「鶏鳴狗盗」 (Keimeikutou)
“Tricks Both Mongrel and Fowl”

Looking back at the preview and the episode title, it should’ve seemed obvious that Dotsuku wouldn’t make it out of Episode 2 alive. After Inounoshishi had the 1st episode’s spotlight only to be turned into one of Usagi’s zombies, Dotsuku was destined to be the next to go. It didn’t help that in this episode, we get a flashback from him, and a line about how he can’t be killed by the poison because his power can work to eradicate it. But man, I was still taken by complete surprise by how he died! I only saw it coming a few seconds before Niwatori smashed his head, but it was one of those shocking “oh crap!” moments that had me bursting out in laughter at how quickly she killed him as soon as she realized how much power his fang’s strength-enhancement poison gave her.

What got me was how easily I bought into the idea that Dotsuku and Niwatori would be the power duo to possibly fight against Usagi’s zombie army. Dotsuku had the strength and the neat poison powers, and Niwatori was an expert at tracking with the ability to see through the eyes of birds she can control. There was also a sense of chemistry where Niwatori did such a good job at acting inexperienced and oblivious that it seemed like she could eventually cause Dotsuku to let his guard down more gradually over time. He did let his guard down, but out of the idea that if he makes her uncontrollably strong, she’d be an effective gambit against Usagi’s slowly building army. Additionally, Niwatori’s quirky dialog also built onto this chemistry with her interest in bothering Dotsuku by examining the phrasing in “We ran through those mountains full of rabbit, we fished in those rivers full of carp”. It was such as Isin moment that it seemed like a cute duo that might just work out. Though it was highly likely that Niwatori planned to kill him from the start, and was looking out for number 1 more closely, choosing to align herself with Dotsuku to use his poison against him and the other combatants. It was just such a clever trick that it stunned me when she took him out.

Aside from their brief partnership, the bond between Shuryuu and Nezumi is explored further as they ended up tagging along with each other in a bid to hide out, and find a way to stop the game. Not only do we learn that Shuryuu rigged the explosives underneath the floor knowing that there was someone who was planning on killing everyone before the game began, but that she’s a master negotiator who has been powerful enough to broker cease-fires, end wars, and mend diplomatic ties. The fear that she might be able to end the game becomes a major concern for Dotsuku, but it’s hard to gauge her or Nezumi’s motives in the game. How exactly does she want to end the game? Does she have plans in mind for Nezumi? And what’s Nezumi’s angle in all of this? Niwatori has the same issue as Inounoshishi with recognizing who he is. Whether this means Nezumi’s power is in amnesia or tinkering with memories is all speculation, but him and Shuryuu are easily the most mysterious characters so far.

The climax of this episode builds up the momentum towards some intense encounters for the next one. After his battle with the turnstyle, Uuma is horrified to find that negotiation and pacifism is no longer on the table for Ushii as he picks a fight at the train station. In addition, Niwatori’s crows are ascending on the zombified Inounoshishi as she gets ready to make full use of Dotsuku’s power-up. The title of the episode and preview are waving a massive death flag for Niwatori, but I have a feeling lighting won’t strike twice with the show giving away its secrets. At first, I was wondering if Inounoshishi’s stabbing at the end of the premiere would be where the series peaked with it’s shock factor, but the last half of this episode made it loud and clear that this isn’t the last time Juuni Taisen tries to pull the rug out from under us. The next episode can’t come soon enough!

ED Sequence

ED: 「化身の獣」 (Keshin no Kemono) by Do As Infinity



  1. I’m actually kinda sad that Uuma is most probably going to die. He actually seemed a genuine nice guy in this episode. Well, as far as you can be nice without being a complete doormat in this bloodthirsty situation. But still, nice. Certainly nothing about him rang any alarm bells in the way everyone else has so far. And also, the ticket barrier struggles. I can kinda sympathise(the number of times I’ve swiped a card only for the stupid thing to close before I can get through….)

    As far as Niwatori went, I was half expecting her to do something more along the lines of Kushida from Classroom of the Elite (go super dark and scary for a second before switching back) but holy wow, I was also surprised with how she did kill him.

    An amnesia ability where Nezumi is concerned seems likely considering that it’s not only Ino and Niwatori who seem to recognise him, but Dokutsu too. Though, I wonder about that because I feel like his sleepiness is related to his abilities in some way, but I can’t seem to figure out how that’d work with a memory-based ability. I guess we just have to wait and see.

    1. I did feel bad for Uuma since he seemed eager to join the pacifist group and attempt to see if Ushii would join him, given his interest in Shuryuu’s proposal. It was sad to see the look on his face turned bleak when he realized Ushii was preparing to kill him.

