Saturday, July 24, 2010


FLCL (Furi Kuri)

Grade: B+
Studios: Gainax (Neon Genesis Evangelion) & Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell) & Starchild Records
Manga author: Hajime Ueda
Genre: Comedy, Romance, Seinen
First complete run: 2000-2001
Regular episodes: 6

FLCL probably takes the award for weirdest anime ever. If it makes complete sense to you, you probably need to get checked out. It's that insane. The name, Furi Kuri, is Japanese slang for the act of fondling a woman's breasts. And that pretty much sums up the show. But I don't mean that in a bad way. It's one of the most unique, hysterically funny anime you'll ever come across. And it's only 6 episodes long.

The show's protagonist is an adolescent boy named Naota, who is perfectly normal...except, when he has a prurient thought, giant robots pop out of his forehead and begin making mischief. And where there are vampires there must be vampire hunters, right? In the first episode Naota meets Haruko, a traveling woman armed with a vintage bass guitar, who takes it upon herself to exorcise the robots from Naota's brow. Since she takes up work as Naota's family housekeeper, Haruko has ample opportunities to flirt with him and elicit the giant protruding robots-zits. Most of the anime focuses on the resulting love triangle between Naota, his father, and Haruko, as well as the mysterious mechas.

FLCL has been an extremely successful anime probably because its insanity is well supported by quality production. The show's animation style is almost like a comic book, rough and super exaggerated. The ecchi humor is absolutely hilarious. The score compliments it perfectly, a punk rock blend of perverse adolescent and determined adult. The action is surprisingly intense at times. And the plot is certainly interesting, but viewers shouldn't expect any kind of resolution. FLCL makes about as much sense when it ends as it does when it begins. But this one is all about the ride, and it's a fun, one-of-a-kind two hours of anime.

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