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File:Working with aoi 6348.jpg


Someone, one one! Someone else!

WORKING!! is a published Yonkoma by Karino Takatsu.

Popura Taneshima is a short girl who works at a family restaurant. One day her boss gives her the ultimatum to go out and find some more help, as no one wishes to apply for the job. After spending an entire day asking, she accidentally bumps into Souta Takanashi, who thinks she's a lost child, and proclaims herself to actually be 17, a year older than he is. Souta ends up taking the job and quickly learns about his new dysfunctional co-workers.

An anime adaptation aired in the spring of 2010. The series has been picked up by NIS America in their anime collection in an English sub-only format under the title Wagnaria!!, with polarizing reactions from the fans regarding to the title change.

A second season was announced, but not before an April Fools' prank making it look like a spinoff show called WORKING!, based on mangaka Karino Takatsu's web version of the manga with a different cast, was getting animated and released on VHS.

Not to be confused with Working, the '90s Work Com starring Fred Savage of Wonder Years fame.


Tropes in WORKING!! include:

  • Abuse Is Okay When It Is Female On Male: Double subverted. Inami's called out a bit for hitting men, but otherwise little effort is made on stopping her or helping her get over that. In fact, when Takanashi in the second season gets fed up and calls her out, HE is seen as the bad guy, and Aoi breaking a few plates gets punished much worse than Inami ever gets for breaking faces.
    • And now, thanks to a misunderstanding, Souta's younger sister has got it into her head that Souta actually likes that stuff.
      • As of episode 7 of season 2, he was able to clear it with Nazuna that he is not a masochist. This also helps him get out from his Heroic BSOD.
  • A-Cup Angst: Being the smallest woman at Wagnaria, Inami falls into this frequently (though not as much in the anime).
    • It certainly doesn't help that the 12-year old Nazuna is already bigger than her.
    • The anime doesn't seem to play it up until Takanashi, crossdressing is shown to be larger than her.
  • Adult Child: Izumi, probably.
    • Her dad is a better example.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Poor, poor Jun.
    • Yachiyo's feelings for Kyouko might also fall under this.
  • Aloof Big Brother: Jun
  • Alternate Character Reading: Episode 9 features Kotori, whose name is an Alternate Character Reading of Takanashi. To be more specific, Takanashi -> Kotoriasobi.
    • This refers to a Japanese saying - "There are no hawks (taka nashi) where little birds play (kotori asobi)".
  • Anti Role Model: All of Souta's older sisters.
  • Attractive Bent Gender: Takanashi, when he cross-dressed as Kotori, got hit on by some of the male customers.
  • Barehanded Blade Block: Otoo pulls one off against Yachiyo.
  • Big Eater: Kyouko
  • Bishie Sparkle: Souma-san has black and grey sparkles whenever he's happy. Considering who he is, and that his happiness means someone else's unhappiness, this makes sense.
    • Kotori has some the first time she shows up.
  • Bland-Name Product: Apparenty Wagnaria is based on Saizerya.
  • Blue with Shock: Satou gets a lot of this when dealing with Yachiyo, especially when she's being particularly clueless about his feelings. Episode 10 takes it to new levels, when she tries to serve him the way she does Kyouko.
  • Bottle Fairy: Souta's older sister, Takanashi Kozue, is practically the anime poster child for AA. It's quite hard to find her actually sober.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Satou complains when Bishie Sparkles appear around him.
  • Brilliant but Lazy: Apparently, Souma spends all that time and effort collecting blackmail on his co-workers so he doesn't have to actually do any of his own work.
    • With Jun and Inami, though, such tactics are hit and miss.
  • Butt Monkey: Aoi, to a degree. The girl never gets even a smidgen of sympathy--except from Souma, of all people.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Souta of all people. He lays into Inami's father over his method of parenting that resulted in Inami becoming violently androphobic. This could also count as a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming, but considering Souta may or may not be doing this for Inami, rather for all the abuse he's been forced to take as a result of Inami's fears.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: One source of tension is Jun's rather obvious crush on Yachiyo, which he absolutely refuses to admit (certainly not in front of Yachiyo herself). Of course, (considering she probably doesn't swing that way) he's permanently stuck in the "friend" zone, so he gets to hear all about how much Yachiyo loves Kyouko. At length. It's pretty much as sad as it sounds, yet still funny thanks to Schadenfreude.
  • The Cameo: The cellphone lady and her co-worker at the phone store Satou and Yachiyo visit in the second season are actually characters from CU no Oneesan, one of Karino Takatsu's older web comics (found here: [1]).
  • Christmas Cake: Gets played with for Kyouko, Kazue, Izumi, and Kozue.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Yachiyo towards Kyouko. Even if it's something so simple as giving Kyouko food, Yachiyo will get angry.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Aoi, although most of the cast has a rather strained relationship with reality.
  • Conspicuous CG: There doesn't even seem to be a reason beyond "because we could".
  • Cool Big Sis: Subverted with all of Souta's older sisters.
    • Let's see: one is an alcoholic who can't keep a job or a boyfriend (despite being quite attractive); one is a struggling romance writer who is pretty much incapable of taking care of herself; and one is a short-tempered and physically abusive law school student, who decided to become a lawyer (in part) to have bigger books to throw at Souta's head. Yeah, good role models, right there.
  • Credits Running Sequence: The ED has Souta, Sato and Soma running; Lampshaded in that at the end of the sequence they all stop to catch their breath.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Souta is a buff for them. Perhaps it runs in the family, as Popura provokes this from Souta's oldest sister Kazue, of all people, leading to a very close encounter.
    • Sometimes this is coupled with Attention Deficit... Ooh Shiny!
    • Kotori provokes a similar reaction from Popura, much to Souta's dismay. Episode 10 has Souma selling photos of Kotori-chan to Popura, who reacts much as Souta does around her.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Souta. Or maybe he's just insensitive. Or both.
  • Description Cut: When Souma asks Satou how to avoid Mahiru's daily dose of Megaton Punch.

