Legion: Chapter 15
May 16, 2018 6:36 AM - Season 2, Episode 7 - Subscribe

David vows revenge against Farouk.
posted by elsietheeel (33 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
So David does cause the end of the world after killing Farouk.

Chapter 8: Moral Panic - there wasn't a narrated chapter last week, so what happened to 7? Who knows!

I like how Farouk's hooked his car up to function like David's sensory deprivation/amplification pod.

There were very early 70s Pink Floyd music cues again on the way to confront Fukyama.

Ptonomy. :'( I wonder if his mutant abilities are transferred into the mainframe (or... you know, giant tree... or giant computer) along with his mind.

David trying to reason with the monster was hilarious. And then he made it implode.
posted by elsietheeel at 7:01 AM on May 16


I like how Farouk's hooked his car up to function like David's sensory deprivation/amplification pod.

It's also more than a bit suggestive of a particular method of suicide, the way he vented the "exhaust" into the passenger compartment, by way of the purple goo reservoir under the hood.
posted by Strange Interlude at 7:34 AM on May 16


I'm a little frustrated by the limited options being presented here. Either save Farouk to stop David or David kills the world. Apparently David is irredeemable in that future? Wouldn't there be many futures where he doesn't kill the world? Why is that one so special?

Still loving the show but once you start playing with time and alternate futures you open a can of worms that usually not done very well.
posted by kokaku at 8:54 AM on May 16


Also, I do love the fakeout that the fear monster was a side-story and not really part of the main Farouk plot.
posted by kokaku at 8:55 AM on May 16


Also, I do love the fakeout that the fear monster was a side-story and not really part of the main Farouk plot.

Although didn't we see the initial "bad idea" egg being hatched by Farouk-in-Lenny-guise back in episode 1 or 2? I feel like it's definitely a part of Farouk's plan to screw with David and the Summerlanders, resulting in one significant casualty.

Speaking of which, I really hope that Ptonomy getting uploaded to the mainframe finally gives the show an opportunity to spotlight him better; Now that David is projecting his mind hither and yon all by himself, Ptonomy seems a bit superfluous as a character. Hopefully that changes!
posted by Strange Interlude at 9:47 AM on May 16 [2 favorites]


I had thought that fukiyama and his androids were dead since we didn't see them after their encounter with the migo monk. guess not.
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:40 PM on May 16 [1 favorite]


Do we have a definite timeframe for the show? Hyperactive last season, Two Tribes this season, I’d be amused if this didn’t just _look_ retro, but actually was.
posted by Kyol at 6:07 PM on May 16


I was saddened to see Ptonomy killed, but he seemed conscious of his new uploaded existence, so I'm hoping this follows meta-comic book logic as a power-up and a new avenue for character development for him. I'm also hoping they can rebuild one (or more) of the Vermillion bodies into an avatar for Ptonomy to download into and still physically interact with the rest off the cast.
posted by Fiberoptic Zebroid and The Hypnagogic Jerks at 7:12 PM on May 16


Do we have a definite timeframe for the show?

I think the Internet was mentioned (by name) at some point this season.
posted by BungaDunga at 7:20 PM on May 16


Ah, it's in episode 5 where Lenny is talking about her childhood to the Section 3 guy who's name is apparently Clark Debussy.
posted by BungaDunga at 7:29 PM on May 16


Ptonomy :'-( . Man so sad to see him "transition". I'm wondering if he could return, so to speak, the same way that Lenny did.

Or....

Perhaps he is still a threat. It seemed that he was a vessel for a virus. Maybe it (the virus, the ick, or Farourk created monster) is still in him and now whatever that was is in the mainframe. Hmmmm? Screenrant posed some great questions.



Question
posted by serenitynow at 10:14 AM on May 17


Perhaps he is still a threat. It seemed that he was a vessel for a virus. Maybe it (the virus, the ick, or Farourk created monster) is still in him and now whatever that was is in the mainframe.

I hope that isn't the case -- first of all, the threat was disposed of pretty handily in this episode, so any kind of repeat visit (which this novelty-loving show avoids like the plague) is bound to be an exercise in diminishing returns. Secondly, I agree with other viewers who have pointed out that killing off the lone black character plays into some not-great genre tropes; I'm not sure that it would be desirable for them to double down on that by also turning the same POC character into an undead villain.

