18 CommentsHunter X Hunter / By Shinmaru /

Hunter x Hunter 66 – Gamblin’ Man

hunter-x-hunter-killua-gambling

This is Killua mere steps away from going broke and turning to a life of booze and hookers like Nicolas Cage in Leaving Las Vegas. How long must Gon and Biscuit have been standing there for Killua to look so gaunt?! I feel like Greed Island is a giant social critique by Ging: There’s fun to be had, but if you delve too deeply into it or take it too seriously, then it can destroy you. Gambling is bad, children! Killua would have stayed until his face exploded if Biscuit hadn’t knocked him out. It could happen to you, too!! Also don’t do drugs.

It is, however, quite striking just how seriously the game is taken by nearly everyone who inhabits it, and there is a definite contrast to the childish veneer of Greed Island. To the audience, Gon, Killua and Biscuit are displaying the “right” way to play the game: Going on adventures, having fun and collecting cards. They do silly things like punch trees so that rare beetles will rain down from the sky (super gross btw), rescue a young girl from the depths of a mysterious mansion (and uppercut a bodyguard), Gon and Killua enter some sort of tournament (I think the OVAs may have specified the nature of the tournament, but I don’t remember off the top of my head), and even Killua’s jaunt to the Hunter Exam is hilariously frivolous. I can imagine people being disappointed if they wanted something more substantial; however, Killua is basically a Hunter already, anyway, so why hold off the ceremony?

Anyway, yeah, even though Biscuit, Gon and Killua have a clear focus, they’re still getting their shit done in a fun way. The one time that’s interrupted is when they play the game the way everyone else does — through trading and deals. The scene is tense. Gon and Killua have been fleeced before, and they’re prepared should it happen again. Luckily for them, their trading partner is actually interested in playing fair. The ordeal passes without event, and Killua comments on how disappointing it is. There’s no real sense of fun there, no feeling of having earned these new cards through some activity. They simply gave something up and received something in return. Boring! I’m sure Gon and Killua would rather have punched a dinosaur in the face to get those cards.

hunter-x-hunter-bomber-smile

Meanwhile, the Bomber is playing the game the opposite of Gon and Killua (at least from what we’ve seen of him). He’s all about shady backroom deals and finding the sneakiest ways to take advantage of the game. The plan to use the Tax Collector’s Gauntlet card in combination with the Risky Dice to steal cards is definitely a smart plan. It’s probably fair within the confines of the game, too; it’s not as if the Bomber is cheating by using the abilities of a card and item together beneficially, even if it is for a shady purpose. Still, it’s a dick move despite being a valid strategy. We’ll see if Tsezgerra is actually naive enough to believe that the Bomber will deal fairly with him even when presented with an overwhelmingly good offer.

This whole thing, though, shows why teenage pilots in Gundam loathe adults so much: They just fuck things up. Attempting to out think the opponent and scraping together every possible advantages using the systems the game offers is the adult thing to do, but it’s so mechanical. Sometimes you gotta uppercut a butler or ride a lion or something. Could you imagine the Bomber riding a lion to get a card? I bet not!

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18 Comments

  1. Posted February 12, 2013 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    Hunter X Hunter is doing something I thought only a shounen series like Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood could do. Each episode brings something new to the table, but it never deals with too much at one time. And not one aspect of the show ever gets tossed aside and forgotten. AND each episode makes me long for the next.

    I think Hunter X Hunter is the shounen series I’ve been longing for since I finished FMA: Brotherhood.

    Also, FUCK YEAH HISOKA IS BACK!!!!!

    • Gunslinger
      Posted February 12, 2013 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

      FUCK YEAH HISOKAAA …. Shinmaru where is the usual screenshot ?

      • Posted February 12, 2013 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

        Haha, all in due time, my friend. Can’t blow my load early (so to speak).

    • Posted February 12, 2013 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

      All that is a big part of why I like Hunter x Hunter so much!

  2. Gunslinger
    Posted February 12, 2013 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    They really added a lot of things in this episode, stuff that was missing from the older ova. All in all it makes for a fast pace but very enjoyable viewing so far. The discussions about the risky dice and the bomber trade were pretty interesting.

    One question i do have though is for the time that Gon and Killua have been training, what were the Spiders doing? I would have expected them to eliminate everyone by then.

    Also continuing the general HxH coldness is Killua’s ruthless dispatching of poor Zepile.

    • Stef
      Posted February 12, 2013 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      Killua is such a dick ;)

    • Posted February 12, 2013 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

      Haha, I laughed a bit when Killua was like, “Oh Zepile, what up, man?” and then knocked him the fuck out.

      I’m guessing the Spiders were just exploring shit? I dunno, seems like they would get bored of collecting cards and beating the game pretty quickly, especially since I imagine few people in the game are actually on the level of any of the Phantom Troupe.

  3. Stef
    Posted February 12, 2013 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

    It’s all fun and all, but I’m itching for some action now. I hope they stop faffing and get into some serious business next episode. Remember when stuff happened in this anime? Me too.

    Boy, I am whining a lot about big shows lately. Feel free to call me Complainy Pants.

    • Gunslinger
      Posted February 12, 2013 at 7:50 pm | Permalink

      Don’t worry :)

    • Posted February 12, 2013 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

      Haha, I don’t mind. It’s not as if you don’t raise valid complaints when you comment here. :)

      I do actually feel similarly to you, though. I’m enjoying this arc more than I did when I watched the OVAs (I was thoroughly bored by it back then), but Greed Island does feel breezy in comparison to the gripping Yorkshin arc.

      • Posted February 12, 2013 at 11:30 pm | Permalink

        It’s the calm before the storm!

  4. Posted February 12, 2013 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    Man, I would have loved to see some more stuff from the exam’s side of things, but alas, it was just not meant to be.
    …And then you realize that Illumi and Hisoka could have done the same as Killua. Things would have looked VASTLY different if they had done so.

    • Stef
      Posted February 13, 2013 at 9:42 am | Permalink

      So would I. But when you think about it, there wouldn’t have been any challenge for Killua anyway. As Shinmaru put it: He’s basically a Hunter already, so it’s just as well.

    • Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

      Haha, yeah. I imagine Hisoka held himself back because he’s more into murder when there’s a challenge to be had (though I think he did kill some participants, yeah?). Illumi … he probably doesn’t kill people unless he’s contracted to do so.

  5. Fumoffu!!
    Posted February 13, 2013 at 12:02 am | Permalink

    And that year, several young hopefuls that should have been destined for greatness got the shit beaten out of them by some kid, traumatizing them, leading them to never take the Hunter exam again.

    Young Killua, crusher of dreams.

    • Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

      Some dreams just need to be crushed.

  6. il-Palazzo
    Posted February 13, 2013 at 1:41 am | Permalink

    “Could you imagine the Bomber riding a lion to get a card? I bet not!”
    ^
    ^
    ^
    Now I imagine Bomber and his dudes riding lions, having a time of their life. One of them yelling, “THIS IS SO FRIGGIN AWESOME!!!”

    • Posted February 14, 2013 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

      I would yell the same thing if I were riding a lion!

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