Cells At Work! Season 2 release date confirmed for 2021: When will Hataraku Saibou Season 2 come out?

Cells At Work! key art
The Cells At Work! Season 2 anime will continue the story of Red Blood Cell AE3803 and White Blood Cell U-1146 from the Hataraku Saibou manga series. Pic credit: David Production

A new trailer shows that the Cells At Work! Season 2 release date is coming up during the winter of 2021. The Hataraku Saibou Season 2 release date is scheduled for January 9, 2021.

The number of episodes for Cells At Work! Season 2 has been revealed. There will be only 8 episodes spread across four Blu-Ray/DVD disc volumes.

All in all, there were 37.2 trillion reasons for a second season to happen. Joking aside, the anime was one of the most popular anime on Crunchyroll and other streaming services when it aired. From a financial perspective, the Blu-Ray/DVD sales numbers were also very good, almost double that of the My Hero Academia Season 3 disc sales.

Officially titled Cells At Work!! (two exclamation point), the Hataraku Saibou Season 2 anime will also provide an advance screening of one of the episodes during the fall of 2020.

Called Cells at Work! The Return of the Strongest Enemy. A Huge Uproar Inside the Body’s Bowels!, the episode is based on a story from Volume 5 of the manga series. The new episode will first premiere in Japanese theaters on September 5, 2020, but then will be streaming with the rest of Cells At Work!! Season 2 in 2021.

The Japanese movie release will also include an animated short called The Platelets Go To The Movie Theater. Just like it sounds, the story is about the adorable little Platelets watching a movie after work.

What’s more, the Cells At Work! CODE BLACK anime has the opportunity to build on the success of the anime series by expanding into a new body of work.

Puns aside, it has been confirmed that a second anime series will draw upon the multiple spin-offs that the original series has inspired and go beyond the story of Red Blood Cell AE3803 and White Blood Cell U-1146. CODE BLACK will be 13 episodes spread over seven Blu-Ray/DVD volumes. (Please read the related article for the Cells At Work! CODE BLACK release date.)

Cells At Work Platelets
The theatrical premiere of Cells At Work!! Season 2 will include an animated short called Platelets Go To The Movie Theater. Pic credit: David Production

The Cells At Work! Season 2 anime is being produced by animation studio David Productions, which is also working on Fire Force Season 2 anime (and, hopefully, the JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 6 anime).

David Production could not fit the Cells At Work! Season 2 anime into its busy schedule for 2020. The anime studio had Fire Force Season 2, JoJo OVA episodes, and Strike Witches Season 3 planned for 2020.

Most of the main staff are returning except for the director. Director Kenichi Suzuki (Drifters, JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) helmed the first season, but director Hirofumi Ogura (Black Butler) will take over for Cells At Work! Season 2. For the first season, the director and series composition writer Yuuko Kakihara (Persona 4) worked together to create the anime script.

Character designer Takahiko Yoshida (Welcome To The NHK) is also the chief animation director. Kenta Mimuro and Keiko Tomaki also created some of the character designs. Re:ZERO and Girls’ Last Tour music composer Kenichiro Suehiro is creating the music for the Cells At Work! Season 2 anime.

The Cells At Work! Season 2 OP (opening) music theme song will be “Go! Go! Cell Festa” as performed by the Japanese voice actor cast, while the ending (ED) is “Fight!!” as performed by ClariS.

The first season’s OP was “Mission! Health First,” as performed by Kana Hanazawa, Tomoaki Maeno, Daisuke Ono, and Kikuko Inoue, while the ED was “CheerS” by ClariS.

The first season was 13 episodes and streamed on Crunchyroll. A Cells At Work! English dub was released with the Blu-Ray box set in 2019.

Crunchyroll also streamed the Cells At Work! OVA episode that originally aired in December 2018.

