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Madame Razz, Broom, Kowl, and the glowing book

Broom, Kowl, and Madame Razz ask the librarian (the ragged, old man on the right) where the “inner library” is in an episode of She-Ra: Princess of Power. It took me a while to find this episode again, but I’m so glad I found it once more.

In a completely different direction than my last post, I’d like to talk about the fictional library in season 1, episode 20 (“Three Courageous Hearts”) of the 1980s animated show, She-Ra: Princess of Power. They go to a library in the “valley of the lost” to get a magical glowing book which has the spell to free She-Ra, their companion in the “Great Rebellion” after Shadow Weaver, who had disguised herself as a young female competitor, had made everyone go to sleep with a spell at Mystacor’s “Annual Trickster Competition.” The library is the main part of the episode’s plot, making this unique from other fictional libraries.

While Kowl is unsure about it, saying they are too weak, “too dangerous and too far,” they continue onward on a perilous journey, while She-Ra is trapped in another dimension (the sixth dimension), a place “beyond time and space.” They continue on their wild adventures, on the way to the library, down a snowy mountain, They go in the nondescript grey building, a library, with Kowl, Broom, and Madame Razz, who is leading them, looking through the stacks for the glowing book. A librarian, with long white hair, a clear stereotype of an elderly librarian or even an archivist like Madame Nu in the Star Wars series (whether in the animation or film), asks Madame Razz if she is looking in the right place, saying she will only find a glowing book if she searches in the “inner library.” While they are excited to go in there, he warns them, saying that no one has gone in there are thousands of years and books are in unrecognized languages. They still go in regardless, as they are dedicated to their friends. The librarian wishes them “good luck in finding your book.”

They get in the “inner library” and it is a mess, books stacked everywhere, no order whatsoever. It’s almost like a bad caricature of a library or an archives (probably more the latter), reminding me of those 1990s films which warned of the danger of record tampering, erasure, and corruption. Looking at the disorder, they look with a degree of shock, not knowing what to do. In the meantime, She-Ra gets through the dimension she is stuck in (the “third level”), with her captor saying she is the “best he has ever seen.” When we return to the library, our heroes are reading books, trying to find the glowing one, looking very distressed. Broom begins dusting on the floor and suddenly the glowing book is revealed! She gets the “nameless glowing book” in her hand with glee.

She then uses a spell in the book to bring them to She-Ra and they succeed. She is so glad to see the, saying they risked their lives to save her. Kowl is grateful saying it’s just like how she has rescued them many times. They escape the hole in the ground and come out, with the Horde soldiers running away, scared of her. Madame Razz then awakens Angela, Bow, and Castaspella in Mystacor. In the closing of the episode, Castaspella awards Broom, Kowl, and Madame Razz with awards for saving She-Ra and “all of the Mystacor.” They have a good laugh, then there’s the weird talking squirrel, “Lucky,” talking about people showing courage as the “lesson” from the episode. And that’s it!

© 2020 Burkely Hermann. All rights reserved.


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on my History Hermann blog but has been re-edited and fixed before being posted on this blog. Enjoy!

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By histhermann

Marylander with MLIS who loves archives, libraries, genealogy, reviewing pop culture, and writing fictional stories. UMD '19 & SMCM '16 grad. I've been running various WordPress blogs for a while now, about genealogy, libraries, archives, and more.

13 replies on “Madame Razz, Broom, Kowl, and the glowing book”

[…] Let’s start with episode 51 (“Distance”). In this episode, Kore is shown her duties by Hectate. This includes traveling to what is described as a library, where Shades read scrolls. According to Hectate, these Shades are recording “the lives of every single mortal as it happens.” Each scroll represents a mortal life, with new scrolls started as soon as a new mortal is born. If a mortal dies, the scroll is “filed away in the library” and Kore is given the job to gather information on mortals for specific trials, assisting Thanatos and Hermes. Kore is unsure she can fulfill this task. Now, as Cross rightly points out, the filing away of a scroll after a mortal dies makes the place, not a library, but rather an archives. As such, she is also right that the “archives-and-libraries-are-synonymous angle” is unfortunate, even though there is undoubtedly wonderful spirit and art behind this part of Underworld Corp. At least this angle isn’t as bad as the confusion in Star Wars: Attack of the Clones, which is only continued and magnified in the animated series. The fact that these scrolls will be used for trials means that they are records that have continuing value, as they have usefulness and significance, justifying their preservation. As the archives-as-such in this episode is only shown briefly, we don’t get a look at how the records are categorized. Hopefully, it is done in a way better than the abandoned scrolls that are shown in episodes of Tangled (“Rapunzel and the Great Tree” and “Islands Apart”), which I’ll focus on in a later post on this blog, or the “inner library” in that She-Ra: Princess of Power episode in the 1980s. […]

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