Legion (TV Series 2017– ) Poster

(2017– )

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Not your average superhero
gogoschka-112 February 2017
*** some mild spoilers ahead ***

"What is your name?" Jesus asked.

"My name is Legion," he replied, "for we are many." (Mark 5:9)

I hope you'll forgive me for starting this review by citing this (rather obvious) excerpt from the bible, but I just couldn't resist. Apart from these opening lines, I'll try to avoid any spoilers for the show, so you won't read anything specific about the storyline here. As with all my reviews, this is supposed to give you an overall impression of the show without giving away any details regarding the plot.

For those among you who, like me, love some of the slightly weirder superheroes out there (especially of the mutant kind and preferably in the X-Men universe) but feel most of those guys' screen outings so far were either constricted by the 2-hour format or held back by the need to appeal to mainstream audiences, I'm happy to report there is finally a full length TV-show that dares to fully embrace the craziness of its source material without taking any prisoners. The show's name is 'Legion' (and I'm already pretty sure its fans will be many), and compared to its central character David Haller, even Deadpool looks almost sane.

Following the storyline may seem a little difficult (at least at the beginning) for 'Legion' plunges us head first into the confused mind of its hero, and the narrative is - deliberately - often just as fractured as David Haller's personality. Right from the start this show makes it very clear how committed it is to convey its protagonist's unstable state of mind - and boy does it succeed: through David's eyes we experience an often terrifying (albeit colorful) world where we can never be sure what's real and what's imagined; nor can we get a grasp on where we are, when we are, or even WHO we are.

But this trip down the rabbit hole is well worth taking (even if it does turn into a horror trip at times) for it's a psychedelic ride that has been designed by very talented people. Creator Noah Hawley, who has already given us the excellent show 'Fargo', obviously knows what he's doing, and watching the show feels like listening to a perfectly composed concept album from a seventies rock band (btw, watch out for a cool Pink Floyd reference). The cast is terrific (especially Dan Stevens as David Haller); the visuals and the production design are a wonderfully weird mix of retro and modern elements which fits David's distorted perception of time and reality like a glove, and the mystery surrounding David as he desperately tries to cut through the haze and figure out what's going on will keep you glued to the screen throughout.

Insanity is a tricky subject to tackle, and the possible pitfalls are many; present it with too much levity and you risk the accusation that you're making fun of people with a terrible illness - yet if you portray it as tragic and bleak as it often is (I am saying that as someone who has a family member who suffers from schizophrenia) you will lose your audience. So to find the right tone here was not an easy thing to do, but I believe the show - just as Marvel did in the comic books - does an outstanding job at never coming across disrespectful while still offering fantastic entertainment.

So to sum up my first impression: 'Legion' represents a refreshingly different side of Marvel (compared to the films and shows based on Marvel Comics' more "grounded" creations that we've seen so far) and by fully embracing the source material's "weirdness" the show is a testament to just how insanely (in the true sense of the word) inventive and versatile Stan Lee and his band of brothers were/are. This show is wilder, more surreal and generally much, much crazier than your average superhero story and there are moments where you feel reminded of the works of David Fincher, Charlie Kaufman or even David Lynch. I'd highly recommend it especially to adult comic book fans and those among you who don't demand everything be explained within the first episode. Personally, I feel this is Marvel at its best and most complex: 9 stars out of 10.

Favorite TV-Shows reviewed: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls075552387/

Favorite films: http://www.IMDb.com/list/mkjOKvqlSBs/

Lesser-Known Masterpieces: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls070242495/

Favorite Low-Budget and B-Movies: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054808375/
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A grand adventure
Pelle K4 March 2017
I'm giving this show ten out of ten because i'm genuinely thrilled every time i see a new episode. You *never* know whats gonna happen and the show keeps f*cking with your mind just enough to keep everything interesting but giving you exactly what you need to keep on waiting for more. Also, it's a freaking beautiful. I could watch it just because it's so perfectly shot. I get that everyone is not gonna like this, but for me this is pure bliss. Every time.
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This is what great TV programming is!
G Martin2 March 2017
This is a very different show. It's unique, well acted and the pacing is great. The writing and story development is intelligent and sophisticated. You're not spoon fed, but required to think about what plays out and motivated to discover the depths of the characters. A fun ride and worth the watch! Wish there was more quality programming like this.
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I'm now beginning to question my own sanity!
itschris-4846216 March 2017
This show is absolute brilliance, the creators should be proud.

