TV Recap: Legion: Season 2, Episode 2 - Chapter 10
Legion’s newest episode, “Chapter 10,” solidified a few guessed-at answers that were still lingering from even last season, and especially “Chapter 9.” “Chapter 10” also set in motion what feels like the driving force of the season’s drama—the search for Amahl Farouk, The Shadow King’s, body, in preparation for a coming threat.
In classic X-Men fashion, we’re shown the effect of failure to defeat the threat, before ever actually meeting it in-frame. David omits just enough of the truth for his motivations from Cary/Kerry to get their collective help to setup the back alley Cerebro to throw David’s consciousness into the far-flung future where whatever-the-hell-it-is has already won, taken one of Syd’s arms, and killed most of humanity.
It’s all very Days of Future Past-ish, in the theme: Syd and David discuss what he agreed to do, in helping find Farouk’s body. They also revealed some more of what transpired between David’s present and Syd’s future. Namely, that everyone’s dead, David smashed in Farouk’s head with a rock “a week from now” (whether that’s David’s ‘now’ or Syd’s, remains to be seen) and whatever-the-hell-it-is is soon to be coming for what’s left of humanity, on the ocean floor.
But back to the opening, with David, Lenny and Oliver all riding a carousel together, going around in endless loops while David fails to make much sense of anything going on. Lenny continues to have a greater handle on how David’s mind works than David does, reminding him that regardless if something actually “happened” or not, it’s the memory of it happening that’s shaped him into who he is, and reality is more of an agreement between friends than anything else, anyway.
And David has so many friends inside that head, talking all the time, over each other. Enough, in fact, that threads are being spun into Legion that David may be able to manipulate reality on the same level we see the Shadow King manage in this episode. David, Syd, Ptolemy, and the Vermillion (the Stepford Cuckoo-evoking, organic psychic machines) all venture out into the desert, looking for Farouk. Meanwhile, Farouk-in-Oliver, accompanied by Lenny, land a significant attack on Division 3. As in, they walk right the hell in, singing “Swinging on a Star,” disintegrating or transforming guards with their now-signature madcap glee. Seriously, three guards get turned into dust and one is morphed into a literal pig, another a fish.
Oliver and Lenny split up from there, to divide and conquer Cary & Kerry in subtle, but oh-so-trippy ways: Oliver grows multiple times his normal size, very *cough* Apocalyptically, cowing Kerry from physically attacking. Meanwhile, Lenny corners Cary in another room, and just…tuning forks him till both Cary and Kerry reel from the sound.
Cary and Kerry’s relationship in Legion has always been one of my favorites, full of both tension and obvious affection, so to see them put through the ringer here in “Chapter 10” hurt. The tuning fork-ing, we find out, reversed the hierarchy between them: now Kerry is the “home base” while Cary has to find his way out. The turmoil it causes them is heartbreaking and endearing, though, as Kerry has begun to age, where she hadn’t, before. This show is really branching out in how it hurts its characters, between Melanie Bird and now Cary & Kerry, and I both love and hate that it’s done so.
The attack leaves the Vermillion and Fukyama doubting David more strongly than before, as it was his say so that brought them all out into the desert, leaving Division 3 open to the wounding attack it suffered.
That suffering also extends to Lenny, whom we find out is not just a facet of the Shadow King, but an actual friend of David’s who was killed and psychically enslaved for purposes of getting to David. Lenny’s been inside whatever head Farouk controls for years, complaining she hasn’t had sex in far too long, and just wants to….go. Leave. Get out of Dodge. Farouk talks through her plans beyond just getting another body (“You can make me one, right?”) and eventually dying. Lenny’s little rebellion is quashed, but it’s easy to see Farouk’s not done with her yet. If ever.
David, in a potentially dangerous moment for his own welcome at Division 3, reaches out to Farouk directly-as-a-psychic can. They have words on the whole “transforming guards into Bing Crosby lyrics” thing from earlier. After a blessedly overdue dream logic-filled psychic sparring match, in which Farouk and David progress from wrestler singlets, to samurai, to a tank vs. oncoming storm battle, the two titans of telepathy reach an accord: David will find Farouk’s body, but Farouk must stop killing people.
And so, the hunt is well and truly, on to prevent a future from happening in which all but a few are very dead.
Check in next week for the recap of Chapter 11!