「HEART of WOLF」
The latest episode of Bleach: Sennen Kessen-hen – Ketsubetsu-tan has some major bad news for Bambietta as she takes on Komamura at his most vengeful. But while he suffers the consequences of his revenge plot, Mask de Masculine uses the powers of professional wrestling to take on Ikkaku, Yumichika, and Hisagi.
HE’S GOT THAT DOG IN HIM
Komamura regaining his Bankai wound up not being the best when he wagers his body on the one attack that takes out Bambietta. It is sad to see how, in hindsight, what happens to him isn’t far off from how Tousen and the other wolves in his clan had let vengeance come at such dire costs. Although death wasn’t waiting for Komamura, turning into a life-like wolf will likely take him out of commission as far as any fights involving swords go.
I wasn’t expecting Bambietta to screw up this badly, considering how much they were hyping her up as this destructive force. But I suppose their main intent was to get all the build-up out of the way so that she’d flame out hard during her first major fight. And since it leans right into Giselle’s contingency plans for her, Bambietta feels like she’s mostly an accessory to show off exactly what Gigi and her friends are like on the battlefield.
WE HAVE TO PUSH MASK FOR SUMMERSLAM
The other main fight of the episode was Ikkaku, Yumichika, and Hisagi’s encounter with the wrestler quincy Mask De Masculine and his manager James. They do feel like the kind of characters that Bleach throws in there for comic relief regardless of whether it’s funny or obnoxious. But admittedly, the wrestling jokes land a lot more easily than the flamboyant antagonists or food-themed goofballs.
Leaning on wrestling tropes also allow for Kubo to show off his homework by channeling popular wrestler gimmicks into how he and James’ abilities operate. Namely, James reviving Mask through his cheers automatically reminded me of some of the popular babyface wrestlers who only woke up or broke a submission hold after hearing their fans’ cheers. It is as hokey as the humor can get in this series, but it’s the charm and camp that sustains its comedic gags and helps you take a character like Mask more seriously.