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''The Librarian'' films are a surprisingly popular action-adventure/fantasy series of TV movies made for the TNT cable network in the United States. The concept is fairly simple: all the world's greatest and most dangerous treasures (including the literal Goose That Laid the Golden Egg, [[HGWells H.G. Wells]]' time machine, the Golden Fleece, the Spear of Longinus and the real Mona Lisa - yes folks, the one in the Louvre is apparently a very good fake) are kept in a secret and generally highly secure library, the Metropolitan Public Library (previously the Library at Alexandria, Egypt, but later moved to the United States), and guarded by the world's smartest and most knowledgeable person... known, of course, as The Librarian.

Very light and tongue-in-cheek but with a surprisingly high budget for a TV movie (they're heavy on both stunts and special effects), the movies take the world's biggest geek, and make him into a bumbling but surprisingly capable action hero who must often travel the world in search of secret or stolen treasures, and retrieve them for The Library, which he is also the chief guardian of. Typically the adventures of course feature a large number of traps and other situations that require ridiculously obscure knowledge and good perception in order to beat or bypass... such as figuring out that an arrow-spewing trap is in time to a waltz (causing the hero and heroine to dance their way across the ancient Mayan death trap), or exactly where they are in the gigantic Amazon rain forest based entirely on the fact that they're within view of a particular endangered species of condor's territory (after they escape by parachute from a commercial passenger plane and land in it... which happens right after Carsen figures out how to read an ancient text after translating the long-lost Language of the Birds in a matter of hours in-flight).

The films are, in short, action-adventure comedy that parodies action adventure movies, with the world's biggest nerd as the action hero.

''{{ER}}'' veteran Creator/NoahWyle stars as the title character, Carsen, a sort of cute but very geeky boy-next-door who lives with his mother in New York, and is a perpetual student, with over two dozen degrees; precisely why he's offered the job in the first movie. He's accompanied in each movie by a tough-as-nails companion, who's always an attractive woman in a deliberate subversion of the "brawny man, weak woman" stereotype (Carsen himself can't fight worth a damn when it comes to throwing kicks and punches). Due to actresses' schedules (the one who played the bodyguard Nicole Noone in the first movie took a job as a regular cast member on ''BostonLegal'' around the same time), the female companion seems to change in every film, from a bodyguard appointed for his first year, to an archaeologist who happened to be searching for the same thing, to a woman that he was drawn to by destiny. This ends up giving the movies a sort of subversion of a BondGirl who ends up ''at least'' as competent as the Librarian at the action.

The first film (subtitled ''Quest for the Spear'') covers the Spear of Longinus. The second (subtitled ''Return to King Solomon's Mines'') covers the lost mines of Solomon, and the third (subtitled ''The Judas Chalice'') involves Dracula and an "eeevil" version of the HolyGrail. The second and third films were directed by Creator/JonathanFrakes, who also has very short cameos in each.

