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Legion - Chapter 7 - Review: "I'm Coming For You Baby" + POLL

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Chapter 7 was written by Jennifer Yale and directed by Dennie Gordon. Filled with some poetic visuals, imagery, and originality, Chapter 7 is yet another flawless installment in FX and Marvel's champion, Legion. This episode, like many before it make me so happy because of it's adventurous nature. It's one of the most groundbreaking comic book television shows on right now, none with have the courage to have a silent film scene let alone scenes with no sound at all. It invigorates my love for TV, if you watch a lot of programming eventually a lot become quite similar, the really diverge visually, narratively and tonally so when something so unique comes along, it's hard to not be in awe of it. Also, Aubrey Plaza continues to give one hell of a performance, those 44+ minutes flew by so fast, I wanted more.

Kerry's cries open the episode. Her desperation, isolation and fear echo throughout. The theme of fear continues to build through the use of infrequent flashes of red lights, score and Lenny's eyes appearing in the hallway, showing an omnipotent presence. The Eye's nonchalant whistling is heard as he stalks Kerry around the halls of Clockworks. His joy and her fear contrast one another in this eerie opening scene highlighting strong acting from Amber Midthunder.

The title card showcasing the same zombie-like people who chased Kerry around coming towards the screen that then transitioned into an eyeball was such an inventive visual cue to the next scene. From an eyeball spinning on an axis, it becomes an actual globe rotating as the scene expands out into a wide shot showing the Devil with Yellow Eyes spin it in a sort of Rumplestilskin way, only instead of gold, he's spinning his prisoners mad. Plus, there was a quick easter egg of an X-Men logo wheelchair, anyone picks up on that, it was featured in the transition. So nice to see our familiar Amy back though not in the circumstances she's in. She only awakens with the touch of the devil, such an adjustment to reality is seen a shock overcomes her. The room they were situated in, the way the world map on the globe appeared to be mirroring the walls was fascinating, this way he's got his on everything and everyone regardless of spatial variation.

"Looks like one of the animals is out of its pen."

It was sort of an odd reunion, mostly because of Oliver's memory absences and strange questions but it was quite nice to see Cary have his old friend back. I'm fond of that quirky personality Oliver has, that which Jemaine Clement showcases perfectly. It does make me intrigued to see future Melanie/Oliver scenes because of the interesting dynamic. She's somewhat the opposite of him, at least from what we've seen so far, very parental, though the circumstances she's in may have made her inhabit that role. However, once she lets her hair down, which she's been doing, maybe we'll find out they have some similarities but I'm certain he made her smile.

"That's not very interesting. I thought we were literally saving daylight."

Oliver's omnipotence in the Astral Plane definitely came in handy, his much-needed confirmations about David's parasite were welcomed. I found Cary's finishing of Oliver's sentences to be sweet, regardless of time, Cary interacted with his old friend like none had passed at all. That idea that friendship transcends time and space, that if you're comfortable with someone that you'd be your most strangest with is a beautiful phenomena.

"He didn’t think to watch his sex."

In the first 6 minutes, we got our official confirmation that "the monster", like many guessed is The Shadow King otherwise known as Amahl Farouk. For those of us who stayed along for the ride, Noah Hawley did promise things would become clearer as the season unfolded and it's very evident it has.

"It disguised himself as a dog, a cute beagle."

Oliver explaining to Cary what David's current state was and that being visually expressed on the wall of his house was neat. He had a sort of looking glass into reality and the projected in the same way Farouk did, especially in the style it's shown in. Ha, at Jules Verne, Oliver's good, very upstanding friend.As I suspected they teamed up to help their friends out.

"He's too powerful for me, Farouk. He's too virile"

After that preface of how Cary and Oliver's reunion lead to Cary saving Syd from her slumber played out. Cary leads Syd out of the bedroom for an unfiltered chat, in a chamber encompass by white. It's small space and surroundings evoked a sense of freedom yet clinical isolation that created a unique visual. Cary tried to fill Syd in on his findings from Oliver but she was already up to speed and in a sort of role reversal, she was finishing his sentences which were fun. Rachel Keller's delivery of lines during this scene was very well executed, I particularly loved, "you fix it so I'm not murdered when I wake up". Cary also hands her some special glasses and reassures her that Oliver has control over this space, "they'll show you what's really here".

"It was a mental projection created by the monster, I’ve been paying attention." - Seems like isolation with the mind does wonders, not just for David.

Upon the end of that conversation, Syd steps out of the chamber and into mentally projected Clockworks. From the visuals of the red zombie-like fantasy, the application of glasses diluted the falseness infesting the trapped inhabits perception/mind giving Syd safer passage. We are presented with a calm black and white perspective that I've not seen very often, something so rare on TV, the visual alone just made everything more intriguing. It shows how color creates reaction, we see red and we associate that with multiple feelings and therefore react accordingly yet in black and white, such constructions are largely absent.

"He's locked away in a tiny corner of his mind" and with time "the Shadow King will become David."