 Satou: Take this for example: You're cleaning in a storage room and Inami shows up.

(Inami shows up in front of Souma. Souma goes Blue with Shock.)

  • Do-It-Yourself Theme Tune: Both Openings are sung by Popura, Inami and Yachiyo while the endings are sung by Souta, Jun, and Souma.
  • Does Not Like Men: Mahiru has such a deep seated fear of men that simply being near them results in Megaton Punches.
    • To further prove it's in her head, she has little problem when a man uses a feminine sentence structure - at first, anyways.
    • Or just look at when she first meets Otoo-san, she doesn't even care if Souta's a guy when there's another guy around, better the guy you know than the guy you don't...
    • Deconstructed, or at least discussed, when Souta asks her if she would hit young boys, the elderly, or crossdressing men. It manages to thoroughly confuse her, and she can't give a proper answer other than she'll "use her instincts."
  • Dojikko: Popura, Aoi.
  • Dysfunction Junction: A light-hearted version, certainly, but there aren't very many "normal" psyches among this bunch.
    • Well, we haven't taken a look into Maya Matsumoto's psyche yet.
      • Last ep makes it seem that she wants to be normal so much it comes off as weird to other characters, so the trope probably holds.
  • Ear Worm: The OP for the first season, SOMEONE ELSE, is rather catchy. The second season's OP, COOLISH WALK, continues this tradition.
    • SOMEONE one one SOMEONE one one SOMEONE one one SOMEONE ELSE...
      • Actually, the "one" is pronounced more like "wan", which is Japanese for "woof".
  • Easily Forgiven / Double Standard: In reality, beating up people on a regular basis would likely land you in jail.
    • Apparently you're forgetting Kyouko's juniors - leaving the cops out is just good sense.
  • Every Girl Is Cuter With Hair Decs: Inami and her various hair clips. Even Souta thinks so.
  • Evolving Credits: When Aoi Yamada joins the cast, the OP and ED are changed to include her. The same applies in season two for Haruna Otoo, Youhei and Mizuki Mashiba and Kirio Yamada.
  • Excited Show Title
  • Expy: So we got a cool, smoking cook whose blond hair constantly covers his left eye. Where did I see that before, hmmm....? Not to mention the All Love Is Unrequited angle.
  • Eyes Always Shut: Yachiyo and Otoo. Hiroomi also does this at times, but keeps his eyes mostly open (so he won't miss any of the interesting stuff happening in the restaurant).
    • In Yachiyo's case, her eyes open once in Episode 7
  • Face Doodling: Happens to Popura when Satou is upset, and to Yamada when she's being too ... Yamada.
  • First-Name Basis: Yachiyo to Kyouko. When Kyouko has to leave for business in Episode 10, she tries this with Satou-san. It doesn't end well.
  • Foreshadowing: The little lost girl from S2E05 can be seen with her mother right after the credits in S2E02.
  • For the Evulz: When Souma isn't trying to blackmail his co-workers into doing his work for him, he's usually trying to arrange embarrassing or irritating situations for the people around him... pretty much because he thinks it's funny.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: In the second opening, when Popura dashes past the camera as the title card shows up, one can see a tiny Yamada holding onto the end of Popura's ponytail.
  • Freudian Excuse: The reason for Souta's love of little things (and hatred for huge ones).
    • To elaborate: Despite being sixteen he's shorter than all of his older sisters, and his younger sister is almost as tall as he. All of his older sisters bully or abuse him in some way, and he suspects his younger sister will eventually turn out the same way.
  • Frying Pan of Doom: If both Jun and Souma are in the kitchen, and some of what Souma does happens to affect Jun in a bad way, this happens.
  • Genius Ditz: On occasion, Yamada demonstrates an extraordinary depth and variety of skills, despite spending most of the time making up for her clumsiness. It makes one wonder if she's actually as spacy as she seems, or if she's hiding a much greater intellect.
