Twin Peaks burst on the scene in 1990 and soon became a cult phenomenon, serving as a precursor for the golden age of television that followed more than a decade later. The series aired weekly on ABC, and as is the case with so many other shows containing heavy mystery components, obsessive fans parsed clues while attempting to solve the series’ mysteries. Of course, one question everyone was working hard to solve was the central mystery of who killed Laura Palmer.
Although the series only lasted two seasons (and spawned the 1992 feature film Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me) the Peaks cult endured. Fans discovered and re-discovered the series through reruns aired on Bravo and other cable channels. Meanwhile, both seasons were released on VHS in 1995, on DVD in 2003 and 2007, and on Blu-ray in 2014. Netflix subscribers can also stream the series in its entirety. Now fans will have yet another way of watching the series before creators David Lynch and Mark Frost bring season 3 to life.
As it turns out, Twin Peaks seasons 1 and 2 will be available to stream on Showtime at the end of this year, the network announced this week (via EW). All 30 episodes will be available to subscribers of Showtime, Showtime On Demand, and Showtime Anytime, beginning December 26.
That will give fans a chance to catch up on the series, or perhaps watch it for the first time, ahead of the new season, which is scheduled for the spring of 2017. In addition, Showtime will offer streaming of the 1986 film Blue Velvet, which shares several key elements with Twin Peaks, including director Lynch, star Kyle MacLachlan, and a spooky, disturbing small-town setting.
This news is welcome. Throughout its history, the broadcast and release rights of Twin Peaks have often been in limbo for long stretches, due in part to Lynch’s practice of using intricate combinations of financing for his projects. For many years, it was impossible to purchase the Twin Peaks pilot and the rest of season 1 together. But now that a deal has been struck to put the previous two seasons in the same place as the new one, it will be easier than ever for longtime fans looking to get a refresher on Bob, the Black Lodge, and other aspects of the show's complex mythology before the new season arrives.
Twin Peaks returns on Showtime in the second quarter of 2017. The first two seasons will begin streaming on the Showtime channels December 26, 2016.