Kuu Kuu Harajuku
Kuu Kuu Harajuku is a Japanese-influenced animated children's television series created by singer-songwriter Gwen Stefani. It is based on her Harajuku Lovers merchandise brand, and the show doubles as a brand itself, with a line of tie-in products by Mattel. The show follows a teenage girl group called HJ5 and their manager Rudie as they live in a fantasy version of Tokyo called Harajuku City. HJ5 is a quintet: the four Harajuku Girls (Love, Angel, Music, and Baby) with their leader G. Episodes follow the band members and Rudie overcoming obstacles preventing them from performing.
The show follows a teenage girl based on Gwen Stefani, nicknamed G, and her friends Love, Angel, Music, and Baby, as they form the up-and-coming band HJ5. HJ5's clumsy manager Rudie works hard to book performances for the band, but their gigs are always interrupted. The band always manages to overcome challenges using their combined strengths: G's leadership, Love's intelligence, Angel's creativity, Music's bravery, Baby's enthusiasm, and Rudie's determination.
A villain named General NoFun and his assistant, Commander Bo-Ring often causes problems for HJ5 as they pursue a world without any entertainment. Other supporting characters include Twisty T, a famous music producer whom Rudie is desperate to impress; Say-Wah, an obsessed HJ5 fan who wants to join the band; Colonel Spyke, a stern soldier who dislikes pop music; and Mauve Madison, a talk show host who reports on HJ5.
カワイイじゃない理由 (Why It's Not Kawaii At All)
- The character designs are creepy, ugly, disturbing, and oddball since they try so hard to look so cute (note, EVERYTHING in the world always has to have something cute on it. Even PhantomStrider thinks that the character designs are copy-pasted) but fail and look like rip-offs of the Bratz.
- The songs that the show offers in every episode are generic pop songs, considering that this show was made by Gwen Stefani, a pop singer, that sounds way too cheesy and cringy. The theme song is probably the worst, since Gwen sings the song, but sounds bored out of her brains while singing.
- Even Victorious, another Nickelodeon show, has songs in every episode (which are pop songs, just like this show), but the songs in that show are catchy, and they aren't generic nor are they cringy compared to the songs in this show.
- Flat stories in every episode (especially in season 1). You got the band always getting into trouble just because they did something wrong, but then realize their mistakes, fix the issue, and it's over.
- This show is influenced by Japan, yet there is nothing that looks like Japan. Instead, it's all influenced by...wait for it...kawaii. It makes sense, at least. The characters are also supposed to look Asian, but as said before, they don't look anything like it.
- The naming makes no sense. For example, the main characters are named after cute things though also based on the Harajuku Girls band itself by their band names (i.e. Love, Angel, Music, and Baby). The show's title doesn't make any sense, either.
- The Flash animation is very cheap, choppy, robotic, and stiff, to the point that it gives the Flash animation from seasons 4-6 of Johnny Test and the later episodes of the 10th season of The Fairly OddParents a run for their money.
- The characters are also one-dimensional. For example:
- G is a generic leader.
- Love is a generic nerd.
- Angel is a generic teenager.
- Music is a generic tough girl
- Baby is a generic cute girl.
- Out of all of the characters, Music is the most unlikable due to her abrasive and rude nature.
- Rudie (despite his humor in the show) is often used as a punching bag, by the girls. Literally, like at the end of one episode, where Music, Baby, and the rest of the girls were furious at him and they use their color guns to shoot him.
- The plot/writing in each episode feels rushed, mean-spirited, or annoying. From the girls' poor treatment of Rudy to the plots being so generic that you could swear they were slapped together in a single afternoon, almost every single episode of the show has one of these issues that is so blatantly obvious just by watching it that it sticks out like a sore thumb.
- Some bad morals here and there, that's all we can say. For example, the aforementioned scene where the girls attack Rudie with colored guns sends the unintentional message that "if someone annoys you, it's alright to attack them", which is a horrible message to send to anyone, especially young children, who this show is primarily aimed at.
- The villains such as General NoFun, Commander Bo-Ring, Phillipa Kropp, Say-Wah, Sammy Starr, Madame Shhh, and Monotone are also bad and\or have laughable names and have stupid designs in the show as well. Not to mention that the names for the girls themselves aren't much better.
- Unexpected Cliffhanger: It doesn't reveal what would happen when the Tour Bus is arriving since General NoFun had sabotaged the teleportation drive, unfortunately.
- Rudie, Jimmy, Mauve Madison, and some others in this show are tolerable and likable characters.
- Some good episodes here and there like "Waves of Love", "Candy Blossom Flower Festival", and "Labor of Love" along with many seasons 2 and 3 episodes like "An Imaginary Friend in Need" and "Wacky Wednesday".
- The villains, despite having laughable names, can be interesting villains. Though some villains are kinda threatening.
- The theme song can be catchy sometimes.
- Seasons 2 and 3 are a slight improvement as they switched from Flash to Toonboom, being less robotic and a bit more expressive as it looks a little cuter and less mean-spirited despite some episodes.
- Some songs are pretty catchy despite being a bit generic.
- The main characters can be interesting as the later two seasons made them a bit less stereotypical.
- The soundtrack is a little interesting as it uses some kind of 16-bit styled music.
And to THINK Face Freeze! had disturbing scenes...
- Kuu Kuu Harajuku currently holds a rating of 2.7/10 on IMDb. Despite the mixed reviews from critics, the show received overwhelmingly negative reviews from audiences, with CSM (Common Sense Media) giving the show a 2/5. It is considered to be one of the worst shows to air on Nickelodeon and its sister channel Nick Jr. In addition, it is considered to be one of the worst Family Channel shows to air in Canada.
- Kuu Kuu Harajuku, following the shutdown of NickMom, was reported to be the first TV-Y7 show (excluding Rugrats) to be aired on the Nick Jr. channel, followed by the Alvin of the Chipmunks reboot, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Winx Club, Mysticons, and several others. Unlike these other shows, this one was promoted on the Nick Jr. channel.
- Gillian Carr has also directed shows such as The Eggs, Faireez, SheZow, and Flea-bitten.
- Here is the first episode. Watch at your own risk (if you have a VPN)!