The premiere of FX's Legion is less than two weeks away and despite its less-than-superheroish premise, it seems on track to be a fascinating spin-off of the X-Men franchise. Dan Stevens (Beauty and the Beast) plays David Haller (historically the son of Professor Charles Xavier) and a sometimes superhero, sometimes villain with not just split personalities but split sets of superpowers. Considering the current box office king is Split, which features former Professor X, James MacAvoy as a villain with multiple personalities, Legion seems to have come along at the perfect time.
Legion's teasers are pitching it as a very different kind of show than viewers are used to, blending colorful humor with aspects of a disturbing, superpowered psychological thriller. Noah Hawley (Fargo) created the show and Aubrey Plaza (Parks and Recreation) will round out the supporting cast, as David's friend, Lenny.
Studios are always looking for interesting new ways to market their products, and it seems that FX has found one. Legion is getting its own art exhibition in Brooklyn, New York (official details here). Among its displays is a mind-bendingly cool piece by Michael Murphy. In a press release (via Gizmodo), Murphy described the thought process that went into the piece.
“There’s a moment in the first episode when [the main character] says, ‘I’m insane, this is my delusion!’ What an explosive statement. I’ve taken inspiration from that suspicion, and translated into a dimensional expression, the embodiment of a pivotal scene from the series, David’s kitchen bursting, or perhaps it’s a metaphor for what’s going on inside his head.”
“In designing my work, my goal is to create an unexpected perceptual experience. One that is intellectually challenging and, at the same time, technically intriguing. I utilize optical illusion, sculptural practices, and spatial techniques to create installations that stimulate thought. I view my art as a vehicle for ideas. And in this work, you’re invited to step into David’s world, literally.”
The piece does an exceptional job of not only recreating the scene of David destroying his kitchen but also showing reason within chaos - writing a coherent message (the show's logo) with marvelously fragmented ink. Art of this kind has been created before, but it works marvelously well in conjunction with the themes of the show. With any luck, the actual series will be just as trippy and cool.
Legion premieres Wednesday, February 8 @10pm on FX.