After escaping from prison, Kouga had first gone and killed the three who had framed him. When Ginrei heard of this, he found and confronted Kouga, but Kouga felt that Ginrei was aligned against him too. Kouga had subsequently tried to attack Ginrei with Muramasa, but Ginrei had protected himself with a barrier, so Kouga had cut off his kenseikan headpiece and departed. Kouga had continued to fight, but as time went on and as he continued to treat Muramasa as just a tool, he didn’t realize that Muramasa was starting to be unable to hear him. When he had finally been confronted by both Ginrei and Yamamoto, Kouga found himself unable to release and use Muramasa, and he ended up getting sealed away. Back in the present, Kouga blames Muramasa for not responding to his call back then, and Muramasa is surprised because he hadn’t heard anything. Muramasa tries to plead his case, but Kouga is still furious and makes it clear that Muramasa is nothing more than a tool. Before Kouga can strike Muramasa again though, Byakuya arrives to stop him.
Compared to what we learned last week, this week’s episode turned the tables a bit. Since it showed that Kouga basically went mad and treated Muramasa like crap, Kouga is the one who’s portrayed as the bigger villain. Muramasa wasn’t nearly as bad this episode and was almost a sympathetic character. Almost. It’s hard to just forget all that he’s responsible for, and he wasn’t exactly a good influence on Kouga in the first place. Obviously even Kouga is a victim of some circumstances, and there’s enough blame to go all around, but regardless, this sets up quite well for a final confrontation (probably with Ichigo) because Muramasa will likely end up siding with Kouga despite the abuse. For the time being however, it looks like we’ll have a Byakuya vs. Kouga battle next episode. Unfortunately, there is no episode next week – a break is standard for shows this time of year. Episode 252 airs January 5, 2010.