It's fresh, fun and so on the edge of "what the heck is going on?" yet I don't get completely lost, a feat not easy to pull off in film i'm sure.

The layers, the sets, the music, the acting, the craziness, brilliant! Please don't let this show stop Well done all involved
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nhoven9 March 2017
If you are wondering whether or not to start watching, DO! Don't listen to these rands who reviewed this terribly because of substance, Carnivàleness (wha?) and plot. They don't understand what is happening, and they don't like it so they are venting their frustrations. Watch the first episode, and if you love not knowing what is happening, and what will happen next, you are in for the best TV series out right now!
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Tip of The Iceberg
graham022723 March 2017
No spoilers. No plot points. You do not need them in a review of this show. Watch it and feel the performances.

Dan Stevens is a force of nature, in this story he literally is & his screen presence is a growing maelstrom. I first knowingly crossed his path in The Guest & have not looked back since (comparable with Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe). The story is vague & intriguing from the beginning with growing enchantment as the episodes stack-up.

Sure. I'm a comic book geek from the 1980's, but Noah Hawley seems like he has more than his ducks in a row for this project. As SONY/Fox has often mis-stepped with the X- Men and its creative use of characters and story lines, LEGION seems to be avoiding the potholes, while creating a new amalgam of story from the past to forging ahead with a cohesive story.

Aubrey Plaza's performance is delightfully off-beat and maniacal.

I could list the positives for every actor and their character, literally the casting (and execution) seems perfect at this point (through episode seven).

Love it!
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Started off really good, but....
mike_brunton28 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I really enjoyed the first few episodes of Legion. Interesting story, a mutant with incredible powers, rescued by other mutants, etc. But I have to say after watching episode 6, I was beginning to become irritated. We had at least 40 minutes of the episode inside the characters mind again, focused on the mental hospital again, knowing this isn't the real word again, etc. The dream sequences and flashbacks and psychological hocus pocus just were not satisfying me at all. I wanted to get back to the real world, the real story and find out what had happened in the characters old childhood house. It is a shame really, as I was enjoying this series, but if this continues I will have to bow out gracefully. Sometimes, I think scriptwriters get too caught up in their own imagining and think what is clever or interesting for them is going to engage the viewer. We already had almost an entire episode with the character in his Astral Plane, meeting up with the head mutants husband who for some reason had lived there for 20 or so years, and this episode was stroppy and distracting enough. To be honest I don't know whether I will finish episode 6 and go on to episode 7, and hope this sort of dream sequence episodes aren't going to ruin the series altogether for me. I changed my rating to 5 out of 10, and have decided to leave the series for good after reading some other reviews. I agree with the negatives, Jessica Jones and Daredevil are super examples of how to do Super hero shows. I love both of them. Upon thinking more deeply, I agree with others, 6 episodes in, I was actually caring less and less for all main characters, seriously, anybody who really enjoyed episode 6 of season one should have their brain checked, it was boring, it was pretentious, it added nothing to the story, I couldn't care how some Mum's died. I couldn't care they were back in the mental hospital again. As a person diagnosed with schizophrenia and has been in a mental hospital it was just an insult. I seriously urge potential viewers to avoid this series. It will leave you frustrated and just wishing the story would stick to the main plot - and that is the whole point. What on earth was the main plot ? Getting rid of the devil with yellow eyes ? Beating the evil government employees who wanted to enslave mutants ? Saving the Dr's husband from another 25 years in the Astral Plane ? Deciding whether the main hero was schizophrenic ? I could go on and on. I only started watching this series due to the high ratings, and clearly there is a fan base out there, but I honestly do see why this deserves to have a second season.
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Yes it's a mind bender but it does it well.
Showluv26 March 2017
Okay, yes it's a complete mind f**** , bending the threshold of reality!! Lol. But, I think that's the point. Unlike many TV series if you watch the whole season in a day don't be surprised if you check yourself in on the 7th floor of the nearest psychiatric clinic. If you've seen the Mirror series on Netflix you know what I'm talking about.

