Legion Chapter 5: We’ll Never Listen to “Rainbow Connection” the Same Way Again

Legion Chapter 5 Plot Summary:

As David (Dan Stevens) allows Lenny (Aubrey Plaza) to take control over his mind so they can free Amy (Katie Aselton), more is revealed about the mysterious villain, which may spell doom for Melanie (Jean Smart) and the gang.

Well, one thing’s for sure – I’ll never be able to listen to “Rainbow Connection” the same way again. Thanks, Legion. It’s amazing to think one of my biggest criticisms of this show early on was the lack of a great villain. Wow. I feel like I just scored a zero on the wonderlic test, because we may have just seen one of the greatest television villains of all time. Holy matza balls.

We learn A LOT about Lenny Busker (or is it Benny?) in this episode, and boy, is he/she a doozy. Creepy. Powerful. Mind-boggling. Crafty. Ruthless. To watch this villain unfold throughout the hour+ episode was incredible. What’s so cool about this villain is we get to see it portrayed by three different entities. You can see now why Dan Stevens was essential casting for this show. His versatility was desperately needed. To watch him transform from David into this sick, manipulative bastard was exhilarating, as well as unsettling. That “Rainbow Connection” ditty gave me chills.

As great as Stevens is as the villain, let’s not forget about Aubrey Plaza. You want to talk about acting versatility, she certainly has it too. Can we cast her as a superhero movie villain? She can play both extremes – the calm, cool, collected bad guy, as well as the rabid, crazy bad guy. We also get to see Lenny in his purest form, that being a fat necked creep job right out of an iconic 80’s horror movie. I’ve always said Heroes was the closest comparison for this show. If you remember in the season one finale, they teased this villain known as the “nightmare man.” He didn’t really come to fruition in season two, but this is the guy I always pictured him being. Bottom-line: This villain kicks ass!

While the villain was no doubt the highlight, this episode had plenty of other stellar character moments and weird ass crap going on. Sid (Rachel Keller) continues to be a fascinating character, as she describes her first time being intimate. It’s one of the most warped stories ever, but also a very human moment. That was great.

We also piggyback on the revelation from last week regarding the wonder twins, Cary/Kerry (Bill Irwin & Amber Midthunder respectfully), and continue to learn more about how their dynamic works. This show has no fear when it comes to how strange it can be. THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE DOCTOR STRANGE MOVIE, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! AHHHHHHHHH!!!! Ptonomy (Jeremie Harris) also continues to be a great source of comic relief. He’s just a cynical asshole. I love it.

Legion is also very smart on its limited television budget when it comes to mutant powers. While we don’t see David/Lenny go nuts, we get glimpses of the aftermath. To me, this is what superhero movies should do more of. It makes their powers more mythical. David went full Apocalypse here. And to backtrack on Stevens’ performance as the bad guy, I love how he trounces down the hallways like he’s Alex from A Clockwork Orange, which is ironic, as they reference Singing in the Rain later in the episode.

If I had one complaint about this episode, it’s that when the crew goes to help David at Division 3, Ptonomy goes to wake everybody up, but only the core characters end up going? Huh? Then why the hell did you wake everybody up?! That makes no sense! The musical transition here also felt out of place.

This was by far the best episode of Legion to date. Not only are they nailing these characters, but the show is more innovative than most superhero shenanigans we see on film and television. There’s a point where I needed to check to see if my TV was still working when they screw with the sound. That was brilliant.

Legion has been pushing the envelope since the beginning. Now that they’ve found a cohesive narrative and locked in on all these characters, the show is unstoppable.

Rating: 9 out of 10 (OMG)

Daniel Cohen is the hard-boiled Film Editor for the Pop Break. Besides reviews, Daniel writes box office predictions, Gotham reviews and Oscar coverage. He can also be found on the Breakcast. If Daniel was sprayed by Scarecrow’s fear toxin, it would be watching Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen on a non-stop loop.