Having transferred schools all her life, Chihiro Watanuki has never had any close friends. When she learns that her family will be settling into their new place for years to come, she's intent on making friends at her new school. The first person she meets at school is Yuuji Yugami, who helps her find a spot in the school's bike lot to park her bicycle. To her surprise, she's put into the same class as Yugami and even ends up sitting next to him. Maybe she's already made her first friend at school!
...Or not. Those thoughts are promptly dashed, as Chihiro quickly finds out how much of an oddball Yugami is. While he's The Ace pitcher of the baseball club and is a good student to boot, he's actually isolated by the rest of the class and doesn't get along well with his teammates. Surprisingly, none of this fazes Yugami one bit because he has no intention of making friends. Despite being warned by her classmates to not associate with him, Chihiro constantly finds herself interacting with Yugami and quickly gets pulled into his weird life. As it turns out, even though he's troublesome to deal with, Yugami ends up helping Chihiro along the way as she struggles to make friends.
Yugami-kun ni wa Tomodachi ga Inai (Yugami Doesn't Have Any Friends) is an ongoing 2012 Slice of Life comedy manga by Jun Sakura. Initially published in Shonen Sunday S, the manga eventually moved to Weekly Shonen Sunday, where it is published on a monthly basis. There are currently six volumes released as of February 2015.
A-1 Pictures animated two 30-second commercials to promote the series, which you can watch here and here. A limited edition of volume 6 also came bundled with a drama CD.
Not to be confused with a series where the protagonist doesn't have many friends.
- A Day in the Limelight: Yaegashi in his introduction.
- After-School Cleaning Duty: Yugami and Chihiro get this as punishment for a week together.
- Always in Class One: Yugami, Chihiro, and Kuzumi are all in class 2-A.
- Analogy Backfire: In chapter 2, Yugami compares Chihiro to bread, saying that she can "renew" herself just like the bean-curry bread and in turn she'll be able to make friends. The problem? She's only been so hesitant until now because that is specifically not her forte. Chihiro, as it turns out, doesn't like the taste of bean-curry bread.
- Bait-and-Switch Comment: In Chapter 42, Yugami is told to confess his true feelings for Chihiro, since everyone thinks they're a couple. He starts off saying he's always noticing her, before criticizing her for always repeating the same mistakes. It's then subverted when he also compliments her for never giving up despite this.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: Despite Yugami not closing the window when she asks him to and classmates telling her not to associate with him, Chihiro persists in trying to communicate with Yugami because he helped her the second she arrived at school and this leaves an impression on her.
- Bishie Sparkle: A Bishounen version of Yugami appears in the background as Chihiro reads Fujisawa's Love Letter to Yugami.
- Blah Blah Blah: When Yugami rambles on for too long, Kadota tunes him out. The same thing happens when Chihiro's mother blabbers away about Yugami missing his perfect (and no-hit/no-run) game, and he's on the receiving end of it.
- Boy Meets Girl: Friendless girl who just wants to make friends meets friendless boy who doesn't want friends. Friendless girl ends up sitting next to friendless boy in class. Cue hilarity.
- Broken Pedestal: Fujisawa is crushed when she realizes Yugami is actually a blunt, somewhat egocentric loner and not the Nice Guy she'd envisioned. It's also discussed by Yugami.
Yugami: If you try to talk to a delusional girl drowned in her fantasy, the end result is tragedy!
- Can't Live With Them, Can't Live Without Them: How the baseball team feels about Yugami. On one hand, most of its members can't stand him, but they rely heavily on him to win due to Yugami being their ace.
- Class Trip: To Kyoto!
- Commonality Connection: Surprisingly, Chihiro and Yugami both find Heiraku funny, but while Chihiro is a more casual listener, Yugami goes all out and is a very devout fan.
- Conveniently Seated: Yugami gets the window seat in the very back row. Chihiro is conveniently assigned to the vacant space beside him in Chapter 1.
