Tuesday, August 11, 2020

#IReadsYou Review: WE NEVER LEARN Volume 9


MANGAKA: Taishi Tsutsui
TRANSLATION: Camellia Nieh
LETTERS: Erika Terriquez, Snir Aharon
EDITORS: John Bae; David Brothers
ISBN: 978-1-9747-0951-1; paperback (April 2020); Rated “T+” for “Teen Plus”
192pp, B&W, $9.99 U.S., $12.99 CAN, £6.99 U.K.

We Never Learn is a Japanese shonen manga series written and illustrated by Taishi Tsutsui.  It began serialization in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in February 2017.  VIZ Media has been publishing an English-language edition of the manga as a paperback graphic novel series under its “Shonen Jump” imprint since December 2018.

We Never Learn focuses on Nariyuki Yuiga, a high school senior who comes from an impoverished family.  He is eager to secure a full scholarship, known as “the Special VIP Recommendation,” to college before he graduates.  His principal agrees to give him the scholarship, but there is one stipulation.  Yuiga must tutor the three smartest girls in school:  Rizu Ogata, Fumino Furuhashi, and, Uruka Takemoto, so that they can get into their target colleges.  However, each girl wants to focus on a subject area in which she is practically an utter failure!

As We Never Learn, Vol. 9 (“The Flow of [ X ] Never End...”; Chapter 70 to 78) opens, Yuiga and Ogata are going to have a study session, but find that study hall is packed with students.  Ogata comes up with idea of using the empty biology lab, but it's supposedly haunted.  When evidence of an actual haunting manifests, Yuiga is determined that the easily frightened Ogata not see the haunting – even if he has to act inappropriately to keep her from doing so.

Then, the teacher, Mafuyu Kirisu, is substituting in a home economics class, but Kirisu is bad at cooking on a whole new level.  When Yuiga attempts to help her with her cooking, the kitchen becomes a place of inappropriate behavior.  Plus, Uruka gets some life-changing news that may affect her relationship with Yuiga.  Plus, what happens when Yuiga gets a hold of the wrong gift bag.

THE LOWDOWN:  The We Never Learn manga blends academics and teen romance, being a kind of high school comic romp and romance.  Like the Nisekoi: False Love manga, We Never Learn features a boy with several girls from which to choose.

We Never Learn Graphic Novel Volume 9 does not offer any story arcs, rather, it is a collection of single-chapter episodes of comic situations.  We Never Learn is a sitcom of a thousand situations, and most of them are quite funny.  Even without a multi-chapter story in Vol. 9, creator Taishi Tsutsui manages to drop a bombshell that will shape the overall narrative moving forward.  Translator Camellia Nieh once again does stellar work in bringing out the funny in this delightful series that seems to have as close to a perfect English-language translation of a manga comedy that we can get.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of shonen high school comedies will want to learn about the Shonen Jump title, We Never Learn.

9 out of 10

Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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