Anime Meta-Review


El Hazard: The Mysterious World


By Date




Title Info

  • seen: 1-7 of 7
  • type: OAV
  • grade: worthy
  • Other elements of this title:
    • This title has been commercially released in Australia.
  • made: 1995
  • Review created: A while ago, i'll revise it eventually.
  • mod: none

There are some things that annoy me about this series, but it has enough strengths, and an important place in anime fandom, to get a position here. The story is about a disparate group of people drawn into a world of fantasy, ancient science of awesome power and current conflict. The cool twist is that the one who sends them back appears to be a result of how things turn out which gives an interesting dimension to watching the story unfold. Once in this alternate world the characters discover they have gained individual powers, which are strangely related to what they need at different points, and that they are centrally involved in an evolving crisis. Interestingly these people are very different characters and are initially seperated and eventually opposed, which is a nice change. The world is well designed and realised, possibly with an arabic legend influence? The characters, and there is a large cast, are as well realised as such numbers allow. Although it must be said that the ambience is light and playful, rather than dark and dramatic, which sometimes makes it seem like certain characters are not taking it seriously. The writing has some loopholes and is occasionally overly dramatic but is generally skillful. The animation and production values are excellent. The series also takes a while to get into gear so some patience may be needed. Bonus points for a certain character, and her nicely done story. Which character I mean will be obvious by the time of the touching and satisfying conclusion.

The folks at THEM give it a stellar review but do note that it is "basically a giant animated B-movie". This does give it energy and a certain epic scale, but it was also responsible for a lot of the things that irritated me. A matter of personal preference certainly, but worth mentioning. There must be something about this series, because lots of review sites give the entire story and then say, "and it was fun to watch", gah. The Anime Critic resists the urge and gives a short review culminating in a thumbs up (although he disliked the conclusion).


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:17 WST 2009