The Underscore’s Bleach review 392


392 The Breaking Glaciers

Hey there everyone, welcome to yet another Bleach review by yours truly. This week we got a little more from the chapter in exchange for Kubo taking a small hiatus. Kubo’s head was probably still spinning with all the inversing and reversing done by Sakanade, so I’m sure he can use the hiatus to straighten that out. With this week’s chapter he at least deserves this much don’t you agree? Well, I’d better get to the chapter as soon as possible, and I’ll be doing that with the Hueco Mundo scanlation this week, so thanks to them for this week’s chapter. But before going over the usual poll results…

What’s this? Something new for my Bleach reviews? Why, yes it is! Basically I kind of liked the concept of getting a simple numbered rating for a chapter that isn’t based only on my own humble opinion, but that of multiple readers. What better way to do this than to use an extra poll to have you give a rating on the chapter you just read? Now the poll won’t be posted here, but the results will be. The polls will be taken by the Bleach character that does this best -as he’s proven once more this week-: Kon! At the end of this review you will find a picture of Kon followed by a link to a poll for this week’s chapter. This header will be used to indicate the average rating for the previous chapter. It’s just a little something to have you guys take a more critical look at the chapter and to see how you readers liked the chapter. Basically it will contain the chapter’s title with the rating and nothing more. Now we’ll just have to see if this will work out or not, so I’m counting on you guys . Of course, this poll won’t replace the usual polls, of which the results will follow right after the rating of the previous chapter. Speaking of the poll results, here they come!

With such a shocking turn of events last week, one could only wonder what happened to Aizen for him to end up the way he did last week. After being stabbed four times one can pretty much assume it would mean his death. But did you guys think this was his end? One person thought Aizen would find this incident one to retreat for a while in order for him to come back bigger and better. This would be a great time for him to rebuild his armies while recuperating, if anything it would make him interested in Orihime once more. Someone else thought this would be his end, that he would only have his spare dying moments to curse his luck. Perhaps this person is tired of Aizen or maybe (s)he is hoping Gin turns out to be the true villain in all of this. Then we have one more other person with a somewhat different opinion as (s)he believed Aizen would drop dead on the spot making it Hitsugaya’s victory. Perhaps this person is a great Hitsugaya fan, or maybe just wanted to add a touch to the option described above. Coming in fourth in the polls, with five voters, are the people who don’t care (anymore). With all the twists and turns made in this fight, going from Aizen being invincible to being taken down in half a chapter it could be a bit disappointing I suppose. Or maybe they just don’t care for Aizen. Taking somewhat of a leap in voters, we have the option of Aizen using Hollowfication to turn things around with 16 voters making it third in the polls. Aizen sought out the power of Hollows for quite a long time, so him dying without using that power would make it somewhat anticlimactic. What better way to start off with more Hollow power than to use the regeneration ability? But 23 people wouldn’t be fooled by Kyouka Suigetsu as they were pretty sure this was all made up by Aizen using his Zanpakutou. Last week would be one of the best time to use it to dodge all the captain’s attacks and one can only imagine what Aizen might be able to do using Kyouka Suigetsu… But 33 people didn’t even have to think about this as they thought Aizen would just dust himself off to continue his slaughtering of Shinigami and wannabe Arrancar. He wouldn’t need Kyouka Suigetsu, forget Hollowfication, he’d just walk it off like a real man! Who would’ve guessed he wouldn’t even have to do that? -Except for the 23 voters who got it right that is

