Image result for Space Patrol Luluco

  • Genre : Comedy, Sci Fi, Magical girl
  • Episodes: 13
  • Studio: Trigger

 

Luluco’s dad is a good man. He has done his best to raise his daughter as a single father despite being  an incredibly busy officer of the Space Patrol division and Luluco loves him for it. So when he gets frozen in an incident in the course of his job, Luluco agrees to take his place at the Space Patrol division and earn the cash needed to revive him. She is soon thrown into a world of dangerous space criminals with her dangerously handsome new partner Alpha Omega Nova.

Kill la Kill had a pretty big impact on me so I have always had very high expectations from Studio Trigger. I was charmed by the Little Witch Academia short when it came out (although I haven’t seen the actual series yet but I bet it’s de-freakin-lightful) but as a more kid oriented title, I felt the studio was a bit more restrained and I was really eager to see what else they could do. Then Kiznaiver and Luluco came out the same year and I figured I was in for one wild ride!

Image result for Space Patrol Luluco
Wild is the least you could say!

Luluco aptly capitalizes on Trigger’s flair for visuals. The cutsey, over the top art style is a little reminiscent of Kill la Kill, especially of Mako’s design and the bright Crayola palette is both cheerful and striking. The visual layout perfectly sets the tone for the series as it doesn’t take itself too seriously but still clearly flaunts the high pedigree of the show. I will admit that I don’t distinctly remember the soundtrack but I do remember it being very present and carefully selected. I’m just going to go out on a limb here and say it was great! I loved the actual animation, possibly even more than the art. It was a bit spastic, somewhat naïve and worked flawlessly with everything else. Once again, Trigger had proven that they know exactly what they’re doing when it comes to putting together an attractive anime.

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Now that’s a Magical Girl transformation

But anime as a medium is more than just the sheer practical aspects and when it comes to narrative, Luluco simple doesn’t measure up. Don’t get me wrong, the plot is agreeably unstable and frantic but it lacks a proper anchor to bring everything together. The story line keeps going off in random directions like a toddler trying to get away from their parents in a crowded mall and more often than not, it doesn’t seem to find its way back. The characters are similarly disjointed, without a good foil or straight man to center the cast. The whole thing becomes a gigantic melting pot that ultimately produces a great looking but rather bland stew.

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No wait, that’s not for eating

The show lacks balance and gives the impression that someone just kept throwing what were certainly very creative ideas in but then dropping them about the plot haphazardly. You can see traces of its predecessors throughout the series. Previous titles are regularly refreshed and classic themes of parental abandonment, magical girl deconstruction, the over the top zaniness are all present, but were Kill la Kill was unabashed and dripping with easy cool, everything in Luluco seems a little forced and a little too self-aware. At the end of the day, is there anything less cool than desperately trying to be cool? 

This is nothing like Kill La Kill

As a short series, clocking in at six and a half minutes per episode, it’s conceivable that the storyline simply overreached and ended up not having the time required to properly develop its narrative. Maybe it was just ill conceived. In any case, it ended up being a very well-crafted show with a poorly executed storyline that made a unique series sadly forgettable. Alpha Omega Nova was pretty hot though. I’m saying you should watch this.

Favorite character: Midori

What this anime taught me: I need a new keychain

Whiskey and Beer are a man’s worst enemies… But the man that runs away from his enemies is a coward!

Suggested drink: Pirate’s booty call

  • Every time Luluco transforms – take a drink
  • Every time Luluco hearts chimes up – take a drink
  • Every time Over Justice says the word justice – drink to justice!
  • Every time Nova is too cool – take a drink
  • Every time we hear about/see  Luluco’s mom – take a drink
  • Every time Luluco blushes – take a drink
  • Every time Midori is “pratical” – take a drink
  • Every time  Luluco eats- have a snack
  • Every time the show reminds you of another Trigger title – make a mental note to rewatch that

3 thoughts

  1. I feel like you glossed over the fact that this is basically a giant love letter to Trigger and Gainax works. Basically, it’s the history of studio Trigger as a short animation series. Personally, I found the show to have a fairly straightforward plot, just that it was presented as a frantic-seeming jumble. Still enjoyed reading and your thoughts on the show 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. How…Dare..You!! I did not gloss over anything, I simply didn’t pick up on it, there’s a difference, sir!
      Seriously, although I did get a few references I’m sure much more went way over my head and this is what I meant by the storyline lacking an anchor. Since the show works best as a series of winky inside jokes, If you don’t happen to be familiar enough with the source materials to put those visuals and events into context the framework of the story, which I agree with you is very straightforward, can evertheless feel disembodied and disjointed. If this is the very first anime you see, I’m not sure how much you’ll get out of it.
      Then again, I also drink a lot so I wouldn’t put too much faith in my ability to follow simple plotlines.

      Liked by 1 person

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