The third season of Twin Peaks, also known as Twin Peaks: The Return, consists of 18 episodes and premiered on Showtime on May 21, 2017. Developed and written by David Lynch and Mark Frost over several years, the season is a continuation of the 1990–91 ABC series. An ensemble of returning and new cast members appear, led by original star Kyle MacLachlan.
Set 25 years after the events of the original Twin Peaks, the season follows multiple storylines, many of which are associated with FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper (MacLachlan) and his investigation into the murder of Twin Peaks homecoming queen Laura Palmer (Sheryl Lee) decades earlier. It takes place in a variety of settings beyond the fictional Washington State town of Twin Peaks, including Las Vegas, South Dakota, Philadelphia, and New Mexico. Showtime president David Nevins said that "the core of [the plot] is Agent Cooper's odyssey back to Twin Peaks".
The season garnered critical acclaim, with praise centering on its unconventional narrative and structure, visual invention, and performances. Many publications, including Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, and Esquire, named it the best television show of 2017. The film journals Sight & Sound and Cahiers du cinéma named The Return the second-best and best "film" of the year respectively, sparking discussion about the artistic difference, if any, between theatrical film and TV series in the era of streaming.