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Explaining Legion's Strange Connection to Pink Floyd

Dan Stevens and Rachel Keller discuss the show's references to the popular English rock band

Kaitlin Thomas

What do Legion and Pink Floyd have in common?

Well, on the surface the answer is not much. However, when the X-Men-related drama debuts next month, fans of the influential English rock band will likely notice that a character played by Rachel Keller shares a name, Syd Barrett, with one of the founding members of the band, a connection the actress says she was left on her own to interpret.

"It was never discussed. [I was] sort of on my own to figure out and kind of research [who he was] and interpret [the connection] the way I wanted to," Keller tells TVGuide.com.

Legion: How the show will and won't be like the comics

After contributing to the band's debut album -- and even coining the name Pink Floyd -- Barrett left the band in 1968 among speculation that he was suffering from mental illness, specifically schizophrenia, something his family has long denied. The theme of potential misdiagnosis appears in Legion, too. Both Keller and Dan Stevens play characters with incredible powers who are initially institutionalized because they've been diagnosed as having a mental illness.

But the name Syd Barrett and the subject of mental illness aren't the show's only connections to Pink Floyd.

"I know [series creator] Noah [Hawley] and Jeff Russo, our composer, used the soundscape for [Dark Side of the Moon] as inspiration for the soundscape for our show," says Keller. "It's really nice to look at what they're inspired by because it just helps you see more clearly the story that you're telling."

Legion won't feature your favorite X-Men characters (yet)

"I'm still convinced if you play the pilot and Dark Side of the Moon simultaneously something will happen," jokes Stevens.

Legion premieres Wednesday, Feb. 8 at 10/9c on FX.