And so here it is at last, the finale of Kaiji S2! It was a year and two days ago that I finished blogging my first series, Shukufuku no Campanella. Amazing how time flies… Anyway, with episode 25 providing the epic climax we’d been waiting all those weeks for, episode 26 was free to focus purely on closure, wrapping up all the loose ends and squaring all those debts. 😛
At the beginning of the episode, however, those debts were probably the furthest thing from Kaiji’s mind – he’d just triumphed over The Bog and won over 700 million yen, after all. The black suits that not so long ago were preparing to drag him away now turn to Ichijou instead (seems that all Hyoudou’s anger was aimed at him, not Kaiji as I wrote in my last post – thanks to Clinton for letting me know in the comments). But before they can take him away, Kaiji has one last message for him:
Kaiji tells the (former) manager to crush everyone else in the underground hell or wherever else he ends up, and come back to face him again someday. Ichijou promises that next time he will be victorious, and cries manly tears as he is led away. Give it a few weeks, and he’ll probably have Ohtsuki’s old job… Anyway, back to the jackpot:
The balls are exchanged for cash, Kaiji pays the amount he owes Teiai in order to secure his freedom. Then, he heads off to Hotel Akagi (lol) to split the rest with Endou and Sakazaki. The split isn’t exactly even – Endou and Sakazaki are owed certain amounts extra to cover the various loans and preparation costs that went towards making Kaiji’s challenge a success, but these are still relatively small amounts when compared with their overall winnings. So once those have been deducted, the remainder is split three ways:
The three millionaires choose to celebrate their win with nice food and plenty of drink. Eventually, the discussion turns to the amounts of money each received. Sakazaki feels that he’s the least fortunate, since he threw away 50 million on his first ill-fated Bog challenge (looking back, after all that it took them to win, using magnets to defeat it seems even more ridiculous :razz:). In response, Kaiji then tells them of his plans to free the 45s, which would cost around 50 million, and then split the ~140 million he has left with them. Leaving him with ~23 million – a huge step down from their initial jackpot! What a nice guy. Maybe too nice for his own good…
Sakazaki initially calls Kaiji an idiot for ‘wasting’ his money on something like that, but before long he is crying manly tears and applauding his generosity. He also offers (no, pretty much demands) to have Kaiji marry his daughter Mikoko, something which Kaiji strongly declines. But part way through this ‘discussion’, Sakazaki suddenly passes out. Moments later, Kaiji’s own eyesight becomes blurry… I think I can see where they pulled the live action film’s ending from now…
Four hours later, Kaiji awakens to find Sakazaki still asleep, and no sign of Endou. He wakes up Sakazaki, whose immediate reaction to hearing about Endou’s disappearance is to check his money. Fortunately for him, it’s all there. Unfortunately for Kaiji, most of his share isn’t. Next to a much smaller (though still impressive) pile of notes is a message from Endou, informing Kaiji that the missing money was simply the interest he owed for the extra loan they agreed to the first time Kaiji ran out of cash and pachinko balls. Compound interest, at 30% every 10 minutes. As he didn’t achieve victory until just over an hour and a half after signing the contract, this interest added up to a staggering 127,850,000 yen. Since it was all signed and legal, and since Endou had disappeared to who knows where, there wasn’t much left for Kaiji to do other than writhe around on the floor, calling him names.
Seeing Kaiji’s state, Sakazaki comes up with a flimsy excuse to leave as quickly as possible, taking his money with him of course. In reality, he’s worried that Kaiji’s bad luck will rub off on him. And so Kaiji is left alone, and finally gets some (non-drug induced) sleep after his exhausting ordeal. He is later awakened by the doorbell, and when he opens the door to see who it is, he finds Teiai’s black suits waiting for him. Turns out they just want the watch/tracking device that was attached to his arm when he left the labour camp back, but the talkative one (who doesn’t have a name, as far as I know) is curious to know what Kaiji plans to do next. Fully aware that Kaiji’s riches have been reduced to ~60 million, he tries to tempt him into keeping it all – Kaiji will only have 1.7 million left if he bails them out AND splits the remaining cash, after all.
Kaiji’s mind is already made up, however. Not only does he plan to free the former 45s, but he plans to get Ishida’s son out with the remaining money – a guy who he’s only met once, and who he ended up slapping at the time – as a way of repaying his late friend. But since the remaining money technically belongs to all of the 45s, he tells the nameless suit guy to arrange for Ishida Jr. to be released only if all of the group agree to part with their money. If any of them would rather have the 1.7 million than save a guy who had nothing to do with their group, then Ishida stays where he is. This added a nice twist to the end, since this series has been full of people abandoning each other (well, mostly abandoning Kaiji) the moment it became more profitable to do so. Would the same thing happen yet again?
But why is Kaiji hiding? His friends seem disappointed when he isn’t there waiting for them, and the black suit guy forces them to clear off without him. Once they’ve left, he approaches the no longer hiding Kaiji, who seems just as disappointed not to be reunited with his friends. So why didn’t he rush over to meet them?
Even with all the money spent freeing his friends, Kaiji should have had 100,000 yen left… but he lost it all playing pachinko. A hilariously ironic ending. And since he’s penniless, he doesn’t want to mooch off his friends while they celebrate their release.
Amazingly, the nameless guy gives him 30,000 yen (a gift from him, not a loan from Teiai) and tells him to chase after his friends. No doubt this money will be gone within 24 hours as well, but it shows that those working for Teiai aren’t all bad guys, it allows Kaiji to reunite with his companions, and is about as close to a happy ending as I could have ever hoped for this series!
Well, that was great fun. Expect an end of season post after Baka Test, Dantalian, Mayo Chiki and Blood-C have ended, and I’ll let you know of any plans to blog further series once the new season starts and I’ve decided what to pick up. 😀