Manorexic’s Anime Sampler – Working!!

Posted on Nov 23 2011

It’s Thanksgiving Eve! Although most of you probably had a traditional mini-feast with friends and/or family, I’d like to dedicate this Sampler to anyone who said “Forget it, I’m eating out tonight.” Let’s dig in to an anime about one of the strangest restaurants in anime: Working!!, also known as Wagnaria!! to those watching it in America.

Unfortunately the show starts off in a very play-it-safe manner, with a little demo of the average waiting process at the Wagnaria restaurant. A snippet explanation of the current staff situation of the restaurant is awkwardly placed into a rather unnecessary conversation, and behind the scenes the assistant manager assigns ironically-named Poplar Taneshima, an elementary school looking high schooler, to find part-timers. Now I don’t know much about running a restaurant, but by the end of the show I counted somewhere between nine and eleven employees, which is a large staff compared to the restaurants like Wagnaria that I’ve been too.

Though the opening song doesn’t sit well with me, I have to give them kudos for going with a montage of Poplar trying to find recruits. Fortunately for Poplar the opening can only go on a minute and a half and her search is over with the finding of Takanashi Sota, even if he only accepted the offer because of some loli complex. The lethargic manager, Shirafuji Kyoko, gets her thirty seconds of screen time and promptly leaves.

Poplar shows Takanashi the basics of being an employee. During this we get short thirty second introductions for Sato Jun, the quite-but-kind chef; Soma Hiroomi, the more talkative chef; and Todoroki Yachiyo, a katana-wielding waitress. A rather nice system of getting the main cast introduced in the least painful way, I’d say.

Poplar comes to Takanashi for solace after someone calls her a middle schooler, which he responds to with a short joke. This prompts a practical staff meeting around him about him being a lolicon, and ends with him indirectly comparing Poplar to a daphnia. But because he hasn’t dug himself a deep enough hole, he manages to call the twenty-eight year old manager “pretty old.” That’s how everyone likes to spend their first day on the job, right? Being called a lolicon, insulting everyone’s favorite employee, and calling their boss old. Not to be take that comment sitting down, Shirafuji schedules him to seven day shifts for what seems to be two or three weeks.

This is a Daphnia, by the way

Apparently Shirafuji is just insane in general though, as we see from her bluntly insulting a customer and kicking then emptying the bank account of a punk who picked on Poplar and called her a “rotting [explicit].” But it’s okay, because her bank robbers will “do it so it won’t make the news,” a very reassuring fact. In order to get on her good side again, Takanashi takes back calling her old and calls her childish, which gets him only six days of work the next week.

While checking the scheduling list, Takanashi notices that in his almost month-straight of work he hasn’t met a certain Inami Mahiru. Before Poplar can explain the elusive employee, she’s called back to work. I’m not sure if time lapses are common in anime (leave a comment [hehe, people don’t comment…] if you know if they are or not,) so the “A few days later” stamp seems pretty lazy and clever at the same time. This new day seems like any other, save for the strange girl lurking around the back rooms. A cutaway to the schedule shows that today the mysterious Inami is on duty.

Everyone loves a good parallel action sequence. We get multiple cuts from Inami changing to Takanashi’s events leading up to their encounter. On his way he notices the scheduling of Inami for that day and is excited to get to meet her. She walks in and his excitement and greeting are cut short by a mach-speed punch to the face. Did they forget to mention Inami is an androphobe (afraid of men)? Of course everyone else expected this and carries on with their tasks while the sound of banging and screaming goes on, except Poplar and Yachiyo because they remembers that they forgot to tell the two employees about each other. Shirafuji also realizes she scheduled the two together on accident. Whoops.

Roll the credits But not before an internal recap monologue by Takanashi. Fortunately or unfortunately, I’m not sure, the ending matches the opening with a slideshow of screen caps retelling the episode’s plot over some catchy music.

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  • Kanashimi November 25, 2011 at 1:48 AM

    This show always looked really cute to me, and cosplayers always seem impressed when I figure out what they’re cosplaying as. Nice to see this sort of review however. 🙂

    • TheManorexic November 25, 2011 at 2:23 PM

      I wouldn’t think people cosplay often from this show, I’ll have to keep an eye out for them.

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