Working!! focuses on the staff at the Wagnaria restaurant in Hokkaido, a standard Japanese style family restaurant serving counter meals, coffee and dessert. The main protagonist Takanashi Sota is hired in a desperate hurry by his high school senior the diminutive Tamunashi Popura who supervises the part time staff at Wagnaria.
Like all good comedy anime most of the characters are ridiculous hyperbole and one wonders how the business manages at all. An apathetic restaurant Manager is more interested in eating parfaits than selling them and the various staff are either mysterious would be gangsters, violent sword carrying obsessives or anxiety ridden androphobes. The only seemingly normal people at the cafe are Sota and Popura who share a sweet relationship sometimes romantic sometimes sisterly.
The Takanashi family also appear frequently showing the cooing matriarchy surrounding the main character. Takanashi is often long suffering and frequently helps his party going sister to function despite her willingness to repay him only in embarrassment. The family of another server Inari Mahiru also frequently appear mostly owing to an attempt by Takanashi to help her over come her extreme phobias.
Food analysis & recipes
Though the primary focus of the comics is on the relationships and comedy of the staff at the restaurant frequent comments are made on every day food business realities like hiring of part time staff, scheduling of front of house, the relationship between chefs and servers. In this way we get to see some of the realities of life as a restaurant owner. Instruction is given to new staff on how to greet and treat customers, how to plate and prepare desserts and what ingredients are lacking in the kitchen. For comedy effect knives are often shown in great detail. No recipes are included.
- Comics are in traditional 4 panel style
- Detailed water colour comics are mixed with simplistic comedy styles
- Primary content is on the staff and setting of the restaurant, little focus is given to the food itself
- Some lewd content – teenager appropriate
- Anime TV Serial – Working!! (Alternative English title – Wagnaria) 26 episodes (more in production)
- Radio Drama – 3 Audio CDs