The OGs of my blog will remember my mentioning this series a few times in the past. Most notably, it made the top 5 in my Top 10 on awful anime I came to love. That, however, was back in 2015, when my status as a person was still within a process of trying to overcompensate the right brain with the left. On a complete whim (literally), I decided to rewatch the series I remembered fondly as a lovely trainwreck of stupidity and sexuality. Does it hold up? Obviously not, but how much… not?
My revisiting Mayoi Neko Overrun! came with a wonderful introduction: literally the first scene of the first episode features a panty shot of a crying child. No warning, just a girl who lifts up her dress to use as a tissue to wipe her tears as she cries, with her infant panties full in view. It was then that I realized, “Ah. This is that kind of series.”
I beseech you, dear reader; should you find yourself a connoisseur of panty shots, this series is an absolute buffet. Panty shots aplenty, and I only watched six episodes of this before I dropped it outright. Chances are, if a woman (relative term; most characters are teenagers) is onscreen, they will undress to some degree, because why else would dudes watch this dumb series about cat cafés and specific anime stereotypes brought to life?
The answer is Daigorou, who is the greatest anime character of all time. He is my spirit animal, and the reason I continue to see anime as a legitimate medium of interest. His treatment in this series is of an unimportant background character that means little to anyone, and yet his insistence to have spoken lines and a presence is what makes him so adorable. He does next to nothing every episode, says little, and simply tries his best to be useful. Next to nothing is known about him, and as inferred from before, plots basically ignore him. He is the enigma of the series, who stands as a pillar of support and nothing more. I empathize completely.
There is an almost satirical edge to this series that could be seen as a fallback to the amount of nonsense that the cast partakes in each episode. For example, one character—who is a loli and is constantly being shown in skin-tight clothing—has obscene amounts of money to her name. In one episode, she drags the rest of the cast to random locations around the world just for the hell of it, getting there and back to Japan within a day on a B-2 jet. That doesn’t bother me as much as the constant attention dedicated to turning the female cast into gawk material.
Aside from the sexualization, there’s an issue with this anime and its cake. The cake is both silly and dramatic, in a way that makes it hard to take seriously in either direction. There is an ample amount of drama in Mayoi Neko Overrun!, almost hilariously so. It wants to be both melodramatic, with messages of family and commitment, while also featuring episodes where two girls play ping pong in loose yukatas in slow motion for four minutes. Satirical, sure, but it becomes very easy to use it as a scapegoat to showcase despicable or lazy conveniences without criticism. “It’s just a dumb anime, brah. Just watch the pretty ladies get flustered and hit the baka male lead, whom the viewer can relate to because they’re bland and wooden, that all women are attracted to.”
Granted with only six episodes rewatched, it’s entirely possible there’s some amazing meta commentary I’m missing with the final half of the series. Probably not, but it’s fun to consider. As it stands, both from the rewatch and my memory of the end (I remember a really overdramatic final episode), this is a series that you’ll love if you love everything that anime is negatively stereotyped to be. Constantly objectified women, rampant absurdity, and every clichéd story beat in the book.
Also Daigorou, the only saving grace to this series.
The rating for this series and all others can be found on MyAnimeList.
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