The Underscore’s Bleach review 423


423 Farewell Swords

That’s just great. I can finally start reviewing Bleach normally again, and Kubo messes with me by taking a two week hiatus! At least it’s better than him suddenly starting another Deicide chapter . Just to remind you guys: BLEACH ISN’T OVER YET!!!! From what I heard, there will be two more arcs, at least. One that will take a couple of months and another one that will take 2 to 3 years. Can’t really confirm this, but there’s still hope. But that’s for later (two whole weeks later ), let’s get to this week’s (mediocre) chapter. Thanks go out to Mangastream and Binktopia for their release, which I’ll be using in this week’s review.

 

Bleach chapter 422, The Silent Victory, after being rated by 79 voters gets an average score of:

4.6

Bad

Last week’s chapter gave us Ichigo’s interpretation of Aizen’s motives. The poor genius who could’ve had everything he wanted if he didn’t reject everyone around him, who was sort of lonely in the end. This revelation was one of many shocking events that happened last week. But this raised one question: Do you feel sympathy for Aizen now?

Four voters just didn’t care about that, period. Who cares about Aizen anyways?
Ten voters don’t feel any sympathy for Aizen. Let’s face it, he was a manipulative jerk who gave jerkiness a new meaning. Who cares if he felt lonely? If he wanted to be liked so much he should’ve just taken off those glasses sooner and get all the ladies to swoon over him .
Of course, there was one revelation last week that had little to do with Aizen. One so shocking, so gruesomely cruel that it boggled the mind of fourteen voters…. That’s right, the truth behind The Underscore Mask’s mask, that he was none other than… me! Even I don’t know how that could’ve been possible. In fact, I’m starting to doubt it was even true… It’s not like I would be able to pull off three identities in the same way Gin did .
Eighteen voters, however, had more pressing matters on their minds as Ichigo suddenly collapsed last week. They wanted to know what’s up with Ichigo, to which they got their answer in this week’s chapter.
But, in spite of everything, one option in the poll got more votes than the others. For those of you who were paying attention, it was the only option left to the question of whether you felt sympathy for Aizen: “Yes”. Whether they were captivated by Aizen’s looks, his mind, his Zanpakutou, or are secretly plotting the same things Aizen did, they feel sympathy for the guy… I wonder whether these voters are happy with the start of this week’s chapter.

Judgment

He’s talking about last week’s poll, just so you know.

‘Off to the eighth level of the underground prison: Avici!’ Judgment is passed by the 46 chambers on none other than Aizen Sousuke, who has somehow been freed from the seal Urahara placed on him. The former fifth squad captain is sentenced to the underground prison under the second squad’s jurisdiction for the minimum of 18.800 years. Frankly, I find that punishment to be rather meek for all that Aizen’s done, though it is rather difficult to sentence Aizen to death, immortality and all. Aizen seems to be thinking along the same lines.

Surrounded by the newly assembled 46 chambers while bound on a chair, Aizen’s ego seems to have been revived along with his spiritual body. The previous seal has been replaced by black constraints which keep Aizen bound to a chair. This is apparently enough to keep both Aizen and the Hougyoku at bay as Aizen is still sitting and listening to his so called judgment. Though a sentence of 18.800 years would have most people worried, Aizen can’t help but laugh at the irony of it all. He, once the most powerful being that existed (according to his own ego), is now sentenced by 46 feeble judges to spent time in jail for a definitive time, while he has infinite time in his life. It’s the same as if a fruit fly were to tell you to stay in your room for its entire life -you know, the type of fly that only lives for a day. Possibly looking at it like that, Aizen doesn’t even consider this to be a judgment at all. He only sees the irony of the mighty being judged by the weak.

But the new 46 chambers aren’t too happy to hear such mockery of the court, so they decide to add another 1.200 years to Aizen’s sentence for being cocky. They even bind his eyes and mouth to ensure he can’t mock them any further. It seems that they too realize that Aizen’s mocking can’t be restrained by a seal that doesn’t cover his face entirely. Good to know the 46 chambers haven’t changed after all… mess with their ego and they sentence you to 1200 years of jail time. It seems that Aizen’s mock 46 chambers gave these new guys a good example. That thought must be comforting to Aizen, now that he’ll be spending 20.000 years in jail while the 46 chambers assume he’ll better his ways….

