Working!! is back!
It has been one of my favorite comedy animes and I was sad to see it end after three fulfilling seasons. You could imagine my joy and elation when I saw a fourth season announced and you could also imagine my apprehension when I saw that there was going to be an “all new” cast. I put all new in quotations for a reason that I will get to in a minute, but for now, it’s time to take a look at the first episode of the fourth season of Working!!, which is titled as WWW.Working!!
First Episode Impressions
We are taken back to the restaurant Wagnaria and introduced to some new characters. I made the quotations in my introduction because while this cast is all new to us anime viewers, it is not new to those who have followed the four panel comics that the anime is based off of. In fact, these characters were the originals of the series. Despite this, we open up the first episode with a subtle passing of the torch. We see the main character of the previous three seasons, Takanashi (or Katanashi if you refer to him in Tanashima speak) walking past our new main character Daisuke Higashida.
Higashida goes to Wagnaria and has an interview to work there, but not because he wants to, but rather he has to. His father, who loves to crack jokes, makes a very light-hearted approach to him losing his job and, therefore, cutting off Higashida’s allowance. So now he has to work for himself. Just like how Takanashi discovered the uniqueness of his co-workers, Higashida does the same.
So the first episode mainly serves as your typical character introduction episode as you get to meet and experience all of their personalities. The second episode (which I have watched) goes back to the typical Working!! formula of small story after small story being told one after the other, yet stringing all of them together. That’s typical of most four panel comic anime adaptations, but that formula has worked in Working!! and continues to do so with this new season.
Some of the characters are being called cookie cutters of the previous cast, but since this cast is the original, I would say that these are, more or less, earlier versions of some of the cast of the first three seasons. Let’s take Hana Miyakoshi for example. She’s the head waitress and her personality is a little rough around the edges. She likes to threaten her manager with physical abuse and because as such, a lot of people are comparing her to Inami from the first three seasons despite the fact that Miyakoshi does not have androphobia. However, her aggressive behavior could be seen as a possible building block for what would later become the Inami character. Their personalities are completely different so that whole punching the manager thing is really the only similarity.
Shiho Kamakura is the billion dollar princess who doesn’t need a job, but is working there because Yuuta Shindou is. Yuuta turned down Shiho when they were kids and his father is in pretty deep debt to Shiho’s father as well. Shiho loves teasing Yuuta with money, but on the flipside, Yuuta is used to being poor. In fact, he’s working three jobs and eats blades of grass for nourishment.
Sayuri Muranushi is an odd waitress who, apparently, can see the spirit of an old man who she continuously serves on a daily basis. Kisaki Kondou is a young mother who is lazy and will find any excuse not to work and Mashiro Adachi is the head cool and the, seemingly (for now), only normal one of the bunch. The cast is very eccentric as you would expect and while the new characters will take some getting used to, this promises to be another enjoyable season.
OP & ED Impressions
Just like with the previous installments of Working!!, the opening and ending songs are performed by the voice actors and actresses and both of them have that upbeat electronica flavor to them mixed with hilarious animation. If you’ve seen a Working opening, you know exactly what to expect out of this. Both songs, “Eyecatch! Too Much!” and “Muchuuryoku Fever” are catchy songs in their own right, but they just don’t have that addictive flavor that the opening and endings of seasons one and two had. While they fit the atmosphere of the show, I would tend to skip the full versions of these.
Of course, if this style of music is right up your alley then dive right in, but this is another one of those kind of songs that sounds like it comes out of a random anime song generator.
YES – It’s Working!!. What else needs to be said? The series has pumped out some amazing comedy and in the two episodes I’ve watched, it looks to continue the laughs. The fact that this is a whole new cast means you do NOT have to watch the first three seasons to understand what is going on in this show. The only thing that would fly over your head is the opening scene with Takanashi passing Higashida on the street. If you end up liking this season and haven’t seen the first three, then this could be a great entry point for new viewers for this series.