(click link to view)
Languages: English & Japanese with subtitles
Video: 4:3 NTSC Standard Aspect Ratio
Audio: 2.0 Dolby Digital
American Release Status: Unavailable
Creator: Yuzo Takada
Director: Yoshitaka Fujimoto
Character Designer: Seiji Kishimoto
Animation Director: Seiji Kishimoto
Animation Studio: Ashi Production
Project Banneko Dash
American Producers: ADV Films
Running Time: 100
Number of Episodes On This Volume: 4
1: The Happiness Came With Spring Breeze
2: Midnight Cats
3: Distance in Between Two - Close and Far
4: Akiko's Melancholy
Episode 1: The Happiness Came with the Spring Breeze
Ryunosuke, a typical Japanese teenage boy, is riding his bike watching the sunset beside him. As he crests a small hill, he passes both a large delivery truck and beautiful young girl with flowing greenish- blond hair. Her face, though, is hidden by a large hat.
Suddenly, a small cat leaps out in the road in front of the truck. Ryunosuke turns, hoping to help the cat, but before he can even move towards the feline, the girl has already dashed out in the road, scooped up the cat, and leap high enough into the air for the truck to pass safely beneath her. She lands neatly, standing straight up and cuddles the small kitty to her face, making a cute smile. With her hat blown into the nearby ocean but the events, her face is now visible to Ryunosuke, who comments to himself as part of a flashback-like narration "That was the first time I met Nuku Nuku."
Ryunosuke returns home to find Ms. Akiko's car in front of his house. "That's unusual. I wonder if she stopped here during work." He wonders aloud. He then heads in, calling out "I'm home." "Welcome back," a voice cheerfully greets him. Ryunosuke then heads into the living room, still distracted by the car out front, so he doesn't notice the girl sitting on the couch.
A crash comes from his father's office, and the sound of man and woman arguing comes from within. "Don't they ever get tired of that?" Ryunosuke asks himself. It is then that he notices the guest, and his face cannot hide his shock at seeing the girl he saw earlier now sitting in his living room. She rises up and goes over to him. Ryunosuke blushes and stammers as the girl introduces herself as Atsuko Higuchi (but call me Nuku Nuku, she tells him.) "I'm Ryunosuke... I'm Ryunosuke Natsume." he squeaks out in response.
The doors to the office burst open and Akiko, Ryunosuke's work-alcoholic mom, and Kyusaku, Ryunosuke's tinkerer dad, come out squabbling. Akiko gets in a few last verbal jabs and then does a complete 180 to become a sweet and caring mother. She grabs Nuku Nuku's hands and explains that she understands that Nuku Nuku is an orphan with nowhere to go, and she just cannot let such a sweet, young, innocent girl like her wander the street. She proceeds to tell Nuku Nuku that she can stay as long as she wants. Akiko then turns back to her shiftless husband and snarls that she is going back to work and may be there overnight and then she storms out.
"I guess we'll be eating instant for awhile." Ryunosuke says. Suddenly, a maniacal laugh erupts from Kyusaku. Both Ryunosuke and Nuku Nuku look at him with caution and concern in their eyes. Kyusaku just continues to cackle until he finally proclaims, "There will be nothing instant here! Right, Nuku Nuku?" "Hai," she replies in a sweet tone and winning smile that brings a blush to Ryunosuke's face.
And so Kyusaku and Ryunosuke sit down to a fantastic feast. "Amazing..." Ryunosuke says as he surveys the range of dishes before him. "We will eat like this every night, now that Nuku Nuku is part of our family." his father announces. "A part of our family?" Ryunosuke asks. And Kyusaku proceeds to explain that Nuku Nuku recently lost both of her parents in a traffic accident and that the trauma of the event has also robbed her of her memories. The poor girl can remember her name but not much more than that.
Meanwhile, at the offices of Mishima Industries, Akiko pounds away at the keyboard of her PC. As she continues to grumbled about her lazy husband, the speed and force of her typing increases until, with the loud proclamation of "stupid, stupid, STUPID!" she smashes the keyboard with an angry fist. "I did it again." she sighs as she replaces the broken keyboard with a new one.
Back home, Ryunosuke has retired to his bedroom to work on his homework but the vision of Nuku Nuku fills both his notebook (as doodles) and his head. Inside his fantasy, Nuku Nuku confesses that she fell in love with him from the moment they first met and then, under an idealized romantic moment, they kiss as cherry blossoms swirl around them. A dreamy look fills Ryunosuke's face, and he nonchalant says "It's not locked." in response to a knock on his door.
