I’m divided on my feelings for the chapter. I’ll start off with the good: Ishida finally stepping up and doing something other than hiding in Bach’s shadow. That was nice to see, but while it seems obvious that Ishida isn’t really on the quincy’s side, why would he do something so serious as once again kill the Soul King? That’s not something he can come back from easily, so I sincerely hope there is an explanation as to why he’s going this far with whatever plan he has… unless he really is evil? That still seems very unlikely though. Another positive for this chapter was seeing Yoruichi and Pernida in action. I wish we could see a shikai or bankai from Yoruichi, since her zanpakutou is a complete mystery, but her short bout with Pernida was intense enough as it was. And that arm twist may just have been Kubo’s most gruesome injury yet. Hopefully Yoruichi isn’t out of the count soon – once her brother arrives I’m sure she’ll come back into the fold (along with the Royal Guard, hopefully).
Now, as for the bad part of the chapter, it was basically everything that Bach was spouting out. This is a complete rehash of what Aizen said back in Fake Karakura Town, except it seems like Bach is implying he didn’t really do anything directly, but his blood ties with Ichigo are what align their interests. It felt lazy of Kubo to do this ‘All According to Plan’ speech all over again.
Overview – What’s Next?:
A good enough chapter despite Bach’s speech. I like the action we got – it was very well drawn and panelled, and something I’d like to see animated one day – and hopefully now Ichigo and Ishida will have a proper confrontation. There are still several other characters in the area, as well as those who are yet to show up, so who knows how the fights are going to be set up from this point. Either way, everything is crumbling again. Better luck next time, Ukitake.