Here's the gists: This a show is coming from the point of view of a schizophrenic world. Yes, there are points where scenes could use more dialogue (hence my 9/10 rating) but, it does attempt to fill in the gaps in a old fashioned original Marvel comic book way.

The creators and actors alike did a very good job in combining two worlds, well perhaps technically three (reality, illusion, and comic book superhero); yes that's how complex Legion mind warp is. So,no,it's doesn't keep the viewer in the loop, but why should it? The point is to make the viewer pay attention to EVERYTHING in order to understand what's happening. Not all silence means empty. So, my advice is if your content in sitting and having every detail of the scene told to you ( first and second, then third...), this may not be for you. If you like Sci-Fi and want to be challenged then Legion just might do that. The concept is far beyond typical TV.

In my opinion, each character was brilliantly selected to cast this type of production with the high expectations of mainstream TV. This is not a slow paced physiological thriller. After a few episodes of introduction to wrap your mind around the concept. Then, scenes move quickly but the mind f*** doesn't stop, it just gets twisted in a downward spiral like a long drunken night; and some of it is just like a nightmare. If your into Legion, eventually it will challenge your mental capabilities to figure out what's happening, what's real, who are the antagonist and protagonists and why. Again, bringing you into a schizophrenic mind, point of view; the hardship of determining illusion vs what's real.

If you watch it for none of the above interests, I urge you to watch it because it does a great job in shedding a bit of light to those who don't understand schizophrenia and what happens when two schizophrenic people are in a relationship and/or friends and the world they share. Open your mind.
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A total mess and complete disappointment
Leon Smoothy9 February 2017
Being a hard core Marvel-fan I had high hopes for this first episode, but it turned out to be out to be a complete mess. I get what the director/writer tries to produce here; a psychedelic, dreamlike nightmare description of a mutant not aware of his powers. It could have been excellent, but after the first episode I was so disappointed I just wanted to stop watching at halftime. It tries so hard to jump between dream- sequences, chock effects, different settings in an epileptic-attack causing (I'm not kidding here) blur of flickering, weird colour schemes and a constant change between slow-mo and fast-forward scenes for one hour I just felt a combination of boredom and nausea at the end. It tries so hard to be "arty" and, I suppose "ground breaking", trying to be Kubrick/Winding-Refvn/von Trier-strange and "mind blowing" (three excellent directors btw), but falling so completely flat it's embarrassing. I just can't comprehend all the 10-ratings it's gotten here...I love quirky, different, ground breaking, daring series/films, but this just seems like a drab film student project with unlimited funds gone completely haywire.
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So boring.
Ann Markova9 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
This show became the first huge disappointment of the year.

I don't really understand how they could have done it, the first episode was quite solid, intriguing and promising. But then there were just boring long paced hollow scenes, with simple empty dialogues, cardboard characters (in absolutely tiresome way). And now, after the 5th episode, which was possible to watch only with 2x speed, I can officially say that I can't go on with this thing.

And you know, I'm not the person who's bored because there is no action, explosions and special affects. (Let's just forget about all this unnecessary for a superhero novels stuff.) I can really enjoy some slow paced dramas, but only when there is something (anything) deep and multi-dimensional going on, like some personal development or contradictions not boring to look at. But here... You can call it a phenomenon, but they have it all there, on paper, in the scenario: split personality disorder, multi layers of reality, love story with problems, kidnapping, mixed childhood memories. But OMG how it turned out absolutely one-layered on the screen. I can't remember when I cared less about characters, and felt so sleepy during their long dialogues about David, just waiting and waiting for the same feelings that I had with the first episode.

No mystery, no action, no integrity, just some weird trip into nothing with expectations.
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Pretentious and tiresome
onefreakinword9 March 2017
This show makes me tired and irritated. The lead character is annoying. The plot--well, there doesn't seem to be one. I tried to make it through the third episode, after slogging through the first two, but when I found myself wanting to fast forward just to get to the end and get it over with, I realized I had to turn it off. I just can't get into such self-consciously pretentious twaddle.
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Much style, little substance
grantss24 February 2017
David Haller is a patient in a mental hospital. He has been there for several years now and life is pretty much uneventful. Then one day a new patient, beautiful Syd, arrives and he is immediately smitten by her. Little does he realise how his life is about to be turned upside and he discover special powers that he never knew he had.

