• Titles: Servant x Service
  • Genre: Workplace, sticom, romance, Slice of Work
  • Episodes: 13
  • Studio: A-1 Pictures

Lucy…excuse me, I mean Lucy Kimiko Akie Airi Shiori Rinne Yoshiho Ayano Tomika Chitose Sanae Mikiko Ichika, just got her first job. Ad she’s been waiting for this more or less her whole life. Lucy has now passed the civil servant exam so she can infiltrate her local branch and find the irresponsible employee who allowed her parents to give her such a ridiculous name! Of course, she also has to do her job well. I mean she can’t slack off and turn into another irresponsible civil servant. And she might as well get along with her co-workers. They may be a bit special but they’re all pretty nice people when you get down to it. Oh, and she probably should at least try to grow up a little and get used to things like drinking parties and dates. But when all that’s done, she’ll get her revenge!

I go on these little rituals. I watch a couple of romance shows that I like and decide I have finally gotten mature enough to appreciate the genre and put a whole bunch of romance titles on my list and then suffer. When I added Servant x Service (almost entirely based on those key visuals you see up there) I figured I could finally partake in the time old-tradition of the three-episode rule and just drop it if I don’t like it. I clearly don’t know how to do the three-episode rule.

on it!

Production

I really like the designs in Servant x Service. Like I said, I pretty much picked up the show because I thought the key visuals were cute. And I continued to like the designs throughout the series. Especially Lucy. She has a very cute face and I really liked her eye shape. I could have used a bit less emphasis on her body.

Servant x Service is one of those anime series that is competently made. It’s not too flashy, I might forget it in a week or two but I never noticed any particular flaws in the production while watching it either. The character designs are also all pretty different, except for the two main guys and it took me a while to learn how to differentiate them. That variety was fun to watch.

Otherwise, I don’t have much to say about the technical aspects. Good but mundane. How fitting for a sitcom about civil servants.

exactly!

Story & Characters

I think my last sentence sort of encompasses the core of what Servant x Service is. It’s a sitcom about civil servants. In every episode, a bunch of little things happen, mostly at the office which is a basic, uninteresting governmental building. Everyone is an eccentric version of what you would expect out of an average workplace. They are all a little exaggerated for effect but not impossible. These are people you could meet.

Well except for the branch manager who is, from what I gathered, an older man who suffers from extreme shyness. As a result, he comes to work in the guise of a remote-controlled small pink bunny robot and is very outgoing. He is the only surreal element in the series and I have to say, I found him to be hit or miss. It seemed like an unnecessary addition and some f his plots were pretty boring.

sorry…

For the rest, you could think of Servant x Service a lot like an anime The Office. The first season of The Office. A lot of observational humour, a couple of jabs at the job itself and at work culture in general, and a bunch of romantic subplots that become increasingly important as the series evolves. It never gets as extreme as the Office and there’s no Micheal Scott to really push the comedy but the feel and humour are similar. Or they were to me.

So now that you have a general idea about what Servant x Service is, let me tell you about my personal experience with it. First I should mention that out of all the types of comedy, situational comedy is probably one of my least favourites. I don’t dislike it by any means. It’s just that my mileage tends to really vary with sitcoms. Some I love, others bore me to tears.

I went into Servant x Service knowing next to nothing about the series. The tags said it was a Slice of Life, Romance, Comedy but in anime that can mean a whole lot of things. So I wasn’t expecting anything. I thought the first episode was great. I really liked Lucy’s revenge plot set-up. I thought the characters were likeable enough and had enough distinct personality to be developed into something interesting and I enjoyed the visuals. Episode 1 of 3 was a success.

yay!

The next couple of episodes were less of a hit with me. A lot of the plots were dedicated to Lucy’s very large chest and it got repetitive even for me. The characters weren’t really developing past their archetype first impression either and some of the jokes were clearly going over my head as I lacked the proper social context to appreciate them. Not many though. Servant x Service does a very good job at creating a sort of generic workplace most people will see something familiar in. Most people who have had entry-level jobs at least.

I considered dropping Servant x Service at this point but I was still unsure. I mean the 3 episode track record wasn’t great but it wasn’t awful either. Even in the episodes I thought were less interesting, I found something to enjoy and I still thought the first episode was great. I figured I would watch one more, which turned into 3 more because it was a Tuesday evening and I might as well just binge a few until bedtime.

