A bunch of random snippets from all around Soul Society are shown this week as most of the shinigami are still recovering from the Vandenreich attack or preparing for the next one. In the 12th Squad headquarters, Mayuri and Nemu are holed up in their lab creating some sort of secret weapon that the rest of their squad knows nothing about. Given Kurotsuchi’s history, I’m extremely curious about what disturbing creature he is coming up with, and even more so as to what it can do (preferably something diabolical that only affects Quincies). As the mad scientist of the Gotei 13, he is best suited for coming up with a counter to the Vandenreich’s abilities and researching their weaknesses.

In the 2nd division, Marechiyo is lounging around doing nothing as usual while Soifon trains. We do get another glimpse of some of the Omaeda family, who all look like Marechiyo with the exception of his sister Mareyo. That segment really didn’t contribute to anything though, and I’m not too sure why it was there. Omaeda is perhaps the most useless vice-captain out there, and his character has neither developed nor done anything worth remembering ever; any panel with him in it is wasted space. More interestingly elsewhere, Komamura Sajin is seeking out his clan’s secret technique from his great grandfather. It seems that the Komamura family has remained hidden from the general affairs of Soul Society for a long time, and intends to keep it that way. There is no indication given as to what abilities these giant, sentient dog-like creatures have, but apparently Sajin wants it enough to fight his elder for it. I can only assume that he will be successful in obtaining the secret, and it should prove useful for battle in the absence of bankai.

Finally, in the Phoenix Palace, Ichigo is getting his new zanpakutou forged, and sadly, Nimaya is saying that he will have to say goodbye to Zangetsu. Nothing further is revealed, and the chapter ends in a wall of water and a cliffhanger. I find it slightly odd that Ichigo’s zanpakutou abilities are going to be changed after he spent the entire series working with Zangetsu and spamming Getsuga Tenshou, but I guess a lot of things are different for him now. Among the important characters we didn’t get to see this time include Kenpachi, Byakuya, Ishida, and especially Urahara. I feel like there are so many sub-stories going on at the same time it’s becoming difficult to keep track of everything, and the gaps between events are getting extremely long. It would be nice if everything can be brought together soon, instead of all the focus on the individual characters.

37 Comments

  1. This arc is proving to be one with the fleshed out storytelling that Bleach has needed for a while. It reminds me of what it used to be like in the beginning before it became focused on who was going to fight who (Soul Reapers vs Espada/Fullbring) and I have to say I’m really enjoying it, though this week’s cliffhanger felt a tad weak as many of us assumed Ichigo was going to lose Zangetsu weeks ago. Still, I like the way this is going and hopefully Kubo takes the time to really expand on the story of this arc and make it the best one so far.

    Also, one thing that I found that fell flat was Komamura and the large dog. I thought it would be a good bit of character development for him, as I’ve liked him ever since he fought Tousen ages back, but instead we got the dog yelling something about the world not accepting them, which would be understandable…if there had been some mention of it before now. I think throwing it in during the final arc when there’s been no mention of it before just makes it seem unnecessary. Kubo could have thought of something else if he wanted to spark a fight/ training match between the two of them.

    Celecia01
  2. While it is rather late in the series for Ichigo to be changing Zanpaktou, I can’t say that it wasn’t foreshadowed either. I think the most important facts are the following

    1) As early as the first time he pulls out Zangetsu the assistant shop owner of Urahara reacts strangely. I never figured out why until recently (at least in theory)

    2) The way the Hollow side of Ichigo reacts as it always mentions stuff like “Raise him well Zangetsu he will be mine later on”

    3) The progressively smaller screen time old man Zangetsu gets

    4) The extensive knowledge Ichigo’s Dad has of Zangetsu’s abilities and his ability to use Getsuga Tenshou as well.

    5) The flash back and the manner by which Urahara supresses the Hallow in Misaki

    Theory : I think it just points to Ichigo actually sort of borrowing Zangetsu from his Dad due to the whole thing with Misaki. It probably now points to Ichigo actually gaining his “real power”

    Juan
    1. Makes sense. Zangetsu’s enfoldment of hichigo seems to mirror Isshin using his power to keep the hollow in check. And the technique was Isshin’s in the first place.

      Since he has finally understood what he is (hollow + human + shinigami + quincy), he just needs to test out his limits and find a technique that truly belongs to him. He would need to find out the name of the technique as well as IIRC, using the name increases its power

      Zaku_Fan
      1. I think, if u take into account Zangetsu’s appearance, it is not very suprising that he might me “unfinished” or “incomplete”. I mean look at him he has only ONE arm!!
        I alway thought that something was odd about Zangetsu.

