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Bleach 496 – You Shall Not Pass

The captains finally show up to face off against the Sternritter, but as of yet even they are unable to do anything to stop the rampage. Based on what they know from Sasakibe’s dying words, the captains decide to release their bankai’s anyways, in an attempt to either defeat them before they get sealed or break the seal afterwards. Given their limited knowledge of the enemy, it’s still a bit of a brash strategy, though in hindsight that was obviously not the case. With Senbonzakura , Byakuya is actually able to gain some edge initially against As Nodt and the fat one. However, as soon as he releases his bankai, As Nodt uses a medallion-like object to take it away completely, utterly shocking the normally calm and composed Byakuya. I’m assuming the same fate has befallen Hitsugaya, Komamura and Soifon as they have probably done exactly what the Quincies wanted them to do.

Of course, so far there has only been bankai’s that we have already seen, and perhaps Kubo intends to take them out of the picture for now, before beginning to reveal the new stuff. I myself am looking forward more to seeing the bankai’s we haven’t seen before (e.g. Yamamoto, the vizards, Kyouraku), but the remaining captains will have to adjust their game plan and come up with some way to deal with the Vandenreich’s bankai-stealing ability. And if they don’t, Ichigo will have to end up saving the day yet again, though that time may still be far away, depending on how things unravel in Hueco Mundo. Keeping in line with what we’ve seen from Bleach in the past, I do expect there to be some major twists as the battles proceed.

June 18, 2012 at 3:34 pm
  • June 18, 2012 at 3:42 pmdefunktbots

    You’ve got to hand it to Soul Society.

    As a militarised organisation they are seriously lacking in the tactics department.

    Where is the sense in getting all of you best troops to simultaneously attempt a manoeuvre without knowing really what the enemy is capable of, but still knowing that this is likely to mess up bankai. If they had wanted to see the effect they could have got just one person to test it…

    Oh look… now none of us captain’s have bankai’s….

    On a positive note, the artwork is nice!

    • June 18, 2012 at 3:57 pmProoof

      Soul Society is very inept

      • June 18, 2012 at 4:11 pmcode fan

        Not really the case though. We can assume that the captains that do not have a “mask” are the only ones that no longer have a bankai. Seeing how all the captains have released their bankai, we can assume that three special captains have released and kept their Bankai- Rose, Kensei, and Shinji. Those are the only Vizards that the soul society has right now.

        If the head captain is smart, then that old man should have used only is shikai and didn’t use his bankai.

        anyway, the only question is how far does this power bankai snatch and steal extends to, if it makes the captains unable to do shikai then there is trouble. But considering how the recently killed vice-captain was able to use shikai before his death, that may not be the case.

        On the interesting side, I am wondering how that Quincy girl will play a role in the Bleach plot. She is the Juliet of this arc, I will enjoy to see how she does things here.

  • June 18, 2012 at 3:49 pmDa5id



    Well, at least now we can see the Bankai’s we haven’t seen to the point that they’ve used up all of their moves a thousand times over.

  • June 18, 2012 at 4:05 pmMasterDragonKnight

    Captains: They have the ability to seal our bankai, and they are definitely trying to lure us into using bankai.

    Quincy: We are waiting to steal your bankai. You guys should totally bring out your bankai.

    Captains: BANKAI!!!

    • June 18, 2012 at 5:16 pmBakaMochi

      I just lol’d. Seriously guys? You walked right into that one.

    • June 18, 2012 at 5:42 pmDa5id

      Lol, I said the exact same thing when Ivan showed up at the beginning. I think I made that as a comment…

      • June 18, 2012 at 5:51 pmMasterDragonKnight

        I guess great minds (or at least sarcastic ones) think alike. XD

    • June 18, 2012 at 8:24 pmVivace

      I can imagine Zaraki Kenpachi with a YaoMing’s face.

  • June 18, 2012 at 4:25 pmHutch Hutchenson

    Just according to keikaku. Fufufufu.

    • June 18, 2012 at 5:48 pmKamui04

      *TL Note: Keikaku means plan*

  • June 18, 2012 at 4:44 pmRonin09

    I see this as an excuse to have the royal guards ride to the rescue.If this final arc really is delving into that part of the mythology.

  • June 18, 2012 at 5:37 pmAnanas

    They’re strong, what do we do?

    We only have Bankai so that’s a dumb question.


    Alright, now we don’t have Bankai anymore, Kubo we need an asspull asap.

  • June 18, 2012 at 6:24 pml3reezer

    In any case, the fast pacing enables for a bit more entertainment at least.

  • June 18, 2012 at 7:05 pmClick

    Whatever happened to just using their Shikai? Once a character uses their Bankai here, they never, ever use their Shikai again. I don’t even recall a single fight where Hitsugaya hasn’t used his Bankai. What happened to Bankais being the super secret final power only used in tight spots?

    • June 19, 2012 at 12:22 amdamrod

      Well, hitsugaya did use shikai against gin before. And he did use shikai once against the espada (or was it a normal arrancar… Can’t remember which one it was exactly) .
      Then there is the case of ikkaku who prefers to fight with shikai instead of bankai and byakuya did use shikai before switching to bankai and getting it stolen.

      Although that makes me wonder why the stealing didn’t seem to work with the vizards when they activated bankai.

    • June 19, 2012 at 6:58 amNoname

      Didn’t you see Byakuya use his shikai in this very chapter? Capitans or people who obtained bankai can use shikai without calling their shikai names. That was explained in some chapter a long time ago.