I was about 6 episodes in by then and well, I still didn’t know. The romance plot(s) were surprisingly cute although I wasn’t that invested in them. Some things worked really well and others didn’t. I figured I would watch one more.

let’s see what happens

You might see where this is going… I basically did the three-episode rule until there were no more episodes left.

That’s not entirely true, somewhere in the second half of the series, I started to really enjoy it. Like a sitcom. I wasn’t terribly invested in anyone but at the same time, I found it pleasant to spend some time with the cast. It was an airy experience. I think I could easily have ended up binging 50 episodes yet I was perfectly fine with it ending and I’m not going to go out and look for more.

I will say, I did enjoy all the couples in the show. Romance is not a huge part of the series, but at the same time, in the latter half, most episodes do have at least one romantic plotline.

and this guy was the weirdest

One thing I will say. Most workplace sitcoms show co-workers that tend to be really close. I understand that it’s necessary for the setting to work. Everyone is kind of friends and they know a lot about each other’s private lives. I have friends at work but I wouldn’t say that I’m friends with most people there. They’re coworkers. So that part was not very relatable to me. I did however find myself a bit jealous. Thinking I would like to work in a place with all sorts of great people like that. I mean, I do, I just don,t know them. So I realize it’s on me. Servant x Service might have convinced me to be more sociable at work.

Then again, I work in a law firm. And if you’ve seen shows set in a law firm… Hey, I just thought of this, there are TONS of American law firm shows but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a law firm anime. Let me look it up. Ok, so I could only find two: Ace Attorney (I should have thought of that) and Wizard Barristers: Benmashi Cecil. I never heard of it, it’s pretty badly rated and the tags are Magic, Fantasy, Mecha so I’m not sure how representative it will be.

This post went off the rails even more than usual. Sometimes streams of consciousness just flow into random lakes. It happens.

As I was saying, Servant x Service ended up a fun show, I just needed to watch the whole thing to figure it out. It also has a great OP.

that’s what I was tinking

You might like this anime if:

You like workplace sitcoms. You’re really into storylines about girls with unusually big chests.

My favourite character:

You know, it has to me Hasabe’s sister. She rocks!

her introduction was awesome as well

Suggested drink:

a Krungthepmahanakhon Amornrattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilokphop
Noppharat Ratchathaniburirom Udomratchaniwetmahasathan Amonphiman
Awatansathit Sakkathattiyawitsanukamprasit

  • Every time Miyoshi gets stuck with an old lady – take a sip
  • Every time Ichimiya gets depressed – take a sip
  • Every time Hasebe is really good at his job – gasp!
  • Every time Hasebe is really bad at his job – oh good things are back to normal
  • Every time Toko gets mad – duck
  • Every time we hear Lucy’s entire name (or most of it) – take a sip
  • Every time anyone pats Lucy on the head – awwww
  • Every time Chihaya is work inappropriate – take a sip
  • Every time Lucy gets shiny glasses – take a sip
  • Every time we meet anyone’s sister – take a sip
  • Every time Lucy’s clueless – sigh
  • Every time someone gets hit in the head – take a sip
  • Every time Chihaya “jokes” – take a sip
  • Every time anyone sparkles – take a sip
  • Every time manager travels on someone’s head – take a sip
  • Every time Hasebe blushes – cute!
  • Every time Toko has sweets – get a treat!

I save all my screencaps on my Pinterest and you can find more there if you are interested. But I still like to show you a few in the post. If you’re like me, screencaps are something that really helps you decide to watch an anime or not.

17 thoughts

  1. I remember watching Wizard Barristers: Benmashi Cecil, and I enjoyed it. But you know, I haven’t thought about it since! I think that tells me something… Well, I do remember I liked Cecil’s design, but that’s par for the course for me…

    Aside fro the bunny, I liked watching Servant x Service. I watched it around the same time as Wagnari, and it had the same vibe, just much reduced.

  2. That’s one of the things I really like about small firms. Not just the complete chaos or the need for flexibility, but also the sense of camaraderie fostered by close collaboration & a set of common stakes.

    Nothing better than a bunch of colleagues taking the piss at each other, as they weather a storm together.

    Tangent over.

    1. I think part of it is that they’re civil servants. No market pressure and ridiculous job stability creates that sort of more relaxed athmosphere

        1. That sort of applies to every public service job… Apparently accidentally killing your customers is bad for business or something…

          1. It does go contrary to the Treasury Board Secretariat’s own stated guidelines, which were perfectly fine with rapid testing as an alternative — that is, before Trudeau & co. decided to kick-off their quest for a majority with a loud bang.

