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Djudge
November 03, 2006, 10:00 PM
Thanks:

WinterLion, pocketmofo, and AkiDotress for keeping us fans afloat with scripts galore!
Bleach7 for their weekly scanlation!
Gold Knight for the original concept!



---== B L E A C H c250 - Five Ways to Three Figures ==---


http://img151.imageshack.us/img151/894/01es1.gif
TMX Elmo, eat your heart out.

1. Draw 'em Cute n' Crazed (We can dig it!)
From the angular heydays of Bleach's premiere chapters in Karakura, to the gradual cascade into fluid curving lines abound in the mid-to-late Soul Society arc, Kubo's art style is ever-maturing, specializing into more specific trends given the context of the panels currently on hand. I just want to take this particular point and address it here at the get-go seeing as how c250 is more or less a continuation of hillarity that was reintroduced into the series via the recent transplant to Hueco Mundo. The cruder look on some of the characters in these panels (especially on faces like say Ichigo or Keigo) has worked especially nicely as of late since it echoes the basic visual hallmarks of BLEACH's more lighthearted roots. Not exactly as pleasantly raw as a Tohru Fujisawa, as balls-out whimsical as an Eiichiro Oda can be, or as deadpan charming as a Kiyohiko Azuma, but definitely a working sight device that is most welcome in this series.


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I wonder if Ichigo digs Advance Wars...

2. Don't Look, Just Run
On another note, I guess those 1:1000 odds of bringing Neru back so soon ended up paying out... Personally I can't see the benefit of bringing the runt back so soon unless Kubo decided to extend the LAFFs in this chapter (which he did end up doing). Still, there's no alternate objective for Ganju, Hanatarou, Neru to head off and do... Does anyone else smell deadweight/liability? (Heck, at least Keigo had Yumichika to look out for him when Ikkaku tangled it up with Edorado)


http://img296.imageshack.us/img296/5316/03hj4.gif
Raditz Ichigo getting Gohan'd Neru'd

3. Ganju's Popularity Rank Sinks Further!
Surely if Neru's gonna break the wussy tag-along mold, there's gotta be more to this than simply rapid acceleration... wait, that's already more useful than Ganju ever was... Hmm, let's see if it plays a pivotal part later on or if this is all just a red herring.


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Legends never die; they just fade out in from time to time.

4. Characters That NEED an Awesome Return
Fan consensus on Don Kannonji was always split down the middle. Some of us dug Spontaneous Trips and the terrific BOHAHA craze; some of us... just aren't hip to it quite yet (that's okay guys, you'll find the light eventually). Still a small point of interest here is if Ichigo was scatterbrained enough to really be recalling the Don (no point to doing so anyway), or if it was just a random opportune moment for a sight gag?


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Ichigo: ZARAK!?

5. Wandering Seireitei Las Noches
One of the weakest elements of this new setting is the absolute bland backdrops that plagued Seireitei in both the manga and anime a while back. Stark white buildings with spotless roadways and mazelike interiors/monumental architecture abound. Yes folks, if you just didn't have enough of the visual sterility in Soul Society, you can have more of the same here! Can't the ground at least be somewhat dirty? I really don't think Arrancar grunts are as apt as Shinigami grunts to be walking around with brooms...


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CANON: Salvador Dali lives on as an Arrancar!

6. Cue the Generic Flamboyant Foreign Type
Dorudoni... What can I say? *sigh* I hate these types of villains since they're usually cardstock-thin and serve nothing more than to regulate tension during the build-up to some kind of climax. $5 says he and Illforte used to play matador and bull with one another.


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No more toilet paper, boss..

7. Give it a few days, this is gonna be an LJ icon.
It may be coincidence, but the way the panel was drawn here definitely struck me regarding the power structure in Aizen's ranks. On one side, we have Gin towering over Wanderweiss who has assumed a pose of general inferiority. Gin also stands in the lighted portion of the room whereas Wanderweiss is seemingly "lost" in the corner of a dimmed room. Additionally, Tousen, who is currently decidedly more "evil" (definitely crazier) than Gin at this point in the manga, resides in the deepest, darkest portion of the chamber. I'm tellin you, if this was shot on film it'd make for some interesting analyses on its mise-en-scene.


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It can silence babies AND sell cologne!

8. Deliciously Ambiguous
Is that a look of concern, anxiety, indifference, or what? Part of the mystique of character types which include Ichimaru Gin are their ability to be misread (if read in anyway at all); here's another panel that may or may not be chalked up with the stack of evidence that the fanbase has accrued for Ichimaru having ulterior motives in siding with Aizen. What do you guys think?


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Tousen, just tell him no. Trees don't do well in sand.