The door opens and Nuku Nuku enters, pushing a small cart loaded with dishes and treats. "I brought a nighttime snack." She tells Ryunosuke. "But I just ate dinner a little while ago." He says as he eyes the cart. "Father said you are a growing boy." Nuku Nuku replies and she leans over to look at Ryunosuke's books. "Are you studying?" she asks. Ryunosuke scrambles to cover up his doodles and hastily says that he is doing homework. Nuku Nuku smiles and leaves.
While Ryunosuke lays upstairs in his bedroom, cuddling a pillow and blushing furiously as he thinks about her, Nuku Nuku is now down in a hidden basement workshop with Kyusaku. He turns to her, and with a stern voice, orders her to remove her clothes. "Mode M2P," he commands. "Yes, master," Nuku Nuku says mechanically as she removes her clothes and lies down on a futuristic examination table. Kyusaku begins by scanning her (which show a robotic body beneath her pretty form) and other tests but each time he is rebuffed with a screen informing him that he must have a valid Mishima ID to proceed. "This is more difficult than the Pentagon," he mutters in frustration.
The next morning finds Akiko asleep at her PC, still muttering about how stupid her husband is. Her manager approaches her and gently calls her name until she wakes up. She hastily apologizes for sleeping, but the manager is not concerned. He has come to tell her that he has been called to appear at an executive meeting and that she is to go immediately to executive boardroom three.
Akiko goes as ordered, announcing herself as she enters. There, she learns that a "trial product" has escaped from one of Mishima's labs and it is now her assignment to recover it. A giant screen descends into the room and images of the "product" (a fighting "androbot") flash onto the screen. They are the same images that Kyusaku saw on his screens during his scans of Nuku Nuku.
The deal is then "sweetened" with promises of potential raises, bonuses, and promotions. All Akiko has to do is board a specially developed battle helicopter and monitor the machine as it goes through its tracking and capture maneuvers. Akiko agrees and she suits up, boards and takes off.
Meanwhile, back at the house, a groggy Ryunosuke stumbles into the kitchen, his father greets him and he mumbles good morning back. Then Nuku Nuku says good morning and Ryunosuke, with a stunned look on his face, races out of the kitchen. He returns moments later, fully dressed and acting suave, to say "good morning" again. He then heads off to school.
As he bicycles down the city street, he is oblivious to the sirens and bustle around him. Everyone is packing up and moving out. But, Ryunosuke is lost in another fantasy about Nuku Nuku (this time about her giving him a sensual kiss as he leaves for the day.) He is so lost in his daydream that he slams head on into a light post. A passerby tells him he should be more alert - everyone has been ordered to evacuate due to the Mishima weapons test, and he could get hurt.
With everyone evacuated to safety, Akiko and the warcraft begin their attack. She fires two missiles into the empty area (which is made even safer because the missiles are programmed not to attack humans) which slam into an empty building. When there is no response from the androbot, Akiko fires another volley.
Nearby, Nuku Nuku strolls down the empty streets trying to find an open market. But, she has no such luck. She does, though, manage to meet the cat that she rescued the day before and she scoops him up. It is as she cuddles the cat that she hears a voice in her head that tells her it is her duty to protect all life and orders her to go to "tactical mode." "Yes, master" she replies.
Just then, the two missiles explode beside her, tearing her dress from her body. But, Nuku Nuku is unharmed and she proceeds to undergo a transforming that results in her wearing a tight fitting battle suit and a dark blue visor with mechanical "cat ears."
Nuku Nuku goes on the offensive and quickly engages the helicopter gunship. Akiko and the craft respond by changing mode and becoming a huge robot that then begins combat with Nuku Nuku. But despite landing a number of direct hits on the android, she is unharmed. Nuku Nuku then attacks and swiftly damages the machine to a point where Akiko has to eject. The helicopter then explodes in a huge fireball.
Ryunosuke, having watched from his bike, screeches to a halt at the battle scene. He spies Nuku Nuku but does not recognize her. Nuku Nuku then swiftly departs, leaving Ryunosuke mystified to whom the heroine might have been.
Up on a nearby roof, Nuku Nuku surveys the city below her as she tries to piece together fragments of images that seem to match the with the voice she has been hearing in her head. This is where the episode ends.
