Chuukan Kanriroku Tonegawa is a spin-off of the Kaiji series, which follows Tonegawa, the right hand man of Kazutaka Hyoudou, the president of the Teiai Corporation and owner of numerous gambling tournaments. After Hyoudou is getting bored with his life, he orders Tonegawa to organize a so called "game of death" as it is his and his subordinate's job to keep the president in a good mood. Tonegawa must cooperate with his subordinates in order to make the president happy and what follows is a humorous story of his interactions with his subordinates and other characters of the Kaiji series.
Chuukan Kanriroku Tonegawa is a non-canon spin-off series to Kaiji. Written not by the master himself, but by two of his die hard fans. The series focuses around a man named Tonegawa, who was introduced in the first anime season.
From its settings, CKT is the polar opposite of Fukumoto Nobuyuki's (the author of Kaiji) gambling series for the reason that the main lead is not a person taking part in the gambling games, but instead working for the man who is behind these events. For that matter, recognizing this series to be even part of the same universe with Kaiji would be impossible if
it wasn't for Madhouse giving it an anime adaptation with identical production values and characters as in Kaiji. Similar ideas have been executed with great success in the past, such as Full Metal Panic Fumoffu which was also the 3rd season to FMP franchise, and the polar opposite of its first 2 seasons.
Despite the vastly different setup, the biggest difference between CKT and Kaiji lies within the series' approach. There where Kaiji was a game - thriller from its genres, CKT is a slice of life comedy series. Those who expected this to be anything like Kaiji are now disappointed, which somewhat can explain the low mean score the series currently has. Personally, I have the ability to appreciate series for more than one reason, and have been laughing my butt sore with CKT.
The comedy is badass and manly beyond belief, and focuses around the challenges Tonegawa meets in his daily job. This one time, bunch of people loaned money from the wrong folks, more specifically, from Tonegawa's boss. This is okay, of course, but now it's time to pay back, bitches! Tonegawa and his lackeys want to get their money and there is no escaping the manliness. They are literally everywhere and own everything in Japan, apparently. They go to your work, random car backseats, any alley in Chinatown. Just name it and they are there, and oh, you will pay no matter how small the sum you owe, is.
This other time, Tonekawa got mad at another dude for having too complicated of a last name (which he later forgot). How anyone can even write comedy like this is beyond me. "Apologize to me for having such a complex name." Arrogance like this tends to create good comedy moments, and here they truly shine. Most of our scenes are similarly amazing, and will appeal to manly men, such as myself, unconditionally. It's no secret that people with less money have no value in the eyes of society and CKT promotes this shamelessly with scenes such as these.
The characters are one of our selling points, and the main reason why the comedy works so well. The president dude (Tonegawa's boss), is a real philosopher. Lays on bed made of his employees (yes, you read correctly), telling how humans are being fed with money like animals with food. Apparently, the biggest mistake citizens make is think of society as their mother. Our manly men are here to show what real men are about.. by taking everything these pathetic people in debt own and making their life miserable while making sure that they understand how this is, indeed, their own fault for not understanding how money works. I must admit I love it when dudes who never understood what dollar is worth, get what is coming. The comedy is beyond great. It always treats trash people like the trash they are. I appreciate dudes like these when it comes to comedic content.
This series will most likely not appeal all that well to extremely sympathetic people, or those who forget that this is all just comedy centering around very brutal and illegal gambling business... or are also very poor and in debt themselves.. or further have yet to acknowledge that this is how the world works, like it or not.
The narrator is also a highly visible character, and an epic one for that matter. Whenever he says anything, it's like UFC fighter introductions in Japanese, except he does it with every word no matter the subject and how anti-climatic the event he describes, is. I also die of laughter when ever he introduces Tonekawa Yukio and pronounces his name "yu-gi-oh".
The production is practically identical to the Kaiji anime series from 10 years ago. Same, cute, moe art style and character design. Manly, badass voices for dudeouses, and awe-inspiring sound effects when anything dramatic happens. Madhouse has done great many questionable choices in the recent years, but this is not one of them.
As a person who enjoys manly and bro stuff, and liked both Kaiji seasons, as well as most of the manga series by the original creator, there is no reason for me to not love this show. The comedy is superb and all the dudes are awesome. Don't be fooled by the mean score that is a complete mystery to everyone as this is, indeed, the best show airing this season.. or at least in top 5.
"Bu...b... bu--but does it have zawa?" Well of fucking course it has zawa.
As a Kaiji fan, I was initially hyped when it was announced we’ll be getting more Kaiji. However, that excitment slowly faded away as soon as I started watching this series.
This Kaiji spin off is shit. There’s no real plot. It’s basically overdramatic, forced comedy on boring scenes and trying to make them funny. It repeats the same joke for too long sometimes, e.g. remembering the men in black’s name dragged on for 3 episodes. Comedy is subjective, but I find it hard to believe anyone finds this funny. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever laughed once while watching this show.
Tonegawa is supposed
to be this cool, suave, competent, strategic individual, but in this show he’s reduced to a bumbling insecure man that stresses over remembering some men in black’s names. The president is supposed to be thus intimidating, wise old man. Here he’s a bumbling old coot with mood swings
The men in black are bland, one dimensional characters.
The narrator’s voice is so annoying and tries so hard to be funny it ends up having the opposite effect. The osts aren’t helping, the “zawa zawa~” doesn’t fit the tone of this show and just build false suspense.
I can’t fathom why there’s so many positive reviews on this garbage.
If you’re a Kaiji fan, I’d recommend steering clear from this because it fails to capture what makes Kaiji so great and it’s not even about gambling to begin with.