Ichigo at the top

The main protagonist always gets the best fights

We finally get the results for the Bleach Best Bout poll after a long time’s wait. Kon gets straight to the point as he tells us that he isn’t in the top 10 at all. With one of the best bouts the story ever had, Kon vs. Yuzu, not even in the top 10 I couldn’t even find a reason to actually keep reading… Of course we had a few battles that could be considered to be better such as Kon vs. Rukia’s foot; Kon vs. Ichigo’s foot; Zaraki vs. Nnoitra; Yoruichi vs. Soi-Fon; Ishida vs. Mayuri; Rukia vs. Aaroniero; Renji vs. Byakuya; and Toushiro vs. Gin… Yeah I know, I’m just summarizing the tenth to fifth place results along with a few of Kon’s harshest battles without really commenting. But I really can’t top Kon’s comments here (e.g. ‘Nee-san vs. some dude who isn’t nee-san’, need I say more? ), so I might as well get to the asshole who bagged the top four -priceless Kon, just priceless . It wouldn’t be Bleach if we didn’t get a tie, and this time it is Ichigo vs. Grimmjow and Strawberry vs. Red Pineapple-head. I can only say that I enjoyed these fights quite a bit, though I’m surprised Ichigo vs. Kenpachi isn’t in the top 10. Anyways, Ichigo’s fight against Renji was the first one in which we were able to see Ichigo’s training with Urahara come to full fruition. Renji was at full power this time, while Ichigo had finally learned Zangetsu’s name and was able to show some actual strategy during his fights. Ichigo opening Renji’s eyes to his true desires as a result of the battle and throwing Soul Society into further chaos also helped make a great fight of course. Then we have Ichigo vs. Grimmjow. After the beating dealt by Ulquiorra, Grimmjow enters with Orihime in order to have him healed for a rematch. Third times’ a charm as this time the two go head to head with all they have resulting in Grimmjow’s defeat as Ichigo managed to win with the mental support of Orihime (and Nell to some extent). Ichigo proved to us that he had gotten a lot stronger, though sadly it was done with an unexplained increase of Hollowfication duration. The results, however, were great nonetheless. Speaking of Orihime’s support and mysterious Hollowfication changes, Ulquiorra vs. (Neo-)Ichigo landed second place in this poll. What can I say; I’d even put this fight in first place if it were up to me. This fight gave us so many new things and influenced Ichigo more than any other fight in a long time making it awesome to say the least. The only reason this probably didn’t get first place is that it hasn’t been in the anime yet, which certainly gave the first place a nice edge if you ask me. Ichigo vs. Byakuya on Soukyouku hill got first place. The fight was one that was long awaited and executed perfectly. Ichigo showed us his Bankai for the first time and even Shirosaki popped in for a moment. Some of the moves displayed by Ichigo are spoken of ‘till this day and are even being spammed in the anime so many times -Ichigo vs. Senbonzakura that is- that I don’t even want to see them anymore -for now . With no chapter next week I can only tell you to reread the chapters with these fights. I’d say they’d do a better job than anyone could to explain how great they are. Of course, the greatest pervert in Bleach, better known as Kon, deserves to have his true battles recognized as well. I was so happy to see him again that I’ve decided to dedicate this week’s poll to his epic fights facing impossible odds. But before you try to choose the most epic of his fights -which must be oh so hard- we have quite the epic battle taking place right now.

The Eagle that flew over the top

It stings, doesn’t it Aizen?

After Hitsugaya’s attack from last week’s chapter, we see Ichigo staring in awe at what the young captain did. But Ichigo isn’t the only one amazed at what is happening as we catch a glimpse of Kira standing by Hinamori and Iba. Then we witness Aizen with Hyourinmaru in his back as he puts his hand to the blade while writhing in pain to see whether this actually happened or not. After reaffirming that the blade is real Aizen gives up after cursing Hitsugaya for what he had done. As Aizen lies there on Hitsugaya’s blade, we see Soi-Fon, Kyouraku, and Hitsugaya’s faces. For a threesome that just defeated the greatest evil in existence they certainly don’t look it. Kyouraku almost looks sad at the idea that they had to kill a former colleague, though he probably knew all along Aizen wasn’t one to be trusted. Most likely he is thinking of all they went through to get to this point, and all they have lost. Soi-Fon on the other hand still looks tense, cautious of Aizen as he is still breathing at this point. But Hitsugaya, the young captain who has just slain the biggest jerk in existence, almost looks disappointed. All the anger he had for Aizen came down to this moment, and now that he has done what he set out to do he probably still feels the hatred he held towards Aizen is still there. The man he hated so much is hanging on his blade, with a few stabs in his abdomen and now two sword stabs in his chest. He probably hoped he would feel more relieved with Aizen dying at his hand, but he may now be realizing that Aizen’s death won’t undo the past. In spite of the captains not feeling ready to celebrate, there are others who are.

