With mostly set up and not much fighting or development, this chapter felt quite short, but I’m cautiously optimistic about what’s to come. Unfortunately, Kenpachi, who finished his fight in about half a second, is pretty bored now so we may not get much more entertainment from his end. Yukio apparently didn’t give poor Giriko a few extra lives like I had expected, so I’m not exactly sure of the extent of his powers. As for the rest of the match-ups, they feel suitable and should be mildy interesting, if not a little generic. The new looks of the captains and possible new moves have perked my interest slightly, but the whole thing just feels like a giant action game (as it turns out, that’s not entirely untrue). I still can’t imagine any of the shinigami losing against mere humans though, unless the Xcution’s stolen powers turn out to be really godly.

Now to start the pre-match commentary: Ichigo and Ishida face off against Ginjou, which is fitting given the things he did to them. Though Ishida likely isn’t going be able to do much, he does provide an interesting observation that would have otherwise never crossed Ichigo’s mind though, and I have a feeling that his “suspicions” may turn out to be true. Hitsugaya gets to fight Yukio, and though ice boy has never felt particularly strong, it wouldn’t be fun to watch if he struggled too much against his opponent. However, the fight with the most plot potential will perhaps be Rukia vs. Riruka, with the possibility of the latter defecting. So far things feel pretty lighthearted and I’m not sure what to make of her cursed stuffed animals or cute bunny ears, but it’ll be interesting to see what Rukia can do against her. And finally, Byakuya is paired with Tsukishima himself, and I really cannot wait to see the bishie captain kick his ass. Byakuya may be rather arrogant, but he does have a strong sense of justice and fights honorably, unlike his opponent. Hopefully he will make good on his promise to kill Tsukishima before he can even attack, but at the moment it is very unclear whether that will actually happen.

My expectations overall remain average, and as for now I do wish that these matches don’t last for too long (Kenpachi’s fight was perfect).


  1. well thsoe fullbringers do not deserve to obtain those powers. dear taichos, just get this done and over with…

    I hope Riruka and Rukia wouldn’t be talking about Ichigo: “No one” would get interested…

    I also am optimistic for new powers, but maybe not, for they are small fry. Damn… a trigger for something else? I suppose Ginjo is more important than the others now…

  2. well since power ranger Ichigo pwned Tsukishima nearly instantly I think Byakuya won’t have much of a problem either. I mean come on human standing up to a captain class shinigami? If Tsukishima can actually hold his own against him then I’d be speechless. Same goes for Ginjou, even with Ichigo’s full bring power up he should not technically be able to stand against Ichigo (given that he nearly wet himself when Ichigo regained his shinigami powers)

  3. This chapter didn’t seem all too bad, despite it being rather generic. I think what I liked about this chapter the most is that Kenpachi actually did kill Giriko (as far as we know). I was expecting Giriko to reverse time or something to nullify Kenpachi’s attack, and thus dragging on their fight. The only other interesting thing is what SS potentially knows about the previous Substitute Shinigami.

  4. I am delightedly surprised that Giriko doesn’t have more than 1 life. Thank God! Here is crossing my fingers that Kubo Tite finally learns how to finish a fight quickly yet astonishingly, instead of dragging it for God-knows-how-many-chapters.
    Besides that, if he drags these battles too long, it wouldn’t be really rational, as they can’t be and shouldn’t be as strong as these experienced shinigamis.
    I sincerely hope for Rukia and Hitsugaya to get much more badass from this now on!!

  5. Byakuya’s speech there was spot on and showed his cold side. Kenpachi win was absolute there. I suspect the only one standing soon will be Ginjou who may very well have his shinigami powers back. Tsukishima will probably play dead and run for it but i don’t see him dying as he seems to be a deeper character than just a 1 shot slash victim (LOL!)

    Zaku Fan
  6. I hope Riruka doesn’t get killed off. She was sweet then, and hell, she’s sweet now.