Cells At Work Season 2 Announcement Key Visual
The key visual for the Cells At Work! Season 2 announcement. Pic credit: David Production
  • Updated January 8, 2021: Confirmed CODE BLACK’s total number of episodes and BD/DVD disc volumes.
  • Updated December 10, 2020: Cells At Work! CODE BLACK manga ending in Volume 8. Cells At Work! Volume 6 release date confirmed for February 2021.
  • Updated November 30, 2020: Cells At Work!! Season 2 release date confirmed. Added Trailer and OP/ED info.
  • Updated September 25, 2020: New Cells At Work! manga chapters and new spinoff Cells At Work! WHITE.
  • Updated August 14, 2020: Added new Cells at Work! CODE BLACK trailer.
  • Updated July 6, 2020: Cells At Work! Season 2 theater premiere date confirmed. Added new key visual and July 2020 trailer.
  • Updated April 13, 2020: Cells At Work! CODE BLACK anime confirmed!
  • Updated March 21, 2020: Cells At Work! Season 2 release time frame confirmed! Added trailer, new key visual, and staff info.

This article provides everything that is known about Cells At Work! Season 2 (Hataraku Saibou Season 2) and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news, rumors, and analysis. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.

Cells At Work! Episode 14 was an OVA episode

Not too long after the first season released, a Cells At Work! OVA episode was released in Japan on December 24, 2018. Crunchyroll aired the OVA episode with English subtitles starting December 26, 2018. Titled Common Cold Syndromes, the story is based on manga chapter 11 of Volume 3.

While a chapter about the common cold sounds cut and dry storywise, it’s actually a comedy about a bored common cell teaming up with an infected cell. The story opens up with immune cells being pranked by the two cells.

Unfortunately for that common cell, he figures out very quickly that his new “friend” has not-so-friendly intentions. Of course, the immune system saves the day, and then the killer T-cells are forced to socialize.

Cells At Work! anime praised by real doctors

The Cells At Work! anime is popular even with real-life doctors and scientists because of its accurate portrayal of how the human body works.

Dr. Satoru Otsuka, of the molecular neuro-oncology department of Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia, especially loved Episode 7 “Cancer Cell” because it showed how immune cells prevented the initial outbreak of cancer.

“Even from the point of view of a cancer researcher, I think the content was very accurate,” said Dr. Otsuka, who believes that watching the anime can be a “good opportunity to understand cancer in detail.”

In real life, the immune system rallies to fight off early-stage cancer hundreds of times per day. The strong immune system of a young person can keep cancer at bay, but older people suffer from more cell copying errors.

Growing cancer cells also eat up nutrients quickly (which was shown in the anime episode), and rapid, unexpected weight loss can be an early warning sign.

“You can’t remember with textbooks about living things,” he said, “but with this you can remember. Definitely check out the manga or anime.”

In China, Cells At Work! has become the most popular anime on Bilibili, which is like a Chinese Netflix. It’s been watched about 27 percent more than the Overlord anime, the second most popular anime this season in China.

Biology teachers in China were so impressed by the anime’s scientific accuracy that they assigned watching it as homework.

“It helps students understand and remember the biology information they have learned in school, in a much more entertaining way,” said Yang, a faculty teacher at the High School Affiliated to Southwest University.

Cells At Work Hataraku Saibou Anime Red Blood Cell
The Hataraku Saibou manga continues to deliver up new chapters every month. Pic credit: David Production

Cells At Work! Season 3 unlikely since the main manga series ended in 2021?

The story of the Cells At Work! anime is based on the Hataraku Saibou manga series by Akane Shimizu. She won the 27th Sirius New Age Award for best newcomer manga and the Cells At Work! manga is her debut work.

Serialized monthly in Monthly Shonen Sirius since 2015, the manga has spawned multiple volumes composed of 30 chapters. Cells At Work! Volume 5 was released in Japan on December 18, 2018. Volume 6 came out on February 9, 2021.

The official English translation of the Cells At Work! manga is being published internationally by Kodansha Comics. Thankfully, the English release is completely caught up with the Japanese manga with the exception of Volume 6.

For a time, a new volume came out once or twice a year, but then the main series stopped as the manga branched out into the many spin-offs. In September 2020, Monthly Shonen Sirius magazine announced that the main manga series would finally get a new chapter on October 26, 2020.

