Posted by psgels on 11 June 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews


Hataraki Man joins Omoide Poro Poro on the very short list of anime with a female main character who’s older than 25. It’s another series to have aired in the famed Noitamina-timeslot. It’s an anime about a workaholic. I originally dropped this series because I didn’t think that such a concept wouldn’t be worth exploring. So I was wrong.

Hataraki Man is a series that’s always critical of itself and its characters. Throughout only eleven episodes, it shows how the female lead (Hiroko) and her colleagues deal with their jobs, how they manage their stress, why they work the way they do and what goes on inside their minds. Every episode focuses at a different side-character, along with Hiroko. What we have here is a well-written series with characters you can connect to. Some episodes also refer to events that happened in past episodes, creating a series that feels whole, instead of a bunch of random episodes.

It’s almost a shame when the final three episode take the focus more away from the side characters, onto Hiroko. Don’t get me wrong: it’s here where the series manages to deliver some powerful climaxes, but somehow it feels a bit out of place in this series. Because of the extra attention to Hiroko, several side-characters end up left behind without development, even though they had enough potential to be put under the magnifying glass. The final three episodes also try to stuff a bit too much bad luck for Hiroko in too little time, and the result feels sort-of soap-opera like.

Nevertheless, we’ve got ourselves a very fine example of Noitamina here. It’s got energy, a good rocky soundtrack, OP and ED, the setting is very original for an anime, and I feel like anyone who’s dealing with stress. Although the animators do need to pay attention to their romanji a bit. ^^;

11 Responses

  1. Wind says:

    Blablabla, Honey and Clover, you know the refrain. :)

  2. bioeng says:

    I really enjoyed this series, though I wish it was the usual 13 episode length.

  3. Archer says:

    i could not find many things that i like in this anime so that i continue watching so i can’t say much about it…..

    psg holds the best for last …… but everyone here is saying that Honey and Clover is so good(i think the same) but after so many praises he might not like it or expect something different and we will get a harsh review,being said over and over again that a anime is great the person might watch it to get over it and because of that he might be disappointed even if the anime is very good but he cannot enjoy it at that moment but in the end i don’t think psg is that type of person but who knows :D

  4. ik says:

    for such an ordinary subject matter of “working life”, it’s actually an unique theme for anime. I really liked this series.

  5. AG says:

    I only got into this because my anime club was showing it, but it was worth it in the end! The fact that it was made by Hideaki Anno’s wife made it that bit sweeter ;)

    What’s with all the noise about Honey and Clover? Let the guy get to it when he does!

  6. Marmosette says:

    Ha! I told you it was good. Considering that slice of life is a fairly large genre it’s surprising how few actually occur in a workplace.

    Although I feel guilty doing so, I do want a H&C review because I think part 2 ruined the good thing of part 1.

  7. issa-sa says:

    Wooo Hataraki Man! (I’m sure psgels is tired of reading HnC in all his comments… crap I’ve fallen in the trap!) Though Hataraki Man was a pleasant watch at the time, its short length didn’t give it much of a chance to leave a proper impact, but good stuff nontheless :)

  8. bioeng says:

    What’s the point in reviewing an anime everyone thinks is a keeper? (H&C) Go for the obscure, psgels!

  9. Ten says:

    Ooh, this reminds me to finish up this series.

    And double hee to the romanji bit.

  10. Vera says:

    lmao at the romanji! XD

    But Hataraki Man is definitely one of my all time favorites. I’ve seen it last year before I started working and it was such a great boost. Now I’m far from being a workaholic, but it’s great to see people so dedicated to their work.

    And the cast is all super brilliant. It’s definitely a step up from teenage shoujo angst fest. :P

  11. Joline says:

    I love this anime. I was rewatching it recently, so it was a pleasant surprise when I saw you reviewing it. What I like so much is how relatable the characters are. And the show is not boring, like many slice-of-life series, since it focuses on the side characters. I admit I have a bit of Hataraki Man in me, which is probably why I like it so much.

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  • Masky
    (Sunday, Aug 2. 2015 02:09 PM)
    Geez, people really make odd excuses when defending stuff they like ._.
    …I feel like thats probably hypocritical comment coming from me since I’ve probably done that too, but I think I usually go with attitude of “Hey, you’d probably not like it anyway, but I think you are wrong about that thing” xD
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:47 PM)
    @Aidan: I would recommend downloading it rather than browser-playing it as my browser kept crashing when I tried to.
    Its quite short but it gives a great teaser and introduction to the game, that gets me excited for it.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:45 PM)
    @Aidan: Mangagamer have released the demo for kara no shoujo 2, they’ve also confirmed a release for Autumn. Its probably better to call this demo more of a prologue/compliment to the game with content exclusive to it.
    Demo/prologue here: http://mangagamer.org/kns2/
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 02:14 PM)
    @invicableGod, Yep that comment was spam. Should have got rid of it first time I saw it.
  • Wicked
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:10 AM)
    well, this place changed a lot. Gotta say, I’m not a fan of how they adapted GATE into an anime. It feels too decompressed. Manga did a better job at keeping the tension taut
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:08 AM)
    Also I am not the blog, I’m just a poster… I really hope you have enough sense to tell the difference…
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:07 AM)
    @Emo: you’re saying all that like that doesn’t fit your description to a T. Kinda sad actually…
    Well I guess now at least I gave you one more thing to get angry about so your day seems just a bit more active than your last.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:03 AM)
    I don’t think people are really expected to read it from the start anymore. I mean that’s probably why it stays popular in Japan considering people would have to be in their 20s at least to keep up from the start without reading hundreds of chapters just to keep up.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:00 AM)
    Well admittly comics don’t seem to be that easy to follow (don’t actually read comics despite liking a lot of DC and marvel media), but anyway it’s not like the other long-running shounens in terms of continuity and more like the long-running comedies like say Kochikoma.
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 12:56 AM)
    If you don’t like it, it’s cool.
    If you don’t feel like watching a thing that still airs weekly that’s also cool.
    If you leave it because it’s long or far from ending, you’re really missing out for little reason. One Piece is like western comics, the characters and setting has been around for years but each saga comes as a standalone story and for the most part is directed at both veterans and newcomers.

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