    THAT said, wow, and I normally don’t complain about this, but I was starting to get confused about the art between Byakuya and Tsukishima, including the image used for this article.

  7. guys… and what about this Ishida’s “neither of the options..” meaning what?? not dead, not alive, not lost.. what Ishida meant under “the lowest possibility, I do not need to tell Kurosaki this” ..?? some 4th option? I have no clue…

    AND – did anybody watch Blaech movie 4th? I was not impressed at all 🙁

    1. Its not about Ginjou’s state.

      its about SS not telling ichigo about it.

      He was thinking about reasons on why they would NOT tell him about there being other substitutes and suspects something sinister FROM SS.

      Remember how Byakuya was interrupted conveniently by Hitsugaya when telling stuff previous chapter? combine that with the fact that we still did not see badge talk flashback and SS is hiding some stuff from ichigo for sure.

  8. At least this arc’s finally getting to the end. Wouldn’t mind Ginjo and/or one or two of the Fullbringers being left behind for later, but still I’d prefer most of them to just drop of the face of the earth.

    This arc < Hueco Mundo < Fake Karakura < Arrancar < Soul Society

    1. It means that SS is not exactly honest with Ichigo and that there is some very sinister motive both behind the badge and them not telling about other substitutes before this.

      basically SS are playing friends, saviors and helpers in this, but that might be just an act and they have another goal for coming here.

      I would not be surprised if ginjou’s motives getting revealed will make both Ichigo and Ishida go wtf at soul society…

  9. Glad Rukia healed Ishida, unlike certain someone who needs to be said to heal him or completely ignore him.

    I have a feeling Riruka vs. Rukia may end up in some comic-releif but I do hope it explains how much Rukia has grown and became a Vice-Captain.

    Rukia was too adorable in this chapter.

  10. I went straight to the scenes with Byakuya in it. I like his new look and I wish the anime will catch up already so I can get a better picture of him. Kenpachi is so hardcore and Yachiru is so adorable with her cross bones hair-clip. I just noticed Ishida’s hairstyle is now parted on the side. Is it me or does Hitsugaya look the same as when he was in the second movie? I can’t get over how everyone looks and I am certainly getting high hopes for awesome fighting moves to come.

  11. The only good to come out of this arc is ichigo getting his powers back and possibly some light being shed on substitute shinigamis. Didn’t like the new characters from the start and i hate them now just waiting to see them fall and quick. Ichigo himself mentioned that he may possibly have more fighting experience than the lot of them so i can’t see captains and vice captains having a difficult time disposing of their opponents.

    Hell Disciple
      1. Actually, I think Flappy was referring to when Ishida arrived after he told Ichigo the truth behind his attack. Ginjou stole Ichigo’s powers, and when Ishida attempted to intervene, Tsukishima cut him down.

        On another note, I hope these fights can remain short and at the same time exiting. It’s been a while since I’ve seen a (good) two-on-one fight in Bleach.

  12. I can´t belive I´m going to say this but all the years Kubo spent in the War aginst Aizen I didn´t expect to be exited by the new developments. It was refreshing to see how they use psycological warfare first, in an atemp to get Ichigo´s power easily, instead of pure fighting.

  13. To be honest, guys, I’m worried about the fights ending too quickly in favor of the Soul Reapers. =/ It’s why I found some of their fights bland. Only a few characters have had impressive fights that weren’t too one-sided and those’re Ichigo, Rukia, Chad, Uryu, and Renji. Hey, Mr. Kubo, if you can, try to make things more challenging for the others so that we don’t end up bored!

  14. Has anyone read Kubo’s previous work Zombiepowder? Check out the last page of chapter 15 and the end of Kenpachi’s fight. Strangely very similar. I can guess that the other fights will be like his previous fight scenes. And about the prefight talk? I’ve seen better ‘about to kick your ass’ scenes in King of the Hill(in a good way to KOTH. Kubo, get it together.)This is just in my opinion.


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