      I understand the idea that Niwatori would end up putting on a slasher face and going crazy given that most of the edgier anime have at least that one girl that acts timid only to be completely bonkers, but it was surprising that she ended up killing Dotsuku shortly after gaining the powers without much fanfare or theatrics. It was swift without any time for Dotsuku to process what was about to happen.

      The more people try to hone in on Nezumi’s sleep cycle and the inkling that they might know him, it gives credence to the idea that his sleeping and their amnesia would be interlinked with one another.

  2. I still don’t understand how the Rooster killed the Doggo. By grabbing his face?

    I really hope they don’t go reverse zodiac chronology for each of their time of deaths. That would make this show sooooo booooringggg. That would also make the mouse win. Again. The mouse has been winning everything since the commencement of story-telling.

    Little Tangerine
    1. She crushed his face after he enhanced her strength, he basically gave her bloodlust she either A: couldn’t control or B:knew if she played weak he would buff her so she has better chance of winning.

      Also this is battle royale anime, it isn’t suppose to have a story, 12 characters show off and die, one remains and wins, this is the definition of battle royale. You are literally like 50th person i see talking about this anime being boring and predictable, who cares? It’s an bloody action anime, probably a twist coming at the end, you enjoy it not savor it.

    2. From what I gathered, it was the combination of her grabbing his face hard enough to crush it and her smashing his head against the wall.

      I want to give the show the benefit of the doubt that the ending credits order and the previews are going to be misleading from here on out, but I’d be disappointed if it’s going to go single-file along with whoever is in the credits or whoever gets the preview. I’m enjoying the show and story itself, but it would cheapen it if every episode gave away who was going to die every time.

      1. Well, the ending order is simply the Chinese Zodiac order which is what this is based on.
        Doubt the author would follow it.

        Side note:
        I do think the snake/dragon would come back alive somehow though.

      2. True, it’d give away everything too soon for the writer to follow the Chinese zodiac’s order in the deaths to come.

        Part of me does think Snake might not be as dead as we think because the characters were saying that Snake & Dragon worked as a group, and Dragon seems very confident. If Usagi’s power is controlling his zombies as well, it might be too late, but if Snake would be able to pretend to go along with Usagi’s instructions, I could see him being able to regenerate a head or operate while his head is detached, where he could regenerate another body like a snake shedding its skin.

  3. Well episode 1 has set a pattern, once Inoushishi was confirmed dead, with Rabbit digging her Innards for the jewel, then started showing spotlight of Dotsuku, like you Choya I knew he was dead, but how was what kept me intrigued and oh boy! Can we all give Niwatori a freaking standing ovation.

    She played her cards freaking smart, from start to finish, I was laughing my arse off right from the get go, because it seemed like a joke as Dotsuku rightly said to have someone like her in the tournament, on the chances she was probably forced in. I confirmed my suspicion about her pulling the rug right from under dog, was when he asked her to share information about anyone else she knew to which she responded ” I hardly know anyone” add that to her body language was a tell tell.

    Given every week someone dies, fingers crossed Chicken survives the upcoming week.

    1. I’m crossing my fingers that Chicken is able to avoid the death flags that have been thrown her way. It’d be neat if she got far given how crafty she was to take the gamble that Dog would lower his guard that early AND give her a power boost. She’d be a fun character to follow, and it’d make sure to end the pattern that the ones who are given the most screentime/flashbacks are killed off. Monkey did say that everyone involved was experienced and skilled, so to see Dog fall hook, line, and sinker for her perceived inexperience was a riot, especially since she didn’t even have to give him the same amount of information that was pouring out of his mouth.

  4. Okay, calling it now;

    Show Spoiler ▼

      1. Noticed that after I posted. Only reason that I can think of is that the ED order is for the Zodiac. Still think I’m correct as a whole, except for that little tidbit. Let’s hope the series is slightly more unpredictable.

    1. Yeah, all Dog had to do was hide somewhere, or do what the last contest’s Boar did by hiding out in a different country. He had all the tools there to ride it out, but he took the bait right away. Chicken probably liked her odds of getting rid of the one person who neutralized their poison, and went with it.

    1. I’m hoping Tori is able to get far in the contest too, and that the next title is a red herring to mislead us into focusing so much on Tori that someone else ends up on the chopping block instead.

      Show Spoiler ▼

      I had to. I’m glad if anything that Juuni Taisen has some equal opportunity fanservice with Usagi and Tori so that there’s a little bit of something for everyone.


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