The Underscore’s Bleach review 431


431 Welcome to our Execution 3

The last Bleach chapter of 2010 (excluding possible internet leaks for the next Jump) presents us with “Welcome to our Execution 3”. Continuing the line of the last two chapters, this chapter progresses the story at a steady pace. However, in spite of the story progressing a little, this week’s chapter couldn’t help but introduce a couple of new characters and concepts, making the chapter’s content a bit smaller that we could’ve hoped for. But more on that in a bit. With 2010 coming to an end, I have to get back to something I mentioned a couple of reviews back: The review headers.

Header submissions
I ask those of you who (hopefully) have been working on the headers to do the following:

Upload your image to Photobucket/Imageshack/Deviantart or any other free image hosting site.

Send me a PM (if you are on Mangahelpers), or post (WordPress members) me the link to that image, referring to what the image is for (e.g.: Review header: http://i1195.photobucket.com/albums/…eachReview.png).

I would kindly ask you to send in your submissions before the seventh of January of 2011

As a reminder of what I expect to see from the headers:
The picture holds the name of the section
The picture depicts something related to Bleach
Originality is appreciated, but if you can’t think of anything you could always color/edit the existing headers.

Back to the current review
Anyways, chapter 431. Thanks go out to Binktopia/Mangastream for their scanlation. On to the chapter ratings for the previous two chapters an last week’s poll!

 

Bleach chapter 429, Welcome to our Execution, rated by 32 voters gets an average score of:

7.1

Great

Bleach chapter 430, Welcome to our Execution 2, rated by 33 voters gets an average score of:

7.7

Great

Last week I asked you what your thoughts were about Ishida losing his right arm~~’s functionality… Fine, I thought Ishida’s arm was cut off, can you really blame me?… Anywho, the poll was on this subject as well, so here’s what you guys thought about the loss of the arm:

For one, no one felt that Ishida deserved the damage he received for being caught off guard.
One voter only got more annoyed by Orihime’s incapability of pulling out her Santen Kesshun. Though the Santen Kesshun is a rather overpowered ability in a certain sense, she could still use it…
Tied with two votes each, there are two voters who couldn’t understand why Ishida had to lose his arm -I’m eager to know how serious they were about picking this option – and two who were hoping Ishida doesn’t have to go through the rest of Bleach with a single arm. With Ishida’s arm still attached, I’d say all four of these have nothing to worry about anymore.
Then we had 10 heartless voters. Five of which just plain didn’t care and five who only saw the upside of Ishida’s injury as it means more Ryuuken. How cruel can you guys be?
Seven voters were just as cruel, thinking this is a great way to balance for the time Ishida lost his left arm to Ulquiorra. Really, how heartless could you guys be. Luckily, the majority of the voters are… also rather cruel.
Most of the voters, all fourteen of them, couldn’t help but think that this doesn’t mean that Ishida won’t be getting back his arm. Really, you monsters, to be so heartless…(says the guy who came up with the poll options ).

Redundant

To read this review, please turn off your screen, then turn it on by pressing the button 7 times…

Ichigo was welcomed by the Xcution receptionist on the phone. After some inner turmoil, Ichigo decided to take up Kuugo on his offer and dialed the number on the card. After being greeted, Ichigo is told to hang up. But after doing so, he has to add 00800 to the end and call that same number trice, each with differing conditions. All this for the sole purpose of speaking to Ginjou Kuugo. Personally, I’d do one of two things if it were this redundant to speak to someone. The first, most likely, thing I would do is not bother calling at all, as I would think this to be too much of a hassle just to talk to an annoying guy. The other thing I would consider doing is going through the entire process, getting the dude on the line, and telling him to call me seven times, of which the first six times he has to do something annoying like hanging up after hearing the first tone and whatnot. But Ichigo isn’t in such a creative mood right now.

After undergoing the torture of modern communication using cell phones, Ichigo finally gets in contact with Kuugo. Ichigo tells Kuugo that it was a pain in the ass to reach him, but Kuugo tells him he has his reasons for making it so difficult. Ichigo then tells Kuugo that he wants to speak with him, which Kuugo obviously expected as Ichigo went through all that trouble of contacting him.

Speaking of trouble, I can’t help but wonder why Kuugo would make it so hard to contact him. My first impression is that Kuugo was just messing with Ichigo while trying to see how desperate he really is right now. With everything Ichigo has done right now, Kuugo has a good impression of how far he can go with Ichigo when Ichigo’s being serious.
The second possibility is that Kuugo’s actually trying to remain hidden from someone or thing and that the multiple phone calls are for the purpose of making configurations to prevent any bugging of phone calls. Or maybe it is to ensure that human cell phones can connect to the type of phones used by, say, Shinigami. Either way, I’m hoping for Ichigo that he won’t have to bother calling Kuugo ever again .

Rejected

Didn’t Yoruichi and Rangiku teach you anything? Put some more cleavage into it when persuading Ichigo!

The scene changes to the following day where Orihime completely ignores the function of doors by climbing out a window while talking to Ichigo. Orihime -who still doesn’t have her hairpins on her as far as I can tell- asks Ichigo whether he knows what’s happened to Chad. Ichigo doesn’t know whether she’s referring to something at Chad’s work or him beating up some punks and asks her to tell him what she means. She then asks whether Ichigo knows how Chad’s doing, but he doesn’t know anything about that either.

