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[R2 (European) DVD box art]
AKA: フリクリ (Japanese), Furi Kuri, Furikuri, Fooly Cooly
Genre: Acid trip soap opera (with added explosions)
Length: OAV, 6 episodes, 30 minutes each
Distributor: Currently licensed by FUNimation
Content Rating: PG-13 (violence, innuendo, fan service, general insanity)
Related Series: N/A
Also Recommended: Aspirin. Also: Excel Saga, His and Her Circumstances
Notes: A manga with a very different art style, also named FLCL and written/illustrated by Hajime Ueda, was licensed by TOKYOPOP prior to their American branch shutting down.
Rating: Four StarsFour StarsFour StarsFour Stars

FLCL

Synopsis

See main review.


Review

FLCL is a very, very unique anime. The only anime that I can think of that even comes close to the insanity and instability of FLCL is Excel Saga, and even that doesn't fully describe FLCL.

It is truly insane. If you're not completely and utterly confused at what the hell just happened during the first episode of FLCL, then you are more insane than the characters that are in it. Even after the anime ends, you'll still be in a stupor with one statement in your mind.

What the hell is this?

FLCL is probably the most innovative and original series that I have ever seen, even by GAINAX's standards. The insanity begins and never ends as Haruko runs over Naota on her bike, smashes him on the head with a bass guitar, and proceeds to give CPR to an already breathing and functioning Naota ... within the first 5-10 minutes of the first episode.

The plot, or lack thereof in FLCL is a feat to explain. There's really no distinct position in which you can start. Even if you do find some way to explain FLCL in some logical manner, the viewer still wouldn't understand. You need to just sit down, shut up and attempt to make sense out of it for yourself because everyone else will have a completely different take on what the hell is going on.

The characters aren't anywhere near normal. Naota has a horn on his head that appears when he thinks of something perverted. Haruko is an alien who makes for one of the worst maids of all time and Naota's father and grandfather lack any form of maturity. Yet, Mamimi is actually the closest to normal and most realistic of the group. Mamimi is Naota's older brother's girlfriend. Unfortunately for Mamimi, Naota's brother is in America playing baseball. So Mamimi dedicates her time to making moves on Naota.

The animation and artwork are consistently good throughout the OAV. Creativity is shown in this department around episode 1, where an entire is animated in a comic book format. The character designs are also top-notch, with Haruko looking the best out of the group. Her pinkish hair and green eyes light up the screen just as often as her awesome looking Vespa bike and flashy bass guitar.

One of the best aspects of FLCL is the hard rock soundtrack that plays throughout the duration of almost every episode. While the music alone might not sound absolutely sensational, its fast paced and stays in perfect synchronization with the scenes in the anime. Along with that, it is never overpowering to the point that it detracts from the craziness that the anime is portraying.

FLCL was made for those who were tired of being burnt out by the final thirty minutes of End of Evangelion and those who are sick of slow-moving anime such as Wings of Honneamise. It was a kind of relief for people who came home from a sixty-hour workweek burnt out and drained of most of their energy. It was for teenagers who wanted to try something new for a change.

FLCL may not have a straightforward or deep plot. It may not have complex characterizations. Hell, it may not have any meaning. But FLCL does succeed in its true objective. It is fun to watch!

Sometimes, you just want to grab a bowl of popcorn, shut off your major brain functions and watch a comedy that will make you laugh out loud frequently. I sure as hell do.Robert Nelson

Recommended Audience: Classic flip-skirt fan service in a couple of spots ... mecha getting ripped to shreds ... some discussion of adult themes and occasional lechery ... nothing else of truly objectionable taste.



Version(s) Viewed: R1 DVD
Review Status: Full (6/6)
FLCL © 1999 Studio Gainax
 
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