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Hataraki Man (TV).




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marie-antoinette



Joined: 18 Sep 2005
Posts: 4136
Location: Ottawa, Canada
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:44 pm Reply with quote
Is anyone else watching this series? I just got started on it, I follow a site called Memento (which, amusingly enough, I started reading for their NANA reviews, which they've recently dropped) and it had a preview for the series and it sounded really interesting.

It's a very different anime than others that I've seen mainly because the characters themselves are quite a bit different, mainly they are older: working people rather than high schoolers or college students of any sort.

The series so far is a bit more slice-of-life than I really usually go for, but it's interesting enough. It also helps that it focuses on the publishing industry, which is what I plan on doing after graduating from university, though I want to be in books rather than magazines.
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daxomni



Joined: 08 Nov 2005
Posts: 2650
Location: Somewhere else.
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2006 10:56 pm Reply with quote


Sounds interesting. From the ANN image it does look like two college kids, a high school girl, a fat man and a woman. But I'll take your word for it that it's about adults out in the real world. I have too many series on my plate after the Geneon sale, but I'll certainly try to keep this series in mind. Looks like it's fansubs you're talking about? Oh well, guess I'll be waiting a while.
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blind_assassin



Joined: 07 Aug 2006
Posts: 755
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2006 11:16 pm Reply with quote
I watched the first episode and it has appealed to me so far. It'll make a nice counter-balance to all the action/thriller shows I picked up this new season.

Only thing that threw me about the show was the concept of the "man switch". I know that its metaphorical for the most part (rather than the "glass of God" that kinda makes me think I won't like Bartender) but it's still kinda odd.

And yeah, the people in that picture range from about 20 to slightly under 30 so they pass for college or just out of college age group.
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d.yaro



Joined: 08 Feb 2006
Posts: 528
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 12:10 am Reply with quote
I've watched the first episode also... I realize the source material was a manga but in a small way I do wonder why it wasn't made as a "dorama" as opposed to the anime it ended up as. Reminds me of where "Oishinbo" ended up on television as an anime (and "Natsuko no Saké" which went from manga to live-action TV series). Going back to Hatarakiman, I can't say I can think of an actress who could pull off the role of Matsukata Hiroko or would want it (nb: on account of having had similar roles in other series).

All in all I liked the show. For me it's a portrayal of the world of the Japanese office which I find a touch familiar and foreign simultaneously. The show seems to be doing a decent job of presenting in an interesting fashion the problems and demands facing women who have started moving up the ladder in the Japanese corporate hierarchy. Doubt there'll ever be an R1 release of this thing though. Couldn't imagine the typical anime fan being interested in this show.

Oh yeah, liked the OP/ED tunes too.
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selenta
Moderator


Joined: 19 Apr 2006
Posts: 1774
Location: Seattle, WA
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 3:20 am Reply with quote
I'm feeling lazy, so I'll quote myself:

Quote:
Its not unwatchable, and there were a lot of things this show did right. However, the rather hoaky and silly 'hataraki man mode' was rather... well... stupid. It's one thing if she changes her attitude to obsessive work mode, it's quite another to actually have a transformation sequence.


I liked several things about this show... but there are many others that do them better that are coming out now, and comparing this to Nana is like comparing Teletubbies to Band of Brothers. There's just too many shows to watch them all, and believe me, I try.
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abunai
Encyclopedia Editor


Joined: 05 Mar 2004
Posts: 5463
Location: 露命
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 5:28 am Reply with quote
selenta wrote:
Its not unwatchable, and there were a lot of things this show did right. However, the rather hoaky and silly 'hataraki man mode' was rather... well... stupid. It's one thing if she changes her attitude to obsessive work mode, it's quite another to actually have a transformation sequence.

What struck me most about the "hataraki man" sequences and the whole "man switch...ON" thing was that it was made quite clear that she was considered incapable of carrying out these intense work activities, in this obsessive way, without becoming (at least vicariously) male. She wasn't considered capable of carrying out such activities as a woman. This applied not only to the attitudes of those around her, but even to her own viewpoint, hence the "man switch...ON" thing.

If anyone mentions this series as a confidence-builder for Japanese women in the workplace, I'll laugh in their face. The message isn't "you can do it just as well as a male", it's "you can do it, but only if you can become a carbon copy of a male". There's no female empowerment involved, it's all psychological crossdressing.

Having said that, it's an entertaining enough anime to watch, and I shan't fail to catch the rest of the series.

- abunai
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marie-antoinette



Joined: 18 Sep 2005
Posts: 4136
Location: Ottawa, Canada
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 5:59 am Reply with quote
Yeah, I agree that the man switch is a put off-putting and it reminds me of magical girl anime actually, but in a bad way (not to say that I don't love magical girl, I do...but this isn't the place for it). I'm hoping that later episodes don't have that particular device used (I hear from people who've read the manga that the later focus is on Hiroko and her love life, or lack thereof).