Orihime then explains that she wanted to talk to Chad about Ishida’s current situation, but that she couldn’t find him at school as he didn’t show up. Ichigo’s surprised to hear that Chad wouldn’t come to school, which isn’t strange considering Chad shows up at school even after being hit by cars and whatnot (see chapter 8 or 9, I think). Because of Chad’s absence, Orihime figured that Ichigo might know what’s going on with him as they’re apparently still very close (so close that Ichigo hasn’t seen or spoken to him for at least three days even though Ishida has been attacked as well). But with Ichigo not knowing anything, Orihime decides to visit Chad’s house after school.

Orihime then starts growing a pair as she actually asks Ichigo to accompany her (took her long enough to get to that point). Too bad for her that she used up all her luck the day before, when she entered Ichigo’s room and he already offered to take her back home, as Ichigo declines. Ichigo tells her he’s too busy, as Orihime tries to find an excuse for her being rejected by saying it’s short notice and whatnot. She then tells Ichigo that she’ll inform him on Chad the next day, probably to see whether Ichigo would still want to speak to her. Annoying as Orihime can be at times, I can’t help but root for her a bit in the romance department . At least she’s making some progress, too bad for her Ichigo’s too thickheaded to notice. Hopefully her being more forward towards Ichigo is a sign of the long anticipated character development people have been anticipating.

Prayer

Please show up in the next chapter, Chad!!

Ichigo leaves Orihime behind as he can’t help but wonder whether something could’ve happened to Chad now as well. But he finds some comfort knowing that the steps he took to get some answers will be rewarded that evening. We find out that Kuugo told Ichigo on the phone to meet him the following day at an old building at 20:00 (or 8 p.m. if you prefer). At this meeting, Kuugo will listen to everything Ichigo has to say and even hints that Kuugo might be able to help him out.

We then find Orihime standing in front of Chad’s apartment. In spite of all the yelling and screaming, Chad still isn’t opening the door, meaning he isn’t home right now. Orihime then remembers what Ryuuken told her last night, how Ishida was probably targeted for being a human with special powers and that Chad or her will most likely be the first target. To think that Ryuuken actually didn’t mention the possibility that Chad has already been attacked before Ishida…

But Orihime doesn’t want to think about that, believing Chad to be just fine. She then leaves a bag of bread on Chad’s door and prays that Chad comes to school safely the next day. Though I doubt Chad would be getting in too much trouble without getting any screen time, I can’t help thinking that Chad is up to something right now. Like I mentioned before, Chad could’ve been attacked already. Heck, for all we know Chad even joined Xcution, same as what seems to be happening to Ichigo.

Why so serious?

Now, now Kuugo, if you don’t learn to tell time, Ichigo won’t play with you anymore

Ichigo arrives at the specified location at 19.57, finding the dirty apartment building Kuugo mentioned in his phone call. Just as Ichigo realizes that he’s found the place, he’s greeted by Kuugo. Kuugo teases Ichigo by saying that he’s five minutes early and must be serious. But with Ichigo being who he is, and mistrusting Kuugo at the same time, he points out he’s only three minutes early. Kuugo then asks Ichigo what he wants from him, suddenly reaching out to him and all. Ichigo then tells him that he wants help with what happened to Ishida. Kuugo then points out that Ichigo wants him to help find the culprit, even though Ichigo doesn’t trust him.

Ichigo tells Kuugo that he should be capable of doing something like that, basically because he can’t be a normal human for knowing about Ichigo and his father. Kuugo then actually says something that could have more to it that just the usual messing with Ichigo: “I wonder about that”. Looking back at the first chapter where Kuugo was introduced, we saw that he has a Shinigami substitute badge. Though this doesn’t have to mean anything about Kuugo’s origins, it might be that Kuugo’s situation is similar to Ichigo’s. Either way, Ichigo doesn’t care as he still doesn’t trust Kuugo. But they both know that Kuugo is the only one he can count on right now.

I know what you guys are probably wondering, as I wondered the same thing: Why wouldn’t Ichigo be able to count on someone else, more specifically, Urahara? Kuugo only presented some reason for Ichigo to be mad at Urahara, meeting his sister and not telling Ichigo about it, but he told Ichigo nothing new. My guess is that Ichigo knows how his surrounding would react to his cry for help. No matter how you cut it, Urahara would just try playing things off with his goofy behavior. His friends wouldn’t say it out loud, but Ichigo is plain useless and they can only keep him safe by keeping him out of the way. And his father is missing at the moment. This leaves us with Kuugo, who knows of Ichigo and his family’s secrets. Because of this, Ichigo decides to follow Kuugo into the dirty building.

Xcution office

If there’s something strange in your neighborhood… blame these guys

Ichigo enters the building with Kuugo and follows him into an elevator. Kuugo tells Ichigo that he wanted him to finish his request before coming. Ichigo explains that his father hasn’t come home since the request, but that he can take care of that later if Kuugo needs it. But Kuugo then tells Ichigo that he was just kidding, including the first time, and that he only used the request to get Ichigo’s attention. Ichigo can’t really believe that Kuugo would use something like that as a mere excuse, but Kuugo tells Ichigo to put his card into a device.

