Found this thanks to our friends at Animation World Network: “Jellyfish Pictures’ kids and family content division, Jellyfish Originals, has acquired rights to adapt Dermot O’Leary’s book series Toto the Ninja Cat into an animated series. The book series, illustrated by Nick East, is inspired by Dermot’s own cats. The show will be based on Toto, a partially sighted cat with razor-sharp senses, a nose for danger and a crime-busting spirit of adventure, incorporating themes of friendship, inclusivity, and winning in the face of adversity.” No word yet on when and where we’ll see it, as production has only just begun.
We’re mostly about anthropomorphic animals around here, obviously, but now and then it’s interesting to find a project about real-life non-humans and their adventures. Such is the case with Four-Fisted Tales: Animals In Combat, a new non-fiction graphic novel by Ben Towle. “In virtually every military conflict in recorded history animals have fought — and often died — alongside their human counterparts. While countless stories of the men and women who’ve served in the trenches, jungles, and deserts of the world’s battlefields have been told, Four-Fisted Tales: Animals in Combat shares the stories of the animals who fought alongside them. From Hannibal’s elephants in ancient Rome to mine-sniffing rats in Vietnam and everything in between, Four-Fisted Tales highlights the real-life contributions of these underappreciated animal warriors. Whether in active combat or simply as companions, these animals served and made their mark on history.” It’s available now from Dead Reckoning.
Bear with us here, as if you just watch the following trailer, you may be a bit confused as to what it actually has to do with the furry fandom. You'll just have to take our word that there is actually a fairly important, fun furry character in this series, despite the fact she's in less than a second total of the trailer. (If the video below isn't visible, try this link.)
Star Trek: Lower Decks is the eighth television series (if you count streaming series as such) and the second animated series in the long running Star Trek franchise. The first three seasons of the show are available from the Paramount+ streaming service; the fourth season will begin airing September 7. In a tribute to the original animated Star Trek series's catperson alien Caitian crewmember Lt. M'Ress, Lower Decks's supporting cast includes Dr. T'Ana.
The Amazing Maurice (trailer) is a 93-minute UK-Germany computer-animated film released in late 2022. Directed by Toby Genkel and Florian Westermann, the screenplay by Terry Rossio (Shrek, and many others) is an adaptation of the 2001 children's fantasy novel The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents by Terry Pratchett.
"One day, when he was naughty, Mr. Bunnsy looked over the hedge into Farmer Fred's field and it was full of green lettuces. Mr. Bunnsy, however, was not full of lettuces. This did not seem fair."
-- from Mr. Bunnsy has an Adventure
Set in Pratchett's Discworld comedic fantasy universe, The Amazing Maurice is the story of a cat (Maurice, voiced by Hugh Laurie) and a group of rats who have acquired speech and intelligence. Together they travel from town to town with a young human musician named Keith, running a pied piper scam. Maurice wants them to make as much money as possible, but the rats would like to move on and find a place where they can live in peace and harmony, finding inspiration in their revered text, Mr. Bunnsy has an Adventure.
Lackadaisy, from Iron Circus animation, based on the webcomic by Tracy J. Butler, has put out a teaser trailer for a first season of episodes. This season of episodes will be crowdfunded through BackerKit, which has currently reached the million dollar total donations mark, which is enough to fund the full goal of five episodes.
The comic Lackadaisy (sometimes known as Lackadaisy Cats) tells the story of the titular speakeasy in a fictionalized version of St. Louis, Missouri during the Prohibition Era of United States history. The cast is comprised entirely of fictional cats, so it is furry. The crowdfunding campaign is prominently mentioning it's 2011 nomination for an Eisner Award in the category for Best Digital Comic, but it also has won the Ursa Major Award for Best Graphic Story. A pilot episode of the show was released earlier this year to YouTube.
Is In a Dog's World set in a dog's world? Well, yes and no. Humans have vanished from Earth, and several species are now "uplifted," gaining human-level intelligence and an anthropomorphic form. The story focuses on dogs and cats, which are now the main inhabitants of North America, and there, if you'll pardon the expression, dogs rule the roost.
Everywhere she looked in the world, it was dogs on top. Politicians, CEOs, the biggest celebrities, even the most innovative scientists -- they were all dogs.
