View Full Version : FLCL/Fooly Cooly/Furi Kuri...EXPLAINED!

Sean Fury
April 3rd, 2004, 10:14 PM
The general idea

FLCL is about the struggle between reason and emotion.

I suppose it's fairly obvious that the main metaphore of FLCL is the sexual relationship. More of a Freudian color to it.

1. HORNS are a Freudistic symbol of libido, expressing one's sexual desires.

2. The horns appear from a sort of sexual innuendo by a person of opposite sex.

3. The horns "burst" when there's a person of opposite sex present, and generally when there's a sort of sexual tension.

4. The guitars being taken out of heads are representations of active libido (proved by acute nosebleeding of female staff).

Thus, just like the MM Factory, they're exactly what they look like.

Another theme is that of "everyday boring life" (represented by Mabase), "new and exciting stuff" (e.g. Haruko), and "foreign intrusion" (Medical Mechanica).

A town with no place to go (Ep6) = Endsville; "Candid" (both Medical Mechanica and Atomsk) attempts to burn it down.

The characters & their role

I won't touch Naota or Haruko for now; other characters are just as interesting and are key to many of the more concealed layers of FLCL

0. Tasuku

He left when the MM Factory appeared. The factory reportedly imprisons Atomsk. Haruko's swing reminds Naota of his bro. Naota has a connection to Atomsk's power when he thinks of his bro. All this and some other things brought me to the conclusion that Tasuku is Atomsk. And the "Blond gal" he got in "America" is actually Haruko.

Atomsk has this metallic ring in his nose/beak that attracts Haruko's bracelet. Does this mean they're engaged?

BTW, Atomsk means "Atom city" in Russian.

1. Mamimi

Her smoking is heavily reminiscient of the MM Factory's smog. She began coming under the bridge since Tasuku left and the MM Factory appeared. She threatens to "overflow" (with sexual tension, presumably), and acts as a catalyst to most of the MM encounters.

She has strange beliefs about burning the town down and Candide the Dark Angel. She burned the school some years ago, Tasuku rescued her, and she thought he was an angel? Then Candide the TV-boy rescues her in exactly the same fashion.

Her eyes often look like MM beacons, as do Ninamori's in Ep3 and the Terminal Core eyes in Ep6. Naota's eyes also look that way in Ep3 just before the ears were translocated to Ninamori.

She usually smokes the Never Knows Best cig at the time of MM Robot arrivals (Ep1, Ep2, Ep4, Ep6). Apparently there's only one such cig at a time, but I'm not sure whether it's the same one.

The process of burning cigs reminds of her burning down houses. She seems to be serious about destroying Mabase. I wonder if she knows her true effect on things; do her rituals have any sense, or is her belief in them false? Did she really make a pact with the devil? One thing for sure, she does have some effect on Medical Mechanica. Her smoke seems to revive robots.

Just a naughty bit: When she's washing up in the river, is it cause she's been bullied, or it's just the period?

2. Candid

If he is an MM Utility robot overtaken by Atomsk in an attempt to flee MM, why did Haruko bash him on the head? If he wasn't Atomsk, why was he fighting MM in the first place? If Haruko wanted Atomsk's head, why didn't she get it when Candid was bashed in Ep1? Apparently he's a part of the "giant hand robot", but why didn't he merge with it in Ep5?

Otherwise it is clear Candid was subdued by Haruko just like Kamon; like Amarao, he wants his head and pride back, and tries to cover the hole at the back of his "skull" with glued pieces of himself found around the burned school/embankment. Like Naota he can't hit with the bat.

The whole "merging with Naota" thing is complex; looks like physical consumption is not necessary, a psychological connection could suffice - trigger Atomsk's power in Naota (see Ep4).

Finally - is Candid REALLY and angel? Sounds like Mamimi's nonsense, but... her other nonsense has a strange connection to reality... Candid seems kind, charitable, and chivalric, unlike so many other FLCL characters. And in the end he remains to help people out in everyday's life.

3. Miyu-Miyu

The Miniature-Giant Space Cat looks like Haruko's superior, or at least an instrument of communication. Who was she reporting to? Not Amarao, I believe. So was she a loner, or there was some network behind her?

The cat has a bell which sounds quite like Haruko's bracelet. Possibly he appeared at the same time as MM Factory.

Just a naughty bit: Miyu-Miyu is obviously male; Ta-kun the kitten is engaged to a feminine-looking cat in Ep6; yet Ta-kun expresses "love" towards Miyu-Miyu, and the latter is not amused (Ep2).

Another tidbit: Haruko's baseball team ("the outsiders") have a logo that closely resembles Miyu-Miyu en face; and Mabase "home team" is called "The Martians". Miu-Miu = alien?

4. Medical Mechanica

The factory activates when an MM Robot (or at least its Terminal Core) is in this dimension. All robots have the form of hand (to move the iron), except Candide. The robots have insignia reminiscient of US Army (WW2 anyone?).

Agenda: there must be something more to it than sterilization of planets. Kitsurubami mentioned "straightening out wrinkles of our brains". I guess this is the metaphore for cultural invasion, but there could be something else.

They seem to turn planets totally blue - Ep6 + the explosion in Ep4 (when the sky is turned blue). Does this mean purity? The contrast between clear, bright blue (MM) and angry red (Atomsk) = the struggle between reason and emotion? MM is the epitome of intelligence unfettered by instincts, and Atomsk represents the "beast" nature in humans. Naturally the struggle and unity of opposites - I grow weary of Yin/Yang symbolism.

The Robots:

Main component - Eye in the center of palm, the Terminal Core. We know that eye (particlarly one in the palm) is a common symbol of soul. Thus, the Robot needs the SOUL.

Ep3 Robot: he let go Ninamori when his eye was crushed.

The Terminal Core is supposed to synchronize with its peripherals. Candid is actually a component (that's why Amarao wants to destroy it? Or does he realize that only in Ep6?), and so is Naota.

Maybe Atomsk's essence exists in Naota, and Candid is merely a receiver? Haruko thought it was the other way around, and so in Ep5 ignored Naota in favor of Candid, but then discards the robot and returns for Naota's head.

Haruko wants the power for herself, thus attacks Naota. But he chooses love, and the kiss "opens a portal" for Atomsk to leave Medical Mechanica and Naota.

5. Interstellar Immigration Bureau

Agenda: apparently they want to "get rid of outsiders", which can be interpreted as both the Japanese isolation policy and the desire for "golden middle" between Reason and Emotion. They represent "average human" with a resentment for both blind passion (Amarao's eyebrows) and absolute order (for Amarao the goal of Medical Mechanica - imposing absolute clarity of the mind - means nothing). They're not against love, but prefer its regular, mundane version; however, are fascinated by the extremes of passion, and can conduct deeds of self-sacrifice (if only in the most demanding moments - such as taking the death blow for someone you love).

Political theme

Cameos by stuff like USSR symbolics, Russian Cossack uniform, Nazi uniform, US uniform (sort of), and tidbits akin to "choose the left turn and take over the world", or the WW2 weapons (Walther, Russian PTRS heavy sniper rifle), all point to a political layer. Besides WW2 and the "invasion" of Japan by american culture, I can't think of anything.