Initially, quite intriguing. The first episode was just coherent enough and yet complex enough to hook me in and make me think that this series could be a clever, engaging drama. I didn't care at all about the comic book side of things and in fact hoped it wouldn't degenerate into a typical superhero series.

My other worry was that it would degenerate into mindgames for the sake of mindgames. Unfortunately, that's the path creator Noah Hawley took.

Three episodes in and things are still as clear as mud. There doesn't seem any attempt to actually clarify anything, as the writers just keep loading on layer after layer of complexity and inanity, just because they can and so the director can show off his CGI skills.

So, as far as plot goes, there really isn't one at the moment. Okay, so maybe it is a character-driven drama? Well, no. David Haller is a fairly irritating character, not helped by an unconvincing performance by Dan Stevens, complete with annoying fake American accent. So engagement is minimal to non-existent.

Don't believe the hype. Save yourself some time and avoid this series.
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A very bizarre montage of abstract visual psychological babble
kierranambrose6 May 2017
I'll keep this short and sweet.

After reading the reviews and seeing the 8.6 rating I thought I was going to be in for a treat with this show! Disappointingly I can only describe it as a complete and utter mess.

Not sure how I made it to the end.
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Existential Headache Provoking Weirdness
chunter764224 March 2017
Just like every other FX fan I really REALLY wanted to like this show. But 3 episodes in and all I have from Legion is a headache! Don't get me wrong, I like weird offbeat things in general but this show tries way too hard to be weird and just ends up being totally stupid instead of thought provoking. Plus with all this weirdness that Legion buries itself in does very little to move the story forward. So you end up at the end of each episode asking did ANYTHING worthwhile even happen during this hour? There are ways to do weird where it's good…e.g.Twin Peaks, Lost, Mr. Robot etc…But Legion just misses the mark. I really hope they try to make some adjustments in the show if there is another season because the concept and characters are good, the show just needs to pivot and change direction to make it a really good show. I admire Noah Hawley for trying something different but it is just way tooooo much weirdness as it is.
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Have a high threshold of boredom? You're in luck--this show's for you!
hitch-343 March 2017
And yet another show that makes me wonder what all the other reviewers watched, those who raved about it. I was really waiting for this, and despite plowing through not one, not two, not three, but nearly four entire episodes, I finally gave up. Watching the same scenes, over and over and over...nyeh. Not for me. I understand the plot line; (despite the rather condescending reviewer here that said that those who didn't like the show probably didn't understand it....) I'm just utterly un-entertained by the way the premise is presented.


Yup, I get it. The hero thought he was nuts, but he's not. He's a massively powerful mutant with a boatload of personalities, and apparently, each one has a different power or powers. Yawn. Problem is, I've been so deliberately bored by the idiocy of TPTB that created this P.O.S., I no longer CARE if he can move things with his mind, or his d**k. The whole "oh, his mind won't allow us to see..." yeah, great. Not four bloody episodes worth of great.

It's a little bit like...like, David Lynch decided to do a bad Fellini impression, and this is it. Quick cuts to scenes that make no sense, or worse, no difference; watching the same scene over again, from a different viewpoint (which gives you...NOTHING!); the constant, and I mean, CONSTANT drumbeat by the adults in the show that "he's the most powerful mutant we've ever SEEN!," and so on...maybe if you're wildly enamored of his comics, then Legion will entertain you. Or, you already love the character, in the comics, so you'll watch this incredibly tedious origin story...dunno. But me?