The main appeal for me still is that it's taking a look at something I've never seen anime do before, at least not in this way.
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Reno-chan



Joined: 23 Jun 2006
Posts: 67
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 2:26 pm Reply with quote
abunai wrote:
What struck me most about the "hataraki man" sequences and the whole "man switch...ON" thing was that it was made quite clear that she was considered incapable of carrying out these intense work activities, in this obsessive way, without becoming (at least vicariously) male. She wasn't considered capable of carrying out such activities as a woman. This applied not only to the attitudes of those around her, but even to her own viewpoint, hence the "man switch...ON" thing.

If anyone mentions this series as a confidence-builder for Japanese women in the workplace, I'll laugh in their face. The message isn't "you can do it just as well as a male", it's "you can do it, but only if you can become a carbon copy of a male". There's no female empowerment involved, it's all psychological crossdressing.
- abunai


This is exactly what bothered me about the show. I suppose that I shouldn't have expected it to be empowering females considering the name, but the whole "triples her testosterone...she's just like a man" thing didn't really appeal to me. I'm not a militant feminist or anything, but this rubbed me the wrong way. I'm sure I'd continue watching it if I were more into the office drama genre, but I just watched it since I'm sampling the first episode of anything that doesn't look like it's shoujo or moe.
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TcDohl



Joined: 25 Oct 2005
Posts: 82
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 3:51 pm Reply with quote
I rather like the show, and carries the flag of the Noitamina block quite well. The animation quality is mid-range, and the character designs for the supporting characters are somewhat forgettable. The opening song is quite catchy, like PUFFY Ami Yumi's other theme songs (TEEN TITANS!), and good on the producers to get them.

I like the story and plot, though one thing that raised my eyebrow is that while the main character Hiroko is older and harder working than everyone in the office, there are younger and less dedicated men that are above her in seniority. The fact that she "has to turn into a man" just in order to do the work that is required of her all by herself while the men go home and not worry makes me wonder about the state of feminism in Japan. I know there is systematic sexism that is prevalent in Japan, but I haven't gotten the sense that the state of gender relations in Japanese society has improved since the 1990s. Women still have a very low glass ceiling in the workplace and in government.

So, enough of me ranting, what do you think of the state of gender relations in Japanese society?
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Alestal



Joined: 22 Apr 2005
Posts: 520
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2009 12:09 am Reply with quote
Did anybody else actually finish this show? Because I thought the show was rather good. It was extremely well paced, with interesting storylines, and a great lead.
I really liked the episode with the spoiler[massage therapist], for some reason it's one of my favorite anime episodes.
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bravetailor



Joined: 30 May 2009
Posts: 817
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2009 12:54 pm Reply with quote
I thought it was a decent watch. My gripe with it was that it kinda lacked any sustained source of tension, and so some of the episodes were just way too mellow for its own good. It's the type of show that might make you smile at times, but not laugh. The drama never rises above 4, and the characters are more quirky than well-developed.
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Sentire
Village ElderVillage Elder


Joined: 21 Apr 2008
Posts: 933
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2009 1:20 pm Reply with quote
Alestal wrote:
Did anybody else actually finish this show? Because I thought the show was rather good. It was extremely well paced, with interesting storylines, and a great lead.
I really liked the episode with the spoiler[massage therapist], for some reason it's one of my favorite anime episodes.

I am a massage therapist, so yeah... I'm a bit partial to that episode. Smile For an anime that doesn't fit the norm of the majority that is out there, I thought it did a fine job. Yes, the "Male On Switch" thing is a bit disconcerting, but it was refreshing to see a series about a career woman. I agree that there wasn't a sense of urgency on my part to see the next episode, more along the lines of being curious. It's one of those shows that seems to be so even keeled on it's pacing throughout, but yet still tells a decent story. The lack of high level drama and tension kind of remind me of the series "Bartender". Again, another series that is focused a bit more on older characters and their trials, and also seems to lack "intensity".

In the end, Hataraki Man's message did get translated though... as long as it holds your curiosity enough to continue to the next episode.
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mbanu



Joined: 11 Jan 2010
Posts: 124
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2016 1:58 am Reply with quote
Although this show seems to have fallen through the cracks in the U.S., I noticed that there is now a legal stream in the UK through Viewster: https://www.viewster.com/serie/1290-19252-001/the-female-hataraki-man/

I hope that Discotek or Crunchyroll considers giving it a go in the U.S. -- I'd put it up there with Bartender for complex adult slice-of-life storytelling.
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