Honestly Not A Robot is a story about retail. In a premium supermarket. In the UK.

Sometimes, I get the feeling slice-of-life comics don’t get the credit they deserve, and I think HNAR is doing a great job at what it aims to do: show the minutia of daily life of regular people who happen to work in retail jobs, and all the mess that comes with a public-facing job. And all the trouble that comes with being managed, micro-managed, or under-managed. And having to figure out solutions to problems that are not your responsibility, or how to work in a team where some of the players are difficult, and how to navigate all the personal drama that can so easily arise in these situations.

And Honestly Not a Robot does all of this with charm, humour and really funny art. The story begins following Ash Brown, a newcomer to Damson’s premium supermarket who is just looking for a job, and who quickly realises that everything in life requires very well-defined boundaries if you don’t want to be at the mercy of potential exploitation. People will try it.
The cast is full of some impressive personalities, from Kevin, the food service manager – who enjoys a good jog and lively outings – to Damian, the overworked team leader trainee who is surviving on coffee and despair. All their personalities shine really quickly as they get to know and welcome Ash into his new environment and give him a time. Everyone has different opinions on why they work retail and what they expect of the job, and what are their goals for it/after it. I find this personally very refreshing and humane, and it’s good to see a bunch of diverse people not being judged for the personal life stories and choices that lead them to working at the local supermarket.

For some reason, I get the feeling I can’t trust him. But I want to.

Honestly not a Robot IS a slice-of-life, so don’t expect a lot of fast-paced action or over-the-top drama. You can, however, expect to see workers trying to snatch some time off, hiding behind the bread and fleeing from customers. And you may even learn how to fillet a fish in the meanwhile!