Cells at Work! – Ep. 1 (First Impressions)

Where was this show in my high school biology class?

I’m not sure if Cells at Work! can sustain itself for a whole cour. I like the concept of turning human cells into a society of humans a lot (reminds me a bit of Osmosis Jones) but it does strike to me as something that could easily get old after an episode or two. Longevity aside though, this first episode proved to be 100% worth my time so points for that. It accomplished the one job every TV pilot has.

What won me over is just how the anime depicts human cells. They’re amusing by its own merits but when you consider what you know about cells, almost every portrayal makes a lot of sense. Red blood cells as deliverymen? Fitting. White blood cells as murderous policemen? Appropriately hilarious. Platelets as little children playing Bob the Builder? Those cells are smaller in size so it makes sense (also, OH MY GOD, THESE ARE THE MOST ADORABLE THINGS EVER!). Even the germs seem accurately represented in that they look like Dragon Ball-esque alien invaders. Simply put, the mastermind behind this story is a genius.Regardless of how well this show works in the long run, I’m curious as to how other cells are anthropomorphized in this setting.

Speaking of which, I really like how the world looks in Cells at Work! Everything looks like a busy and densely populated metropolis, a place where you’d easily get lost in. It’s fitting when you consider how busy and non-linear the inner workings of the human body is. In general, it’s a lot of fun to see how each body part looks is perceived in this anime. The area at the end of episode that is supposed to be the nose is a hilarious testament to the show’s creativity. As an aside, one really random detail that I dug was how the sky is colored white, as though to remind you that this anime is taking within someone’s body.

The only thing I wonder with Cells at Work‘s characterizations is how individualistic its actual characters will be. It appears that there’ll be one recognizable member of each cell type but since each type has a specific job and attribute to adhere to, I’m concerned if the distinction will only by character design. The one character that does assuage me is the main Red Blood Cell played by Kana Hanazawa. Unlike her co-workers, this cell flat out sucks at her job; constantly getting lost in the city and getting into life or death situations with germs. It’s maybe a little strange that she’s the only klutz among her team but it’s a deviation that works so I’ll go with it. Hopefully, the main White Blood Cell (Tomoaki Maeno) will be able to stand out from his bloodthirsty brethren. I’m fine if the Platelets are all the same though; they’re all amazing if you ask me.

Time will tell if Cells at Work will remain a joyous ride but it sold me on the first episode so I’ll give them credit for that. I’ll keep watching it for the time being.

OP: “Mission! Ken · Kou · Dai · Ichi” by the Cast of Cells at Work!

A silly OP we have here; I think it suits the show. I wonder if that Platelet will actually take up arms at one point.

ED: “CheerS” by Claris

This is absolutely adorable. I hope someone will make a GIF out of it soon.


Thanks for reading!

Cells at Work! is officially available on Crunchyroll.

For all of my Cells at Work! Episode Reviews, check out the show’s archive page!

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