Imagine a slice-of-life anime set in the universe of Zootopia, but for Anime fans and with much more adult-oriented content. That’s basically BEASTARS.
The show follows Legoshi, a gray wolf highschooler who’s basically struggling with carnivore puberty. Apparently in this universe, all animals struggle to deal with their inherent instincts, so much so that Rabbits tend to be overly sexual and carnivores tend to get all twitchy at the scent of blood.
While playing lookout for the epic rule-breaking drama club, who’s using the stage to rehearse late at night because they’re too good to rehearse in their dorms, Legoshi almost commits the ‘ultimate taboo’ by devouring another student. At the last second, however, his years of evolution and instinct are instantly canceled out when one of the drama students begins crying for help from the wolf who was supposed to be their lookout.
While rehearsing in the dark, the lead actor accidentally walked off the stage that he’s been performing on for 3 years and messed up his ankle–because if you’re going to sneak into an auditorium after hours to rehearse just days before the performance, why turn any of the lights on?
Legoshi eventually develops a crush on Haru, the school slut (and a rabbit, because stereotypes are a bitch), and that becomes the focal point of the story; occasionally throwing in some flavor about carnivores dealing with their instincts and a deer with an inferiority complex.
The show does a little bit here and there to deliver exposition on the way that the carnivores and herbivores live together in society and the struggles revolving around that, but then they also very quickly throw the weight of the ‘ultimate taboo’ out of the window by revealing that there’s a whole, socially accepted, black market where carnivores can go and buy real meat.
So ultimately, the devouring of other animals is as much of a taboo as banging your own step-mom. Yeah, Pornhub kinda blew the lid off that one, huh?
Honestly, I was avoiding this show at first because I assumed it was just a furry-pandering series with little thought put into it. Eventually, a friend of mine talked to me about it and I decided to give it a shot. Truth be told? I didn’t hate it, and some of the characters grew on me; Pandad and Bill just to name a couple.
Haru honestly had the most understandable backstory to her, too. In fact, I actually love the way the show explained her promiscuity because it didn’t allow her to be a slut for the sake of being one, but explained that her habits were driven by a deep, internal struggle that many attractive young women might go through.
The music in the show never really made an impact on me… in fact, upon writing this review, I can’t even seem to recall a point where the music played an noticeable role; even for mood setting. The animation style isn’t my favorite, but when the animators focused on the beauty of fur from time to time, it was actually super pretty!
I still think this was kind of pandering to the furry community for the sake of it, unfortunately. I’ve actually always been into furries deep down inside, but I’m actually rather picky about my furries and have never been a fan of fully-humanoid furries. I tend to prefer the ones who still keep their animalistic bone structures! I mean these furries are basically just hairy humans with animal heads. Bleh.
All in all, though, the show was pretty enjoyable, even if it doesn’t make it to my list of favorites, and I did really enjoy the love story between Haru and Legoshi. My biggest complaint, though, is the idea that a single panda/wolf duo can do what those two did in the end. That was just downright stupid to me. I think this story had potential, but it just wasn’t well thought out.