Getting Your Gambling Freak On! – Kakegurui Review

Getting Your Gambling Freak On! – Kakegurui Review

The other day I finally got around to watching Kakegurui, the Netflix Original that caused grief and rage from other members of BAYOG. At its heart, I find Kakegurui to be a grand show in a similar vein to most of my high points. More than anything it gives me hope that just because something falls under our internal category of a “Nick Show” does not mean it’s garbage. Kakegurui lacks deadpan and only has some moments of ecchi, but its real draw is the sheer insanity of its setting and its even more insane characters. With all of this, there’s no surprise I marathoned through this in a day, even dubbed.

Kakegurui Jabami Cat
Things for r/Animenocontext

Kakegurui starts out with our normal male protag, Ryota Suzui, as he loses to the class bully/ruler, Mary Saotome. They are students of Hyakkaou Academy, a prestigious school with gambling for large (and I really mean large) sums of money being legal and even encouraged. In this school of 3,000, the bottom 100 in terms of donations are dropped to a ranking referred to as “House Pets” with females being referred to as “Mittens” and males being referred to as “Fido.” Ryota is treated like dirt, as are all house pets, per the school rules. This changes when transfer student Ryūko Matoi Yumeko Jabami arrives to challenge this unfair school system and it’s student council president, Satsuki Kiryūin Kirari Momobami. In all seriousness, the show gets no where near as insane as Kill La Kill, but it does get pretty insane.

Kakegurui Jabami Excited

In her first game against Mary, she casually begins dropping large sums of money (going so far as to waging ¥1,000,000 (~89,587.07) even though she knows Mary was cheating and begins to show her true insanity. She proceeds to literally get off on the thrill and rush of such a gamble, screaming her desire to get her gambling freak on. After Yumeko deftly defeats Mary and rescues Ryota from house pet status, she proceeds to knock out a vast number of the wealthy and powerful Student Council members, sometimes winning, sometimes losing but always displaying a cavalier disregard to her own well being, betting her finger and toenails being ripped from her, playing a few rounds of Russian Roulette, and even betting her freedom as a human being. All the while, she demonstrates a rather enthusiastic amount of excitement and pleasure from such gambles, typically to the horror and confusion of her opponents.

Kakegurui Student Council

Finally, she sets off against the student council president and it falls to Ryota to win or lose the final match that will determine which of the two gambling crazy ladies will be forced to depart, never to return to Hyakkaou Academy. Finally succumbing to Yumeko Jabani’s infectious insanity, he then opts to gamble the fate of this woman he had become enamored with, much to Yumeko’s glee and delight. And so he chooses the one possible card and option that will tie, resulting in both women to remain at Hyakkou.

Kakegurui Jabami

The show ends with such an interesting follow-up, leaving many options for a season 2 (which has been confirmed). The animation was on point (and Yumeko is really, REALLY, REALLY well drawn) and the intro “Deal with the devil” is so hyper and catchy I randomly start humming it every now and then. Overall I’ve tried to not go into so much detail as I can only recommend watching the show to see the crazy thrill that is Kakegurui. I know many people had issues with how Netflix was handling this show and many of its other properties, but having basically waited a year to watch it paid off as I was able to really enjoy the show with no hang ups or issues to impede my enjoyment. Hopefully you too enjoy the show but if not that’s cool too, I don’t judge. Least not too much.

2 Replies to “Getting Your Gambling Freak On! – Kakegurui Review”

  1. I just couldn’t get into this one. It is on my list of shows to try again at some point when I might be in a more receptive frame of mind, but I honestly found the first episode so over the top I just couldn’t get into the characters or the premise.
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the series.

    1. Sorry you felt that way, I personally have a thing for the insane characters and may or may not have a gambling problem so it resonated with me pretty uniquely. I can definitely see how its rather extra for some people though.

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