"Catch the Heart" – Romantic shenanigans and slapstick in fast-paced 'Urusei Yatsura' episode
"Catch the Heart" (1989) is a 26-minute episode of "Urusei Yatsura" (Those Obnoxious Aliens), that was part of a series of made-for-video (OVA) episodes produced after the animated TV series (1981-86) had finished its run in Japan. It tells the story of magical candy hearts that, when eaten, cause the image of one's heart to appear over one's head, ripe for grabbing by someone who will then be the love object of the heart's owner. Alien hottie Lum gets hold of the candy and eats one and it soon becomes obvious to her lovestruck male classmates at school that the one who grabs the heart over Lum's head will win her unquestioning devotion. Which causes quite a stampede. Megane, the leader of a group of Lum's most ardent admirers, manages to get the heart, prompting Lum to write him a love letter, which puts him so beside himself that when she puckers up for a kiss, he collapses in shock. When rich boy Mendou gets the heart, Lum quickly knits him an ill-fitting pink sweater that he wears proudly for the rest of the episode as he leads his personal army in a mad, destructive campaign to retrieve the heart once he loses it. Ataru, Lum's perennially lecherous "husband," gets wind of all this and grabs the candies to distribute to all the girls he likes in order to take their hearts and solicit their romantic attentions. A jealous Lum relentlessly pursues him in the process and all manner of slapstick mischief and mayhem (and mismatched coupling) result.
It's an amusing episode, about on par with the better TV episodes and well worth catching by established fans of the series. It was released by AnimEigo as a subtitled VHS tape, labeled OVA 3, which also offered a second episode, "Goat and Cheese," a rather unwieldy shaggy dog story about the antics of a ghostly goat haunting Mendou's palatial estate on a stormy night.
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