Nothing can happen till you swing the bat.
FLCL is something else entirely. It is a show filled with pure and raw entertainment, from mind-numbing action-packed fights to suggestive and sleazy comedy. It is absurd, it is crazy, and it is for sure something that will leave you scratching your head, especially when you dive head-first into its first episode. It does not seem like the type of show that you could imagine enjoying at first glance if you are not the type to be drawn to the quirky and crazy. But there is something deeper that lies below. At its core, FLCL is a coming-of-age story about growing up and adulthood, and these themes are executed wonderfully with a wild and crazy ride through the phases of youth.
FLCL is much more than its craziness, but you do not need to fully understand it when watching it for the first time. In fact, you can enjoy it solely as a piece of entertainment. The show never beats you over the head with its themes, serving perfectly in the background with a rewatch helping in understanding the show a bit better.
The animation is exceptional; the spectacles of experimentation and quirkiness that the show produces are astounding, and it does not hold back in its absurd nature. Its sequences of fights and its sleazy and witty sense of humor feel fresh and endearing. It holds up extremely well despite its age, and its unfiltered style helps in creating its sense of identity. It is undeniably and unapologetically itself, and its style of animation plays a major part in shaping this identity throughout the show’s course.
FLCL is a coming-of-age story at heart, and it is exceptionally portrayed through its amazing characters. Naota’s growth as a person through his relationships with Haruko and Mamimi is executed meticulously with elements of the surreal. Haruko and Mamimi themselves are captivating individuals that are much more than first impressions. The characterization that this anime injects blends comfortably alongside the story, creating characters that are easy to like, easy to understand, and easy to relate to which gives the show a stronger sense of personality. Naota’s journey throughout the show is realized in a way that complements its subject matter, and it makes FLCL all the more loveable and unique.
FLCL’s music serves to create the perfect atmosphere and mood for the show, enveloping the show with an oddly nostalgic mood that emphasizes the fleeting notion of youth. The show has a very relaxing and comforting feel to it because of the various songs that play during points of dramatic tension and action. The music makes the show all the more endearing and contributes to the show’s unique sense of self.
FLCL is polarizing and understandably so, but it is genius in the way it incorporates its themes through an erratic and wild story that speaks to many on a personal level. It is a coming-of-age that deals with the notions of growing up and the things that come with it, making it feel real and relatable, and most of all, authentic. FLCL contains a concept that is genius and fun, creating its own unique identity amidst the world of anime and leaving itself as a refreshing and loveable show that I can recommend anyone to watch.