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Bleach 545 – Blue Stripes

Bleach Manga   545   01

Ichigo’s sisters seem to know pretty much nothing about what he’s is up to, and they seem completely unaware what’s going on in the spiritual world. This is in huge contrast with his friends, who guess correctly that he is involved with Soul Society again. Even then their knowledge is pretty vague, and I don’t think they’ve had much additional contact with the shinigami after Aizen’s attack on Karakura Town. I’ve never been a fan of the way Ichigo keeps his friends and family out of the loop purposely in some misguided attempt to “protect them” and his secrets aren’t helping anyone. Now it gets worse however; Kyouraku approaches Keigo, Tatsuki and Mizuiro and tells them that they will have to part ways with Ichigo permanently. There has been no clues given to why this needs to be the case, but perhaps Ichigo will die (yeah, right) or he will take up permanent residence in Soul Society. My guess is that he will be appointed to captain, or a position under the Spirit King.

Renji, Rukia, and Byakuya are all still in the Spirit Palace undergoing the Zero Squad’s shenanigans, including having to cross swords while staring at each other awkwardly, or being forced to strip down under the threat of castration. Whatever else Shutara did to Renji after that is left to our imaginations. Despite the Zero Squad’s strange personalities, it looks like whatever they are going through is meant to power them up and train them as they progress through each trial. So far there is healing, food, new clothes, new weapons, and personal training, corresponding to the specialty of each of the five members. I’m not sure why Renji, Rukia, and Byakuya were selected for this aside from the fact that they are main characters, but they will need to make something happen beyond the usual shinigami arsenal if they hope to match the strength of the Vandenreich.

Unfortunately there’s no word from Urahara’s end this chapter after last week’s teaser, which I would have much preferred to see over the comic relief filler that was sprinkled throughout. Whatever he’s up to is likely to be quite important, and the mystery man he’s with (probably Grimmjow) is hopefully going to play a significant role.

July 10, 2013 at 11:52 am
34 comments »
  • July 10, 2013 at 12:10 pmMisk

    “Let’s introduce 45645 subplots but at the same time reveal nothing”

    This chapter in a nutshell.

    • July 10, 2013 at 1:31 pmsortedevaras

      This chapter? More like the last couple years in a nutshell.

    • July 10, 2013 at 2:50 pmdiaz

      As Kubo usually sings:

      “I create 99 plots and I ain’t solving one”

      :P

    • July 10, 2013 at 10:09 pmSkins Thunderbomb

      99 bottles of plot on the wall, 99 bottles of plot,
      take one down, pass it around, still 99 bottles of plot on the wall.

      • July 11, 2013 at 1:59 amKoroshiyaKi

        Cuz you’re trapped in Aizen’s illusion.

  • July 10, 2013 at 12:18 pmdustandechoes91

    One thing that always disappointed me was how they sidelined Tatsuki as a character. She had such potential; she was a more skilled fighter than Ichigo at the start and she even took on hollows at various points without being able to see them clearly. For the longest time I always thought she would get dragged deeper yet here we are…

    • July 10, 2013 at 12:26 pmsmokex365

      It’s entirely possible they might still become involved. Perhaps as replacement substitute shinigami’s if Ichigo is indeed promoted to a Captain or something.

    • July 10, 2013 at 1:37 pmsortedevaras

      The problem is we have 800 other side characters and only 16 pages a week. I mean hell, how many years has it been since we saw Grimmjow for example?

      • July 10, 2013 at 4:03 pmL002

        You are right, at this point the Soul Society has recieved a downgrade due to the loss of the head captain and some bankais. But some allies, that were once enemies, could prove to be useful.

        My main concern is Ryuken, he never seems to be the type that let his wife’s killer roam free. He will likely play a big role in this arc, since he is notably the only quincy that didn’t seem to join the enemy.

      • July 11, 2013 at 7:18 amdustandechoes91

        In the case of Grimmjow, I feel like villains can be treated differently in that they can accept defeat and fall back into the shadows, and soul society side characters can always be assumed to just be going about their duties, but Tatsuki and even Keigo were developed too much at random points to be ignored into obscurity and forgotten as side characters. They are two of the three high school friends that did not join in way back, yet they both have some spiritual powers and even have a limited awareness of what has been going on plot-wise.

        All is irrelevant anyways, as we are only counting down the chapters till Don Kanonji is revealed to be the spirit king and sacrifices himself to save everyone, revealing that Ichigo was created to be the ultimate spirit king. Ichigo will then take over his role.

    • July 10, 2013 at 3:57 pmL002

      I am wondering the same thing. Initially I took Tatsuki as he “Sakura Haruno” of Bleach. One would expect her to get a major upgrade especially during the time skip where, like a certain two people in the beginning, Tatsuki would get our lovely black cat to teach her. I guess this is the difference between someone who’s level is the same as Don Kanoji and one who is a Fullbringer.

      Anyway, I feel Ichigo won’t be making a lot of money. I kinda liked it how he was being someone who was making a good amount of money by selling his skills. I hope the Soul King is willing to give him some gold.

  • July 10, 2013 at 12:23 pmGermanguy

    Well, why we are talking about Ichigo’s Sisters. I wonder how much “Powers” they have from their Father and Mother. We know a little bit of Ichigo’s oldest Sister. But the Younger sisters we only know so far, that she can see also the “Spirits” (Dead Ones). But no much more so far…

    • July 10, 2013 at 5:46 pmPsithief

      I’d guess they got the Shinigami and Quincy powers, but the Hollow stayed intact and passed entirely to Ichigo.

