Legion: Chapter 15

"Ostensibly on Legion..."

I totally didn't post this and forget about it for fifteen minutes before I remembered that I didn't actually add a picture to the top of this review. Nope! (Hush, you one person who already clicked on it.)

If there is one part of this show that I have been neglecting in my reviews, it are the lecture-like asides that the Jon Hamm narrator gives. They felt like the kind of thing that only really made sense during a repeat viewing once you knew the whole picture going in, so I figured that I would wait until we get all of the puzzles pieces before I start dissecting it. All of this is to say that I think we have all of the pieces now. At the very least, we have all of the pieces necessary to make a whole, completed thought.

I've wondered what the goals of the asides were for the entire season. At first, they seemed like disguised fourth wall breaks meant to comment about audience culture and how we dig through every little detail searching for clues as to what is going to happen next. I didn't think that there was necessarily any tie-in to the plot going on. I was definitely wrong.

The Creepy Ink Bird of Delusion finally paid off and in a gruesome, bloody way. Oof. Ptonomy has been a character that has largely operated near the fringes, and it feels like a lot of his arc has happened during spilt second scenes that are easily forgotten about due to the general craziness of Legion episodes. But the egg of the idea that was planted in his mind all of those episodes ago finally hatched.

The early parts of it almost played out like a horror movie. Even though the scene was in the previews, I still jumped when Ptonomy looked under his covers to see a Vermillion face. The feeling continued with Clark slowly walking away from the Weeping Angel-esque Vermillion, complete with bizarre dance poses. In these moments, I wasn't quite sure what was real and what was a delusion. Thankfully, Legion actually provided some clarity for once and made it very clear that all of this was a product of the Creepy Ink Bird of Delusion.

While David was able to pluck the insanity from Syd and Clark's minds, it was too late for Ptonomy. The madness had grown too much, and it killed him. I think. Ptonomy's physical body is definitely dead. I saw spine, and you should never be able to see someone's spine. But his mind is still alive inside of the Mainframe, whatever the hell that is. I'm not quite sure what this means going forward in terms of the character's longterm future. I think that he'll definitely stick around for the rest of the season. But beyond that? I have no idea.

Regardless, this entire arc was to demonstrate the point that Jon Hamm was making. Even the smallest seed of a false idea can be incredibly dangerous. It grows and spreads and leaves destruction in its wake as the people infected try to cope with the new reality that they find themselves dealing with. And because they're only human, they cope badly. I'm not going to say that this whole thing is a bit of a social, cultural commentary and critique, but I think that it really is.

The other main takeaway from this arc is a message that we've been getting a few times now: David is incredibly powerful and is increasingly comfortable using that power to do harm unto others. Again, David exploded a living creature in a way very similar to how Lenny killed the Eye last season. That, plus the conversation that Farouk had with Future Syd, points to one, fairly obvious outcome: that David is the reason why the world ends.

Or is he? Legion is really banging this fact over our heads, to the point where I think that it's all misdirection. Farouk described the heroes in very specific terms: "white skin and blue eyes." Ignoring for the moment that Farouk continuously frames the battles between him and those who oppose him in racial terms, we can take that description and look to see who among the cast it fits. Yes, it fits David. But it also fits Syd.

Stick with me here for a moment. I swear I'm not just grasping at straws. Okay, maybe I am. But there are a lot of straws to grasp, if that makes any sense at all. Farouk and Future Syd never verbally confirmed that David was the one who ended the world. It is heavily implied, yes, but implications can be tricky. They tend to support something that you already are primed to think.

Syd ending the world would also explain why she is so desperate to have Farouk win the race between him and David, despite the fact that Farouk horribly violated Amy. (I won't say killed. Not yet. She's popped up too many times for me to believe that she's dead.) This isn't a question of saving David's soul, but possibly his life. And it's definitely to save Syd's soul. Future Syd acknowledges that she isn't David's Syd anymore. Too much about her has changed. Maybe that's because of whatever hardship that she has endured in the apocalyptic world, yes, but maybe it's because she has this horrible weight on her.

I have one final bit of evidence though which I think is the strongest. Farouk called Future Syd "the goddess," and then told her that the two of them would be able to rule the world together, side by side. The word "goddess" is very, very telling. Farouk sees himself as a god. He is above all other life on earth with the exception of David, who he also acknowledges as a god, albeit an immature and still developing one. This is not a general term that he uses for mutants. It applies only to him and David. And now Syd. By calling Syd a goddess, he places her on the same playing field as himself. He acknowledges her power is comparable to his. That just feels huge to me.

I strongly suspect that Syd, not David, is the one who will be responsible for the end of the world. I think that she is going to deliberately touch David, swap bodies with him, and, in a callback to the first episode, then not be able to control the incredible power that David has.

Why does she do this? That part I'm still iffy on, but I think it'll stem from the increased friction and pressure that Future Syd's existence places on their relationship. Because there is a strain. I got uncomfortable very quickly once Future Syd and David kissed. It felt like some kind of betrayal, even though it technically isn't. Syd is jealous and uncomfortable over the entire situation, and that is not necessarily a good place for someone who is as protective over their relationship as she is to be. It's not good.

The only thing left to really talk about is Lenny. I'm not really sure what exactly is going on there. Syd seems convinced that she's just a diversion tactic, but I think that there's more to her. I said already that I don't think that Amy is necessarily dead. I did last episode, but she appeared on two separate occasions in this one. That's two too many if Legion wants me to believe that she's truly dead and gone. I'm not sure if she's trapped inside of Lenny's mind or if Lenny simply has Amy's memories, but something isn't right here.

Without the Meds, It's Really Hard to Keep Things Straight

David and the rest of the Summerland gang are working for Division Three, which includes the paranoid Clark and the bizarre Admiral Fukuyama, who is apparently just a normal man. Well, as normal as someone who wears a basket over their head can be.

Division Three is searching for Farouk/The Shadow King with the intent to kill him. David is now also trying to destroy Farouk by setting his body on fire due to Farouk seemingly murdering Amy.

According to Future Syd, Farouk is the only one who can stop the cataclysmic event that will destroy the vast majority of the population. Therefore, David cannot bash his head in in the desert like he's supposed to.

Farouk wants to find his real body. Unfortunately, the only person, a monk, who knew the location of the body jumped off a roof last episode. Regaining his real body will greatly increase Farouk's power.

Oliver and Farouk used Amy's body in order to bring Lenny back to life, presumably killing the former. Although it is unclear now if Amy is actually dead or if Lenny is actually Lenny.

Lenny is now at Division Three, claiming to be one of the good guys. Or at the very least, anti-Farouk and a victim in all of this.

Kerry and Cary are having issues with their mutant ability.

The Creepy Ink Bird of Delusion has been defeated by David, but not without causalities. Ptonomy is dead, but his mind has been uploaded into the Mainframe, where there is also an old woman in a rocking chair.

The Vermillion can regenerate damage, although it looks like it might take some time to do so.


I think that's everything. I've gotten a couple of comments now saying how these reviews help people understand what's actually happening on this show, and I just want to take a moment to say how much those mean to me. I'm glad I'm helpful!
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An Honest Fangirl loves superheroes, science fiction, fantasy, and really bad horror movies. And sometimes she writes about them.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness, Fangirl, I REALLY needed your unpacking of this one! Your theory of Syd is interesting and does make sense (if anything makes sense on this show...).
The lecture we got, and the one line at the end of it - which is scarier the fear or the fearful? (not sure I got that exactly right) That just seemed to me like a big nod and the craziness of the real world these days...
Sooze