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Kakegurui Season 3 Release Date, Characters And Plot - What We Know So Far

"Kakegurui" is an anime series that follows the fortunes of students at Hyakkou Private Academy, an elite institution which, instead of ranking their students based on academic ability or even performance in sports, encourages them to refine their skills at gambling. The worst players suffer pretty deep humiliations, until transfer student and compulsive gambler Yumeko Jabami enters the scene. The anime was first released in 2017 (it came to Netflix in 2018), almost exactly four years ago, and currently has two seasons of 12 seasons under its belt. The second season, which was called "Kakegurui xx," aired in 2019 — which means it's about time for a third season to debut now that it's 2021. Right?

Fans have been waiting for a renewal of "Kakegurui" for a long time, even allowing for production delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it hasn't happened yet. Here's what we know so far about a new potential set of episodes for this popular shonen anime.

What is the release date for Kakegurui Season 3?

Without a solid renewal announcement either from anime studio Mappa or distributor Netflix, which is licensed to stream the series outside of Japan, there's no way of knowing if "Kakeguri" Season 3 is coming back. Renewals are often based on popularity as well as how much source material there is. "Kakegurui" is based on a Japanese manga series written by Homura Kawamoto and illustrated by Tooru Naomura, which now makes up 14 volumes of 82 chapters. There are some differences between the manga and the anime, but for the most part the anime has covered around 56 episodes. That means there's almost enough for one more season right now. The first season actually ended on an original episode, and the end of the second season also diverged (in both cases, a conclusion of sorts was created, possibly in case the show wasn't renewed). If that might happen again, there would definitely be three seasons worth of material left. 

However, it's uncertain how popular the series actually is. Netflix does not release viewing numbers to the public (and has been making some high-profile cancellations lately). And good reviews and ratings don't necessarily reflect actual statistics when it comes to who and how many people are watching. Should Mappa announce a renewal today, the show would still have to go through the process of production, making a 2022 release the earliest possibility. 

Who are the characters in Kakegurui Season 3?

Yumeko, voiced by Saori Hayami in the Japanese version and by Erika Harlacher in the English, is the show's protagonist, a just and kind student whose entrance at the school changes everything. Over the course of two seasons she has gotten "slaves" through her gambling prowess, but these subordinates have also become her friends. They include Ryota Suzui (Tatsuya Tokutake, Griffin Burns), Mary Saotome (Minami Tanaka, Kira Buckland), and Itsuki Sumeragi (Yuki Wakai, Erica Mendez). 

However, there's also an antagonist, one who never appeared in the manga, named Rei Batsubami (Roni Pak). She was introduced in Season 2 and some fans have speculated on Reddit that she was added just to prolong and conclude the show's final two episodes, although it definitely left an opening for more content. Another series antagonist is Kirari Momobami (Miyuki Sawashiro), the president of the Student Council at the start of the series, who is responsible for the "housepet" hierarchy system that had Suzui so cowed at the beginning. She was the president who figured in the Season 1 finale and also played a large role in the Season 2 events of "Kakegurui."

What is the plot of Kakegurui Season 3?

Both seasons of "Kakegurui" seemed to end on a note that could conclude the series if another season wasn't greenlit, and fans seemed to like Season 1 — as well as its conclusion — a bit better than what followed (via My Anime List). However, at the end of Season 2, there's some confusion about what actually happened. One of the issues, apparently, is that the final episodes of "Kakegurui xx" were not based on the manga, as it hadn't quite caught up to the anime. 

The last episode focused on an auction designed to buy votes for the candidates for president, ending in a coin toss between Rei and Yumeko in which Rei stakes 3 million yen (and her livestock status) and Yumeko stakes the Jabami name: should she lose, she would be banished from the family and become a Batsubami instead. It sounds like Yumeko wins, but she loses a bunch of her votes afterwards by gambling with others. And meanwhile, Rei's determination impresses Kirari, who lets her become human again and choose a new name. 

A Season 3 of this shonen anime would presumably pick up these threads. However, with such a divergence from the manga as Rei's presence represents, it's difficult to know how closely events will align with the next chapters of the manga, which include more election shenanigans, as well as a drama for Mary and the Momobami sisters.