Cells at Work – Ep. 5

On that day, the cells received a grim reminder…

I never thought I’d ever write this but Full Disclosure: I am not allergic to anything so I cannot fully attest to the experience Cells at Work! has recently commented on. That said, this anime is still one big guilt trip. All the catastrophes this anime envisions really puts into perspective how much your cells deal with to keep you healthy. In fact, I still feel bad about the labor the platelets have to do on a daily basis. And if you thought the abrasion or the food poisoning was crazy, you’ll be in awe at what this episode dishes out. No one will be able to look at allergies the same way ever again.

Granted, Cells is at its core, an educational and humorous experience. That the cedar pollen are all visualized as giant yellow boohbahs (…look it up), for example, is pretty funny. They’re alien invaders like the germs are but making them look more innocent makes sense because they technically don’t cause illness. They just have the misfortune of entering a body where their presence would cause too much trouble. Don’t get me wrong, disaster still strikes and it needs to be contained but I kind of get why Red and White feel remorseful that the pollen must be slaughtered.

Where the anime elicits guilt (while still garnering laughter) is when it shows how the cells handle the situation. Everyone is off doing their own thing. Memory Cell tries to warn everyone of a prophesied catastrophe. B Cell spams his antibodies at the pollen. Mast Cell floods the area with histamines. Red delivers a pill in the form of a Terminator (again, it’s still funny). There is no coordination whatsoever. It makes sense the scenario and, again, I’m not allergic to anything but I just can’t help but feel guilty. These cells just can’t take a break with all the doomsday scenarios they deal with.

There’s a surprising truth that rings when White observes the insanity unfolding before him. No one handles the situation that well but is any specific person really at fault here? At the end of the day, the cells were just doing their assigned job. Even the Terminator is simply following his programming: to eliminate the allergens. Everyone is just trying to solve a problem and mistakes happen, just like with every new scenario people deal with as a community.

Obviously, I might be giving Cells at Work! too much credit here by attributing it to social commentary. Then again, are we not giving our own cells enough credit for their hard work?


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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4 thoughts on “Cells at Work – Ep. 5

  1. I think there was definitely some social commentary going on with this episode, as well as some comments about the impact medication has on our system. Fortunately, while that is there, this is still just a fun episode to watch that remembers it is meant to be entertainment and it delivers on that. However, almost no platelets this week.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ditto about the lack of Platelets. I just didn’t want to keep commenting on it to avoid sounding like a broken record. That said, I did create “Not Enough Platelets” as a joke tag a few weeks ago and I’ll keep using it until this show gives these characters back their screentime.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I love how characters that essentially were side characters in one episode and only briefly appeared in a second episode have ‘screentime’ but I totally agree with you. #NotEnoughPlatelets

        Liked by 1 person

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