- And as if to reflect the series' title, the seating arrangement in chapter 3 shows us that before Chihiro transferred in, Yugami sat in the back row all by himself. Yes, Yugami is the frowning blob person.
- Crowd Chant: During the baseball game between Amagi and Kamihoshi, Yugami's classmates all start chanting his name to cheer him on in the final inning.
- Date Peepers: Chihiro, Kadota, and Kuzumi during Yugami and Fujisawa's date.
- Death Glare: Yugami delivers one to Chihiro from time to time. Just look.
- Easily Overheard Conversation: Subverted. The girls are telling Chihiro how weird Yugami is while he's seated right next to them, but he can't hear them because he's too engrossed in listening to rakugo at the time.
- Eating Lunch Alone: Chihiro does this unwillingly while Yugami purposely invokes this. He's really displeased when he realizes Chihiro is eating lunch in the seat beside him.
- Exposition Cut: This is how Yugami's backstory with Uchiyamada is told.
- Used again when Chihiro asks Yugami why Kadota was the one to reject Fujisawa instead of him.
- Figure It Out Yourself: When Yugami gives her bean curry bread in Chapter 2, Chihiro asks him why. This is more or less how he responds. Immediately subverted when he's completely dissatisfied with her answer and tells her the reason.
- Friendship Denial: Whenever anyone is asked if they're friends with Yugami, this is the response. Likewise, Yugami will answer in the same way.
- Friendship Moment: Despite the fact that both Yugami and Chihiro will deny that they're friends, they often show that they care about each other. Best exemplified in the school trip arc, when he rushes to her after she falls off a cliff and when she cries after he goes missing in the forest.
- Go Mad from the Isolation: Chihiro thinks being rejected by the rest of the class will cause her psychological damage. Yugami clearly doesn't agree.
- High School
- I Have Just One Thing to Say: Yugami unintentionally does this to Chihiro in Chapter 3. He goes on a mini-rant identifying the reason she's forgotten by their classmates until he gets cut off before he can finish. When Yugami returns after the inning to finish his speech, Chihiro's already gone home and he thinks she's the one who left him hanging. The next day at school, Yugami tacks on the rest of his speech to her and we see that his words were meant to encourage Chihiro, not dishearten her.
- Identical Panel Gag: Used extensively.
- Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Each chapter title has a regular naming pattern of "Yugami-kun doesn't [verb]."
- Imagine Spot: Kadota and Yugami imagine what it would be like if Yugami dated Fujisawa, only for Yugami to imagine the relationship going to hell because he's too different from her expectations.
- Incredibly Lame Fun: Some of the things Yugami did as a kid can be deemed as this.
- Love Letter: Yugami gets one from Fujisawa but he's not flattered by the contents of the letter.
- Love Letter Lunacy: Yugami getting a love letter? You'd be kidding yourself if you didn't expect anything but more antics to ensue.
- Happens again when Yugami hands one to Chihiro. It takes her a while to realize it's a love letter, and then a bit longer to find out that it wasn't written by him, but Hayashiyama.
- Milholland Relationship Moment: Chihiro is afraid Yugami is still mad at her over her mom opening up fresh wounds by blabbering away to him about missing his perfect game and no-hitter/shutout. By the time Chihiro apologizes to him the next day, he's already gotten over it.
- Mistaken for Romance: In later chapters Chihiro and Yugami's Odd Friendship and apparent closeness has several characters think they're an item.
- Not What It Looks Like: When Chihiro is seen crying after watching a rakugou performance with Yugami, Kadota and Hayashiyama spot them, thinking that they went on a date and he made her cry. Turns out that he was also crying - both of them were so moved by the performance that it brought them to tears.