TNT is now continuing the story with ''[[Series/TheLibrarians2014 The Librarians]]'' which has Wyle reprising his role in a recurring capacity.
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!!Tropes include:
* {{Adorkable}}: Flynn. Of course. And in the new series, Cassandra.
* AdventurerArchaeologist: Flynn Carsen.
* ActionGirl: Carsen's companions. All of them. Also, the hot henchwoman from the first movie.
** In the series, Eve Baird, counter terrorism agent turned library guardian.
* ArtifactCollectionAgency: The Metropolitan Public Library.
* AscendedFanboy: Guess.
* BadassBookworm: Again, guess.
** Seems to be a requirement for the post of the Librarian. The movies seem to be pointing out that there's plenty of badasses, and plenty of bookworms, but not everyone can be both and still be a good guy.
* BadassGrandpa: Judson.
* BadassNormal: Arguably most of the characters, in a weird sort of way. The Librarians rely entirely on brainpower and observational skills, which are absurdly good, but still technically humanly possible, one would suppose; the bodyguards are tough and capable, but not ''magically'' tough and not as clever as their charges, etc. Meanwhile, Bob Newhart's character is an ex-military man who has inexplicable powers like walking through solid objects, one of the few folks with outright supernatural powers in the films. [[spoiler: He is also the warrior librarian from thousands of years earlier who first founded the Library.]]
* BigBadDuumvirate: Sergei Kubicheck [[spoiler: and Count Dracula]] in the third movie.
* BodyguardCrush: Nicole starts out as Flynn's bodyguard and falls for him. She also loved the previous librarian.
* BrotherChuck: The lead seems to always get a new love interest for each movie with the previous woman disappearing for no reason other to just have him find a new girlfriend.
** [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in the third movie, when Flynn's girlfriend leaves him near the beginning. Very few love interests can deal with someone whose life is as complicated as the Librarian's. They ''all'' ended up leaving him for some reason or another. Reversed in the series - he ends up having to leave Baird, though for good reason. She needs to take care of the libarians-in-training and he needs to find the lost library.
* {{Catfight}}: Between the aforementioned hot henchwoman and Nicole Noone in the first movie.
* CommutingOnABus: Carsen's role in the new series. The series focuses on the trio of L.I.T's and their Guardian while Carson is off searching for [[spoiler: How to get the library back in this world]]
* ComesGreatResponsibility: The previous Librarian before Carsen is the baddie of the first film, who uses his brains for selfish gain... and subsequently gets outwitted and defeated by the new Librarian.
** Flynn's bosses are adamant about not using artifacts for personal gain. They won't even use the Philosopher's Stone to help their meager budget.
* CoolLoser: Absurdly smart, surprisingly funny, Noah Wyle-level cute, earnest, usually polite... and ''still lives with his mother''?
** Global financial crisis, natch.
*** Plus, he was a perpetual student until the first movie. Then when he got a job, he had to travel all over the world all the time so why bother moving?
* CoolSword: Flynn gets swordfighting lessons from Excalibur.
* DeadpanSnarker: Flynn and ScaryLibrarian who hires him.
* DeathTrap: Lots of them.
* DirtyCommunists: They're the main antagonists in the third episode.
* EstablishingCharacterMoment: Each of the L.I.T's get one. Cassandra was working as a janitor at a hospital and gave the correct diagnoses where the doctor had it wrong. Jones is shown trying to steal an antique dagger after Carsen makes it clear that he's heard of him, and doesn't like it, and Stone is shown acting like a typical home town boy in a dive bar...until he shows just how smart he is by deciphering the meaning of the DarkActionGirl 's tattoo
* {{Expy}}: Nicole Noone, snarky, world-hopping, British-accented ActionGirl. [[Franchise/TombRaider Hmm....]]
* EqualOpportunityEvil: The cobra brothers have members of all races and genders.
* ExtranormalInstitute: Particularly in the third movie, when the magic of working in the Library has ''completely'' worn off for Flynn. Also Creator/JaneCurtin's character throughout all three--her most pressing concern is that Flynn saves his receipts while he's off saving the Crystal Skull or whatever he's been sent to retrieve.
* {{Flynning}}: The sword fight in the third film, IncrediblyLamePun aside.
* FunWithAcronyms: Flynn calls the leads of the series "Librarians in Training" or "My little L.I.T's"
* HeroicSacrifice: In the first episode of the series [[spoiler: Cassandra]] commits a not immediately lethal variety [[spoiler: She has a tumor on her brain that will eventually kill her. Carsen gives her the opportunity to cure herself with the residual magic of the dieing Excalibur, which would have been a HeroicSacrifice on his part, as he was dieing of a stab wound. Cassandra gave up her chance to save herself to save Carson]]
* HistoricalInJoke: A number of them, mostly in the form of the objects kept safe in The Library, but also notable is the retconning of the Library at Alexandria into the original Library where ancient treasures were stored.
* HotLibrarian: Noah Wyle. As a librarian. Duh.
** And very good with the ladies - he ends up sleeping with all three of his companions. In one case on the first night they meet!
* IdiotBall: When Flynn picks it up, he starts jumping up and down on an unstable bridge of made of rotted wood.
** Or mixes his own gunpowder out of old damp materials to use a 200-year-old cannon and Newton's Third Law to bust down a thick reinforced door... as opposed to going out the perfectly ordinary glass windows we can see right behind him.
* IllGirl: Cassandra in the series, She suffers hallucinations brought on by a grape sized tumor on her brain.
* IMinoredInTropology: Flynn has studied just about everything you can imagine and everything he could possibly need to know (plus a good deal that he presumably doesn't need). He refers to Master's and [=PhD=] theses, rather than the more standard "I minored in 'X'" line, but the principle's the same.
** Justified, as Flynn is in his thirties, and has been a perpetual college student for long enough to have at least a dozen different degrees.
* INeverSaidItWasPoison: At the end of the second movie, Flynn asks Judson if he inserted himself into the vision that he'd experienced earlier. Judson denies having the power to such things... but he mentions a detail of the vision in the process. Flynn notices this immediately.
