"And the Fables of Doom" is the sixth episode of the first season of The Librarians. It aired on January 4, 2015.
There are roadworks at a bridge and cars are forced to slow down. An angry truck driver decides to speed through it. Barely avoiding another car, he gets to the other side of the bridge. Suddenly a huge hand grabs his car, and he gets thrown of the bridge.
The clippings book informs the Librarians of strange happenings in the town of Bremen, including the truck accident. Eve, Jacob, Cassandra, and Ezekiel go to Bremen to investigate, although Ezekiel is skeptical. They wonder how they'll convince the locals to help them, and discuss the fact that on TV, the explanation for weird things always seems to be "swamp gas". The team introduces themselves to Sheriff Heyer, claiming that they are from the Metropolitan Library and are there to do a traffic flow study. The Sheriff buys this explanation and tells them about the accident. After Ezekiel insults the town and annoys the Sheriff, Baird gets frustrated with him and tells him not to taunt local law enforcement.
They arrive at the wreck of the truck, and Cassandra recognizes a pattern on the window, but can't make out what it is. When Stone sprays it with a fire extinguisher, the pattern becomes clear and they realize it is a giant fingerprint. Speaking to them via iPad from the Annex, Jenkins explains it might be a troll, and warns them that trolls are dangerous, but are subdued in daylight. He asks them to obtain a picture or a sample of the troll in order to identify the species.
Baird sends Stone and Cassandra to find out if there was any surveillance footage of the crash, and brings a reluctant Ezekiel with her to investigate the area around the bridge. While they search for any signs of a troll, Baird tells Ezekiel that he needs to take the job seriously if he wants to be a Librarian. He replies that he's in the job for fun, and that if he gets bored, he's out. Their conversation is interrupted by the discovery of the troll, which is frozen in stone during daylight. Eve sends Ezekiel to retrieve some samples.
Meanwhile, Cassandra thanks Stone for being willing to work with her after her betrayal of the team. Stone says he is fine working with her, but he does not trust her. Cassandra asks if there is a chance for her to earn that trust. Stone says he is fine with how it is. The two meet the Sheriff, but their discussion is interrupted by the naked Mayor, out for a jog. The Mayor believes he is wearing his new jogging outfit, a birthday present from his wife. The Mayor runs off and Stone and Cassandra asks the Sheriff if there have been any other unusual events recently. The Sheriff mentions a number of odd things that have happened, including a girl going missing, talking animals in a local barn, and a woman getting stuck in her pizza oven.
The team meets up again, and Eve and Ezekiel tell the other two about the troll. Cassandra and Jacob start to explain that there is more going on, but before they can go into detail, they see a huge wolf running through the streets. The wolf starts to attack a woman, and when the Sheriff and his man freeze, Jacob grabs an axe off of a fire truck and throws it at the wolf, killing it. Ezekiel asks him where he learned that and Jacob says he does not know. They notice that the wolf is wearing a frilly nightcap, and realize that the strange events in town are being caused by fairy tales coming to life.
With Jenkins' help, they narrow down the list of artifacts that could cause the situation to two: the Mother Goose Treaty of 1918, and Aesop's lyre. Jenkins asks them to retrieve the dead wolf in order to do an autospy on it, and the team returns to Bremen, where they find out that the wolf is being stored in the back freezer of Walter's Tavern. While Ezekiel and Jacob try to sneak the wolf out of the tavern, Eve and Cassandra distract Walter, and discuss the strain between Cassandra and Jacob. The girls at the bar seem to be particularly interested in Cassandra, and Cassandra notices that Eve's hair is down. The boys manage to get the wolf out of the tavern, and find a truck that the owner has left unlocked, with the key in it. How very lucky for Ezekiel.
Ezekiel and Jacob bring the wolf to the Annex, where Jenkins helps them with the autopsy. They realize the night cap is part of the wolf. When Jacob cuts the wolf open there is a young woman, Liza, in it, still alive. She was the girl who had gone missing on her way to the music festival. Jenkins realizes that the artifact causing the changes is actually the Libris Fabula, which had previously been crossed off the list as it was believed to have been lost. The Libris Fabula is a story book that can bring any story to life, but at a cost. It is revealed the stories are being read by a man to a sick girl.
