In the new season of FLCL, many years have passed since Naota and Haruhara Haruko shared their adventure together. Meanwhile, the war between the two entities known as Medical Mechanica and Fraternity rages across the galaxy. Enter Hidomi, a young teenaged girl who believes there is nothing amazing to expect from her average life, until one day when a new teacher named Haruko arrives at her school. Soon enough, Medical Mechanica is attacking her town and Hidomi discovers a secret within her that could save everyone, a secret that only Haruko can unlock. But why did Haruko return to Earth? What happened to her Rickenbacker 4001 she left with Naota? And where did the human-type robot ‘Canti’ go?
Source: Adult Swim
FLCL: Progressive is a pretty good watch but it sadly doesn't come close to the production value of the original series. I'm sure a lot of it came down to budget and time limitations since that's something they actually mentioned in the actual FLCL series itself. I do feel the show just doesn't have the same impact because of the limitations and it's a real shame. The show starts out really strong but halfway through the show it starts to feel kinda mediocre. I think one of the main problems of the series is the introduction of goofy characters while the art style sakes a little bit of a backseat too. In the original series the characters acted goofy but in this series the characters are goofy. That's a pretty big difference. The production value increases again near the end of the series to give it a proper conclusion. I was a little disappointed with the way Haruko was portrait this season as well. I understand she's a lot more mature and that she's lost a little of her craziness but we're also introduced to Julia who is her voice of reason... basically I feel Haruko was too calm and the art direction didn't help her out either. If anything, it felt Hidomi was outshining Haruko on the badshit crazy department. It's still a good watch, it's just not as good as the original and the first episode of FLCL: Alternative reminded me more of original FLCL production too. Also.. best ringtone ever.
I MISSED FLCL LIKE HELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was really surprised the creators did such a good job. The characters were very well developed and were random as in the first season. There are a lot of Easter eggs, throw backs to good old FLCL, guitars... did I mention the guitars... *drolls*. Anyways... in the first season we can see that no one really explains the themes of adultery and emotions as in this season. Sometimes it was put very bluntly and the points were explained very straight forwardly. But it's not necessarily bad. If you can get used to it that is... >>Yessss this person was expecting less or none explanations at all<< but ya can't get what ya want sometimes. In the end those explanations were linear and they didn't steer away from it so I'll just leave it there for opinion matters. You know what really ruined it for a moment tho? The 5th episode. Just... you're gonna get ir when you see it... it pokes your dang eyes out. In the end it gave off the sense that I was really watching FLCL. Felt nostalgic as fu...furnicles (whatever that means...). Even The Pillows were there. And for the love of Pickles, I really don't know any other anime that has such a nice music that I listen to to this day. So I'll just add some more of that goodness to my playlist.
FLCL Progressive is the sequel to the much beloved FLCL from nearly 2 decades earlier. I went into it partially skeptical but with high hopes. Progressive follows a similar formula to the original and while it falls short in some areas it excels in others.The Story can be hard to follow but that is to be expected of any FLCL title. It was crafted well, told in a similar style to the original however, the story focuses more on the galactic war between Medical Mechanica and the Fraternity instead of the interactions between the characters. Due to the disjointed nature of the FLCL series this leads to some abyssmal pacing with the story not really progressing nor a solid foundation being laid for it early leaving the viewer in the best case wondering when it will kick in and where it will take them, or in the worst case with no investment at all. The show is still full of symbolism and foreshadowing to drive the majority of the story along with a fair bit of call backs to the original series. Overall, I would say it is decent but still falls short of the goal they were aiming for.The animation is another area where they attempted to emulate the original with their own spin. It has abrupt scene transitions, changes in style and quality throughout every episode. It will go from gorgeous panning shots and smooth action scenes to a more gritty almost first draft sketch like drawing style. The is done in a way that always keeps your eyes drawn in on key areas at the right times while also letting you scan and wander around other times. That being said they toned down the stylized changes instead of going from 0-100 choosing to go from 25-75. The animation never swing fully to either side in progressive which really keeps it from sticking out and leaving a lasting impression on you like the original did.The Pillows returned to do the soundtrack for the show and it was 100% the correct choice. Every song both fits with the tone and direction progressive is taking while also feeling distictly FLCL. Every time a new song kicks up you feel like it could have been included in the original. Meanwhile the song always adds to what is currently happening in the episode. Sometimes it will feel like it is taking center stage in the scene but it does so without ever detracting from what is currently happening either. As far as voice acting goes, the voice actors in both the japanese and english dub for Hidomi and Ide fit nicely. Kari Wahlgren is still around for the english voice of Haruko and does a fantastic job as always. Megumi does such a good job with the japanese voice of Haruko it can be difficult to tell the voice actress is different from the original even when you already know it.Sadly, the characters is where I feel the show falls short. The main cast are all decent but none of them really stand out either. The show spends so much time trying to focus on the galactic war that it doesn't get around to exploring the intimate character moments or the interactions between them as much as the original did. This makes it easy to never get fully invested into the characters and develop a bond with them before the end of the short 6 episode series.All in all I would say as long as you don't get your hopes up too much it's worth a watch. It would be nearly impossible to create a show that would give you all the same feelings as the original FLCL but progressive does a pretty decent job of forging it's own path while still giving plenty of nods to where it all started.
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