Terrible threesome

Here’s their answer to the question of what they think of Aizen’s judgment…

We hear Yamamoto Genryuusai scolding a couple of imbeciles. The three imbeciles in question are none other than Zaraki Kenpachi, Kuchiki Byakuya, and Shunsui Kyouraku. Kenpachi isn’t really impressed by the scolding, just staring at the ceiling. Byakuya seems to be the only one paying attention, as one would expect from a nobleman. Kyouraku… well… he seems to be thinking about something completely different. So, what makes these three such imbeciles? The loss of their Haori.

The captain’s Haori, which represent the honor of both the Gotei 13, the individual squads, and their pride were lost during the fight against the Espada. Genryuusai knows that the Haori could’ve been ripped or something during those fights, but to just throw them away is disgraceful, no matter the circumstances. Worst of all, the three of them seem to be rather content in spite of losing their Haori. Luckily, the man who knows pride and honor knows exactly what must be done to make amends. Byakuya turns to the captain commander and assures him that he can easily replace those “cheap” Haori. This pisses off Genryuusai as he tells Byakuya that he isn’t talking about the price of the Haori but that it represents something that is almost as important as the victory itself.

Genryuusai then asks the three captains what they think the Haori actually is. Too bad for him, he doesn’t get the answer he was expecting. Which is enough to fuel the old man’s rage to give another scolding to these three that just don’t care.
Let’s face it. Kenpachi thinks the Haori’s a pain and seems to be accustomed to these scolding sessions. The only reason he’s there at all is probably because he knows that Genryuusai would be on his case even more if he weren’t there. Genryuusai did manage to force him into learning Kendo, which helped him in the end, so we know he can be persuasive.
Byakuya isn’t all too troubled by the scolding either. It’s not like it has anything to do with his own pride and those Haori are so cheap in comparison to his other accessories that he doesn’t see the issue here. Knowing Byakuya’s past behavior, as we’ve seen in during the TBTP arc, I’d say he is used to getting scolded by his own grandfather. This must feel like a stroll down memory lane.
But then we have the worst of the three: Shunsui. Shunsui was one of Genryuusai’s first and most talented students. I wouldn’t be surprised if Shunsui were to have declined the order to become part of the zero squad on several occasions as he tends to do what he wants, whenever he wants. But after centuries with Genryuusai, he still doesn’t care about the teachings of pride and honor, which he showed during his fight with Starrk as well. The victory is all that matters, honor and pride are things you decide for yourself.

Eavesdropping

Ukitake enjoys a good book, tea, and listening to the sound of Genryuusai scolding people…

As Genryuusai shows his determination in teaching the three (now demoted to) morons with a new scolding, we find Ukitake, Kiyone, and Sentarou sitting just outside the building. It seems that the gaping hole in Ukitake’s chest was easy to fix for Unohana. She did such a good job that Ukitake can actually walk around in spite of his tuberculosis. But something tells me Ukitake is just looking out for his teacher, who didn’t come out of the battle unscathed. Even though Genryuusai used the sacrificial Kidou in the battle, it cost him his left arm. Ukitake must have been worried about him, since the battle took place only ten days ago, but Genryuusai isn’t the strongest Shinigami around for no reason.

Seeing Genryuusai alive was something I was happy about. He is the strongest Shinigami around and never got the chance to show his Bankai. Losing him in the battle at the hands of Aizen could’ve been possible, but I’m hoping he will get the chance to go all out sooner or later. The fact that he lost his left arm, however, is rather peculiar. I doubt Orihime would’ve told Genryuusai to screw himself if they asked her to heal him, so it’s strange for him to still be walking around with one arm. Then again, Orihime does have trouble healing wounds covered by high concentrations of Reiatsu. With the arm being sacrificed using Kidou, it wouldn’t be too strange for wounds that size to be impossible to heal.