The team brings Liza to the hospital, where Eve and Ezekiel pretend they found her in the woods, and claim her story is due to trauma from exposure. Liza doesn't remember anything, and completely ignores Jacob in favour of Cassandra, even asking for her number. Meanwhile, the Sheriff mentions the wolf got stolen after Ezekiel was at the bar. Ezekiel taunts him and says he is overworked, causing the Sheriff, who seems to be changing, to say that Ezekiel is trouble.
Jenkins meets them in the hospital waiting area and explains the Libris Fabula to them: it starts by bringing the stories already within it to life, but as it gets more powerful, new stories can be added or old ones can be rewritten by the person reading the book, and they can overtake entire nations. It feeds off the people affected by the stories--in the past, it caused the Black Death. Jenkins suggests they look for people who have gotten mysteriously ill or died. While Jenkins and Cassandra go to investigate the hospital records, Eve and Jacob head to the Bremen Library to see if they can track down any leads on the book itself. As they're leaving, Ezekiel manages to trigger the coin return in a vending machine to dump out coins like a slot machine, and an exasperated Eve tells him to stay out of jail.
During their investigation, Jenkins and Cassandra find a number of unusual occurences, but no unusual illnesses or deaths. As all of the fairy tale-inspired cases have happened within the past few weeks, Cassandra suggests that the Libris Fabula must have only just started building its power. When she mentions that it's good that the stories are only fairy tales, Jenkins explains that the stories in the Libris Fabula are the original, darker versions of the stories, "full of death and dismemberment", and that the major roles that had not yet been filled are often the ones with the most horrible fates.
Eve and Jacob go to the Bremen Library and ask the librarian, Mr. McGuire, about some very old books they notice. He tells them that he is cataloguing Thompson Deter's collection of books. Jacob recognizes the name as being a rare book collector, and Mr. McGuire informs them that Mr. Deter had died a few weeks back, leaving his collection to Mr. McGuire to catalogue. They offer to help him with the cataloguing, as they are librarians themselves, but he declines and locks the books away. Eve and Jacob realize they'll need Ezekiel to break into the library and search for the Libris Fabula.
Back at the hospital Ezekiel follows a moving coin into a hospital room and meets the sick girl who was being read to earlier, Jamie. She is dying. Ezekiel teaches her how to pick locks so she can get herself pudding and not have to eat green jello, and she reveals that no one knows why she's sick, but that she'd fallen asleep during story hour at the local library. When she mentions that she loves fairy tales, Ezekiel starts looking for the book, but she tells him that they aren't kept there, and that she's only allowed visitors on reading days. Ezekiel says that he'll be back, and leaves the coin with her for luck.
The team gets together at the bar, where the local women are trying to flirt with Cassandra. Eve and Jacob tell the others about the books at the library, and Cassandra says that they need to get the book before it can do any real damage, but Ezekiel says that they need to go to the hospital first as he thinks Jamie is involved. Before they come to a decision, Sheriff Heyer arrives and handcuffs Ezekiel, informing the others that Jamie is his daughter and Ezekiel had broken into her hospital room and taught her how to pick locks. While Eve tries to reason with the Sheriff, Ezekiel frees himself from the handcuffs. Infuriated, the Sheriff transforms into a big, bad wolf-man and huffs and puffs and blows the windows out of the bar.
The team escapes the tavern through a side door and flee the transformed Sheriff and the local football team, the Wolves, who are also transforming. While they're hiding, the team realizes they're becoming the archetypes previously mentioned by Jenkins: Eve is turning into a Princess, with long hair and a tendency to sing unexpectedly; Jacob is becoming the Huntsman, with an axe appearing in his hand and an owl settling on his arm; and Cassandra is becoming Prince Charming, attracting attention from the local women. They call Jenkins, who confirms their suspicions and reminds them that not only are they not guaranteed happy endings, but that bystanders could get hurt. He says that the only one who tends to escape stories unscathed is the Jack, the lucky thief who lives by his wits. At this point, they realize that Ezekiel has vanished. As Eve, Jacob, and Cassandra walk through town, they see that more and more townspeople are becoming fairy tale characters--meaning the book is getting stronger. When their plan to get everyone out of town is foiled by a giant wall of thorny vines springing up around the town, they decide to head back to the library, but take the civilians with them. Cassandra, as Prince Charming, leads the way, but the wolves start tracking them to the library.
