Let me start out by saying, I love The Librarians. It is my favorite new show this season.
I had never seen the movies but I knew they existed. I wasn’t super interested in the show outside of the fact that some of the same people that made Leverage (which I also loved…enough to name my daughter after one of the characters) created it and that it also starred Christian Kane. I figured I would check it out when it started but I didn’t have extremely high hopes for it. Mostly because I don’t have high hopes for any TV show in general anymore. However..
It’s an awesome show. Much in the same vein as Leverage, It’s pure fun. It has moments of emotion but never dwells to long on the sad or sentimental. It’s a ride. It’s not always the most exciting ride, some episodes are rollercoasters, some are ferris wheels and some are that ride where you pretend to drive cars on a loop around the outside of the park looking at trees and watching people waiting in line. They’re the cool down rides that you take when you need a break from excitement.
Each episode has a title similar to the films. The first episode is The Librarians and the Crown of King Arthur. Its part one of a two parter the second of which is The Librarians and the Sword in the Stone. It’s a good beginning. It introduces all the main characters including Flynn Carsen, THE Librarian who is featured in the films. Along with Flynn they introduce Colonel Eve Baird, who is invited by the Library to be Flynn’s new Guardian after crossing paths with him in Berlin. Baird and Flynn uncover a plot to kill all the potential Librarians (which reminds me of a horrible story line from the end of Buffy the Vampire Slayer…but they do it much better and less drawn out here). Together they track down the remaining potential Librarians.
Cassandra is a math genius and synesthete working as a janitor in New York. Jacob Stone is an employee on an oil rig in Oklahoma that writes books on art history under a pseudonym and speaks pretty much all of the languages fluently (except, he says, urdu). Ezekiel Jones is a thief (who seems to be barely out of his teens even though he was invited to be a Librarian 10 year ago?) that Flynn intercepts trying to steal a jewel in Geneva. They go back with Flynn and Baird to the library in New York to figure out who is trying to kill them and why.
This two part premiere is definitely a rollercoaster. It moves fast and has everything from bombs, to ninjas and lots of magic of course. The end featuring a promise of lots more magic. It IS largely used to set up the rest of the series but its a fun ride on its own.
After the premiere Flynn is no longer a starring character and Baird, Stone, Cassandra and Ezekiel take center stage. Flynn is a fun character, with flavors of the 10th Doctor (right down to his Converse sneakers), but he often over powers the other Librarians. They get the chance to shine all on their own in the third episode The Librarians and the Horns of a Dilemma. And they continue to mostly work without Flynn. Although he shows up on and off still…when things get particularly apocolypticy (its a word now..hush).
The show has it’s high points, the fairy tale inspired The Librarians and The Fables of Doom being my favorite, and its low points, the most boring of which being the Baird-less The Librarians and the City of Light (which is unfortunate since it could have been a great time for the Librarians to really shine without Flynn or Baird), but even the most seemingly pointless of them serve a purpose. Everything is relevant in the end. The season comes full circle with The Librarians and the Loom of Fate. Which features another return of Flynn and is largely centered around him and Baird.
The Librarians first season is one of the most cohesive, well written and enjoyable shows that I have seen in a long time. It was just announced today that the show has been renewed for a second season. Which eased my anxiety about it getting canceled before it got the chance to really show off what it can do. I think the second season should be really promising and I’m looking forward to seeing what direction they take with it after the season finale which changed things up a bit.
The Librarians airs on TNT. I don’t believe they are currently airing reruns, though and they haven’t announced the time slot or premiere date for Season Two. You can currently purchase episodes of the show on Amazon Instant Video and iTunes. The films are also available on Amazon and iTunes.