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Psych Ward

Psych Ward: Legion

Marvel.com's therapist attempts to put together the pieces of a fractured psyche

By Tim Stevens David Haller, also known as Legion, is a young adult male who has been identified as a mutant. Due in part to periods of catatonia, Haller was typically underweight for his age and height. It would be the expectation of the writer that this remains the case given the subject's recent history. More often than not, the subject's interactions with others are stilted and uncomfortable. They may be characterized by abnormal speech patterns, failure to meet or hold eye contact, repetitive or ritualistic movements, and an inability to properly read facial or body language cues. These difficulties are caused by Haller's diagnosis of autism. It is unlikely that the subject has received much, if any, treatment for his disorder, so one should expect him to still manifest these behaviors and might do so to a higher degree than what has been seen before.

Complicating matters further is that Haller has also been diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). While there was some indication before his supposed death that his personalities had been fully integrated, it is impossible to know for sure if that is the case. Prior to this apparent integration, the subject demonstrated three major alters (in addition to his base personality) and each demonstrated a different power set. There was a defiant young female personality who possessed pyrokinesis, an adventurous adult male personality who was telekinetic, and the personality of a terrorist that Haller had absorbed during an incident that initially ignited his mutant gift; that last alter demonstrated telepathic abilities. When the integration seemed to take place, it appeared as though the subject had retained all of these abilities. Given the complicated nature of his manifestation of this disorder, it is possible that he has developed other personalities since and that they might have other abilities as well. He may also not demonstrate some of the above mentioned autistic behaviors, depending on which alter is currently dominant. Given this, encounters with the subject will often by unpredictable and any kind of negotiation will be difficult to rely on as alters may come up and recede with little to no warning. Haller's emotional state might also be problematic. In addition to the burden of negotiating life with DID, the subject grew up without a father as his, Professor Charles Xavier, was unaware of Haller's existence. As such, any encounter with any of Xavier's

students or members of the X-Men might be difficult for the subject to process. He might demonstrate bitterness, rage, sadness, or even shut down emotionally. However, Haller has also demonstrated compassion for his estranged father and that bond might still exist. If so, it may be a means to force the subject's base personality to the surface and give it control enough to cease any sort of hostile actions he had heretofore been engaged in. Finally, please take into consideration that it is unknown what exactly happened to Haller after what was believed to be his death. Whatever did occur could have affected his mind in small or severe ways, for positive or negative. The fact is, while it is expected he will present similarly to how he has in the past, this is not guaranteed. He could be more helpful and in control or more aggressive and wild than ever before. It would be the recommendation of this writer to do whatever possible to discern his current mental state before deciding on any course of action when interacting with him.

For further writings on David Haller, please seek out the periodical NEW MUTANTS #2, prepared by Doctors Zeb Wells and Diogenes Neves, and available on June 3. Tim Stevens is a Mental Health Supervisor currently pursuing his Psy D. Not a subscriber to Marvel Digital Comics Unlimited yet? Join now! Check out the official Marvel Shop for everything X-Men! Download episodes of X-Men: Evolutionicon now on iTunes!
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