Legion is unlike any previous Marvel adaptation on either television or the big screen, solely for the fact that it’s not about an established hero, but more about what it’s like for David Haller (Dan Stevens) to come to terms with his troubled past, misdiagnosed mental illnesses, and his own unique abilities. Sometimes, Legion is hard to follow and it’s certainly not recommended as a casual watch. That said, the new Marvel series has given us some remarkable characters and some compelling conflicts, both internally and externally.
As FX renews Legion for a second season, fans are hoping the series showrunners will explore one of those internal conflicts more closely and make Lenny Busker (Aubrey Plaza) a more permanent part of the show.
Legion Gets A Second Season, With Or Without Lenny
As Screener TV points out, David’s descent into his inner psyche on Legion has become more enrapturing as the season has progressed with voices from the past melding with present circumstances to create a truly confounding experience. Amid this chaos, Lenny has emerged and, while she may or may not be a voice of reason, she is certainly one of the loudest and most constant presences in David’s mind.
As the first season of Legion has progressed and there has been more for Aubrey Plaza to do as Lenny, fans of the Marvel series have found something especially intriguing about her, particularly since Lenny could be Denny or a complete figment of David’s imagination.
While this week’s episode of Legion explores the character portrayed by Plaza more closely, the scenes reveal little, only deepening the mystery of Lenny’s real identity. Is Lenny even Lenny, or is she Benny, or David’s dog King, or is she the World’s Angriest Boy in the World? Could Aubrey Plaza’s character really be the manifestation of the Shadow King Amahl Farouk, as an earlier episode of Legion has implied?
Whatever may be revealed by Legion in the season finale, it seems certain that Aubrey Plaza is gradually and deviously becoming a rather insidious villain on Legion and a face to watch for in Season 2.
Aubrey Plaza Shares Her Legion Experience
As mentioned earlier, “Chapter 6” of Legion, which aired this Wednesday, gives fans more on Lenny and, as the Hollywood Reporter shares, Aubrey Plaza’s latest scenes prove once and for all that there’s more to Lenny than meets the eye. While Plaza’s character is being exposed a little more this week, Legion still keeps much about the character shrouded in mystery. One way of doing that was to have Aubrey play more than Lenny. She plays up to four different characters, each of them significant to David’s journey.
While the performances showcased Aubrey Plaza’s talents and made for some compelling revelations on Legion, Ms. Plaza reveals why it was a complicated piece to put together for her as an actress.
“That was probably the most difficult scene of the series for me,” the Legion actress says. “Essentially, I’m playing four different characters in one scene — or at least that’s how it was in my head. This scene is kind of the big reveal. You’ve seen drug addict Lennie. You’ve seen overalls Lennie appearing as these hallucinations. You’ve seen Lennie in a suit that’s kind of this crazy Beetlejuice character who has some other agendas. You’ve seen therapist Lennie. So that scene was very complicated for me, and it was really fun and really challenging. It’s Lennie’s biggest moment in the series.”
At one point in Legion‘s first season, there’s the insinuation that maybe Lenny isn’t really Lenny, but a drug dealer named Denny. That bit may have been inspired by real circumstances. Aubrey reveals that, when she auditioned for Legion, it was not with the intention of playing Lenny. In fact, the part of Lenny had been intended for a male, so Plaza says she was shocked to later learn that she had been cast in that all too important Legion role.
“Chapter 6,” this week’s episode of Legion, opens with Aubrey’s character playing the part of a therapist, psychoanalyzing Melanie Bird (Jean Smart), Ptonomy Wallace (Jeremie Harris), Cary and Kerry Loudermilk (Bill Irwin and Amber Midthunder). Plaza says she wanted to play the scene in a way that would further blur the lines of reality and imagination because she likes the idea of keeping fans guessing.
It works well in that scene and Aubrey confesses that her input has been integrated into other Legion scenes as well, allowing her to have some influence on Lenny’s evolution. The actress credits Legion creator Noah Hawley for encouraging her participation in developing Lenny.
“He’s very open to ideas and discussions with actors. I think that, for me, is what ultimately makes people great and not just good: people who allow other ideas to seep in and let things evolve,” Aubrey Plaza says of her Legion boss. “We found really early on that we liked working together, because he would write something weird and I would add another weirder thing and we would just build off of each other.”
The next episode of Legion airs on March 22 on FX.
[Featured Image by FX]