The Underscore’s Bleach review 436


436 The Time Discipline

To think I’ve become a STAR that’s been interviewed on Mangahelpers… maybe that’ll get me more readers . Anyways, enough about me. On to Bleach. We’re finally getting somewhere with this week’s chapter so I might as well get started with the review. Thanks to Mangastream and Binktopia for their scanlation as I will be using it in this week’s review.

 

Bleach chapter 435, Panic at the Dollhouse, rated by 12 voters gets an average score of:

5.4

Bad

With Riruka joining a long line of teachers before her, I was curious which of Ichigo’s teachers was your favorite. Apparently I had forgotten Kuukaku, but let’s face it, she had her brother do all the work. Besides that, it was a rather useless lesson in the end. Then again, the basis taught by Ganju might be the key to restoring Ichigo’s Shinigami powers… Anyways, on to the teachers that did make the list!

No one couldn’t choose, so no votes for that option.
No one voted for Hiyori either. In a way, she was a lousy teacher.
Isshin, oddly, didn’t get any votes either. Have people forgotten his great teachings during the mornings?
Riruka didn’t get much love either, but let’s face it, she’s a worse teacher than Hiyori.
Only one person seemed to appreciate the common teacher’s worth, voting for Ochi Misato. Be honest now, how many of you didn’t even know who Ochi Misato is?
Rukia didn’t fair all too well either. Only three voters saw the depth of details put into her drawings used in her teachings.
Coming in third, with six votes, there’s Yoruichi. Never shall we forget how she taught Ichigo about a woman’s body… oh yeah, she taught him Bankai as well .
Coming in second, there’s Urahara. The man who restored Ichigo’s powers and taught him the Getsuga Tenshou received 8 votes.
But towering above all other teachers, there’s Zangetsu. In the end, Zangetsu was there for Ichigo whenever he truly needed him. From teaching the Getsuga’s name, to teaching him how to fight, and as his final act teaching Ichigo the final Getsuga Tenshou. With 13 votes, he took first place. Now to see whether he’ll ever be back to teach Ichigo to breathe once more.

The Pillar of Strength

Spreading some Chad-love

With Chad finally getting some attention in this new arc, it only makes sense for him to be in this week’s color page. Kubo shows us once more that he’s more than capable of drawing his characters. In spite of being pink, Chad still looks awesome. Then again, Chad pulls pink off better than you’d expect from a giant . If only I’d have the time I wouldn’t mind making a background for my desktop based on this picture. Then again, there’s a lot I’d do if I were to have time . Anyways, little else to say about the picture except for me liking it.

Disaster strikes

Riruka ran out of cake!!!…and Ichigo’s about to be killed, whatever…

Mr. Pork decided he should pork out a bit more, turning into a four eyed hulk of a… pork. Ichigo looks in amazement at the monster in front of him, which only moments ago was an ugly stuffed animal. Mr. Pork 2.0 gives a great big shout, making Riruka forget all about her intention of ignoring Ichigo. For someone who put Ichigo into this situation, she really hasn’t planned things out very well. You’d think someone who’d put a timer on a creature that turns it into a monster wouldn’t be this surprised… and he isn’t.

Riruka runs to her box and sees Mr. Pork 2.0. After witnessing the monstrosity, she turns to Giriko and starts yelling at him. It turns out that Giriko was the one who placed a timer on Mr. Pork, causing him to go into a berserker state. Though Riruka is caught up in all of this, Giriko isn’t all too worried. It’s not like he’s to blame for the fact that Riruka asked him for help with Ichigo’s training. Riruka then tells Giriko that he could’ve thought of countless other ways to help Ichigo’s training, though he says he couldn’t think of anything else.

This raises a couple of questions. First off, how come Xcution isn’t capable of working as a team on Ichigo’s training? You’d expect them to be a bit more cautious with their only hope of getting rid of the Hollow’s curse (assuming Kuugo spoke the truth). Instead we see Riruka put in charge with the task of teaching Fullbring to Ichigo, for no apparent reason as of yet, with the only qualification she has being the ability of providing Ichigo with a location to train. Admittedly, this chapter shows us that she did ask for some help. Asking the butler for help makes sense, but to think Giriko and Riruka didn’t even discuss mutating Mr. Pork… Something I’m even more curious about, however, is why Riruka and Giriko’s conversation suggests that Giriko is somewhat omnipotent with his ability?

Time tells no lies

Tell that to Barragan

Just as Riruka wants to go on another rampage, Chad tells Riruka to take Ichigo out of the box. Giriko, however, tells them it’s not possible. He warns Chad and Riruka that Ichigo can’t leave the box until he survives for 30 minutes inside of it. As Riruka has her doubts about such a vague condition, Giriko reminds her that she was the fool for letting him decide the conditions of the training. The conditions set by Giriko are requirements that are to be kept by those bound to the timer. If they fail to meet the requirements, they are turned to ash by Barragan’s more evil twin brother twice removed: the God of Time.

