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The Librarians: 1.05 “And the Apple of Discord” Review

This week, Flynn returns to help the Librarians with dragons!

The dragons have woken up and are causing the usual earthquakes and geysers since they live under the Earth’s tectonic plates. Unfortunately Flynn’s ordering around the others is not okay with Eve (They’re a solid machine now.) and Ezekiel answered the door to the Eastern Dragon’s representative Mr. Drake (Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa)—yes, Drake—so now, he won’t talk to anyone else.

Awkward.

Also awkward is the totally stereotypical representation of Mr. Drake as the super-intensely brooding Japanese man. If there was a representative for the Western Dragons—even though Jenkins calls them thugs and hoarders—he’d probably be super likeable. Totally unnecessary.

And, it turns out that the Western Dragons have taken the Fei Lung’s (Eastern) Mystic Pearl of Zhou, and if it isn’t returned in twenty-four hours, the Fei Lung will retaliate.

Their blood feud with the Easterners is not unlike the hip-hop feud between the West and East Coast, so it’s kind of a dragon gang war.

“Like Rakim said, ‘I’m paid in full.’” Jenkins is a hip-hop fan!

Since Ezekiel can’t leave until he hears and deals with all of Mr. Drake’s grievances, the others go to the Vatican to find the Pearl. At the Vatican, Jake helps Cassandra through a set of memories so that they can get underground into the Western Dragon’s lair using the Fibonacci sequence on stones.

However, I’m not sure why Flynn is so surprised Cassandra didn’t lose control. Eve’s job was to train the others to work together. Then again, this episode is meant to highlight how far they’ve all come since Flynn’s absence, and I’m just nit-picking. Again a continuation of the development of Cassandra and Jake’s relationship even if Jake still doesn’t trust her.

Once they’re underground, Jake determines which pearl the real one by the box it’s in (each box had art on it), and grabs the pearl. Unfortunately, it possesses him, and he leaves the others with a Western Dragon speaking Latin, to go look at art at a museum.

If anything, watch the episode just for the huge dragon face. A+ special effects here.

Back at the Annex, Ezekiel isn’t having any luck either and thinking the pizza guy is there opens the door to multiple representatives of the supernatural world (i.e., jinn, fae, and others not mentioned) because Mr. Drake called a Conclave: the supernatural UN.

Dude, Ezekiel, why don’t you look to see whose outside before opening the door to anyone else? First you open and speak on behalf of the entire Library to Mr. Drake and then open the door to pretty much every-one ever. Parents everywhere are shaking their heads at the TV. I know my mom would have not been pleased.

We switch back to the Western Dragon, and it turns out that the Pearl wasn’t actually there. Dulaque took the real pearl and placed the fake one in Rome knowing that Drake would call for an intercession allowing for a Conclave to be called allowing for Dulaque to call for removing the Librarians as the arbiters of the Magical world.

Now—that’s a mouthful, but it’s a pretty well executed plan considering his ideas have failed the last few episodes.

Especially now that various characters have gotten their hands on the fake!Pearl which is actually the Apple of Discord.

You know, the one that caused the Trojan War?

The one that the goddess Eris inscribed “to the fairest” upon sparking a dispute between Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite.

In the myth, Eris had created the apple to cause havoc, and here, the characters who touch the Apple become the worst version of themselves: Jake is angry about art not being appreciated; Cassandra is angry about her cancer-induced math skills, which make her feel like a sci-fi robot (She even beats up Lamia for a bit using force ratios.); Eve wants a spa and wants people to just listen to her; and Flynn wants to take over the world since he’s so knowledgeable and can.

So, Flynn (and the others) show back up at the Annex where Dulaque is calling the vote to remove Ezekiel and the Library.

Jenkins distracts Flynn on his tirade about how he’s seen magic and having power is ridiculous so, sure, just get rid of the Library, and Ezekiel pickpockets the Apple, which—because he’s already the worst version of himself—has no effect on him. But, then, Flynn turns his tirade into a wonderful explanation of why the Library and Librarians are necessary, and everyone except Dulaque votes to keep the Library while Ezekiel explains how it was Drake and Dulaque that caused all this. This is actually a perfect way to allow any new viewers to feel like they haven’t missed too much of the franchise. Flynn describing the need for someone(s) to keep track of magic who ostensibly would be the good guys makes a lot of sense even though Dulaque looks totally confused by the mood change.

After that, all that’s left is for Dulaque and Jenkins to talk about their choices a thousand years ago back when they were “whatever [we] were.” (Immortal brothers? Friends? Lovers? Librarians? Immortal Librarian Brothers? I so want to know more about their relationship.)

Well, that and a Flynn offering a permanent job transfer to Eve and acknowledging that she has done a great job with the Librarians-in-Training. Afterall, Ezekiel and Jenkins even worked together at the end which no one was expecting at first.

Of course, Eve signs the paper and tells Flynn he has to leave. He still has to finish his mission which is to find the Library (and hopefully Judson and Charlene?) Huzzah! I like the status quo and think that Flynn and Eve fighting over what to do every episode would get old real fast. Then they kiss. The end for now.

I’m still not sure about their romance, and most of this episode just had me going “why”, but overall it wasn’t bad. The best moments were the scenes between Jenkins who has really not been a fan of the Librarians-in-Training (or Eve sometimes) being in his Annex–particularly Ezekiel, who Jenkins especially doesn’t like for being a thief.

Except Ezekiel being a thief is what saves the day causing Jenkins to realize having a Librarian who is also a thief isn’t so bad.

Cassandra, I felt, was played a bit over the top. I totally understand her anger at feeling like she’s just used by others and not being able to use her skills for more “practical” applications, but even that seems a bit hard to truly believe. Hasn’t she been using her skills for practical applications all season?

It was also super cool seeing the Conclave and the various members of the supernatural world even though we didn’t get to see who they all were.

Although, the joke about the Jinn’s representative having seven wives that he can’t keep happy at home was a perfect raise one eyebrow moment though, especially since Jinn are a part of Islamic belief, so it’s a not so subtle jab at Muslims with four wives and, unfortunately, a total departure from last week where Muslim protestors were shown in a good light.

On the other hand, the fae representative apparently has self-esteem issues, so I personally hope we get to see more of them in the future. Or, at least, more of their people.

Still—for an episode meant to highlight characters we probably won’t see more of until second season—hopefully, we get one—it was pretty great.

Next week should also be a fun interpretive episode since fairy tales are coming to life and destroying yet another city.

Grade: B-


Image courtesy of TNT

Seher
Written By

Seher obsesses over show ratings and usually writes about media representation issues. Otherwise, she's reading away for her graduate program in anthropology.

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