10 Reasons Why Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is Worth Watching

Modified by Sean Johnson on March 03, 2021 in

Netflix’s Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is a Japanese manga anime television series set up in Hyakkaou Private Academy. The series released in 2017 focuses on gambling (the highs and lows) in the sense that aside from gaining power and huge returns, online gambling can also lead a person insane.

The setting on Hyakkaou sees the privileged attend school activities & programs on a normal day until darkness sets. This is where the school turns into a gambling den. Students learn how to gamble, manipulate fellow gamblers, and later show what they have learned.

To spice it further, the school is divided into two classes. The elites (in gambling) on one side and the rest. After the lessons are learned, those who feel a match for the elites will go head-to-head with them as they play for real money. This is about pride, social status, and survival. Those who pass the stage will then join the elites or get to be ‘house pets’. Once a pet, the elites can use you or torture you as they wish. In short, gambling strength determines the hierarchy in this show.

Without giving much of the spoilers, let’s get to the 10 reasons why Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is worth watching.

10 Reasons Why Kakegurui

Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler, one of the Manga comic series

Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is a manga series with works from Homura Kawamoto (writer), Toru Naomura (illustrator), and Yen Press (publisher). Manga is a term used to describe Japanese illustrated novels and comics. The point here is that they are written and created in Japan. There currently exist five types of Manga and to put it plainly, they are tailored for every gender and age. The five types are;

  • Shonen – For boys (tween and teen) – Example, Naruto
  • Shojo – For girls (tween and teen) – Example, Fruit Basket
  • Seinen – For adult men aged 18+ - Example, Berserk
  • Josei – For adult women aged 18+ - Example, Midnight Secretary
  • Kodomomuke – For toddlers and kids – Example, Pokeman

The show is categorized as Shonen. To date, the show has seen the publication of seven volumes since 2014 and this would point for more to come in this series.


What can go wrong with Yasuko Kobayashi on board?

The plaudits for this show will go to the main cast, behind the scenes heads, and the publishing, editing & production team. However, besides Homura Kawamoto (writer), Toru Naomura (illustrator), and Yen Press (publisher), the renowned Yasuko Kobayashi was on board to spice up the anime script for Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler.

With close to 25 years of experience in the industry, the 52-year-old took part in making this show a success. You can never go wrong with Yasuko with her track record going way back to 1993 where she was involved with the Tokusou Robo Janperson franchise.

Other projects she has been part of include;

  • Garo: Divine Flame.
  • Kamen Rider Den-O.
  • Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters.

Females taking over?

What’s undeniable about Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is the strong female lead. While this has always been noticed in the Shonen manga where a female comes out as a protagonist and a romantic interest for the male, this comic series has seen girls taking over. It has greatly shown the equality aspect, something that was greatly lacking in such genres.

Yumeko Jabani comes out as the main protagonist and she seems a sweet, naïve, shy little girl as she joins the academy. She is eager to learn new things as she makes new friends. Gambling starts as all fun to her and this degrades her ‘social status’ among her friends. Her true colors are later revealed as she becomes this strong compulsive gambler focused on the gambling thrill. She poses a great threat to the elites as she exposes cheats and intimidates fellow gamblers. She is now just a girl whose goal is to be part of the elites!

Aside from Yumeko Jabani, the series is also filled with girls dressed in short skirts.

The strong female lead behind the anime

Netflix becoming a great anime hub

Netflix is making moves and the platform is constantly updating new TV shows from all over the world. Top US & UK shows are available for choosing and with Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler being one from Japan, the diversity aspect is something to look forward to.

The platform has also made other selections of the top-rated anime series including titles such as;

  • Sword Art.
  • Kengan Ashura.
  • Dragon’s Dogma.
  • Death Note.

Fancy another gambling anime? Netflix might just be your preferred hub!

Kakegurui Spin-off?

