I’m a huge fan of movies and tv shows about small weird towns where everything is possible and nothing is true. I am also a huge fan of Talking Heads. Apparently that’s not a coincidence.

united states, 1986, english


True Stories

In college I was fairly obsessed with Twin Peaks. I watched the entire series on some VHS tapes a friend had, and spent hours dissecting the details, and going over various theories about what was really going on. I still think the show was pretty great, but I have grown less interested in the kind of darkness it purported to expose. On other hand, the quirky small town full of weirdos vibe is still very much my thing.

My favorite show growing up might have been Northern Exposure. It’s sort of like Twin Peaks, but the absolute lightest side to the darkness of David Lynch. Nothing really bad happens in Northern Exposure. There are no sinister plots to uncover. It’s just a fish out of water story about a very weird small town full of implausible people. I absolutely love it to this day.

I also love Gilmore Girls, and basically any other show with a similar vibe. The out-of-the-way small town that is full of strange characters, where unlikely events regularly take place. This film is another piece of that genre. On top of that, it features music from one of my favorite bands, Talking Heads, and the delightful John Goodman as well. Probably the only thing that might have been a detraction is Spalding Gray’s presence, given my lack of interest in his work, but he in no way detracts here.

I would love to live in a town like Virgil, Texas. Or Stars Hollow, Connecticut. Or, most of all, Cicely, Alaska. I might not want to live in Twin Peaks, Washington, but I’d definitely like to visit. The village I went to college in was a bit like this, and I still think extremely fondly of it. If I ever find the actual real-world equivalent of one of these towns, I’m never leaving.