  • Girly Run: Yachiyo is susceptible to this, which is perhaps caused by her carrying a sword.
  • Girls Love Stuffed Animals: At one point, Satou buys Aoi a stuffed bear. She names it "Daisy" and treasures it immensely.
  • Headbutt Thermometer: Yachiyo just melts in Kyouko's arms when the latter does this to the former.
  • Hime Cut: Aoi.
  • Hot Chick with a Sword: Yachiyo, though her personality is nicer than normal(as long as Kyouko is not involved). Most of the time, the sword is an Unusually Uninteresting Sight.
  • Hot Mom: Mahiru's mother is very pretty, with her fetching long braid and all.
  • Hot Springs Episode: Episode 8, without the actual bathing in the hot springs scenes.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Popura and Souta... and virtually every other male character in the series. The only way you could avert this trope with her is to get some grade school boy to stand next to her. Inverted in that Souta is small compared to his sisters, including his younger sister (see below).
  • Huge Schoolgirl: Souta's youngest sister, Nazuna, (12 years old) is on her way to being this, and is already kind of this for her age group, being able to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with her brother and sisters despite being in grade school.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Mahiru fears men because she thinks they're violent and they might have a weapon. She says this while hiding behind Yachiyo.
    • Not to mention that almost ALL of the violence in the series is Inami hitting a guy, usually before he even finishes a sentence.
  • I Didn't Mean to Turn You On: Inami, regarding Souta. Less sexually implicit as it is romantically implicit - but it still gets the same reaction out of her.
  • I'm Taking Her Home with Me: Souta said this once about Popura going into a Corner of Woe.
    • Again when Souta finds a lost girl in the parking lot. Given Souta's minicon fetish, there are Unfortunate Implications that may impair your enjoyment of the scene.
  • Incest Subtext: Not explicitly stated, but it's more of a vague attraction played for laughs and... drama? Perhaps it's even a complex. Anyway, three of the Takanashi sisters do seem a bit too dependent or close to Souta. One grew up for the purpose of helping her older brother, one is an apparently always boyfriend-less, hopeless Bottle Fairy, and the last is a romance novelist who can't do anything by herself despite being 28.
    • While drunk and incoherent, the Bottle Fairy sometimes asks Souta if he wants to have sex with her. No inhibition indeed.
    • Izumi is incredibly possessive of Souta because he's so kind to her (read: she can't do anything without him). After hearing he has a girlfriend (supposedly Inami), she becomes even more depressed than usual and decides to clear her mind by going outside for fresh air. Alone. For someone like Izumi, that's an act of suicide. She even leaves a letter that sounds like a final farewell.
    • It's becoming increasingly clear that Nazuna would do ANYTHING to make her brother happy, no matter the personal troubles it causes. Taken just a little further, her devotion would cross into a unhealthy degree -- if its quietly not there already.
  • Incompatible Orientation: Jun is in love with Yachiyo, who is lesbian. Or at least, she is with regard to Kyouko. Kyouko herself seems to have no interest in guys or girls, preferring gluttony to lust.
  • Japanese Delinquents: Kyouko used to be one. The Mashiba twins, being Kyouko's henchmen back in high school, also count as reformed versions of these.
  • Keigo: Aoi uses very polite speech levels throughout.
  • Kewpie Doll Surprise: Popura does this a lot.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: Inami's brutal assault on the manipulative Souma feels less cruel.
  • Lampshaded Double Entendre: Happily subverted. In episode 11, Kozue forces Inami into Satou's room. She then hears them saying things like "Are you sure? It's my first time doing this..." Yamada is curious as to what they might be doing, and Kozue tells her they're "doing what guys and girls do behind closed doors."

