Netflix has built up a pretty good library of Japanese anime, with fans worldwide being able to get a taste of the genre which has exploded in popularity globally over the last few years. The likes of Death Note and Fullmetal Alchemist have become iconic in the anime and manga scene, and there are a number of other excellent titles that Netflix has for fans, both old and new, to discover and watch along. One of these is Kakegurui – Compulsive Gambler, which has had two seasons released on Netflix so far.
Kakegurui is set in an elite school, the Hyakkaou Private Academy, for the children of Japan’s wealthiest and most influential people. Here, however, becoming popular and rising through the student ranks is not determined by athletic or academic ability, but through one’s skill at the likes of online blackjack, poker and other gambling activities. Students gain in rank through their monetary contributions to the student council, which sets the gambling system. Those who win climb up the ladder and earn fame and prestige, while those who lose and become indebted are made into pets or ‘slaves’ for the student body, being identified as ‘Doggy’ or ‘Kitty’ based on their gender and having to wear a white tag around their necks for identification. Those who are unable to clear their debts by the time they graduate are forced to adhere to ‘Life Schedules’ which are given to them, essentially making them pay off their debts with their lives. In this scenario enters a girl named Yumeko Jabami, who loves to gamble for the thrill of it, not for the monetary or societal gain, and in the process manages to shake the entire foundation of the system at Hyakkaou and causes the student council to go after her.
It must be made clear that the Netflix show is an adaptation of the original manga, and so while most of the story is identical, some of the characters may be different and exclusive to the Netflix adaptation alone. However, fans have generally praised the adaptation for its accuracy and attention to detail, and have been waiting for more news on the third season, with the second one having been aired between January and March 2019.
At the moment, Netflix does have a licensing deal in place to show the series outside of Japan, which is how the show is available in most countries globally on the streaming service. However, it is not in control of the production and renewal of the show. That decision lies with MAPPA, the Japanese animation studio which took the rights for the television adaptation. Fans have been inundating social media with requests for a renewal, but there has been no word from either Netflix or MAPPA yet. However, it seems inconceivable that the show will not be renewed, due to its immense popularity as manga as well as the good reviews that the anime has generally received.
Keeping all of this in mind, we can expect that the third season of the show could be released at some point this year, possibly around December 2020. However, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic could delay this timeline, and fans may not get to see the next instalment in the drama at Hyakkaou till 2021. Nevertheless, fans are waiting for any news with bated breath, and MAPPA and Netflix would be wise to put out some information soon to keep them onside and avoid alienating them over scheduling, when they have managed to do such a good job with adapting an extremely popular manga.