Anime Review: Cat Planet Cuties

by David Majors

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When anime with abstract titles come to the Western markets, they usually get changed to something that is opposite of their content. But not with Asobi ni Iku Yo dubbed as Cat Planet Cuties in the West.
With a ridiculous—and very Japanese—title, could Cat Planet Cuties be good? No, but it’s not end-of-all-things awful. It’s just hopelessly subpar.

Truthfully, this may be the most harmless ecchi harem romantic comedy I’ve ever watched. It doesn’t feel the least bit insidious. Catgirl Eris is more like Sasami from Tenchi Universe trying to understand and insert themselves into humanity because humans are fascinating and fun (please note sarcasm). This is a refreshing change of pace from other shows of this genre where the hypersexual aliens are ready to mount the male protagonist at a moment’s notice.

Cat Planet Cuties

Caption: She’s so cute! Is she an alien or did she get dropped on her head?

The series’ strongest point may also be its biggest downfall. Cat Planet Cuties is a show that attempts to be more than its appearance, but shoots in too many different directions to land a clean hit. It wants to redeem itself with some espionage. Who doesn’t enjoy a spy story? It wants to redeem itself with some self-referential humor and fourth-wall breaking. I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve given a second glance at the occasional cat-eared curvaceous cosplaying cutie. It wants to redeem itself with a sci-fi war between Catia and Dogisia. It’s a tried-and-true formula, and that opening theme is way catchier than it has any right to be.

Unfortunate for Cat Planet Cuties, it is still Cat Planet Cuties. It still stars Kio, the main protagonist who means well but is in way over his head. He’s slightly more capable than the average main protagonist. Kio still has an uncle that is an annoying goof that tries to get a little too friendly with the girls because this is a harem anime. Eris is still a busty action princess whose personality might want you to check your blood glucose levels after a few episodes. Her Catian cohorts are walking who’s who of rom-com anime tropes of the genre. Am I intentionally glossing over them because they are not worth your time? Yes, I am.

Glasses Girl Aoi gets just enough screen time to be sympathetic in relation to the rest of the cast, but she’s just one of the many stereotypical characters and one of three that get enough screen time to be considered relevant.

Worst of the bunch is Kio’s so-called best friend, Manami. She does a marvelous job of being the antagonistic female neighbor to Kio. She kills a number of the genuinely funny moments by stumbling in and calling him a pervert because this is an ecchi anime. Manami is your perfect waifu if you hate yourself.

Cat Planet Cuties is a show that tries to be a gateway show for its genre. It wants to be everything to everyone, and at the same time, the ultimate sexual fantasy. It could also be seen a complete turn-off due to the fact that it is a ten out of ten on the Cop-Out Meter. While wanting to be more than what it is, it can’t help but fall into the fact that it is a by-the-numbers anime rom-com with just a few watchable splashes without being completely disgusting. Almost.

It tries, but it is still marred in its own awful, awful muck.

Cat Planet Cuties
Caption: Behold the Muck. Her name is Melwin. I apologize.


The Wrapup

Pros

  • A few comedic moments that are genuinely funny.
  • It attempts to be more than just a regular ecchi rom com

Cons:

  • Character tropes aplenty.
  • It attempts to be more than just a regular ecchi rom com, but it fails
  • Eris is 16 and we’re all terrible people.

Definitely Not Recommended