Ezekiel goes back to Jamie's room, where he finds Mr. McGuire reading her the story, and discovers that Jamie won't wake up. When Ezekiel says the book is killing her and that Mr. McGuire has to stop, the librarian says that he knows exactly what he's doing. Ezekiel tries to grab the book, however, the old man grabs his wrist and throws him away with superhuman power. Mr. McGuire explains that while the book drains the person being read to, the person reading it gets stronger. His plan for his own "happily ever after" is to drain the town and regain his youth, and he starts the story again, setting the wolves after the other Librarians.
In the library, Jacob, Cassandra and Eve, now nearly fully transformed into the archetypes, hide the citizens and prepare to defend them against the wolves. Eve calls Ezekiel, who tells her about Mr. McGuire, Jamie, and the book, and she tells him he's the Jack, with the power of luck, and that he needs to stop Mr. McGuire from reading the story. The wolves break in and Cassandra stands on the table and gives a rousing speech as they prepare to fight them. Eve starts to look more like a princess and is charmed by Cassandra, but Jacob gets her to snap out of it. Jacob engages the wolves with his axe and fights the Sheriff in single combat. Cassandra uses a table leg to fight the wolves. Eve struggles with her fight, thrown off by the sudden appearance of high heels. She tells Ezekiel to change the story.
Ezekiel grabs the book and says the wolves are now blind, which instantly happens. Mr. McGuire throws him away again and says that isn't a story, and that the wolves are going to kill his friends. The wolves quickly overpower the team and Jacob starts losing his fight against the transformed Sheriff Heyer. Just as it seems that the wolves have won, Ezekiel grabs the coin he'd left with Jamie and throws it. It takes a number of very lucky bounces and hits Mr. McGuire, magically freezing him in place. When Ezekiel takes the book from him and gives it to Jamie, she wakes up and Mr. McGuire is sucked into the book. Ezekiel encourages her to change the story and come up with one of her own to save his team.
Jamie uses her imagination to transform the team again: Jacob becomes a robot, while Eve becomes a ninja princess and Cassandra turns into Merlin in disguise. They quickly defeat Sheriff Heyer and the football players, and Jamie says that the head wolf has to pay for his crimes--by eating green jello. Everyone's transformations wear off, and the team finds the Sheriff sitting in an aisle of the library, surrounded by cups of green jello.
As the Librarians prepare to leave town, they explain the entire thing away as "swamp gas", assuring Sheriff Heyer that they've taken care of the situation. Ezekiel shows up with Jamie, now fully healthy, and her father is so happy to have her back that he decides not to press Ezekiel for an explanation. The two of them watch the Librarians leave, and after Jamie asks her dad who they were, he realizes that "they're librarians" doesn't actually make any sense as an explanation for the events of the day.
The team returns to the Annex, where Jenkins has collected the rest of Thompson Deter's collection as well as the Libris Fabula. The magical book is revealed to be blank except for a drawing of the Mr. McGuire, trapped inside its pages. Jacob says that the more they experience magic, the weirder it seems to get. Cassandra says she didn't mind having all the women buying her drinks. Eve says she likes having her hair back to normal. They ask Ezekiel if he felt different, but he says that he just felt like his usual awesome self. When they push him on that, saying that he saved the day, he points out that everyone tells him that he can't just rely on luck, but when they all got transformed into legendary heroes, he was just turned into himself.
Annoyed, Eve and Jacob leave to blow off some steam with the punching bag. Ezekiel tells Cassandra that it's really them who are lucky, because they get to know him, and leaves as well. Alone in the Annex, Cassandra holds her hand up to reveal a ball of magical light. She smiles and gently blows it away.
