action adventure anime dimly lit libraries fantasy Fiction genres Libraries magic libraries

Libraries in the world of the 1990s anime, “El-Hazard”

Today I’d like to talk about a few scenes from the 1990s anime, El-Hazard. In the show’s second episode (“The World of Beautiful Girls”), part of The Magnificent World OVA, the resident scholar of the mystical land brings out the records to find out any information they need to know about Makoto’s powers.

The scene involves them working together in the library to find out about his powers. The character helping them is not a librarian, to be clear.

In the sixth episode of the series (“The World of Gleaming Light”) we see the library again as Alielle is looking for her there:

No action is shown in the library at all. Only a short scene and then the characters move onto another location. The library does look pretty and full of books! You could say that knowledge hurts, to quote from Sprig in Amphibia which I reviewed earlier on one of my sister blogs.

In the next OVA for El-Hazard titled The Magnificent World 2, Makoto is working at the library as a scholar. Again, no librarians are shown.

He later even talks to his sister about it, noting his studies in the library, showing the importance of the library as a place of knowledge and understanding, at least in this anime series. This is another positive message when it comes to libraries which should be applauded without question.

Another library pops up in the next episode of the OVA titled “The Awakening of Kalia.” It’s not much of a mention but it does become an important part of the story, like those mentioned earlier in this article. Likely the library is damaged, if not destroyed, during the fighting that commences in this episode:

Again, another instance of a librarian-less library. Reminds me of the fifth episode of Roswell Conspiracies: Aliens, Myths and Legends, “Peacemaker,” where the protagonist, Nick Logan, fights with interstellar aliens inside a library. Of course, the library is deserted and the library is horribly damaged as this protagonist basically helps destroy it in order to get back at the aliens, defeating them once and for all. I’ve watched other episodes of that show and in none of them is there another scene in a library, which could have been rectified.

That’s all for today’s post. Until the next post!

© 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!

By Burkely Hermann

Burkely Hermann joined the National Security Archive as an Indexer and Metadata Librarian in March 2020, using his experience with arrangement, indexing, electronic databases, cataloging, metadata creation, and knowledge of history on a daily basis. In December 2019, he completed his Master of Library and Information Science, specializing in Archives and Digital Curation, at University of Maryland. In 2016, he received a Bachelor of Arts, with a major in Political Science and a minor in History, from St. Mary's College of Maryland. He previously interned at the National Archives II facility in College Park and worked at the Maryland State Archives, Digital Curation and Innovation Center, and the Enoch Pratt Free Library. He is also a member of the Society of American Archivists. In his free time, he researches his family genealogy, serves as a judge for National History Day, which he participated in for several years, writes fictional works, and keeps up with changes in the library and archives fields. He currently runs seven WordPress blogs, primarily about his family history, or reviewing archives and libraries in pop culture.

2 replies on “Libraries in the world of the 1990s anime, “El-Hazard””

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s