Legion is back, and don’t worry — it actually might be more schizophrenic than last season.
“Chapter 9,” picks up where last season oddly left off. The Shadow King escaped in Oliver Byrd’s body, and David appeared to be free of his clutches. All seemed well, for a change, until David was absorbed by an Orb and taken to parts unknown. Now, the show takes a surprising turn from there and picks up nearly a year later. David returns to a whole new status quo for our central cast. The friendly Mutants of Summerland now work for Division 3, the government organization that served as a secondary antagonist last season. Thankfully, they no longer sees all Mutants as a threat, but mostly peaceful folks that can also be pretty useful against the dangerous ones.
And now, the Shadow King is only one of their concerns. There’s also a psychological or mental virus going around infecting people, leaving them frozen like statues with their teeth chattering. We’re not sure if it’s the Shadow King’s doing or somehow David’s doing, but I’d say there’s a good chance it’s connected to one of them. Either way, the race is on to find the King, Amal Farouk, and destroy his physical body before he can return to it and become more powerful than ever.
The big question: what happened to David during the year he doesn’t remember? And is he telling the truth about not remembering it? When they find him in the beginning of the episode, he’s in a chair and surrounded by people frozen with their teeth chattering, telling Ptonomy and Clark that they’ trapped in the maze. Whether he’s speaking about the people trapped by the parasite or Lenny and the real Oliver, we’ll just have to wait and see.
If you haven’t seen the last season of Legion, you should really go and watch it now. It was absolutely one of the best single seasons of a show I think I’ve ever seen, with a really dark, and almost Kubrick-esque take on one of the more interesting characters of the X-Men mythos. And it’s weird. Really, really weird in a wonderful way.
That trend absolutely continues this season. Case in point? This episode introduces us to a world of dance battles, an army of children, and robot women with mustaches who speak for an admiral wearing a basket on his head.
From a technical standpoint, it’s still probably one of the best produced shows on television. The camera work, use of sound and music, color design, all of it is incredibly unique and different, all kind of designed to keep you on the edge of your seat and unsure of what’s really happening.
That’s a huge theme for the show, and likely will continue to be a huge theme this season, the mystery of what’s real and what’s not real. Already in this episode we’re given some conflicting information. Was David really unaware of what happened in the year he was gone? Is he still being manipulated? Is Division 3 what they seem? Or should he actually be helping the Shadow King?
The indecision and confusion can be frustrating to viewers, understandably, but that’s kind of the point. Showrunner Noah Hawley has said that the show is intentionally opaque and misleading, with a schizophrenic tone – for that very reason: it makes the puzzle even harder to solve.