Episode 2: Midnight Cats
With the previous day's battle over, life has gotten back to normal. In fact, Akiko and Kyusaku have even decided to take a short three-day vacation to a hot spring. But, they are leaving the "kids" (19 year old Nuku Nuku and 14 year old Ryunosuke) at home.
As they pack the car, their next door neighbor, Momoko Ishiyama stops by and asks where they are going. She has her 6 year old daughter Noriko with her. After being told about the vacation and being introduced to Nuku Nuku, she leaves to take Non-chan to the kindergarten and mom and dad Natsume leave for the springs.
With his parents gone, Ryunosuke immediately slips into daydream mode and spins fantasy about what could happen at night or at dinner. The latter causes him to have yet another intimate moment with a light post as he again "falls asleep" at the wheel of his bicycle.
This time he takes his spill right in front of Noriko. Noriko, it turns out, is a very mature kindergartner. When there are no adults around, she talks to Ryunosuke as if she were the same age as he, accusing him of looking forward to being alone with a sexy young woman and teasing him about his virginity. But, as soon as her mother appears, Non-chan is back, a cute little girl.
Mrs. Ishiyama invites Ryunosuke and Nuku Nuku over for dinner and Ryunosuke, looking forward to a private dinner with Nuku Nuku, politely declines. But, Noriko tricks Ryunosuke and in the end, he accepts the offer. During the meal, Mrs. Ishiyama makes an innocent remark about how she thinks of Ryunosuke as a younger brother and then qualifies comment by saying that it would be more likely for Ryunosuke to be Nuku Nuku's young brother then hers. This, of course, gets Ryunosuke wondering about how Nuku Nuku really thinks about him.
Meanwhile, Mishima Industries has not been sitting by idly. The executives have decided, with the failure of the helicopter assault, to try something risky. They have another version of Nuku Nuku but this unit is unfinished. But, it may be the only thing they have that can catch their wayward product. So they agree to put the unit action, and they send it after Nuku Nuku.
The first meeting between the two units occurs as Nuku Nuku is returning home after picking up some milk for the next day's breakfast. As she walks down the street, a powerful blast strikes the ground just in front of her. Nuku Nuku quickly flips out of the way and the Mishima unit lands in the street just a foot away.
But, it is dark and Nuku Nuku cannot get a good look at the unit's face. They prepare to fight but are then interrupted by people from the nearby buildings who have come to their windows to investigate the noise. The Mishima unit does not want the attention and makes a quick escape, leaving Nuku Nuku behind.
Nuku Nuku comes back to the house to find Ryunosuke taking a bath. She decides to offer to scrub his back, and she removes her clothes, picks up a towel and heads into the bath. Unfortunately for Ryunosuke, his greatest dream is also his worst nightmare. Faced with a nearly naked Nuku Nuku, Ryunosuke panics.
His shock over the incident is so great that he does not get a wink of sleep. And things get even more difficult as time goes on. Having to sit in the living room and listen while Nuku Nuku showers is an exquisite torture and it does not get any easier when she comes out dressed in just a long, thin t-shirt.
Nuku Nuku notices Ryunosuke's discomfort but she is puzzled by it. She tries to talk about it with him, but she misunderstands the reason for his uneasiness. Ryunosuke attempts to explain but the words just won't come out. Nuku Nuku gets up to go to bed and Ryunosuke tries to stop her and they end up on the floor, atop one another.
Ryunosuke tries to take advantage of the moment to admit his feelings aloud but they are interrupted by Noriko, who has lost her cat and wants their help finding him. While Noriko and Ryunosuke search together in one direction, Nuku Nuku goes in the opposite direction by herself.
Eventually, with the help of her "cat ears," Nuku Nuku tracks the sound of Mia-chan, the missing cat, to a dark construction site. There, she encounters the Mishima unit again. This time, Nuku Nuku demands to know who is attacking her and gets the name "MIFX-N2-013" in response. "Did you forget? It's me. I'm you." says the machine as it steps out of the shadows to reveal a twin of Nuku Nuku.
The Mishima Nuku Nuku attacks but Nuku Nuku does not respond. Mia-chan had chosen the worst possible time to appear and Nuku Nuku sacrifices herself to protect the cat. But, the blast does not cause any harm and serves as the trigger for Nuku Nuku to switch into tactical mode.
The two androbots battle and both manage to draw "blood." Nuku Nuku's is red while the Mishima units "blood" is a black oily fluid. Noticing this, the Mishima unit demands to know why only Nuku Nuku has red blood but Nuku Nuku does not know the answer. They battle on and eventually, Nuku Nuku prevails.
