FLCL:P 1: FLCL in name only

FLCL: Progressive episode 1 review


What was the original FLCL? To me, it was a story of a boy named Naota, who met a girl named Haruko, hated her for a while, then eventually fell in love with her. Sure, there was a bunch of crazy stuff that happened in between, but ultimately FLCL was the story of Naota. Without him, FLCL is just a bunch of random scenes thrown together.

So, Naota isn’t returning for FLCL: Progressive, at least not yet. Neither is Mamimi and her “Never Knows Best” cigarettes and her super-cute way of saying “Takkun.” (Stephanie Sheh’s voice is practically the only reason to watch the original FLCL.) And for 95% of this episode, Haruko too is missing. Not really, of course.

Instead we get a story about a girl named Hidomi who is a nihilist with no purpose for living. Thanks, but what does this have to do with FLCL? We find out that she can’t get turned on by porn. Seriously, that’s the storyline. Aside from shock value, I don’t see what this has to do with FLCL.

Okay, I have to admit I did have a chuckle at the big reveal that apparently makes this episode officially Fooly Cooly. It’s not really a spoiler, but nevertheless I’ll leave it a mystery for now. Still, even with… her, I don’t know how this qualifies as a continuation of the FLCL story. We have one character from it, that’s it. Is this like the Tenchi series, with all its stupid spinoffs that dilute the quality of the franchise?

We almost got the Pillows’ “Little Busters,” but it was just a tease. The closing song isn’t “Ride on Shooting Star,” and it isn’t catchy. I know I was never a FLCL fan, but I feel like I now have to defend the original FLCL because it actually looks better in retrospect. Whatever this is, it’s not FLCL.

Character of the episode: Hidomi

Episode rating (out of four stars): *1/2