Chad apparently never heard anything about this ability, once more proving communication isn’t Xcution’s strong point, as Giriko decides to explain how his Fullbring works. Using his Fullbring, Giriko places a timer during which a requirement has to be met. If anyone or thing doesn’t make the requirement once it’s placed on him/her/it, they turn to dust same as what happened with Barragan’s Respira. Chad calls it as it is, telling Giriko that he’s basically threatening Ichigo. But Riruka confirms that this isn’t just some boasting by Giriko as she’s seen it happen many times before. Giriko then once more reinstates that Ichigo has to last 15 minutes inside of Riruka’s box while Mr. Pork is in Wild Beast Mode or else Mr. Pork, Ichigo, and the box will be turned to ashes.

As Chad demands Giriko deactivates his Fullbring, Giriko explains that time is not something to be messed with. Though Giriko can start a timer, he can’t undo its effect once it’s started. What’s more, if Giriko makes a mistake in using his Fullbring it can result in instantaneous death. Continuing in the line Barragan set during the Arrancar arc, Giriko points out the dangers of time manipulation. As reality sets in, the next batch of Riruka’s tea seems to be finished. Giriko then points out how good things can be if you take your time.

Honestly, ‘Time tells no lies’, has to be my least favorite Fullbring ability as of yet. Kuugo and Riruka’s Fullbring abilities at least could be explained through the properties of the items they used. I refer you to last week’s review for more on those. But ‘Time tells no lies’ is too farfetched in my opinion. Still, as some of you probably expect from me, I do have an explanation for this rather ludicrous ability. Obviously, the medium for this ability is the pocket watch Giriko has. The main purpose of a watch, is obviously to tell time. Using a watch properly, you can even use it as a timer or a countdown. Yet ‘Time tells no lies’ doesn’t read time or count it down, it somehow can be used to manipulate people and objects with timers. The example given here is Mr. Pork’s mutation. How could a pocket watch be related to a stuffed animal turning into a four eyed gorilla of a pig? My answer to that? Time changes everything. Call it evolution, call it decay, time affects everything around us. Given enough time, anything can change. Some things take only seconds, where other things can take ages. ‘Time tells no lies’ allows Giriko to use time limiters to have objects and people meet requirements within the set time. My guess is that ‘Time tells no lies’ then in fact does, is to allow the passage of time to take place.

Here’s how I think the passage of time affected Mr. Pork. Going by nature and nurture, you could say that if someone spends a lot of time in a violent surroundings, he or she could adapt to the situation by becoming violent as well in order to protect him or herself. Behavior can become more aggressive in order to protect oneself. Evolution over generations can cause creatures to evolve or devolve based on needs -especially in Bleach, reread the Deicide arc to see Aizen’s theory on how fear can help in evolution- even transforming them into entirely new beings -again, Deicide arc. Giriko’s Fullbring probably forced Mr. Pork to undergo whatever changes would have taken place if Mr. Pork was in a climate of constant battling, causing him to become Mr. Pork 2.0. Again, I’m probably entirely wrong about this as it doesn’t quite fit. Bringing me back to ‘Time tells no lies’ being my least favorite Fullbring as of yet as I just can’t explain how it did what it did. Especially considering there’s no Hougyoku in play.

Mega Munchies

Ever felt so hungry you could just eat the carpet?

As Chad should finally start realizing he should just punch Giriko, slap Riruka, and kick Kuugo in the groin for being so lax, Ichigo is still in the mess Xcution put him in. Where Mr. Pork would just chase Ichigo in order to beat the living crap out of him, Mr. Pork 2.0 decided to beat the living crap out of everything in sight. Too bad for Riruka’s box, Mr. Pork 2.0’s sight has improved with the extra set of eyes, destroying it in the process of destroying Ichigo.

Meanwhile, Ichigo is running round while displaying his athletic abilities. This was especially obvious when Ichigo threw the button into Mr. Pork 2.0’s eye. Go figure that he managed to throw the button hard enough to actually hurt the dummy. With the pig distracted, Ichigo gets back to thinking on how he might be able to use the elusive Fullbring ability. Last week, he figured the Shinigami representative badge would be the ideal item for him. This was confirmed by Chad as well. But now there’s the question on how Ichigo can enforce the badge’s soul. Luckily, Chad thought of that as well as he suddenly yells the answer to Ichigo: Pride.