In either case, Genryuusai is still around and scolding, which reassures Ukitake (in spite of his best friend being scolded). Ukitake then tells Kiyone and Sentarou that he’s glad Genryuusai is feeling better, as there’s no being in Soul Society that could take his place. He makes a good point. No matter how you look at it, Genryuusai is probably the perfect example of what a Shinigami captain should be: Powerful, honorable, wise, and ready to teach whippersnappers the important things. If only he knew how to pick a decent 46 chambers…

Their whereabouts

It’s below zero, yet Hitsugaya is sweating…

The scene changes to the 12th squad barracks where a young Shinigami is looking for captain Mayuri. Akon (the guy with the horns) is the one to answer the call as he tells the 12th squad member that their captain has left to Hueco Mundo to do research. Judging from the young Shinigami’s response, Mayuri seems to have taken a liking to using the Garganta to hunt for research materials. My guess would be that Mayuri is still busy analyzing the remains of Aizen’s palace and knowing him he doesn’t care about anything else. But apparently he has to give Matsumoto permission to visit Momo, who has to get organ regeneration courtesy of the 12th squad. After being attacked by several captain level Shinigami, it makes sense for her to still be hurt. Because of the regeneration taking place, people can’t really just pop in. Akon decides to tell Matsumoto that she has to wait to visit Hinamori, only to find she already up and left.

The scene then changes to the another captain that isn’t in his office or doing any work. In a small cave, which seems similar to the one we saw during one of the minus chapters where Hyourinmaru resided, we find Hitsugaya training. After what he did to Hinamori during his previous fight, he realizes that he needs to become stronger in order to prevent something like that from happening again. If he were to control his Bankai better, it would be for the best according to his thoughts. With Kyouraku having revealed that Hitsugaya could become more powerful than he himself is, Ukitake’s words on there not being a being to replace Genryuusai, and Hitsugaya’s popularity, this suggests that Hitsugaya is preparing for just that. While he is training himself, he is watched over by his vice-captain…

Moving forward

Congratulations Gin, you managed to screw someone even after dying… poor Hisagi…

Matsumoto stands outside the cavern where her captain is training. She realizes that everyone around her is moving forward, in spite everything that happened. Hitsugaya is trying to become stronger in order to protect Hinamori, Hisagi and Renji decided to become stronger as well in order to surpass their (former) captains, while she has yet to decide.
Renji is probably ashamed that he wasn’t capable of defeating any of the Espada, while Byakuya was able to defeat the seventh and zero Espada. My guess is that he feels that he didn’t help at all, so he is trying to improve his Bankai’s ability to ensure he can be of help next time something like this happens.
Hisagi, however, is probably honing the skills that Tosen has taught him. Even though Tosen had betrayed him and the rest of his squad, the old Tosen came back for a short moment before being blown up by Aizen. But in order to preserve the justice Tosen had (/pretended to have) and the lessons Hisagi learned from him, he has decided to take up his responsibilities. Perhaps Hisagi is asking Renji for help to obtain his own Bankai so he can take up a captain’s position. Which leaves us with the last of one more vice-captain that has to show us what she’ll do.

Matsumoto thinks about everything Gin’s done for her and what he left behind after dying, which was practically nothing. Gin left her behind, more than once, but did all of that for her sake. For this same reason, he left her nothing to remember him by. He knew that Matsumoto wouldn’t be able to move on if she was clinging on to him, which is why he kept her away from him for all this time. The fact that Gin was able to see this in her is something Matsumoto is grateful for as she can now move on with her life. I have no idea what happened to Gin’s body, nor whether Matsumoto understands why Gin did what he did, all that we know is that Matsumoto has decided to move on.

Revival

They had nothing better to do than to stand around Ichigo’s bed for about a month…

The scene changes to Orihime, Rukia, Chad, and Ishida standing over Ichigo’s bed. We find Ichigo awake and well as Orihime screams out in joy. Ichigo is surprised to find himself back in his own room as Rukia tells him he’s been out for an entire month. Meanwhile, Orihime is embarrassed by the fact that she was the only one to let out a cry of joy -what would you expect, with Ishida, Chad, and Rukia of all people…- as she is muttering to herself in shame.
Ichigo, however, is more concerned by the fact that he’s been out cold for almost an entire month. He then remembers that he sacrificed his powers in order to stop Aizen and that he has yet to tell his friends. But Rukia explains that Urahara already told them everything. Though Rukia is somewhat troubled by this, Ichigo tries to comfort her by changing the subject to his representative Shinigami title. But as usual with Ichigo and Rukia, the diversion doesn’t help.

Rukia then explains the stages of the power loss. First, Ichigo would experience great pain and a loss of consciousness due to losing a part of himself. It somehow even reversed the time that Ichigo spent in the Dangai. This latter one was a bit of an overkill if you ask me, but it is a good excuse to explain why Ichigo’s hair is short again. It’s overkill because it wouldn’t really matter if Ichigo was three months older, not really. But with the fact that everything the spiritual body experiences is transferred to the body, it might be better to keep both of them in sync to prevent the shock of suddenly aging three months.

