The Librarians Season 3 Review

  • Series Title: The Librarians
  • Season: Season 3
  • Episodes: 10
  • Discs: 3
  • Network: TNT
  • Cast: Noah Wyle, John Larroquette, Rebecca Romijn, Christian Kane, Lindy Booth, John Harlan Kim, David S. Lee
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC, R1

The Librarians is a fun and light adventure series from TNT and producer/creator Dean Devlin. It’s always enjoyable and the third season is no exception. Noah Wyle, who always brings an extra spark to the show is present in eight of the ten episodes, which brings this season to life. Also, The Librarians avoids the money-saving pitfall of other programs with a small ensemble cast and doesn’t split them up for episodes at a time. Instead, the younger Librarians, who are now seasoned professionals, are together in every episode. Rather than an advisor who drops by occasionally, Flynn is their mentor, and even Jenkins gets into the action occasionally (he gets to sword fight!).

The first episode sets up the season, as Apap, an Egyptian demi-god is released from his sarcophagus. He can possess people and turn them to his will. Apap’s ultimate goal, though, is to release ultimate evil into the world, preferably by destroying The Library. Later, Flynn Carson will obtain the Eye of Ra which can defeat Apap, but it requires a human sacrifice to work. In the season finale, Flynn plans to sacrifice himself to defeat Apap and restore the Library.

During the season, Charlene, whom we learn is the original Guardian, and whom Jenkins loves deeply, though she loves someone else, goes missing. When she is found in Shangri-la, she ends-up having to sever her connection to the library. Charlene goes beyond the mirror, with Judson. Flynn and Jenkins take it very hard. Charlene’s sacrifice strengthens Flynn’s resolve to sacrifice himself to defeat Apap.

The secondary bad guy for the season is DOSA, the Department of Statistical Anomalies, a “secret government agency” whose goal is to collect artifacts, guard them with technology, and find and destroy the Library and the Librarians. It’s such an old conspiracy plot. And DOSA reminds me of ARGUS in DC Comics, especially as the head of DOSA is an African–American woman, Gen. Cynthia Rockwell, Baird’s old mentor, and commander. As usual, DOSA has no idea how dangerous the artifacts are, though Eve’s well-played betrayal turns out to be double-edged as she and Flynn planned it as a trap for Apap.

The individual stories, however, are considerable fun. The first story introduces the villain and themes of the season. The second is a classic base-under-siege story with werewolves. The third, “The Librarians and the Reunion of Evil” was one of my favorites so far in the series. I loved the frost giants! The “Self-Fulfilling Prophecy” was a timey-whimy adventure in Greek Myth, and I enjoyed it immensely. The carnival episode felt like a Ray Bradbury story. I thought it was very unique that the show combined the Bermuda Triangle with Alice in Wonderland, in episode 6, this is also where Flynn gets the Eye of Ra and the entire episode is beautifully shot. “The Curse of Cindy” was the only episode of the season I didn’t care for. But in episode 9, Shangri-la was beautiful and provided a necessary element for the finale. The day-walking vampires who simply wanted to exist was a new take on “good guy” vampires. Overall, like previous seasons, Season 3 is simply fun, and light, and enjoyable to watch. The team has come together well, and it was great seeing Noah Wyle in nearly every episode. Highly recommended.

One odd note, Christian Kane, as Jacob Stone, seemed perpetually angry all season long, and delivered his dialogue in a husky undertone like he was about to explode in anger. It was weird and disconcerting. But that was the only negative of the season.

See also My Review of Season 2 of The Librarians.

See also My Review of Season 1 of The Librarians.

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The Librarians Season 2 Review

  • Series Title: The Librarians
  • Season: Season 2
  • Episodes: 10
  • Discs: 3
  • Network: TNT
  • Cast: Noah Wyle, John Larroquette, Rebecca Romijn, Christian Kane, Lindy Booth, John Harlan Kim, David S. Lee, Richard Cox
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC, R1

The second season of TNT’s The Librarians brings back Noah Wyle for the first two episodes and the last two episodes. The series is a sequel to the Librarian movies, and the first two episodes play like one of the movies, as the Librarians are reunited with Eve and Flynn for four separate quests at a museum only to have to face down Moriarty, a Fictional, and Prospero – Shakespeare’s magician. Prospero is determined to change his fate and not follow the story as written by Shakespeare.

