Super Catgirl Nuku Nuku

(Nuku in a Bikini)



The Japanese name for this series is Bannou Bunka Nekomusume, which literally translates as All-purpose Culture Catgirl. Known in English as Super Catgirl Nuku Nuku, it is a six OAV series about a very cute female android with a cat's brain. The animation is not breathtaking, but is decent overall, and has enough cute details to keep it interesting. The music is pretty good, and I quite liked the OP, though I found the ED unremarkable.

Nuku Nuku was created by Takada Yuuzou, and the character designs and animation direction was done by Moriyama Yuji. It has now been completely released by A.D. Vision on three tapes, which I got to see on a big screen thanks to the UBC Anime Club. As soon there is a release on LD, they shall be mine!

In January 1998 a new 12-episode Nuku Nuku TV series was broadcast in Japan, accompanied by a new 12-episode set of OAVs. I have not seen any of the new stuff, and know little about it, but you might be able to find more information through the links down at the end of this page.

Due to the demise of the Venice archives, the clickable imagemap interface is no more. It looks like all the same images may be over at SUNET, so I may rebuild the interface one day.

Dramatis Personae

Natsume (Nuku Nuku) Atsuko (Hayashibara Megumi)
Nuku Nuku enters the first episode as a cat, but after a few minutes (and a few mortal injuries), her brain is transferred into the body of a red haired, green eyed android (model NK1124). She obviously has a few difficulties figuring out what is expected of her as a human, but her cuteness smooths over any major difficulties (at least with the male half of the population). Besides her enhanced physical strength, the only normally visible sign of her origins are a pair of cat ears which flip up out of her head when she's stressed. Presumably they are extra sensors or something of the sort. She also has a habit of taking off on all fours after mice, and lists her favourite food as fish, and passtime as sunbathing.

Natsume Ryuunosuke (Ikura Kazu)
Ryuu is Nuku Nuku's younger brother, and lives with his father, Kyuusaku. A remarkably intelligent and self-confident kid, he does his best to make sure Nuku Nuku fits in.

Natsume Kyuusaku (Kamiya Akira)
Ryuu's father, and Nuku Nuku's creator, he's a schoolteacher by day (he teaches Nuku Nuku's homeroom) and an obsessed inventor by night. Married to Akiko, he originally worked for her grandfather's company, but ran away when he didn't like the way his creations were being developed. He spends much of his time typing furiously on his computer.

Natsume Akiko (Shimazu Saeko)
Ryuu's mother, and Kyuu's wife, Akiko is a rather disturbed and obsessive woman. Her grandfather owns Mishima Heavy Industries, Kyuu's ex-employer. Her biggest goal in life is to get Ryuu back from his father, and is willing to throw some serious military hardware at the problem. No one ever ends up actually getting seriously hurt, but a lot of buildings get demolished.

Arisa (Hisakawa Aya)
Arisa is one of Akiko's henchwomen. She tends to be rather psychotic and likes shooting randomly to help relieve stress. She also is the only one who generally gets injured -- usually when the mech she's using to attack Nuku Nuku gets trashed.

Kyouko (Hiramatsu Akiko)
Kyouko is Akiko's other henchwoman. She's generally more focused on following orders and accomplishing the mission, and occasionally manages to restrain Arisa.

Episode Sysopses

Yes, there are six episodes in total, and I've only summarized three here. Perhaps if and when I buy the series for myself (so how about those LDs, ADV...) I'll finish up the last three.

Phase 0I

Script: NukuNuku1.script.gz

It's Christmas, and Ryuu is taking a pee-break in an alley while his dad waits in the van with their Christmas dinner of KFC. Ryuu picks up a cat on his way out of the alley, and tries to convince his dad to let him keep it as a present. Before they can decide, Arisa and Kyouko spot them from the Poison-1 fanplane and give chase. Kyuu manages to lose them by crashing into a pile of cars in a junkyard, but in the process, the cat is fatally injured. Ryuu wishes he had never picked it up, but his father tells him he can do something about it. [Cut.]

It's morning and time for school. Nuku Nuku is waking everyone up for breakfast, banging a knife on a pan. Nuku Nuku and Ryuu take off for school on Nuku's bike; she cycles rather wildly and passes all the traffic on the way. Nuku Nuku is very popular in her homeroom class, taught by Kyuu, and Kyuu has trouble getting the boys to stop trying to introduce themselves to her in the middle of the lesson. Unfortunately, Akiko's henchwomen spotted Ryuu on his way to school, and figure out where the school is. Akiko authorizes them to take the fanplane and go get Ryuu.

Kyouko manages to restrain Arisa and just look around until they finally spot Ryuu, at which point Arisa flips out and starts destroying the school. Nuku defends her family and destroys the Poison-1 (after being dropped from a few thousand feet by it). However, Arisa then comes out in a mech. Nuku makes pretty short work of it though, and she, Ryuu and their father go to lunch.

