"FLCL (フリクリ Furi Kuri?, also Fooly Cooly) is a surreal anime OVA series co-produced by Gainax and Production I.G. The series was created and directed by Kazuya Tsurumaki, and written by Yōji Enokido.
Furi Kuri follows Naota Nandaba, a twelve-year-old boy living in the fictional industrial town of Mabase, and his encounters with the alien life-form Haruhara Haruko. The Japanese suburb houses the Medical Mechanica building, the reason for Haruko's visit.
Naota's life is confined to going to school and living with his father and grandfather. The usually tranquil life in Mabase is rudely interrupted by the arrival of Haruhara Haruko, who bursts on the scene by running Naota over with her Vespa scooter and hitting him on the head with a Rickenbacker 4003 bass guitar. Later, Naota is shocked to find Haruko working in his house as a live-in maid.
Haruko's search for the alien being Atomsk puts her at odds with Medical Mechanica. At the same time, Naota is being watched by Commander Amarao. The Commander believes Haruko is in love with Atomsk and Medical Mechanica is out to conquer the galaxy. The fortuitous circumstances get Naota involved in a three-way battle between Haruko, Amarao and Medical Mechanica.
Haruhara Haruko gets her knee down on her "Cosmic scooter" Vespa.
FLCL's odd style, hyperactive pace, convoluted, esoteric plot, and tendency to break the fourth wall sets it apart from other contemporary anime. It can be categorized as a work of comedy, drama, science fiction, romance, philosophy, and a parody of contemporary culture in general. It has an abstractly designed storyline about growing up and losing the childish viewpoint of life that all people once had, and seeing the true reality of the world. Although most of the series is done in a standard "anime" style, the animation frequently veers off into other realms, including bullet time, black and white, stills, two elaborate sequences drawn as semi-animated manga and a couple of shots in episode five that recreate the look of South Park, or mosaic.
A common mistake by English-speaking fans is to say that the meaning of "Furi Kuri" in Japanese is "Breast Fondling." This mistake arises from the fact that "kuri kuri" is occasionally used by manga artists as a sound effect for breast fondling. In the anime itself, they make references to "kuri kuri" during the first manga scene, when Shigekuni describes kneading bread by making hand gestures that unmistakably resemble groping motions. Due to incredibly fast pacing of the scene, many fans mistake his statement as referring to "furi kuri" instead of "kuri kuri." Much Japanese onomatopoeia follows a pattern of being four kana long and having a sound repeated. "Furi furi" is also used as a sound effect in a later episode when Haruko is petting Naota's cat ears. FLCL's direct Japanese to English translation is: A Pretend Chestnut. Kuri or chestnut can also mean to twist. It would seem the best translation might be pretend twisted (distort, pervert) or pretend disarrangement (disturb the operation or functions [as in twisting]; also to make insane)."