Unfortunately, we really don’t see Prospero or Moriarty until the last two episodes of the season, which also bring back Noah Wyle as Flynn, the Librarian. The opening and closing two-parters are great, and could even be viewed together, without watching the intervening episodes. The stand-alone stories, featuring the younger Librarians are hit-or-miss. John Larroquette is wonderful as Jenkins, caretaker of the Annex, and with the library back – now the Library as well. The first episode without Noah Wyle gives us background on Stone and his issues with his father (a real piece of work). “The Cost of Education” could have been a fun HP Lovecraft-type story – instead it’s full of stereotypes about college life. Not only that but the young, gifted, highly intelligent woman – very like Cassandra, is talked into leaving university and pursuing magic – without even being a librarian. It was an annoying episode. The episode, “And the Hollow Men” brings back Flynn, but has a strange quality to it. As you can tell from the title, “And the Infernal Contract” is a tale of Faust or the Devil and Daniel Webster set during a mayoral race in a small New England town. “The Image of the Image” is a fun version of the story of Dorian Gray, though, like the previous episode, it was painfully obvious where it was going from the beginning. “And the Point of Salvation” was extremely fun – from Jenkins actually casting a spell to call and bind the fairy Puck (fitting in nicely with the Shakespearean theme of the season) to Jones and Stone binding over figuring out the video game they are stuck in – it’s much more unique than many of the other stand-alone episodes of the season. I also loved the growth in Jones’ character, though they punched the reset button on that at the end of the episode.

The final two episodes bring back Moriarty and Prospero – not to mention a trip through time, and Shakespeare. It’s the type of fun the show is known for and was so prevalent in Season 1. Eve and Flynn also have great chemistry in the episode. And I loved the cameo of the TARDIS and the Back to the Future DeLorean in the time machine room.

Overall, though I enjoyed season 2, Prospero was such a great villain I wish we’d seen more of him. And Moriarty was written and played brilliantly as not the epitome of evil, but a complicated man trapped by his circumstances. I’d still recommend the series though.

Read my Review of the Librarians Season 1.

The Librarians Season 1 Review

  • Series Title: The Librarians
  • Season: Season 1
  • Episodes: 10
  • Discs: 3
  • Network: TNT
  • Cast: Noah Wyle, John Larroquette, Rebecca Romijn, Christian Kane, Lindy Booth, John Harlan Kim, Matt Frewer
  • Format: Color, Widescreen, NTSC, R1

TNT’s The Librarians is the sequel series to three made-for-TV movies starring Noah Wyle. I have reviewed those films on this blog please see links below.

The first episode of The Librarians plays like another “The Librarian” TV Movie, as Noah Wyle returns as the Librarian, Flynn Carsen, working out of The Library hidden beneath New York’s Metropolitan Library, and home to a collection of hidden knowledge and magical artifacts. Flynn meets Eve Baird, his new Guardian. They discover someone is killing off potential Librarians, and gather together three people who were also meant to become Librarians: Jake Stone – a oil rigger with a 160 IQ with an encyclopedic knowledge of art history, architecture, and related areas; Cassandra Cillian – a woman who’s brain tumor makes her both a synesthetic (someone who sees numbers as colors; or associates complicated formulas with smells) and a genius at math; and Ezekiel Jones – a thief. Together, Flynn, Eve, and his new Librarians try to stop the Serpent Brotherhood, led by Dulaque (Matt Frewer) from using Excalibur and the Stone to release magic into the world. They fail. Eve is nearly killed, Cassandra betrays everyone then comes back to the fold when she realizes her mistake, magic is released, and Dulaque escapes. However, all is not lost, Flynn survives, Charlene and Judson release the Library into Space and Time to prevent Dulaque from taking it or destroying it, and Flynn realizes he’s going to need help from his new recruits. He turns them over to Jenkins at the Library Annex to solve mysteries and capture magical artifacts, and leaves to find the Library.

The new team, under Jenkins, works to find and return to the Annex dangerous magical artifacts, and to help people threatened by the newly released magic in the world. From a town threatened by fairy tales, to the Minotaur, to helping Santa bring good will back to the world, the Librarians travel far and wide, helping people and putting down magical threats. The episodes seem to be self-contained however, every story brings them an element that ends up being extremely important to the final episode of the season. In the final story, Flynn returns again, and they attempt to bring back The Library. Dulaque arrives, kills his assistant Lamia, and opens a door to the River of Time and the Loom of Fate. Dulaque cuts the Threads of the Loom. Eve and an alternate non-Librarian version of Flynn must find a way to stop Dulaque. The leap from reality to reality finding alternate Librarian versions of the Librarians: Cassandra – a powerful magic user from a world filled with dragons; Jones – a scientist in a world where most of the population has been turned into ghosts; and Stone – the Librarian. Eve and these alternate versions must find a way to repair the Loom, stop Dulaque, and prevent Eve’s death. Along the way, we discover Jenkins’ secret past, as well as Dulaque’s “real” identity.

The Librarians is a fun, light, enjoyable series. It has magic and adventure, and for the most part no one is really ever harmed. Noah Wylie appears periodically through the series, and the episodes are always better when he’s there. However, the Librarians and their Guardian form a D&D-type adventuring group: The Soldier (Eve Baird), the Thief (Ezekiel Jones), The Scientist/Mathematician (Cassandra Cillian – rather than a Magician); and the Historian/Art Expert (Jones Stone). It’s a slightly more modern version of D&D heroes. Recommended.