Celebrations!

Pinch me, I must be dreaming!

Kira and Iba suddenly realize that the battle is all over. Aizen has been beaten by the captains after all this time. While Kira was healing Hinamori, Iba was sitting next to them -instead of running to his captain’s aid…-, Hisagi was trying to come to terms with his former-captain’s death, Omaeda somehow managed to steer clear from Aizen, and Rangiku was recovering from the wounds dealt by Eón which have just been healed by Kira. Iba then turns to Kira and tells him that he should look happier at the fact that things are finally over. Even the usually grim Kira manages to smile at their victory when he suddenly notices Hinamori getting back up. While Hinamori gets up Iba and Kira ask her if she is ready to, but she completely ignores them as she starts walking away. The two lieutenants look at each other as they realize Hinamori is probably feeling down due to the loss of her captain. Even though she was released from the illusion of Aizen being a good guy, she probably still held on to the feelings she had then. Losing the object of her affection like this can only result in her feeling this down. As Iba and Kira try to stop the depressed Hinamori from walking away, we witness the other side of the spectrum.

Oh Happy Days!

If anyone knows about turning things around, it’s this guy

As Shinji puts Sakanade over his shoulder, Shinji is caught up in two emotions. First there’s the fact that they finally managed to finish Aizen off. The smile on Shinji’s face right here is meant for that sole purpose. After 100 years he finally managed to finish things. But Shinji still has some unfinished business, the bastard that cut Hiyori in two: Gin. The anger Shinji had to suppress while fighting Aizen can now finally be let out as it can no longer be used against him by Aizen. As such Shinji glares at Gin as he asks him if he agrees on things being turned around. Meanwhile Gin is standing in the same place as we last saw him, though we don’t see his expression. Is Gin now crying at the loss of his captain? Is he trying to figure out how to move on now that Aizen has met his end? It almost seems like this is all but a bad dream for him, whereas this is all a dream come true for Soul Society and the Vizards…

Wake up call

Ichigo’s being a party pooper… or is he?

Ichigo witnessed how Aizen got what he deserved at the hand of his victims. They finally got what they wanted after all this time and suddenly Ichigo is ruining the mood. Suddenly he asks everyone what they’re doing. Is he angry that he didn’t get to kill Aizen himself after preparing himself mentally for all this time? What could be wrong with Ichigo, ruining the mood like this…

MOMOOOOO!

Dreams can come true… but so can nightmares

Hearing Ichigo’s voice the four captains realize there’s more to his cry than mere jealousy as they find themselves looking at reality. Where Aizen once hung on Hyourinmaru, Hitsugaya finds his dearest friend Hinamori hanging on his blade. Kyouraku and Soi-Fon are shocked to see the fragile girl hanging in the place where the demon once was as Hitsugaya feels reality sinking in. But Shinji is the one to fully realize the horror of this very moment as he saw Hinamori already. He turns around to find the other Hinamori being chased by Kira and Iba. These two noticed the tumult behind them as they turn around to see what is going on. No sooner do they turn around or they find themselves cut by none other than Aizen(!!1!!111).

Evil’s true face

I saw him in the dictionary, in the picture next to jerk, asshole, bastard, lady-killer, evil, etc. etc….

