Actually, they’re not just making one sequel, but two. The late-night incarnation of Cartoon Network announced that it was helping create two more seasons — totaling 12 episode — of Gainax’s cult classic FLCL to air in late 2017 or early 2018.
If you don’t know FLCL (also known as Fooly Cooly), trying to explain it is tough. Funimation, which releases the original 2000 series in America, has a decent summary:
Naota is a detached sixth-grader afflicted by the pangs of puberty. He’s fooling around with his brother’s ex-girlfriend when a crazed girl on a motor scooter runs him over, brains him with a bass guitar, and moves into his house. She says she’s an alien, and hurls Naota into the middle of a mega-corporation’s secret agenda. And now giant battling robots shoot from his skull when he has naughty thoughts.
That is kind of the plot of FLCL, but it barely scratches the surface of what the anime is. It’s a coming-of-age story (that doesn’t shy away from puberty) that is as deeply personal as it is universal. It’s neither condescending nor naively idealistic about growing up, and yet it’s passionate and realistic and slightly tragic and real, which is extra impressive because it’s weird to the point of near insensibility. (There’s a guy who has seaweed for eyebrows.) And again, it is the coolest anime ever made.
FLCL is my favourite anime ever, and I have no idea how I feel about these sequels. There is a summary for them:
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?
Maybe it will be ok. Maybe it will be just as great as the original! But FLCL is one of those incredibly special things that shouldn’t work, but somehow does, and only because against all odds, everything came together in just the right way. I don’t know if Production I.G could have recaptured the magic in a second series in 2001, let alone 2017.
And now they’re making it with Production I.G instead of Gainax, and now an American company like Funimation is investing in it, and is going to have some requests, and I don’t even know if the original director and writer are coming back… I’m just worried that this is going to be a To Kill a Mockingbird/Go Set a Watchman situation. Not that I expect Hauko, the electric bass wielding alien girl to be a huge racist all of a sudden, but I wonder if I’m going to wish they just left this small masterpiece alone.