Directed by Dana Gonzales
Written by Noah Hawley & Nathaniel Halpern
* For a recap & review of Chapter 17, click here.
* For a recap & review of Chapter 19, click here.
We see Syd (Rachel Keller) as she’s going after David (Dan Stevens), believing he’s no longer aiming for what he originally intended. Things have certainly changed. In the desert, not far from where they’re staying in a tent, Syd finds a huge hole, next to it a gigantic drain stopper. Soon a bunny appears. A hook is in it. Syd frees it, but then – you guessed it – she’s hook, line, and sinker, dragged down into the hole. This leaves David curious as to where she’s gone, with only that gigantic hole for a clue.
Way down there, someplace, Syd finds Dr. Melanie Bird (Jean Smart) talking the “greatest threat” to their gender: men. They’ve both wound up in that place because of the so-called genius men in their lives. Although the younger of the two women doesn’t necessarily agree, and she’s more inclined to figure out a way to get out of that pit. Well, Dr. Bird does a lot more talking. Such as trying to convince Syd that David’s actually crazy, underneath all his good intentions.
Meanwhile, the guy’s out walking through a sandstorm. He comes across a carriage, then in the distance he sees an elegant home. Inside is Oliver Bird (Jemaine Clement), awaiting him. David gets pretty physical. However, he soon goes full-on psychological, heading into Oliver’s mind. Of course it’s all facilitated by Amahl Farouk (Navid Negahban). He’s the one manipulating every last little thing. Nevertheless, Syd’s getting a full view of the torture David puts Oliver through, seeing his “true face” of insanity.
Love as a mutant is hard.
“What he really loves – what they all love – is that feeling of power knowing you’ve been chosen by God— that you’re special, that you’re the destiny.”
And in the mix is Lenny (Aubrey Plaza). She’s out near the massive hole and its stopper. She finds a bunch of monks with boxes on their heads, sitting around the circle. So, she joins in for a bit of meditation. Only Lenny doesn’t like to sit still too long, y’know. Particularly not when she discovers what’s in the box from the trunk: a powerful sniper rifle.
Melanie is pushing Syd further about her love with David. She wants to create as much doubt as possible, for the Shadow King’s purposes. And it’s working, if only gradually at first. She shows Syd herself in the future, talking with Amahl about a coming apocalypse— when he figured out David is the one who will cause it to take place, becoming “Legion, the world–killer.”
In the meantime, Kerry (Amber Midthunder), Cary (Bill Irwin), and a team from Division 3 are searching for Lenny. They find the monks without the boxes on their heads, crawling out of the hole armed with some bad ass old school weaponry that incapacitates using sonic frequency. It makes some people vomit, lose control of bodily functions. Kerry’s too tough for that shit. She takes it to those motherfuckers with nothing ill to show for her efforts but a nosebleed. Problem is, after she’s done, more of them keep coming out of the hole. When she gets down to a couple last monks, with the surprise help of Lenny, one of them snatches Cary down the hole, too.
Not to mention, down there, somewhere else, Farouk continues his manipulation of Melanie, who manipulates Syd – that beastly Minotaur serving its dark purposes in their minds – and down below is also Farouk’s own corpse. Melanie – carrying the consciousness of the Shadow King- lays her lips on the body, then the body comes back to life. Oh, lord.
Kerry heads down the massive hole to go looking for Cary, while Lenny stays up top with her rifle to keep watch. But, as usual, there’s trouble. The Minotaur finds Cary and the monk in the dark halls below, sending Cary off running in the dark. The Vermillion are down there, as well, about to come face to face with the Minotaur. Not fucking good, man. At least Cary finds a way in further. There he locates Oliver in awful shape after his torture, David sitting by resting— he’s also slipping into a bit of that insanity, maybe some depravity, his mind focused totally on brutal vengeance at this point.
In the maze-like halls, Kerry sees the Vermillion decapitated. After that she finds Syd, who’s worried about David becoming “the monster.” They’re intruded upon by the Minotaur, and this gives Syd a chance to work on a bit of anger alongside Kerry. Not that it’s an easy fight, though.
Topside, Farouk is feeling his full powers once more. He’s frighteningly strong, in that psychological strength kind of sense. So much so he can literally make the sun rise. This is most definitely a game-changer, of particular concern to the idea David will soon fully become Legion, the world-killer.
Another fine example of a surreal and also plot-driven episode, something Legion‘s excelled at since the start. Can never get enough, really. Looks like there’s one last episode to this wonderfully weird and excellent Season 2— Chapter 19 is next time.