The elevator doors open to reveal a bar with three people inside. First we have the vague butler from a couple of chapters ago (told you I’d forget his name ) standing behind the bar cleaning a glass. Next we have what seems to be Kuugo’s sister (judging by the eyes and the way she’s sitting on the couch), a new character. She doesn’t have enough screen time for me to completely bash, err I mean, evaluate her as a character and design. But for some twisted reason, I’m glad that she doesn’t have such a typical female face for a Bleach character.
Finally, we have another new character. A boy/young man who is sitting on top of a table. First impression I got is that he’s going to be one of those typical silent kids who will do good in the character polls eventually. That’s right, other than Sasakibe’s evil twin, we now have Hitsugaya’s second cousin twice removed from his father’s mother’s side! I’m just hoping his hair won’t be white .

Luckily, Ichigo isn’t bothered by (filler cast) people and he ignores them. Instead, he can’t help but be curious about the room he just entered. Kuugo explained that they did some remodeling, sponsored by one of their richer members. But before Kuugo gets to what he can do to Ichigo, the main topic, he has to explain why Kuugo approached him.

The true purpose for Xcution coming to Ichigo is (yes, we all saw this coming) to restore Ichigo’s Shinigami powers! (How is this not the main topic of their conversation?)

Pretty good chapter this week. Kuugo finally revealed that he really is after restoring Ichigo’s powers, while Orihime is working on her own to look into Ryuuken’s hypothesis. Kuugo is finally starting to grow on me now that it’s confirmed that he will be working on restoring Ichigo’s powers. I don’t care if it is for his own (twisted) plans or not, I’m just glad to know Ichigo’s days of being useless are almost over. Too bad we still didn’t get any news on Chad, but at least we know he hasn’t been forgotten. Though Kuugo says they want to help Ichigo get his Shinigami powers back, you may notice he never guaranteed he could get it back (look at what he said during the conversation on the phone in this chapter). Guess that means there’s a good chance that it won’t work (it will of course, but you know, dramatic purposes and all). But that’s all for the next chapter.
I really have little else left to say about this chapter. The chapter was rather straightforward and all… Guess I might as well get to this week’s headspinner. I’ll even give you guys two headspinners, just to last you until the new year .

One thing I have to get into, as it crossed my mind only moments ago, is what we’ve seen from Xcution until now. Though some of these “new characters” are new from the Bleach perspective, they do show signs of being similar to existing Bleach characters. More specifically, Shinigami characters. What are the odds of these characters being Shinigami we know, but in different Gigai?

The second thing that I was wondering about has to do with Kuugo wanting to restore Ichigo’s powers. Kuugo specifically refers to Ichigo’s powers as Shinigami powers which can be considered as normal even if Ichigo had the powers of a Visored. However, Ichigo only obtained his Hollowfication abilities after he awakened his (own) powers under Urahara’s supervision. Does this mean Kuugo will be using a method to turn Ichigo into a Shinigami, or to revert the Mugetsu’s damage?

The next chapter will most likely revolve around Ichigo questioning Kuugo’s motives and doubting whether he should take back his powers. Either Kubo will decide to let Ichigo sit on it for a while, or to make a decision at the end of the chapter after he learns what needs to be done. In the meantime, we will find out what happened to Chad, most likely him having worked overtime and having to play in his band and thus not having enough time to get back in touch.

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’ve left you plenty of options to think about in the predictions, so make sure you come up with a couple of good ones . Don’t forget to rate this week’s chapter! I’ll see you guys again next year (2011)! Happy Holidays everyone!

 

 

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

1. I liked the read as usual
Regarding Yuzu’s reactions regarding Ichigo
As You mentioned it’s not normal to have Ichigo smiling, as i’ve seen others point out this is the same attitude he had in “memories in the rain”
The day before Masaki died(back then it was Orihime that commented he wasn’t his usual self)
so him smiling is him being tense or in a somewhat hopeless situation where he can’t do anything about what’s going on etc.
Also Regarding 430 Yuzu, I think it’s just she got to high hopes about Ichigo, I don’t think it’s necessary her having fallen for her brother. I believe it’s more of a looking at him as the “perfect” person, her role model(in a way though of causes she’s not him)
So she refuse to believe that her brother isn’t perfect(is a normal human not a superhero, prince on the white horse etc)
Finally you made the same mistake I and i believe the majority did regarding Ichigda’s wound
(take a second look at him on the ground he didn’t lose his arm)
anyway will be looking forward to your next review as usual
Stone said this on December 12, 2010 at 1:58 PM (edit)

@Stone:
Glad it was entertaining, hopefully this new review was to your enjoyment as well .
The matter with Yuzu, I doubt she’s actually in love with Ichigo as much as she just idolizes him as a hero, like you said.
Ishida’s injury… He lost his right arm~~’s functionality… See, I wasn’t wrong .

