Bleach 627: The Creation Chapter Assessment

This chapter was somewhat lite, but it did make my heart beat faster. After getting into the Valley of Screams and moving in closer to the Soul King Palace, Ichigo and his group are now about to get out there and face the Quincies once more. At the same time, the Shinigami in Seireitei have completed a gate to the city of the Soul King Palace and are also about to get out there.

Apparently, both parties will arrive within the perimeter of the Soul King Palace. I’m guessing they will attack at the same time? But, I was actually anxious because what if the Quincies would also attack immediately after both parties would arrive within the Soul King Palace’s city? It’s like seeing a tactical strategy game!

Once Ichigo and his party arrived, they noticed that the surroundings look very different. They actually thought that they were in the wrong place but actually, it really is the Soul King Palace’s city. Apparently, Yhwach has reshaped the entire place to reflect Quincy architecture and landscape, which obviously irritates Yoruichi Shihōin.

This development made me wonder what has happened to Ichibē Hyōsube. Has he truly given up, believing that there is no way they could defeat Yhwach?

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Bleach 625: Living Jaguar Chapter Assessment

Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez is back and he is looking to be in top form! The panther has truly returned!

Not just him, actually. We also see Nelliel Tu Odelschwanck, who still has an obvious crush on Ichigo. And, she is in her adult form! All thanks to the genius that is Kisuke Uraha, we are going to see Nel Tu mostly in her adult form. Sweet! And with Nel Tu around, we see Orihime Inoue innocently blushing jealously. Typical love triangle that will never see the light of day as Bleach will NEVER focus on the protagonists’ romantic relationships. Oh well.

Not only do we get appearances from former Espada Arrancar, we also get a couple of former Xcution Fullbringers: Riruka Dokugamine and Yukio Hans Vorarlberna. I actually did not bother to comprehend their roles and abilities, The Valley of Screams, and whatnot. All I know is that Riruka and Yukio have abilities that can be used to move through The Valley of Screams in order to get to the Soul King Palace and launch a surprise attack.

How they are going to attack and best Yhwach and his constituents, I do not know. If we are to compare Yhwach and Ichigo’s teams based on strength and power, Yhwach is still in the win. 😦

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Bleach 624: The Fang Chapter Assessment

This has been a much-wanted breather chapter for me. In here, we see what is going on in Seireitei from an owl’s eye view: Shinigami and Quincy working together. We also see Sōsuke Aizen recovering from the earlier Quincy attack with more references to how powerful he is.

On the other hand, we finally get a glimpse on what is happening to Ichigo Kurosaki and his group. And finally, we get some comic relief. It feels like a long time since we last laughed on a Bleach chapter; thank goodness for Yoruichi Shihōin and the way she treats Ichigo. Ha! Ha! Thankfully too, her arm has been regenerated with the help of Orihime Inoue powers.

We also got to see what happened when they fell from the Soul King’s palace and were shot down by Ishida. It is a good thing Orihime is given significant roles, and is not just a background player in this arc.

And… Kon! Oh my goodness! I almost forgot the character that is Kon! He is actually a favorite of mine, though mostly an underdog in this series. But man! Thank goodness he was allowed to tag along to Soul Society and actually try to save Ichigo and company (which he actually did :P)

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Bleach 620: Where Do You Stand Chapter Assessment

This chapter of Bleach is one that focuses on a specific moment, making it seem like a slow story progression. However, with the action sequences, it would seem fast-paced. Also, this is another of those chapters that are not really encouraging; it was really depressing. Uryū is still fighting his friends, like he has truly become one of Yhwach’s henchmen. Yoruichi Shihōin is still not visible here; I do hope she is fine.

Overall, it is just one of those Bleach chapters wherein the bad guys seem to win and you just go, “Ugh!” Plus, considering that Yhwach is crazy powerful, and also, recalling Ichibē Hyōsube’s statement that they “cannot win”, it would seem that the world really will end. I mean, Ichigo Kurosaki does not have power to go up against Yhwach, does he? That was actually well-established when Ichibē could not defeat Yhwach. So, what now? You might as well end the series on a depressing note.

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Chapter Disappointment: Uryū still siding with Yhwach; and Yhwach absorbing Mimihagi and is about to take everything that “belonged” (past tense) to the Soul King. The elite Sternritter are well and fully powered.

Chapter Approval: None. Another chapter of despair.

Chapter Witticism: None.

Chapter Cliffhanger: Where is Yoruichi Shihōin? What happened to Ichigo and everyone else? And what happened to Jūshirō Ukitake after what happened to Mimihagi? And, will somebody, please, pretty please stop Yhwach and his plans, if ever that is possible?

Bleach 619: The Betrayer Chapter Assessment

I was excited with Bleach when Ichigo Kurosaki finally entered the fight against Yhwach. It was a long time coming, due to Bleach’s slow pace / bits-of-the-story-per-chapter style. I’m not really a fan of this, but it is necessary to portray the exquisite and elegant illustrations seen on every page: Simple panels with restrained drama. And now, finally, we get to see Uryū Ishida firing his bow.

619CoverNow, I was skeptical that Uryū really pledged allegiance to Yhwach. I thought, maybe he is just playing along to the whole Quincy thing and in the end, will “betray” Yhwach. Then again, Yhwach has the power of “The Almighty”, so, I don’t know. But it really is pissing me off seeing him go against his friends. He is getting to be a real anti-hero in this manga.

Chapter Disappointment: Uryū still seemingly keeping sides with Yhwach and Mimihagi torn off the Soul King.

Chapter Approval: None, really. Kind of a depressing chapter.

Chapter Witticism: None. It’s one of those chapters painted in all seriousness.

Chapter Cliffhanger: Yoruichi Shihōin is wounded here, and I do hope she does not die. Please, please, please, not another death in Bleach!