Our main character, Katasha, is a tabby point Siamese cat, preparing for her high school prom and awaiting the results of her college application. She is not happy with the status that most cats have and wants to be a success. As dogs are successful, that is her aim: not to be a dog but to be a part of their world. She wishes to emulate the traits that dogs possess, wants to go to a predominantly dog college, and desires to date a dog.
Klonoa was a bit after my time. While anthro platformers were a big household staple in the earlier years of my childhood, by the time I was entering my teenage my family trended toward more first-person shooter titles. We didn’t get an original PlayStation, and went for an N64 instead. That being said, last year’s remaster was a great opportunity to play a classic anthro platformer that I never got a chance to. Was it as good as the niche audience for this strange cabbit-like character laid it out to be?
The remaster comes with two games, and I have played through both. In short, the first game came as a bit of a surprise to me and had gameplay and story elements that challenged me as a player.
In terms of gameplay, both games have similar mechanics and feel like a mixture of early Kirby three dimension titles mixed with Mario 2 (US) combat where you pick up enemies to throw them at enemies and objects instead of sucking them in.
Playing the second game so quickly after the first caused a bit of a disappointment as it didn’t do things that the first hadn’t already done better. I enjoyed Phantomile more than I did Lunatea’s Veil. If there was a graphical difference in the titles in their original release, this remaster eliminates it and both look good.
I will go into more detail as to why after the header, as it will go into a bit more of the game’s content with some spoilers.
Before Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, even. How about DreamWorks Animation's new studio bumper? It's a bit ostentatious, even a bit overly pleased with itself. Maybe goes on a little long. But, then again, what studio bumper doesn't, nowadays? But, being a celebration of DreamWorks past triumphs, it's interesting to note what franchises were chosen to be spotlighted.
Right out the gate, the Bad Guys are getting quite a vote of confidence, despite being the new guys with one movie under their belts. So I think it's safe to say we're getting a sequel. Also for furries, the Kung Fu Panda series is featured, and we already know that's got a fourth movie coming. The How To Train Your Dragon series is also represented by Toothless, despite the fact that the last movie came to a very decisive story end. It's one of the more acclaimed franchises of DreamWorks, so it has to show up, and even if there are no more movies, smaller screen spinoffs are still happening. There are also appearances by the Trolls and Boss Baby franchises, but they aren't furry, so who cares?
There are some notable absences, however. Despite featuring four movies, the Madagascar franchise is ignored. Spirit, you know, the one with the horse? That somehow managed two movies, but is apparently not an ongoing concern. And obviously, the Shrek franchise is prominently featured, but the star of the movie we're about to actually start reviewing is not. Maybe he'll show up in the bumper for movies he's not the star of?
Merry Christmas! Recently we stumbled across a new Internet star known as Tito Lizzardo, an animated lizard singer who pals around with a sexy feline dancer named Catty Baby (aka Catty B). Virtual Humans (a site we also just discovered!) has this to say about them: “Tito is a lizard that likes to dress in his school jacket. Catty Baby is a cat that rocks her sporty looks every day. Their TikTok account is exploding with the couple’s dance moves next to the beach and the palm trees in Miami. Tito and Catty are a couple of artists doing remixes of famous Latin songs like ‘Hips Don’t Lie’ or ‘Hey DJ’. Their gang is completed with Juan Gato, Catty’s brother who is always wearing a Miami Heat shirt. All together they create amazing videos of their song remixes, targeting very young audiences with their cute, animalistic appeal.” Tito and crew first appeared in a series of short, at times rather risque dance videos on TikTok. Since then, they’ve released several much-more-family-friendly music videos on their YouTube channel. Who’s behind all this? We don’t know! But we’d love to meet them!
Okay, this one may not technically be a “furry game”. If the late Fred Patten were to start this review off, he may have asked something along the lines that if you as a player moves around the world as a cat with a robot companion augmenting their ability to interpret the society around them, is that game actually anthropomorphic? Perhaps it’s more in line with transhumanism, but in this case more transfelinism, where your feline character is augmented by their technological companion.
And like Adam Jensen of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, the cat you play certainly didn’t ask for this.
The story follows Sam, an extremely unlucky 18-year-old. After years in an orphanage and never being adopted, she moves into her first apartment. When she encounters a black cat, her luck suddenly changes, becoming good - and when it reverts to her previous bad luck, she follows the cat into the magical Land of Luck, the source of all luck in our world (both good and bad).
