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Kakegurui×× – 04

「通じる女たち」 (Tsuujiru onna-tachi)
“Communicating Women”

You know, at some point in the not too distant future I’ll probably regret choosing to keep blogging Kakegurui (those Netflix subbing shenanigans are going to hurt my Wednesday night free time), but damn it’s just too hard not to say yes to this show. Crazy faces, psychological shenanigans, ever increasingly ridiculous games: Kakegurui simply has it all. Whatever the series lacks in complexity it more than makes up in Elon Musk shirt wearing attitude, and oh darling do we ever have a clash of wits quickly barrelling down the tracks.

As discussed last week Kakegurui’s structure largely remains the same across each of its games. Whatever the circumstances and crazy personalities facing off, the strategy rarely deviates from identifying the trick at work and seeing how long it takes for everyone else to recognize just how screwed they are. Conceptually bland sure—especially when Yumeko is always the one doing the discerning—but never say Kakegurui doesn’t know when to liven things up. Case in point is the “protagonist” of the recent gamble in Meari, who pretty much channelled her inner Yumeko by not only poking Miyo and Miri a new one, but getting Suzui to stick with a situation the angel on his shoulder was almost certainly saying run away from as fast as possible. Ok, maybe a bit harsh on poor Suzui (the kid is slowly coming into his own in more than one way), but it’s no lie saying the strength of this show lies with the ability of its secondary cast to make structurally similar gambles into wickedly fun experiences. Meari and Suzui may have been destined to win this game after all (kind of hard actually killing off your main girl barely four weeks in), but with adorable Runa shenanigans and faces like this does the inevitability even really matter?

Going forward though the real fun will likely not so much be the games as much as the characters involved. The new and improved Meari for example is pretty much destined to come to a second round of blows with Yumeko thanks to her deciding what she finally wants, while Kirari has foreshadowed yet more fun and games with our little gambling queen because hey, no amount of Momobami can top the crazy of this show’s titular main. And that doesn’t even touch on all the other unlikely pairings between student council members and Suzui/Meari/Yumeko likely to happen between now and then as our huge collection of antagonists is slowly whittled down to a reasonable number. Much like last season there’s an undercurrent relating to the purpose of gambling at play here, with the Momobamis and Meari/Kirari facing off using gambling as a means to an end—i.e. to control the student council presidency—while Yumeko continues enjoying the act as end in of itself. Whoever ultimately comes out on top will be the one who can look beyond simple reward and see each game for what it really is, and in this we have the best array of characters possible to watch these paradigms play themselves out.

After all with the stakes this high and attempted murder already done and out of the way, you can bet the bank the future gambles have some seriously crazy stuff in store.

 

Preview

January 30, 2019 at 11:03 pm
5 comments »
  • January 31, 2019 at 3:45 amGoodwill

    Won’t lie, I really like Runa’s “Absolute Neutrality” quirk. Has a nice ring to it and it adds another layer to the otherwise layer-less lasagna of gambling.

    Initially I was taken aback at how counting would be allowed in gambling but I guess the difference here is that at Hyakkou Academy, the house isn’t trying to win unlike most gambling establishments. For better or worse, it’s nice that the academy actually practices neutrality. Each player may try to get an upper-hand but the house itself is neutral in its dealings.

  • January 31, 2019 at 2:18 pmphil

    had not seen this anime yet but your review makes me want to check it out. I have a question about your blog. How do you avoid copyright infringement with all of the photos, names etc that you use that are from the different animes?

    • January 31, 2019 at 9:28 pmPancakes

      Someone more familiar with copyright law can probably answer better, but in short it’s covered under fair use. We are using the screencaps for comment and criticism and don’t make a profit off of them (let alone try to, we do all of this work for free) so there isn’t a reason for a company to come after us.

  • February 1, 2019 at 8:21 amMagewolf

    It seems like Netflix has pretty much killed the discussion on this show which is a shame since it has been a fun and crazy ride so far.

  • February 3, 2019 at 9:36 pmboingman

    Meari still a bully, but now on Suzui’s side. She might not only fight Yumeko for the president’s seat…

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