Let’s Watch: Kakegurui — Episode 2

Card games have never been so sexy.

Last week on Kakegurui (which I’ll now just be calling Compulsive Gambler aside from when I title these posts), we got introduced to this season’s best girl and she’s best girl because of how fucking psychotic she is on the battlefield. Just look up this show on Youtube and you’ll see everyone falling in love with Jabami whilst posting her crazy faces as their thumbnail image.

Anyways, I was a little iffy in regards to whether or not I wanted to do a Let’s Watch of this show considering how I ended up abandoning Tsuki ga Kirei and Rage of Bahamut: Virgin Soul last season, and I think dropping an anime you’re dedicated to episodically blogging is one of the worst things you can do as a writer. It also doesn’t help that this show is owned by Netflix, which means that not many people are going to be watching it as it airs and I could get in real trouble for participating in illegal habits. However, I put that mindset to rest when a ton of Youtubers decided to say “fuck it” without any repercussions whatsoever, and none of the big anime guys care enough about this blog to call me out on it, so I decided to go “fuck it” as well.

And speaking of those Youtubers, remember how I said before that nobody I knew seemed to be looking forward to this show? Turns out I was wrong. There was a fucking ton of people who were looking forward to the anime outside my circles, and while it wasn’t that high on the pre-popularity charts, it’s now one of the most popular anime of the season despite its Netflix status. So if the show is popular and I like said popular show, it seems like a missed opportunity to not talk about it.

I wanted to continue this format on Youtube, but I’m sure most of you guys have noticed that my recent Re: Creators post got taken down because apparently showing any sort of clips, even with the audio removed, is not considered fair use. Which I call obvious bullshit on. The intro/ending music maybe, but I’m sure adding reactions and such to a few select mute clips should be protected, especially since most anime Youtubers do far worse than me in regards to that. However, my channel isn’t big enough to even bother fighting those sort of claims, so I’m just going to have to eat the loss for now and do what I’ve always done. I will try to figure out some way to upload anime-related stuff on Youtube sometime later. But for now, we’re going with the old format on this.

Yeah I’m bummed, but what can you do? Anyways, let’s start this thing. Episode 2 ready and go.

****

I’m singing in the rain. Just singing in the rain.

First name basis, huh? So what does the fandom usually refer to Jabami by anyways? Her first name or her last name?

Wow, this school is merciless. Just one little slip-up and you’re hated forever. Guess that’s what happens when you base all your prestige on gambling.

I’ve said this before, but this opening is really fun to watch. Apparently it was made by Sayo Yamamoto, and man does it really show. Love the visual style and I love the seductive voice the singer is using here. Also I’m kinda pumped to see all these crazy girls that are introduced in it, kinda like how every time I watch a Danganronpa opening, I wanna know which anime stereotype this character is parodying.

Man, I am so glad I never went to this school. I absolutely suck at gambling. Every time I played one of those JRPGs that had gambling as a side quest, I’d always check if there was a way to cheese it on the Internet.

Of course this anime would pull the old “all powerful student council” trope

Really? Those are the only dog names in this academy? Guess they put all their creative thinking into setting up this convoluted system.

Momobi Kirari aka the Final Boss

I like how this system is setup so that there are distinct boss characters that Jabami is eventually going to have to defeat. And man, there sure are a lot of them. I wonder if she’s going to play against one each episode?

Oh boy. She’s going crazy again.

Girl with a distinct design. Obviously an important character.

Of course she’s a student council member.

Hahaha, I love how that girl (whose name is Sumerago Itsuki) seemingly just teleported next to our main duo as if she heard them talking from the second floor. And they don’t even bother to show animation of the introduction for a few seconds as if to say, you know who this is and what she’s going to do. Why should we bother animating her jumping next to them from the second floor? Which she so obviously did because there’s no way she could have gotten from her table to their table that fast given how she was doing this just twenty seconds ago.

Looks like we’re going to see some redemption in Saotome in the near future.

Aw yeah. Time for the main event to start.

Double Card Memory. Seems like a card matching game based on how they describe it.

Oh you liar.

Oh right, I forgot.

In other words, I’ll be glad to make you owe me before we even start the game.

Hahaha. Please buy our brand of cards. We’ve got free Jokers included.

Alright, let’s do this.

I’ve got to agree with Suzui. This game is pretty simple in theory, but man is that a lot of memorization in practice. We’re talking about 104 cards here. You’d be better off learning ten vocabulary words.