With the first stage set and done, we get to the second stage. Ichigo’s spiritual power has settling once more, going from off the charts and transforming Ichigo’s body, to restoring his own body and preparing to completely disappear. As Rukia tells Ichigo all of this, he isn’t surprised at all. Zangetsu did tell him of the consequences, so there wasn’t much of a surprise there. His friends are shocked at the fact that Ichigo is so calm about it, but a look in Ichigo’s eyes suggests that there’s something bothering him. He then tells his friends he wants to go outside.

Parting ways

A touching moment… which should’ve been ruined by Kon’s perverseness. Where is he?

As Ichigo steps out of his house, he sees the town he saved from imminent destruction. But something’s different. Where he once felt spiritual energies all around him, he now senses nothing. He then turns to Rukia as she is starting to fade away in his eyes. With the last of Ichigo’s spiritual powers disappearing, he will no longer be able to interact with ghosts and Shinigami, which he could do for as long as he can remember. Now that he woke up from his slumber, the last bits of his spiritual powers are starting to fade away, and with it the ability to see and hear one of his most important friends, if not the most important one: Rukia.

Rukia notices the last bits of Ichigo’s powers fading away as she bids Ichigo farewell. Ichigo knows they must part ways and probably feels a bit sad that he didn’t have the time for a proper farewell. Rukia sees Ichigo’s saddened face and mocks Ichigo for being so depressed as she can still see him whenever she wants. But they both know that it isn’t the same as they become silent once more. Ichigo then asks Rukia to give all the other Shinigami his best, to which she agrees. Ichigo then looks at Rukia for one last time as she completely vanishes from Ichigo’s gaze. We then see the back of Ichigo’s head, looking at the sky as he thanks Rukia for one last time, bringing this arc to an end and beginning the two week hiatus…

I’ll be honest with you guys, I didn’t like this chapter. This chapter felt like one of those Anime episodes where they wrap everything up in a single episode because they already caught up to the Manga but couldn’t proceed due to the story catching up too much (Hitman Reborn being one of the recent examples). The only redeeming parts of this chapter were the scene with Genryuusai and Byakuya, which makes me laugh every time I read it for some reason, and the fact that Ukitake and Genryuusai are doing fine. The rest was just mediocre, bad even.

Aizen being freed from the seal Urahara placed on him, only to be sealed in a new one so he could be trialed made little sense at all. It only leaves room for someone to free Aizen from his prison, though that would be too obvious. They should’ve just kept him in the original seal until they could separate him from the Hougyoku or just indefinitely. But I guess that having Aizen sit in place for 20.000 years can be considered to be a suitable judgment as well -if it wasn’t for the immortality, that is-.

The part where Genryuusai scolded Kenpachi, Byakuya, and Shunsui was rather cliché, though Byakuya’s behavior was surprising yet borderline in character, which made it funnier to me. Genryuusai surviving and losing one arm was somewhat of a surprise. Honestly, I never expected him to die, but I expected him to stay out of commission for at least a longer period than 10 days. Ukitake sitting outside of the barracks was a simple way of showing Ukitake is fine. After months of agonizing whether he was still alive or not, I’m just glad to see he’s up to his usual good-natured behavior.

The part with the 12th division served little purpose. It only confirmed that Momo survived the onslaught brought on to her by the captains and that Mayuri is still overly excited with his Garganta technology. It could’ve been skipped, unless you’re an Akon fan, I guess…
The part with Matsumoto was a simple way of concluding some things as she is familiar with most of the characters that still had to be covered. She revealed that Renji and Hisagi have started to improve themselves, same as her captain Hitsugaya. Hitsugaya’s training was to be expected, but it feels as if this part was stretched for Hitsugaya fans. Matsumoto thinking back on Gin was also a bit out of place in my opinion. Yes, she loved Gin very much and Gin loved her too, we know, we know. But to me their story already ended the moment Ichigo arrived a couple of chapters back. Then again, this Deicide arc did revolve around Gin for a major part, so I guess I understand why Kubo wanted to show this so much.