As the Mishima unit lays on the ground, one arm gone and gaping wound in its stomach, it asks Nuku Nuku why she could far exceed the known abilities of the androbot but again, Nuku Nuku does not know the answer. She can only watch in silence as the MIshima unit dies, and then self-destructs. "Let's go home. Our home." she tells Mia-chan. This is where the episode ends.
Episode 3: Distance in Between Two - Close and Far
Having failed to capture Nuku Nuku with a duplicate, Mishima Industries turns to a new plan hatched by one of their brightest (and strangest) minds. Ooizumi, the number 5 genius within the company, devises a plan in which an androbot flower girl will hand out free flowers to all the pretty girls in the town and when Nuku Nuku touches one of the flowers, it will change colors and signal the flower girl to come and capture her.
Meanwhile, at the hot springs, Kyusaku and Akiko enjoy the pleasures of a hot spring resort. While they sip morning sake in the steamy waters of the spring, they wonder how Nuku Nuku and Ryunosuke are faring back home.
Well, for Ryunosuke at least, not that comfortably. Still upset over the "fall and fondle" incident of the night before, he decides to sneak out of the house to go for a mind-clearing walk. But, Nuku Nuku hears him and asks to come along. Not before long, they are taking in the sights, walking through the busy markets and eating out together.
As it would happen, they meet the Mishima flower girl, unaware of her true purpose. The flower girl calls Nuku Nuku and Ryunosuke a "nice couple" and gives them a flower. Ryunosuke accepts the gift, so the flower does not immediately recognize Nuku Nuku. Later, as they are eating their lunch, Ryunosuke notices Nuku Nuku acting like a cat after finishing her meal and makes an innocent comment abut it. This causes Nuku Nuku to become silent and appear crestfallen.
Worried that he upset Nuku Nuku somehow, Ryunosuke asks her to forget about the comment and he hands her the flower, She takes it and it immediately changes from red to blue and signals the flower girl. The Mishima androbot swiftly pulls out a flowery bazooka and dashes off to capture her prey. But by the time she reaches the restaurant, Nuku Nuku and Ryunosuke have left, leaving the flower behind.
Ryunosuke and Nuku Nuku continue their day of fun, spending time in an arcade and then stopping in a park to watch the sunset. Ryunosuke leaves Nuku Nuku for a short while to get crepes for both of them. While he waits at the stand, a playboy with a Porsche spies Nuku Nuku alone and approaches her. He invites her to join him for a ride in the car, and it is as the offer is being made that Ryunosuke, who has now decided that this is official his first date with Nuku Nuku, returns.
He is shocked to see Nuku Nuku smiling and chatting with the older man, and he drops the crepes. He then marches up to Nuku Nuku and tells her that they are going home. As they walk away, Nuku Nuku tries to get Ryunosuke to explain why he is mad but Ryunosuke just runs off. Upset and not watching where he is going, Ryunosuke ends up falling into the shallow river along the road. Nuku Nuku dashes down, and, crying in concern, hugs him tightly.Ryunosuke realizes that he was wrong to be acting so jealous and not trusting Nuku Nuku and they patch things up.
Meanwhile, the flower girl has grown tired of waiting for "Miss Target" to show up and so she decided to launch a few missiles with the hope that they will draw the target out. She races through the town; firing rockets at any uninhabited building she can find. In her rush, she bumps into Ryunosuke and Nuku Nuku, still unaware that Nuku Nuku is her real target, and Ryunosuke realizes that the girl is heading straight for his empty home. He takes off in pursuit.
Seeing Ryunosuke in potential danger activates Nuku Nuku self-defense mode, and she partial transforms (her visor, gloves, and "ears" appear) and she rushes into action as well. She stops one wayward missile and follows the flower girl as she races ahead. Ryunosuke manages to beat the flower girl to his house and convinces her not to fire on his home. But, the girl does end up accidently firing a blast into a closed flower shop and seeing all the ruined flowers causes her to despair.
Nuku Nuku lands silently behind the girl and notices that the girl has hurt her arm and that her circuitry is showing. Nuku Nuku deactivates her battle mode and bandages the girl's arm, telling her not to worry, she will find her target someday.
Back home, Kyusaku returns, huffing and puffing as he carries in the bags. Ryunosuke asks where his mother is and he is told that she was called back to work. There, Akiko is informed, by the shadowy executive board, that she has been promoted to head of the renegade androbot recapture program. This is where the episode ends.