- Rebecca Romijn as Eve Baird
- Christian Kane as Jacob Stone
- Lindy Booth as Cassandra Cillian
- John Kim as Ezekiel Jones
- John Larroquette as Jenkins
- Rene Auberjonois as Mr. McGuire
- Ted Rooney as Sheriff Heyer
- Sophia Mitri Schloss as Jamie Heyer
- Eric Ray Anderson as Walter
- Joanne Spracklen as Bo Peep
- Kate Alden as Liza
- Gary Kraus as Naked Mayor
- Aparna Brielle as Flirty Waitress
- Chrisse Roccaro as Arguing Woman
- Brendan Quinlan as Arguing Man
- The external shots, library scenes and some others were filmed in Estacada, Oregon.
- The river at the beginning of the episode is the same river from "And the Loom of Fate".
- Goof: When the Mayor jogs up to the Sheriff as Stone and Cassandra are talking to him, underwear on the Mayor can momentarily be seen in shot.
- Fairy tales referenced over the course of the episode include:
- The Three Billy Goats (the cars, truck, and troll at the beginning)
- The Emperor’s New Clothes (the mayor’s new “jogging suit”)
- Little Red Riding Hood (the girl eaten by the wolf)
- Hansel & Gretel (Mrs. Stubbins stuck in her pizza oven, and the boy eating the siding off his house)
- The Three Little Pigs (the Sheriff huffing and puffing and blowing the tavern down)
- Little Bo Peep (in town, asking if anyone has seen her sheep)
- Pinocchio (the man lying to his wife and having his nose grow)
- The Golden Goose (seen in the background)
- Sleeping Beauty (the wall of thorns, the food poisoning at the apple farm, and Jamie’s role to some extent)
- Other, less specific fairy tale references include:
- The four Archetypes taken on by the main characters (Princess, Prince Charming, Huntsman, and Jack)
- Talking farm animals
- Woman paranoid that her step-children were trying to kill her
- The town name, Bremen, is a reference to “The Town Musicians of Bremen”, another fairy tale.
- As each character gets more sucked into the story archetypes, their appearances change:
- Baird's hair gets longer and shinier, and her outfit transforms from a sensible coat and shirt to a corset and sparkly high heels.
- Stone goes from having a small wristband to a full leather falconry glove, with an axe strapped to his waist
- Cassandra gains a full princely coat, including a cravat
- Jones ends up with a slightly different hat
- The scene with Sheriff Heyer and Jamie realizing that the team being librarians makes very little sense is one of the first implications (along with a certain musical theme) that there is some magic at work in getting people to accept the Librarians without too many questions. In "And the Curse of Cindy", it's revealed that the phrase "We're the Librarians" (or "I'm the Librarian") is an incantation for a diffusion spell.
- This episode was the first one written by the full Writers Room, and the first episode shot after the two-part season opener.
- The plot for this episode came from a combination of two of Kate Rorick's ideas: the Hypnerotomachia Poliphili (which makes a brief cameo in the Bremen Library) and "fairy tales coming to life".
- Originally, this episode was supposed to be episode 4, but the airing order was changed when the TV schedule dates were set.
- Had the episodes aired in the original order, this episode was meant to set up Ezekiel's abilities, role, and narcissism, which would then be paid off with his ability to handle the Apple of Discord in "And the Apple of Discord", which was supposed to be episode 7. Instead, the two episodes aired in reverse order and back-to-back.
- This episode was a good chance to explore and showcase the character roles, either by playing them up or by subverting them. When deciding on character tropes, they wanted to avoid the ones that were already too close to the characters themselves - Baird is similar to the Huntsman, while “women being attracted to Christian Kane was not exactly a stretch” if they made Stone Prince Charming. Instead, the shifted roles provided a chance to explore other aspects of the characters.
- The biggest difficulty when scheduling the production of this episode was working around the time required to do the princess hair extensions for Rebecca Romijn.
- The cast members on the audio commentary listed this as their favourite episode of the season. Cassandra's "No, honey. Why don't you get me some French fries, my friends are here." line to the waitress was a big hit with the cast and was quoted frequently during production.
