‘Legion’ Season 2: What lurks in the shadows

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Welcome back to the most chaotic, surrealistic, psychotic, visually-impressive if not severely depressive, show currently on the FX channel.

Despite technically being a part of the X-Men universe, Legion is in a league all its own, in terms of storytelling, visual entertainment, and the ability to slam a lasting legacy all its own into your over-geeked head.

The show is so surreal, in fact, it’s often hard to tell truly what the show is trying to present, and how we’re supposed to react. (Which is, I think, the whole point.) This season has a tendency to try and show things from the villain POV, and just listen to how reasonable they sound, how convincing they are. Even the Shadow King, that guy that everyone started off hunting and eventually many wound up helping, bizarrely somehow, he sounds perfectly logical when he lays it out, even often in several different languages at a time.

And what is the Shadow King whispering poison into the ears of the good guys? David Haller (Dan Stevens) is the new villain in all this, a David of the future where he rules the post-apocalyptic world of his own making as a King, an Emperor even, the Bringer of Chaos and Destruction. It doesn’t help that a version of Syd (Rachel Keller) from said future has shown herself to David, missing an arm and full of dire prophecy about her future, determined to stop whatever catastrophe happened in her own future. It’s kind of exhausting.

Division 3, that shadowy organization from the Season 1, has had shakeups and re-arranged many of the game pieces, but the general murky objective of controlling the possibly world-killing mutants remains the same. The alliance with the basket-wearing Japanese guy and his lady mustache robots made little sense to me, but whatever. The battle lines of Season Two are so crossed and convoluted at this point, what with the constant flux of future, present and even past colliding.

Much to-do is made about finding the Shadow King’s body, that which was hidden among the many other secrets by the Summerland residents and a whole bunch of others, the body of the man known as Amahl Farouk (Navid Negahban). Dear old Lenny (Aubrey Plaza) got recruited from the prison she was hanging out in with Oliver (Jemaine Clement), who was also conscripted to help find Farouk’s body, but since Lenny kind of needed a body of her own to occupy, a decision was made for her that has disastrous results from David. Most of the latter episodes of Season 2 were preoccupied with the hunt for the Shadow King’s real body, and this bit of information has serious ripple repercussions inside the show.

We know from spoilers of the first season that David Haller is, in fact, the son of Charles Xavier, which makes this an X-Men jaunt. The Shadow King in his Amahl Farouk face confronted Xavier some time ago, leading him to form the X-Men. If you concur with the theory that Legion takes place after the events of Logan, another movie that can arguably said to be in the X-Men universe, then the Shadow King is attempting to incite a literal world-changing event in David. In the comics, poor David is known as Legion for several truly frightening reasons, but we’ll just end the spoilers and speculations there.

The subtle and sometimes very blatant evil expressed through amazing CGI and Narrator voice-overs in between the near-constant mental battles of all the ‘Legion’ characters are gorgeous and devastating, especially the concept of the egg birth of a delusion. Fans may not have any clue what’s going on inside a given episode of ‘Legion’ Season Two, but the cataclysmic visuals the show offers us are like a beautiful-looking but strange puzzle we the audience have to decipher for ourselves, through our own biases and explanations and delusions too. And with the events of the final episode, the likelihood of a ‘Legion’ Season 3 is very good, but who the villains and good guys will be, is anyone’s guess.