  • June 18, 2012 at 7:15 pmzero hour

    it was very dumb for so many captains to release their bankai all at once with reports the enemy could steal it. One captain could have been the guienna pig and let the others try to solve the mystery. Now all these enemies have a bankai ability the only hope for these dumb fools is Kenpachi whose’ bankai is removing his eyepatch and showing his true might and ichigo whose bankai can’t be stolen because he’s the main character.

  • June 18, 2012 at 7:17 pmP Ko

    Quick somebody find that post of mine from weeks ago/months where I stated how predictable in saying they could steal and use bankai.

  • June 18, 2012 at 8:36 pmrandom viewer

    That’s really original to steal an opponent’s move. (sarcasm)
    I just don’t like where the battle is going (downward to boredom) if there is no Bankai involved.

  • June 18, 2012 at 8:58 pmSpencer

    For a superpower that has been around for literally thousands of years, they have really crappy strategies. “Hey, lets have a third of our leaders possibly have their trump card taken away. Why you ask, for science of course. It’s not like we have other people who can perform Bankai (Renji + Ikkaku), and for the sake of thouroghness of course we need to sacrifice four captains!”

  • June 18, 2012 at 9:00 pmYogo

    Byakuya: Okay guys, let’s all use bankai. BANKAI!
    *Bankai gets stolen*
    Byakuya: Wtf my Bankai was stolen!
    As Nodt: U MAD?

  • June 18, 2012 at 9:05 pmChipp12

    Wow, when I saw this picture I’ve thought that it would be a review of some Tsutomu Nihei’s work.

  • June 18, 2012 at 9:13 pmtheog

    why does kubo have to make his characters so gimmicky. It’s not a problem that they all should have individual personalities, but the spectrum is too offsetting in the extremes. With how they look you can already estimate who’s grumpy, the loner, spunky with a hint of sassy, cocky, arrogant, likes to talk, but says otherwise, doesn’t talk enough, I’m too cool for school and the black guy. Nevermind its been shown in the espadas, vizards, fullbringers, one things for sure STOP the cliches. It is unrealistic that people are among friends with those different in personalities/age/body types, so besides the sake of adding diversity, one or two is fine, but the stereotypes are ever so blatantly clear. Otherwise reuse personalities like ulqiourra, stark, gin, tosen, grimmjoww, shinji, kenpachi, maybe byakuya thou one is plenty, not Aizen (clearly). I would mind him rehashing them 50 times, well maybe?

  • June 18, 2012 at 9:42 pmbakakubi

    Hopefully Kenpachi gets a sword release of some kind.

  • June 18, 2012 at 11:00 pmElroy

    At least Kenpachi doesn’t have to worry about getting his bankai stolen.

  • June 19, 2012 at 1:30 amgawrshness

    dude I don’t know about you but that was the stupidest move the captains could have pulled. Hey they can seal bankai so let’s ALL release our strongest moves and become crippled! yay woops looks like they not only seal the bankai they steal it…

  • June 19, 2012 at 2:01 amGuiguix

    It might be that something above bankai exists…

    Megabankai or supermegabankai etc…

  • June 19, 2012 at 2:37 amrufe

    I just hate how the power levels keep getting rewritten. Is it reasonable that some force would appear that is overwhelmingly powerful that soul society isn’t prepared for? Of course, it happened to premodern China after all.

    Is it reasonable for it to happen over and over again? ….No….No it’s not…at all. In fact it’s outright SHI*TY writing.

  • June 19, 2012 at 2:40 amDrift

    Prooof new fav character? Or are out just trying to freak us out As Nodt because… THOSE EYES! :P

  • June 19, 2012 at 4:57 amion62

    Oh come on, Mayuri could kill all these dorks without any difficulty. Just lay a few landmines over here, human bombs over there and boom, they’re dead. Also, he should give them his medicine in case any of them lose a limb.

  • June 19, 2012 at 5:35 pmZeroHour17

    OK first off, not everyone capable of using bankai used it. They most likely had a few people use it because they know they have different strengths and weaknesses, thus would attempt different ways to break the seals. However, it was not a seal, but rather an absorption technique. I would assume getting the badges back would be the first step to retrieving their bankai. Also, good chance those badges are one use only, so each enemy probably only has one. Now we will start seeing more bankai from everyone else, like Urahara, maybe Yorouichi will dust off her Zanpakuto, Ishin, probably Rukia, the other Vizards, good chance Nel will achieve her true form again. Would be willing to bet Haliebel will be released and will probably fight with Hitsugaya combining his ice and her water. We also don’t know if Grimmjaw is dead, so he could make a return. There are soo many more characters to fight these guys, but you all are focusing on the handful of captains who executed a plan that was based on falty information.

  • June 19, 2012 at 7:21 pmkaineng

    hope people do remember that among 13 captains, mayuri’s bankai potentially “can never be stolen”, and we have THREE vaizard captains who would rather use masks over their bankais. well, but 4 versus many quincies still wouldn’t work anyway. kubo better be having something up his sleeve…

  • June 20, 2012 at 8:44 pmtian

    this is probably all a plan to make zaraki kenpachi look all the more badass. Remember, he’s such a badass that he doesn’t even have a Bankai and is yet still considered the strongest captain. I’m sure whichever quincy fights him is in for a rough awakening. Quincy uses pentagon to try sealing bankai, Zaraki “Bitch, I don’t need no bankai!” slash quincy dies