Legion Season 1 Episode 1 First Impressions

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Summary: A troubled young man battling mental illness wonders if the visions he experiences are real following a strange encounter with a fellow patient.

Director: Noah Hawley (for this episode)

Writers: Noah Hawley (creator and writer for this episode), Chris Claremont (based on the Marvel comics by) and Bill Sienkiewicz (based on the Marvel comics by)

Stars: Dan Stevens, Rachel Keller, Aubrey Plaza, and more.

    Mind-bending, unconventional and absolutely stylish, Legion (2017-) is every X-Men fan’s dream come true. For those of you who didn’t know, Legion is the first X-Men live-action TV series aired on FX. Based on David Haller, also known as Legion, and created by Chris Claremont and Bill Sienkiewicz, the show explores the character’s mental struggles as he tries to understand his own mind. While the show isn’t in continuity with the X-Men movies, Legion still shares the same universe, but lives and breaths in a parallel reality. There is but one element that connects these two worlds and it lies in David Haller’s parents, a secret well-kept throughout the show. Finding out who that is is only half the fun. However, the show will brilliantly clue you in to the big revelation, but fans of X-Men will already know the answer and binge this show for its mere masterful story-telling and visual craftiness.

    Let’s get it out of the way. The actors in this show are excellent and beyond reproach. There isn’t a single miscast as every actor delivers a phenomenal performance throughout season 1. The first episode introduces us to the main cast with Dan Stevens (the Beast in the recent Beauty and the Beast movie) playing the role of David Haller, Fargo‘s Rachel Keller playing the role of Syd Barrett and Parks and Recreation‘s Audrey Plaza playing the role of Lenny Busker. As the episode progresses, you also find out about a secret organization that seeks to control all mutants—a premise that has always been present in the X-Men franchise. But what truly transpires as ingenious from Noah Hawley, director and writer of the recent TV show sensation Fargo, is how he molds this superhero TV series into something purely exquisite and original both in cinematography and in story-telling.

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    Dan Stevens’ portrayal of David Haller was authentic—performing a troubled, confused and normal-life-seeking individual. His inability to understand what his mind tortures him with forces him to question his own reality, hence succeeding in baffling viewers in their own capacity to distinguish truth from fiction. Furthermore, the introduction of Syd Barrett is what literally flips David Haller’s world upside-down. The chemistry between the two was inspiring and convinces you of the plausibility of the impossible. In fact, Syd’s special condition adds a level of complexity to their relationship that simply blows your mind. I absolutely loved how they built and developed it within just a couple of minutes, and triumphed in making the arrival of Syd a truly life-changing moment for David. Finally, while Lenny Busker doesn’t appear for a long time, her presence alone draws your attention and manages to stir up your curiosity. In fact, her confined-buddy role for David Haller and the rebellious aura that emanates from her were truly curious, and somehow added this level of comfort on screen. Having seen the whole first season, let me tell you that Audrey Plaza’s Lenny Busker performance will go down as one of the most phenomenal Spoiler (Highlight To See) : «villain performances» of all time, alongside Spoiler (Highlight To See) : «Vincent D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk and David Tennant’s Kilgrave»

    The show is unorthodox in so many ways, but thrives in every possible department. It has a modern feel, yet the setting and costumes might throw you back to the 60s. The music is insanely appropriate and adds to the whole psychedelic experience that this show promises to deliver. The cinematography of this show is mind-blowing, and that is an under-statement. For example, the slow-motion destruction sequences are such eye candies, and I can promise you that this show has a lot of unexpected visually stunning moments. In fact, the show explores different and unique ways to tell the story, and manages to blend everything in such a quirky yet successful way. If anything, the visual experience of this TV series alone warrants a second season, a third season, and so many more. I just love how it surprises you at each unexpected junction. I actually believe that your first viewing (or binge) will be your best one as every revelation won’t fail to amaze you.

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    The pilot episode, “Chapter 1”, does exactly what it’s supposed to do. It sets the tone and reels you in with little bits that are simply irresistible. The X-Men have always been known for tackling larger subjects (minus a couple of very mediocre movies we’ve had so far) and Legion does exactly that with the concept of mental illness. There’s isn’t an instant wasted in exploring questions that society have yet to have answers for regarding mental illness, such as insanity. Ultimately, the first episode introduces us to David Haller and his unique mind, and as you approach the ending of chapter 1, you quickly grasp the gravity and importance of David Haller’s character. Legion is one show that plays with perception and memory in a ravishing fashion. If you’re looking for an artistic, well-written and talent-filled show, this is it. If you’re a fan of the X-Men and want to see a completely new take on superhero TV series, this is it. So what are you waiting for?


If you want to check out some of the most iconic comics regarding Legion (David Haller), I’d recommend his first appearance in Chris Claremont’s New Mutants Classic (Volume 4) as well as the very first recent solo run regarding our man in Simon Spurrier’s X-Men Legacy (Volume 1) Prodigal.
Have you read any of these comics? Did you start the show yet?
I finished season 1!

