awake! judgement gun morphing!

When I first started watching Space Patrol Luluco, I thought it was more Trigger nonsense. Don’t get me wrong– that’s some of the best kind of nonsense. “YEEE-ART!” from Ninja Slayer has occupied a place in my colon next to “RYUU GA WAGA TEKI WO GO FUCK YOURSELF!” I wondered if putting one of my favorite anime creatives (Hiroyuki Imaishi) in a tiny five minute project while Trigger is also producing the glossy and high budget Kiznaiver at the same time is a good idea. Should he be driving the Trigger wheels?


Over the many bite sized episodes, Space Patrol Luluco grew on me. There is just something maddening entertaining about watching Luluco, Alpha Omega Nova, Midori, and Branch Manager Over Justice interact with each other. None of them listen to each other. It reminds me of the best parts of Gurren Lagann and KILL la KILL where I don’t know what I’m watching anymore but I can’t stop watching. It’s the times when I’m taking notes for a blog post and decide, “Fuck it, I’m not blogging this. I’m going to let it drown me instead.” The characters are all one note, but it works well in the context of a five minute anime. I don’t want Over Justice going “JUSTICE!” every thirty seconds for a twenty-four minute anime, but it works surprisingly well for this show. I don’t want Nova going on about how can’t feel emotions or sadness for twenty-four minutes as he totally doesn’t notice the cute girl head over heels for him, but it works a lot better here. I don’t want twenty-four minutes of Adult Swim-type gags, but it works in small doses– much like original Adult Swim comedies.


The big switch happens when Luluco’s bodacious pirate mom shows up. Space Patrol Luluco shifts from silly high school hijinks to debuting the Trigger Cinematic Universe. We all know Over Justice is “inspired” by Gurren Lagann and Inferno Cop, and he makes me want to back a Trigger Kickstarter to get the Gurren Lagann rights from Gainax. But Lalaco’s clothing has the Trigger-patented life fiber lines. Is it a cheap design gimmick? Is it just random Trigger nonsense? Is it foreshadowing?

What Lalaco does is propel Luluco and her cohorts through the Trigger Cinematic Universe. Every world they visit is a parody of an original Trigger property. They go to visit a KILL la KILL world where the life fibers have won and Guts… my god… GUTS!


Next, they visit Little Witch Academia where the Luluco characters get redrawn in the LWA style. There’s a certain style and substance clash when the LWA characters meet Luluco… it’s like enjoying a cheap beer with a high-end omakase sushi dinner.

Where do the Space Patrol go next? It’s not like there is an abundance of Trigger properties to visit. Well, they end up visiting the world created by Imaishi for a short for Hikedi Anno’s Japan Animator Expo, Sex & Violence with Machspeed. Yep, Luluco gets trapped with a sex doll that creams bad guys in white substance. For a medium like anime that is so wound up with the sanctity of a first kiss or spends an entire cour of episodes to lead up to a confession, Trigger’s very base and very crude sex jokes seem out of place. Again, I feel like I’m watching mid naughts Adult Swim than anime.

The finale arc kicks off with Inferno Cop showing up and giving Luluco a pep talk before heading to Trigger’s most recent show. Kiznaiver has been all about how to convey feelings and how empathy is important for human interaction. Well, Luluco takes up that exact topic. First, she docks with a ship (much like Ryouko in KILL la KILL and Simon in Gurren Lagann), and she confesses to the emotionless Nova while she battles with the Black Holeian (voiced by perpetual Trigger comedic villain Nobuyuki Hiyama).


By sheer will and sheer love, she breaks through to Nova in the most Trigger way possible. (Though I don’t think they will use this ending for Kiznaiver.. but they should!). We are shown that Nova has a Kiznaiver-like scar, thus competing Phase 1 of the Trigger Cinematic Universe. Bravo to Trigger for creating a better cinematic universe than Warner Brothers. The Black Holeian retaliates by increasing in size, much like an Anti-Spiral. Finally, Nova and Luluco stand together against him, reminiscent of Simon and Nia.

Space Patrol Luluco is a fantastic show for people who can appreciate the nonsense. It feels like Imaishi and the rest of Trigger are having fun making the show, and they are just doing whatever the fuck they want because they can. I can imagine Luluco as a four episode OVA if this were 2004. But in this day and age, a mini-anime seems like the right approach. Not every anime needs to be the same length nor be about the same magic high school or feature yet another time rewind mechanic. Anime needs to entertain, and Space Patrol Luluco entertains while dispensing JUSTICE.

Bonus Notes


I know it is total coincidence since Japan and America use different calendars– theirs revolves around Comiket and ours revolves around the NFL draft– but the episode where Luluco’s dad finally becomes human again aired the week of Father’s Day. A nice touch. Though I want a prequel about how a boring, stereotypical Japanese office drone bangs the sexy bodacious space pirate lady. How did they meet? What did he write on his Tinder profile to get her to swipe right?

Trigger is at their best when they run out of fucks to give and when they are subversive. It makes me want to go back and rewatch Inferno Cop. I have a stigma towards these short mini-anime, like a “Back in my day, anime was twenty-four minutes long with an OP sung by the main seiyuu and had an eyecatch at the twelve minute mark” attitude. But after watching this show and the excellent Wakako-zake, I’m in the “anime should be just as long as the anime needs” mindset. What do you know? Opinions can change over time.


Would I watch a five minute anime about Guts? Yes, yes I would.

Does everything need to be a cinematic universe? Yes, yes it does. Kyoto Animation Cinematic Universe about a high school that has a swim club, a baton club, a supernatural club, a light music club, and a brass band club? Yes, please. Sunrise Cinematic Universe where Heero pilots Wing Gundam against Spinzaku in Lancelot vs Shizuru commanding Kiyohime battling Natsumi in her powered armor fighting against Van in Escaflowne dodging attacks from Spike in his Swordfish. JC Staff Cinematic Universe where Taiga, Shana, and Louise triple pick Hanzo while the opposing Potemayo wipes them all using Bastion beep boop beep. The PA Works Cinematic Universe that is the darker Zac Synder version of the Kyoto Cinematic Universe. The Wit Studios Cinematic Universe that is just the 2016 Republican Presidential Convention. The Mari OkadaCinematic Universe where everyone is a teenager dealing with feelings and emotions of growing the fuck up.

3 Responses to “awake! judgement gun morphing!”

  1. AWAKE

  2. THIS POST HAS ALL THE JUSTICE!!!! What would your gun morphing be?

  3. I hope someone from Sunrise staff is reading this blog :D

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