The penultimate episode of Kakegurui, our weekly anime gambling addiction, finds me in low spirits. With Yumeko’s triumph over Manyuda, we are going straight to a high stakes finale and will determine the fate of most our protagonist and her place in the school. Yumeko’s thirst for thrill (but not only that) let her climb the tower of the Student Council and face the de facto leader of the academy, Momobami Kirari.
Japanese Title: 人生を賭ける女
How much craziness can we witness in one episode? Sumeragi is going full Yumeko in what seems to be her only chance in achieving her ambitions. After a moment of doubt, she decides to go all or nothing, betting her life so that Yumeko can push Manyuda in betting his own life to get the choice of ‘stronger’ or ‘weaker’. Manyuda takes the bet and bets all his money (that was one bank account I would have loved to have) and his own life, a life not his own but thrusted upon him by his family. He was to become the Vice Minister of Finance and lead this country. What a glorious position for this academy’s accountant.
Yet, the Yumeko-Sumeragi alliance managed to act an Oscar-worthy performance and take the win amidst a handful of surprises. Kirari and Ririka are probably twin sisters (more on that in the Highlights and Themes & Trivia sections) because that was probably the most WTF reveal of the series.
At last, we reached the moment we have all been waiting for. Yumeko and Kirari will face each other in the last gamble of the season.
Batman: Like Yomotsuki Runa, I wasn’t expecting that. The voice changer makes a lot of sense now, but I am trying to recall if we have ever seen the President and the girl mask in the same scene before. Did she just take her place or was she the masked girl all along? Are they twin sisters? Did Ririka attend the family event while the President stayed behind? This is so confusing.
Nails: Sumeragi went full crazy this episode with a move that was both creepy and metaphorically meaningful. By pulling out her fingernails, Sumeragi essentially ripped out her previous life and placed her trust in her new ‘friend.’ She took the cue and played her part in a new era for the academy. For a person obsessed with fingernails, this was both a defiant and rebellious act.
Scared to Death: Since they didn’t cover his face, I am guessing that Manyuda is still alive? Yet, poor kid. He always wanted to be a pilot and was forced into a life he never chose. His ambitions led him to an endless race which he eventually lost. This humiliating defeat brought his and his father’s aspirations crushing down. That’s what you get for betting your life: shattered glasses and white hair.
Themes & Trivia
Too Similar: In the last scenes of the episode, we see Yumeko and Kirari next to each other and… are they too much alike or is it me? They have almost the same character design with different colors. While Yumeko plays in red and black with pink lips, the president plays in blue hues with white strikes. When she had her hair down for her act, they looked awfully similar to Yumeko’s. Now that I think about it, Yumeko JaBAMI and Kirari MomoBAMI… Sisters? NO WAY. I hope we have such a reveal in the next episode, or even better… a second season!
Strategy: This was a close gamble. Even with the explanation after the game, Yumeko could have easily lost if Manyuda had 3 Kings or 3 Aces. He couldn’t have had 3 Queens because Yumeko had changed two. Despite that, her strategy was sound. What she failed to achieve in the previous round, to have a high hand while discarding a strong pair, she did in this one by having a full in hand. She wanted to make Manyuda believe that she was going for the weakest hand and force him to bet everything on getting the choice. A choice that had to be the ‘strongest.’ Still, this was not a 100% sure win for Yumeko. Sumeragi said at one point that she had to believe in Yumeko’s hand. At first, I thought that she had such a strong ‘weak’ hand that there was no way she could lose if she got the choice. I fell into the same trap as Manyuda did. But what she needed to believe in was that a mediocre hand like three Jacks could win against a deceived Manyuda. And it did.
Bami vs Bami
I am awfully curious to see what kind of game the two Bamis will play. With all that talk about supernovas and space, I am expecting something galaxy-shattering. Something that will send shivers down our spines and have us praying to the Anime God for never becoming a gambling addict like the characters in this story. I don’t know about you, guys and girls, but I am not setting foot in a casino, ever.
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NEXT TIME: The Woman Who Gambles Compulsively (賭ケグルイの女) | Season Finale
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