REVIEW: Legion stuns through its mind-trip storytelling

Legion aires on FX at 10 p.m. on Wed.

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Legion aires on FX at 10 p.m. on Wed.

Jasper Green, The Rubicon Editor

FX’s new show Legion, which is loosely based off a character named Legion from X-Men, gives viewers a unique storyline through the main character David Haller’s faulty perception of the world. The show currently has an 8.8/10 on IMDb. As a young child, David was diagnosed with schizophrenia, and the pilot episode opens with him institutionalized at a stereotypical psychiatric hospital, with the patients popping their meds from little cups.

Through the use of effects, Legion shows the audience what is happening inside of David’s mind. Flashbacks and fantasies are woven in to create a fragmented storyline, some of which suggest that David holds powers, like telekinesis and telepathy. As the show progresses, characters suggest that David is not schizophrenic and that his faulty perception is just a manifestation of his powers. Powers which he has supposedly dismissed under the rug as just his craziness for all these years. But, whether he is schizophrenic, or someone who holds superpowers, what is clear is that David is a very troubled individual who struggles with mental instability.  And, as David ventures through his life, paranoid and lost, and using drugs as a way to cope, the audience is taken on a mind trip along with him.

Legion could be a dud that has masked itself in a mysterious and long drawn out beginning, or it could be an emotional masterpiece.”

The mysteriousness of the show is a double-edged sword. When reality finally seems to become clear, it doubles back on itself and one cannot be sure of anything, of what is real and what is not. Are all of the people David meet real or are some just delusions? Can his nightmares hurt him or is he just imagining his trauma? Do his powers really exist or is the whole show just his own schizophrenic mind trip?

Questions are what drive Legion, and it can be presumed that they will continue to do so. Hopefully, as the show progresses, some of these questions can be answered, because before then, the show is still a mystery. This open ended-ness may push viewers away, but there is something beautiful about being in the moment with David, uncertain of everything and everyone. Legion could be a dud that has masked itself in a mysterious and long drawn out beginning, or it could be an emotional masterpiece.

Rating: 4/5 stars