Aizen mercilessly cuts down the unsuspecting lieutenants as he turns to face Shinji, the first one to turn his head towards the disguised Aizen. I have to say, Aizen really outdid himself this time. He took my own malevolent prediction from last week and added his personal touch to execute the plan with so much evil in it that it should be illegal -which it is in civilized and most uncivilized countries mind you, I checked – by not using Ichigo as a substitute, but Hinamori instead. I predicted Aizen would have Ichigo stabbed by Hitsugaya after which he would immediately suspend the illusion. Aizen, however, is so cruel as to have everyone feel the sense of relieve of finally achieving their goals, making them lose their guard and a great part of their resentment towards him, only to have it skyrocket once more to heights we’ve never seen before. A great example of this would have to be Shinji. The anger he held towards Aizen was probably no greater than that of most of the other Vizards, which allowed him to keep his cool to set up schemes such as the one we saw last week. Aizen, however, saw through this pride and used it in order to have him aid in the harming of an innocent young girl who was already greatly injured both physically as well as mentally. Let’s face it, you’d probably be pissed as well if you were to find out you were used to harm someone such as Momo. Shinji tries to calm himself by trying to figure out where things went wrong as he asks Aizen when he began using Kyouka Suigetsu. Aizen then can’t help but laugh at Shinji’s question as Shinji should be fully aware that Aizen can use his absolute hypnosis at any time affecting the way his opponents perceive things immediately. Shinji knew that fully well, but was unable to notice when this change took place, which is why he wanted to know when Aizen activated Kyouka Suigetsu. But then Aizen retorts by asking Shinji why he thought Aizen wasn’t using Kyouka Suigetsu at all. It is true that plenty of readers considered the possibility of Aizen using Kyouka Suigetsu from the start, though I highly doubt they thought it would be used this way. Shinji appears to be thinking along the same lines as he thinks back to the moment he started thinking Kyouka Suigetsu wasn’t activated.

Despair

I don’t think violence will be enough to satisfy Hitsugaya anymore.

Hitsugaya tried so hard to prevent Aizen from using Kyouka Suigetsu by charging at him as soon as he could. But what happened was that Aizen already activated Kyouka Suigetsu around that time, possibly at the very moment Hitsugaya told him he wouldn’t be able to. Single mindedly thinking that Aizen hadn’t begun using Kyouka Suigetsu he kept focusing on ending this fight without giving Aizen the chance to do so. Hitsugaya’s words were so full of confidence that the other captains were caught up in it as well, amongst which Shinji who we see running over with anger as he realizes when the ability took effect. Hitsugaya, however, has other concerns as he is holding his dearest friend in his arms after brutally injuring her like he did. While holding her as gently as possible we learn that she somehow managed to stay alive in spite of Hyourinmaru’s attack. Looking at the picture with Hinamori a few pages back one can fully realize how completely malevolent Aizen has been using Hinamori. If you look closely you’ll find that the only injury she has, at this time, is the one dealt by Hitsugaya with Hyourinmaru. The fact that Hitsugaya is now solely responsible for what happened to Hinamori will torment Hitsugaya for ages to come, especially if we take his personality into account. Without the slightly comforting idea that others were fooled as well and harmed her too he has now aimed all his hatred at the last person he wanted to. At least Hinamori is in luck that she didn’t get hit by Suzumebachi’s Nigeki kessatsu. The question, however, is who or what did get hit by the other attacks. Could everyone have been hitting thin air all this time, with the exception of Hitsugaya? Or has Kubo forgotten to draw the other injuries Hinamori sustained? Seeming as how we’re talking about Aizen here, I wouldn’t put it past him to have all attacks hit thin air while the last attack is the only one to hit Hinamori. If anything I would say this is the case as Ichigo would have stopped the captains a lot sooner than this if you take into account how much time passes during the consecutive attacks from last week’s chapter. Besides which, it would explain Ichigo’s expression in last week’s chapter. As if the sheer idea of hurting Momo wasn’t enough for Hitsugaya, she actually adds to the injury as she asks “Shiro-chan” why he hurt her. Hitsugaya then realizes that Hinamori was probably fully aware of what happened to her, and all she saw was Hitsugaya stabbing her in cold blood. While everyone else was watching Aizen’s skewering, Hinamori witnessed a different reality -can’t say for sure she saw actual reality as Ichigo did- as she received the final blows. With all that Aizen has done to him and Hinamori in the past and what he did now, it isn’t too strange to have the young captain react the way he does right now as he violently charges towards Aizen.

