Are you keeping up the huge number of quality anime series we’ve got this season, thanks to several shows getting bumped as a result of the virus? I’m following 15+ shows each week, which has to be a new record for me. One show I’m enjoying is the second season of Quintessential Quintuplets, the cute harem show in which five identical twins receive tutoring from the cynical Fuutarou, each falling in love with him and trying to win his heart. Which girl do you think will win the “waifu wars”?
Quintessential Quintuplets is the Best Anime for Waifus!
If you love “seasonal waifus,” then this is a great show for you, because you get five adorable sisters, each competing for Fuutarou’s heart in her way. Best of all, some of Japan’s most popular voice actresses do the girls’ voices, so if you’re a fan who obsesses over seiyu then this is an anime you don’t want to miss!
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The five Nakano quintuplets are:
Ichika (一花), voiced by legendary voice actress Hana Kanazawa, or “the Tuturu! lady” as Mrs. J-List calls her. Ichika is ditzy but tries her best to be a good Big Sis to the other girls. She has the lightest hair of all the girls… and the softest thighs.
Nino (二乃), a fiery tsundere who often serves the role of mother to the other girls, making sure they’re fed and their other needs are met. She’s voiced by seiyu Ayana Takatatsu, whose debut role was Ako-nee from Kiss x Sis.
Miku (三玖), voiced by upcoming voice actress Miku Itou, is shy and has a great pouting face. She’s always got headphones around her neck so we can tell her apart from the other girls. Will she be the one to win the “waifu wars”?
Yotsuba (四葉), perhaps the dumbest of the five sisters. She’s voiced by Ayane Sakura, who provided the voice of Iroha in Oregairu. Yotsuba always wears a green ribbon in her hair… unless she’s impersonating one of her other sisters, of course.
Itsuki (五月), the fifth sister, who’s voiced by fan-favorite Inori Minase, the voice of Rem from Re:Zero, which is an automatic win in my book.
How Do Quintuplets Handle Older/Younger Sister Roles?
From the Japanese point of view, compared with the “horizontal” societies (横の社会) like the U.S. in which everyone is potentially equal to each other depending on their own efforts, Japan is a “vertical” society (縦の社会) in which your age or seniority in a company or organization gives you status concerning others. In its simplest form, this basically means people are aware of their relationship to others as being senior (senpai), on the same level (doukyu/douki), or junior (kouhai), and alter their speech slightly to be more formal or informal appropriately. While most of us might view five babies born at the same time to be “the same age,” in a country where relationships are “vertical” like Japan, it’s important for siblings to know their relationship with each other (though sisters wouldn’t ever user polite or formal language with each other).
This question was first introduced to anime fans in Lucky Star, when Kagami explains even though she’s only a few minutes older than her twin sister Tsukasa, she always feels compelled to work hard to provide proper guidance for her younger sister, “onee-san-rashiku” (“as a proper older sister should”). And in Quintessential Quintuplets, we see that Ichika considers herself responsible for the welfare of her sisters, taking on hard modeling jobs to provide for the family.
According to current Japanese family registry law, the first baby to be born when there are multiple births is officially recorded as being older than siblings born later. This is a Western idea going back to ancient Rome that Japan introduced during the Meiji Period. The old Japanese way was for the last baby to be born to be considered the oldest since they were the farthest inside the mother during gestation. Japan (and Korea) also used to count a baby as being one year old when they were born, and occasionally there’ll be confusion about how old an elderly person actually is because Japan switched to the Western system only in the last century.
Quintessential Quintuplets Can Teach You Musical Notation!
Although she insists she’s not an anime fan, Mrs. J-List ends up watching a lot of series with me, and when the stories are interesting to her, she starts bugging me to watch the next episode. The official title of the second season is 五等分の花嫁∬ Gotoubun no Hanayome ∬, and my wife asked why the musical notation “fortissimo” was used in the title. (It’s used to denote increasing loudness in musical notation.) Japanese are often a lot more musically inclined than the average American, with more knowledge of Western musical history. My wife and both of our kids are all skilled musicians, while I can barely play the kazoo.
Who Will Win the Waifu Wars?
Which quintuplet do you think will win the Waifu Wars? With each new episode, I keep changing the girl I think is going to win in the end. Tell us which girl you’re supporting below, or share them with us on Twitter!
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