How I tried to watch four episodes of Ozma and failed

Somebody tells me to watch Ozma. So I ask, “Okay, why should I watch Ozma?”

“It’s not an anime about high school kids! People get into giant sand ships and battle each other!”

I then think, “Whoa, that might actually be kind of cool.” After all, I had just watched a show where Nyarlat-freaking-hotep is personified as a hyper bishoujo with a checkerboard skirt. I mean, how do you go from this

to this?

You just don’t. It’s not right. It’s… no, I’m sorry for digressing. We’re not here to talk about that. We’re here to talk about Ozma.

And how it’s even worse than turning an Outer God into potential wank material.

Before Ozma starts, the author appears onscreen.

He sounds like a nice enough guy. He doesn’t want our reality to turn into Ozma‘s reality. Cool, maybe we’ll get some neat environmentalist commentary. I’m not even joking–I love the trees. And sand sucks:

The anime finally starts and an evil looking dude is chasing a girl across the sand. I don’t know about you, but I’m getting a strange sense of déjà vu:

Is this just a coincidence, I thought? But then another wave of déjà vu hit me:

This is getting crazy. And the evil dude in a mask totally looks like that bad guy from Gundam Wing! But at this point, I’m still trying to give Ozma a chance so I check myself: “Self, not all Japanese dudes in girly masks look the same. That’s totally racist.” Plus, it turns out that the guy responsible for this anime also worked on Galaxy Express 999. Maybe he just didn’t have time to draw new characters.

So I keep watching and the girl gets saved by a lovable, shaggy-haired scamp, i.e. the hero. Afterwards, the anime’s world-building, world-building, world-building some more… it’s not the most exciting stuff, but every story has to establish its setting. Just then, the evil guy and his military shows up. They demand that the good guys hand the girl over to them. I’m thinking, “Shit’s about to go down. Here’s the exciting part that my friend was talking about.” I was wrong; the only thing that went down was my heart rate.

I’m thinking constant action, explosions, unlimited firepower, so on and so forth… what I got was a bunch of poorly-animated dudes sitting in rooms, yelling at monitors and punching buttons.

“Double the speed!” the captain commands. She often sits in a chair.

“Double the speed!” a subordinate repeats.

“Going to double speed!” chimes in a third person. And this is how these claustrophobic scenes play out. If you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of a ship moving slowly through sand… er, water? I don’t even know how the sand happens to be translucent underneath the surface, but whatever. In any case, just when you think you might actually get to see things happen, the anime quickly cuts back to the captain yelling out another order from her chair.

It looks like the good guys are going to escape. Aaaaand… I get to see none of it. I just get to see people play command center. Imagine if Starcraft 2 didn’t have any of the fancy graphics. You just play as an old dude in a chair; you bark orders to people and they tell you what might be happening during the zerg invasion. That is not exciting. Therefore, Ozma is not exciting.

And don’t forget the jargon. We can’t effectively world-build without making up a bunch of terms that will likely be inconsequential to the bigger picture.

“The enemy is deploying a quasi-transition field.”

“What’s the radius of the LS boundary phase?”

“We’ve lost the phonic signature.” That’s too bad, ’cause I just lost a damn and I’m not even done with the second episode. Zero tolerance to command rooms everywhere.

14 thoughts on “How I tried to watch four episodes of Ozma and failed

  1. fadeway

    Play Saya no Uta. It’s good, and has a minor Nyarlathotep girl. It’s also even more wrong. Though you probably know it.

    I’d at least try Ozma, but I’m a completionist and would have to watch the entire Lejiverse first.

    Reply
    1. appropriant

      Normally I’d be uncomfortable with seconding an eroge suggestion, but Saya no Uta does have a good story. Even if it’s quite disturbing.

      Reply
        1. Guy

          Since you’re looking for a third eroge recommendation, may I suggest Kara no Shoujo.

          It’s linear and pretty difficult, but it’s set in the fifties and the main character is a thirty-something detective who deals with grizzly and macabre murders.

          Reply
    2. E Minor Post author

      null

      An eroge, huh? Little too youngish looking for me.

      And the Leijiverse is gigantic so you’ll be watching for a while.

      Reply
  2. Sora

    the op is so bad! It just has the main guy riding in the desert, and nothing else.. and the masked guy looks like the masked guy from every gundam series..

    Reply
    1. E Minor Post author

      I actually thought the OP song was okay, but yeah, the actual OP itself is uninspired. Gonzo’s gotta Gonzo.

      Reply
  3. Ando

    Hey, barking orders at each other and standing around listening to the beeping sonar is pretty much all they do in every submarine show out there. I actually quite enjoy it, so I liked ep 2. It was the next episode where I lost interest because the storyline just seemed like one SF cliche too many.

    Reply
    1. E Minor Post author

      And I guess hate submarine stories. The whole cliche SF part doesn’t surprise me. The whole setup is a cliche straight out of Star Wars or even Skies of Arcadia.

      Reply
  4. MAGICAL☆BIRDY

    >the evil dude in a mask totally looks like that bad guy from Gundam Wing
    WHY WING? WATCH OTHER GUNDAM SERIES. JUST WATCHING WING IS LIKE GOING TO A PARTY WITH A BUNCH OF GLORIOUS NIPPONESE GIRLS AND THEN GOING HOME WITH THE LONE NIGGER.

    Reply
    1. E Minor Post author

      ‘Cause it was the first one I saw and I knew I’d never want to watch another Gundam show again.

      Reply
      1. MAGICAL☆BIRDY

        THAT’S BECAUSE YOU STARTED WITH WING. BASICALLY YOU JUST SAID THAT YOU’RE DONE WITH FUCKING BECAUSE THE FIRST PERSON YOU FUCKED WAS A NIGGER.

        Reply

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