Reality stinks

Aizen rejects your reality and substitutes his own.

Blinded by rage, Hitsugaya swoops down towards Aizen -where did Hinamori go?- with a single goal in mind, kill Aizen! Kyouraku tries to stop the young captain as Soi-Fon finds Shinji charging towards Aizen as well. As chaos starts to reign and despair manifests itself in the hearts of these captains, Aizen informs them they have just been utterly defeated. No sooner did he speak these words or all four of these captains are struck down instantly. As blood covers the streets of Fake Karakura town, one can only imagine what will happen as Ichigo is the only one left from those who gathered a few chapters ago to battle Aizen. Will this sudden turn of events result in Ichigo fighting Aizen by himself? Does Unohana now see the urgency of the situation to have her step in? Or will we finally see Genryuusai again where he will incinerate everything in sight? Only time will tell, and sadly it’s a long time as we have to wait two whole weeks to get some answers!

Wow. Just wow. If there’s ever been a character I love to hate it would be Aizen. I would just plain hate him if Momo would have died -the same way I just plain hate Akainu for killing Ace in One Piece-, though it could still happen of course. If anything I almost have some respect for the way in which he executed the things he did in the past two chapters. I really can’t say more about this chapter than what I said in the review. I just loved how Aizen left everyone to enjoy their victory before bursting their bubble. It only shows us how perfectly evil Aizen is and how well he plots these things out, even if he came up with them on the spot. Now before going over my predictions for the next chapter, I have one more little extra for my reviews:

This is somewhat based on what happened last week with all the confusion around Sakanade. Things to make your head spin, is either a question, a statement, or a hypothesis/theory for you to think about for a while. This week is the thing to make your head spin is:

Did Ichigo only react at the moment we witnessed in the chapter, or has he been yelling out his lungs all this time and did Aizen only allow his voice to be heard at the moment we witnessed this week?

You don’t have to give an answer at all, just think about this on your own. Maybe we’ll get the answer in due time, or maybe we’ll never get a real answer. But that’s why this is posted in this section .

I’ll only give one prediction this week just to give you guys to the opportunity to think up more possibilities during what may be two long, looooong weeks. My guess is that Unohana will be the one to step up next time. She’ll have used her skills to heal both Hacchi and to stabilize Hiyori. Hacchi will proceed to heal Hiyori, while Unohana will step up to the plate. Reason for this is that she is one of the people Gin mentioned that is capable of blocking out Kyouka Suigetsu’s illusions. She already managed to perceive some irregularities in Aizen’s corps in the Soul Society Arc, and something tells me she has the skills to see through Kyouka Suigetsu’s absolute hypnosis and to give Aizen a run for his money. She will probably step in after a small conversation between Aizen and Ichigo took place, where Ichigo will feel some despair when he realizes that so many powerful Shinigami aren’t even able to scratch Aizen when they all join forces. Well, that’s it for this week’s review. I hope you guys enjoyed it. Be sure to let me know what your thoughts are on this week’s chapter and/or review, give any theories that you may have and to vote in this week’s poll. I’ll see you again in two weeks! Also be sure to rate this chapter!