- Opposites Attract: A (so far) platonic/non-romantic example in Yugami and Chihiro. Yugami is hyper-competent, extremely self-sufficient, and doesn't want or need friends. His blunt personality also drives everyone away from him. Compare Chihiro, who is very ordinary with no special talents, has a tendency to rely on others, and really wants to make friends. She often doesn't speak her mind, afraid of offending others. Despite their differences, Chihiro talks to Yugami a lot even though everybody else continues to ignore him and conversely, Yugami unwittingly establishes a connection of sorts with someone in his class, even if he likes being alone.
- P.O.V. Boy, Poster Girl: Gender Inverted with Yugami and Chihiro. Yugami is the series' poster boy while Chihiro is the viewpoint character.
- The Power of Trust: Played with. Yugami seems to avert this completely as he aims to strike out every batter in the game against Amagi because he can't trust his teammates to make defensive plays if the ball gets hit, despite this being more taxing on him, the pitcher. Naturally, this angers Kadota, who believes he should trust his teammates instead of trying to win the game on his own. On the other hand, Shigehara believes that Yugami doesn't completely have no faith in them — just that he mostly doesn't trust them. At the very least, Yugami seems to trust Kadota's batting skills.
Yugami: Listen, Kadota... I would've trusted them if they were good. But I would never trust you blindly without any basis. Giving you my trust when you actually suck wouldn't benefit me. I'm not like The Captain! If he's told to trust someone, I bet he'd actually go ahead and do so! I'm definitely not that kind of guy! If you ask me to trust you, then show me decent skill and real data to back it up! If I trusted you without those and then we lost, I'd regret it forever!
- Relationship Ceiling: A non-romantic example and somewhat invoked by Yugami, whose relationship ceiling with his classmates is stuck at floor levels because of his disinterest in establishing friendships.
- Ship Tease: Despite Yugami's disinterest in romance and Chihiro often finding him annoying, the manga has teased them a few times:
- Chapter 33 juxtaposes a situation between them with a wistful memory of his grandma about his deceased grandpa — who resembled him in appearance and behavior. The next chapter has Chihiro crying in worry when Yugami is lost and hurt in the forest.
- The school festival arc in chapters 61-62 has Chihiro blushing when Yugami puts his arm around her shoulders to steady her when they become three-legged race partners.
- Chapter 67 has Yugami inadvertently end up staying alone with Chihiro at her place, cooking a meal for her, and making her blush again when he touches her ear.
- Chapter 16 has a number of references:
- Chihiro's dream sequence is based off of Run, Melos! When she wakes up, the book is visible on her table. Perhaps fitting, because one of the novel's overarching themes is unwavering friendship.
- When Fujisawa says she wants to evolve dramatically, Chihiro says she's not a Pokémon.
- Shigehara talks about the story of Swimmy by Leo Lionni, and likens Swimmy to Yugami.
- Chapter 16 has a number of references:
- Shower of Angst: Yugami almost pitches a no hit/no run (a no hitter and a shutout) game but the opposing team gets a home run at the very end. Later, when his sister calls him down for dinner and he doesn't respond, she goes inside the bath to see him bathing with a dejected look on his face. This naturally occurs after the shock of missing a perfect game just prior to that.
- Slice of Life
- Standing in the Hall: In Chapter 3, Yugami gets this as punishment for speaking his mind in front of the teacher in addition to being late for class. Chihiro joins him too, although she didn't have to.
- Switching P.O.V.: A variation occurs in chapter 29. While Chihiro still retains her narration, much of the chapter is told from Yugami's perspective through use of a journal.
- Umbrella of Togetherness: Averted. In the second CM (loosely adapted from chapter 18), Chihiro is waiting out the rain at the bus stop when Yugami passes by with an umbrella. They make eye contact and Chihiro thinks he's going to share his umbrella with her but he walks away, sighing. ...But then Yugami returns after buying an umbrella for her. Except he didn't really buy it, because he asks her to pay him back 500 yen, the price of the umbrella.
- Welcome Episode: The first chapter follows Chihiro's first couple days at school and largely serves to introduce us to Yugami.
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