Then came the strangest part of the chapter: Ichigo woke up one month after beating Aizen and he’s surrounded by four of his friends. Honestly, it would’ve made more sense if only Rukia and Kon were there, and the others were called upon after Ichigo woke up. Even his sisters would’ve made more sense than Orihime, Rukia, Chad, and Ishida standing in Ichigo’s room one month after he fainted. Orihime is obsessed enough to visit Ichigo every day, but Chad and Ishida just aren’t the types to do something like that. But for story purposes, everyone is conveniently there. Rukia already has all the answers to Ichigo’s power loss, which is attributed to Urahara and the month’s worth of time they have been waiting, which I can live with. I’ll get to Rukia and Ichigo’s farewell in just a bit, first let me wrap up this rant.

As you may have noticed in this 622 word rant in the overview, I’m not too thrilled about the content of this week’s chapter. I just didn’t like this week’s chapter. It just had that Anime “wrap-up even though the story isn’t over” kind of feel to it, which I personally hate. Luckily this isn’t really the end for Bleach, so hopefully Kubo will start up a new arc that washes away this chapter’s bitter aftertaste. Now on to the most illogical part of this chapter, in this week’s ‘thing to make your head spin’.

Ichigo and Rukia had a rather endearing farewell at the end of this week’s chapter. They exchanged their final words as they wouldn’t be able to see each other until Ichigo dies and Rukia comes to reap his soul. If only there was a way for them to interact in spite of this… You may already see where I’m going with this, or maybe you don’t, in either case, here’s this week’s headspinner, which isn’t even much of a headspinner:

Gigai anyone?  

There will be a time skip, either a short one where Ichigo gets used to the fact that all his friends are able to see ghosts while he can’t, or a longer one where everyone is given the time to grow in power. Personally, I’m hoping for a longer time skip, even though it’s been done by Naruto a couple of years ago and One Piece just recently. Then again, I can imagine that there will be a time skip of a month or so, where Ichigo is bummed out by his loss of powers. He will then go to his father to ask him what happened to him, which will be the start of a new arc about Isshin and the way he ended up in Karakura town as a father of three.

That’s it for this week’s review. Not a very good one in my opinion, but that’s because I just didn’t feel this week’s chapter. 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. Don’t forget to rate this week’s chapter either. I wonder how this chapter will fare, considering that last week’s chapter was better than this one and it only got a 4.6… Anyways, with a two week hiatus, it is rather hard for me to write Bleach reviews . Good thing I wanted to review the 600th chapter of One Piece . Without Bleach next week, I might actually do it for real. Maybe I’ll see you guys next week (assuming you read One Piece as well), if not. I’ll see you guys again in a couple of weeks!

 

 

 

Click on the picture above to rate this week’s chapter, and as a reminder here’s what the ratings are:
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

Kuroi:
Thanks for the review Underscore Mask ! Amusing and very good as always. Forgive my spelling/grammar errors, I am typing it very fast by the lack of time.
Nah, I know I am commenting a bit late but nevertheless that spinner deserves a theory. Too good that Kubo decided that there is never going to be another BLEACH chapter without a cliffhanger again.
—– Is this sudden cry of pain made by Ichigo part of the Mugetsu, or could the Spirit King have a hand in this?——
Ok, before we make assumptions let’s state the facts we already know : Ichigo has just used Mugetsu and he has lost his shinigami (but not his hollow ?) powers and he is now a soul outside of his body, the last panel suggests that Ichigo is being “overwhelmed” (oh the lack of a better word) by reiatsu seeing the design of the force that made him collapse, also seeing that he had put his hand into his neck he seems to be a sort of suffocating, he is the only one here who does that, he has several vc-captain level people around him and a minute before he was talking to Urahara. I don’t know if I have forgot something. Probably the fact that this event was triggered while he was talking to his nakama, but this must be a coincidence. Let’s go to the theories.
At first I thought it was something simple, Ichigo is now a powerless soul outside of his body. Checking back, even before the SS arc during Urahara’s training, we know that souls out of their material body feel sick and weak even having difficulties at breathing (chapter 59). Well, that alone of course would have not been enough to make Ichigo collapse but we should not forget that atm he is surrounded by his nakama, who are strong enough to put them in vc level of power (well most of them). So Ichigo is down because he can’t stand his nakama reiatsu. See, as they start running towards him, Ichigo suffers more and more. This is the writter’s way to make Ichigo’s friend learn that he is powerless. Or is it ?
Well, that this what I believed but now, after having some second thoughts and hearing some other opinions, I am not so sure. It somehow seems as a drastic moment. If it was that Ichigo couldn’t simply stand his nakama’s reiatsu I don’t think that Kubo would have portrayed it that dramatic and by such an extensive suffering.
There’s another -cracky- theory, that has to do with your “suggestion” about the Spirit King having something to do in this, even though indirectly.
Kubo is going to introduce the Royal Guards in the next chapters. Probably, they are right now opening a gate from the Royal Realm to Soul Society using their Key or another unknown way. Such an event of course, causes huge amount of reiatsu to burst through the Soul Society. But, since the Royal Realm is the Realm of Reason and not of reiatsu, no one there can feel it. No one except Ichigo, who once stood in a dimension similar to one of RR. He is not the only one who can feel that huge turn of events but the fact that he is now powerless makes him suffering to the max.
Yeah, don’t laugh Underscore Mask. I know that’s a bit far-fetched and probably a wishful theory but it’s not like you have never heard cracky theories again, do you ? Joking aside, it probably is something unknown to us, neither hollowfication, nor mere collapsing by reiatsu. I am pretty sure that it has something to do with Mugetsu and the fact that Ichigo is powerless. Maybe the repercussions of the use of FGT is something more than losing all of your abilities. Maybe it a huge and drastic change of Ichigo’s inner world. I want to know what Isshin and Urahara have to say about that.
We will soon learn, or I should better say you will soon learn. I am taking a break from Bleach for a couple of weeks for some “professional” reasons. As much as having no chapter to read for some weeks sucks, it would be good to have 3 or 4 chapters to read when I return. So cya then Underscore Mask.
PS : oh yeah, you’ll be always the Underscore Mask for me…:P