  Yamada: "Playing card games?"

  • Lampshade Hanging: for a comedy series, it's rather good about this. The Fridge Logic example and There Are No Therapists example both qualify.
  • Last-Episode New Character: Maya Matsumoto.
    • She was seen throughout the show, including in the OP, but did not get a speaking role until the last episode.
    • This actually ends up being a good gag (despite missing out on using a potentially good character) and even some Fridge Brilliance. Maya is obsessed with being straight-laced and sane when stacked against her coworkers. The fact she only appears at the end to berate the rest of the staff on how weird they are shows how steadfast she is in her commitment to be "normal" (though it comes back to bite her because she's developed a normality complex). She shows up to work, does her job, doesn't get involved with her coworkers' eccentricity, and leaves without making much of a fuss. So we see her in the background and ignore her, which is exactly what she wants.
  • Likes Older Women: Yachiyo, a lesbian version. Though that may just be a Single-Target Sexuality for Kyouko.
  • Living Prop: Maya Matsumoto, who actually appears in the OP.
  • Lolicon: Despite denying it, Souta claims he is instead a minicon.
  • Loners Are Freaks: Maya doesn't like to socialize with her colleagues, which makes the others think she's a bit weird.
  • Love Triangle: Type 5, Jun -> Yachiyo -> Kyouko (-> food).
    • Also played with. Yamada sees Popura fawning over Souta and thinks one of these is developing between those two and Inami--it turns out that Popura is just admiring "Kotori" for being everything she wants to be.
  • Made of Iron: With sisters like his, it's no wonder Souta can withstand all of that stuff Inami does to him.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Souma. Jun's probably only the one who's immune to Souma's schemes. Nazuna's also showing hints of this.
    • Apparently Aoi is turning into Souma's kryptonite.
      • Inami was immune due to the fact she would give him a Megaton Punch just for being in range.
    • Nazuna also seems to enjoy being able to control the behavior of her older siblings.
    • Jun completely out-manipulates Souma in the last episode.
  • Marshmallow Hell: Popura at one time gets this treatment from Kazue.
  • Meganekko: Maya, Kazue.
  • My Name Is Not Durwood: Popura cannot call Takanashi properly by his name, instead calling him "Katanashi." Inami got confused with that until she found out that he only lets Popura call him that.
  • Mysterious Past: No one is quite sure where Aoi came from (though it's hinted that she ran away from home), no one is sure why she decided to run away and work at the restaurant, and no one knows where she learned how to plant a bug on someone's clothing.
  • No Sense of Direction: Otoo's wife went missing a long time ago, and hasn't found her way back. His trying to find her is one of the recurring gags in the series.
  • Oblivious to Love: While there is Yachiyo and her blindness to Satou's crush on her, Souta is just as bad in regard to Inami's crush on him. (Though, to be fair, her treatment of him is not helping her case.)
  • Older Than They Look: Popura is older than Souta. Aside from a sizable chest, you'd be hard pressed to tell.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: Episode 10 has Nazuna and Inami talking. Nazuna asks if Souta enjoys being punched, while Inami confesses to liking Souta. Except the question Inami answered wasn't what Nazuna asked, even if the answer is 'yes'. Poor Souta.
    • Episode 3 in the second season has Izumi asking her sisters questions about Inami and misinterpreting them as descriptions of Popura. The end result is Izumi mistakenly thinking Popura is an underage girl and her brother being a pedophile.
  • Only Sane Man: Souta thinks everyone working in that restaurant's somewhat strange in one way or another, although he himself isn't any different, being the minicon he is.
    • Seeing how Maya stays out of the craziness she might qualify--if only we'd know more about her.
      • We find out in the final episode that Maya indeed does think herself to be this. So much, in fact, that she tries too hard to be normal and inadvertently makes herself come off as weird.
  • Painting the Fourth Wall: Ep 10 has a recap of ep 9, which is done entirely in-character.
  • Precocious Crush: Yachiyo's feelings for Kyouko started from here.
  • Psycho Lesbian: Naturally, when in a series like this a girl has feelings for her female boss, she has to have some loose screws.
  • Replacement Goldfish: Satou Jun becomes one to Yachiyo when Kyouko had to leave for a business trip. It was an unpleasant few days for him.
  • Sempai-Kohai: Popura and Souta, respectively. And played for gags.
