Dojin Work anime review

Dojin Work anime review
Doujin Work follows the life of a young girl named Najimi Osana and her exposure into the doujin world. She was first tempted into becoming a doujin artist after seeing how much one of her friends can make at a convention. Najimi loves to draw, though soon learns contrary to what she expected that this new world is anything but easy. As she attends more conventions and meets more people, Najimi eventually manages to find a group of very interesting friends. These friends already have some experience in the field and help her out along the way so that she can someday make a name for herself creating doujinshi.

I honestly didn't have high hopes for Doujin Work, but I decided to give it a shot. After all, doujinshi is a bit of a guilty pleasure of mine, and if Comic Party and Genshiken were any indication, there could be plenty of fun to be had here. While not quite as good as either of its predecessors, Doujin Work still manages a fair number of laughs for its short run time, especially considering that it's based off the four-panel gag manga format, which is notorious for being hit-or-miss upon adaptation into narrative form.

Still, don't expect any real ground to be broken here. Doujin Work's character design work, for example, feels like a slightly cutesified version of Comic Party's cast, with the only exception being the towering character Justice. In particular, the characters look young enough that it's really hard to believe that most of them are over eighteen (Najimi is drawn to look about 14, but is actually supposed to be 20). The inclusion of a mascot (a miniature dancing pair of bloomers) feels utterly irrelevant and even kind of offputting. Attempts at a plot come off as super-contrived to the point that the characters break the fourth wall noticing it.

Speaking of the characters, Masumi Asano (Hakufu Sonsaku in Ikki Tousen) as Najimi is likable enough; her reactions to the often highly perverted content of doujinshi and ero-games are particularly amusing. Tsuyuri (played by Momoko Saito, Solty Revant from Solty Rei) has an outward cuteness that belies her penchant for causing embarrassing misunderstandings, though this pales compared to the fact that she apparently makes all her money on rape manga. (This, fortunately, remains mostly offscreen and unexplored.) Justice (Hiroki Yasumoto, better known as equally gigantic Yasutora Sado in Bleach), who doubles as Najimi's childhood friend / protector and pretty-boy convention idol, is sort of a strange character, and his way-too-close relationship with the clearly underage cosplayer Sora Kitano (Kimiko Koyama, Re Mii in Zoids: Genesis) remains strangely unquestioned by the rest of the cast. Also present are a potential love interest, Junichiro Hoshi (relative newcomer Kazutoshi Hatano) and an unwitting rival, the yaoi-obsessed office lady Kaneru Nido (Ito Sakata, who sounds like she's perennially fighting off sinus allergies).

There is nothing here that will impress anyone on a technical level. The animation is often very simplistic, relying heavily on "flipping" characters on a two-dimensional plane, as if everyone in Tokyo were escapees from the world of Paper Mario. Non-essential characters aren't even properly colored, mostly in grays and sepia tones. While it never looks outright terrible, it does look very low-budget. The music isn't much better, with very peppy, but ultimately forgettable opening and ending tracks tied with unremarkable background themes.

Fortunately, Doujin Work is light enough and silly enough that its flaws don't matter too much. It's essentially a doujinshi-based sitcom, with characters put in circumstances that are mostly perverted in the minds of the characters involved (though every episode's title screens are plenty perverted no matter who's watching). There's surprisingly little truly offensive content, though, and the humor does a good job over overshadowing the series's technical inadequacies.

In short, Doujin Work is rather like one of Najimi's doujin manga: not tremendously skilled or technically impressive, but crafted with a fair amount of heart that shows through. At approximately two hours runtime, it's not like you'll feel like you're investing too much into this; it certainly won't compete for any awards, but it's a perfectly fine way to unwind from watching heavier shows.

 

Better than review, is a Trailer video of: Dojin Work. Watch it now:
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