      2. @Ootani-kun:
        Zangetsu has two arms it just he always fight single-handed and keeps the other hand in his coat pockets. His overcoat is basically a shadow that hides his arms.

        ssj4jw
  3. Goddamnit, so many plot twists at the same time lol
    Best arc so far, i guess, but still, i think the “rukia’s rescue team” one was my top favorite 😀
    Anyways, looking foward for the new zanpakutou and the story of Mr.Dog and son
    Farewell, everyone xD

    danpmss
  4. Yeah it is weird that Omaeda gets any screen time at this point. After he runs away from Barragan for a few chapters, he literally disappears from Aizen’s battle. Seriously go back and try to keep track of what happened to him. You never see him fight Aizen or get slashed by him. He was so forgettable that even Kubo forgot about him. 4 pages of him just seems to buy Kubo some time…which he just keeps doing because he wants to drag things out.

  5. Agon, you work for Kurotsuchi Mayuri. He was imprisoned for what he might do, and by now he’s probably done all of them!

    Nothing this horrible bastard of a captain will do should surprise you!

    Psithief
    1. Just an idea but I think Akon will be the next Head of the Research & Developement Institute after Mayuri dies. He is perfect for the position. Nemu is just a sexbot. Akon is the real Lieutenant of the Squad.

      Kandur
  6. About Oomaeda’s sibling, surely their appearance didn’t contribute anything to the plot, but they served as an excuse to show Oomaeda and by extension Sui Feng. The point of the whole scene was to show Sui Feng training hard in order to somewhat compensate for the loss of her Bankai, and Kubo probably needed some kind of transition to show Sui Feng. Surely it wasn’t really funny, but at least it didn’t take a lot of pages. Or maybe Kubo just needed to complete the quota of 17 pages so he brought this scene ? Remember that it’s not easy to always draw 17 pages that end with a well-timed cliffhanger.
    Besides, I can totally understand people finding Oomaeda to be uninteresting, but with such a large cast it’s easy to lose track of some characters or not know what to do with them.
    My whole point is that it’s hard to write a story (especially for a guy who probably didn’t go to some writing schoool)and it can be insightful to try to be in the author’s shoes.

    Wanderer
    1. He was probably introducing the characters for the future and trying to show another face of Omaeda (even Omaeda must have a fan out there… somewhere… probably…). He can use them any time he needs them now too.

      Or maybe it was a “Even Shinigamis have families” theme.

      Ebisu
    2. Yeah but after 538 chapters and maybe a total of 3 dedicated to Omaeda. He didn’t need to introduce 2 new characters that we’ll probably never see again. All he had to do (and he did) was show two panels of Soi-Fong training, and move on. I don’t feel anything heart warming about Omaeda having 4 pages of 17 pages talking about what we could figure out from 2 panels. Kubo could have shown other characters that actually matter to the plot, like Urahara or Byakuya and how they’re doing.

  7. This chapter was really boring, nothing happened and nothing really changed. It was dissapointing and dumb. It’s like kubo is deliberately being slow as hell just to piss everyone off.

    Alcren
  8. A lot of the chapter felt like filler (especially Omaeda’s bit), which was rather annoying.

    And we still don’t know who saved Urahara’s gang in Hueco Mundo. Just bring back Grimmjow already!

    Sekai
  9. Given Kubo’s knack for keeping people alive through the most horrible and often disturbing injuries what I want to be revealed is Unohana’s fate. Then again I’ve noticed when people take godly amounts of punishment or have their insides blown away in Bleach they tend to survive (Rangiku, Momo, Hiyori etc.) while them just getting stabbed results in them dying (Like Gin) Unohana just got stabbed…so I think Kubo will go there…

    gawrshness
    1. Given that she should be able to heal herself no problem, Kubo had to pull that “There cannot be two Kenpachi kthxbye” which is even more pathetic than her Bankai having no abilities whatsoever… Almost as if Kubo was like “Oshit, I forgot to reveal her bankai before killing her, here goes nothing with the same name as her Shikai”

      Misk
  10. about time mayuri started working on some weird shit…for the mad scientist type, mayuri really doesn’t get enough limelight on his experiments…really looking forward to what he’ll come up with…

    NierTevra
  11. Omaeda’s family was actually seen before, in an omake at the end of an anime episode (of all places) where they simply introduced themselves. Odd that they’d finally appear again in the MANGA!

    starss
  12. Mayuri’s either:
    A) Resurrecting some of the old Quincy that he had studied for information.
    B) Trying to do something to his bankai
    C) Attempting to continue the hollowfication experiments Urahara and Aizen were working on.
    D) Toying with those bodies he had found in Hueco Mundo

    ion52
    1. yeah i think is option D, after all, in “The Rebooted Souls” they mentioned the secrets this arc is going to reveal, the bodies in Szayel laboratory in hueco mundo in one of them, is probably that

      Dan
    1. Hollow + Shinigami are born from a Human Soul. Quincy are special Humans… Something is here not right. How can a mere Human exist in this Quadro loop? Sure the Human can be a Filter to join the Hollow and Shinigami Powers, like Demon and Angel. But how plays a Quincy Powers here into all this?

      Germanguy
      1. Perhaps this…
        Hollow = Shadow knight
        Shinigami = Paladin
        Quincy = Magician

        So, Ichigo is now a combine of a Shadow knight+Paladin+Magician? A Double forced Fighter with high Magic abilities, he can surpass even the old Captain Commander, or Rukia’s Brother

        Germanguy

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