We puzzle through more of the indecipherable, reacquainting ourselves with the expanse of David Haller’s mind.
Last year, in a time before mergers, Fox had a pretty good run when it came to their X-Men slate. Logan — the western that ended up being a perfect send-off to both Wolverine and Professor X — went on to receive a ton of awards buzz and landed a coveted Best Adapted Screenplay nomination at the Oscars. Meanwhile on TV, The Gifted began examining the fate of a family surprised by the burgeoning mutation in their children, and Legion started exploring the beginnings of another thread in Charles Xavier’s life: his son, David Haller (Dan Stevens).
Season 1 of Legion earned the show rave reviews — we at FSR love it — and created what seems like a new gold standard for superhero television shows. If there has ever been a tried-and-true method to nailing superhero stuff, it has always been to focus on creating engaging visual worlds and characters that introduce something different and/or bizarre. Legion‘s Season 2 trailer has just dropped, confirming that both of those factors are still very much present as the show takes a dive into the weird and wondrous. Watch it below.
The trailer is as dynamic as one would expect from another one of Noah Hawley‘s (Fargo) creations. Each scene floods our senses with the stunning visual impact of every setting, as well as several perfectly balanced shots of Stevens looking both troubled and cocky. Amahl Farouk / The Shadow King (Navid Negahban) makes an appearance and teases a personal dilemma for David related to his love interest, Syd Barrett (Rachel Keller). The trailer is actually rather light on plot details, only hinting at rather generic allusions to “the end of everything,” which is a conundrum that many other superhero properties have to tackle on a regular basis. But what made Legion special in Season 1 continues to shine through in the new footage.
The X-Men franchise may have spent years getting us acquainted with Professor X’s powers through his political convictions. However, we never really got a look into the recesses of his mind except in snippets hinted at through the depiction of the computer Cerebro in the movies. The personification of utter strangeness that comes with navigating David’s extraordinary abilities has proven to serve Legion well. The show took some time to “reveal” David’s connection to Professor X, but regardless, it warped reality — physical, mental and everything in between and surrounding those categories — to the limit.
Stevens has since addressed David and Professor X’s relationship further, saying that although it’ll take some time for any concrete portrayal of the latter to appear in Legion, “it’s always there.” To be honest, the show being as convoluted as it has to be, Professor X could appear in any incarnation (Patrick Stewart, James McAvoy, or a new casting) and Hawley and team could find a way to make it work.
According to Stevens (per Geek Tyrant):
“It’s always plaguing him or ringing bells in the background of whatever is going on. It’s less at the forefront of his mind, at the beginning of this season, but it definitely comes into play, as we move on, as it does naturally for people who discover that they are adopted. It’s an intriguing prospect, I’ll say that.”
If Season 1 was any indication, Legion shouldn’t really need a Professor X appearance to be captivating. It’s actually kind of nice that — as it is with Marvel’s Netflix shows — the film characters are only tangentially linked to the universe of their television counterparts. In David, the show has delivered a protagonist who the audience can barely trust, but that’s alright because the ride feels like one extended lucid dream. This sets Legion apart, and we can’t wait for it to return to the small screen.