Phase 0II

Script: NukuNuku2.script.gz

Nuku Nuku, Ryuu and Ryuu's friend Kagewara Yoshimi are going to the beach. Yoshi is dubious about going on Nuku's bicycle (with a sidecar) as the trip takes three hours by train, but Ryuu reassures her it won't be a problem. They get there, and comments about two hour roller coaster rides are made. Meanwhile, Akiko is on the videophone to Kyuu, flipping out about how dangerous the beach is, and if Ryuu gets one scratch, she's taking him back. Akiko and her henchwomen head for the beach too.

Yoshi's scruffy uncle, Shinjyo, has a place near the beach, where they stop first. When he sees Nuku Nuku he goes flying back into his house, and reemerges much neater and hunklike. When they get to the beach, Ryuu and Yoshi are playing in the water, and Shin cautions Nuku she should be careful of getting sunburned. He offers to rub some oil he brought along on her, but she takes the bottle, drinks it, and heads off for a swim. Turns out she sinks. No major problem, and she scrambles her way back to shore.

The three of them crash for the night at Shin's place. Akiko's henchwomen sneak in during the night, and play a recording into Yoshi's dreams. In it, she goes to Akiko's yacht, where Akiko tells her that she is Ryuu's mother, and gives her a pretty dress. Yoshi wakes up and wanders down to the beach, with the rest following shortly. Nuku and Ryuu wander around looking for her, until the yacht comes around a point, and they see Yoshi and Akiko on the deck waving to them. Kyouko comes in a boat to take Ryuu to the yacht, and as soon as he's in the boat, Arisa pops up from the sand in an octopus mech to stop Nuku Nuku from following.

Nuku is losing badly in the fight with Arisa until Kyuu and Shinjyo show up in a land rover and ram it. Kyuu gives Nuku a set of RX73 mermaid attachments to allow her to swim out to the yacht and save Ryuu and Yoshi. Unfortunately, it turns out Akiko has sweet-talked Yoshi, and she wants to stay with Akiko and asks Ryuu to live with them. Nuku catches up with the yacht, but Arisa shows up too, and drags her down into the water, hoping the pressure will crush the android. Nuku Nuku headbutts the mech's front porthole until it cracks open, forcing Arisa to let go of her and scramble for the surface.

Back at the surface, they start fighting again, but Nuku Nuku gets the upper hand and throws Arisa into the air, and she crashes back down on the yacht. Ryuu saves his mother by pushing her out of the way, but she falls into the hole made by the mech. He's left holding on the the edge with one hand, and his mother with the other. Nuku Nuku saves the day by pulling them both out. Unfortunately, Ryuu has cut the hand he was holding on with, so Arisa thinks Akiko should get him back, as he was injured. Akiko concedes that she can't fairly do that, as he was hurt saving her life. She again swears to get him back though.

Phase 0III

Script: NukuNuku3.script.gz

Ryuu, Kyuu and Nuku Nuku have moved into Akiko's mansion. Apparently Nuku Nuku managed to broker the return, on the condition that Akiko learns to do all the housework and cooking. As this is Ryuu's greatest wish, she reluctantly agrees. After badly messing up her first attempt at cooking she spends a while breaking dishes. Arisa offers to use the company's new Gorem 2000 mech to eliminate Nuku, but Akiko says something about having to do laundry and takes off.

Nuku and Ryuu visit Ryuu's great-grandfather (owner of Mishima). He wants to play shooting games with military mechs, but Ryuu isn't into that idea, and suggests parasailing instead. Turns out great-grandfather has a wail of a time sailing around with Nuku Nuku pulling the parachute. Nuku gets distracted when she sees Akiko scrubbing laundry though, and great-grandfather crashes. Nuku Nuku has second thoughts about having Akiko doing all the work, and goes to see Kyuu about it. He reassures her that it's actually a test to see if Akiko can be truly selfless in her love for Ryuu.

That night Arisa decides she can't stand to see Akiko living like a slave, and leaves a taped goodbye message on her pillow before heading out on a long trip. From the message Akiko realizes that with all the work she's doing, she's not spending any more time with Ryuu than she did before they lived together. She flips out and goes for the Gorem 2000.

Nuku and Ryuu are playing some variation on basketball with great-grandfather when Akiko shows up in the mech. Ryuu tries to talk her out of fighting with Nuku Nuku, but fails. Nuku Nuku can't bring herself to fight with mama-san, though, and spends all her time dodging Akiko's attacks. Kyuu eventually comes to save the day with a big gun he made especially to interface with Nuku Nuku. When she refuses to use it he pulls out a little doll of her, Mini-Nuku, which he created to interface with the gun in case she was unwilling. He destroys the Gorem 2000 with a single shot, then he and Akiko go back to chasing each other around and shouting. Looking closing, Ryuu notices that they both look happy, so he decides everything is ok.

The story ends with them living separately from Akiko again, and Arisa, Kyouko and the fanplane are back with more heavy weaponry as the fight continues...

Other Nuku Nuku Web Links

This was the first Nuku Nuku page on the web, but in recent days many more have begun to appear:


Suggestions, corrections, additional material, and any other comments are all welcome. Any contributions will be credited appropriately.

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Super Catgirl Nuku Nuku
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Brian Edmonds <> September 7, 1998
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