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sahugani
May 26, 2007, 01:33 PM
Sahugani’s Bleach Review 276

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I seriously thought we'd get some new color this week

Hello all. Once again, my reviews are getting done during the weekend, but this time its not cause of personal reasons. The chapter was a bit late this week, but Kylara once again pulled through in the end and gave us our fix. Unfortunately, for some reason I was under the impression that this week would have the newest volume cover or a color spread or something, so I shamefully once again lack a Deviantart piece for the title WP. The pics for the review however come from Bludshock’s scan.


Sprenger

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He is currently the only hero literally standing

As of last week, the chapter ended with a mysterious technique from Ishida that decimates the Octava Espada. This week’s chapter starts off with an instant replay of the move followed by a play by play commentary from the Quincy. The description isn’t really all that complicated and is only informative in the fact that the liquid form of spirit energy requires an extremely high density (thus the power of the explosion) and that the seele schneider absorbs spirit particles through the pommel (which also makes sense as it is the part that is in direct contact with the “bowstring” and Ishida’s hand). It also does not really explain how it was able to avoid Zaerapollo’s weapon sealing. Perhaps when Zaerapollo claimed to have sealed Ishida and Renji’s weapons’ reiatsus, what he was really doing was severing the ability for the heroes to channel their reiatus to their weapons. As Renji’s Zabimaru is a combat type instead of a kido type, he would only need to channel large amounts of reiatsu to the sword for bankai. Ishida though has weapons based solely on the transfer of spirit energy through artifacts to form weapons. If the seele schneider can reform its blade without Ishida’s power for a time, then Ishida can bypass Zaerapollo’s trap by supplying reiatsu directly to the blades without his powers guiding it and letting them act on their own. This is the theory I’ll be sticking with until we get a bit more info.


Shared Pride

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someone explain why they became friends so fast

After explaining the technical aspect of his technique, Ishida makes sure to give due credit to Renji for supplying him with the time to set it up. Renji in a similar fashion yields that he could not have done anything by himself anyways. This is a continuation of the odd trust they put in each other last week in preparation for this powerful attack. As I mentioned last week, it is odd for two people to get along so well who not only embody different sides of a hate/hate relationship but also are the only ones among the rescuing crew who have had basically no past interaction with each other. I don’t know about you, but this boggles my mind a bit even considering the fact that they are in a life or death fight. Luckily for my sanity though, the manner in which they show appreciation for each other is somewhat less than humble. Renji doesn’t say “thank you” outright and Ishida arrogantly finishes the exchange of words with some self praise.


Consequence of a Variable

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either those are just frames or that is strong ass glass

We turn back to the fighter on the other end of the Quincy blast, who needless to say is not in the best of moods at this point. The only part of him undamaged by the blast are his glasses (or fractured hollow mask) as his once undamaged appearance is now stained to every inch with blood and his once perfect posture is now hunched in pain. I’ll get more to the meaning of that later. It is also noticeable that he does not have a visible hollow hole (and now that I mention it, none of his fraccion seem to have one either). While it has been a trend for the arrancar to move their hollow holes to other parts of the body, if his does exist it would have to be on one of the legs or it would seemingly replace another preexisting hole. This is just one of the many inconsistencies regarding this character that has seemingly gone unnoticed by his opponents. Since this cannot be attributed to a simple mistake by Kubo, I am quite certain now that there is some significance to the vanishing and reappearance of his zanpakuto. I really hope we get some explanation for these unarrancar-like oddities eventually.


Sacrifice to Science

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i'm not even gonna bother saying anything

I mentioned before that his entire appearance and posture has been altered after the blast and there is symbolic significance to it. I think that this is best shown through his next action of EATING A SUBORDINATE!!! He has ceased to maintain the appearance of a scientist and now acts as a mere cannibalistic beast. He clearly redefines the term “mad scientist” as he has reached a new level of disregard for moral standards of science to the point where it cannot even be called science anymore. He has created a hierarchy where the lives of his subordinates are not only disregarded, but are considered only to exist for the purpose of serving his every need (including nourishment). After he eats the fraccion and heals his wounds, he even “corrects” Ishida by calling himself a genius instead of a monster. The action is reminiscent of his entire personality. His only interest is to analyze and understand everything. He spared nothing in his pursuit of knowledge and came up with this barbaric technique. He calls it genius because he has no concept of an ethical boundary in experimentation.