- The truck driver at the beginning is Charlie Brewer, one of the stunt people for the episode.
- The girl being threatened by the wolf is the daughter of producer Paul F. Bernard.
- Kate Rorick's father is a doctor, and told her that the hospital would have gotten into major trouble for HIPAA violations from letting Cassandra and Jenkins read private medical files.
- John Kim has kept in touch with the girl who played Jamie, Sophie Mitri Schloss, and her family.
- The wolf was a real wolf, but digitally enhanced. The writers and producers got to view test footage of the wolf wearing various hats, which they enjoyed greatly.
- As Christian Kane's dog was part wolf, he was worried about the scene where he kills the wolf, but it went well.
- The original plan was for either bluebirds or a blue jay to be flying around Baird's head as they were on the run from the transformed Sheriff. However, they couldn't get the right bird(s), and instead decided to use an owl for Stone's role as the Huntsman.
- Christian Kane and/or Rebecca Romijn told John Kim that if he looked the owl directly in the eyes it would kill him.
- The list of artifacts on Jenkins' blackboard was provided by Kate Rorick, with help from the Writers Room.
- Jenkins: "I understand your skepticism, Mr. Jones. Trolls are not indigenous to the Pacific Northwest, but with the return of magic to the world, all sorts of odd things are waking up. And if, indeed, it is a troll you're facing, well, it's not been nice knowing you, per se--"
- Stone: "Is there any other unnatural stuff that's going on around here?"
Sheriff Heyer: "We have our usual small-town problems. Uh, there's a farm down the way claims they're hearing voices from a barn full of animals. Girl from a local community college went to a music festival last week, didn't come back. And old Mrs. Stubbins was stuck in her pizza oven. We got her out okay. There's weirder stuff in the big cities, right?"
- Jenkins, on vending machines: "I adore these. It's like a miniature apartment building, and when you hit the right numbers, the occupant of your choice leaps to its death! And becomes your snack."
- Jenkins: "It's never the Genie's lamp."
- Ezekiel Jones: "Fairy tales aren't really my thing. The bad guy? He never wins."
- Jacob Stone: "All right, look, this, this is strange, all right? Cassandra's like a chick magnet, and Baird, I'm pretty sure that hair is not Army regulation!"
Cassandra Cillian: "Oh, I'm sorry. We're being strange? Where'd you get the axe?"
Stone, staring at the axe in his hand: "I don't know."
- Cassandra Cillian, as Prince Charming: "My friends, now is the time. We will rise against the forces of darkness. There is no beast that cannot be slain, no army that will not be faced. Together, we will fight, and together, we will win!"
- Jamie Heyer: "Dad? Who are those people?"
Sheriff Heyer: "They're librarians, honey."
Jamie Heyer: "Librarians?"
Sheriff Heyer: "Wow, now that I say that out loud, that does not make any sense at all. Not a lick."
- Listings - LIBRARIANS, THE on TNT - The Futon Critic
- Rorick, Kate (writer) & Frakes, Jonathan (director) (January 4, 2015). "And the Fables of Doom". The Librarians. Season 1. Episode 6. TNT.
- Rorick, Kate, Jonathan Frakes, Rebecca Romijn, Christian Kane, John Kim, and Lindy Booth. Audio Commentary. "And the Fables of Doom", The Librarians, season 1, episode 6, TNT, 2016.
- Rogers, John and Kate Rorick. "Writer Vlog: And the Fables of Doom." The Librarians, TNT, 2016.
- Rogers, John. "LIBRARIANS #106 "Fables of Doom" answer post" Kung Fu Monkey, 10 Jan. 2015, kfmonkey.blogspot.com/2015/01/librarians-016-fables-of-doom-answer.html
|"And the Crown of King Arthur" • "And the Sword in the Stone" • "And the Horns of a Dilemma" • "And Santa's Midnight Run" • "And the Apple of Discord" • "And the Fables of Doom" • "And the Rule of Three" • "And the Heart of Darkness" • "And the City of Light" • "And the Loom of Fate"|