Bleach Manga Breakdown The Return….
Awe all, been a while but as the year reaches its climax and with it the festive season, family, work etc commitments begin to take its toll but while I have a gap would like to look through the past couple of chapters highlighting the best and worse moment. Important facts that could easily be missed and crazy theories stemming from the pieces of information we have received. Though an over all feel of Bleach is difficult to determine with so many chapters that need to be covered. I can say however that Kubo has kept me interested in recent week, I find myself looking forward to the next chapter of Bleach. While although I enjoy manga’s like Naruto, if we look at scale Bleach’s mini war and Naruto’s single battle seem to have taken up about the same amount of chapters which is refreshing. Kubo could of continued the battle chapters for a lot longer then he did but instead he gave us bits and pieces and let us think up the rest knowing that Soul Society was defeated.
I would say of all the chapters I am going to review this was my least favorite, with the main highlight being the subtle suggestions of Ichigo’s Quincy Hybrid identity hinted by him being able to escape Krige’s prison and the ability he seemed to gain from absorbing his surroundings like a true Quincy. Though Ichigo’s strength seemed underwhelming though I hadn’t really expected more so early in the arc.
Chapter 514 – Born in the Dark
This was by far a more interesting chapter confirming all we speculated the previous chapter. Ichigo’s birth seems to be shrouded in even more mystery. Many will remember one of Kubo’s greatest trolls, when Aizen spoke of Ichigo’s birth and that Ichigo is Half Shinigami and then ending the chapter to only reveal the following chapter that he said Human and not Quincy/Hollow as many predicted. This Chapter confirmed that Ichigo’s parents are One part Shinigami and One part Quincy.
We also see that the Quincy have a particular weakness being unable to remain in Soul Society for more then a specific period of time and Aizen being able to alter Juha Bach perception of time. The chapter ends with Ichigo’s Blade being destroyed which forms part of the motive of the next few chapters.
Chapter 515 – Relics
A strange break from the current arc that had been so battle focused that now reading a chapter without any battle or stress of another character dying we get push back into the systems Soul Society use which are very militaristic in nature. Also understanding why the 4th Squad Captain and members where not deployed was nice for Kubo to write in though most people would of come to a similar conclusion.
I felt so so about this chapter, I felt both happy and sad at the same time. Hearing Byakuya was still alive or in a coma (which basically means he is coming back) was really annoying, after all that build up and emotions from the battle with F for Fear, Kubo quickly takes it away from us. Now as many will know I am an advocate for Death in manga, I believe that a writer must be able to remain realistic to the facts of death with the exception of maybe the main character having a form of plot armor. Books like G.R.R Martins A song of Ice and Fire and the comic book series The Walking Dead use this theme almost to the extreme but the plot doesn’t suffer from it since a reader is always wondering what will happen next. I thought that maybe Kubo would state his intent with this arc but removing arguable the two most loved characters of the series. Though if I had to be honest I was glad to hear Kenpachi made it but Byakuya should of remained dead.
Kyouraku seems to have taken the role of Captain Commander, I really enjoyed his character calming the other Captains and still remaining true to the old man’s legacy. Even an underlying message that we cannot be consumed with grief and held back by relics of the past that cannot be change but instead look forward etc.
Chapter 516 – The Zero Squad
Better known as the day One Piece drawing style entered Bleach, now there was nothing wrong with the chapter, there was a good blend of humor something Bleach has been lacking of late but the biggest reveal since Aizen’s “Betrayal” was received with an over the top comical theme, the new characters look like they belong in another manga and not the dark edge of Bleach these characters would be a stretch for even Naruto to pull off.
Though as someone once told me, “Don’t judge a book by its cover” but that guy looked shady so what does he know… Covers are what can make or break a character in this sort of manga, If Byakuya or Kenpachi where revealed to look anything like this group of misfits the manga would probably of been canceled a while ago already. This form of Character design works with some manga’s like One Piece and Fairy Tail but here it seems off and out of place with Spider lady and Elvis look alike seemingly the only characters that seem believably powerful?
Though I can sort of understand his mentality with these designs, maybe the contrast between the Quincy dark tones and looks was taken into account and when you think about how long these characters would of sat around doing nothing. You may be able to see how the sword rusted in time.
But here Kubo made a big mistake, he had on opportunity to introduce the Zero Squad and he wasted it on comic relief, making one or two comical and the others dark characters or similar to the characters Juha explained while battling Yammamoto would of been far more effective.
Chapter 517 – Stairway to Heaven
It’s funny how Kubo titles his chapters and then has that have nothing to do with the current chapter but instead the following one. Zero Squad literally only ended with the Zero Squad arrival while this chapter focuses mostly on getting to know the new characters. It was interesting to see and a small display of the new characters powers and overall strength. It makes me wonder if they will do another “Rewind” Mini Arc to explain all the connections and friendships that have formed from Zero Squad before they became the Zero Squad.
Ichigo going to the Palace and Kenpachi/other less important character 😛 was also interesting to see. I personally hope its for a special training and maybe the unlocking of Kenpachi’s Bankai. How would you guys feel about finally seeing Kenpachi’s Bankai?
I loved the ending of 517 and this motivational page does perfectly reflect the feeling I got from reading 518. We have this big reveal and still Kubo “Hides” the identity of the “Mystery man” though from reading it, I have a very strong feeling it is Grimmerjow, Ichigo’s “main” enemy in the beginning of the Arrancar Arc. The speech style and overall feel of the “Clues” Kubo gives seems to point that way.
Though besides that the chapter felt like a whole lot of word with very little substance… It was light and fluffy but I felt like beside its ending it seemed like a filler chapter. With the arrival of some older characters we hadn’t seen in ages. The Fullbring Page was the highlight of the chapter and helps bring together all the previous chapters of Bleach into one final mega arc 🙂
Well that is all I got for this weeks Breakdown ^__^
Pein out ^:__:^