Nope, I'm off to plant grass in a little plastic bowl for my cats. Then I'll sit around and watch it grow. THAT will be more intriguing and interesting than this show, sad to say.
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What a mess!
Chris Schembri21 June 2017
I could only get as far as episode seven and gave up. This show is a complete mess! I'm not sure what it's trying to be, but it's trying really hard at something, and failing miserably. Character traits are inconsistent, the acting is hammy, the story is silly and goes nowhere. They've used every trick possible to create atmosphere and it doesn't work. It's obvious and overwrought. A couple of episodes go off into some poorly executed surreal scenario that just drags on and on. It really feels as if they're padding the story (whatever that is!) out. If you're going to halt the (already slow) story for a couple of episodes of nonsense, at least be visually stunning or groundbreaking or something. Nope! No more of that, thank you. I'd rather watch grass grow.
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Overrated Dull Fest - Legion of Doom
pedro_m1113 March 2017
5 episodes of disappointment, bad story, bad characters, bad execution. The Pilot fooled me into thinking that this could have been a show in the waits of "Mr. Robot" with a mix of "X-Men". I been never so wrong in all my TV life. I kept saying that in the next episode the action will begin, but don't. Legion, is so dull, so boring, nothing important happens and you're constantly reminded that David is schizophrenic, and that he is very powerful, but you're never shown of this in a interesting way. All of this seems so fake and unreal. I'm giving up!!! I give one point because of the sequence with the song from Radiohead, and that's all...
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Again, a nice try.
B1 March 2017
I've seen this mistake happen so many times before. They try to keep the story- line "mysterious", but have no clue in what direction to go. When the Pilot-Episode has plot holes in it, even before the plot would start to develop you know you've made a bad choice.

Series like "Lost" & "The OA" have made us very aware of these trends. Now I think most people can detect a plot less series from the pilot. This series does exactly that. It has no way of even giving an inch of what the plot is supposed to be. Beside that, it also has some contradictory scenes the writer won't be able to explain. So why bother? Also, 1+ hour for an episode is too long. Like many other series the story is written for 30 min. video. Yet it seems to be a new trend to not have series below 45min. anymore.

I advice to stop watching or not even watch the series at all. My 1 point is for the people working at their CGI department. They are the only positive thing about the series.
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Super surprised by the rating
Ida Gul4 March 2017
I watched the first ep and tried watching ep 2 after 4 episodes are out. As you can tell I was not raring to watch it. I'm a fan of superhero shows and movies, Agents of Shield was good, Heroes was good then not good. You may be a super fan but it doesn't mean you don't care for quality.

This show has ZERO quality. I actually have a physical reaction from watching the show. I had a headache, my stress level went up a notch and I felt intense nausea! The weirdness of inter-splicing scenes, jumping from one time-line to another without any explanation, mixing his visions and experiences with our viewing, toggling reality and dreams. It is one piece of garbling garbage.

Nothing make sense, and I watch shows to relax and be entertaining and not to use my brain extensively. Sure it's required to be somewhat intelligent, I don't need spelling out. But why do I even to figure what is real and what is not. My time is not worth this show. Psychedelic do not belong on TV. You can do that on your own time with your own choice of ingredients. At least not for me.

Yes I gave up ep 2 after 10 mins, and will not be watching anymore.
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A brilliant show for the intelligent ones!
zurezu9 March 2017
I am a guy who likes to watch shows which do not repeat itself without being boring. Legion is a show which has blown my mind. I understand this show is not for everyone. It takes effort to understand the show. But whoever has watched "Inception" and liked it , would like the show. This show should be categorized as 'psychological horror'. This is not a superhero show. The cinematographic is 10/10. The editing and direction is 10/10. The story telling is 9/10 . The acting is 10/10.

After 'Westworld', this is the second show to get my 9/10 rating. Do watch it. The first episode is slow. But the rest of them are amazing.
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Legion Should be Appreciated For the Different and Mind-Bending Changeup it Brings to the Genre
CANpatbuck366425 July 2017
*Minor Spoilers Ahead* Legion centres around David (Dan Stevens) as he's trying to deal with reality in a mental hospital. David has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and his life has been centred around his inability to cope with reality. His best friend Lenny (Aubrey Plaza) is in the hospital with him and their friendship is his escape. Things change though when the beautiful Syd Barrett (Rachel Keller) arrives. David is instantly smitten with her and they begin to see each other. Syd's affliction is that she cannot stand to be touched in anyway. Time passes and Syd is far enough along that she's being released. When she's about to leave, David sneaks a kiss in and all of a sudden there's a big destructive event. David's having trouble remembering what happened and in the pilot episode, we join him as he's being interrogated by Clark (Hamish Linklater).

