Rating: 2.5/5 – FX Legion is a TV show that left me thinking “what the fuck am I watching” in every episode. There’s different and then there’s being different for the sake of being different. Every episode of FX Legion felt like it was trying it’s best to be the most different thing ever. FX Legion only has eight episodes to it’s first season. Yet it felt more like 20. The story moved to slow and FX Legion’s explanation too too long. The endless mindscape sequences were to weird to really understand. By the third episode I was screaming “I get it, he’s crazy now could be please move on to explaining shit?” Whose fault is it? FX Legion suffers from the problem of bring 90’s comic characters into movies or TV. The problem is they’re 90’s comic characters.
Say You Want Some Convolution
Here’s the truth about comics. Since they are like soap operas there’s a tendency for them to become convoluted. It’s can’t be help with serialize stories that last five, ten and 20 years. Comic characters in the 1990’s fell into two categories; a great drawing but little writing, a great idea but badly executed.
Legion falls under the latter. He was created Chris Claremont and drawn by artist Bill Sienkiewicz. We’ll get to Bill Sienkiewicz a little bit later. Here’s the deal. Chris Claremont was famous for taking the X-Men, a D-list comic, and making it Marvel’s most popular book. The Phoenix saga is one of those stories stuck firmly in sacred territory among comic fans. The problem was no one wanted to admit that Claremont was a bit of a one-trick pony. He began to fizzle out after the Brood saga and all of his stories were more or less “let’s throw some shit against the wall and see what sticks.” Because of his status is writer of the Phoenix Saga he was given other books. One of those books was the New Mutants.
As a comic the New Mutants remained at a steady level of okay. It didn’t suck but no one was having big discussions about it in comic shops after the Graphic Novel. New Mutants wasn’t really bad but nothing to write home about. They were the baby X-Men and none of them went onto to any serious fame until the nostalgia bug bit after the 2000’s. Along came Bill Sienkiewicz in issue #17 and New Mutants because comic snob fodder.
God of Comic Snobs
I will not say whether Sienkiewicz is a good are bad artist, that’s subjective. I firmly believe he does not belong in any of Marvel’s regular super hero comics. Vertigo? Sure. Indie Experimental? Absolutely. His art is more like the painting from a madman whose only heard vague rumors of what a human body looks like. His layouts are always drab, the coloring washed and his panel flow makes no goddamn sense. Yet, for some reason people love him. Bill Sienkiewicz became a “fan favorite.” I personally hated every single page of his run on New Mutants. His style belongs in a horror book, not a super hero story. The first Legion story came out of that era of The New Mutants.
Dear FX Legion – Just Say “Mutant” Already!
This is a subject belonging to it’s own post but it first in a review of FX Legion. I do not understand this rift between comics and TV? FOX owns X-Men. FOX owns FX. Why can’t the fucking show just say “This is Xavier’s kid and he’s a powerful mutant?” I don’t get that at all? How could it be a license problem? Doesn’t FOX own all that shit? And hearing people say stupid shit like “I’m glad it’s not connected to the X-Men universe, that would take me out the show” make me want to reply “go fuck yourselves.”
This problem plagues every super hero property. I have read and heard so many critics saying the very idea of the Netflix Shows mentioning the name Avengers would somehow ruin the entertainment because they should be separate. Marvel dances around this by calling a major battle between super heroes and aliens would only be referred to as “The Incident.” This is completely stupid. If I witnessed super heroes duking it out with aliens it would be a topic of conversation for years. We would not call it “the incident’ we’d call it what it was, a fucking super hero battle. Then there’s this weird battle between studio heads. The TV division doesn’t want to be connected to the movie division because of bullshit.
Legion took forever to say the word mutant. They don’t even mention the X-Men. Because mention the group of super powered people responsible for picking up a sports stadium and dropping it on the white house lawn would be something no one would notice? WTF? The connection with the X-Men came in the final two episodes, and even then you need Wikipedia and Google to actually understand it. The bad guy talked about David’s father but refused to say “Charles” or “Xavier” because why mention one of the most famous mutants? This stupid disconnection between the TV shows and the movies is dumb and needs to be corrected.
FX Legion – A Low Budget Mess
I personal do not get all the love for FX Legion. It was slow, the plot was too messy, the characters were too “meh” and the ending didn’t rise above okay. If it actually connected to the universe it’s supposed to be a part of I’d have given it a better rating. This having their cake and eating it too method of trying to stand apart from the movies hurts it. The general audience is ready for that shared universe, but it NEEDS to be a real shared universe. The over all plot of Legion could have been done in three episodes but the show kept stopping to say “look how different we are from those other shows” and it got annoying. There was slow motion for no reason, we were not sure where characters stood (bad guys or good) and even the bad special effects were just bad. FX Legion has been picked up for a second season and I will probably binge watch it. I did not like what I got from this season at all.