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Women dominate David Lynch's 'Twin Peaks'. Run through a ranking of the best characters, from Joan Chen to Laura Palmer.

Joan Chen: All the baddest babes from ‘Twin Peaks’ we obsess over

When Twin Peaks premiered on the small screen in 1990, audiences were enthralled by the timeless beauty of the show’s female leads. David Lynch’s obsession with capturing the dreamy mood of mid-century Americana is dampened only by the corrupt reality of this “hopeful” period in time. 

That said, Lynch’s stylistic vision is irresistible; the characters’ mesmerizing movements, mannerisms, and magnetic attraction reel us in and hold us hostage. The juxtaposition between Twin Peaks’s visual atmosphere and the emotional outpouring of the show’s most violent moments creates the necessary tension in order for the narrative to work and resonate in viewers’ minds.

The iconoclasm of each character lives on, however, despite these darker tendencies. Their aura conjures nostalgia within the sorrow, and tangibility in the abstract. To pay homage to the baddest of babes in Twin Peaks, here’s a list of some of our favorite ladies in the Twin Peaks universe. 

Because we believe all of these ladies are equally extraordinary, this list isn’t ranked, but rather in alphabetical order. 

Catherine Coulson / The Log Lady (Margaret Lanterman) 

Catherine Coulson’s character in Twin Peaks has a prophetic inclination and screen presence that demands your attention. She speaks in eccentric riddles and can see beyond the exterior. 

The Log Lady is also one of the few characters for whom we shared a moment of silent reflection upon her death in The Return. Her late conversations with Deputy Hawk allude to the spiritual depth of her characterization, which largely remains a mystical force. 

Your log shall always be gold, dear Margaret. 

Annie Blackburn (Heather Graham

Annie Blackburn was initially conceived as a late-S2 romantic interest for Dale Cooper. Whether you believe she’s a plot device or an integral part of the Twin Peaks mythos, her presence spans as far as the prequel film Fire Walk With Me. There are competing theories as to what really went down, but each raises the same question: is Annie an agent of fate? 

Josie Packard (Joan Chen)

Josie Packard makes the first on-screen appearance in the original Twin Peaks series, and remains a main character for much of seasons 1 & 2. She’s heavily involved with the intrigue at the mill, but quickly loses the demure act and flies off the handle through a series of bizarre circumstances. Not to mention, one time her spirit is trapped in a doorknob. Yeah, seriously bonkers. Nonetheless, she’s still a badass. 

Lucy Moran (Kimmy Robertson) 

Lucy Moran is certainly our favorite Employee of the Year and harbinger of sweater couture. Her characterization runs much deeper than comic relief, acting as a moral anchor of the show. Not to mention her son Wally Brando in The Return is a beat generation wannabe played by Michael Cera. Yes, we love her. 

Shelly Johnson (Mädchen Amick

Shelly Johnson is trapped in a loveless marriage at the outset of Twin Peaks, her only respite her job at the RR Diner under the motherly care of Norma. Shelly is given more depth as the series progresses, especially where Leo is concerned. She has a big heart, but let’s hope she’s learned a lesson or two about which men not to date. 

Norma Jennings  (Peggy Lipton) 

Peggy Lipton’s character, RR Diner queen bee Norma Jennings, is as temperate as they come. From her motherly wisdom to her restraint in her relationship with Big Ed, Norma deserves all the happiness one can muster. We think she’s a pretty darn sweet slice of humble cherry pie.

Audrey Horne (Sherilyn Fenn) 

Audrey Horne’s sultry presence flows sublimely on screen. From her stint at One Eyed Jack’s to her signature dreamy dance scene, Audrey’s seductive aura is deeply felt within the Twin Peaks fandom.

Laura Palmer / Maddy Ferguson (Sheryl Lee) 

Laura Palmer’s murder was the starting point for the series, and her name alone continues to ring in the ears of many. From her hysterical screams to those eerie Red Room performances, Laura’s essence cannot and will not be contained. The melancholy surrounding her death steamrolls the series into questions of good and evil, amounting to a diverse array of theories & speculation. 

Nadine Hurley (Wendy Robie) 

Look, Nadine may seem off her rocker, but her resilience and insane amount of adrenaline are completely badass. Not to mention in The Return she’s finally developed her perfectly silent drape runners and owns her own business. We could use a set of those ourselves. Zzzzzziiiip! No thanks.

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