Peace, love, understanding, and space.
The episode begins with Division 3 on the road, Jack. As the Vermillion ride on their motorcycles, Daniel has a call with Clark.
But collision is imminent when the Vermillion spot David standing in the middle of the road. The Vermillion crash through him and are eliminated in an instant. David then appears inside the bus, disposes of the guards, and approaches Daniel, who zaps him. It’s enough to stun him, but nothing more.
Daniel informs David that his mind has been trained, so David decides to go long-term so he can get the information that he needs. After a brief visit through Daniel’s history, David again asks where Switch is. However, now Daniel has no idea who David is. David tells Daniel that they’re old college friends. Daniel suddenly remembers that Switch is on the airship.
Later, Division guards enter the van and find Daniel, who suddenly can’t remember what his name is. Don’t you hate when that happens?
Back to David’s hippie compound as his followers are dancing the night away. They’re all getting matching blue flower wreaths.
David returns home and is surprised to see that his children are waiting for him. Well, everyone except for Lenny, who is resting. David calls for silence- seemingly eliminating a chunk of his followers in the process- and calls out for Lenny as he tells her that they’re going to war. For a moment, he gets no answer.
At last, an intoxicated Lenny emerges, sick of David talking about his problems. She thought that she was the narcissist, but then she held her baby. David says that was a trick, but Lenny knows that she held her child. She thought that she was an asshole, but she was a lot better before this. The two of them had plans, but then David ruined them.
David will let Lenny mope, as he reminds her that they are her family now. So it’s time to get Switch. If they change the past, maybe Lenny will get Janine back. Lenny calls David a liar, but David once again tells Lenny that he needs her help.
Lenny then lets David know that he can’t have her. To prove her point, she stabs herself in the throat.
As she slowly bleeds out, she asks David why the light and liquid around them is blue. Turns out that it’s always blue.
Time for another lesson in time travel. When one exists in all times, one exists in no times. We then jump to Switch ‘dining’ with her father and are asked an important question: what comfort a time traveler can find at the moment, knowing that everything that exists will end? It’s because of this that time travelers are the loneliest creatures in the world.
As Switch examines herself in the mirror, we see a certain key on the back of her neck…
In actuality, she’s in a chamber that will protect her from David’s telepathy. Cary explains this to Syd and Kerry, but Farouk feels that this is a mistake. He’s confident that he can beat David since David is erratic now, while Farouk is a strategist. Still, the mainframe is calculating a plan.
It’s also mentioned that ship is capable of low orbit, so yes, it looks like the gang is headed to space! With that, Syd orders that they be taken up. Perhaps they can stop the Phoenix Force before it gets to Jean Grey…
Elsewhere on the ship, Clark watches some home movies of him with Daniel. Syd prepares herself as the ship is ready to head into orbit.
In his chamber, Farouk remembers cradling David as a child. He looks out to David and laments how the young boy has become undone by revenge. It fills him with sorrow. The ship heads higher and higher. Telepathically, Farouk tells David to do and take what he wants. Gods don’t follow rules- they make them. As such, it’s time for them to pay. That much David understands.
The spectrum analysis is finally complete and the data stream is functioning at a normal level. As Cary continues his examinations, everyone else prepares. The Vermillion detect a life form, so the Division guards are immediately on high alert. All the while, David wants them to be free, so the guards all vanish, one by one.
Back in Clark’s chambers, he’s still watching his home movies, but something gets his attention. Before he can grab his gun, it turns out to be a rubber ducky instead. David appears, with Clark lamenting not killing him when they first met.
A missed opportunity, I’m sure. In an instant, Clark and the Division soldiers end up in the vacuum of space. Dead.
Kerry engages with some of David’s followers in what I’m guessing is the moment she’s been waiting for to kick some ass. As she does, the mainframe and Vermillion enter a pod as the lockdown procedure begins.
