Labyrinth Nook

A blog dedicated to the Jim Henson film, Labyrinth - featuring hundreds of rare images, from stills to posters, from video game covers to pin badges! If you want to find anything Labyrinth-related, make Labyrinth Nook your first stop!

DAY 2: Labyrinth by AurelGweillys

I adore this! The poses and expressions are simply perfect. Jareth’s … attributes are also perfectly evoked.

These screencaps (with the exception of the last) represent three sequential shots from the ‘Escher Room’ scene in Labyrinth. In order to form an argument on what’s happening in these shots, I will start with a hypothesis: the entire ‘Escher Room’ scene is far more concerned with Jareth and his emotions than it is with Sarah rescuing Toby. For a start, the song dominates the first half of the scene and is completely concerned with Jareth’s dawning realisation that he wants Sarah but cannot have her. After the ledge-flipping antics early on, Jareth and Sarah are separate: the scene becomes a sequence of disorientating looks, and these screencaps exemplify that.

The set design is, of course, all about distorting perspective: up is down, down is up, and so on. Because the set doesn’t conform to your normal spatial boundaries, the way scene is shot doesn’t either. The first two screencaps above are a great example of cinematic trickery, even if the ‘trick’ is only to fool the viewer for a moment: the shots are framed so as to make you think that Jareth is looking ‘down’ at Sarah and she is looking back ‘up’ at him. Only when the next shot - of Toby looking ‘up’ - comes do you realise that Sarah is paying absolutely no attention to Jareth. For the rest of the scene, there is no interaction between them whatsoever: indeed, there’s a complete shift in focus from Jareth and Sarah to Toby and Sarah. When Sarah’s frantic race to Toby becomes the focus, the song starts to fade away, irrelevant and forgotten.

To stray into song interpretation territory, I will say it’s interesting to remark that the line “I can’t live within you” isn’t uttered until right at the end of the song. ‘Within You’ starts as a series of threats, bombastic statements and endearments, but the last line is almost gasped as if Jareth can hardly bring himself to sing it. The delivery is faltering and stilted, and it’s sung from the shadows. He knows Sarah isn’t listening, so he no longer has any need to hide his vulnerability and his longing behind bombast. He’s exposed, and his vulnerability means he becomes the most intriguing element of the scene. He should be our villain, but our empathy lies squarely with him because the scene is at pains to exemplify that he has been rejected and is suffering. That, my friends, is what makes Jareth so interesting.

Agree? Disagree? Have further thoughts? Let me know!

What were your favourite fairytales growing up? [x]

It’s great to see another Labyrinth fan emerge! I do, however, hope this doesn’t give the Once Upon A Time show-runners any ideas…


Jareth, PC-88 version of Labyrinth. Seems to be based on the Apple II point and click adventure thing rather than the Famicom top-down Zelda thing.

Wow, that’s amazing! I’ve never heard of this incarnation of the game before. Do you know anywhere with more info/is there an emulator version floating around?


One of a few concept sketches for a client.

While it’s only a rough sketch, I adore this - it captures the romantic yet vaguely sinister feel of the scene perfectly.


Sarah, drawn in PS.


It’s that time again! If you have Labyrinth blot bunnies bouncing around you’re brain in need of new pastures, be sure to check out the LabyFic community where a new challenge has just been posted! Anyone can take part and all are welcome. If you have any questions, just shout.

CHALLENGE #17: For this challenge, you are to change one decision or action that Sarah makes in the film. You can treat this as a very straightforward and traditional prompt (What if Sarah said yes to Jareth’s offer, remaining with him?) or as something a little more unusual (What would Jareth have done if Sarah had not said the words to begin with? Would he give up, or resort to new tactics? Would he even notice?) If you like you could even have a slow-burn story where a seemingly small change (What if Sarah had refused to give the Wise Man payment?) has consequences further down the line.

The deadline for this challenge is 27th September - a new challenge will be posted the following day, so please comment to let me know what you’d like to see from the next challenge!

For more information, visit the community and have a dig around!

Labyrinth Japanese-style, complete with the singularly most unflattering depiction of Jareth ever created.

I believe this is some kind of promotional flyer for the Labyrinth video game.

First of all, apologies as I appreciate that this has been a long time coming! I have a good excuse in that I have been away in Berlin, but I now wish to put things right and share more fanfic goodness with you all!

The New Fic on the Block

The Way Forward by AllTheBellsInVenice

New as of August 2014, this is an exceptionally well-written and gripping tale. Jareth weaves a trap for Sarah that seems practically inescapable, but she’s no easy conquest. I’ll quote a dialogue exchange below to demonstrate why you should read it.

“Why will you never see, Sarah? Why do you refuse to understand that our bargain is tilted so steeply in your favor?” Jareth said, seeming to grow, looming over her where she sat in the pool. “You receive so much, all of me, an infinity of dreams, and all I ask in return is—-”

“My submission,” Sarah said, setting her jaw. “Power over me. It’s not nothing. It’s everything.”

While marked as complete on AO3, this story still seems to be a work in progress.

The Golden Oldie

As Easy Mayst Thou Fall by kzal

This brilliant story is one of the most mature and fully realised takes on the Jareth/Sarah relationship I’ve ever read. It begins with a twisty pursuit, but in a brilliant inversion of the typical way of things the story gets really interesting after our favourite twosome enter into a relationship and acknowledge some difficult truths rooted in the past. The sequel, With a Heart as Willing, is just as great and is quite unique in numerous thrilling and unpredictable ways.

This story is complete, though its sequel is a work in progress.

The Hidden Gem

Time in a Bottle by Icklekins

This story is very different and really breaks the mould. It rotates between the perspectives of various characters (namely Sarah, Toby, Jareth and Hoggle), and realises all of them as complex personalities dealing with incredible difficult situations. Jareth has a plan afoot, and while I won’t spoil it with details I will say it lives up to his reputation for cruelty.

Although currently unfinished, the author posted an update (relatively) recently declaring her commitment to the story.

As always, if you enjoy any of these stories show your support for them and leave reviews!