Pride

Actually… there was a giant Hollow about to kill a little girl and you had to jump in and safe her… but pride works as well

The origin of Chad’s power and its medium. Remember way back in chapter 39, when Chad first used his Brazo derecha del gigante? He remembered what his fist should be used for. That even though he is of mixed race, he should be proud of what he is. That his body can be used as a shield for others. The man who showed him that had the same color of skin as he has and held his hand at the time when he taught Chad this valuable lesson. In a way he no longer saw his body just as his own, but as a blessing given by his ancestors. The taunting by others no longer bothered him as he knows he can be proud of who and what he is. Eventually sacrificing his own body to protect others, he basically objectified his own body. Take a slumbering Fullbring ability, this train of thought, add a touch of Hougyoku, put them in a situation where power is needed, and there we have the birth of the Brazo derecha del gigante. Take this explanation and what Chad says in this chapter and it should be enough for you to understand… right?

But what does this mean for Ichigo? Chad’s explanation on his powers tells Ichigo that the object itself doesn’t necessarily have to be important for what it did or does for you. It’s the bond you create with the item and how it ties in with your own experiences and emotions. With Chad, his skin and right arm are important because they are like a tribute to the precious moment shared between grandfather and grandson. If it wasn’t for Chad’s abuelo, Chad wouldn’t have cared less about his skin or the purpose of his fists. The bond with the item, which is required for Fullbring, doesn’t necessarily require the object to be consciously present. At least, that’s what I make of the next part of the chapter. Chad tells Ichigo that he has to find his own pride for the badge to react. Pride he felt during the time he was a Shinigami.

Tensa Zangetsuga Tenshou?

The animators are going to have a field day with this one

Ichigo tries to recall a moment where he felt pride as a Shinigami. Looking back at his time as a Shinigami, he thinks back to all the times he managed to protect people who were close to him, using his Shinigami powers. The moments where Ichigo felt true pride as a Shinigami, were moments where he lived up to his name. The time where Ichigo did what he wanted to do for his mother: to protect. But it isn’t just that. It was the time where he managed to live up to Rukia’s expectations as well -judging by the frame where we finally see Rukia again. As Ichigo’s feelings start to stir inside him, while walking down memory lane, the badge suddenly responds.

An all too familiar black energy suddenly surrounds Ichigo, calling forth a giant shuriken shaped like Tensa Zangetsu’s guard. But what could this be? Did the badge turn into a giant death star, or is this only the beginning of the transformation? What’s more, what really triggered this activation? This brings us back to what we just witnessed and what I said about the object not having to be consciously present. Ever since Ichigo returned from Soul Society, he’d been using the badge to leave his body and to become a Shinigami. The badge drew out Ichigo’s power so he could protect. He took the badge with him at all times so that he could be warned whenever Hollows were around and so he could do something about them. The badge resonated with Ichigo’s soul in order to draw it out, if you will. This happened during times where Ichigo wanted his Shinigami powers most. By thinking back at all the times he enjoyed having his Shinigami powers, the desire for them surfaced as well. The badge reacted, and this is what we get. With Fullbring seemingly activated, we should be in for quite a show next week.

Pretty good chapter if you ask me. Sure, ‘Time tells no lies’ almost ruined it for me as I still dislike the ability, but the parts with Chad and Ichigo were great. We got more insight into Chad’s powers and this chapter reminded us of how and why Chad became what he is today. More importantly, this chapter finally has Ichigo awakening (or starting to awaken) his Fullbring. Besides that, it was a rather straightforward chapter. Perhaps a bit too short, as Bleach tends to be, but I liked it. I’ll admit that this chapter still doesn’t explain how Ichigo is able to use Fullbring, considering how he fired off all his reiatsu with the Mugetsu, but that’s something for another chapter. I personally can’t wait for next week’s chapter as I feel things will get a lot more interesting now that Ichigo can finally do something with the macabre again. Or at least, he should be able to. Which leads me to this week’s headspinner.

Ichigo seems to be awakening to his Fullbring ability, judging by this week’s chapter. How he did it, without a shred of Reiatsu on him, is still a mystery to me, but that doesn’t matter to me right now. Fullbring is an ability that is awakened due to Hollow interaction with ancestors. In a way, this causes Reiatsu in people to become supernatural. We know that people with higher concentrations of Reiatsu are capable of seeing ghosts and those with even higher concentrations of Reiatsu are capable of using special abilities (e.g. Quincy’s and Fullbringers). Considering Ichigo’s background, I only want an answer to one question:
Can Ichigo see ghosts again?

Just in case you aren’t satisfied with this as a headspinner, here’s a better one:

Isn’t Orihime basically a Fullbringer as well?

The next chapter is obviously going to be about showcasing Ichigo’s Fullbring ability and naming it. Perhaps Ichigo (and Chad) will confront Xcution about what happened with Mr. Pork’s inhabitant causing Ichigo to doubt Xcution. But Kuugo will then step back into the spotlight in order to smooth things over again. The next step of the training will be for Ichigo to strengthen his Fullbring ability so he can use the badge’s ability to reawaken his Shinigami powers. During that time, we may find out more about who attacked Ishida

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 you may have, give predictions, and to vote in this week’s poll. Don’t forget to rate this week’s chapter! I’ll see you guys again next week!