My sense is that this could be a counter-intuitive character-building/revealing moment for Ptonomy, but mainly insofar as he is a memory-focused character who is now himself a memory stored away for retrieval.
posted by Strange Interlude at 10:48 AM on May 17


My sense is that this could be a counter-intuitive character-building/revealing moment for Ptonomy, but mainly insofar as he is a memory-focused character who is now himself a memory stored away for retrieval.

This was my read (and hope) too. It makes sense thematically that you’d put him in the heart of a computer. But when the evil chicken erupted from his back, my immediate thought was this is the one black character you have, and you’re going to destroy his body? Again, I understand from a writing perspective why they chose him, but I hope they understood and planned for the implications of that decision, and I really hope it isn’t permanent.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:57 PM on May 17 [2 favorites]


To be honest, I really didn't like this episode, and it kind of made me want to stop watching.

I thought they were going somewhere with all the delusion monster stuff-- I thought maybe when the monster was killed, everyone would look at each other and say, oh my god, X was really Y all along! That is, I thought the delusion was a specific delusion that was going to be corrected, as opposed to some kind of general nonspecific freak out / hallucination that led them to attack each other.

I guess my problem with this episode, related to that, is that this season doesn't really have much momentum for me. The teeth chattering was very cool, and then the monk died. The delusion thread was interesting, but now it seems like it's over. And looking at the while season.... First David has a whole bunch of missing time, and then he's supposed to cooperate with Farouk because of future Syd, and then the monk who's the only one who knows where the body is dies, and then David's sister is killed / body swapped, now Ptonomy is killed / in the mainframe... I don't know. The main thread seems to keep starting and stopping.

I'm going to stick around to see how it all comes together, but instead of saying "oh man, I can't wait to see what happens next," I find myself saying, "well, that was cool, but I don't really know what the next episode will be about." And that's... Fine, it's all very stylish, it's got some big ideas, I'm happy this show is being made, and each episode by itself has been good, but... I don't know, something here isn't quite working for me. Each character is complex and ambiguous, the nature of reality is so ambiguous, that it's hard for me to really root for any of the characters or feel like anything really has stakes. It's getting to the point where there are so many questions that I don't really care about any of the answers, maybe.

How are you guys feeling about this season so far?
posted by Rinku at 1:18 AM on May 18 [3 favorites]


The season has seemed unfocused and I'm not sure the internal logic holds up. Farouk had David agreeing to retrieve his body and then for no particular reason that I can see kills Amy to resurrect Lenny which now has David committed to fighting him. No matter how many dialogues with Farouk there are, I don't understand how the logic of that works. Maybe Farouk is playing David in order to get him to unleash his power for some reason we haven't been privy to yet? Maybe the only way for Farouk to return to his body is for David to try to destroy it?

The future Syd/current Syd tension seems forced too.


And I really hope killing Ptonomy pays off somehow.
posted by kokaku at 6:02 AM on May 18


I agree, the stakes seem much more McGuffiny than in the past season. Last year, David was literally fighting for his life and sanity, but also for the lives of his friends, and there was perhaps a brighter line between reality and the characters' personal mind palaces.

This year, everything seems to be happening at a bit of a remove, like elements of a half-remembered dream. I'm banking on that being an intentional part of the show -- although it does make it harder to access in terms of surface-level narrative. It might be the first superhero show to really replicate the feel of a Grant Morrison comic when he's in full psychedelic-shaman mode -- all esoteric themes and symbolism, with only the briefest of respects paid to genre conventions and the characters' base reality.

Like with Twin Peaks S03 last year (and Westworld this year) I'm here for the ride.
posted by Strange Interlude at 6:06 AM on May 18 [1 favorite]


That is, I thought the delusion was a specific delusion that was going to be corrected, as opposed to some kind of general nonspecific freak out / hallucination that led them to attack each other.

It was specific - it was all focused on paranoia about (granted, the paranoia-inducing) Admiral Fukiyama, in a deliberate attempt to have the "outsiders" destroy the Division 3 leadership. If David hadn't shown up and sorted what was happening, this schism would have completely obliterated his cohort's shaky alliance with D3 and left them on the run or dead.
posted by FatherDagon at 11:34 AM on May 18 [3 favorites]


I'm still very much on board. It isn't as tight as the first season, and seems to be looking at the implications and issues and fallout of Farouk's quest from a lot of different angles. I get more of the feeling like I'm looking at a topographical map of what's going on rather than being carried inexorably from thing to thing. That's not quite as compelling, but I'm enjoying it for different reasons.

