Fuutarou Uesugi is an ace high school student, but leads an otherwise tough life. His standoffish personality and reclusive nature have left him friendless, and his father is debt-ridden, forcing his family to scrape by. One day during his lunch break, Uesugi argues with a female transfer student who has claimed "his seat," leading both of them to dislike each other. That same day, he is presented with a golden opportunity to clear his family's debt: a private tutoring gig for a wealthy family's daughter, with a wage of five times the market price. He accepts the proposal, but is horrified to discover that the client, Itsuki Nakano, is the girl he confronted earlier! After unsuccessfully trying to get back on Itsuki's good side, Uesugi finds out that his problems don't end there: Itsuki is actually a quintuplet, so in addition to her, he must also tutor her sisters—Miku, Yotsuba, Nino, and Ichika—who, despite the very real threat of flunking, want nothing to do with a tutor. However, his family's livelihood is on the line so Uesugi pushes on, adamant in his resolve to rid the sisters of their detest for studying and successfully lead them to graduation. [Written by MAL Rewrite]
Quintessential Quintuplets quickly qualified for harem anime of the year for its great rendition of the cute girls + comedy combo. Now while this is a pretty cheap combo deal that you can find during practically every anime season, consumers still buy into it in droves. And after seeing how expertly this anime handled the combo, I know I for one will be coming back for more in the future!
Quandaries regarding education can really throw a wrench in your future life plans. Failing can leave you in some pretty dire straits, so it’s clearly optimal to succeed. Shocking, I know. Unfortunately for our well endowed quintuplets, their beauty is matched only by their incomprehensible stupidity in practically all forms of academics. Therefore it is up to financially disadvantaged genius student Fuutarou Uesugi to tutor these hopeless rich girls and save their futures. He makes a pretty penny out of this deal, plus he gets to spend quality time with these five lovely ladies. Bonus! Of course, these siblings start off more troublesome then our protagonist could have imagined.
Quitting is not an option for Fuutarou, as he has a kawaii imouto to support, so he admirably never gives up on the girls when a lesser man would have quit ages ago…probably right after being drugged by one of them. Yes, this actually happens. The plot is pretty simplistic, yet charming. It is revealed from the beginning that Fuutarou is about to marry one of the quintuplets and is reminiscing about how they met and other sentimental mushy stuff. The whole story basically shows how each of the girls starts to fall in love with their charming tutor, while the viewer is left to ponder which one Fuutarou ends up with. I enjoyed how the anime portrayed the development of the characters’ feelings through many entertaining scenarios that left me really liking the cast. While the siblings start off pretty bratty and give Fuutarou the cold shoulder at first, the way in which this man thaws their hearts and unintentionally gets them to fall for him is very well done. And hey, they even start to improve academically! Of course they’re still failing, just…not as much!
Quantity vs. Quality, which do you prefer when it comes to characters? Normally, anime like this tend to sacrifice one in favor of the other. Here, we thankfully get both. Not only are there five lovely ladies featured for you to waifu, but they each boast their own unique designs, personalities, struggles, and more!
Quiet and bashful is Miku, the first of the siblings to really begin to connect with Fuutarou and actually start to study with him, though she still puts up quite the fight before eventually submitting. Based on what I’ve seen, Miku is the prime candidate for “best girl” in this anime, and it’s no secret why. She’s a beautiful, busty babe. She’s reserved and awkward. She isn’t too skilled in things like academics and cooking, but she always does her best. Plus she wears headphones, a fantastic fashion fad if I do say so myself.
Queued in front of her sisters at birth, Ichika is the big sis of the group. She has a rather sloppy room with her underwear and the like lying around for all to see and likes to sleep in the nude. When you also take into account her fantastic character design, she immediately becomes the sexiest of the siblings. Even Fuutarou-kun gets embarrassed by this attractive girl on occasion. She’s also trying to pursue an acting career, which is pretty neat. Top that off with her job getting in the way of school and boom! Instant character arc. I like how she presents a levelheaded and strong exterior yet keeps many insecurities quelled within her. It really makes Ichika an interesting character and not just a pretty face.
Queens are typically rich, pampered individuals who act dignified, but probably look down on the masses with contempt. Nino is sort of similar to a queen, with the one difference being that she isn’t afraid to degrade people with her words and actions straight to their faces. Especially Uesugi, who she even drugs at one point. Pretty hardcore. She’s a rebellious type who deep down is actually extremely loving and caring. Plus she’s a great cook and wouldn’t mind being the breadwinner of the family, so that should excite all the basement dwellers out there.
Quirky girls are usually fun and interesting, and Yotsuba is no exception. She’s quite energetic, athletic, and seems to excel at every physical activity known to man. Unfortunately for Uesugi-san, she’s the biggest baka of the bunch, and probably has the highest chance of outright failing school. She’s always upbeat and happy though, which is endearing.
Quizzically, there is a common rule in anime where the first girl the protagonist meets becomes the one that he ends up with. If that’s the case, then Itsuki has the best shot of ending up with Uesugi-kun. She’s a fine girl who likes to eat and looks good in glasses, but wasn’t really given any focus in the anime. She’s quite plain in the show and is overshadowed by her sisters. But who knows, maybe the manga gives her some much needed development.
Question time. Who truly is best girl? Well the good thing is that you could make a case for all of them, because they’re all completely unique from each other in many ways despite being quintuplets and each add their own exquisite flavor to the anime. However, there is one noticeable predicament the arises because of this.
Quite possibly the most glaring issue with this anime would be its visual representation of the heroines and the repercussions of this problem. So a major plot element of this show is the fact the the five girls are, well, quintuplets, and the anime makes a point of saying that it is hard to distinguish between the five of them. They occasionally wear the accessories of the others in order to trick people into thinking that they’re a different sibling. Fuutarou himself constantly struggles with determining which girl is which from time to time, which admittedly causes some humorous situations. But as I said, each girl is completely unique, which includes their voices and designs, which are easily distinguishable from each other. This makes these switcheroo scenarios not as authentic as they could be had the siblings actually resembled one another. These moments also occasionally make Fuutarou look like a complete idiot sometimes when it’s blatantly clear which sibling he’s taking to yet he thinks she’s a different one. Now I perfectly understand why the creators went with this artistic choice. It’s just more aesthetically pleasing to have a variety of designs as opposed to using the same one five times over. Plus the seiyuu are an all star bunch with a lot of talent and experience behind them, so once again, it’s just more entertaining this way as opposed to having all the girls sound the same. So in the end, I honestly can’t call this decision to make the girls so different from each other wrong because of how much it adds to the show and the characters themselves. But as I mentioned, there are some negatives that result from this too.
Quality harem anime are probably considered to be nonexistent by many in the anime community. And while I’d disagree, I have to admit that there haven’t really been any at all in recent memory. The Quintessential Quintuplets ended up ceasing that drought for me. Yes, from a technical standpoint, the anime has many flaws in several departments. But damn it, I can be biased if I want to, and I enjoyed this anime thoroughly. Of course, labeling this show as a harem anime might be a bit of a stretch…And to all of those individuals out there who may write The Quintessential Quintuplets off as generic and bland, I would suggest taking a page out of Fuutarou’s book. For when Miku and Nino had a cooking competition, Nino’s dish was more aesthetically pleasing and filled with originality and flavor, whereas Miku’s was dull and plain in comparison. Yet to Fuutarou, they both were good. Like with this scenario, just because this anime may seem standard when compared to others, I wouldn’t recommend writing it off based on preconceptions. Give this anime a try, and you may end up liking it as much, if not more, than I did.