9. Wanderweiss and the AAAA
Yes, the Avid Arrancar Arborist Association makes its debut! Honestly though, aside from the small jab for the awkward exchange exclusive to this single panel (I personally would've extended the "s" monophone), this serves to cement an interesting relationship in the series. Warped father-son bonds? Always makes for another interesting dynamic if the defecation ever hits the ventilation within Aizen's allied goons.


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Sweat bead syndrome spreads! Ichigo stricken!

10. BLEACH c251 - Don't Call me Nino 2
Hmm, I guess it's been settled in this series a long time now, but either Shikai is glorified to the point of providing token OHKs for various characters or its rendered absolutely ineffective by so much as a focused hiccup. We saw how Hitsugaya tore up Shawlong, the former #11; any wagers on how the "kid" fares against one that's former Espada?

11. The Bottom Line: 3/5
|| F O R T H C O M I N G ||

PS: In addition to Bleach being revived 10 Comments-wise, please take a look at the work White Silver (http://mangahelpers.com/forum/index.php?topic=10495.0) and Chopper 10 (http://mangahelpers.com/forum/index.php?topic=10499.0) have done with bringing back One Piece 10C here on MH!

WinterLion
November 03, 2006, 11:02 PM
Thanks D for the comments.

Not much to comment on... it was a bit of a slow chapter. But I am interested in Neru's powers... there seems to be more behind her than what appears on the surface. The super acceleration of Neru's makes me think that there's something more.

The banter between Tousen and Gin was pretty humorous, but pretty lackluster when translated into English... :p

I'm looking forward to see some other battles though and hoping that this Ichigo is will show some good stuff in this battle.

Overall, I thought you were a bit generous in giving it three stars. :p

Luckas
November 04, 2006, 02:12 PM
Great comments, I believe you love writing them, especially a couple of them.

2. e 3. I think this 2 comments are specular either Nell is a comic relief or he has some power and role to play in the plot. Sincerely I don't know.

5. That seems lazy by Kubo, probably there is a reason for this lack of attention to landscape/scenery/setting.

7. That comment strucks me, I alwasy believed, without much thinking, that Gin was Aizen's second in comand because he was his real vice-captain (Aizen's words). But you are right in Heuco Mundo Tousen seems clearly more active, so what's the meaning of this? This could give the start to a lot of speculations, but I'm not still ready to admit Tousen has an higher rank than Gin, even in consideration of the peculiar way in which Gin acts.

8. Absolutely right. And I don't know :D

9. And you didn't mentioned the abuse of the adjective "pure" :eyeroll

Gold Knight
November 06, 2006, 10:02 PM
Good observation about the bland surroundings of the tower - but I attribute it to the architecture probably having been inspired by the Soul Society, since Aizen, Tousen and Gin are all from there originally. I do think the series could use some more interesting background art at some point though.

I would have rated it three stars myself, but oh boy, there's a definite parallel between Ichigo's first fight with Ikkaku and now his fight with Dorudoni - this arc has so far been an almost carbon copy of the Rescue Rukia arc. I'm still expecting Tite Kubo to throw in some twists when we least expect them, but so far, it's becoming kind of predictable. I'm almost expecting Ichigo to run into Grimmjow after this battle ( Grimmjow = Renji ) and then somebody even stronger ( = Kenpachi ). And of course, the Byakuya of the Arrancar would be Ulquiorra. Ugh.

Well, hopefully it won't go like that. My favorite part of this chapter was definitely the exchange between Gin and Tousen and Wonderweiss, though. That was unexpected at least.

goofy_man
November 12, 2006, 02:31 PM
I would have rated it three stars myself, but oh boy, there's a definite parallel between Ichigo's first fight with Ikkaku and now his fight with Dorudoni - this arc has so far been an almost carbon copy of the Rescue Rukia arc. I'm still expecting Tite Kubo to throw in some twists when we least expect them, but so far, it's becoming kind of predictable. I'm almost expecting Ichigo to run into Grimmjow after this battle ( Grimmjow = Renji ) and then somebody even stronger ( = Kenpachi ). And of course, the Byakuya of the Arrancar would be Ulquiorra. Ugh.
Yeah, I noticed this as well....but this is more my line of thought:

Dorudoni=Jidanbou
Yami=Ikkaku (Remember, Yami's got a bone to pick with Ichigo)
GrimmJow=Renji (yeah, the similarities between GrimmJow and Renji are too blatantly obvious; the only difference is that GrimmJow has more of Zaraki's attitude--both socially and in combat)
???=Zaraki (This is where Kubo Tite has a chance to surprise us....)
Ulquiorria=Byakuya