I spent most of the first season not knowing what the hell was going on and not really caring, trusting the writers and directors and actors because what they were doing was so good. This time I'm more grounded in what's happening and watching things taking on a more contemplative and deliberative pace, and again, I'm okay with it because everyone's doing a really good job.
posted by middleclasstool at 11:38 AM on May 18 [2 favorites]


I get more of the feeling like I'm looking at a topographical map of what's going on rather than being carried inexorably from thing to thing.

I feel that way too, and I think it's intentional to put the audience in the headspace of the characters being either in the dark, under psychic assault, or both. Like how the first season was presented in a way to make you question the reality of what you're seeing, there's some of that still going on but applied more to a superhero fiction plot than to the first season's mystery of the nature of David.
posted by jason_steakums at 12:45 PM on May 18 [1 favorite]


Also this was maybe the most Sienkiewicz era New Mutants inspired episode so far, maybe it's because I just reread the Demon Bear Saga but this felt like that in many places. The whole season has had a lot of that feel but especially this episode in particular.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:02 PM on May 18 [1 favorite]


I'm obsessed over the past year with noting which characters (in any shows and films, really) get "good guy" and "villain" tailoring.

In trying to explain this idea to a non-USian coworker (he's from Korea), I started with the Praetorian Guard vs. Jedi costuming styles.

But look, as soon as I saw how sleek and tailored David's outfits were in his "blackouts" with Farouk and alternate futures -- see here, and here -- I knew he was the villain all along this season.

Villains get invisible seams/zippers, shiny hardware or materials, bespoke suits, lined jackets, shawl collars and architectural necktie knots (see: The Magicians).
Good guys get earth-toned fabrics that are textured/rough/"worn in," threadbare buttons and drapey, forgiving fabrics with no visible insignia or patina.

David's shirts always look shitty and threadbare in his good-guy drag scenes with real world friends. He's trying but his underlying self is a villain.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 5:23 PM on May 19 [5 favorites]


Speaking of, Farouk rocked the hell out of those mechanic's coveralls.
posted by jason_steakums at 6:04 PM on May 19 [3 favorites]


I really don't think we're done with the delusions -- we don't know what caused them, and we have a person/image (the shushing woman in the rocking chair) to lead off of.

Unicorn: those images of alternate futures you shared are specifically ones from a timeline where David has been fully taken over by Farouk.
posted by flatluigi at 6:06 PM on May 19


Yep exactly. The sharper his tailoring is, the more evil David becomes. You just watch.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 7:23 PM on May 19 [1 favorite]


ok but in the current reality he was running around in pajamas with stains on them
posted by numaner at 8:16 PM on May 20


"good guy" and "villain" tailoring

this is an amazing observation and I'm going to be looking for it in everything, thanks!
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 3:37 AM on May 21 [1 favorite]


That's a good catch, yeah, and I have also wondered if anyone has been able to decipher David's t-shirts from season one. Because that's gotta be a thing, those screen print designs, right?

Also, don't tie your necktie like in those links unless you are in fact trying to look like a wizard, which is a valid choice. Otherwise, that is WAY too much work for...I don't know what even to call that effect.
posted by middleclasstool at 12:08 PM on May 21


As far as t-shirt designs, I should take pix of the TV when I'm watching but here's what I discerned from the geometry/numerology of this season:

Farouk is a 7, (check out his sunglasses), David is a 6. At least visually. All the bad-guy-aligned characters, also a 7. All the Summerland/real-life-aligned characters and Division 3 background rooms, also a 6.

According to numerology:

Six represents equilibrium, harmony and balance. It is the perfect number within the decad: 1+2+3=6. It is the most productive of all numbers.

It symbolizes union of polarity, the hermaphrodite being represented by the two interlaced triangles, the upward- pointing as male, fire and the heavens, and the downward-pointing as female, the waters and the earth.

Six is the symbol of luck; love; health; beauty; chance. It is a winning number at the throw of the dice in the West.

Chinese: Six represents Universe, with its four cardinal points and the Above and Below - making it a total of six directions. Chinese culture there are six senses: tastse, touch, smell, sight, hearing, the sixth being mind. The day and night each have six periods.

Christian: Six is perfection; completion because man was created on the sixth day. Six is man's number. The most obvious use of this number is in the notorious passage containing 666.