 

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

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~ by The Underscore on February 12, 2011.

5 Responses to “The Underscore’s Bleach review 436”

  1. good review again!

    I wished you are going to explain why “Time tell no lies” named like that 😦

    I thought Chad was not going to his skin, he seemed very close to his coins as it represents his abuleo’s something.

  2. First Replier: obviously the coin is a chekhov gun for later when chad needs a power up.

    I liked this chapter because it gave Giriko some personality beyond “that guy who looks like Wrath” i get the feeling that his eyepatch is connected to his power, because of the focus on it when the title chapter was shown. However, Giriko’s power has way to many holes in it, but i think thats because Giriko either lied, or held back important info about his power. When Riruka started interacting with ichigo, my suspicions of Xcution had decreased a little, but Giriko really seemed to be giving off evil vibes this chapter. Hopefully they really are evil and the reason Giriko’s ability makes no sense is because he lied about it.
    Nice to see Rukia again though. Hope she shows up soon, i miss her character, she was always fun, and made ichigo more interesting.

  3. @First Replier:

    Thanks.
    I’d love to try and explain why ‘Time tells no lies’ is called the way it is, but that would be more speculation on top of what I speculated in the review. But I guess if you really want to know: My guess is that it’s called ‘Time tells no lies’ because time does just that. In the end, time does not discriminate and can not be cheated no matter how hard you try. Time holds true to everything, in a way not telling lies. That’s all I’ve got really :).

    As for the coin, I’d have to agree with takashid on that one.

    @takashid:
    My guess is that the eyepatch has something to do with the repercussions of messing with time. Let’s face it, no matter how skilled he seems now, he’s bound to have made mistakes that had some dire repercussions.

    As for Xcution themselves. Giriko finally showed a side to him I was hoping for, actually. It was a bit predictable so I’m hoping there will be more, but this doesn’t help me with my suspicions towards Xcution.

    As for Rukia in this chapter, she’s the reason I put up the first of the two headspinners :).

  4. Just finished reading your interview at MH. Nice to learn some things about you. If you are thinking to review another title I would vote for Fairy Tail as it doesn’t have a reviewer and its release day is different than the WSJ titles. But Bleach is enough for me. Just know that I read your reviews every week regardless whether I reply or not. 🙂

    I agree that it was a good chapter, better than the previous one, but it still can’t make me feel interested on the current plot. Although Ichigo at last managed to use, or we should better say initiate a use, of a supernatural power, one and a half year after the FGT, I really doubt that it will be a full fullbring ability. It will be enough to destroy that Pork but it will be still incomplete. I really hope that next we will not jump to the second part of his training but rather to the rest of the unresolved issues like where the hell is Isshin or who attacked Ishida.

    I liked your explanation of Chad’s Fullbring ability and I fully agree with it. And like you I found Giriko’s ability a bit “lousy”. Barragan would have felt insulted. 😉

    –Can Ichigo see ghosts again?–

    The fact that Ichigo managed to “activate” a sort of a supernatural power from the badge indicates that his reiatsu is slowly begun its restoration. I suspect that Ichigo’s reiatsu awakening and restoration is the main objective of this training. If Ichigo wants to obtain his shinigami powers back the obvious condition and first step for this to be achieved would be to regain a high concentration of reiatsu. The current training has to be about that otherwise it would be somewhat pointless (according to what we know so far – tbt we don’t know much about FB yet). So assuming this conclusion is correct, yeah Ichigo should be able to see ghosts. He may not see them clearly yet but he should be able to see them at least blurred, just like his sister Karin back in the first chapters of the series.

  5. kuroi: whil im not sure about Isshin, i get the feeling that ishida being attacked will not be expanded on until the climax of this arc. if Xcution is evil then “bookman” will probably be revealed as a secret member that ginjou didnt want chad or ichigo to know about. This seems like a big possibility to me, just because ichigo has completly forgotten about Ishida after hearing about the “return your power” plan.

    As to the headspinner about ichigo seeing ghosts again…
    Its really impossible to tell at this point. Supposedly yes, but knowing how kubo loves to drag things out, plus the fact that letting ichigo get over the main drawback of FGT this easily is pretty weak, im going to have to say No. Kubo is milking this for all he’s got, showing how much ichigo misses seeing rukia and protecting people. he wont give that “angst” up yet, especially when its one of the ways ginjou was able to convince ichigo to listen to him. So that wont happen yet, i think. Most likely, since fullbring draws out the soul of the object, it does not require a lot of your own reiatsu, since your relying on the object. so ichigo will probably have enough to see reguler ghosts, but not hollows or shinigami.

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