|Twin Peaks character|
|First appearance||"Episode 21"|
|Last appearance||"Episode 29"|
|Portrayed by||Kenneth Welsh|
|Occupation||Former FBI Special Agent|
|Affiliation|| • Project Blue Book (formerly) |
• Federal Bureau of Investigation (formerly)
• Black Lodge
|Education|| • Master's degree in Criminal justice, University of Pennsylvania |
• FBI Academy, Quantico
Windom Earle is a fictional character in the American TV series Twin Peaks, played by Kenneth Welsh.
He is a former FBI agent, and former partner of Agent Dale Cooper. He features in the second half of the second season. He is an evil genius and a master of disguise, well-versed in esoterica from all parts of the world. He has extensive knowledge of the "Dugpas", ancient Tibetan sorcerers dedicated to pure evil.
Cooper says of Windom Earle that "his mind is like a diamond: cold, hard and brilliant." Tibetan Buddhism is sometimes referred to as the Vajrayana, which can be translated either as the "lightning way", or the "diamond way." Agent Cooper is also interested in Tibetan mysticism, but of the good variety, so in this sense, Windom Earle is his evil opposite.
Earle claims to have killed his wife Caroline, the love of Cooper's life. He is also fascinated with the Black Lodge, whose secrets he is trying to unlock, as well as black magic. Major Garland Briggs states that Earle was involved in Project Blue Book, as was Briggs; however, their investigation into Earle's involvement was directly related to Twin Peaks and not the usual UFO investigations.
He is obsessed with chess and the game plays a crucial role in several later episodes. Earle murders a victim for every chess piece he is able to win during a correspondence game with Agent Cooper. Cooper enlists the help of Pete Martell, a local chess expert, to force a stalemate with as little loss of pieces (and subsequently, loss of life) as possible.
Near the end of the second season, Earle forces Leo Johnson into enslavement by using an electric shock collar to control him. He also captures a young man and later shoots him to death with an arrow and places his body on display. Earle also captures and interrogates Major Garland Briggs, fairly unsuccessfully, using Haloperidol. Briggs does, however, end up revealing that fear opens the gate to the Black Lodge.
Earle chooses three "Queens" (Audrey Horne, Donna Hayward and Shelly Johnson) for a "gathering of the Angels", by giving each woman part of a handwritten poem ("Love's Philosophy" by Percy Bysshe Shelley) and arranging for them to meet in the Roadhouse. After the Miss Twin Peaks pageant, he chooses Cooper's new girlfriend Annie Blackburn for his queen, and takes her into the Black Lodge.
Cooper follows behind and enters the Black Lodge to save Annie. Inside the lodge, Earle appears to be killed by BOB, after Earle attempts to take Cooper's soul.