Most of the film revolves around Sam trying to regain luck - not for herself, but to help a younger girl at the orphanage - while a series of evasions and accidents escalate into circumstances that threaten the Land of Luck itself.
It's an ok film, with a really nice magical world, although the story has tons of holes if you think about it too much. Furry-wise, besides the cat, most of the characters are leprechauns. Here and there are some cartoony bunnies and pigs, plus a couple of other background creatures that you don't often see anthropomorphized (goats and root vegetables). And a large, pink, six-limbed dragoness, in charge of good luck. She's not in too many scenes, but she's definitely one of the highlights!
Interestingly, this film lacks a clear antagonist; most of the conflict is situational in nature. I wouldn't say this movie is a must-see, but it's fine to pass the time with, and I think it shows a lot of potential for what Skydance could make in the future, if they polish up their writing a bit.
(Spoilers and griping under this cut.)
"You couldn't make a Mel Brooks movie today. I saw Blazing Saddles yesterday."
-SR-71, "Politically Correct"
With all the delayed releases for movies in the last couple of years, Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank fits right in. Of course, it's been delayed a bit longer than most. It was originally supposed to come out in August of 2017. It's been juggled around distribution companies in the last five years, and somehow managed to avoid the straight-to-video route, or the more modern straight-to-streaming path that even Pixar couldn't avoid recently. It's managed to keep hope alive, and now it's finally hitting theaters, and with a plushy summer month release date, too.
Directed by the duo of theatrical feature first time directors Chris Bailey and Mark Koetsier along with veteran Rob Minkoff (with directing credits on The Lion King and Mr. Peabody and Sherman), the movie is set in a cartoon version of feudal Japan inhabited by anthropomorphic cats. When an evil local governor (voiced by Ricky Gervais) decides he wants to get rid of a small village, he finds out he is tasked with finding them a new samurai to help them fight off his own thugs. Thinking outside the box, he decides to send them a replacement samurai that will, by his very nature, offend the sensibilities of the townsfolk so much that he might be the last straw that finally destroys the town. He sends Hank (voiced by Michael Cera), a dog.
If this set up sounds familiar, it should. The movie is a funny animal take on the 1974 Mel Brooks Western spoof Blazing Saddles, but also for some reason set in Japan. Paws of Fury was originally even entitled Blazing Samurai. What the heck are you worried about? This is Edo Japan! You'll be able to sue him! Mel Brooks even shows up to voice the shogun, so he seems to be well aware of what they are doing and completely fine with it. Who says you can't make a Mel Brooks movie today?
He’s in L.A. County, we’re in the O.C., so of course we meet up at WonderCon this year — and made sure to pick up his comic book, Super Lucha Cats! Interestingly, we came across this in a local newspaper: “When vampires, demons, and all manner of things that go bump in the night threaten the town, who will be there to save it? The Super Lucha Cats will. Created by 33-year-old Bell Gardens native Javier Solorzano, Super Lucha Cats is a brand-new comic inspired by Latin folklore, a love of lucha libre, and a couple of feline friends. It follows the adventures of Coco, Pizza, Nopalito, and Fresa; four cats adopted off the street by a retired luchadora who – with the help of a magical lucha mask – raised and trained the four siblings to piledrive the forces of evil.” Check out the interview from our local NPR radio station too.
In late January 2022, the internet was flooded with news stories about a concerned parent in a school meeting in Michigan. However the news of the inaccuracy of the salacious rumor didn’t seem to reach one State Senator in Nebraska by the name of Bruce Bostelman of District 23. He instead took the State Senate floor and defecated it with the rumor he, like the woman before him, was appalled by.
I was just going to sit on this particular entry until a later time, since Maus is a novel I rather grew up with, having discovered it in college. Current events have ratcheted my schedule up to today. See the details in Sonious' article.
As such, Maus is also the latest example in a long line of important literature to see censorship such as To Kill a Mockingbird, 1984, or even The Lorax. Like any of those other examples, the motivation for this censorship grays in contrast to the social and cultural impact the work has.
The story re-imagines the memoirs of a Holocaust survivor, through the anthropomorphic template of Jewish mice suffering at the paws of SS cats. The involved plot revolves around main character Artie and his tight-knit neighborhood of survivors, as they reflect on the horrors of the past. Of course, the weight of these events is more than enough to color their relatively safe present. Much of the novel does indeed read like a Jewish Historical Society compendium, and does not skimp an iota on content of the dire situation they survived.