2. about that Xcution that ichigo just called, i have discovered Kubo’s secret. Xcution is…
http://www.xcution.com/
Ichigo’s new job. Ginjou gave him the contact number listed on the site. Ikumi is gonna be pissed! see, Ginjou isn’t actually a suspicious guy, he’s just a humble business man recruiting people for his company. Urahara is one of his rivals, so he’s trying to make ichigo stay away from him. After seeing ichigo’s strength in taking down the bag thief, Ginjou knew that ichigo would be a great asset to the company, and has been trying to recruit him. kubo even foreshadowed this by mentioning ichigo changing jobs so often!
takashid said this on December 12, 2010 at 4:59 PM (edit)
3. Okay, so now as to these chapters themselves, i have to get a few things out of the way.
First of all ORIHIME! just when i have no problems with her, she does something else. Underscore, you know that i have complained in the past about wanting to see Orihime change after what happened in hueco mundo. ive ranted about how annoying her lack of character growth is before, so i won’t go over that again. So, when i saw the scene with her at the start of Execution2, i was just disgusted. she really hasn’t changed at all!! Not. One. Bit. Her character is literally the same as the orihime we met back in the Sora arc! huh!?
the only difference is that now her unrealistic fantasy is a little more on the sexy side instead of the weird. But that scene just really killed my love for Orihime. It’s been over 400 chapters and Orihime has apparently dodged any kind of character development! and knowing kubo’s pacing, telling me to “be patient and wait” doesn’t cut it anymore. really, it’s as if the Lust arc and everything else in HM never happened. just why? as if we needed everything that happened in the Arrancar arcs to become even MORE pointless. ugh. ive ranted again, sorry.
anyway, the guy who cut ishida seems interesting, and im still holding out hope that mr butler will be similar to wrath from FMA, because Wrath was an unparalleled badass, which this manga could use right now. Ichigo is, of course, once again being retarded and talks to strangers rather then simply wait for his dad to come back, talk to him, call him out on his secrets, and tell him about ginjou and Xcution. you know, like any sane, semi intelligent person would think to do.
Good review as always Underscore, looking foreword to the next one.
takashid said this on December 12, 2010 at 5:15 PM (edit)

Obviously Kuugo’s just trying to get Ichigo to work at his company. Ichigo’s perfect for the job… whatever it is .

As for Orihime’s character development… well… you know… LOOK BEHIND YOU!!!

Too bad, because you looked back, you missed the perfect explanation on how Orihime’s character development is there, yet unnoticeable……….. (anyone think takashid buys this?). But like I said in this week’s review, she’s somewhat grown a pair by asking Ichigo to go with her. Minor as it may be, it’s character development nonetheless…. (anyone think takashid buys this?).

As for the Bradley-cosplayer, it would be nice if he were to act like him as well. But judging from this chapter, I’d say he’s closer to One Piece’s Blueno from CP9 when it comes to behavior .


431 Welcome to our Execution 3

The last Bleach chapter of 2010 (excluding possible internet leaks for the next Jump) presents us with “Welcome to our Execution 3”. Continuing the line of the last two chapters, this chapter progresses the story at a steady pace. However, in spite of the story progressing a little, this week’s chapter couldn’t help but introduce a couple of new characters and concepts, making the chapter’s content a bit smaller that we could’ve hoped for. But more on that in a bit. With 2010 coming to an end, I have to get back to something I mentioned a couple of reviews back: The review headers.

Header submissions
I ask those of you who (hopefully) have been working on the headers to do the following:

Upload your image to Photobucket/Imageshack/Deviantart or any other free image hosting site.

Send me a PM (if you are on Mangahelpers), or post (WordPress members) me the link to that image, referring to what the image is for (e.g.: Review header: http://i1195.photobucket.com/albums/…eachReview.png).

I would kindly ask you to send in your submissions before the seventh of January of 2011

As a reminder of what I expect to see from the headers:
The picture holds the name of the section
The picture depicts something related to Bleach
Originality is appreciated, but if you can’t think of anything you could always color/edit the existing headers.

Back to current review
Anyways, chapter 431. Thanks go out to Binktopia/Mangastream for their scanlation. On to the chapter ratings for the previous two chapters an last week’s poll!

 

Bleach chapter 429, Welcome to our Execution, rated by 32 voters gets an average score of:

7.1

Great

Bleach chapter 430, Welcome to our Execution 2, rated by 33 voters gets an average score of:

7.7

Great

Last week I asked you what your thoughts were about Ishida losing his right arm~~’s functionality… Fine, I thought Ishida’s arm was cut off, can you really blame me?… Anywho, the poll was on this subject as well, so here’s what you guys thought about the loss of the arm:

For one, no one felt that Ishida deserved the damage he received for being caught off guard.
One voter only got more annoyed by Orihime’s incapability of pulling out her Santen Kesshun. Though the Santen Kesshun is a rather overpowered ability in a certain sense, she could still use it…
Tied with two votes each, there are two voters who couldn’t understand why Ishida had to lose his arm -I’m eager to know how serious they were about picking this option – and two who were hoping Ishida doesn’t have to go through the rest of Bleach with a single arm. With Ishida’s arm still attached, I’d say all four of these have nothing to worry about anymore.
Then we had 10 heartless voters. Five of which just plain didn’t care and five who only saw the upside of Ishida’s injury as it means more Ryuuken. How cruel can you guys be?
Seven voters were just as cruel, thinking this is a great way to balance for the time Ishida lost his left arm to Ulquiorra. Really, how heartless could you guys be. Luckily, the majority of the voters are… also rather cruel.
Most of the voters, all fourteen of them, couldn’t help but think that this doesn’t mean that Ishida won’t be getting back his arm. Really, you monsters, to be so heartless…(says the guy who came up with the poll options ).

