I wonder where’s the make-believe cat in the Imaginary Cat. Oh well, maybe it may strut in later.
- Yoo Seung-ho (previously from Arang and the Magistrate) as Hyun Jong-hyun. Struggling webtoon artist with a rather stubborn streak. He keeps a pet cat, Bok-gil, who is privy to all his secrets.
- Biteuli and Han Ye-ri (voiceover) as Bok-gil. The ginger Scottish fold (?) who is Jong-hyun’s pet.
- Cho Hye-jung as Oh Na-woo. The girl who visited the bookstore where Jong-hyun’s working part time. He learns later that she goes around the neighbourhood feeding stray cats.
Full recaps, Dramabeans.
Nothing much really happens in Cat‘s debut. We are introduced to Jong-hyun, who is a struggling webtoon artist. He thought he has finally made it when his latest work is accepted by supervisor, Dokgo-soon, who works in a large agency that helps in debuting webtoon artists.
However, that work offer was later rescinded in the evening, and he comes home drunk and disappointed. Next morning isn’t exactly nice to him either, as he is told off by his Team Leader Ma at the bookstore to go after Na-woo, whose bag contains a book a shoplifter has slipped in.
Jong-hyun loses Na-woo in the streets, but bump into her again the next day when he sees her feeding the neighbourhood stray cats. He stops a neighbour from harassing Na-woo, but also can’t help tell her off for her behaviour. Cos Na-woo has been irregularly feeding the cats, leading them to become dependent on humans for survival.
Na-woo takes Jong-hyun’s scolding to heart, and resolves to feed the cats nightly rain or shine. She bumps into Jong-hyun again when she passes by the bookstore and Jong-hyun, after giving chase, accidentally rips off a cat bell from her bag. Na-woo is angry at Jong-hyun for accusing her (again) for being a shoplifter.
Jong-hyun later finds time to apologise to Na-woo when he spots her feeding the strays on her nightly round. And…sparks fly.
As I said, in terms of narrative, nothing very much happens in the debut. (btw, Cat is only a mini-drama, with 8eps) Even if you aren’t a cat lover, Yoo Seung-ho‘s rapport with the ginger kitty sizzles onscreen. (he professes to be a cat lover himself)
Cat also does it part in educating civic mindedness to its viewers — feeding strays may seem “kind” and “generous”…but there’s a catch to it. The animals become overly dependent on the feeder for their survival. And they may end up becoming poor scavengers or simply starve to death if their feeders are inconsistent in their rounds.
While most of Cat is focused on Jong-hyun and his interaction with Bok-gil, there’s no denying the romance angle budding between Na-woo and Jong-hyun. (and thank goodness both are cat lovers) Surprisingly, there’s also a mini mystery in Cat. Na-woo carries a cat bell around with her, cos it belongs to her cat Haru. Haru went missing one day, and didn’t come home.
Somehow, something tells me that Bok-gil may be Haru. (in that case, is Haru the “Imaginary” cat?) Whatever the case, it is likely that Bok-gil will play the matchmaker between the two prospective lovebirds.