What’s in a name?

After the first two posts that look back at the past of Twin Peaks, let’s take a brief look towards its future. In other words, here are a few lines about its upcoming third season – and more specifically about the character of Tamara Preston.

Who is Tamara Preston (also known as TP)? In Mark Frost’s The Secret History of Twin Peaks, we learn that she is the FBI agent tasked by Gordon Cole with discovering the identity of the person who compiled the various files included in the book (the Archivist). She is very thorough in her detailed analysis of the multiple elements discovered in the carbon steel lockbox in which the dossier was placed, annotating them extensively. She appears to be a rationalist, a former history major who strongly believes in the scientific method. This does not stop her from providing copious background data on the various conspiracy theories and esoteric cults mentioned in the pages of the file, from Lemurians to Aleister Crowley, including Illuminatis to giants skeletons found in pre-Columbian mounds.

The best hint about who she might be is contained in her name. In my book Unwrapping the Plastic I examine the names of central Twin Peaks characters in order to unearth buried elements of their role in the narrative. For instance, Laura Palmer refers to laurels and to palm trees, two classical symbols of immortality. It seems impossible for Laura to remain dead, she keeps coming back – as a memory, as an image, in a prequel, as Madeleine, etc. Who knows how she will come back in the series’ third season?

Tamara’s apparent rationalism (reminiscent of Scully in the X-Files) is a contrast to her surname, meaning “priest town” or “the priest’s village”. There is probably room for her – if she does indeed appear in the third season as a character – to become a more spiritually oriented individual. But one thing is for sure: the etymological roots of Tamara are derived from the Biblical name Tamar and mean… palm tree! One can surmise that this hidden connection to the Palmer family (and to immortality) will lead to interesting developments during the upcoming episodes of the series. It is also probably worth mentioning that Tamara was the goddess of rivers and streams in ancient Britain. This should sound familiar to any Twin Peaks fan and generate many links to the eventual fate of Laura…

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3 thoughts on “What’s in a name?

  1. Tamara Preston’s sidebar comments disappear if viewed through a red lens. According to Dr. Jacoby red suppresses the rational. Is this in some way a comment on the reliability of TP’s annotations?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If red suppresses the rational (the annotations), I would actually argue that this is a comment on the reliability of the files themselves… 🙂

      Like

  2. Tamara Preston’s sidebar comments disappear if viewed through a red lens. According to Dr. Jacoby red suppresses the rational. Is this in some way a comment on the reliability of TP’s annotations?

    Like

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