throughout her life. She had people who cared for her, but none who really knew… She had secrets. She can be the Magician and the Detective, too, but she can also be the Priestess, the Healer, if only she can heal herself. Cooper has to heal, too. This is what’s known as the “Healer’s Journey.”

This is where I cannot speak too far on the women’s journey, because I see myself in the middle. I’m realizing as I have all this time to reflect that I cannot choose sides, I see both the masculine and feminine within myself (struggling with the feminine), and recognize those energies in people I know personally without worrying about gender identity politics or labeling them. I think it’s important to find yourself, and allow others the space to find themselves as well. That’s why I’m criticizing toxic masculinity today, it’s healthy traits of masculinity, such as protection and providing for those you care about, being taken to the extreme, objectification and domination of your partner because of the domination driven by what society demands of you. It’s shitting all over your friends for weird little things like drinking smoothies or wearing skinny jeans or other stupid petty BULLSHIT, the toxic male equivalent of housewife gossip “women talk,” have I laid out the extremes of this fluid human nature and do I really need to explain why they should be avoided?

There’s a quote I thought was from Nick Cave that’s been haunting me lately, “In the end, I am not interested in that which I fully understand.” That’s true art to me. That’s living art, making your existence something bigger than yourself. Any and everyone should consider it regardless of their gender or genitalia. I am not trying to diminish the need for gender and racial discussion as there are perspectives that need brought to view, but in the end, in the very end, we all enter our own Twin Peaks with only what we carry, not in competition with anyone but ourselves. Everything has a toxic side, every human being has a dark side they must dance with their entire lives if they wish to be recycled into the White Lodge.

As you probably gather, I love Twin Peaks. However, there are plenty of things I dislike about it, so if you read this all the way though I’d like to thank you, because I’m trying to write my own version of Twin Peaks and writing this I think really assured me I’m ready to actually write the damn thing, stop taking notes on motifs and shit anymore, and let the story just come to me. POWER OF THE MYTH, YO #josephcampbell #archetypesareradteachers


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