Redundant

To read this review, please turn off your screen, then turn it on by pressing the button 7 times…

Ichigo was welcomed by the Xcution receptionist on the phone. After some inner turmoil, Ichigo decided to take up Kuugo on his offer and dialed the number on the card. After being greeted, Ichigo is told to hang up. But after doing so, he has to add 00800 to the end and call that same number trice, each with differing conditions. All this for the sole purpose of speaking to Ginjou Kuugo. Personally, I’d do one of two things if it were this redundant to speak to someone. The first, most likely, thing I would do is not bother calling at all, as I would think this to be too much of a hassle just to talk to an annoying guy. The other thing I would consider doing is going through the entire process, getting the dude on the line, and telling him to call me seven times, of which the first six times he has to do something annoying like hanging up after hearing the first tone and whatnot. But Ichigo isn’t in such a creative mood right now.

After undergoing the torture of modern communication using cell phones, Ichigo finally gets in contact with Kuugo. Ichigo tells Kuugo that it was a pain in the ass to reach him, but Kuugo tells him he has his reasons for making it so difficult. Ichigo then tells Kuugo that he wants to speak with him, which Kuugo obviously expected as Ichigo went through all that trouble of contacting him.

Speaking of trouble, I can’t help but wonder why Kuugo would make it so hard to contact him. My first impression is that Kuugo was just messing with Ichigo while trying to see how desperate he really is right now. With everything Ichigo has done right now, Kuugo has a good impression of how far he can go with Ichigo when Ichigo’s being serious.
The second possibility is that Kuugo’s actually trying to remain hidden from someone or thing and that the multiple phone calls are for the purpose of making configurations to prevent any bugging of phone calls. Or maybe it is to ensure that human cell phones can connect to the type of phones used by, say, Shinigami. Either way, I’m hoping for Ichigo that he won’t have to bother calling Kuugo ever again .

Rejected

Didn’t Yoruichi and Rangiku teach you anything? Put some more cleavage into it when persuading Ichigo!

The scene changes to the following day where Orihime completely ignores the function of doors by climbing out a window while talking to Ichigo. Orihime -who still doesn’t have her hairpins on her as far as I can tell- asks Ichigo whether he knows what’s happened to Chad. Ichigo doesn’t know whether she’s referring to something at Chad’s work or him beating up some punks and asks her to tell him what she means. She then asks whether Ichigo knows how Chad’s doing, but he doesn’t know anything about that either.

Orihime then explains that she wanted to talk to Chad about Ishida’s current situation, but that she couldn’t find him at school as he didn’t show up. Ichigo’s surprised to hear that Chad wouldn’t come to school, which isn’t strange considering Chad shows up at school even after being hit by cars and whatnot (see chapter 8 or 9, I think). Because of Chad’s absence, Orihime figured that Ichigo might know what’s going on with him as they’re apparently still very close (so close that Ichigo hasn’t seen or spoken to him for at least three days even though Ishida has been attacked as well). But with Ichigo not knowing anything, Orihime decides to visit Chad’s house after school.

Orihime then starts growing a pair as she actually asks Ichigo to accompany her (took her long enough to get to that point). Too bad for her that she used up all her luck the day before, when she entered Ichigo’s room and he already offered to take her back home, as Ichigo declines. Ichigo tells her he’s too busy, as Orihime tries to find an excuse for her being rejected by saying it’s short notice and whatnot. She then tells Ichigo that she’ll inform him on Chad the next day, probably to see whether Ichigo would still want to speak to her. Annoying as Orihime can be at times, I can’t help but root for her a bit in the romance department . At least she’s making some progress, too bad for her Ichigo’s too thickheaded to notice. Hopefully her being more forward towards Ichigo is a sign of the long anticipated character development people have been anticipating.

Prayer

Please show up in the next chapter, Chad!!

Ichigo leaves Orihime behind as he can’t help but wonder whether something could’ve happened to Chad now as well. But he finds some comfort knowing that the steps he took to get some answers will be rewarded that evening. We find out that Kuugo told Ichigo on the phone to meet him the following day at an old building at 20:00 (or 8 p.m. if you prefer). At this meeting, Kuugo will listen to everything Ichigo has to say and even hints that Kuugo might be able to help him out.

