Kuu Kuu Harajuku (originally titled Koo Koo Harajuku) is an animated children's television series co-created by Gwen Stefani for Network Ten, based on her Harajuku Lovers brand. The series debuted on Eleven in Australia on November 1, 2015.
Kuu Kuu Harajuku features G and the Harajuku Girls as they live in Harajuku. Together they form HJ5, a band, while their manager Rudie books them for gigs. However, something always interrupts their gigs.
Two seasons have currently aired with a third starting broadcast in Australia from August 2018.
The cartoon provides the examples of:
- Action Girl: All 5 girls are mainly like this when a villain captures them.
- Adorable Evil Minions: Panda Pete's KiKis, cute robotic stuffed pandas wearing stylish pants that kidnap Baby. When it comes to "doing their worst", they merely manage to jump on HJ5, hugging and tickling them.
- Animesque: The style looks kinda like a chibi hybrid anime-like cartoon.
- Bizarro Universe: Twice, in "Coulda Been" and "Control + Height + Dimension".
- Catchphrase: In season 2, a new catchphrase was added, "Tick Tock! Time to Rock!".
- Fantasy Keepsake: In the episode Control+Alt+Dimension, Love invents a machine that calculates alternate choice pathways, then falls asleep on it and is accidentally transported to an alternate reality where HJ5 is evil and their enemies are good. She gets the help of this reality's Rudie to return home and wakes up wondering if it was all a dream. Then the alternate Rudie stands up from behind the couch after she leaves the room and mentions he got pulled into the wormhole which sent Love back to her reality.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Among the Harajuku: Love is melancholic; Angel is phlegmatic; Music is choleric; and Baby is sanguine.
- Gratuitous Japanese: Just try to count the number of times everyone says "kawaii" in this series.
- Idol Singer: HJ5 is a pop star group.
- Kawaii: Kawaii is a frequently recurring theme throughout the series.note
- Panda-ing to the Audience: The mall coaster and some of the group's furnishings are designed with kawaiified, panda-like color schemes.
- Highlighted in "Pandamonium", where they encounter eccentric businessman Panda Pete, a man in a panda suit CEO of "Pandas in Pants" that sells fashionable clothing and toys, especially stuffed "KiKis", plush robotic pandas in pants.
- Percussive Maintenance: When Rudie accidentally drops a wet towel on the tour bus teleportation controls and causes it to randomly teleport around the planet due to shorting out, Love tries all sorts of technical repairs until the bus is teleported into space directly in the path of a flaming comet. She then shouts "WORK! WORK! WORK!" while hitting it with a hammer.
- Poke the Poodle: Panda Pete in "Pandamonium", who is more of an eccentric businessman with a strange (and a rather unhealthy) obsession for spreading kawaii to the world by finding the mythical element of "Kawaii-ium".
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Done twice in "Pandamonium":Love: I've come to the conclusion that Panda Pete suffers from mesocorticolimbic mediation cross-wiring.
Music: In real words?
Love: The desire for cute things has mutated into an obsession!
Music: What is it?
- Later on, when Panda Pete has drained the magical kawaii-ium out of Baby:
Love: It's a mutable exodimensional hexad.
Angel: Is that just a way to say "big blobby thing"?
Love [frustrated sigh]: If you want, we'll call it a "big blobby thing".
- You won't like Baby when's she's hangry. Complete with a physical transformation that increases strength, rage and reduces rational thought.
- In Drums of Doom, Rudie says that the drums "must not be fed after midnight" and in Emotizoms to "keep them away from water or they will multiply", referencing the movie series Gremlins.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: For a cartoon about an Idol Group, it's pretty surprising how many episodes focus around their manager.
- Team Pet: Chewie.
- The Wonka: Panda Pete, an eccentric man in a panda suit with an unusual obsession over kawaii in "Pandamonium".
- They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: A rare in-universe example, with Tizzie Lizzie resenting the fact that HJ-5 are now able to successfully complete concerts without something bizarre or inexplicable preventing them from doing so. Therefore, she captures them and forces them to perform a concert with staged interruptions. And then complains when Yummy Bear brings a team to rescue them, interrupting the interruption.
- Two Shorts
- Unobtanium: Kawaii-ium from "Pandamonium".
- WhatHappenedToTheDog?: Chewie disappears without acknowledgement in Season 3, to be replaced by four additional Monster Pets and the return of Yummy Bear as a recurring character.