Ever since the trailer for Tom Hooper’s big-screen adaptation of Cats dropped last week, one of the big questions surrounding the film has been just who, exactly, it’s for. We already know the general public’s reactions have ranged from disturbed to—at best—perplexed. Actual cats don’t seem to like it any more than us humans, either. One common musing among observers, however, has been, “Say, maybe this is some kind of furry thing?”
Furries, we will explain to you as if you are not already well aware, are people with a penchant for anthropomorphized depictions of animals. That interest in cartoon animals often manifests itself in the form of adopting “fursonas” and wearing mascot-like “fursuits.” It is by no means always a sex thing, but sometimes, yeah, it’s a sex thing.
So, what did the furries interviewed by these publications think of the slick, bizarrely proportioned CG-enhanced people-cats of Cats? For the most part, they hate them as much as everyone else. It seems that, generally speaking, furries are partial to a particular style of cartoon-like animal depiction, and the uncanny valley disaster that Hooper calls “digital fur technology” is something else entirely.
Speaking with The Cut, a Shiba Inu furry named AtlasInu said the Cats asthetic was, “not quite furry to me personally, more like humans with cat makeup and features added.” Another furry named Jib Kodi explained, “Many assume the fandom would be all about this. Okay, it’s got cat’s ears and tails. But look at it this way: I like Spider-Man, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I like spiders.” While we are not entirely sure if that analogy tracks, it does at least demonstrate that these furries aren’t buying what Cats is selling.
Other furries online indicated they wished that the cats involved had more cat features and looked a little less like pixies. Fair enough.
BuzzFeed, unafraid to ask the tough questions, just out and out asked their anthropomorphic sources, “Hey, are you guys cranking it to this shit or what?” Eolis, a lemur-man from Canada, told BuzzFeed that he wishes he could get horny to Cats, but it just ain’t happening. “Furries want something they can fuck/fap to and the Cats movie is not that,” he said.
Of course, this is a small sample size and lots of different people with different opinions count themselves as furries. Just as with any large, loosely knit group, surely there are those among its ranks who are turned on by a smoothly hirsute James Corden.
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