* JungleOpera: This is something of a satire of this.
* LargeHam: The actor who played the villain in the first movie is clearly having a lot of fun. Coincidentally, the movie gets ''considerably'' [[SlidingScaleOfSillinessVersusSeriousness sillier]] as soon as he shows up.
* LeapOfFaith: At least for the ActionGirl - but not for Flynn, who calculates exactly ''where'' they have to jump.
* LovableNerd: Flynn Carsen.
* TheMagicGoesAway: In the series, Flynn explains how the world was once full of magic but has since waned due to technological cities built over leylines and magic being absorbed by artifacts.
* TheMagicComesBack: In the series, the aim of the Serpent Brotherhood is to bring magic back to the world. [[spoiler: They succeed, to an extent]]
* MagicalLibrary: Not only does it contain legendary and magical books, but also all the world's greatest and most dangerous treasures.
** It's also mentioned at one point that the Library is as "large as it needs to be."
** The series pretty much establishes that the Library is in fact sentient and goes so far as to handle recruitment.
* MakeMeWannaShout: An incident in the 3rd movie, where Carsen uses the acoustics of a specific room in conjunction with a High C from his vocalist companion as a weapon.
* MonsterProgenitor: [[spoiler: Judas to all Vampires]].
* MuseumOfTheStrangeAndUnusual: The Library.
* NotStayingForBreakfast: Simone in the third movie. There is a reason for it. [[spoiler: She's a vampire]]
* OffScreenBreakup: Flynn breaks with Nicole at some point after the first movie, before the second one...
* OneLiner: Ditto.
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: Vampires in the third movie can get sick with human diseases. They also temporarily die when killed before coming back to life.
* PublicDomainArtifact: The Library has a huge collection of these, including HG Wells' time machine, Jason's Golden Fleece, Excalibur (which is apparently a LivingWeapon), the Holy Grail, Poseidon's Trident, Pandora's Box, the Ark of the Covenant, and a whole slew of others. Basically? You name it, they have it.
** Also among which is a working ''jetpack''. Apparently it's a rite of passage for each Librarian to come across it, try to use it, and spend the next several minutes chasing the thing down.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Nicole Noone doesn't appear as a character in the second film because the actress was working on ''Boston Legal''.
* RefusalOfTheCall: Stone not only turned down an opportunity to interview for the position of The Librarian, he also turned down scholarships to two major schools in favor of working with his dad at an oil rig.
* SeenItAll: Judson, to a degree. He doesn't seem surprised at half of the questions Flynn has, and notes that it normally takes a new Librarian a while to find the jetpack and set it off. Flynn did it in record time.
* SemperFi: Judson is a marine and can handle an entire army of Serpent Brotherhood mooks on his own.
* SensibleHeroesSkimpyVillains: The villain's henchwoman has a more [[BareYourMidriff midriff revealing outfit]] compared to Nicole's more practical one in the first movie.
** Swapped around in the second, where Emily spends nearly the entire movie with exposed midriff.
* SherlockScan: This is part of how the main character gets his job - he scans his boss, determining that she was recently divorced from the depth of the ring-line on her finger and noting that she had three cats by being able to tell their hairs apart on her jacket. He occasionally does this to other characters as well.
* ShoutOut: Both to real-life in ''Curse of the Judas Chalice'', with a twist.
** Flynn's vacation to New Orleans was a love letter to the audience by the director for the restored city, severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina two years prior.
** Driving the point home, during a montage of Flynn and Simone's first evening together, exploring the delights of the French Quarter, briefly appears a musician on a saxophone -- the movie's director, Creator/JonathanFrakes, (who does play the sax in real-life), with a out-of-universe shout out to his character, Commander Riker, from ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration''.
** [[spoiler:The ending of ''King Solomon's Mines'' is a big one to the ending of]] ''{{Film/Casablanca}}''.
* SinkOrSwimMentor: New librarians were originally immediately sent into the field to deal with apocalyptic crises with no training and only a guardian for protection. If the librarian survived then it was on to the next assignment and if they didn't, it was time to start looking for the next candidate. Flynn eventually decides to make some changes by having the librarians-in-training handle cases that won't necessarily result in certain death and the end of the world. He still keeps the hands-off approach, however.
* TheSmartGuy: The ''entire premise'' is that the world's most important and dangerous position outright requires occupation by the ''ultimate'' Smart Guy, or on occasion, the ultimate Smart Girl.
* SoftWater: In the first movie, Nicole and Flynn fall a few hundred metres down a cliff then seconds later down a waterfall without injury.
* SuicideBySunlight: [[spoiler: Simone]] in the third movie.
* ThemeTuneCameo: In the second film, a set of self-playing pan pipes started playing the film's theme while Judson was scolding Flynn.
* TookALevelInBadass: In the second and third episode Flynn is portrayed to be smarter and stronger than he was in the first movie, especially how he defeats his opponents.
* UnusuallyUninterestingSight: Not only does no one in a hotel seem unduly surprised when Carsen walks up to the front desk in a bedsheet, but two gentlemen who are watching TV don't bat an eye when Judson pre-empts their program to have a two-way conversation with him via the lobby's television set.
* WeCanRuleTogether: The ActionGirl for the bad guys tries this on Flynn towards the end of the first movie. It was probably genuine, considering she spent much of the movie praising him as one heck of a Librarian to her fellow henchpersons (and at one point while Flynn is captured sitting next to him in a helicopter and smiling fondly at him).
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