Too bad your post was almost entirely on the headspinner, which I don’t meddle with . But I like the thoughts you posted. I only have trouble with you calling me The Underscore Mask. I can’t live up to such an impressive title :(… To think you won’t be reading Bleach for a couple of weeks for professional reasons and there being a hiatus during the same period… are you Kubo? O_O

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~ by The Underscore on October 8, 2010.

10 Responses to “The Underscore’s Bleach review 423”

  1. Awesome review as always! I don’t think this is the end for Bleach. In fact, I think that Kubo could expand this series into a never ending story given the abundance of characters available. There’s times where I have to look up names to remember them. That’s how many characters he has. There is an infinite amount of potential to this story. Bleach isn’t quite over yet, I hope.

  2. RON!!!! :O :O :O

    -Regains compsure- Anyways, Ron took the words right out of my mouth… >___> Great breakdown, and I’ll see ya in two weeks, you lazy lug! 😄 😄

    Advertisment: Invisible (My newest fanfic) is out, and I’d really like some comments. So, please leave feedback on it’s page. Thank you! =)

  3. @broken1i: RON!!! O_O
    Glad you enjoyed the read ;).
    Bleach should still have plenty to offer, just going by the characters that are available. I’m really curious what Kubo will do next, but I’m with you on Bleach not being over just yet… hopefully.

    @noneatencookie:
    I KNOW! RON!!! I still can’t believe my eyes! :p

    I’d love to tell you I’ve been sitting around for the past few days, but I’ve already made some preparations for a One Piece review. That’s why I haven’t replied until now. But I’ll see if I can give some feedback to your fanfic soon, I’m just a little busy at the moment :(.

  4. Reviewing One Piece you say!? awesome! if you can, you should try to do those more often. i know that probably wont happen, but its nice to dream…

    anyway, as for the chapter; meh. i didnt hate it as much as the last one, but it still felt like a lackluster ending to what started out as a truly epic arc. Orihime still shows no sign of improvement, but i ranted enough about that last chapter, and im starting to stop caring anyway. the last moment between ichigo and rukia was the only thing that saved this chapter for me. if nothing else, kubo knows how to tug at the heartstrings. i.. dont really know why she couldnt get a gigai, but maybe she has been called back to SS and wont be back for awhile(read: the next arc). anyway, now that we really are done with this arc, i look back at this “war”, and i cant help but notice how apparently none of what happened really mattered. we are right back to the status quo, only difference is whats happening with aizen and gin. i hope something happens with the arrancar, if only because this was all a waste of time otherwise. and no one died. No. One. DIED! nice “war” there kubo. have you read one piece lately? maybe you could take a few hints from there on “how to do a REAL war”. just the fact that no one died in this “war” proves that he never will kill off a good guy, and that kills 90% of my interest in this series, there are no consequences for the heros. ever. its not realistic.
    anyway, nice review as always!
    P.S. who is this Ron guy you are all talking about? i dont know him.