Tell me what you thought of Legion (TV Series 2017-)! 😀

MY OVERALL RATING: ★★★★★/

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69 thoughts on “Legion Season 1 Episode 1 First Impressions

  1. healed1337 says:

    I haven’t yet finished the first season of Legion, but it seems to keep getting more and more interesting with each episode. With such an insane character with such powerful abilities though, how could you not make an unconventional show in every way possible? Such a mind bender.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      It really does get more intriguing with each episode. I love what each episode brings to table. The twists are just soooo uncanny (Ah ha! See what I did there? Uncanny X-Men! :D). And I agree, with a character like David Haller, I think the shows direction is just PERFECT. What episode are you at right now? 😀

      Like

  2. Bookstooge says:

    I have never been a fan of the “Superhero Team” idea. I’ve always preferred the Lone Superhero standing against Evil, so my X-men experience is limited to some of Jim Lee’s stuff in the 90’s [Psylocke anyone?] and the X-men movie franchise.

    Considering how fast superhero tv shows are coming out on netflix, and how little I ever actually watch tv [even movies get the “background” treatment most of the time], I have accepted that this medium is one that I’ll be skimming in the coming years.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mediocrenick says:

    Take it from someone who has seen the entire first season, it won’t let you down. I haven’t ever seen anything like this on tv before. Each episode takes it a notch higher. And Dan Stevens is just phenomenal. Nice to see that you liked it too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Chris Evans says:

    Awesome review mate, really enjoyed reading your thoughts on Legion – encapsulated so perfectly and succinctly with words like “unorthodox” and “quirky”. Totally agree about the casting – can you believe I’ve read comments elsewhere that have said Dan Stevens is over-acting?! He’s great in the role and Aubrey Plaza is a revelation.

    The visual style together with clothing, decor and music (I hope the release a tie-in CD) makes for a unique and satisfying mix in this bizarre, wacky and compelling series. I haven’t read any of the classic Legion stuff in the comics but Marvel are starting to release collections of the early New Mutants stories so will hopefully check this out one day.

    Anyway, can’t wait to see where they go with season 2!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Thank you so much for the kind words, sir! Whoever thought Dan Stevens was over-acting is insane himself. I mean David Haller, in the comics at least, is, from what I understand, even more intense of a character. If they had even tried to recreate that very character, I’m pretty sure we would have thought that Dan Stevens didn’t do enough!

      I really can’t wait to see what surprises season 2 will have for us! Marvel’s X-Men comics have ALWAYS seemed like a crazy mess to me. It was always too hard for me to want to “start” picking up any series, but I do like the sound of these future new collections. Are these related to the soon-to-be-released X-Men: New Mutants movie?

      Thanks again for reading my review, man. I appreciate it! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Books, Vertigo and Tea says:

    I am so frustrated with you haha. You are doing that thing you do again where I find myself adding another series to my pile of “was not going to watch but need to watch because Lashaan convinced me”. Shame!!!!

    This sounds really good though. I think I will ask the nonhusband about starting it when he is back. I wonder if it will pop up on Netflix so we can binge first season..

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      In all honesty, there was a little part of me, in a dark corner, that was having an evil laugh moment knowing that if you read this post, you’ll most likely be infuriated by the NEED to add this your to watchlist!!! 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

      I’d honestly want to rewatch this if they ever put it up on Netflix! I don’t know if Netflix USA already has it though, you should definitely try this out with the nonhusband when you get the chance. It’s going to be a trippy but really entertaining ride! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  6. theorangutanlibrarian says:

    Ahh I already wanted to watch this so badly- but now… eeek- I need to watch this!!! I already thought from the trailer it looked like a fantastic premise and the cinematography looks awesome- I’m so glad to hear that’s the case for the whole show. Basically I’m gonna have to watch this!! Awesome review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Yes, yes, yes!!! 😀 So glad to hear of your interest for this. The moment I heard they planned on making a couple live-action X-Men shows, I was hooked, but when Legion was officially announced? I was drooling for the release of every episode!! 😀 You have to jump on it. If people thought the Netflix Marvel TV shows (Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist) were the only “dark” and “quality” superhero shows out there, they’ve completely turned their backs on Legion. This show deserves more attention and love!!! Hope you do enjoy it when you get around to it, but thank you so much for reading!! So glad that I was able to fuel your interest. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

    Oh my god how had I not heard of this before your post? I’m not sure but now I know Legion exists I need to check it out ASAP. I love the X-Men, loved Audrey Plaza in Parks and Rec, and loved Dan Stevens in Beauty and the Beast. Basically this sounds like the kind of show I’d love your positive review has only left me more convinced that I am missing out by not having seen this episode yet! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      😀 😀 😀 So glad to bring this show out in the open for you!!! This is a MUST as far as TV shows goes. The quality is oustanding, the story is brilliant and the visuals are stunning! Fans of X-Men shouldn’t skip on this, and see what David Haller is all about ASAP! 😀 Thank you so much for your kind words and I do hope you’ll enjoy this show as much as I did! It explores the brain/perception/memories in ways that no other show has done before! Psychology would be proud of this show! 😛

      Liked by 1 person

      • Beth (Reading Every Night) says:

