Dark Side Cat, a mysterious stray cat, dashes throughout the night city in punk clothing and plays pranks on humans he dislikes. He plays a game of cat and mouse with the city council, known as the "Stray Cat Hunt."
Dark Side Cat is an upright-walking feline with a killer fashion sense, a natural talent for parkour, and a desire to smash as many cars, stores, and kick as many human heads as possible.
Essentially, he's a giant asshole, who makes life for the relatively innocent humans of his town an absolute nightmare.
It's an intriguing premise for a series, and with its fast pace and occasional laughs, Dark Side Cat is a quick, enjoyable 6 episode, 6 minute watch.
However, there are flaws preventing this from being anything truly great or special. For a series based around Dark Side Cat's dastardly exploits, there simply aren't that many
action shots of him doing anything cool or unexpected with the exception of the first and last episodes. (Which are, not surprisingly, the best ones)
Instead, we get a lot of very generic, uninspired action shots. In fact, this often mirrors the story, too; Dark Side Cat's "sad" backstory is pretty much as wafer-thin and predictable as that of a JRPG protagonist, as are the personalities of the characters.
And frankly, one of the episodes, featuring the little boy, is downright bad and logically poor.
That being said, 5 out of the 6 episodes have genuine moments of laughter and excitement throughout, making this one of the better ONAs I've watched.
With regards to the art, it uses a very two-dimensional, cardboard cut-out style, similar to what one sees on "South Park". Clearly, budget was a factor, but it doesn't end up harming the series much.
The music consists solely of Dark Side Cat's theme, a catchy dance pop beat without any lyrics. It's nothing special, but helps set the mood for the action.
Overall, clocking in at a total of 36 minutes, Dark Side Cat is certainly worth watching for a viewer with any appreciation for action or humor, but it's nothing extraordinary, either.
Ankoku Cat is a six episode ONA from Fanworks, a studio I've never reviewed or seen anything from before. Mainly because they haven't done that much. I only found about ten anime listed as having had them work on them, most of which are series with really short run times. So, let's take a look at Ankoku Cat and try to get some idea of what they're about.
It's not a complicated story. A city is taking measures to deal with the stray cat problem. A problem which has escalated recently because of the titular Ankoku Cat, who has been causing problems for people with his
pranks and who humans assume to be the boss of all the other stray cats. Yeah, it's a simple story which is all you can really expect from a six episode series. Is it well done?
There are certainly issues with the execution in this. For such a short series they waste a lot of time. Each episode has a run-time of just over six minutes and a full minute of that is spent on the opening theme. And that's not the only way they waste time either. There are multiple episodes that barely connect to the main story. Look, I'm not against trying to have some minimal story in a really short series, but if you're going to do it you need to keep it tightly focused and not spend half your time on things that don't really have anything to do with it. On the other hand, having a short series without a story where the focus is on a cat playing pranks on people and causing trouble is also fine, but if you're going to do that don't bother trying to include a story. Just let it be about the shenanigans. Then we've got an episode that doesn't deal with either the plot or with shenanigans, focusing instead on a child learning to deal with death and the Ankoku Cat barely appears in it. Lovely. There's also the story itself. It doesn't really have any impact since the Ankoku Cat just gets through the obstacles it puts in his path really easily. I will say, to the series' credit, that it does have some funny scenes when it isn't trying to shove in plot. There are a few comedic moments that fall short, but most of them work pretty well.
There isn't much to say about the characters. They put in some back story for our “hero”, but it doesn't do much aside from giving him some token motivation for not liking humans. Aside from that the characters we see are just one-dimensional. I can't fault the series for that too much, though, since it is so short and couldn't really develop them well in the time frame it has unless it focused entirely on that.
The art is actually pretty bad in this one. The art looks blocky and the animation looks stilted and unnatural. It looks like it uses flash animation and I know that flash animation can look a lot better than this, I've seen things that used it and looked fabulous. But this looks like it was done by a single, relatively inexperienced person putting, maybe a half hour of work into each episode. I will say that I like Ankoku Cat's outfit. It is epically ridiculous. It looks like he's trying to be the front man of a Glam Rock band, or possibly like he's entering a figure skating competition. The only problem with it is that he's a cat and yet he stands like a human and his outfit is clearly designed so that it wouldn't actually fit a cat but since this is a short comedic series I'll let that pass.
Ankoku Cat is one of those series where nothing stands out about the acting. It's neither good nor bad. It's serviceable. The music can be pretty good. At least the music they play when the Ankoku Cat goes into action is good. The rest of it isn't bad but it is bland.
There isn't any in this series.
Ankoku Cat's biggest weakness is its lack of focus. If this had been a series purely about the comedic shenanigans of a cat in an absurd costume then it probably would have been pretty good, but then they throw in episodes about a child learning to deal with death or dealing with an underlying plot that no one cares about because it's so ill developed. It's still not a bad series but it can certainly be really boring at times. My final rating is going to be a 4/10. If the premise sounds appealing, feel free to give it a try. The plot is going to interrupt things before they get to be much fun but you still might have a bit of fun. Next week I'll look at Explorer Woman Ray.
Darkside cat is a strange, interesting show. It’s pretty much about a rebel humanoid cat that gets in trouble a lot with the law. In the course of one evening, chasing after a mouse, he breaks a fire hydrant, creates a traffic jam, and runs from the police. Now this show doesn’t really follow Dark Side cat but really what happens because of his interactions with the people of the city.
He himself is always silent with the same ‘bad boy’ look in his eyes and yet there are times that he actually does seem nice, mostly to the cats around the area. Each story
can mostly stand alone, having only Dark Cat to link them together except for 5 and 6 where they pretty much have to be seen together. It’s more talking about the people that he touches and not really about him. One thing I do wish is that we could get more info on Dark Side Cat instead of only hearing very little about his past in Episode 5.
The animation looks like it was created with flash, and its actually really well done as well in that nothing really seems out of place. They have really nice shadows and make them look perfect the dark night that is pretty much the base of the shows. My only problem is that in the animation, there is a character that seems like she would be a man character in the stories but she barely shows up. Action scenes contain a lot of speed lines and still images that seem like Speed Racer at times.
There is barely any talking and more sounds and music which are actually pretty cute. It works well. Basically, I wish there was more of this show.
Being a six episode anime, I expected Dark Side Cat to be short random minisodes. Instead, Dark Side Cat had a overall plot that revealed itself gradually, but didn't pick up until the next-to-last episode. Then everything went by rather quickly.
I have to admit the art was a little odd because I'm used to watching newer anime(2008 onward), but that is one of the reasons I liked this anime so well. It's quirky style was a refreshing change from anime norms.
Dark Side Cat is your typical anti-hero. A stray cat
who walks upright and fights based on his own whims and desires, to me he is a mesh between a mouthless Deadpool and Beast Boy in cat form.
Dark side Cat has a certain coolness about him that seems really arrogant and "jerk-wad-ish", but once I got into the anime a slight softness was shown and I wanted to snuggle up to him and treat him like a real kitty. This was a very enjoyable anime and if there was another "season" I would send it to the top of my to-do list.