The main manga series began releasing new chapters on a regular basis again. But the manga ended with Chapter 30 on January 26, 2021.

A Cells At Work! Season 3 anime seems very unlikely considering that the second season will finish adapting all of the currently available chapters.

Cells At Work! manga compared to the Hataraku Saibou anime

When studio David Production chose to adapt the story, they went the straight-forward path of following the Cells At Work! manga pretty closely. In the Cells At Work! anime, each episode tends to focus on introducing a different element of the human body.

The episodic nature of the story is the same in the manga, with multi-chapter plots being fairly rare.

In general, each manga chapter is adapted into a single episode. The opening episode was the same story as the first chapter, but otherwise, the anime changed up the ordering of the story significantly.

The titles of episodes matched up with the names of chapters, so it’s pretty easy to see which chapters were adapted.

  • Cells At Work! Episode 1: Chapter 1 “Pneumococcus”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 2: Chapter 4 “Scrape Wound”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 3: Chapter 3 “Influenza”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 4: Chapter 5 “Food Poisoning”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 5: Chapter 2 “Cedar Pollen Allergy”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 6: Chapter 7 “Erythroblasts and Myelocytes” and Chapter 8 “Cancer Cells Part 1”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 7: Chapter 9 “Cancer Cells Part 2”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 8: Chapter 10 “The Circulatory System”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 9: Chapter 12 “Thymocytes”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 10: Chapter 15 “Staphylococcus aureus”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 11: Chapter 6 “Heat Stress”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 12: Chapter 17 “Hypovolemic Shock Part 1”
  • Cells At Work! Episode 13: Chapter 18 “Hypovolemic Shock Part 2”

Thankfully for fans who want to read ahead of the anime, there were many skipped chapters. To quickly summarize, if you don’t feel like waiting for Cells At Work! Season 2, then you should read Chapters 13, 14, 16, and 19 through 25.

As previously mentioned, Chapters 26 through 30 released in February 2021 as part of Cells At Work! Volume 6.

The only problem Cells At Work! Season 2 is the lack of source material in the main manga series. With only 15 chapters unadapted, there are barely enough stories for producing the Cells At Work! Season 2 anime.

That’s the reason the second season will only be 8 episodes long. The only way David Production could have extended the main anime series was to supplement from side stories from Bacteria At Work! and Cells That Don’t Work!

Cells At Work BLACK Manga Volume 1 Cover Art
The main characters of Cells At Work! BLACK are like a reversal of the main series, with BLACK featuring a male Red Blood Cell and a sexy female White Blood Cell. Yes, it’s all about the oppai in the spin-of. Pic credit: Issei Hatsuyoshi

The Cells At Work! CODE BLACK anime is a standalone story

Although the main series has not been continued in over a year, the popular manga series inspired multiple spin-offs in 2017. The Bacteria At Work! (Hataraku Saikin) manga by Haruyuki Kichida is a story about good bacteria and bad bacteria waging war in the intestines.

Similarly, the Cells That Don’t Work! (Hatarakanai Saibo) manga by Moe Sugimoto shows what happens when immature red blood cells just wanna be NEETs.

Starting in May 2019, anime composition writer Yuuko Kakihara and artist Yasu teamed up to create yet another spin-off called Platelets At Work (Hataraku Kesshoban-chan). As might be guessed, the new manga will focus on the adorable platelets.

Shimizu is also supervising another manga called Cells at Work! Friend by writer Kanna Kurono and artist Mio Izumi. Finally, there are the Cells At Work! Baby manga which, as you might guess, is a story about chibi-like cells working in a human baby.

These side stories could potentially be used to create Cells At Work! Season 3, but one of the most interesting premises was launched in June 2018 by Shigemitsu Harada.

Titled Cells At Work! CODE BLACK (Hataraku Saibo BLACK), the manga tells the story of cells living inside a human body suffering from an unhealthy lifestyle since he drinks and eats too much, has insufficient physical activity, and has high stress. It features stories related to smoking, alcohol, STDs, and even erection problems.

