Okay, so the current is going to be predictable. Kaiji just has to survive; otherwise the show would just run out of main character. Still, that didn’t prevent this episode from being among the best that this series has had to offer. At the moment, I only see one annoyance in this series: this is one of the worst series to take screenshots for: all the best shots have subtitles in them.
In the Espoir-arc, death was more symbolic, but for the Starside-arc, it’s gotten much, much closer. I loved how, now that there is no more competition, the ten remaining contestants feel much closer together, now that they won’t have to betray to stay alive. Very refreshing for this series. Instead of that, a new threat has appeared: plain old fear and I loved how this episode showed how easily this can go out of control if your life is at stake. Take that, action-movies!
Tonegawa is also shaping up to be one of my favourite characters of this series. Unlike all the contestants, he’s not limited by predictability and after the previous episode I wouldn’t have thought that he’d actually enjoy events like this, seeing the scum of society suffer so much.
One thing that would make Kaii’s survival more credible is that he by far the most emotionally involved with the others. In this episode, you can see that he’s too busy with worrying about the others’ survival to realize that he too is on the verge of death. I also predict that Ishida will play a big role in the next episode, because he keeps relying on Kaiji so much. The two of them will probably use this to get to the other side, while Sahara will use his competitive spirit against Kaiji. It’s a shame that the other characters didn’t receive enough development like this, and they’ll probably all end up dying as well. Perhaps with the exception of the guy in the red shirt.