  • Shipper on Deck: Yamada, Popura, and Kozue appear to have jumped on the Inami/Souta bandwagon. Even Souma's Bishie Sparkles turn light at the thought of them hooking up.
    • Souma is shipping Satou and Yachiyo too. Mizuki's reluctantely on his team too.
  • Ship Tease: Despite protests from both, Souta and Inami have been teased as a potential pairing.
    • And despite the fact that Yachiyo will always go for Kyouko, we have some teasing for Yachiyo and Jun. The poor bastard can't even get let down properly.
  • Shout-Out: Inami is voiced by Fujita Saki, who is also the voice of Hatsune Miku. Consequently, Inami occasionally wears hairpins shaped like leeks.
  • Single-Target Sexuality: Yachiyo -> Kyouko.
    • Although at one time Yachiyo is seen fawning over Aoi as well, because Aoi looks a little like Kyouko.
  • Slice of Life
  • Smoking Is Cool: Satou
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Poplar versus Popura. She's supposed to be named after the tree for irony's sake.
  • Status Quo Is God: Mostly true, as in most Slice of Life comedies, though there are occasional minor shifts: Inami can now at least stand within a few feet of men without hitting them, Aoi Yamada has been added to the team, and Jun almost confessed to Yachiyo. However, for the most part things have remained relatively constant in the show.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: When Mizuki claims Souta would "devour" Yachiyo first chance he got, both Yachiyo and and Kyouko immediately imagine him eating her hair.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Inami when Souma talks to Souta about her hairpin.
  • The Klutz: Aoi Yamada cleans up plates from the floor on a regular basis.
  • The Other Darrin: Everyone was voiced by someone else on the drama CD.
  • The Runaway: Aoi, and probably from a rich family too.
  • Theme Naming: All of Souta's sisters have "zu" in the middle of their names. Kazue, Izumi, Kozue and Nazuna.
  • There Are No Therapists: Inami really should get one. Lampshaded by Souta, who wonders in one episode why Inami hasn't been committed.
    • Make sure the therapist is female, though.
  • Third Person Person: Aoi, Nazuna.
    • Yamada doesn't do this at first; it's just when it's becoming painfully clear she can't remember her own aliasname.
  • Throw the Book At Them: According to Souta, Kazue has a penchant for smacking him with her law books at any opportunity. She then demonstrates by hitting him in the forehead with the one she's currently holding.
    • Apparently that's why she became a lawyer.
  • Token Mini-Moe: Nazuna is a borderline case, seeing how she is about Souta's height already.
    • Popura fits the role better except for her chest.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Kyouko loves her parfaits, which is why Yachiyo is all too happy to bring them to her.
  • Troll: Despite being under the threat of Satou's frying pan and Inami's punch, Souma still is one.
    • Also Satou himself namely Popura.
  • Tsurime Eyes: Aoi, most notably.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Yachiyo walks around with a katana all the time, and most of the time people don't comment on it. That being said, she has scared away customers before because, well, they were afraid. Of course, they have nothing to worry about, so long as they don't insult, attack or hit on Kyouko.
  • Vague Age: Aoi is dodgy about giving up her age in the anime (when Souta tells her he's 16, she responds that she's 16 as well). She appears to have a 16-year-old brother who refers to her as his younger sister, so she might be the same age or younger.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Satou and Souma
  • Wholesome Crossdresser: Souta, much to the confusion of Inami.
    • Hilariously, he looks really good as a girl: he was adorable when he was a child, and he was good-looking enough when he cross-dressed to fool Inami's dad that some guys hit on him. Of course, that makes him like it even less.
    • Apparently, even Popura liked him as a crossdresser more than normally.
    • Apparently though, Mahiru's mother doesn't seem to be all that fooled by Souta's disguise.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: Nazuna
  • Work Com
  • X Meets Y: Azumanga Daioh meets Waiting.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Played with by the author herself, who wanted to intentionally have Yachiyo be a perfect woman apart from her love interest and her carrying a katana around.
  • Yandere: Woe to whoever tries to take Kyouko away from Yachiyo...
    • Thing is, nobody has: Yachiyo's bad enough you shouldn't even consider giving Kyouko a present where she can find out.
  • Zettai Ryouiki: Aoi.
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