Episode 4: Akiko's Melancholy
With her new assignment at hand, Akiko decides to celebrate by cooking breakfast for her family. Delectable dishes emerge as she carefully prepares all their favorites. Upstairs, Nuku Nuku awakens and comes down to find Akiko hard at work. She insists that Akiko allow her to finish the cooking since Akiko has to go and work all day. The two continue to politely disagree until they are interrupted by the ultra-low fly over of a fast moving spy plane. Its wake shakes the house and ruins the meal.
On board the jet, Kyoko and Arisa, the troublesome twosome, are squabbling as well. But, their argument is not good-natured and leads to the destruction of the plane and considerable damage on the ground. This, in turns, results in Akiko being called into work even earlier than expected, so that she can deal with the aftermath.
In anger, she punches a vase, causing a cut on her hand. Nuku Nuku, seeing the blood, immediately begins to lick the wound. Kyusaku and Ryunosuke enter, seeing the strange scene and Akiko, flustered by Nuku Nuku's strange behavior, makes a hasty exit towards work.
At work, Akiko confronts the two ladies, who are now assigned to her, and informs that because of their actions, they will be required to work for Mishima Industries without pay for the next 3 years. Dismayed, the women plead for forgiveness but Akiko does not relent. Arisa, the bubbly one of the two, then states that they will just have to get part-time jobs to cover their living expenses and they turn to leave. Akiko slips in a parting shot, reminding them that Mishima employees are not allowed to hold part-time jobs.
Back home, Kyusaku again attempts to access the mysteries within Nuku Nuku and, again, is blocked by the powerful security systems. Nuku Nuku, unaware of the passage of time while she is in the scanner, then discovers that there is no food in the house and she apologizes to Kyusaku and Ryunosuke that dinner will be late, since she needs to run to the market.
But, Kyusaku has a better idea - let's eat out! Ryunosuke is all for it but Nuku Nuku thinks that they should wait for Akiko. But, she is overruled and off they go. Of course, Akiko comes home and finds the home empty and dark, She got out of work earlier, stopped at the market, and was looking forward to a wonderful, home-cooked meal with her family. But, she rationalizes that perhaps they all went jogging together and she heads to the kitchen to cook dinner.
The gang returns from "Benny's" to find a full meal awaiting them. Akiko, with a grim look on her face, greets them and is dismayed to hear that they had just eaten. She flips the table and spills the dinner on the floor in anger. But, Kyusaku defuses the moment by kissing his wife and then carrying her off to their bedroom. As they pass, Ryunosuke wryly comments that if they keep that up, he will have a little sister or brother soon. Confused, Nuku Nuku asks how? Why? And Ryunosuke blushes at the thought.
Meanwhile, the two "office ladies," Kyoko and Arisa, hatch a plan to get themselves out of the doghouse. They figure if they capture the missing androbot, they will be heros and all sins will be forgiven. Unfortunately, they decide to use the same game plan that failed before.
They steal another plane, this time a fighter, and roar off in search of the androbot. Of course, Akiko decided to attempt cooking breakfast again and, as expected, the jet flies over, destroying the meal. Akiko, fully aware of who must be at the stick, swears that she will not go easy on the two.
Up in the jet, the two ladies have only a vague idea of what they are looking for. This leads to them squabbling again and the arguing leads to missiles being fired. At first, the missiles are the special "life saver" missiles that will not attack people or cows, as Arisa announces to the crowds below but Kyoko goofs and the safeties are deactivated and the now deadly missiles begin to rain down on the city.
This prompts Nuku Nuku into action, and she races after the jet. She positions herself on a rooftop, and the girls in the plane spy her and attack. But, their weapons have no effect and, in frustration, Kyoko slams her fist down - on the self-destruct button. The plane explodes and the two would-be heros end up splashing into the ocean.
The girls decide to stay where they are, their first wise decision, since an enraged Akiko is waiting for them at the office, promising to make them work free for the rest of their lives. Akiko then collapses in tears at her desk, wishing she had never been promoted.
Later, the Natsume family gathers for dinner, which is finally a home-cooked meal by Akiko that made it safely to the table. Everyone enjoys it, and Kyusaku and Akiko tease each other playfully. Afterwards, everyone goes to bed, except Nuku Nuku, who climbs out onto the roof and stares the moon. In her mind, she hears a voice calling her and she just pulls up her knees to her chest and lets the wind blow through her greenish-blond hair. This is where the episode and volume ends.