**Written based on only watching the anime**
This pretty boy:
These are all very, very typical traits of a character who harbors an unrequited love toward some other character, except maybe the final point. "But he's so pretty!" Well, that argument doesn't matter for shit because the girl is madly in love with her crush and has no time to even glance at Yamaken.
Yamaken is a secondary character who has a crush on Shizuku, a main character in love with another main character, Haru. With Haru shamelessly hanging all over Shizuku, clearly in love with her, of course, Yamaken has no chance! Two main characters in love with each other? The secondary character who's trying to butt in has a chance of winning from zero to negative infinity.
Despite being manipulative, arrogant, and seemingly cold-hearted, Yamaken wormed a way into my heart and rooted himself there quite firmly. He caught my eye from the moment he entered the show, partially because he's handsome, but mostly because I knew he wouldn't stand a chance against Haru. That, of course, aroused my interest and I kept an eye out for him. One thing I soon realized is that he is more compatible with Shizuku. They're both study-bugs, quiet, and fairly stolid in most situations save for the ones where love is involved. They're "perfect" for each other! However, two perfectly synchronized characters' interactions are usually monotonous and uninteresting, which is probably why many people prefer HaruXShizuku over YamakenXShizuku.
So... who's better?
In a real-life situation, Haru would more than likely be seen as an obnoxious, naive, possessive, and even dangerous person (ex: ep. 10 when Haru nearly pushed Yamaken off a staircase when the latter refused to give up on Shizuku). Frankly, no one would like to have him around; don't deny it. I am a Haru-fan myself, but I admit that I would fear for my life if I had a "friend" like him. Yamaken and Shizuku would be seen as normal, studious students, except that the former would have a higher social standing than the latter. But of course, anime isn't real-life so I suppose that point is invalid here.
What I believe made Yamaken unique is that he is more compatible for Shizuku, but the creator decided to pair Shizuku with a guy who's the complete opposite of her. But wait! "Opposites attract," right? In the end, it all depends on one's own opinions~
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