The Chaotic Cacophony of Cats
Let's explore everyone's favorite catastrophe in Tom Hooper's Cats
Nearly a 100 years ago famed Russian composer Igor Stravisnky introduced one of his most seminal and lasting contributions to the musical world with the debut of his composition of the rite of spring. A musical piece so radical and jarring that when it first debuted in the Paris ballet in 1913 that it literally caused a riot in the theater. Nobody’s quite sure what spawned the riot, whether it was a publicity stunt or that the audience was not prepared for what they had witnessed. Something chaotic that would build the foundations of music for the century that followed, but also something that served as a harbinger for the next decades of chaos and brutality that would follow with World War 1 starting up a year later with the even greater horrors of world war 2 to come.
It was a herald for a chaotic century the likes of which no one had been prepared for, a harbinger of doom in a tumultuous new era. And now as we enter into a new decade of the roaring 2020’s I wonder if we’ve just seen the arrival of a new harbinger something so transgressive that audiences were not able to process it. Something that served as the culmination of decades of prior work to create something nobody could have ever been prepared for. A perverse manifestation of the old stagecraft of theater combined with the digital effects of powerful computer processing and the depraved sexuality of the internet to create something the world has never seen before, something it was never prepared for. What I’m talking about is of course Cats.
So I’ve had a perverse fascination with cats for all of my life. When I was a little kid I always loved waking up early on Saturday to watch Saturday morning cartoons and one thing I was always assaulted with was this commercial for the broadway stage show of cats.
I was always extremely confused by it, and cats had the weird distinction of being one of those off kilter things that just got embraced and accepted by the mainstream. But I mean c’mon look at it! It’s a bunch of humanoid cats that are stuck in what appears to be some sort of post-apocalyptic Terminator world as they all come out of destroyed junkyard wreckage as the priest chief ratty cat king ascends on a flying saucer hubcap towards what appears to be space?
It never made sense to me as a kid, I didn’t understand how such weird thing was being shoved down my throat as something that the whole family could enjoy. But I never saw Cats the show I just wished the commercial didn’t keep replaying so I could get back to my goddamn cartoons. It seemed like such a strange and alien thing to try and force upon children during Saturday morning. But as strange as that was the Cats Anti-Smoking PSA was probably weirder.
Cats endured for so long not because it was a great show, but because it was a spectacle that symbolized New York City Broadway tourism. It was a weird concoction of dance and spectacle was designed to serve as a perfect encapsulation of everything Broadway could offer to people who came from out of town without having to dive deeper during their stay. It was the theatrical equivalent to what modern day times square has become. A bit of a tourist trap designed to enrapture anyone who came from outside of town with the splendor and spectacle of the city in a bite sized consumable form that can easily be digested and could be repackaged on a VHS cassette to be taken home as a souvenir like the I Love New York t-shirts or a snow globe with the statue of liberty, and that’s probably why it endured for so long.
But nobody ever really tried to adapt it into a movie because they knew better. It was a bunch of nonsense songs that were designed to be pleasing to the ear, but they had no weight or substance. It just was a literal show about nothing. But Tom Hooper, one of those directors who makes middle of the road films that are always very popular at awards festivals because they are inoffensive art designed to appeal towards academy voters thought it was the purrrfect subject to tackle. A beloved musical that seems to at least have the illusion of a greater universal message. The kind of thing that would be great awards bait.
But when you combine a kind of mediocre director who’s not very good at directing musicals who usually has the strength of the material or performers do most of the heavy lifting for him like in Les Miserable, plus an all star cast all looking for that sweet sweet award bait what could go wrong… well everything apparently.
I love bad cinema, nothing delights me more then failed hubris or so bad it’s good cinema. I loved showing people Troll 2 in college, and whenever a misguided bomb like Valaryian and the City of a Thousand Planets arrives you know I’ll be the first in line to go see it. Also side note, if you went to see cats in theaters like I did then you have to see Valyarian and the City of a Thousands Planets… just trust me and drag a friend or two while your at it you’ll thank me.
So to me with all the bad reviews Cats was a must see, but what I saw was more than just a regular misguided bad movie. No what I saw was a culmination of the entire 2000’s digital age. It was like every technological advancement was leading up to this singular point. If nothing else the connection of the internet has only amplified mankind's perverseness. Now all kinds of weird people across the globe with the strangest proclivities and fetishes could gather together. Almost creating a singularity. Oh you think BDSM is edgy and transgressive? Well have you ever seen a furry orgy in the pale dark of the moonlight? Or how about vore or guru fetish art? What was once seen as transgressive is now pretty vanilla.
The instantaneous connection of everyone into a huge hive mind just seems to collectively accelerate our descent into madness. And now as we enter into a new decade it seems fitting that the arbiter to hearld this new age is a $100 million dollar musical furry fetish film that is likely to serve as an awkward sexual awakening for many an unsuspecting child who gets exposed to it. And Cats has everything. You’ve got the weird uncanny valley of CGI cat people essentially running around nude so we can see every single digital furry curve of their bodies.
It’s a film filled with so much sensual unintentionally erotic detail as well as high level performers like Ian Mckellen and Judy Dench trying to hold their dignity as the lick milk from a bowls or saunter about in a basket. And we got something for everyone. You like curvaceous Big Beautiful Women just get a load of all the feline curves of Rebel Wilson. Do you like vore? The sexual fantasy being eaten well just get a load of her devouring the human cockroach. Or how about just anyone eating anything, you like real fat cats? Do you like feeders, that fantasy of just making someone so fat with food they explode in a huge chunk of lard and diabetes, then we’ve got the James Cordon cat who just devours every piece of scrap from the trash to fill all the folds of his digital fat cat belly.
It’s a digital buffet of different fetishses and furry eroticisimin a visual orgy of pent up horniness. A cacophony of erect cat tails just ready to get it on as soon as the camera goes away. Like Tom Hooper unknowingly was making a $100 million dollar musical fetish film based on the collective desires of the darkest corners of the sonic fandom. Channeling thousands of weird pieces of art from 4chan, tumblr, and deviant art synthesizing it with a collection of some of the biggest talent of the decade to form an abomination, an emblem of this new era. And as we enter into the new decade and were greeted with environmental devastation with wildfires raging across Australia. A potential war with Iran and an escalation of never ending tensions in the middle east and on the cusp of the chaos of a new century and one of the wildest elections in US history leading us forward is Cats. Nothing but cats, Tom Hooper unknowingly has created the best emblem of the past two decades to lead us into the next. The harbringer is here and just like Igor Stravisnky’s Rite of Spring echoed into the turn of the century CATS is the bizarre amalgamation of everything analog and digital combined to hearld the chaos of the new century which is about to kick off into high gear.
And that is why I loved Cats as the pinnacle of so bad it’s good cinema, and as time goes on and we forge our way into whatever bizzare things the next age will bring just remember it was Rum Tum Tugger and magical Mister M Mistoffelees that showed you the way.
About the Creator
When not scrounging the internet for the best content for Jerrick Media, Isaac can be found giving scritches to feathery friend Captain Crunch.
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