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New Job Episode

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That's one heck of a resume.

"(sighs) Another red-letter day in the life of Donald Duck — off to yet another new job! I'll probably be fired by lunch, so expect me home early!"
Donald Duck, The Duck Who Never Was

An episode where a character gets a new job for a week or so. Often happens in teen sitcoms and teen dramas, where a character is forced to get a job by their parents to teach them An Aesop about responsibility or the value of a dollar. At the end of the episode, they're usually allowed to quit so things can Snap Back. It also might be some career, such as singing or cooking, that the character temporarily decides to pursue before something impedes them or they lose interest. If a character has George Jetson Job Security, they might be forced to go through a New Job Episode every so often till Mr. Spacely rehires them.

Compared and contrast New Job as the Plot Demands, where a previously-seen character already has a new job for the sake of an Economy Cast.

If the character is a teen, expect them to work at a crappy fast food joint, a tacky mid-level chain restaurant, a kiddie arcade/pizza place for snot-nosed brats and their parents celebrating their birthdays, or in retail hell (bonus points if it's an Expy of WalMart).

If the character is particularly unqualified for their new job, it might be Under Strange Management.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • The '90s Tamagotchi TV series Anime de Hakken!! Tamagotchi has an episode where Mametchi takes up the job of a traffic cop. He's quite good at it, except for when he inadvertently holds up traffic twice - once when he's on lunch break, and again when he goes to sleep for the night. While he's still at the intersection.
  • Part of the sixth episode of Asteroid in Love involves Mira and Ao working at the Suzuya Bakery for one day, mainly to earn money for club activities—the Earth Sciences Club is a Club Stub, so members often have to pay out of their pockets.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura: Touya Kinomoto. He says it's to make money for college, but many believe that he does it to keep an eye on his sister Sakura. In the Manga version he does actually buy a motorcycle with it, but then he doesn't use it as hes afraid Sakura will try to follow on her rollerblades.
  • Haruka Nogizaka's Secret: In order to be able to buy something to give Haruka for Christmas, Yuuto became a butler for one week. The antics of his sister and his homeroom teacher cost him almost all he earned so he's briefly seen holding another job in another episode.
  • Hot Gimmick: Shinogu Narita somehow manages to have a job in every single place his sister Hatsumi goes with Ryoki.
  • Karin: Fumio Usui, Kenta's mother, suffers from this. Of course, half the time the fault is being So Beautiful, It's a Curse.
  • Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt: In an effort to pay for extensive damages to public property, Panty and Stocking try out various jobs, though they eventually settle on gambling.

    Asian Animation 
  • In episode 34 of Happy Heroes, Sweet S., who normally works as a superhero to defend planet Xing Xing from danger, learns how to be a hospital nurse. The job lasts only for that one episode.
  • In Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf episode 342, Sparky becomes a police officer and monitors Goat Village. He does this in an attempt to impress Tibbie.

    Comic Books 
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: Donald Duck. However, his boss is usually his uncle, Scrooge. Justified when Scrooge isn't his boss: Donald invariably becomes so good at the new job that he grows arrogant enough to do something incredibly stupid, leading to the job spectacularly blowing up in his face (for a rather appropriate example, the story where he was a veritable artist of using explosions for everything ranging from controlled demolitions to cooking ended up with him trying to blow up an ancient sequoia sitting on a fault line that ran under Scrooge's Money Bin. You can guess what happened... And the sequoia survived). That, or he becomes so good that his own skills backfire on him (the story with him as a hyperrealistic house decorator ended with his customers chasing him for such things as the house decorated with stars having indoor meteor showers).

