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Bleach 420

[scanlation by Binktopia]

From the plethora of available “420” jokes, let’s just go with something like “wasn’t that the only way to enjoy Bleach anyway?” and move on.

After some flashback pages of the earlier fight between Ichigo and post-Fountain of Youth Zangetsu, the twist is finally revealed: the “Final Getsuga Tenshou” is when Ichigo himself becomes Getsuga.

The important note: I don’t find this terrible. I still think it’s stale and uninteresting to have Ichigo become taller, older, and longer-haired, and I certainly have to laugh at the Hot Topic-catalog laziness of designing Final Form Ichigo with flowing black hair, black fabric, and a black aura, but I will give some credit to Kubo: this concept is acceptable. To defeat Aizen, whose abilities are “broken” (despite being improperly written in the last few chapters), Ichigo needed to achieve some kind of powerup that wasn’t just a linear increase in strength. There’s no telling how deep Kubo will go into the concept, and it’s entirely possible that the spiritual evolution part of the process will be conveniently forgotten and/or rewritten as though this is a linear powerup, but from initial indication, “becoming Getsuga” seems to work.

Twist of the week

The less-important note:

Have fun, yaoi fans

The rest of the chapter is pretty standard Bleach: Venom/Aizen gets pissed and yells too much, and Ichigo uses a big monochromatic attack.

Background of the week

Final Flash: Not “good,” but “good for a recent Bleach chapter,” meaning surprisingly acceptable overall.

  1. Samuel
    September 16, 2010 at 3:52 pm

    Hello again, I just was waiting for this to be posted so I could comment.

    I know you guys said in the recent podcast about how you try and not ‘hate’ bleach, but have more, fallen out of love with it. Which is fine, and no-one can stop you.

    You also said that some people still like it, well, as much as people would troll those who like Bleach I will admit it. I have read over 150+ Manga titles, and Bleach is still one of my favourites. Because it was my first ever one? Maybe. Probably. But it is just human nature to compare things to what you already know or have seen.

    Having read over like 75 Shounen Manga, I (like you at Shounen Beam) can tell when something is lame/boring/generic. Ie, Reborn right now. :|

    But, I still love Bleach, why? Mainly Characters, to name one that I think is just fantastic would be:
    Mayuri Kurotsuchi (12th Division Captain).

    tl’dr, I understand your hate for Bleach, I understand its flaws. But I cannot help but love it, and I would like to think that doesn’t make me a ‘noob’, having read dozens upon dozens of series that vary I would hope that doesn’t make me seem like a bias Bleach fan.

    But, Anyways enough of that… This chapter. I loved it, which is a change considering the recent events, and as I could read, you said it was ‘good’ in Bleach terms. So we are on the same wavelength in terms of our opinions of Bleach.

    I like the design, it’s dark and sinister and has the ‘badass; feel too it, contrasting from the Emo-Ichigo. Imo, Aizen will lose, he will die. And ‘somehow’ the main antagonist will reveal him/her/themselves.

    A few things to note, Kubo still re-iterated a few times in the Hm arc through both Grimmjow and Ulquiorra how Orihime was ‘One of them’. I still think/hope this will develop soon after and her character will become more bearable.

    So yeh, A good chapter considering the recent events.
    Sorry for the long-ass post…

  2. September 16, 2010 at 7:00 pm

    I agree wholeheartedly that characters can really make a manga. And I think bleach has some fairly interesting characters (I’ve always enjoyed Kenpachi myself). That said, I also think it has a lot of uninteresting characters who get entirely too much screentime as the expense of the story. My personal opinion is that a manga can only really sustain up to a certain limit of fully developed characters. What bleach did in the hm arc and afterwards was to show off every single one of them, in individual hollow vs. shinigami fights. It’s hard to stay deeply connected with any one character when they get that little screentime. The twist-based writing style doesn’t exactly help make those fights more interesting, either, nor does the ultimate irrelevancy of those fights in the grand scale of the battle between the two forces. And it just dragged and dragged for a couple years like that. I like the war arc of one piece for an example how post-hm bleach could have been better handled; there are lots of people fighting, but only the progress of a few key characters is actively followed, making it easier to get emotionally involved, and finishing in about 30 weeks.

    You’re free to like what you want. I’m not the thought police. As a huge fan of Akikan and Kaiji both, I know what it feels like to be a fan of something that gets it’s share of hate. Personally, even my favorite bleach characters don’t interest me as much as minor characters from, say, Eyeshield 21 or Ten, but that is partially a personal preference thing.

  3. mokonatopia
    September 16, 2010 at 7:27 pm

    as a girl I have to say I like Ichigo’s new form heeh. Although it reminds me of vincent from final fantasy.

  4. CostieLovesPie
    September 17, 2010 at 7:40 pm

    … Bleach is mediocre at best, i understand it has a mass of fans and that people jerk themselves off frantically to the characters.
    But i agree with the team here at shonenbeam, for me it died when the espada came into it.

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