Legion S1E3 “Chapter 3”

*Spoilers Ahead*

As we rapidly approach the halfway point of this season, David and everyone else associated with him are just beginning to realize how powerful our protagonist really is. He’s more than just a telepath and telekinetic, he’s something else entirely. Melanie Bird has been trying to crack into David’s mind almost since they met but what lies in wait inside of his brain might be better left unlocked.

One of the most fascinating things Legion gets across this week is the idea that the true villain of this story might be David’s own mind. As we continue to explore David’s mind we continue to discover just how deep the trauma in him runs, Melanie was wrong when she suggested that it was David’s power leading him to think he was insane. He is mentally unwell in a way that doesn’t immediately manifest itself and that poses problems with a man as powerful as David and that truth of David’s mental health seems to be dawning on Melanie too.

The scene where David is being taunted by the ghost of Lenny is a perfect example of David’s struggle with his own thoughts. Lenny mocks David and plants doubts in his head about Melanie and the whole operation she runs, she preys on David’s fear of what is happening to his sister to try and get a response and we get a pretty big one.

David shows off a new power by showing up in the room where his sister is being questioned as a ethereal being, taking Syd along with him, only to teleport out just as The Eye sees him. Syd is impressed with David’s power echoing Melanie’s earlier statements of what he would be capable of if he had control but that control is far from David’s grasp.

The episode manages to continue to build tension from the glimpses of the Devil with the Yellow Eyes and that tension turns into dread as the last third of this episode plays like a horror film inside David’s head. We still have seen very little of the Devil up close but his presence is felt in everything going on in David’s mind as he stalks through the halls of David’s childhood home and creeps up behind Melanie just before she awakens.

There’s been a lot of talk about what exactly the Devil is and it seems clear, at least as clear as it can be on this show, that the Devil is a part of David’s psyche, something keeping him and others from uncovering deep-rooted trauma. The question is, if David can actually alter reality, as he appears to be able to, what happens if the Devil in his head comes into the world?

It’s a question that I’m sure we’ll get an answer to soon but for now I’m content to continue exploring the deep recesses of David’s mind and as long as the show makes it as compelling as this hour was I have no reason to want anything different.

Bits ‘n Pieces

  • I love the little bits of weirdness that get thrown in this show like Jermaine Clement voicing the coffee machine and security system in Melanie’s compound.
  • It makes more sense later when we find out that it was the voice of her husband, that little bit of backstory was helpful in giving us some understanding for Melanie’s reasons for her actions.
  • “That bitch’s secrets have secrets.” This is the requisite moment where I once again praise Aubrey Plaza for doing some fantastic work.
  • It is interesting to note that Melanie and Ptonomy are unable to see the Devil but Syd was. I wonder if that has to do with temporarily being in David’s body?

Jesse Swanson is a would-be writer, podcaster and funny guy who covers TV shows of all shapes and sizes. You can find him on Twitter @JesseSwanson