Man these girls do not fuck around.

Oh yeah, that’s very true.

And of course, Itsuki takes the lead. Which means Jabami is going to pull out some Ultimate Bullshit any second now.

She lost? Wow, didn’t see that coming.

Is she suggesting that Itsuki cheated or something? Wouldn’t surprise me, but I don’t see how that’s possible with this particular game.

Dear lord, the fetishes this show can come up with.

So Itsuki has a habit of collecting fingernails and when you’re in debt to her, you’ve got to remove them Higurashi-style and add them to her own private collection. That’s pretty fucked up, but we all like these girls a little crazy, don’t we?

And another memetic image is born.

Really? I figured it’d be more of a common thing around this crazy-ass school.

Oh wow. I mean we all kinda figured she was cheating, but that is a very creative way of pulling the wool over your opponent. Even if they did figure out that you were using heat to warp card patterns so that you’d recognize which cards were which, it’s really hard to turn that knowledge to your advantage if you don’t have the eyes and training necessary to spot those sort of minute differences. And let’s not even get into the amount of memorization required. Forget calling it out. You’d need someone who’s also familiar with that technique in order to believe you.

Man, I really like this show’s usage of visuals.

Zawa Zawa Zawa.

And she wins in the first round. The female version of the Ultimate Bullshit is a mighty thing indeed.

Okay, I think I’ve got the formula down for the majority of this show’s matches. Jabami sacrifices one game in order to learn her opponent’s tricks and make them overconfident, only to turn their hope into despair when she crushes them in an unexpected comeback. And of course, she’s only going to play against big-wigs because normal students can’t possibly compete with her. She really is related to Komaeda. I just know it.

Of course that was an act. This woman is the devil.

I just know a lot of you guys are getting boners from this dialogue right about now. “Oh yeah. Worship me fanboys. Drool all over my yandere eyes!”

Suddenly the rainy weather at the beginning of the episode makes a lot more sense.

Man these memetic images are on fire, aren’t they?

Bringing an overconfident woman to tears. Serves that bitch right as far as I’m concerned.

Looks like the student council really is going to be the main antagonistic force of this show. So we’ve got a star-eyed girl, a girl with an eyepatch, a girl who has her eyes closed, the token kiddy character, the token male character who also seems to be the smart guy, a masked girl, whoever this chick is, and the leader. They all look fun, and if Itsuki really is small-fry compared to them, I definitely look forward to seeing what they bring. It’s like a mostly female high school version of the bosses in those Yakuza 0 mini games.

You know, I wouldn’t mind having Jabami as a friend, but I’m not really sure how much I could talk to her when it comes to her bad habits.

And Saotome is put even further into debt.

The end.

****

Alright, so that was the second episode of Compulsive Gambler, and I really enjoyed that. Like I said before, it’s not a show you really watch if you want a mind-blowing story or the like. But as pure camp goes, it’s pretty damn engaging. Visuals are still good. I love the life the background characters bring. All the important members of the cast are hilariously crazy with Suzui serving as a good means of grounding that craziness into something resembling reality, even though he’s pretty unimportant plot-wise. And I like how whether they’re playing fair or cheating, there’s real strategy being put into these games so you can see how they win whilst being impressed by it.

I’m not too big on Jabami absolutely owning her opponent once she sacrifices a game to figure out the tricks, so hopefully they don’t utilize that formula too much. And I’d really like some of these later opponents to get more development than just a psychopath who relies too much on her family’s prestige to come out on top. But those are all minor complaints in the grand scheme of things. As long as this show continues to deliver on this level of execution, it doesn’t need to be anything more than a fun time. I know that’s a tall task to ask for any show in general, but that isn’t going to stop me from demanding consistent quality.

Anyways, that’s all from me today. Like the post if you enjoy, subscribe to my blog if you want to keep up with these quickly, donate a dollar a month to my Patreon if you want to help me with hosting fees and such, and look forward to more of my content in the near future.

3 responses to “Let’s Watch: Kakegurui — Episode 2

  1. I’m curious. Based on your captions I assume that you haven’t read the manga yet? 😉

    Because it contains one (absolutely understandable) misconception where a seemingly typical trope is going to be turned upside-down.

    • If I’m going to read a manga, it’s going to be a hentai. Don’t really care for it as a medium, and I certainly am not going to read it if an anime adaptation comes out, because I don’t see the appeal in watching a show that I already know the story to.

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