We then find Orihime standing in front of Chad’s apartment. In spite of all the yelling and screaming, Chad still isn’t opening the door, meaning he isn’t home right now. Orihime then remembers what Ryuuken told her last night, how Ishida was probably targeted for being a human with special powers and that Chad or her will most likely be the first target. To think that Ryuuken actually didn’t mention the possibility that Chad has already been attacked before Ishida…

But Orihime doesn’t want to think about that, believing Chad to be just fine. She then leaves a bag of bread on Chad’s door and prays that Chad comes to school safely the next day. Though I doubt Chad would be getting in too much trouble without getting any screen time, I can’t help thinking that Chad is up to something right now. Like I mentioned before, Chad could’ve been attacked already. Heck, for all we know Chad even joined Xcution, same as what seems to be happening to Ichigo.

Why so serious?

Now, now Kuugo, if you don’t learn to tell time, Ichigo won’t play with you anymore

Ichigo arrives at the specified location at 19.57, finding the dirty apartment building Kuugo mentioned in his phone call. Just as Ichigo realizes that he’s found the place, he’s greeted by Kuugo. Kuugo teases Ichigo by saying that he’s five minutes early and must be serious. But with Ichigo being who he is, and mistrusting Kuugo at the same time, he points out he’s only three minutes early. Kuugo then asks Ichigo what he wants from him, suddenly reaching out to him and all. Ichigo then tells him that he wants help with what happened to Ishida. Kuugo then points out that Ichigo wants him to help find the culprit, even though Ichigo doesn’t trust him.

Ichigo tells Kuugo that he should be capable of doing something like that, basically because he can’t be a normal human for knowing about Ichigo and his father. Kuugo then actually says something that could have more to it that just the usual messing with Ichigo: “I wonder about that”. Looking back at the first chapter where Kuugo was introduced, we saw that he has a Shinigami substitute badge. Though this doesn’t have to mean anything about Kuugo’s origins, it might be that Kuugo’s situation is similar to Ichigo’s. Either way, Ichigo doesn’t care as he still doesn’t trust Kuugo. But they both know that Kuugo is the only one he can count on right now.

I know what you guys are probably wondering, as I wondered the same thing: Why wouldn’t Ichigo be able to count on someone else, more specifically, Urahara? Kuugo only presented some reason for Ichigo to be mad at Urahara, meeting his sister and not telling Ichigo about it, but he told Ichigo nothing new. My guess is that Ichigo knows how his surrounding would react to his cry for help. No matter how you cut it, Urahara would just try playing things off with his goofy behavior. His friends wouldn’t say it out loud, but Ichigo is plain useless and they can only keep him safe by keeping him out of the way. And his father is missing at the moment. This leaves us with Kuugo, who knows of Ichigo and his family’s secrets. Because of this, Ichigo decides to follow Kuugo into the dirty building.

Xcution office

If there’s something strange in your neighborhood… blame these guys

Ichigo enters the building with Kuugo and follows him into an elevator. Kuugo tells Ichigo that he wanted him to finish his request before coming. Ichigo explains that his father hasn’t come home since the request, but that he can take care of that later if Kuugo needs it. But Kuugo then tells Ichigo that he was just kidding, including the first time, and that he only used the request to get Ichigo’s attention. Ichigo can’t really believe that Kuugo would use something like that as a mere excuse, but Kuugo tells Ichigo to put his card into a device.

The elevator doors open to reveal a bar with three people inside. First we have the vague butler from a couple of chapters ago (told you I’d forget his name ) standing behind the bar cleaning a glass. Next we have what seems to be Kuugo’s sister (judging by the eyes and the way she’s sitting on the couch), a new character. She doesn’t have enough screen time for me to completely bash, err I mean, evaluate her as a character and design. But for some twisted reason, I’m glad that she doesn’t have such a typical female face for a Bleach character.
Finally, we have another new character. A boy/young man who is sitting on top of a table. First impression I got is that he’s going to be one of those typical silent kids who will do good in the character polls eventually. That’s right, other than Sasakibe’s evil twin, we now have Hitsugaya’s second cousin twice removed from his father’s mother’s side! I’m just hoping his hair won’t be white .

Luckily, Ichigo isn’t bothered by (filler cast) people and he ignores them. Instead, he can’t help but be curious about the room he just entered. Kuugo explained that they did some remodeling, sponsored by one of their richer members. But before Kuugo gets to what he can do to Ichigo, the main topic, he has to explain why Kuugo approached him.

The true purpose for Xcution coming to Ichigo is (yes, we all saw this coming) to restore Ichigo’s Shinigami powers! (How is this not the main topic of their conversation?)

Pretty good chapter this week. Kuugo finally revealed that he really is after restoring Ichigo’s powers, while Orihime is working on her own to look into Ryuuken’s hypothesis. Kuugo is finally starting to grow on me now that it’s confirmed that he will be working on restoring Ichigo’s powers. I don’t care if it is for his own (twisted) plans or not, I’m just glad to know Ichigo’s days of being useless are almost over. Too bad we still didn’t get any news on Chad, but at least we know he hasn’t been forgotten. Though Kuugo says they want to help Ichigo get his Shinigami powers back, you may notice he never guaranteed he could get it back (look at what he said during the conversation on the phone in this chapter). Guess that means there’s a good chance that it won’t work (it will of course, but you know, dramatic purposes and all). But that’s all for the next chapter.
I really have little else left to say about this chapter. The chapter was rather straightforward and all… Guess I might as well get to this week’s headspinner. I’ll even give you guys two headspinners, just to last you until the new year .

