TV & Movies

Twitter Was Not Prepared to Handle That 'Cats' Trailer But the Memes Are Helping Them Cope

The trailer for the film adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Broadway musical has left social media feeling all kinds of ways … and they’re still processing!

It was one of the most eagerly anticipated film adaptations, but now it looks like the first trailer for "Cats" may have had the opposite effect its creators intended … at least for some Twitter users.

Based on the classic Andrew Lloyd Webber musical of the same name, this live-action/CGI hybrid features an all-star cast led by Jennifer Hudson, Taylor Swift, Judy Dench, Ian McKellan, Rebel Wilson, Idris Elba, Jason Derulo and James Corden, so it has a good pedigree on the screen. And yet a first look at those stars in action appears to have genuinely freaked out those on social media … and not in a good way.

No one quite knew what to expect of the project, which had not released any footage prior to dropping its full trailer on an unsuspecting public Thursday afternoon at San Diego Comic-Con. Let’s just say no one was prepared for what was unleashed upon the world.

It may have only been two-and-a-half minutes but it may has well have been two-and-a-half lifetimes the way it seared into the brains of so many on social media, who took to Twitter in shock and disbelief at what they had just witnessed. Was it for real? Was it their nightmares come to life? And perhaps most importantly, what did they expect?

The life stage production of "Cats" featured actors in garish cat costumes and became a cultural phenomenon. But it’s perhaps the transformation of Hudson and Swift and the rest into human-cat hybrids that was most off-putting. Not since Sonic the Hedghehog bared his teeth has the internet been so shocked by the visuals of an anthropomorphic animal … or two dozen.

We can’t imagine the studio was thrilled to see their film trailer trending at the top of Twitter into the night on Thursday not because it was beloved, but because fans were trying to process their shock and, in some cases, horror at what they’d just seen and trying to figure out how they were supposed to sleep now.

And while some fans are still genuinely thrilled and excited about the upcoming project — and loved every moment of the trailer — more of them used Twitter to salve their trauma with memes and brilliantly subversive commentary. You can check out highlights from their healing and coping process below:

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