If ever were anything to portend the end of a phenomenon’s popularity within the cultural zeitgeist, it would be that thing serving as the basis of a primetime television comedy. The Big Bang Theory rode the wave of “nerd” popularity before crashing into directly into the rocks. Two and a Half Men was pretty much the death knell for the idea of men in general.
And so too has the primetime network comedy come for the coffee world, in particular the cat cafe, with the brand new Mayim Bialik vehicle Call Me Kat.
Set to premiere on Fox on Sunday, January 3rd, 2021, Call Me Kat finds Bialik playing the titular role, a 39-year-old single woman “who struggles every day against society and her mother”—played by the always delightful Swoosie Kurtz—”to prove that you cannot have everything you want yet still be happy.” In an attempt to make her own path in the world, Kat does what any still-technically-in-their-30s free spirit would do: spend all the money her parents saved up for her wedding and open a cat cafe.
The show is based on a 2009 BBC sitcom titled Miranda, whereby a socially awkward woman tried to navigate the world—and the constant disappointment of her mother—to run a joke shop. But since Gadzooks hasn’t really been popular since the demise of late-90s mall culture, Call Me Kat gets a bit of a facelift with the cat cafe, which hasn’t really been cool since like, 2014 maybe?
The real question is: was the cat cafe ever really cool? Cat adoption is, for the record, very cool (especially if it happens on a nice Amsterdam houseboat) and without cat cafes there would likely be no sheep cafe, which I have been to and was definitely cool. But the cat cafes I have visited in my limited experience remind me of going over to my friend’s house as a kid, who had a neighbor that raised rabbits—hundred and hundreds of rabbits—and it made the entire block smell like rabbits. It wasn’t pleasant.
But what do I know? I’m more of a dog person anyway, one who probably wouldn’t go to a dog cafe to boot. For now you can check out the trailer for Call Me Kat.