One thing I have to get into, as it crossed my mind only moments ago, is what we’ve seen from Xcution until now. Though some of these “new characters” are new from the Bleach perspective, they do show signs of being similar to existing Bleach characters. More specifically, Shinigami characters. What are the odds of these characters being Shinigami we know, but in different Gigai?

The second thing that I was wondering about has to do with Kuugo wanting to restore Ichigo’s powers. Kuugo specifically refers to Ichigo’s powers as Shinigami powers which can be considered as normal even if Ichigo had the powers of a Visored. However, Ichigo only obtained his Hollowfication abilities after he awakened his (own) powers under Urahara’s supervision. Does this mean Kuugo will be using a method to turn Ichigo into a Shinigami, or to revert the Mugetsu’s damage?

The next chapter will most likely revolve around Ichigo questioning Kuugo’s motives and doubting whether he should take back his powers. Either Kubo will decide to let Ichigo sit on it for a while, or to make a decision at the end of the chapter after he learns what needs to be done. In the meantime, we will find out what happened to Chad, most likely him having worked overtime and having to play in his band and thus not having enough time to get back in touch.

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’ve left you plenty of options to think about in the predictions, so make sure you come up with a couple of good ones . Don’t forget to rate this week’s chapter! I’ll see you guys again next year (2011)! Happy Holidays everyone!

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

1. I liked the read as usual
Regarding Yuzu’s reactions regarding Ichigo
As You mentioned it’s not normal to have Ichigo smiling, as i’ve seen others point out this is the same attitude he had in “memories in the rain”
The day before Masaki died(back then it was Orihime that commented he wasn’t his usual self)
so him smiling is him being tense or in a somewhat hopeless situation where he can’t do anything about what’s going on etc.
Also Regarding 430 Yuzu, I think it’s just she got to high hopes about Ichigo, I don’t think it’s necessary her having fallen for her brother. I believe it’s more of a looking at him as the “perfect” person, her role model(in a way though of causes she’s not him)
So she refuse to believe that her brother isn’t perfect(is a normal human not a superhero, prince on the white horse etc)
Finally you made the same mistake I and i believe the majority did regarding Ichigda’s wound
(take a second look at him on the ground he didn’t lose his arm)
anyway will be looking forward to your next review as usual
Stone said this on December 12, 2010 at 1:58 PM (edit)

@Stone:
Glad it was entertaining, hopefully this new review was to your enjoyment as well .
The matter with Yuzu, I doubt she’s actually in love with Ichigo as much as she just idolizes him as a hero, like you said.
Ishida’s injury… He lost his right arm~~’s functionality… See, I wasn’t wrong .

2. about that Xcution that ichigo just called, i have discovered Kubo’s secret. Xcution is…
http://www.xcution.com/
Ichigo’s new job. Ginjou gave him the contact number listed on the site. Ikumi is gonna be pissed! see, Ginjou isn’t actually a suspicious guy, he’s just a humble business man recruiting people for his company. Urahara is one of his rivals, so he’s trying to make ichigo stay away from him. After seeing ichigo’s strength in taking down the bag thief, Ginjou knew that ichigo would be a great asset to the company, and has been trying to recruit him. kubo even foreshadowed this by mentioning ichigo changing jobs so often!
takashid said this on December 12, 2010 at 4:59 PM (edit)
3. Okay, so now as to these chapters themselves, i have to get a few things out of the way.
First of all ORIHIME! just when i have no problems with her, she does something else. Underscore, you know that i have complained in the past about wanting to see Orihime change after what happened in hueco mundo. ive ranted about how annoying her lack of character growth is before, so i won’t go over that again. So, when i saw the scene with her at the start of Execution2, i was just disgusted. she really hasn’t changed at all!! Not. One. Bit. Her character is literally the same as the orihime we met back in the Sora arc! huh!?
the only difference is that now her unrealistic fantasy is a little more on the sexy side instead of the weird. But that scene just really killed my love for Orihime. It’s been over 400 chapters and Orihime has apparently dodged any kind of character development! and knowing kubo’s pacing, telling me to “be patient and wait” doesn’t cut it anymore. really, it’s as if the Lust arc and everything else in HM never happened. just why? as if we needed everything that happened in the Arrancar arcs to become even MORE pointless. ugh. ive ranted again, sorry.
anyway, the guy who cut ishida seems interesting, and im still holding out hope that mr butler will be similar to wrath from FMA, because Wrath was an unparalleled badass, which this manga could use right now. Ichigo is, of course, once again being retarded and talks to strangers rather then simply wait for his dad to come back, talk to him, call him out on his secrets, and tell him about ginjou and Xcution. you know, like any sane, semi intelligent person would think to do.
Good review as always Underscore, looking foreword to the next one.
takashid said this on December 12, 2010 at 5:15 PM (edit)

Obviously Kuugo’s just trying to get Ichigo to work at his company. Ichigo’s perfect for the job… whatever it is .

As for Orihime’s character development… well… you know… LOOK BEHIND YOU!!!

