Due to severe allergies, Junpei avoids cats like the plague. One day he accidentally damages a shrine dedicated to a cat deity, and becomes cursed by it. One part of the curse, is that he can now understand cats and talk to them. Something which turns out is annoying as hell. They explain he's now required to help out 100 cats, or he will become one.
Nyan Koi (meaning something like Meow Love) has a cute concept, so I was enthusiastic checking this one out, while hoping it wouldn't screw it up. I enjoyed it, but for different reasons than I would have guessed. This anime is fairly generic, so you'll have to accept that much, however I found it quite likable despite that.
The cat thing is often overshadowed by typical high school romance stuff, with most girls falling for Junpei in various degrees. Somehow Nyan Koi makes this work, because Junpei is a bit of a slacker and more concerned about his crush on a girl. This evolves into a full love triangle, and other romantic interests exist but aren't really considered. Junpei wants to get on with his life, but then there are always these damn cats interfering! It's a natural extension of his normally tenuous relationship with cats, making his personality consistent. And yes he has one (a personality), something you don't often get in a male lead in this kind of show.
In fact I liked nearly all the characters, including the cats. My favorite was the childhood friend / tomboy / big-boobs girl, but I think it wasn't so much her character I loved so as much the portrayal by her voice actress (Ryoko Shiraishi) bringing her personality to life. She is in some ways the third wheel in the love triangle, but thus far the anime hasn't made it cut and dried who Junpei is "destined to be with", which could make a good story. Anyway, all the humans are likable which says a lot considering similar anime usually get this wrong by lack of effort. New cats are always adding something to the mix too.
The day to day stories are okay, but nothing more. While this series isn't concluded, the last episode comes full circle with the cats helping Junpei in appreciation for everything he'd done for them. It's a cute way to wrap things up, so feels conclusive enough. The art style of Nyan Koi is tough to pin down. The designs generally look nice, but something about the way it's done makes their appearance somewhat crude. While inconsistent, it typically looks okay.
So I liked Nyan Koi, generic anime stuff that it is, but fun enough to make it worth the watch.
Akari: Wait until you're an adult before you wiretap or cyber-stalk.
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