A Government Coverup Exposed
What if almost every significant technological breakthrough of the past several decades was due to the research of a top secret agency of the United States government?
That is very premise of the sci-fi web series OZMAT (Office Of Zoological Mutations, Anomalies & Transformations) created by digital media company *CloudKid.
The plot centers on the efforts of OZMAT head scientist Dr. Elias Lipton to stave off the agency's dismantling by the Department Of Defense (DOD).
You see, OZMAT is home to hundreds of rare, exotic creatures that possess fantastic powers and abilities.
Because of the scientific studies conducted on these animals, technology was created that led to the development of many pivotal inventions, such as the microwave oven and kevlar.
However, no new specimens have been discovered for several years. Deeming the agency irrelevant, the DOD wants to shut it down ASAP.
Dr. Lipton is given 30 days to make his case for continuing his research.
Fearing the loss of his life's work, and the welfare of the creatures who inhabit OZMAT's vast facility, Dr. Lipton provides the DOD daily video reports.
These reports highlight the origin and history of the agency, reveal classified creature dossiers, and presents footage of actual laboratory specimen testing.
Strangely, Dr. Lipton's videos and reports fall on deaf ears at the DOD. Desperate to save the agency, he makes the fateful decision make all of OZMAT's files public.
However, he realizes a far deeper, more insidious conspiracy may be at work against him.
The Construction Of A Conspiracy
OZMAT is quite simply a joy to watch.
This all-ages project mixes live action and animation to produce one of the most imaginative web series online.
The moment you navigate to the series beautifully designed web site, you realize you are in for a unique viewing experience.
The team at CloudKid have created a faux-government agency with an attention to detail that is very impressive, including:
A detailed history of OZMAT's origin
Archival footage designed to look and feel decades old
Authentic-looking case files and government correspondence
Cool, retro science sets and props
Numerous geeky references and Easter eggs littered throughout the story
Still, among the chief hallmarks of the series is its menagerie of animated super-powered creatures.
For instance, you'll meet the lovable 3,000 pound, gelatinous cryptoid code-named Asimov who emits powerful laser bursts when under stress.
The Human Element
Kudos also goes to the excellent performances of the live action cast, most notably the actor who portrays head OZMAT researcher Dr. Elias Lipton (mysteriously, I couldn't find the identity of the gentleman who portrays the good doctor. Hmm).
As the face of the agency, Dr. Lipton is instantly likable due to his "nutty professor" air, passion for his research, and his paternal concern for the welfare of every creature under his care.
As you watch Dr. Lipton's reports (definitely view them in chronological order!), you quickly become invested in this character as you witness his emotions shift from bright-eyed optimism to eventual frustration and dismay over the apparent lack of regard for his agency's work.
Watch the two official series trailers below to get a glimpse of this extraordinary world ...
Again, the production quality is superb in every way.
In fact, the creators at CloudKid have developed digital content for prestigious clients such as Nickelodeon and PBS KIDS. Their excellence is definitely on display in this project.
The web series is comprised of a total of 31 videos, with each being no more than two and a half minutes in length.
OZMAT is currently available for viewing on the video sharing platform Vimeo.
I champion quality sci-fi that can be enjoyed by both adults and children. OZMAT definitely fits the bill.
*Editor’s Note: In 2015, CloudKid, the creators of OZMAT, ceased operations - and took offline the official web site for the web series. Fortunately, the studio upload all of the web series episodes onto the video sharing platform Vimeo. For the complete narrative, it is strongly recommended to watch the web series episodes in chronological order.
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