  5. @takashid:
    Well, you’re in luck now. Check this site for a two chapter review for One Piece by yours truly ;). (Mind you, it’s LOOOOONG)

    I still don’t like this chapter at all. Personally, I think this is one of the worst chapters in the past two arcs. Besides the fact that no one died, it was wrapped up too easily. Sure, Yamamoto lost an arm, but after using a sacrificial technique… Still, Kubo could’ve at least killed a couple of fodder Shinigami by using some fodder Arrancar or something. Now there’s only a couple of dead humans amongst which our working class hero whose name will always remain a mystery.

    Speaking of mysteries: Ron is the one who practically forced me to post my reviews on this site (:p). He goes by the name of broken1i and you may know him from a couple of reviews/breakdowns he’s done here on WordonMars. Maybe he’ll find reviewer island again soon, and start posting reviews here again soon (get the hint Ron? ;)).

  6. @The Underscore:
    pretty sweet review and I hope your right on the 2 extra arcs it would be kinda of nice to see hisagi and renji become captains or even some new captains to replace the empty slots. when i saw the ending it was pretty good then I went to church Sunday and prayed that it would continue well we will see in two weeks i guess.

    @broken1i:
    When did you come back on mars nice to see your again???

    Sam’s 3 Questions:???

    1) If there is a new arc what kinda of enemy do you think they will face?

    2) How long of a time skip will there be?

    3)(0pinion) What 3 people would you like to fill the captains spots?

    [Sam’s thought] do you think it’s possible for them to send ichigo to a soul reaper academy to regain his powers would be pretty interesting. (Your Thoughts)

  7. It must be green eggs and ham because it’s s-a-doublem-y aka sam_i_am

    @The Underscore:
    sorry that should of went in the begging of my 1st post it been a habit everywhere for me recently please forgive me.

  8. @sam_i_am:

    For a habit of posting that line at the beginning of your posts, you seem to have forgotten it a little bit too easily :p. Just don’t make it a habit to post your introduction in a second post ;).

    Anyway, glad you enjoyed the review. Whether there’s going to be two more arcs or not is something I still can’t confirm. But we’ll find out sooner or later, I guess.

    On to the questions you posted:
    My guess is that the new enemy to arise will be Hollows. More specifically, Vasto Lordes that had so much power they could actually avoid Aizen. Something tells me that there’s supposed to be some sort of balance here. For every overpowered Shinigami/Captain, there should be an overpowered Hollow. I believe that during the flashback with Orihime’s brother (WAAAAY back) we saw some giant Hollow who turned him into a Hollow. Maybe he’ll be the one to show up as the next foe.

    If there’s going to be a time-skip, I’m guessing it won’t be longer than a month. But I wouldn’t mind it being a year or longer, giving Soul Society the time to reinstate the Gotei 13 to their full glory.

    The three people I would like to see taking up the captain spots would have to be Shinji, Kensei, and Rose. Basically as their old squads are now vacant. Then again, Shinji would decline, Kensei’s fate is still unknown, and Rose would only agree if he’s forced… Guess I can’t really say :). Maybe there’s going to be one or two new characters to take up the captain spots.

    As for sending Ichigo to Shinigami-school: I wouldn’t mind seeing him learn a couple of Kidou while trying to regain Zangetsu. But Ichigo isn’t someone to take the scenic route to power…

  9. Hi all! Epic review for an semi epic chapter, Lol! No seriously, everything was pretty cool and although I have a few issues with the way Kubo wrapped somethings up, I’m just happy that this long ass arc is over. It went on for ages.

    At any rate, I have a theory about the next arc that relates to what Kuroi (A.k.a. KUBO…no, kiding) was suggesting. According to Kuroi:

    Kubo is going to introduce the Royal Guards in the next chapters. Probably, they are right now opening a gate from the Royal Realm to Soul Society using their Key or another unknown way. Such an event of course, causes huge amount of reiatsu to burst through the Soul Society. But, since the Royal Realm is the Realm of Reason and not of reiatsu, no one there can feel it. No one except Ichigo, who once stood in a dimension similar to one of RR. He is not the only one who can feel that huge turn of events but the fact that he is now powerless makes him suffering to the max.