  • July 10, 2013 at 12:35 pmNierTevra

    man, kyouraku’s carefree…taking a stroll in the mortal realm in full shinigami getup…shouldn’t they at least have some secret service for the captain-commander?

    lol@bayakuya’s mock death scenario…shush now, he’s back from a hot spring break…

    rukia’s still of relevance…what…

    are we ever gonna catch a glimpse of spirit king again? or is he just gonna sit pretty till the very end and give ichigo some sort of certificate when this is all done…would be pretty baws if the spirit king personally oversaw ichigo’s training since he’s so ‘special’…

    • July 10, 2013 at 6:43 pmsortedevaras

      Bayakuya is about the least likely character next to Toshiro to actually die. Popular good guy characters don’t die in Bleach.

  • July 10, 2013 at 12:36 pmFabio

    I want to see Rukia’s peach again.

  • July 10, 2013 at 1:02 pmGrant

    This is still ongoing? How many chapters are there left?

    • July 10, 2013 at 1:32 pmMisk

      This is last arc but it’s supposed to last longer than the whole Arrancar saga, so go figure…

    • July 10, 2013 at 1:39 pmsortedevaras

      Going by the length of the Arrancar arc would guess at least 3-4 more years.

  • July 10, 2013 at 1:04 pmLogan

    I have a feeling that the Isshin we’ve been seing every so’n so might just be an artificial soul covering his human body. How else can we justify that Isshin isn’t even training or anything for the upcoming war. Or maybe he’s protecting the younger siblings just in case?.

    I can most definitely see Ichigo turning down an officer position if it’s offered to him. Considering he had no seniority respected (not to be confused that he didn’t have towards him, but he never really bothered with bureaucracies) to “Old Man Yamamoto” – Although it would be cool to fill in hi’s fathers footsteps as captain of the 10th division.

    Thinking further on Senjumaru Shutara, aka the Royal fashion designer. Shinigami clothes must play an important part in being a Soul Reaper. Think of how Ichigo’s bankai would change if he was wearing the captain uniform. My guess is that just like an Asauchi, the Shihakushō plays a spiritual energy role, as it may change along with the sword over time, As we’ve clearly seen with ichigo. Other than his bankai, but the arm bands that go along the neck while in shikai, etc. Also remembering that his bankai’s current power is represented by how ripped or destroyed his clothes are.

    Aside from cool factor, ichigo in white? whitey? hollow white? asauchi turning white first time he touched it? all goes just too well.

  • July 10, 2013 at 1:24 pmLuxor

    I didn’t see Ichigo this week. Decent chapter. \o/

  • July 10, 2013 at 1:30 pmYogo

    Renji should’ve gotten castrated, it would’ve been funny :P.

  • July 10, 2013 at 1:37 pmspikerman87

    Remember when there was good guys fighting bad guys? I do. I miss that.

  • July 10, 2013 at 2:01 pmDrift

    I said it last week but I will say it this week as well. Kubo is now openly displaying how perverted he is. I swear when Bleach first started less people got naked and it’s like an on-going thing in Bleach now.

    That aside glad we got Rukia back. I missed her.

  • July 10, 2013 at 2:59 pmCelecia01

    Does anyone else feel that the plot of this arc constantly advances in every direction accept the ones people are interested in? I mean, this week we had three pointless pages about lunch at the kurosaki house, Hiyori and the Vizards taking up rollers with the intent to do some intense, final arc of the series, decorating, and Ichigo’s friends who are about to have something revealed that won’t probably be shown for another month….meanwhile we STILL have no idea who it is that Urahara and co are met in Hueco Muendo, and why they saved them! Come on Kubo, focus on the story before we forget why we’re here!

    • July 10, 2013 at 10:11 pmsortedevaras

      I for one want to find out more about Omaeda’s extended family next week then maybe if we are lucky we can have like 4 or 5 weeks of flashbacks about stuff that could be summarized in 2 sentences.

  • July 10, 2013 at 5:50 pmPsithief

    [Dragonball comparison]
    Rukia and Renji are training at 100 times gravity!
    [/Dragonball comparison]

    I really can’t imagine why the Captain Commander would talk to people as unimportant as Ichigo’s schoolmates. What’s his aim?

    • July 10, 2013 at 6:40 pmsortedevaras

      The same reason Aizen bothered to chase them around the city for a few chapters, to waste time. Kubo is deliberately dragging this out. Remember when Urahara had them come to his shop during the Hueco Mundo arc and nothing came of it?

    • July 11, 2013 at 8:26 amLogan

      I hope along the way to telling ichigo’s school friends the goodbye. He maybe then goes to recruit Isshin as a captain agian.

  • July 10, 2013 at 9:12 pmkaitlyn

    You know, I really thought at least Karin would have a big role in this ever since the fullbring arc when she says it’s her turn to protect her brother. I don’t know.-_-

  • July 10, 2013 at 11:19 pmAndré

    It’s funny to see people complaining about Bleach.

    I have just read Bleach from the chapater “goodbye to our xcution” up till now and I toght it was pretty. I couldn’t stop reading.

    That’s why don’t read manga weekly. They get annoying very quickly when you have to wait 7 days to read 20 pages (which is equivalent to less than 10 minutes of an [good non-BS] anime episode, for example).

    Now I’ll let it accumulate about 10 chapters until I get to read it again.

    • July 11, 2013 at 8:29 amLogan

      I wish i had done that, and I was going to but Captain Commander Yamamoto’s bankai had me utterly hooked. Zaraki’s training was just amazing, and then the extremely long awaited backstory of ichigo. And now Vanderriech’s back story and tie ins with Ishida. I tried holding but cannot control…

  • July 12, 2013 at 10:26 amK C M

    Guys, don’t you think it’s time Kenpachi Zaraki releases his Shikai and Bankai.

  • August 21, 2013 at 2:37 pmspikerman87

    Has it been 5 weeks yet? I have plot holes to fruitlessly point out man!