The complaint with Marvel superhero properties is that they all follow a similar formula (I'm not among that camp but I get the criticism). So it becomes that more important to support projects that try to play with that formula. Legion isn't conventional in any sense and I think that's the best thing about it. We have a main character that is sporadic and hard to follow, they throw in beautiful and expensive visual effects to help sell the confusion around what's going on and how high the stakes are. The mutants they introduce are a nice mix of recognizable abilities but they also have characters that bend expectations with what they can do with their power sets. These are some of things that help Legion separate from the pack of Marvel and DC properties.

Legion can be a bit of an acquired taste. Some people have complained that it can be hard to keep up with. Legion has a non-linear story and the various dream sequences which can be confusing. This is a fair point and you won't get this show if you're only watching it out of the corner of your eye. I didn't have that problem though and the crazy approach added to the intrigue around the characters and the progression of the plot.

I've seen some of these actors/actresses in other projects but they collectively did great work across the board. Dan Stevens was pitch-perfect as David. David's a difficult protagonist to begin with but Dan hurdles those difficulties and delivers a magnetic performance. Rachel Keller reminds me of Brie Larson but in a good way. She works well with Dan and she makes for a solid supporting character. I was pretty blown away by Aubrey Plaza as Lenny. She's always been funny but she kicked it up a notch, she's genuinely creepy and gives a well rounded performance. Bill Irwin, Jeremie Harris, Amber Midthunder and Jean Smart round out the rest of the regular players and they all are effective in their respective parts. I wasn't a big fan of Jermaine Clement when I first saw him but I'm warming up to him the more I see him in different things. He's interesting as Oliver and I liked his acting choices in this.

I like superhero shows and movies as much as the next guy but you can't really get around how saturated the movie/TV market is getting. Everyone is cashing in and I'm getting worried that we're going to hit the breaking point soon. That's why I'm all the more eager to praise Legion for delivering something off the beaten path. Legion's frantic storytelling livens things up and when you combine the insane visual sensibility and some pretty solid acting, it makes one hell of a cocktail. If you want something more offbeat when it comes to heroes battling super-villains, I can't recommend Legion highly enough.
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Boring boring boring.
vonronge16 March 2017
All the other reviews must be by people employed on the show. I stuck it out to episode 6, because I love this character, but holy hell. Bland, semi-conscious characters. The girlfriend is just awful after episode 1. Whole episodes where nothing happens. It feels like the whole thing is on an SSRI. Who the hell is writing this pile of horse manure? The director is a moron.
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X-Men Meets Kubrick
Clovis Spencer17 February 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The critics apparently loved this show, but I found its entertainment value quite elusive. The creator Noah Hawley seemed to be channeling Stanley Kubrick. The bizarre plot of a telepath/telekinetic being held captive by representatives of an oppressive police state in what appears to be a mental hospital seemed to evoke comparisons to "A Clockwork Orange" and "The Shining." The surreal experiences of Legion are like someone on acid. Time is irrelevant and the viewer doesn't know if the experiences of the character are real or just his imagination. Dan Stevens is a very good actor in the title role, but as for the character himself, I don't find him appealing enough to follow his exploits, if he ever has any.
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yulee13 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
I only watched the pilot episode, sadly without first checking more in depth what to expect. The premise of a mental patient with superpowers sounded like something I might want to see.

Aren't the pilots supposed to lure you in? This one was exceptionally hard to watch. It felt even longer than it was, even though it was full of action, camera tricks, flashbacks, you name it.

First of all, I don't think it was a realistic portrayal of paranoid schizophrenia. It definitely isn't so exciting and full of action all the time, and you get really exhausted, especially on medication. The lead character was wholly unconvincing as a patient. I absolutely hated the dancing flashbacks/dreams, I don't think they contributed anything to the story or the character, they were just a filler, and a way too long one.

And while I still had some hope left until they saved David from the pool, it was all gone in the last few minutes. It wasn't a start to a new chapter, it felt more like a closure to me. I don't think I would watch another episode afterwards, even if this one hadn't left a bitter taste in my mouth. The semi-interesting part was over for me.

Maybe I'm just too old for superhero movies, I never get the plot holes in them (I'm way older than 12). Like, why do superheroes have to walk when they could teleport themselves with telekinesis? Why do they use outdated guns when they can crush whole armies with their will?

And lastly, it shows that it doesn't have a budget for a movie, some cgi parts were blatantly obvious, it would have been better to simply leave them out.
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