        You definitely did that, without this post I wouldn’t have known it even existed. And to be honest as soon as I saw it was an X-Men story I knew I had to watch it, the rest is just an added bonus on top of all that. 🙂 That’s all right, and I really hope so too! 😀

        Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      I’m really happy to bring some light on this show! I had a feeling that a lot of people might not have even heard about it. Legion deserves so much more love and attention! It is a whole new take on superhero TV shows and is totally worth checking out. I do hope you’ll find a way to check it out and enjoy it as much as I did! 🙂

      P.S. Thank you so much for the nomination! Will definitely try and do this in the near future!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Kat Impossible says:

    I feel so bad because I still haven’t watched the show, but I wanted to be in the right mood for it. I started episode one and I was mesmerized, but I was also really busy and my mind kept wandering and I just knew that I had to watch this only when I was able to give it my full attention. I am so very glad to hear that you loved it though! It makes me pretty optimistic that I will too.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. theorangutanlibrarian says:

    So I’m back again cos I *finally* watched the first two episodes and LOVED them- they’re so unique and I love the visual style!! I also love how it plays with his power. My one complaint, and I’m going to be brutally honest here, is that I died inside a little when the woman says “we believe, myself and the people here…” in the opening to the second episode. I know a lot of other people can’t get the reflexive tense right but I cannot believe that the show writers don’t know basic grammar- I’ll admit that made me go full on grammar Nazi! 😉 Still like the show, but yeah, Western civilisation is done for (I *may* be prone to hyperbole 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      I told you! This show is unbelievable. Just the visuals alone could steal your heart. Watch how they play his powers in the later episodes, it’s INSANE. I absolutely loved the ideas they went with.

      Okay, that whole grammar Nazi bit had me laughing hahahahahah Heeeey, maybe it was intentional. Maybe they wanted to reflect reality through bad grammar that happens here and then when speaking spontaneously, contrary to prepared speeches. 😛 But man, still reallllyy hilarious how it caught your attention and killed the vibe though. I’ve never had such an experience before, in regards to TV series and movies. It does happen sometimes with books, but that’s especially cause it’s easier to catch these mistakes. But on TV/movie? I let myself believe that it’s just part of the character and the heat of the moment or something hahahaha

      Yooo, you got to let me know when you get around to the end of the season too. Gosh, if you enjoyed the first two episodes this much (minus that little ugly moment there ahahahah), I can’t imagine your reaction for later episodes! 😛

      Liked by 1 person

      • theorangutanlibrarian says:

        Ahh yes they really did- I’ve never seen anything like it. I’m so looking forward to where they take this and I am so curious about so many things!!
        hehehehe I think that’s the perfect way to look at it!!! hahaha she does seem like the kind of person prone to hyper-correction (gosh darn it, I am such a dork 😉 ) hahaha I don’t think this has ever happened to me before either lol!! I usually just assume the character has bad grammar 😉
        I will absolutely!!! I’ve not been able to watch episode 3 yet, but I’m really looking forward to it!!! 😀 (and any future grammar blips I will blame on the characters 😉 :p )

        Liked by 1 person

        • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

          And that silent movie treatment too though!!! Oh man, I absolutely loved the integration of that style!! Wasn’t the show just MARVELOUS? 😀 😀 I feel like they’ve explored SO many ways to tell a story in just one short season. Honestly can’t wait to see what they’ll do in season 2. :O

          Liked by 1 person

          • theorangutanlibrarian says:

            YES!!! The style was absolutely incredible!!! It really was!!! Yes- I cannot believe how Marvel-ous it was 😉 I cannot believe how clever it was- probably one of the most visually exciting and unique things I’ve ever seen. Me neither!!!

            Liked by 1 person

  10. Sophie @ Blame Chocolate says:

    Insanely well-written review, Lashaan! (Of course, I wasn’t expecting anything less from you)
    I consider myself an X-Men fan, even if I’m not as incredibly knowledgeable as some people. So I would go into this knowing “the secret”, which I don’t think would have hindered my experienced in the least.
    Although I did find the trailer visually astounding, this type of narrative is not exactly my cup of tea. I do prefer the awkward teenage/underdog struggle against the real world as opposed to his own mind/reality, which is not to say that either is any less fascinating. Just a personal opinion.
    I might try to get into Legion just to see what the fuss is about but right now I might have to skip it. Nonetheless, I’m really glad you’re enjoying it so much! Let’s hope it continues down that awesome path 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lashaan (Bookidote) says:

      Awww man. Thank you so much for such kind word! It always makes me super happy when y’all show so much appreciation for my writing! 😉
      Totally understand your preferences. Not everything is everyone’s cup of tea after all! To each their own kinds of chocolate. 😀 😀 😀 You should definitely give the pilot a shot, just to see if it’s really not to your taste! Who knows, maybe it’ll surprise you and you’ll find exactly what you like about the X-Men hidden within the narrative!
      Reeeeaally appreciate you stopping by, Sophie! always such a pleasure to hear your thoughts on what I read or watch! 😛

      Liked by 1 person

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