Journey into the Mind of David
Another week, another episode of Legion. And, man, it is going for a slow burn. Don’t get me wrong, though: the approach is just perfect for the kind of story that FX is trying to tell with their first small screen mutant. Rushing it would just turn into either a generic superhero punch fest or typical shady organization VS. rebel group tale. That being said, let’s get into the meat of this week’s installment, shall we?
(As per usual, spoilers ahead!)
This week’s episode led us deeper than we have ever been before into David Haller’s psyche in which he continues his memory work with Melanie, Ptonomy, and Syd. And it is an exciting ride through and through, as we get to see the Devil with Yellow Eyes manifest itself to characters other than David himself. As a matter of fact, the whole episode feels heavily influenced by classic horror movies form the 70’s with its whole tone. And there’s a good measure of Spike Jonze thrown in the mix, too, with the appearance of the World’s Angriest Boy. Stylistically, Legion is on par, if not better, with the production values of Netflix’s Marvel series.
So, going to specifics, the episode yet again manages to answer some questions while at the same time opening more for future installments of this wonderful series. For one, who or what exactly is the Eye? Melanie reveals a bit about his background, but this just makes the milky-eyed, jheri-curled agent of Division 3 all the more mysterious. And since we’ve mentioned her, Melanie is actually even more mysterious than the Eye. Yes, she keeps saying there’s a war coming and that they need to “use” David to win it, which makes her all the more dubious.
As always, it’s a joy seeing Aubrey Plaza’s Lenny character that in this episode plays devil’s advocate to a degree we haven’t seen in the previous episodes. Plus, we get to see more of the chemistry between the titular character and Syd, which gives the two more heft to the story being told.
Now, it’s interesting to note that Legion doesn’t adhere to the comics, and I for one think that’s a great move on FX’s part, so much so that I think it’ll still hold its own without taking a whole lot of elements from the comics the way CW’s iZombie is doing. At this point, I won’t even hold it against the show if they totally ignore David’s fictional biography from the comics; it’s just that good a show.
The thing is, Legion is not the kind of program that exists as fan service where almost every scene is peppered with Easter eggs that will make any fanboy or fangirl weep with joy. Instead, it’s more of a stand-alone series that is welcoming to audiences that like good stories no matter which fanbase they’re coming from.
But hey, maybe I just have a deep-seated hate for Legion’s hair in the comics; it’s the kind that only that particular medium can pull off. In fact, I think only Bill Sienkewicz is the only artist to ever truly pull off that brush hairstyle he has, and he created the character!