Checkmate is a webcomic set in the universe of Twin Peaks, a famous 1990s TV series created by David Lynch. Set four years prior to the series' events, it serves as an unofficial prequel, exploring the backstory of Twin Peaks' main character Dale Cooper. Checkmate updates every Wednesday.


Pittsburgh, 1985. FBI Special Agent Dale Cooper and his partner Windom Earle are assigned to protect Earle's wife, Caroline, after an attack was made on her life under mysterious circumstances. As all three of them move to a safe house for Caroline's protection, little do they know that things are about to get much, much worse.

About the project

I've always been a huge fiction lover – books, movies, TV shows, anything with great storytelling and interesting characters. And as a creator, one of my favourite things has always been to imagine the backstory of my favourite characters. I've drawn countless versions of young Aragorns, young Thorin, Fíli and Kílis or young Lisbeth Salanders. I've spent almost a decade writing a 500-page fanfiction novel about a 20-year-old Jack Sparrow.
So naturally, when I discovered Twin Peaks and its wonderful protagonist Dale Cooper, I just couldn't help it: I wanted to explore more of the character, and my imagination went wild – especially with the show regularly dropping hints about Cooper's troubled past.
We don't know much about Dale Cooper's life before he came to the town of Twin Peaks to solve the Laura Palmer case. What we do know is that Windom Earle, Cooper's nemesis and one of the show's main villains, used to be his partner at the FBI, and that Cooper fell in love with Earle's wife, which led to lots of drama:
"We were supposed to protect her, 24 hours a day. My partner and I. Windom Earle was his name. Taught me everything I know about being a Special Agent. And, when the attempt on her life was finally made, I wasn't ready... Because I loved her. She died in my arms. I was badly injured, and my partner lost his mind."  (Dale Cooper, Twin Peaks ep.17)
And that is pretty much all we know about the matter – plus the fact that Cooper later thinks Windom Earle himself is actually Caroline's murderer, and that he feigned the insanity that put him in a mental institution.
Of course, I was intrigued. Of course, I started imagining dozens of scenarios about what exactly had happened. And of course, as a long-time comic artist, I decided to turn all these ideas into a graphic novel. And thus Checkmate was born...

About the author

I'm Lili, 27, residing in Paris. I work as a trained nurse as well as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer (yeah... I just couldn't choose between the medical and artistic fields, so I decided to combine the two). I've been making graphic novels for almost 20 years now (admittedly, my early attempts didn't look too great), and drawing, painting and writing for as long as I can remember. Feel free to visit my website and my blog.

In my spare time, I'm also an avid modern jazz dancer, a huge film-and-TV-show buff (I write movie critics on my blog Lili's Movies),  a short film director and a passionate tall ship sailor whenever I get the chance.