Do you smell it? The smell of salt spreading all over the keyboard and the sweat of angry internet users. Do you hear it? The sound of a keyboard being furiously used and the disgruntled noises. Do you see it? The sight of avid internet users defending themselves on the internet. For you see, we are entering a war. A new war. Yet a war we have seen many times. It is The War of the Waifus.
Sit back, relax and barricade your house to protect yourself from the avid swarm of haters of your chosen best girl as I present to you the anime review of We Never Learn. Lets begin.
Nariyuki Yuiga strives himself in his studies to become a top student and provide a better life for his family by getting a VIP nomination to help cover all of his university Intuition fees. One day, the opportunity arrives to obtain the VIP nomination. But there is a catch. He must tutor the school’s top two students, Fumino Furuhashi and Rizu Ogata, and help with the subjects they are weak at in order for them to pursue their dream careers. With the VIP nomination on the line, Nariyuki must help them improve their grades before time to submit their university application runs out.
What was a simple case of helping out students with their studies slowly (and predictably) turns into a case of awkward meetings because the main female characters start to develop feelings for Nariyuki and Nariyuki is too dense to realise. This is amplified when you add characters Uraka Takemoto, Mafuyu Kirisu and Asumi Kominami to help set the harem. It mainly uses the tutoring aspect as a way at getting these female characters together and is mainly used to get to know more about them and why they want to succeed in the academic areas they struggle at. But slowly but, surely, the gimmick this show starts with is slowly not the focus of the show and what we get is another bog standard harem comedy with a diverse cast of female characters and a dense protagonist. It loses focus on what kind of story it wants to tell in favour of doing tropes and cliches that we’ve seen in other harem comedies.
As for the comedy of this show, it’s one of those rare cases where the comedy arguably gets better as the show goes on as the awkwardness increases. That’s not to say that it wasn’t funny at the beginning because there were humorous moments but the humour only got better as the show got on. But it does over-rely on using the misunderstanding card to humour the viewer quite a bit and can start to get tedious but there were plenty of humorous moments throughout the show to make quite amusing overall, but it can get tedious at times.
Another thing I criticise the story for is them balancing the screentime of the girls throughout the show. Rizu gets arguably pushed to the back as the show goes on past the halfway point. Whereas Asumi was introduced too late into the show despite being a breath of fresh air for this show. So it does have problems when balancing its girls and when we get to see them. Granted in Rizu’s case, we do get to see plenty of her in the first half and she moved aside for the other characters, but when you start adding characters, you need to start balancing it out. But the show struggles to do that at times.
Nariyuki does have aspects of his character and personality that would be considered cliched. The main aspect (which is shared among MCs in this situation) is him being dense to the girls’ feelings when it comes to love and such. Well not all of them, but some of them. I would say it is on the rather endearing side because all he wants is to make sure that he helps these girls in their studies. Sure there is the VIP nomination, but his attention rather turns to helping them, which causes them to develop feelings. But the genericness really does kick in at times and it really does feel like he does not want to act on this and is just let things happen. I know he’s focused on his studies but come on man.
Now the female characters, the harem, is a diverse cast which is supposed to be because you want each of these girls to have their own personality and stand out of in their own way. What this show does great though is that each girl have certain qualities and quirks that make interesting and endearing and have set goals they want to achieve in life. So it’s hard to decide which girl is best because, Fumino is best girl, Rizu is best girl, Uraka is best girl, Kirisu is best girl and Asumi is best girl. This show is in a weird position where you can make a case why which character is the best one and you would have good reasons why.
If I had to describe this show’s animation with one word, it would have to be, “Vibrant.” The show’s art direction is very colourful with plenty of striking scenes to make it vibrant. It matches the light hearted tone this show has so I see it as being very appropriate. There are the typical facial expressions and movements used to add humour to a scene by exaggerating it. Some of them are amusing though (Rizu’s pout face will always be adorable). Honestly, the show’s art style makes me feel comfortable, as if the usual day to day lives of our characters are something you can just relax and see how well they can get along with each other.
I didn’t expect the ost to be as dramatic as it is but does consist of some of the more memorable soundtracks from the show. It is normally used when we get to know more about our characters to add some humanity to a scene. While there are other soundtracks that are used mainly for comedic timing the soundtracks for the show’s more touching scenes are more memorable.
I very much enjoyed this opening mainly for its cinematography and how well some shots in this anime opening and has some very good animation. The song “Seishun Seminar” by study was a nice, uplifting song to get you hyped for the episode and timed well with some of the scenes in the opening. The ending sequence was also really good and is my favourite from this season, just beating out Isekai Quartet and Sarazanmai’s ending sequence. I’m a big fan of the chalkboard art style used to match the school setting. Study also does song; this time being called “Never Give It Up,” which was another nice uplifting song to match the tone of the show and is good to end off the episode.
I will say that this show struggles to have an original bone in its body as the show consists of aspects we’ve seen from other shows like this. Its protagonist is generic at times and the whole gimmick of this show slowly boils down and is heavily downplayed so we can focus on the romance element. Yet it also has a good cast of girls and the shows animation is good to look at and a good soundtrack. No doubt this show will probably be remembered for the arguments as to who was best girl in this series. But if you are looking for a fresh take on the harem comedy, then this ain’t it. It tried to be with the focus on these girls getting better with their studies, but the standard harem comedy tropes kick in and we get a show of two halves, one that is generic, the other is not. While it is entertaining and the humour is funny, it isn’t what I consider to be a must watch but it is the kind of show that it is best to formulate your own opinion on. While I did enjoy my time watching this show, there are aspects from the show that I didn’t like. But who knows, maybe my criticisms will be addressed in season 2 (hopefully).
My personal enjoyment: 7/10
Overall score: 6.8/10 Recommendation: Consider it