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Works 

  • In the children's book "Bea and Mister Jones" Mr. Jones is tired of his job in advertising, and his daughter Bea is tired of kindergarten. They decide to switch. Bea dresses in daddy's suit and becomes the hero of the advertising company by coming up with the perfect motto for a product, and Mr. Jones becomes the teacher's pet at the kindergarten because he can recognize the colors, and could rescue a boy stuck up a tree.
  • In the novel "A Confederacy of Dunces" by John Kennedy Toole, the main character Ignatius J. Reilly is sent out by his mother to find work after a disastrous drunk driving incident leads to a law suit. He finds two jobs, one in the office of a garment factory, the other as a hot dog seller. Both are disasters.
  • House of Robots: Robot Revolution: E tries to help the other robots break the monotony of their routines by programming new jobs into their code. He makes Groomatron Sammy's personal advisor, puts Brittany 13 in charge of grocery shopping, makes the Breakfastinator to laundry, has Mr. Moppenshine be the gardener, has Hayseed cook meals, and has Blitzen attempt to fix the SUV. Sammy considers the idea a failure right off the bat.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Austin & Ally: Exaggerated and played for laughs. Trish is known for getting new jobs and getting fired quickly. She often gets more than one new job per episode.
  • Happened on The Brady Bunch a couple of times, with a couple of the kids. Peter got a job in a bike shop briefly in one, and Greg briefly worked for his dad at the architect firm, as a delivery boy.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Xander having a different menial job every episode was a running gag throughout season 4, where he had a crisis of character as his friends went to college and he thought that he was doomed to lower-class work for the rest of his life. He eventually settled into construction, which lasted for the remainder of the season and came in handy several times as he repaired the Scooby residences. Holding the job and working his way up to supervising positions was part of his Character Development in the final three seasons.
    • Buffy gets a job at a fast food restaurant in season six in order to pay the bills after she is left in charge of her house and younger sister in the wake of mother's death. Subverted in that, after a wacky "mystery meat" filler episode that seemed to effectively end the job, Buffy went back and kept the job for a good while since the bills needed paying. The monotonous and degrading nature of the job symbolized her character disconnect and depression during the sixth season.
  • One episode of Clarissa Explains It All had the main character get a different after school job for every day of the week, which quickly burned her out after a while.
  • Happened with such regual frequency on Corner Gas that it was lampshaded in the season finale
    Oscar: Why the hell settle? We never settled! I'm a paperboy one week, you teach piano the next, the next week Lacey's a hockey coach, Wanda's a real estate agent, Hank's an accountant, the cops have a radio show! We all try new things.
  • CSI: NY: Mac uses his comp time to temporarily leave the Crime Lab and work at Piper Laboratories trying to come up with new ways of extracting and testing DNA in order to identify 9/11 victims and give their families some closure. Although it's implied he did so over the series' summer hiatus, he's only away from the Lab onscreen for the Season 8 premiere, "Indelible," the show's tribute to the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks.
  • Drake & Josh: The stepbrothers temporarily get jobs at a fish packaging plant in an homage to I Love Lucy's candy factory episode.
  • On Friends, Joey has held several temporary jobs, including working at Chandler's office, Monica's restaurant, Ross's museum and even Central Perk (this one even lasted more than one episode).
  • Every Bundy (even Peg's never-seen mother) has one on Married... with Children. While not the main plotline, one episode has Jefferson working his first day at a car wash when Steve Rhoades makes a return appearance as a chauffeur.
  • Matthew in NewsRadio quits the radio station and ends up working at the coffee shop downstairs (but only for one day).
  • Our Miss Brooks: "Vitamin E-12" and "Le Chien Chaud Et Le Mouton Noir" see Miss Brooks get positions outside school.
  • Schitt's Creek:
    • Alexis gets a job as Ted's receptionist and figures out quickly that she's actually going to have to perform work.
    • David gets a job at The Blouse Barn, and his boss Wendy turns out to be quite understanding of David's quirks and mentors him.
    • Moira treats her first day as a city councilwoman like the opening night of a play and dresses accordingly.
  • Seinfeld: Parodied in "The Bizarro Jerry". Kramer gets mistaken for an employee at a company called Brandt-Leland and plays along with it, appreciating the structure that a 9-to-5 job adds to his life, till they realize what's going on and he gets "fired".
  • In That '70s Show, Eric becomes a Burger Fool because his family needs the extra money, but quits because he doesn't get to spend much time with his girlfriend.
  • Young Sheldon: In "A High-Pitched Buzz and Training Wheels", Sheldon takes on a paper route to pay back George for the refrigerator.

