Summary:

After Findor powers up to what he calls the vice-captain level, Shuuhei has a hard time going head to head against him. None of Shuuhei’s attacks hit, and he gets slashed several times in the process. To add insult to injury, Findor taunts him for becoming exhausted, implying that Shuuhei isn’t strong enough to be a vice-captain. Findor then transforms via his resurrección, granting himself crab-like claws. In the subsequent clashes, Shuuhei uses his explosive armband in conjunction with a spell to try to restrain Findor, but the Arrancar still has use of his claw’s ability to shoot high-pressure water currents, and he’s able to break free. Shuuhei attempts to cut through the water currents, but in the end he’s forced to release his own zanpakutou. He tells Findor though that he doesn’t like it much and notes that it has the shape of something that reaps lives.

With it, Shuuhei is able to cut off part of Findor’s hair and also hit Findor in the back, and he observes that Findor isn’t able to read its movements. He thinks that Findor should be afraid of it like he is, and all this prompts Findor to break off most of the rest of his mask in order to unleash the rest of his power. Shuuhei reacts by slicing Findor’s right claw in half, and he then recites something that Tousen once taught him: a person not afraid of the sword he holds is not worthy of holding the sword. In desperation, Findor tries to fire a point-blank cero, but Shuuhei cuts through it and kills him. This victory is short-lived though because suddenly one of the pillars gets destroyed, and everyone is surprised to see that it was Ikkaku who was defeated.

Preview

Wow, and I thought last week’s episode was good – this week was way beyond what I expected. The fight was extremely impressive in its style, choreography, and animation quality, making it very intense and fun to watch. Even the choices of background music were superb, especially the one that played when the tide was turning in favor of Shuuhei. And like with last week’s episode, having all this animated gave extra emphasis to Shuuhei’s lines about being afraid of one’s own sword, making him all that much of a cooler character. In short, I can’t remember being this impressed by an action episode of Bleach since maybe episode 118 two years ago. It makes me wish that this group of animators could do all the big fights from now on.

Not surprisingly though, having such great production quality this week comes at a cost. If the preview is any indicator, the way the characters are drawn in next week’s episode will unfortunately be somewhat below par. Shuuhei looks like he has down syndrome or something.

45 Comments

  1. not to take away from what awesomeness awaits in this episode but what is going on with next week. maybe it is just a few poorly drawn scenes. Hope you are feeling OK Omni.

    xie
  2. “Shuuhei looks like he has down syndrome or something.” That’s insensitive but funny as hell. But this episode look like a million dollar music video with all the camera changes, filters, and music the animators definitely stepped it up probably by watching a lot of MTV and BET videos. I was expecting to see during the fight Matsumoto humping a stripper pole, Soifon throwing hundreds, Hitsugaya doing tricks on a bike, and Shunsui popping Champagne going by how cool the animation looked.

    Roger
  3. I still find it somewhat odd that all the captains and all the Espada are just chilling while all this occurs…you would think they would be going at it by now. The way they’ve shown it, all 4 of the pillar battles can be seen as occurring at the same time, but occasionally it pans over to the captains, who are…standing there. Doing nothing. You would think the Captains or Espada would mount an offensive or something…evidentally all combat must halt while the underlings duke it out >_>;

    Tenck
  4. “In short, I can’t remember being this impressed by an action episode of Bleach since maybe episode 118 two years ago”

    118? What about 121 and 166. 166 in particular has the best animation quality seen in Bleach.

    torfel
  5. i thoroughly enjoyed this episode. i dont even remember paying all that much attention to this sequence during the manga. but with the incredible fight scenes and sequences and thennn the quality of animation… im just a little bit blown away right now O_O

    woo
  6. Great episode nice song and good fight between Hisagi and Findor love the intensity in the fight and thats what bleach should be all about hopefully the batle between ikkaku and the big will be interesting now that his weapon is broken or not.

    John Revolver
  7. Have to say I didn’t take much notice of this fight in the manga.
    Just didn’t have much going for it apart from the speech from Shuuhei about how he fears his power and dislikes his sword.
    Somehow the animation team managed to turn this into one of the best episodes I’ve seen of Bleach in a long time.
    Hopefully they manage to achieve the same level for the big battle with emo boy.

  8. Ok…………………. This just caught my eye. I just watched and it and boy do I agree with this. One of the most decent Bleach episodes I’ve seen so far.

    Too bad standards like these don’t exist on Bleach.

    megalith
  9. Also: Reuse of the grimmjow fight animator? Lots of scratches on the characters and slightly wierd mouths.
    Also: A little too high-powered imo. A vice-captain vs. a fraccion shouldnt look like an espada vs a captain or vizard.

    g
  10. This one was a helluva episode, well animated and had a very good pace. I thought that they were going to show Ikkaku’s fight, but I think it’s better this way, following entirely the manga.

    Rootz
  11. nice episode i think findor had the advantage but he died because he didn,t fear his own blade (zanpaktou) and also there was a lot of talking we could do without all the talking in the this episode and anyone after this.

    Rickett
  12. Probably the single best episode in a long, long time. Not just the animation – which was fantastic – but the choreography on the fight, too. Definitely a fun episode to watch, it ticks all the right boxes for my “come home from work, disengage brain and enjoy” entertainment.

    Sol Fury
  13. Stunning, just stunning. They turned what was a reasonable fight in the manga (For me, at least) into one of the top 3 fights in Bleach for me, simply with the production quality. It made me care about the fight so much more than I did when I was reading it.

    @g: No, no and no. That did not look like a Captain vs. Espada fight. Such a fight wouldn’t take just one episode (Well, 2 I suppose). Additionally, quite a few vice-captains and even lower ranks (Yumichika) are in some ways on captain level (Although clearly they’re not capable of or willing to be one), and Findor was about on Espada level at the final point, but died because… Well, because he was a faggot.

    Next week looks like a return to the norm, although some parts of the preview were above average. That first screen is worrying though, really 😛

    My only negative comment is that I wish they used this kind of quality production for the more epic fights in Bleach.

    Vim
  14. Great freaking fight, as others have said the animation is great, the choreography translation was stunning, but most important the direction of is ep was superb. It’s always been my belief that great directors make better content, they can take a mundane fight and make it one of the best.

    AntiSpiral
  15. FUCK YEAH!!!! i can tell the animation is gonna br TIGHT just from the screen caps!
    that’s a nice face Shuuhei got in that pic with the blade
    KILL DEM ALL!!!

    BROOKLYN otaku
  16. Ok, so it wasn’t just me that thought the animation and the style seemed a bit different than normal. It was almost as if another company had done it. One of the best episodes in the series. I hope they keep it up. Doubt it, but one can always hope.

    matsui
  17. And I thought we’d have to wait until Ichigo v Ulquiorra to get good animation again! Though, I guess it makes since seeing as Shuuhei’s shinkai is being shown for the first time.

    There have been a few really well animated episodes since 118. The two that spring to mind right away are 155 (Rukia v Aaroniero) and 166 (Ichigo v Grimmjow, which might be the best animated episode of Bleach to this day).

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