    Now, I think Kuroi had a good point because Kubo never went into detail about a certain form of training that Ichigo and obviously Isshin went through: Jinzen. From what Isshin (and the Bleach Wiki) said, This method is the only way to carry on a proper conversation with one’s Zanpakutō. One places their sword over their lap and takes a meditative pose and then forces their mind to become one with the Zanpakutō.

    In this form, one can call out the true form of the powers of their Zanpakutō. This form is something that Soul Society has worked out over the thousands of years since its formation. It is entirely about speaking with one’s sword. This advanced form of training is far different from attaining abilities by force. In this form it is about entering a state of calm to enter the inner world of the Zanpakutō and engage them there. In this state a wielder will have to fight their Zanpakutō spirit in order to attain access to new abilities, the Zanpakutō spirit does not want to teach these moves and engage the wielder in a battle the likes of which has never taken place before.

    Now I’m sure a majority of the other captains have practiced Jinzen on their own, but to what extent? From the results of Ichigo and Isshin’s training, I suggest that they fully mastered the art of Jinzen during their training and in the end, used their final technique and lost their powers.

    Now my theory is that in the next arc, we find out that the Royal Guard is a force consisting of Shinigami that have MASTERED the art of Jinzen and as a result, are strong enough to guard the Spirit King and join the Royal Guard. We don’t know anything about Isshin and Jinzen in detail, so for all we know Isshin was a member of the RG and had to use his final technique to protect them all from some great evil which in turn left him powerless and as a reward, they granted him a new life where he met Masaki. Thisexplains why Ichigo might be the only one capable of sensing the RG when they appear, supposing he will ever sense anything at all anyway. I know my theory is all over the place, but this theory just hit me so I’m trying to build it up as best as I can.

    I also think Ichigo’s and Isshin’s zanpakuto share a lot in common if not a history because A: they both use Getsuga Tensho, B: both must have gave them the gift of immense strength. If you think back to Isshin’s battle with Aizen in Chapter 398 and 401, Isshin tossed Aizen about like a ragdoll and thus pushed the hougyoku to transform him. At that point, we had no idea just how powerful Isshin was, but we did know that he was strong enough to defeat Aizen’s shinigami self although Isshin wasn’t as strong as he used to be. So, I assume that when Ichigo gets his powers back, he’ll still maintain that crazy ass strength from before, or at least he’ll be as strong as his father.

    I also think that the mastery of Jinzen differs between shinigami, I don’t think all of them have the same skills as Ichigo and Isshin, but they probably possess as much strength as the two since all of them are in the same “realm of Reason.”

    Overall, Ichigo and Isshin mastered Jinzen and reached the relam of reason, but both lost their powers and while Isshin has some if not all his powers back, he plans to help Ichigo regain his. During this period of training, the Royal Guard will come into the story and all of them will have mastered their Jinzen and explain how only those who have actually mastered Jinzen are allowed into the Royal Guard. (By the way, I’m not saying that great captains like Yamamoto or Byakuya can’t or won’t master their Jinzen, but their interests are probably in Soul Society and not the Royal Guard.) At this point, some crazy powerful antagonists is introduced and only Ichigo can beat them blah blah-blah….In conclusion, that’s my horribly constructed theory. Sorry about that.

  10. @wilborn:

    The fact that we’ve finally come to an end with the Arrancar arc after so many years is a good thing. But looking at the amount of time spent on the arc, this ending just feels a bit rushed.

    As for your prediction. It certainly centers around Jinzen :). We’ve seen Jinzen before during the Arrancar arc, before Hitsugaya, Matsumoto, Ikkaku, and Yumichika were attacked before Orihime was kidnapped. So Jinzen is known to at least all Shinigami who have obtained their Shikai. Something even tells me that it’s impossible for Yamamoto not to have mastered the art of Jinzen, as he’s in a league of his own. If it weren’t for the backfiring of his Zanpakutou (almost literally) he probably would have been able to go toe to toe with Aizen even in his final stage (he’d be using his Bankai, of course).

    Though you mention a couple of interesting ideas in your theory, Ichigo would still be the last one to sense the Royal Guard. But who knows what Kuroi, I mean, Kubo (:p) is planning to do with Bleach starting next week. But keep posting your theories, though I haven’t replied until now (sorry, been a little busy) I did enjoy reading it. So be sure to give any more theories you may have.

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