Wednesday, December 21, 2016

The Librarians, Season 3, Episode 5: And the Tears of a Clown

I’m not a fan of this episode. It had a rather heavy handed, trite message and not a great deal of character development. Oh we have some useful moments – a reminder that DOSA still exists (remember them?). And the concept that new Artefacts are being created and they have to build a whole new wing of the Library to house them. After all the ancient Artefacts are ancient because magic hasn’t been in the world for a gazillion years. Now magic is back – so new Artefacts can join the fun. This makes a lot of sense and also adds a whole new dimension of stories to open up.

We also have a really wonderful moment where Eve tries to keep Jenkins out of trouble because with the big bad darkness coming (which we seem to have lost for a few episodes) if the Librarians are taken out she can think of no better person to save the world than him – which I definitely agree to. But he also says there’s no way he would ever not come from her

Because he’s awesome, she’s awesome and they're so very awesome together

Ezekiel’s abs are also awesome which is pretty much the last awesome thing about this episode

They are amazingly awesome though

Anyway, we have a guy who has got his hands on one of these shiny new Artefacts and he promptly uses it to magically create a carnival. Anyone who objects to sudden carnivalness is brainwashed to become clown minions, fanpoodles or jugglers all declaring it to be the best thing in the world as well as causing themselves severe injury through over juggling.

You already know you’re dealing with a disturbing personality who wants to live in an eternal carnival and doesn’t think he’s in a lower circle of hell. And there’s some powerful magic at work that can have you live off carnie food for more than a month and not just die from horrendous health complications.

So, beyond a disturbing love of clowns and candy floss, why does this magically powerful man decide to spend his life in a carnival?

Because when he was an awkward teenaged boy he had a crush on a teenaged girl who liked carnivals so clearly creating an awesome carnival will make her love him forever.

Unsurprisingly, tricking someone into a place full of creepy clowns and hoping slapstick and sideshows and random violence will win the heart of this grown woman who doesn’t even remember him (after hospitalising a few women who had the misfortune to share the same name) doesn’t actually go so well.

Of course the Librarians defeat and remove the magical artefact, depowering big bad guy but not before we get the meaning of the episode…

Charlotte (stalked woman) totally did remember him and even liked him and would have gone out with him but then he turned into a carnival obsessed potential serial killing which was a real relationship killer. So the lesson is… don’t obsessively stalk a woman because she may like you anyway? I guess. There is a sad sense that this is forward thinking because so many romantic tropes present obsessive stalking as a key to eternal love…. I guess

But really I think a far better ending would have been that it was a bad idea to stalk and kidnap and terrorise women EVEN IF they would never have loved you. I mean “it was stupid to do this because she would have loved you anyway” is a dubious moral since we’re still centering his wish: his stalker-serial-killer-thing has to be ironically wrong because she totally would have been into him anyway. How about she was his friend, they apparently had fun together – but this is bad because she doesn’t want a romantic relationship with him? Or how about, even if she would never ever willingly share the same state with him, it’s still not ok to sentence people to eternal carnivals? Look I’m not saying that the show didn’t depict the mind controlling nonsense as bad, but we don’t need to reinforce that badness by saying he would have been rewarded with a relationship if he had done the right thing. The right choice doesn’t have to be reinforced with a woman as a gold star or prize.

All in all, fairly dull. But Ezekiel has awesome abs.