Cells at Work! Spin-Off Series Coming This Summer
I’ve been enjoying Cells at Work!, the manga series by Akane Shimizu that anthropomorphizes red and white blood cells and dramatizes various body processes.
(I’m not sure what’s going on with volume 6. The February Previews catalog had a listing for it, due out mid-April, but that code now shows “item not found”. Amazon has a release date of 2080, which means its unavailable for order, although they also have a volume 7 coming out in October. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about.)
Kodansha has announced a followup series, Cells at Work! Code Black, coming this summer. The premise of this one twists from the first by looking at an older, less healthy body and flipping the genders of the cells. It’s written by Shigemitsu Harada, art by Issei Hatsuyoshiya, a change from the original series author.
In this new spinoff of the hit manga, a newbie Red Blood Cell is one of 37 trillion working to keep this body running. But something’s wrong! Stress hormones keep yelling at him to go faster. The blood vessels are crusted over with cholesterol. Ulcers, fatty liver, trouble (ahem) downstairs … It’s hard for a cell to keep working when every day is a CODE BLACK! The manga and anime Cells at Work! showed you what happens when a young, healthy body gets in trouble … but what if the body wasn’t so young and was never very healthy? This new take stars a fresh-faced Red Blood Cell and his friend, the buxom White Blood Cell, as they struggle to keep themselves and their world together through alcoholism, smoking, erectile dysfunction, athlete’s foot, gout … it’s literal body horror! Surgeon General’s warning: only for cells 18 years and up!
There have been three volumes of this spin-off published so far in Japan.