"I'm coming for you baby" - I admire this response, regardless of its gender connotations (often associated with a male character on his way to save his girl), it shows just how awesome Syd is. Her entire characterization has been one of my favorite aspects of the show of which Rachel Keller has made that much more amazing. Moving on, Syd makes her determined exit out of the main room/medication stall area and this wonderful transition plays out. The camera moves to the ground, towards the Devil's eyes which lead the camera down a sort of chasm, it felt like falling down the Alice's Rabbit Hole, instead much more hell-like. The screams of David echoes throughout the descent. The use of imagery as you fall features several of the Devil with Yellow Eyes' mouth, somewhat conveying the idea of being eaten and moving into his belly. One of the most intriguing and fluidly edited scenes.

"Oliver Bird, dedicated follower of fashion."

Returning to our reality, we find Melanie where we left her last week (in David's living room with everyone frozen in time). She assumes she sees her husband when the scuba diver (as Cary) appears but once the mask is removed, it's revealed to not be her prince. More entertainingly, Oliver is already in the room but his inability to remember her is equally saddening but a bit funny. It wasn't quite the fairytale reunion I think she was hoping for but I also think she was grateful to just see him after all these years.

"You seem familiar, what did you say your name was again?"

Elsewhere in David's house, drops of blood floating upward were noticed by Melanie. Her quick reaction being captured as the camera moves briskly upstairs was great. Sadly, upon arrival, we find Rudy, our telekinetic friend, bleeding, hurt and hidden away in a closet by The Eye (who assumed his appearance). This montage of his time in faux Clockworks is crossed with black and white scenes that feature the current actions of Syd. Again, fantastically edited, I particularly liked the injection of red from Kerry as she runs into the main colorless room, shutting the door. The two distinct colors existed in this interesting state in one part of the room until Kerry placed on the glasses Syd gives her showing her it was all a conjuring.

"I'm you, your rational mind, you created me,"
"Forget the lies,"
"You know everything the monster knows."

David's entrapment in the coffin continued to shine a light on the immense talent Dan Stevens possess. The lighting conveyed the sense of isolation and tight closure. I wasn't expecting another David but it was very much welcomed. The sense of symmetry and arrangement between the two heads in this small space was pleasing. Rational David was utterly charming, his determination to help David was believable and his British accent were great (I found it funny for that quick second in the blackboard room where our David tried out a British accent and Rational David called him out). Rational David's approach to listing everything you know on a blackboard was easily one my favorite things about the episode.

"How can we be underground when were not even inside our body, so if there's no body and no ground, then there's no coffin, it's just an idea."

The stick figure animation sequence that highlighted everything David knew, his childhood, the parasite, was all executed in such a creatively engaging manner that made me smile so much! "It's been with you a long time, maybe since a… baby" - David's drawing of a baby was adorable. David's father and the monster being enemies, fighting on the Astral Plane with their minds, that depiction with such childlike sensibilities was wonderful. Hearing that upon the parasite's defeat, his mind "floated" off whilst he played the long game, taking revenge upon David from a young age, feeding on him "so that one day maybe it could get its revenge or maybe worse".

"It's a mutant like me."

Dan Stevens' dual performance in this scene is also very noteworthy, David's childlike wonder came through whilst he looked back on his past. Every single piece of dialogue that was written was delivered with depth and meaning. Rational David's determination and adamance was evident, especially as David grow closer to proper conclusions, his voice became stronger, more pronounced, a real showcase of Dan's impeccable talent, "I am pretty, I am loved". That final shot of David drawing Syd and him living happily ever after was sweet as if his life played out like a story.

"Sweetheart it's over, give me some sugar" - This was funny. I liked how he drew his father with no hair at all, very Professor X. I appreciated the overarching depiction of Farouk in his drawings too, he was sort of like the bogeyman, a truly perfect yet somewhat less villainous embodiment of The Shadow King.

“To keep me safe, I went to live with my other mom and dad”
“Until Syd came and woke me up”

"I'm going to get my body back" - I adored David's confidence as he said this, it reminds me of some dialogue Syd says, there's a strength that comes from realization and acceptance, "I was sick but I’m not sick anymore".

In our reality, Oliver lends a helping hand to our friends when they are unable to move Syd and David away from the bullet that plans to shoot them down. The following scenes in its entirety coupled with the musical score were stunning. I loved the incorporation of the silent film scenes. They play out in one of the best conveyors of a narrative I have ever seen on a comic book tv show. I loved the use of cards noting the dialogue in all its glory. Onto plot, The Eye grabbing Kerry was unexpected (yet also expected because I knew he'd come back) but really more worrisome since she lost her reality-defiant glasses due to his attack. Then we cut to Oliver as he becomes the conductor of his own orchestra, instructing words to form a barrier between the bullets and David and Syd. Jemaine Clement was at his finest throughout this. Few shows can make a scene(s) like this truly work yet Noah Hawley and his team does it with ease. This type of creativity is something few shows can comprehend yet Legion has done it for 7 consecutive episodes.

David escaping his prison was terrific, the way he runs through the maze of his mind, door after door with this determined yet maniac expression was sensational. "The monster arrives" dialogue card with Lenny appearing in the hallway of Clockworks was splendid!