Syd, meanwhile, awakens with David at her window, saying that she shouldn’t have trusted Farouk, who gave David a call. Farouk didn’t like the Division’s plan, turns out. David still hasn’t found Switch, so Syd tells him that Cary built a tank for Switch and that she’s in the lab. David wants to know why Syd told him, but she knows that David will find her anyway.
She tells David that she’s not angry at him anymore. She was before, but now she gets it. You can’t love halfway. David promises only good things going forward. When Syd asks David if he killed everyone, he tells her that no one who dies is really dead. The past changes and the future disappears. So people like Clark and Lenny get a do-over.
However, Syd wants to know what happened to Lenny, and David tells her that Lenny abandoned him, just like his parents. And just like Syd, but Syd reminds David that he left her. David trusted Syd, and Syd admits that she should’ve trusted him. However, Melanie showed her things- Farouk showed her things- to make her think that David betrayed her. She believed him, and now look where they are.
David left to fix things. It doesn’t matter now because Syd knows that David will change things. That way, none of this will happen. Not for her, at least. They won’t have fallen in love. Syd asks if David knows how it feels to be erased. She wants another chance, too. With that, Syd goes in to touch his cheek and at this moment I feel like the biggest idiot for forgetting Syd’s powers. With that touch, the two swap bodies!
Kerry awakens from her ass kicking when Syd, in David’s body, approaches. Kerry slices down David’s flowers, but Syd’s time in David is interrupted. By whom?
By Legion? David’s many many other personalities arrive, telling Syd that they are, in fact, Legion. Syd may have gotten her way into David’s mind, but Legion is ready to force her out.
Syd instructs Kerry to kill David’s body, saying that she’ll switch back to her own body at the lats second. However, just as Kerry goes in for the killing blow, David returns to his body, snaps Kerry’s blade in two, and sends her flying. The personalities figure that Syd can’t trick them if she has no mind.
So David does just that by wiping her mind. Syd is rendered motionless while David leans over her as he apologizes.
He then teleports himself to approaches Switch’s chamber. Before he can do anything, he’s frozen in place by the approaching Farouk. David tells Farouk that he can’t stop them. They’ll get free and kill Farouk, and then undo everything that Farouk did to him. David figures that Farouk hates him, but hating David would be like Farouk hating himself. his life, but that would be like Farouk hating himself.
Farouk means his kind words, as David is his son. David’s problem is his temperament. However, Farouk has his own problem: Switch. After David moves the neutralizing device from his wrist to Farouk’s, Switch emerges and drops Farouk through a time hallway back into the time between time.
Switch tells David that she had the worst nightmares and asks David if they’re all dead. He confirms that most are, and he doesn’t appear to be bothered by that.
He tells her that as he walks through this wicked world and tries to save it from the darkness of insanity and Oh my God, everyone is breaking out into “(What’s So Funny ’Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding.” Even Syd is singing, and her mind’s been wiped. Supposedly.
Shit, even Lenny’s singing, and she’s dead! Maybe. So yeah, what’s so funny about peace, love and understanding? I have no idea. Anyway, David is ready. He tells Switch that they’ll make one minor change, but he won’t be going to Gabrielle. He has a different plan this time.
Switch creates a portal to the time hallway as she and David enter. But the Time Demons are still lurking as the episode comes to a close…
Well, in theory, there’s nothing wrong with peace, love, and understanding. That’s not the issue. The issue is David’s approach to getting that peace and love. It’s come at the cost of making him an enemy of his former friends, exhausting Switch, and losing possibly the closest friend he ever had. For now, anyway.
As the season has progressed and the scope of David’s plan comes into focus, we see how much his meddling has altered things for the worse. Him trying to change things through time travel just ups the ante. This, in turn, spells out that he could be the one who brings about the end of the world.
“Chapter 24” takes us further down the destructive path that David is walking in his attempts to right his wrongs. He believes that he’s doing the right thing and will achieve peace, but the thing is that David isn’t a selfless person. At least, not in the practical sense. To him, everyone gets a do-over as a result of him changing things. But what if they don’t want a do-over?
