Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The Librarians, Season Two, Episode Eight: And the Point of Salvation

A top secret military lab is working on creating an advanced computer using technology from Atlantis. It not long before the scientist find themselves way in over their head and are forced to call for the evacuation of the facility.

Back at the library, Jenkins summons a fey to ask three questions. When the fey realies that ze is dealing with a knight, ze offers to tell Jenkins how he can die. Jenkins is momentarily distracted but decides instead to find out more information regarding Prospero and his plans.

In the main Library, the clipping book opens up and leads the librarians to the military base.  Eve issues a strict warning about what will be acceptable behaviour and takes care to inform Jones that he is not to take souvenirs.

Once at the base, it's not long before the Librarians find themselves in a time loop a la Ground Hog Day. Jones tries to explain to the rest of the team but they don't take him seriously.  Clearly, it's now Jones's chance to have his own episode to show what he is all about. They go through loop after loop and each time, Jones has to watch the members of the team die.  Each time they return to the beginning, Jones once again explains about the loop and each time the team is incredulous. Watching the Librarians die is beginning to tear Jones apart. In frustration, he takes a bat and starts destroying items in the reset room.  It's then that a help box suddenly appears.  Jones then realises that they aren't actually in a time loop but are in fact caught inside a video game.  Every time one of the librarians dies, they return to the reset area and have to start all over again.

Ezekiel goes through the game several more times and continues to return to the reset area with the Librarians.  Each time he has watched his friends die and it tears him apart. Finally, Jones locks the Librarians in a room and decides that he is going to play the game by himself so that he doesn't have to watch his friends die anymore.  In each stage, Jones yanks out a member of his team to teach him the different aspects he needs to move forward.  The team become impressed with the sacrifices that Jones has makes for them.  Eve even tells Jones a story in which she implies that he is the bravest man she has ever known.  This is a truly touching moment.

The situation turns critical and Jones realises that this time a death is going to matter because the game is going to go into reset.  Jones helps the team move through the game and ends up sacrificing his life for them to live.  Jones has never been my favourite character but I must admit that in this moment I was sad.  I guess Jones has grown on me far more than I realised.  In the end, the team come together to save Jones but because of the game reset, he has no memory of everything he went through to save everyone.

Back at the Library, Jones is still very much in disbelief that he did the things that he was told that he did. Jones is certain that this is out of character, leaving the group to finally tell him that it doesn't matter that he doesn't remember but what matters is that they now know who he is.

The fae is back from his spying mission on Prospero and tells Jenkins that Prospero is going to attack now.  Jenkins goes rushing back into the main library in a panic and we see a wave of what I assume is magic.  Jenkins then picks up a book and forgets the matter that sent him into the main area in the first place.

I cannot believe that the writers are already reduced to a time loop episode when it's only season two. Are they running out of idea already or stories to steal from?  The only good thing about this cheesy set up is that we got to see a different side to Jones.  From his introduction, Jones has been comic relief and nothing more than wise cracking thief who is occasionally useful.  This time we got to see that at least some of this is an act and that he very much cares about the rest of the scooby team.  My kudos to John Kim because he really sold this and I very much believed his torment at having to watch the team die repeatedly.

It absolutely was a kindness that Jones had his memories removed at the end of the episode.  It must have been traumatic to watch people that you care for die repeatedly. It is worth noting however that despite all of the death, it wasn't bloody or gory making it all so very sanitized.  Had John Kim not sold this as well as he did, this episode wouldn't have worked at all.

We learned that Jones really cares about his fellow Librarians and that much of what we have seen thus far is bravado.  It seems that he is also hurt that despite his skill, the other Librarians and Eve don't seem to respect him.  He wants his skill to be seen and he wants to be thought of as a valuable member of the team.  Even more than that however he wants to be friends with the Librarians and Eve he has come to see the Library as home - a home perhaps for the first time in his life.  As much as we learned how Jones feels about the scooby team, I do wish we had learned more about his personal history beyond the fact that he is a thief and loves pranks.

Okay Jenkins break. You know I have to bring him up because he is my favourite character. This episode we learn that there's a method for Jenkins to die.  Slowly but surely we are learning more about Jenkins.