This spin-off manga is up to Cells At Work! CODE BLACK Volume 7 as of September 2020. The Cells At Work! BLACK manga is already up to 40 chapters, which is more than enough content for a standalone anime.

The Cells At Work! CODE BLACK manga’s ending will be released as part of Volume 8 on February 22, 2021.

Since the main series didn’t have enough chapters, it made sense to create a Cells At Work! BLACK anime adaptation. It needs to be a separate story since BLACK takes place in a completely different body, so the two main characters are different.

Unfortunately, only the Cells At Work! CODE BLACK manga has been officially translated into English for release in North America by Penguin Random House. However, there are fan-made scanlation projects for some of the other spin-offs.

The Cells At Work! Code Black anime release date is scheduled for January 2021, the winter 2021 anime season. It will have 13 episodes. Please see the related article for more information.

Cells At Work!!
The advance screening of one of the Hataraku Saibou! Season 2 episodes is scheduled for Japanese theaters on September 5, 2020. The episode is called “The Return of the Strongest Enemy. A Huge Uproar Inside the Body’s Bowels” and it’s adapting a chapter from Volume 5. The episode will probably tease the return of cancer, which is not a surprise since he’s featured in the new key visual. Pic credit: David Production

Cells At Work!! WHITE is all about those bloodthirsty white blood cells

In September 2020, Monthly Shonen Sirius announced a new manga spinoff called Cells At Work!! WHITE (Hataraku Saibou!! WHITE). As might be surmised by the title alone, the story is focused on the White Blood Cells.

The first chapter of the new Cells At Work!! WHITE manga will be released in the December issue of the magazine. The new manga spinoff will be drawn by artist Tetsuji Kanie, who previously worked on Hypnosis Mic: Division Rap Battle -side B.B. & M.T.C.

Based on the monthly release schedule, it will be mid-2022 by the time there are enough chapters available for creating a Cells At Work!! WHITE anime series.

Cells At Work Season 2 Anime Key Visual Hataraku Saibou Season 2

A Cells At Work Season 2 key visual released in March 2020. Pic credit: David Productions

Cells At Work! Season 2 spoilers (plot summary/synopsis)

The Cells At Work! Season 2 anime will likely begin with stories about how memory cells help acquire immunity to viruses and how acne bacteria cause pimples. As might be expected, the latter story has an explosive ending.

The hysterical antics of Mast Cell and her histamine dumping will also make a return for a bout of dengue fever. Other medical problems like strep throat and hay fever also make an appearance.

One chapter will show anime audiences a wandering platelet, who is trying to train to become stronger.

While the platelets have always been depicted as young and cute, their leader, Megakaryocyte, is… not so much. She’s more like a baby-packing drill instructor.

Cells At Work Megakaryocyte Character Manga Chapter 26
Megakaryocyte debuts in Chapter 26 of the manga series and should make for an interesting character in Cells At Work! Season 2. ic credit: Akane Shimizu
Chapter 27 will provide more character backstory since it has White Blood Cell U-1146 and Eosinophil reminiscing about their childhood together as they lay dying on the battlefield.

The chapter also reveals the true identity of the mysterious poetry-quoting Basophil.

The return of Cancer Cell was promised in the middle of the first season so it would make sense for Cells At Work! Season 2 to end with that fated battle even though that’d adapt manga chapters out of order.

White Blood Cell U-1146, Killer T, and Natural Killer Cell will team up once again to take on this nemesis. Killer T has transformed into Memory T Cell and thinks he can easily predict Cancer’s actions, but Cancer has a new trick up his sleeve… and a new ally?!

Those chapters also introduce the concept of good and bad bacteria living in the intestinal tract. Therefore, it would make sense to incorporate the side stories from the Bacteria At Work! manga into the main anime series once that introduction is made.

Whether or not David Production decides to adapt the spin-offs along with the main manga series, let’s just hope the production of Cells At Work! Season 2 does not suffer from clogged arteries. Stay tuned!

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