Legion

TV review by
Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media
Legion TV Poster Image
Eye-opening sci-fi thriller has intrigue, scary visuals.

Parents say

age 15+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 15+
Based on 8 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

Positive messages are few and far between: viewers may come away thinking medical professionals and government agents are not to be trusted. Much of the series takes place in a mental hospital, which looks frightening and ghoulish. Women are given strong roles; but characters of color are sparse to nonexistent. 

Positive Role Models & Representations

David tries to be noble, but he's a confused man -- he doesn't understand his powers or what he's wrapped up in. Syd is courageous but disabled due to her particular superpower. Both of them try to do the right thing, they're just not always sure what that is. 

Violence

The secret war David's involved in has high stakes -- he might be suddenly killed by evil agents. He tries to commit suicide by hanging himself with a lamp cord. Soldiers carry machine guns while trying to rout out mutants; characters are injured by objects moved by telekenesis: a pen flies up and sticks deep into a man's jaw. Many visions involve violence and creepy images: criminals through burning trash cans through a glass window, a woman is knocked to the floor, a man hides in a bush and peers out menacingly. A dead character returns in ghostly visions. Dead bodies are shown onscreen.

Sex

Lenny frequently says vulgar things about women; she praises Syd's "nice hindquarters" and "titties." There's kissing and flirting as well. 

Language

Some cursing: "Holy s--t!" The occasional vulgar reference to women's body parts and body functions. 

Consumerism

This story is connected to a larger comic book mythology -- expect characters from other comics adaptations to show up. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

A teen drinks a beer; it's implied that he's trying to deal with the voices he hears in his head. David refers several times to psychiatric medications, which don't seem to help him. 

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Legion is a gripping sci-fi series about a young man who believes he's mentally ill but actually has super powers. Much of the series takes place in a mental hospital, which has creepy medical professionals and drooling patients. Doctors and nurses loom, push pills, hold patients down and deliver shots, all of which could scare young kids. Shadowy agents talk casually about killing the show's main character, David, and at one point he attempts suicide himself, hanging himself from an appliance cord. Soldiers with machine guns hunt down mutants; objects fly around when a character with telekinesis gets angry, and injure people (one bad guy gets an ink pen stuck through his cheek). Dead bodies are shown onscreen. Characters kiss, and there are vulgar words for body parts and bodily functions, as well as occasional cursing: "Holy s--t!" A teen drinks beer to deal with his stress; many patients talk about and take psychiatric medications. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byChris1989 March 5, 2017

Wow this is a captivating show

I gotta be honest with you on this in the beginning of the show I only watched it cause it had to do with x men but As I have been watching it I have grown more... Continue reading
Adult Written byBigbro27 February 9, 2017

All seems great for now PS last night I saw nudity in the show

OK I only watched the first episode of this so far and I was a little mislead it seems I thought it was supposed to be about x men but it seems that the show ha... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written byDominatorcc February 15, 2017

Really Intrigued

I've only seen the pilot so far. I was afraid that this show was going to be racy/inappropriate because the show is TV-Ma, and Fx tends to have inappropria... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byNoahMeeuws April 3, 2017

The greatest and weirdest show ever!

Legion is one of the greatest and weirdest show ever! But it's definitely NOT appropiate for kids. The first episodes are mainly some sci-fi stuff and roma... Continue reading

What's the story?

In the sci-fi drama LEGION, David Haller (Dan Stevens) is a young man who's spent most of his life in a mental institution, told that the voices he hears in his head are schizophrenia. But no matter what the doctors say, Haller can't shake the feeling there's more going on than just hallucinations. When he gets angry, objects fly through the air and people get hurt. What's more, he suspects he's not the only one with a little more than normal human abilities -- fellow patient Syd Barrett (Rachel Keller) also has a special talent, one that has to do with her hatred of being touched. When the two pair up and begin to realize just what they are -- and that there are people out there that mean to do them harm -- they're launched into a terrifying new reality. 

Is it any good?

Cinematic, creepy, beautiful, and bizarre, this hallucinatory series may be both the best superhero show on the air and the best X-Men iteration yet. Beset by visions and (true?) delusions, Stevens is a bewildering, yet sympathetic character who makes it easy to imagine: What if it were me caught in an elaborate plot designed to rout out those who are different? As he attempts to ferret out the truth through dreams, confused memories, and communiques from ghosts and fellow mutants, we're just happy to be along for the ride.

Trippy visuals are just part of the pleasure here -- the costume designer is clearly having a wonderful time coming up with off-kilter 1960s outfits, and everything's lit in bloody red or eerie yellow. When David has a telekinetic fit, every tool in an office flies through the air to the dreamy strains of Jane's Addiction. Of course, if you've ever watched an X-Men movie you're one up on David, and know why he's being persecuted and just what he's up against -- but mesmerized viewers won't be able to stop themselves from binging on one more episode of Legion to find out what happens next. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how often fantasy and science fiction are ways to talk about tough real-world issues. Does the acceptance of the unreal make it easier to discuss the real? What real-world evils are represented by the agents who are hunting David and his fellow mutants in Legion

  • What time period is the show set in? How can you tell? How does a show communicate its setting in costumes, styling, stage dressing? 

  • What's the difference between science-fiction series and movies? What types of stories can be told in a movie vs. episodically on television? Which do you prefer? 

TV details

For kids who love comic characters

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