The developments certainly are heavy this week. After seeing Unohana’s farewell monologue, I think it’s fairly certain that she will actually die (though if her body remains intact…). Kenpachi is unsurprisingly devastated by the prospect of losing her, crying out several times as he holds her. With her death however, he has managed to unlock his true power, along with one more major piece in the game: his “partner”. All the evidence points to this voice belonging to his zanpakutou, though the scene is cut off before anything is confirmed. It’s hard to imagine how ridiculously powerful he will be now that he will have the full set of abilities and I’m pretty eager to see what he does next, but it is still disappointing that we will not be seeing Unohana in action against a real enemy.
Kubo also finally returns to Nimaiya’s palace, where Ichigo and Renji’s fight has concluded after three days. In an unexpected development, Renji has actually outperformed Ichigo by far. Things are not looking up for him, and his “epic fail” has earned him an ejection from Soul Society, with zero progress on repairing Zangetsu. In a way, I sort of feel bad for him – he’s gone through so much, from receiving powers from Rukia to forcing out Zangetsu to a crash course in bankai training to all sorts of other inner battles and training. He’s even reached a final stage beyond bankai and vizard abilities, then lost and gained his abilities back. And now, after all that, the creator of the zanpakutou tells him that he’s been doing things incorrectly from the beginning and will have to start over completely. I’m sure he’ll be fine at the end of his journey, so the big question now is, who the hell is Ichigo exactly, and who were his parents?