Wardrobe Malfunction

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i wonder what Kado thinks about glasses characters

Somewhat randomly, Zaerapollo makes his leave so that he can go change his outfit, which on the surface seems completely absurd, but makes sense with a bit of thought. While that seems strange in and of itself, it is compounded by the fact that Ishida and Renji let him go, but that too is actually quite logical. The excuse of changing clothes is merely a joke to avoid having either side admit that they need a tactical retreat. Zaerapollo, being an extreme analyst and perfectionist, cannot live with the fact that he was unprepared for the Quincy technique. His real reason for retreat is to once again review his data on Ishida and try to perfect his defense preparations (in addition to getting a clean outfit). Renji and Ishida also need the time to recover as Ishida needs a chance to figure out Zaerapollo’s technique and Renji needs a bit of rest, thus they allowed Zaerapollo to leave. Finally, there is the third reason for the retreat more related to flow of the story. That reason is that for the next few chapters, Kubo wants all attention on another pair of combatants and doesn’t want our minds lingering on this fight.


Return of Number 6

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we need a color spread with him in a band

After Zaerapollo leaves, the scene once again shifts to Ichigo, who is laying on the ground seemingly dead with his eyes open and Nell screaming for him to wake up. While this is one of the most blatant examples in Bleach of carrying a single action for far too long (3 pages of unconscious Ichigo and crying Nell), the final page makes up for it with the return of Grimmjow. I am somewhat undecided as to whether I like this or not as it fits for the most part with an older theory of mine, but it looks like it will directly contrast my more recent one. At the start of Ichigo’s fight with Ulquiorra, I said that the Espada would not fight and the match with Ichigo would be passed to Grimmjow. The general gist of this is true as Ulquiorra did not put much effort into the fight (no release) and walked off, though he did kill or nearly kill Ichigo during his exit. Now that Grimmjow has shown up the theory is coming true. On the other hand, I did not like the idea of Grimmjow’s reason for taking Orihime being to heal Ichigo. Assuming that is now the case, I guess I underestimated the damage Ichigo actually sustained in his fight. As Orihime had previously brought the dead to life, I thought it would seem anticlimactic to then merely heal wounds, but if Ichigo is in the same state as Menoly (not quite as obviously though) then it could work alright. I also figured that the black shroud that fell over Ichigo a few chapters back was the signal of his entry to the inner world, but I guess it could have been more of a metaphor for death or lost hope, which Orihime will return to him and the sight of one another will rekindle each’s hope and power. I can’t wait for the Grimmjow battle, but doubt that GJ will actually die at the end of it as I still really like the idea of him taking out Tousen at the end of the arc.


Overall

This was quite an odd chapter. In regards to the Zaerapollo fight, it gave us one of the most horrific actions by an enemy yet and then brought the fight to a sudden and oddly explained temporary hold so that our attention can shift to the all important Grimmjow fight. That was the basic purpose of this chapter, to give us some temporary closure on one storyline so that we can enter another with singular attention. The cannibalism was just thrown in as something extra. I assume there will be some mixed reactions to this chapter, but I enjoyed it personally. How often do you get to see cannibalism in a manga?

Serpent
May 27, 2007, 09:45 AM
Good review sahugani.
Except for the whole cannibalism thing this was a rather boring chapter so i don't have much to say.

gigantor21
May 27, 2007, 10:28 AM
^ Agreed.

Sahugani, I liked your take on the 2nd United Front. I never thought about their relationship that way, but it certainly seems random when I do. But I'd say the tag-team thing was functional, not indicative of a new friendship, since they both have a common enemy right now. Ishida has a similar relationship with Ichigo, after all--they definitely can't be considered friends, no matter how much Kubo tries to imply it.

sahugani
May 27, 2007, 11:14 AM
i agree that the cooperation and trust was born from neccessity from the common enemy as you said. my big issue is that i cannot recall either of them ever thanking Ichigo after teaming up with him, but they decide to make a point of it now that they've basically had their first real interaction between the two of them. maybe its just that Ichigo is just unlikable

gigantor21
May 27, 2007, 11:56 AM
^ Ichigo, unlikeable? Compared to Ishida, he's the most extroverted person in the series.

In regards to Ishida and Renji, I don't see why Kubo would go out of his way to try and solidify their relationship now. Since they're already on the same side, there's no point. We have enough contentious relationships in the series as it is.

Quartz-pebble
May 27, 2007, 11:23 PM
Also, it should be noted that all three of them are pretty frigging full of themselves. :P

roxas_strife
May 30, 2007, 03:02 PM
Sahugani you are so cool you actually look into the series like I do and I like your out look on Bleach alot you have some awsome opinions and I like to read about how you think on chapters Bleach is my favorite series and I love finding someone who actually knows alot about and thinks about it like I do you are so cool ^-^