            The proposed policy doesn’t particularly annoy me, although it did raise the temperature a little bit more, which has helped him quite a bit on the campaign trail.

            1. I need proof of vaccination if I want to go into the office as well. Seems Trudeau wasn’t the only one with the idea. Not that there weren’t political considerations. Heck maybe they were entirely political but It still seems reasonable to me.
              I say they should balance it out. Make masks and vaccines mandatory and pants and soberness optional! ‘Cmon! (Except for those who need to drive. The gotta be sober but can go naked with a mask)

            2. The great majority of the country (which is already vaccinated) actually is on-board with that direction, just like your office. Despite the Liberal campaign’s struggle to explain the election’s timing (beside blatant opportunism) they know this issue polls very well with Canadians — which is why Trudeau quickly ditched the phony optimism, pivoting to dogged attacks on O’Toole’s approach — that helped him slow his early slump after calling the election. It was his most effective wedge issue against the Conservatives, before their dumb own-goal on gun rights, which will hugely hurt O’Toole’s fight for suburban seats / the GTA.

              Coming back to the policy, I do believe in the crucial role vaccines play in our pandemic recovery. I myself have taken four doses. (Long story.) But I understand the reticence of many folks, who have sadly lost faith in our political institutions, and never trusted Big Pharma to begin with. Some of these people also come from marginalized communities, with a shameful history of mistreatment at the hands of government. Their mistrust of vaccines may be unfounded, but I am partial to daily rapid testing coupled with masks / distancing as a viable alternative. It’s a minor accommodation to reassure people who genuinely are scared, while maintaining a high degree of safety for all. And of course, the gentle push to persuade hesitant folks to vaccinate themselves would run in parallel. Crucially, without antagonizing them! If you do, they dig deeper into their hole.

              I think that is the reasonable approach, both in terms of public health & social harmony. It’s a compromise the civil service itself — the very body responsible for implementing our pandemic strategy — was perfectly satisfied with. Of course, until the Prime Minister decided otherwise, for the sake of political expediency.

              I’m very worried about the level of polarization we’ve witnessed this election. The problem didn’t start with Trudeau, and I fear it will grow regardless of him. But by persistently casting Canadians into pro- & anti-vaccination groups, Trudeau creates a convenient foil to rally the majority of Canadians around him. The goal is to associate O’Toole with that boogeyman, painting him as an irresponsible steward of public safety. Unfortunately, that gambit has contributed to our country’s growing polarization — it lumps hesitant folks who believe they have reasonable concerns, with the rabid mobs harassing / victimizing Trudeau. Also, by stridently strong-arming sensitive citizens into taking the vaccine, Trudeau fans the flames of the PPC. The party has tripled its support since the election was called, largely thanks to the issue of mandatory vaccination — in terms of voting intentions, the party now polls nearly twice as high as the Greens! Many of these new converts used to vote Conservative, which the Liberals hope will split the right-of-center vote in a few swing ridings — just enough for Liberal candidates to sneak through the door, under our first-past-the-post system.

              This ruthless politicking is par for the course, with this government. Sometimes they use it for critical reasons — forcing the provinces to buy into carbon pricing was a vital step for the fight against climate change. Similarly, I can see the argument for withholding provincial health transfers, so as to ensure a high standard of healthcare across the country.

              But there are times where I feel the Liberals cross the line, in brazen pursuit / preservation of power. It makes me look much less favorably on them, despite broad alignment on a number of key issues. I think they’re still favorites to win a plurality of seats, but I sure hope they keep their minority parliament.

    1. I’m not a big fan of Ginger syrup but it actually doesn’t sound too bad. I doubt I would ever be able to memorize the name so as to order it though

  3. I mildly enjoyed the show, but I barely remember it. For example, the bunny robot is something I didn’t even remember after reading this post and seeing the picture. I’m drawing a complete blank. I also didn’t remember Lucy’s full name, but for once, I think, that’s not entirely on the leakiness of my memory. (Also that’s one cocktail name…) Forgettable shows are the best to re-watch, if you enjoyed them. It’s like watching them for the first time again, but with that faint comfortable feeling that you didn’t have the first time round.

Leave me a comment and make my day!