Here’s where you guys get to give this week’s chapter a rating . It will be a rating going from 1 to 10, giving you plenty of choice. The ratings will be added to make a total score and that score will be divided by the number of voters to make up this chapter’s rating. Another thing to keep in mind before you vote, 1 is the lowest rating whilst 10 is the highest rating. The total rating will result in the following scores:

1.0: Abysmal

1.1 – 3.4: Awful

3.5.-5.4: Bad

5.5-6.9: Average

7.0-8.9: Great

9.0-9.9: Awesome

10: Perfect

So pick your vote!


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~ by The Underscore on February 13, 2010.

6 Responses to “The Underscore’s Bleach review 392”

  1. well aizen unpredictable for all except ichigo 3 soul reapers left head captain, unhonan, ichigo and others we know and haven’t seen yet youichi kiskue, and even ishin kurosaki vs Aizen and Gin i know unhonan been there as long as yammato can she really do something about aizen and what ever happen to jushiro ukitakie

  2. Ukitake is still deciding whether or not he likes his new chest piercing or not from Wonderweiss. Actually kinda makes me curious if he could “redirect” Aizen’s shikai onto Ichigo and make like difficult for Aizen. I would think Aizen’s shikai would be kido based and “could” be reflected but how exactly does targeting work with Suigetsu in that matter.

    Great chapter and review, Underscore! I’d love to see Unohana’s attacks but I still feel cheated out of seeing Kyroku’s bankai. Unless its one of those cases where it would have been useless, I’d have thought Mr. Shoot First would have used it right off the bat on Aizen.

  3. you know i still dont like hitsugaya that much, but DAMN!! poor guy really got screwed over this time. poor momo. if it wasnt for the fact that i have becoume cynical after seeing so many other characters in this manga survive stab wounds, i would probobly be worried that she was dead. i mean she survived a stab wound before with unohana’s help. And Unohana is here now so……yeah
    hopefully now that pretty much all of the captians have fallen against aizen by himeself(what the hell were the point of the espada here in karakura again kubo? Baragan was the only one who managed any lasting damage, and it still hasnt even slowed soi fon down!!) Old man Yamma will step up to the plate and go one on one with aizen while telling ichigo to watch for an opeaning. i get the feeling though that we may go back to hueco mundo to find out what the rest of ichigo’s nakama are up to and how the fight with yammy is going.

  4. Poor Hinamori and Hitsugaya, or HitsuGAY if you prefer that.

  5. @sam:
    There certainly is plenty left to do before Aizen can call himself victorious. The question is whether Yoruichi, Urahara, Isshin, and/or Hiruzen will involve themselves with this fight right now. If anything they’ll wait until the last moment to step in if you ask me. As for Ukitake, something tells me we won’t learn anything new about him until Genryuusai steps in again.

    @Tony:
    Glad you enjoyed the review. I can see how you may feel cheated out of a Bankai, but I’d say the situation doesn’t lend itself for Kyouraku’s Bankai yet, though I honestly have no idea why that would be :). But what you said about Ukitake redirecting Kyouka Suigetsu sounds pretty interesting. Seeming as how his Zanpakutou does have something to do with reflecting and visual stimuli tend to be reflected, which is required to activate Kyouka Suigetsu, it should be possible to do.

    @TakashiD:
    Whether you love or hate Hitsugaya, the general consensus should be that he has been screwed by Aizen, no matter how you look at it. Whether you think that’s a good thing or a bad thing has to do with how much you dislike him though :p. Whether Momo will live or not is something that can’t be said right now. Sure, Unohana is still around, but will Hinamori get there on time? We’ll just have to wait and see whether Unohana will keep healing and whether Yamamoto will incinerate everything or not.

    @Dragon:
    Now, now, Hitsugaya isn’t at the age where he’s into girls yet. I mean he’s only over 15 years old (see Bleach chapter -15)… If not he’d have been enjoying himself for quite a while with Matsumoto.

  6. new chapter is out:
    http://mangastream.com/read/bleach/393-59/1
    all i have to say is, Kensei what the hell are you doing? you kinda lost your opponent.

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