"You rise when the King appears."

"You know it's been fun but you can go" - That single showcase of Farouk's power, compacting The Eye's body with just a flick of its fingers was freaking terrifying! Such a devilish act that showed of Aubrey Plaza's immense skill and range. It also conveyed that Farouk wants to be the only one calling the shots, that The Eye was being entertained at the notion they would thrive in the same environment. Aubrey's look, deranged and psychotic, the head tilt, it was just a sight to behold. Truly phenomenal work.

Once The Eye was out of the way, Syd and Kerry's shock, necks to the side expressions were like that of injured prey whilst Lenny like a spider, walked across the floor in a very insect-like motion, about to consume the prey caught in its web. The lack of dialogue made the scene that much more tense, the use of music gave the scenes coupled with David's escape a very epic, grand feeling that I adored (I need that score). It's one of my absolute favorite sequences the show has given us so far. Unfortunately, nothing was ever going to be that easy, Farouk sees through his mirror on the wall, Oliver's plan taking place to save David and Syd and thus, immediately goes to stop it.

David on the other hand, standing in a hallway, using all his might, his telepathic powers to break the shackles this reality had upon him was excellent. The use of music and lighting made the scene feel incredibly cinematic, the VFX was like that of a movie as the doors and contents of the rooms began to explode.

Post Oliver being slammed into the wall, Cary moving to put his device on David's head being done in this slow-mo nail-biting sequence really created a tense feeling. Switching back to projected reality, Farouk resuming his predator like stance but is stopped in the nick of time by our awesome telekinetic hero (who gets up out of his wheelchair) and prevents Farouk from killing the Syd and Kerry. An honorable act of selflessness. At last, upon the placing of Cary's device on David's cranium, these slow motion shots of everyone's consciousness returning back into their bodies was awesome. David's very Quicksilver moment of swinging Syd out of gun range, grabbing the bullets as it fired towards him in the palm of his hand as time starts again was so cleverly done. Fantastic editing, yet again! Also noteworthy, Amy's screaming out for David in present reality saw him raise his hand in a very mutant like manner and this purple light emits from behind him and Syd made for such a wonderful visual scene.

"You were a sunflower."

Like the end of a storybook, our heroes return to Summerland, wounded, a bit distressed yet together (thank goodness they had Rudy with them). Melanie, on the other hand, had run off hoping her beloved husband would also have returned from battle. I felt her pain as she opened the cryogenic chamber and diving suit to find nothing. Yet not all was lost, happiness found her as she heard Oliver serving food to everyone in the cafeteria. Seeing her happy face was so rewarding, Jean Smart is magic in this role. We haven't really had any confirmation that he's here to stay permanently, it's not been explicitly revealed at least to my memory but it's still a heartwarming moment.

Everyone sitting down to eat was such a family moment. Amidst all their quirks, powers and differences this scene solidified a bond between them all. Yet Kerry watching them, regardless of not being one for eating, was disheartening. Her subsequent words, "I needed you and you left me", to Cary, were really pulled at my heartstrings. I hope he can make it up to her in some way, she's still quite fragile in our world. Cary is her safety blanket, she comes out and is kickass but beneath that strong exterior is someone still learning, she's still a child in that sense, she's grown up in the safety of Cary, never really seeing the cruel reality of our world. Their connection is too rare and beautiful to fracture now but I'm intrigued to see where this goes.

"Oh my god, I have to call Ben."

Amy and David's proper reunion, finally, was satisfying. Amy mentioned e-mail! Yet another hint at the time the show takes place in. I was in awe of the room they were in, that overhead shot of the single tree like an island placed in this circular-like room with large circular stones surrounding it just really stood out to me. Not everyone has an eye for set design or details like these but I notice. I appreciate the time it takes to show individuality like Legion does. Just when you think everything is good, a glimpse of the Angriest Boy is seen by David whilst he talks to Amy. The monster won't be trapped and this was his way of showing David that.

If the Angriest Boy's appearance wasn't enough, it seems another battle is just about to begin. Hamish Linklater's Division 3 Interrogator returns with "3rd-degree" burns announcing to the soldiers to "kill the others". If things can't worse, we fall down the rabbit hole once more, this time as we descend in the mouth of The Shadow King, it's him who's trapped, glitching between all his forms as he screams. From his screams, he cracks open a piece of his prison. What a diabolical smile to end the episode on.

I cannot praise the creativity in this episode more than I have. Please take to the comments to share your thoughts, appreciation or anything else you'd like to share. The sheer depiction of the narrative in such nonconforming ways is what makes this show stand out in such a crowded and occasionally lackluster superhero landscape. The editing, simply one of the best features about the show, it’s slick and breathtaking, few superhero movies even have that. A big round of applause to the entire team of Legion for creating one of my favorite episodes. Some really magnificent moments have been given life through this episode. Don't forget, the season finale of Legion, Chapter 8 airs next Wednesday at 10 PM on FX and Thursday on FOX International. I'm sure it'll be nothing short of extraordinary and thankfully we already have Season 2 to look forward to.

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