(Rev 13:18 NIV) This calls for wisdom. If anyone has insight, let him calculate the number of the beast, for it is man's number. His number is 666.

Hebrew: There are six days of creation. It symbolizes meditation and intelligence.

Kabbalism: Six is creation, and beauty.

Pythagorean: Luck

Sumerian: Six days of creation

Seven, which is Farouk/Oliver/the Shadow King: In alchemy, there are 7 metals identified in the Great Work.

in Christianity, there are 7 sacraments. God created everything in 7 days (again, Farouk says they are gods). Seven is the number of Osiris, the slain and risen God of Egyptian magic, and symbolizes perfection and completion. 7 is the number denoting psychic abilities, and it's the manifestation of the true will made real.

Okay I better stop now, I sound like I'm about to sell you guys a deck of Tarot cards or bill your credit card for a psychic reading or whatever. Keep watching the set designs for geometrical pattern clues, I'm sure I missed some stuff!
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 3:35 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


yeah but according to the pixies if the devil is 6 then god is 7.
posted by JimBennett at 5:02 PM on May 21 [1 favorite]


That's really good. I was aware of the hexagons but not consciously. They're everywhere.
posted by middleclasstool at 7:55 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


More on the "David is a good guy" vs. "David is a bad guy" tailoring examples:

David is a good guy in season 1: dumpy, ill-fitting track suit which Syd also wears.

David's shirts have a lot of triangle motifs in S1.

Numerology: The symbol of 3 is the triangle. It represents the third dimension - we do things in threes so they will manifest in our physical realm.

Once David accepts that yes, he has powers and begins to exert some control over it with Melanie and Cary's help... well... he's still wearing the triangle motif shirts, but doesn't his overall tailoring look much more villainous here? More well-styled, pressed, elegant? *descent into acceptance of evil self begins, whereupon Future!Syd kidnaps nuDavid via the flying metal jail-ball*

David in Season 2, real life: rumpled shirt, oversized coat, flashback to when he was "just" a mentally ill guy trying to get better

David in Season 2, real life: his shirt/vest combo looks a lot like Cary's default outfit, sans tie. he's in "good guy" drag there.

David in Season 2, alternate reality where he stays on his meds: dumpy windbreaker, unbuttoned collar, muted earth tones.

I think he's still fighting the duality inside himself, but I'm going to keep watching for visible clues in his clothing choices.

Known characters fighting the alleged "good guys" of Division 3 and how they dress:

Farouk, Season 2: Three-piece suit, watch chain, immaculate tie/pin, I mean look at those pressed creases in his pants *fans self*

Oliver, Season 2 (former Division 3 leader): no more Nehru jackets and 70s loungewear for this guy, now he's dressing like Shadow King Farouk. Immaculate three-piece suit, fabric has a slight sheen to it.

Let's talk about Clark. He was an obvious baddie in S1, yes? But now, you could say his physical tailoring's a bit rumpled after David burned him in last year's finale. Still wearing the same suit and trying to evoke baddie vibes, but alas, the fabric's no longer shiny and is visibly wrinkled now. One foot in the good camp, the other firmly rooted in the bad.

Excited for tonight's ep!
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 9:10 AM on May 22 [2 favorites]


You brought up Cary, who I'm realizing sort of subverts the evil tailoring idea. No suits, but dude is always very well dressed and his clothes fit him well. Shockingly so for the kind of nerd he is, actually, now that I think on it. Ptonomy's well-dressed too, but his outfits are more casual-ish (striped fabrics, not shiny suit material, the cap, sometimes a sweater). And maybe that lean towards being a nudge less formal is the distinction. His jackets are more casual, Cary's in shirtsleeves.

Even where it isn't subtextual, I really like this show's attention to aesthetics. The outfits are great (I even love the track suits), but most importantly they help with world building. This is clearly not our world, and I think the sets and costumes are chosen to give us that feeling.

I want sunglasses like Farouk's. I wouldn't mind one of those suits, either, though I have occasion to wear a suit maybe twice a year.
posted by middleclasstool at 11:08 AM on May 22 [1 favorite]


The thought just occurred to me, we saw one of the idea-monsters in David’s head when he and Sid got together this season, and he didn’t kill that one yet. So he’s still got one in his head and I wonder if that’s the end of the world.
posted by LizBoBiz at 12:08 AM on May 23 [1 favorite]


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