If you are a fan of the TV shows, then the term ‘spin-off’ is not new to you. Several great TV shows continue to build their brand and legacy by having other spin-offs. If you watched Breaking Bad, then Better Call Saul is another relatable series, Dragon Ball has Dragon Ball Z, Family Guy has The Cleveland Show, and so on.

Well, Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler has its spin-off and it’s yet another one of the manga series. Kakegurui Twin was published in 2015 and also released in Gangan Joker (sector of Square Enix, manga publisher), just like Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler. For this manga series, the focus is laid on Mary Saotome and it’s a year before Yumeko Jabani joins Hyakkaou Private Academy. Everything points to the series being transformed into anime.

Gambling ‘dark side’ shown

While it may seem all fun to gain ‘power’, ‘social status’, and ‘pride’ on the show, Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler also shows the ‘lows’ of gambling and the ‘dark side’ of it. It should be noted that gambling in Japan is prohibited except for some forms of sports betting. That’s why for this show, gambling is done in the dark and is majorly an ‘underground’ activity.

The show goes on to show how gambling can be addictive and go on to mess up your social life. For Yumeko Jabani, her wins are as equal to the losses she makes and at one time, she was a ‘house pet’. Throughout the series, we see her getting desperate to get to the elites pointing to the will of matching every gambling offer to remain afloat. This is not so positive!

Square Enix Success

Square Enix is becoming one hot cake in the film industry and for its huge success in the production of video games such as; Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy, its wings have spread to publishing.

Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler has been serialized in Gangan Joker, a sector of Square Enix and to date, it’s a major success. The show’s spin-off, Kakegurui Twins, is another major series that has had the input of Square Enix.

Other major projects that have been a success from Square Enix include;

  • Kingdom Hearts.
  • Star Ocean.

If your project has Square Enix name on it, I don’t think it’s overly optimistic to shout, ‘Mama, I made it!’.

Kakegurui, the Square Enix Success

MAPPA Studio Involvement

From its publisher to the animation studio. This time, it’s Maruyama Animation Produce Project Association (MAPPA) which is the Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler’s animation studio.

The studio has had impressive success since its inception in 2012 and several other shows released under MAPPA have been received positively. The studio focuses on animation projects and Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is among other shows/projects such as;

  • Garo: The Animation.
  • Kids on the slope.

Theme Songs set the mood

Like every slot game, the background soundtrack plays a crucial part in setting the mood. This is not different from Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler. A great selection of theme songs has been made and has complemented the high-quality visuals from the show further.

From the eerie beats, the jazz feeling, the piano chords, gaming-relatable lyrics, here are the top theme songs you will enjoy on the show;

  • Tia’s Deal with the devil – Opening theme song.
  • Yumemi Yumemite & Yumeko Jabami’s Koi no Russian Roulette – Closing theme song (Episode 9).
  • D-selections’ Lay on the line – Closing theme song (All other episodes).

A blend of Josei and Seinen?

The TV show is categorized as a Shonen manga. This is a target audience for boys who are between the age bracket of 8-18 years. However, the show is tailored in such a way that other groups can enjoy and get hooked to it.

With gambling the main plot and a bit of ‘sexual triggers’ in the show, this might be another Josei or Seinen manga.

ICYMI: Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler Season 2 aired in 2019 and it remains to be seen if a season 3 will be in the making!

Top Questions

With its huge following on the first season, some of the questions were bound to arise, and here are some of the popular ones;

What is Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler?

Kakegurui is a name translating to ‘gamble maniac’. Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is a Japanese manga animation series focused on gambling in Japan. The show features Yumeko Jabani as the protagonist who joins Hyakkaou Private Academy and gets to gamble for fun until she resorts to gambling for the thrill. The show takes us deep into the world of gambling and shows us the two sides of it where winners join an elite group elevating their social status and pride and losers joining a ‘house pet’ group. Gambling addiction is also another dark side focused on the show.

Can I stream Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler?

Yes. Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler is available for online HD streaming on Netflix

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