It’s another question of should we change the past if given the opportunity? Who would really change? Who would refuse to change? Now David isn’t going back over and over and stirring the anger of the Time Demons, but we do see the fallout from his decisions in the previous episode. Those decisions, which led to Cary taking Switch away, have given us an angry David.
But the scary part about David Haller, being an Omega level mutant, is how calm and in control he is. Like Charles, his telepathy gives him the ability to do whatever he wants, but unlike how unhinged he was in the first season, he walks and moves with the confidence of a god. His actions back up that demeanor, as he walks through the Division soldiers with ease and pries information from David without a thought.
He plucks Kerry across the room as if she were no bigger than a mouse. He disintegrates his foes left and right without needing to snap his fingers. More than that, when he’s ripped away from his own body, he has his own defense mechanism in order to restore control.
David isn’t insane. He’s the Magic Man with the capability to end the world, but he hasn’t lost his mind. The insane thing about this is how much he truly believes that he’s doing the right thing. Doesn’t matter whose mind he has to wipe or alter, who is killed, and who he uses as a pawn. What matters to him is achieving that peace, love, and understanding.
But even if David achieves that, it comes with a heavy cost. With a few exceptions, David isn’t stopping to think about his actions. His first instinct upon losing Switch was to go to war with the Division. With all this power at his fingertips, David’s first instinct upon not getting what he wants is to force a change. He can’t merely move ahead with the cards he’s been dealt. In this circumstance, he has to be the dealer and player.
Everyone else is just a pawn in his game or unlucky bystander. The one who gets it the worst is Lenny. David’s pal, his partner in crime, and the devil on his shoulder- Lenny has put up with a lot of David’s shit. For the most part, she managed to do it with a cheeky grin on her face. But as of recent, we’ve seen her horizon expand as she wanted more.
Here’s the kicker: ordinarily, she’d probably have no problem with David causing a time-travel ruckus. She lives for that sort of chaos. But once she saw her own child live and die before her eyes, she has little purpose. She had a shot at a family in Janine and while she could balance that with David’s actions, he became far too overbearing.
Coupled with David relying more on Switch and Lenny has slowly, but surely, lost her place in this grand plan. She’s just the traveling companion, but one who saw more for herself. What potential she had is smothered by David’s need to right the ship at the expense of her own happiness.
In a way, Lenny is as trapped here as she was when she was a vessel for Farouk in seasons prior. Of course, Lenny’s not even in her own body here either, but she’s at least grown accustomed to being in Amy’s body. Still, that passion for pathos has flickered out due to her seeing and losing what a real, down-to-earth life could be like for her and Janine.
Real or not, Lenny felt something. She didn’t want David to fix her last time because she needed to feel it. David would just remove those feeling altogether, almost like making her an empty shell. Hell, that’s where she ends up at the start, so what option is there other than taking her own life?
Now I’m going to assume that this isn’t the last we’ll see of Lenny or Aubrey Plaza. If it was that easy, we would’ve lost her the first time in the pilot. Then again, it’d be tragic if she took her life because she had nothing to live for anymore and David had essentially tossed her aside like a rag doll. He does feel her loss, though. I didn’t notice until a rewatch that he actually sheds a tear as Lenny dies.
Then again, time travel’s at play here. Maybe Lenny, like Clark, will get a do-over.
Clark and Daniel are also sort of bystanders in this master plan. More so Daniel than Clark since Clark at least leads the Division. But Daniel is just along for the ride and he ends up a victim when David just happens to be in his line of sight. Credit on him for at least putting up a fight and not just accepting his fate.
Daniel wasn’t even directly involved, so it’s not as if David had any reason to go to him. But at the same time, he couldn’t track Switch telepathically, so at least he’s exhausting any and every available option. That’s a proactive decision on David’s part, but unfortunate that Daniel was made to suffer because of it.