    Western Animation 
  • 6teen: Whenever his employment is a plot point of some kind, Jonesy Garcia (the poster boy for George Jetson Job Security) has a new job in pretty much every single episode of the series—he has a tendency to be lazy, irresponsible, or to just plain suck at the job in question.
  • Bob's Burgers: In "Lindapendent Woman", Linda ends up working at an upscale grocery store to help make ends meet. She takes on a full-time position as manager when she feels Bob doesn't appreciate her, but when the other employees take advantage of Linda's helpfulness she quickly reaches her limit.
  • The Boondocks:
    • In "Bitches to Rags", Thugnificent's career in hip-hop music ends in disaster, and is now left in deep trouble trying to pay off his massive debts. He decides to become a drug dealer selling crack cocaine, but that doesn't work out too well. He eventually settles for working a more humble job as a UPS mailman.
    • In Season 4, Robert Freeman is forced by his bankruptcy and debt to Ed Wuncler II to start working various odd jobs. This includes the humiliation of working in a car wash with Uncle Ruckus as his manager. Later in "Early Bird Special", Robert is hired by elderly women to be an "escort" (male prostitute) for lonely younger women.
  • Daria features an episode where the titular character works at a shop dispensing nuts.
  • Happens frequently to Timmy's Dad on The Fairly OddParents!, despite being shown to have a regular job at a pencil factory/office in most episodes. Nevertheless he's had episodes where he became an astronaut, a farmer, sock monkey salesman, a scientist and an episode where he swapped jobs every five seconds. Timmy's Mom goes through the same things, while usually shown as either a realtor/housewife, she's had episodes focusing on a career change such as when she became a weather girl.
  • Family Guy has a number of episodes of this type, with Peter starting some business or getting on with some scam. However, unlike a lot of shows, Peter's regular job is subject to periodic change; some of these seemingly one-shot job episodes, around season openers mostly, have stuck for years, so it's sometimes not completely obvious until the end of the episode whether he'll go back to his old job, stay at the new one, or be unemployed again and need to seek a job in later stories.
  • Kaeloo: Episode 93 has Stumpy and Quack Quack learning how to be firefighters. They are so incompetent that they fail to learn anything properly and the job only lasts for one episode.
  • Kim Possible: Played straight and subverted. In the Season 1 episode "Bueno Nacho," Kim gets a job to buy a new jacket and pulls Ron in with her—despite Ron's success at the job, both have quit/lost their job by the end of the episode. But in the fourth/final season (the one where Kim and Ron are high school seniors and are now dating), "The Big Job" provides both a subversion and a straight example:
    • Kim gets a part-time job at Club Banana in the Middleton Mall, largely due to her friend, Monique, who had been working there since her debut episode—one thing that convinced Kim was Club Banana's employee discount.
    • Ron spends the whole episode finding and losing strange episodes (one of which was at the Middleton Zoo) before getting a job at Smarty Mart at the end of the episode.
      • Both of these jobs would last through the season and even be mentioned, have characters seen working there, or have episodic plots relating to them.
  • The Lizzie episode "My Dad, the Lunchlady" has Lizzie Green's father start working at the cafeteria to appease his wife's demands that he get a job. The principal fires him after it turns out that he forgot to wear pants to work.
  • On Mission Hill, a two-part episode details the closing of the waterbed store where Andy worked and his eventual hiring by Jim at an advertising agency.
  • The Patrick Star Show: In "Bummer Jobs", SpongeBob and Patrick decide to be grocery baggers, taxis (not taxi drivers; actual taxis), house painters, and newspaper delivery boys. They only succeed at the last one.
  • The Raccoons: In "Moving In!", Cyril Sneer fires the Pigs after they accidentally shred his money and they get new jobs at Mr. Knox's TV studio as actors/stuntmen for Three Guys with a Cause. Mr. Knox fires them after they accidentally disrupt the broadcast of Chef Surprise and Cyril rehires them.
  • Rick and Morty: In "Something Ricked This Way Comes", Summer gets a job at a store run by the Devil. Rick starts his own business across the street just to spite the Devil. By the end of the episode, the Devil fires Summer, while Rick burns his place down to avoid dealing with paperwork.
  • The Simpsons is infamous for this. Homer boasts an unbelievably long résumé. Among the episodes that Lampshade this are these gems:
    • "Homer's Enemy", wherein hardworking Frank Grimes, who has had to struggle his way through life, learns that incurably lazy Homer has, among other accomplishments, met ex-President Gerald Ford, toured with a rock group, and been to outer space:
      Grimes: [pointing to a photo] Hey, is that...
      Homer: Yep. That's me. And the man standing next to me is former President Gerald Ford. And that's me on tour with The Smashing Pumpkins. And that's me in outer space!
      Grimes: You... Went into outer space? You?
      Homer: Sure. You've never been? Want to see my Grammy Award?
    • "Papa's Got a Brand-New Badge", where the list is long enough that Marge manages to get completely ready for bed (including putting rolls in her 3 feet of hair) before it's over. The quote It doesn't even list a few others he's been: He's also served in the military in both the Army and Navy Reserve and he's also been a fast food employee, a spring salesman, a snake oil salesman (together with Grandpa), a monorail engineer, a community safety watchdog, a community college teacher, an chiropractor, an employee for a mini-golf place, a fisherman, an organic juice maker, a mall Santa, a bounty hunter, an extortionist (collecting money for Fat Tony), webmaster (as "Mr. X"), an ice-cream man, a volunteer fireman, pilot, safety technician, a police informant (more than once), a blackjack dealer, and he worked at Praiseland (a separate instance from when he was a carny at a regular carnival). Not technically jobs include leader of a Brotherhood of Funny Hats, and a vigilante (both in the pastry wielding and standard gun wielding variety).
    • Although nowhere near as many, a few episodes have been about Marge getting a job or starting a business venture, including a cop, manager of a chain of pretzel stands, real estate agent, owner of a women's-only fitness center, and lumberjack.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: While SpongeBob loves his job at the Krusty Krab, there have been times where he has been forced to get another job temporarily. He has worked for Plankton at the Chum Bucket in "Welcome to the Chum Bucket", in "Model Sponge" he has also been a model for a new sponge commercial. In "SpongeBob, You're Fired", "Le Big Switch", and "Salty Sponge", he works at different restaurants. There's also a few instances of SpongeBob having new jobs as the plot demands, such as being a hotel employee, babysitter, lounge singer, museum security guard, trainee prison guard, surgeon, mailman, and policeman.
  • Teen Titans: Beast Boy gets a job at Mega Meaty Meat Hut, which is the last place he wants to work, as he's a vegetarian. The manager of the restaurant is actually an alien that strongly resembles block tofu and wants to replace meat with a vegetarian friendly option-while he steals all the cows in the world to fuel his spaceship, at which point he'll blow up Earth.