FLCL Progressive – Episode 2 [Freebie Honey]

Well from what I’ve seen so far, FLCL Progressive is definitely continuing with the trend of FLCL being “anime on crack.”

For one thing, it appears that our protagonist Hidomi has such a desire to “be nothing” that she even dreams about zombies and post-apocalyptic worlds. She also, apparently, has a fetish for seeing men be beaten up or even eaten (as in her dream). Blech.

Hidomi heads to school and Jinyu (who is now the Hibajiri family’s newest cafe worker) tries to warn the teenager about the woman on the Vespa motorcycle (whom we now know is Haruko, Hidomi and Ide’s teacher), but she is repeatedly cutoff and is unable to convey her full warning before Hidomi leaves the house.

At school Haruko continues to brainwash her students with her bizarre speeches and random noises. She gives her students a yearbook that, to her students, appears to be full of strange-yet-normal memories from throughout the school year. This includes contacting UFOs and using the school to light a giant bonfire on its roof. xD   Hidomi however is still unaffected by Haruko’s words, so she is able to see that the yearbook is really just a bunch of kid drawings rendered in crayon.

After class Haruko asks Hidomi to give Ide his homework as he was absent that day; Hidomi reluctantly agrees, forgetting about Jinyu’s warning in the process. By the way, the dub has Yoshimi’s name as “Ko Ide” (or “Idechi” as Haruko calls him), but Wiki has his name listed as Yoshimi in the episode summaries. * shrug *   The latter appears to be incorrect information, so I’m using his last name Ide for my reviews.

Anyways Hidomi heads to the town slums where Ide lives, and she bumps into Ide’s friend Goro on the way. Hidomi learns that Ide is fairly poor so he

works hard to try to make and sell machinery after school. However he’s not very respected and is often beat up for his efforts.

As I mentioned earlier, Hidomi gets turned on (“overflows”) when she sees someone get hurt, and seeing Ide be beat on is no exception. Hidomi has a nosebleed and she passes out, and Ide rushes her back to his room so he can take care of her.

Ide is able to stop Hidomi’s nosebleed, but finds that being in close proximity to a cute girl in a short skirt makes for a very awkward conversation. It quickly becomes less awkward and more “da fuq?” when Haruko somewhat crashes the scene’s fourth wall and interrupts the two teens.

Jinyu arrives moments later, and we see that her classic car has turned into a mobile mecha. Jinyu breaks into Ide’s room and grabs Hidomi as a hostage, trying to provoke Haruko into fighting her. Having only her guitar for a weapon, Haruko straps a leash onto Ide’s neck and uses him as a weapon. The poor guy becomes a “laser beam” and a whip, and even ends up getting electrocuted by Jinyu’s car-turned-mini-lasers.

Jinyu stows Hidomi inside her car-turned-back-into-a-car so she can fight against Haruko one on one. Interestingly, Jinyu makes references to her and Haruko possibly being a single person at one point in time, but Haruko doesn’t take the bait to elaborate the comment for the viewer.

As she watches the two women battle each other from inside Jinyu’s vintage car, Hidomi is warned about Haruko again by Jinyu and she starts to overflow once more. A red horn emerges from her forehead – according to Jinyu, this is Hidomi “overcoming her inhibitor”. Hidomi then transforms a small, ugly robot that looks a lot like the metal version of a Raggidy-Ann doll. Hoever this robot contains great power and strength, and she’s easily able to overcome Haruko with a single burst of power. However when robot!Hidomi attempts to finish Haruko with a punch, she misses and hits herself in the face instead. This causes Hidomi to revert to her human form again. After her odd transformation and punch to the face, Hidomi is now rather weak and slightly injured.

Jinyu summons her car immediately and it transforms into some kind of medical monitoring machine. Hidomi and Ide are placed inside it so their vitals can be monitored. Haruko threatens Jinyu once more, saying that Hidomi is “hers.” I’m presuming this is because of her ability to summon robots or creatures from her forehead like Naota could. In the final moments of the episode Hidomi remembers to give Ide his homework, and they both laugh at the absurdity of what has just happened to them. Like really, after all that…. homework?

By the way, before I wrote this review I watched this video and noticed that FLCL Progressive continues with some details contained in the original FLCL dub, such as the English dub containing a handful of Japanese words. In this episode it was hearing Goro say “yamero” (stop) that was a bit of a mindfuck, especially since the dialogue following his line delivered by the thugs was in actual Japanese.  * head explodes *  I imagine hearing the entire scene entirely in Japanese will make more sense.

I’m still not a fan of this dub, but I appreciate some of the details that have gone into it and have paid homage to the original FLCL dub (such as the use of some Japanese words). Hidomi is very slowly growing on me as a character, but her attraction to zombies and death and blood still creeps me out a little.

Next episode… omg more baseball? xD

FLCL song of the week: Thank You, My Twilight  (off the FLCL Progressive OST, heard in the beginning of episode 1)


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