Too bad, because you looked back, you missed the perfect explanation on how Orihime’s character development is there, yet unnoticeable……….. (anyone think takashid buys this?). But like I said in this week’s review, she’s somewhat grown a pair by asking Ichigo to go with her. Minor as it may be, it’s character development nonetheless…. (anyone think takashid buys this?).

As for the Bradley-cosplayer, it would be nice if he were to act like him as well. But judging from this chapter, I’d say he’s closer to One Piece’s Blueno from CP9 when it comes to behavior .

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~ by The Underscore on December 18, 2010.

4 Responses to “The Underscore’s Bleach review 431”

  1. Ah, Underscore, i always appreciate when you get around to answering my ran-comments, i mean comments! 😛 really, your reviews are great reads and a good source of stress relief for my Bleach problems. Two birds, one Review!
    “Hopefully her being more forward towards Ichigo is a sign of the long anticipated character development people have been anticipating.”

    I get the feeling this line was aiming at me… 🙂

    anyway, i buy it. a little. Her(You Know Who I”m Talking About) attitude still irritates, but even I, still angry at her, felt that burn when ichigo blew her off. Ouch! The fact that ichigo is so oblivious to her feelings and intentions even after all this time contributes to my anger at Orihime remaining a static character. Ichigo clearly isn’t interested, and its painful to watch Orihime suffer over her one sided love so continuously. the missing hairpins do give me hope, despite Orihime’s annoying personality. They just seem to scream plot point, and may be a sign of real change in her, something that hasn’t been seen since her talks with Ulquiorra

    Orihime in general likes to ignore reality. Her toughts about ichigo for one thing, but even here ith chad, she knows he may have already been attacked, but chooses not to do anything, and tells herself not to think that way. also, why didnt Orihime just track Chads reiatsu? or go to urahara and say “Ishida’s hurt, Chad may have already been attacked, and i could be the next target. Please, i need your help” Urahara’s suspicious sure, but he’s always helped out when shit gets real, and these attacks are very serious. Her attempt to find Chad just seems lazy to me when i consider those options.

    as for Xcution, im reserving judgment right now, but they dont look very promising so far. A nice big organization of walking deus ex machinas to restore the “ichi with powers” status quo. but itll be different this time! even though its practicly a cut out of the vizard intro, this is different! there human and stuff, different! thats what im hearing, and i dont buy it yet.

    P.S I think i know whats happened to Chad. He has been reunited with his long time lover. Him and her have had a long off on relationship, and right now they are “on”. Yes, Chad has been reunited with his old flame, Pool Of His Own Blood. She isn’t very faithful sadly, just the other day she had a fling with Ishida. Yet she has been with Chad from Soul Society to Hueco Mundo, and he just can’t quit her. :p 😛 😛

  2. @takashid:
    Well, I’ve been busy with work lately, so I didn’t have any means to answer your ran~~ err comment before the review last week. But that’s why I have useful sections such as the lost, but not forgotten section :).

    Believe it or not, that part on Orihime’s character development wasn’t solely aimed at you, though admittedly you did come to mind ;). As for Orihime sensing Chad’s reiatsu, has she really ever been able to sense anyone’s reiatsu besides Ichigo’s from a distance? Usually she only senses reiatsu when it’s close to her or while she’s using Santen Kesshun. So for all we know it’s not as much that she doesn’t do it so much as it’s that she can’t do it. Not going to Urahara may have something to do with the last known conversation she’s had with Urahara, where she was told that she was useless in the battle against Aizen.

    As for Chad being reunited with his fling, Pool of Blood, I certainly hope he’s gotten over her by now. I’d hate to see him with her again. She’s bad for him, both mentally and physically 😛

  3. I dont mind the comments not being answered right away. i completely understand being too busy for it, as long as they get answered eventually. I dont think that Orihime has any problems sensing reiatsu far away, at least its never been mentioned that she cant.. it feels like kubo is just trying to preserve the “old school Bleach” feel by making as little supernatural or superpowered things happen as possible. Andi had not thought of that as a reason for Orihime not going to Urahara, thats interesting, but if thats true then she seems even more childish. Staying away from the person who is their leadi ng authority on supernatural and has consistantly assisted them in the past just because he said some mean things before seems foolish, espically when it is happening in the midst of serious attacks. She doesnt know if Chad is dead in a ditch somewhere, so why is she doing nothing?
    i wont rant this time, just wanted to pop in here and say Merry Christmas! heres hoping for another year of great reviews and (hopefully) great chapters.

    about chad, …shes one of those clingy types. Her close personal friend Kubo has been helping her, giving her lots of alone time with Chad. though as i said, she recently cheated on him. spent a little time with Chad’s friend ishida :p

  4. @takashid:
    At least I got to reply before the end of this year ;).
    I suppose saying Orihime has trouble sensing Reiatsu from a distance is a rather meak observation. Especially considering the fact she sensed what happened to Chad before, I think. But at least this does preserve the “old school Bleach” feel you mentioned before.
    As for Chad. The newest chapter reveals that his fling has abandoned him for Ishida. Can’t say I feel bad for Chad, but I feel sorry for Ishida being caught in the middle :p.

    Anyways, I wish you a happy new year and I’ll see you in 2011 (maybe this weekend even ;)).

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