Hell, David pretty much tells everyone to get out of his way or suffer. He sends Clark and the soldiers into space, where the cold emptiness was waiting to swallow them. David isn’t just the Magic Man living in his own world. He’s trying to mold the world to how he wants it, but the others have no say one way or the other. He is, in effect, playing God.
In a way, that’s exactly what Lenny or Farouk would want: for David to tap into the fullness of his potential to bring about destruction. But not everyone is an Omega-level mutant. Hell, not everyone is a mutant at all. They might be able to stun David for a bit, like Daniel did, but they’re pretty much just meat shields at that point.
This episode didn’t have the horror feel of last time, and that’s okay because there was a healthy amount of suspense throughout. Whether it was wondering how far David would go, what he would do, or who would fall, it kept me tense throughout knowing that the Division had pissed off David. Switch was his best option to right his wrongs, and with her gone, he automatically decide to go for war.
Switch, by the way, is still going through her own arc as we continue learning about the lessons in time travel. Her nightmares aren’t getting any better and while the Time Demons may be gone for now, they could always pop up again if the two decide to travel through time over and over again.
She really is in the middle in all of this. She’s willing to help David, but completely understands why the Division would want to stop him. But then, the Division has enlisted the aid of the Shadow King. That right there is a deal breaker. But just like Syd, I expect that Switch will come out of this with a solution that rights things according to her terms, not David’s.
The two of them dispatching of Farouk happened a bit too quickly for my liking, given that this is the damn Shadow King, but like Lenny, I figure that this isn’t the last we’ve seen of him. Though the fact that Farouk has been speaking to David all this time shows that he had his own plan separate from what the Division had in store.
It’s hard to determine how much of David’s actions were because of him or Farouk’s influence, but you can never tell with this show. This doesn’t absolve David of blame completely or even at all, but we can at least tell from here that Farouk has still been in touch with him.
Syd surprised me this week. As adamant as she’s been about stopping David, she managed to find some common ground with him. Granted, she still wonders what would happen to her if she got a do-over. For a moment, it seemed like the two had solved their differences.
But then I remembered that Farouk did say he would try and teach Syd into emotionally manipulating David. Then I’m left wondering how much of that was genuine and how much was an act.
Before I could process that, the episode threw me for a loop and made me feel like a moron. Duh! Syd can swap bodies with anyone she touches! She hasn’t swapped with any people- or cats- in such a long time that I’d completely forgotten she had that ability. This was such a cool and unexpected moment that made me as surprised as David was. That’s my own fault for underestimating Syd, who was set to have David killed.
David lowering his defenses around Syd was his downfall, but then we got a great moment when we saw his alters appear to Syd. We got them hear the “I am Legion” line as David’s personalities forced Syd out of his mind as if she was a disease. Then David ups the ante by wiping her mind. Dirty move, David, but again, it represents how far he’ll go and who he’ll use in order to achieve his goal of peace, love, and understanding.
By the way, even though Kerry didn’t get much to do besides kill some of David’s followers and show excitement about going into space, I think, between her swords and blood lust, she would be a great candidate for X-Force.
That’s another thing. They went to fucking space. Space! Noah Hawley accomplished that in three seasons as this series went from trippy to tubular to cosmic in one episode. And in the same year that we finally saw the X-Men go to space on film in Dark Phoenix, too. Fantastic progression for a fantastic series.
The use of (What’s So Funny ’Bout) Peace, Love & Understanding was great as well in helping spell out what David wanted. It did bring the episode to a screeching halt, but this was literally the end of the episode and not something unexpected for Legion, so it sticks the landing just fine.
But where does this leave David? He tells Switch that he’s got a different plan, but as Switch’s time travel lesson asks, how much comfort can a time traveler really have? As we see when David is surrounded by his followers, he wants little to do with them this week. He’s the loneliest creature despite so many people gunning for him.
With so much destruction in his wake, David is too far gone past the point of stopping. Will his new plan be any better than what he’s already done? See you next week!