In Kakegurui Twin, Mary Saotome is the newest transfer student making big waves at Hyakkaou Private Academy. In a school where gambling means everything, wealthy students have the opportunity to thrive or become indebted as house pets. No one will show mercy, and everyone is playing dirty. It’s up to the brightest students to survive and dominate the school.
The setup isn’t too different from Kakegurui which makes it feel a bit repetitive. It’s similar in the fact a new student saves a house pet and takes them along to conquer the school through gambling, except Kakegurui Twin doesn’t have enough time to develop the characters or the scenes. The first episode features an extensive summary of important events. If perhaps I had watched the events happen, I’d care for Mary and her reunited classmate, Tsuzura Hanatemari. She’s a sweet, timid girl who idolizes Mary as her savior. Their dynamic feels fresh and perfect for a gambling duo. I just wished we could have watched their reunion unfold. Due to the summary, I barely understood their motivations or why they chose to stick together. Their relationship felt forced for the first couple of episodes for the sake of moving the plot.
Gambling is the life of this anime.
Mary Satome is an interesting character who grows on you because she’s not a heroic type. She’s selfish, rude, and a bit of a jerk, but her friends make her feel relatable, she stands up for them, and their bond and trust are reflected in their teamwork. It’s not something I expected, but it makes the characters more likable than if they were presented on their own.
One of the best aspects of the original series is the elaborate, innovative games to keep the students on their toes, but in this spinoff, there aren’t many creative gambling games until episode three, about the midpoint in the short season. It’s not enough for me to praise it because there were only a few tactics that impressed me. It’ll follow a similar format as our heroine suffers a crushing defeat, then somehow outwits everyone and proves she’s superior. It’s not entirely the storyline’s fault because of its lack of time. By the last episode, it felt like we finally hit a turning point, only for it to be rushed in an ambiguous ending if they’ll be a second season or not.
Kakegurui Twin still has plenty of strong, cruel women.
There are still plenty of things to enjoy in Kakegurui Twin, especially the consistent amount of powerful women. They’re still cruel, sadistic, petty, and intelligent. There’s a list of new characters that you won’t recognize in Kakegurui. It sets this series apart as a proper spinoff, instead of relying on popular, already known characters. This made me extremely interested to know what happens to all these characters. It does feel a bit disappointing to finally feel fully invested at the end.
If you were a fan of all the little gay moments, that still holds up. You’ll see questionable servant-master relationships, and even the dub takes it a step further with some of the translations. I would usually opt for the sub-option, but I got a laugh from this dub.
Overall, this series lacks in a few areas.
The standards are high, but not much stands out in this show until the end. It doesn’t get enough time to match its predecessor, which sucks because I really like the premise. Six episodes is not enough for a spinoff series with twelve volumes. It’s not the series fault, but the way it’s adapted and rushed. You’ll probably lose interest at some point, but I’m still hopeful it’ll get a second season. Kakegurui Twin needs a second chance, a second season to continue the story properly.