The Librarians does London. Is that the one in the UK or Ontario, though?

So over Christmas, The Librarians did an episode set in part in London called …And Santa’s Midnight Run. Obviously, given it had Bruce Campbell as Santa Claus, it was laden with a certain amount of awesome.

However, as you may have gathered from the trailer, the episode visited London. Which London? Well, that’s a tricky one, since the show is shot in Canada. So was it the one in the UK or the one in Canada?

You know what? No one actually said. So let’s have a look at the evidence after the jump.

London snow

A bunch of red phone boxes. That are almost non-existent in London, UK, now and you almost never see them in groups of four. There’s also snow. The last time snow fell in London, UK at Christmas was in 1999. Ontario? Well… But that does look like a London, UK street sign, so maybe it was filmed some other time of year…

UK or Canada: More likely to be Canada, but could be the UK

East End hat shop

This is apparently the East End of London. With its well known quaint hat shops. Any hat shop like that in East London, UK would be beaten up. Also, there’s a fire hydrant. We don’t have those in the UK.

UK or Canada: More likely to be Canada

Librarians railroad yard

This is a ‘railroad yard’. We don’t have those. However, that is clearly the London, UK skyline behind it.

UK or Canada: More likely to be the UK

Librarians homeless man

This is a homeless man. Typically, the homeless don’t dress like this in London, UK, but you never know. He is also happy to receive a donation in US dollars. We don’t use US dollars here. To be fair, neither do Canadians, but I imagine it’s easier for them to use US dollars than for British homeless people to try, particularly with the exchange rate being what it is.

UK or Canada: Could go either way

Librarians 2CV

So here we are, driving along through London. Driving along through London with its many telegraph poles by the side of the road. In our rented van. Our rented French 2CV. Our rented French, left-hand drive 2CV.

UK or Canada: Honestly, who knows at this point? It’s probably neither.

Librarians in London

Double yellow lines in London

Well, they’re driving that 2CV van with its UK licence plate on the left-hand side of the road. So London, UK. Except what’s that double yellow line in the middle of the road? We don’t have those. Metal trash cans? Nope. Not those either. And carefully painted out wide parking spaces next to an even wider road? Nope. Definitely nope.

UK or Canada: 50-50 again

It’s all too difficult to decide so far, isn’t it? Fortunately, towards the end of the episode, Santa transports his fellow passenger from London to Canada. So here they are driving through London and speeding up…

2CV in London

…Got it – that’s the natural road type and forestry of London. And now here they are in Canada.

Librarians in Canada

It’s the same place! It’s literally the same place! There we go. Mystery solved. They were in Canada all the time and definitely not in a poorly mocked up version of London, UK.

Of course, since The Librarians firmly has its tongue in its cheek for a lot of the time, it’s entirely possible this is all intended to be a comedic take on US and Canadian TV shows that try to simulate other countries on the cheap but are too culturally clueless to do it properly. So let’s not mock, unless it turns out to be the case they really did think people would believe that was London, UK.

But who knew that London, Ontario had its own version of the London Eye?




  • Craig Grannell

    Having lived in Wales for years in my uni days, I always found Doctor Who trying desperately to pretend The Hayes and/or the outside of St David's Centre was London highly amusing. (Even more so when they had to remember which bits of Cardiff they'd shown as London, and thereby attempt to avoid them in Torchwood, which was actually based in that city.

    As for The Librarians: oh dear. Still, par for the course, I guess, with British shorthand apparently being red phone boxes.