In Episode 3, Coop visits Naido’s Palace in the Mauve Zone. Naido takes Coop upstairs, out of her room ,and pulls a lever. When Coop returns, inside there’s a character played by Phoebe Augustine (Ronette Pulaski) credited only as “American Girl.” What is her backstory? Why is she there? Who is her mother?
The American Girl is a Lodge Creature, and more specifically, a certain type of Lodge Creature.
- Understanding the Purpose of Backward Talking
- Mr. C created Naido, and had some control over Naido’s Palace
- In Episode 2, the doppelganger of the Arm changes the Red Room, and throws Cooper into ‘nonexistence.’
- In Episode 8, The Experiment vomits up a bunch of eggs, one of which hatches, then infests Sarah Palmer
- Ronette was in high school in 1989 with Laura Palmer
- In Episode 3, The American Girl says, “Hurry! My Mother’s Coming!”
- She also says, “When you get there…you will already be there.”
- This character is credited as “American Girl.”
- Carel Struycken is credited as ??????? until episode 14, when he’s credited as, “The Fireman.”
- Mike is credited as “Phillip Gerard.”
- The Arm is not credited
- Mr. C is never credited
- The Lodge Creature in episode 14, at the Dutchman’s is credited, “Bosomy Woman.” Fun Fact: that character isn’t bosomy, nor the actor a woman
- The Experiment is credited “Experiment Model” in episode 1, and “The Experiment” elsewhere (8 and 14).
- The Frogmoth girl in episode 8 (now confirmed as Sarah Palmer) is credited as “1956 girl”
- In the Season 2 finale we see doppelgangers for: Coop, The MFAP, Laura, Maddy Ferguson, Annie Blackburn, Leland Palmer, and Carolina Earle
Right off the bat, we can rule out a few things about Ronette based on the way she talks. I discuss here the clues backwards talk gives us about the origins of certain characters, and those same rules apply for American Girl. So:
- She’s not a living human
- She’s not a ‘transcendent’ human like Briggs or Jeffries
- She’s not Mr. C (lol)
- She’s not a Tulpa
That leaves us two options:
- She’s dead Ronette
- She’s a Lodge Creature
The one obvious clue this is Ronette Pulaski– it’s the same actress! However, that doesn’t mean as much as it would in literally any other show. This isn’t the only case of actor reuse. Carel Struycken, the Giant in the original run, seems to reprise a completely different character in The Return, although this is up for debate.
The two other dead characters we meet, Laura and Leland, are both credited as themselves. So why wouldn’t Ronette be credited the same way?
She’s a Lodge Creature
So apart from the new name, what indicates “American Girl” is a creation of the Lodge? The biggest hint comes from her dialogue: She shouts “My Mother’s coming!” In response to the banging coming from the door in the back of her room. Although we don’t know who “Mother” is, it’s a safe assumption she’s not from our world. At the very least, the menacing, ominous-music-associating creature banging on Naido’s door probably isn’t Ronette’s actual mother.
You may be thinking, “well, what if she ate a Frogmoth too? Then Ronette could still be Ronette, and the reference to her ‘Mother’ could still be accurate.” Except, Ronette was a high schooler with Laura in 1989, far too young to have been around during the Frogmoth event.
Finally, she knows a lot for someone just sitting in a room in the Mauve Zone. She knows where the 3-machine leads, and she even knows that Coop will be taking Dougie’s place. She tells him, “When you get there, you will already be there.”
If this character is not Ronette, but instead some kind of Lodge creation, what exactly is she? Well…
In the season 2 finale, we see 7 doppelgangers, including Mr. C. Each of these doppels are characterized by their milky, clouded irises. the most interesting doppel, however, is Caroline Earle. She shows that the Waiting Room is capable of producing a doppel even if the original person has never been to the Red Room. The only relation Caroline has to the Lodge is that both Windom and Coop know her.
Let’s fast forward to Episode 2. We know, from the Evolution of the Arm, that his doppel is the one disrupting Coop’s exit in the Waiting Room. It’s also the thing that sent Coop into ‘nonexistence.’ Why do they bring up the extra doppelgangers here? On it’s own, Doppel-Arm seems arbitrary. However, if the alternate doppelgangers are needed to bring Coop out the back door of the Waiting Room, it would make sense that there would be another one waiting for Coop in the Mauve Zone.
This fits every other aspect really well: it tells us American Girl is a type of Lodge entity we’re already familiar with, why she refers to the banging creature as “her Mother,” why she knew so much about the time and where Mr. C would be going, and why she’s credited as “American Girl” instead of Ronette. Since it was Mr. C who wanted Coop to take Dougie’s place (the next post will cover this), and since the doppels seem to be working with him (we already see Doppel-Arm help him once) it makes sense that Doppel-Ronette would be the one to ensure Coop reaches the proper destination.
We can pretty safely conclude that American Girl is a Lodge Creature, and more specifically, that she is a doppelganger of Ronette Pulaski.
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