Bleach Episode 3 – Soul Society Invaded

It seems like getting access to new Bleach episodes on Monday is going to be tough, especially to then also review them. So instead we’ll move this show to Tuesday. With that said, back to Hueco Mundo where Kurosaki Ichigo and Nel confront Quilge and his men. Ichigo also instantly recognizes his teleporting techniques as being the same ones that Ishida uses. He confirms that they are in fact quincies to Ichigo. We cut to the Soul Society where the captains are still in their meeting. The call to prepare for war is made by the captain commander who is understandably very upset right now. 

Ichigo looking very modern and HD these days.

Ichigo is surprised to find out that the Quincy have heard of Ishida. They seem to think somewhat highly of him but refuse to elaborate.Quilge reveals now that they have a similar final move to Ishida called the Vollstandig (I don’t know what kind of drugs my translations were on, but I’m pretty sure that’s been the name in the manga for years). It’s like a bankai for quincies.
Also, it turns out that Ywach’s men lied about waiting five days to attack the Soul Society. With Ichigo distracted, the Wandenreich marches on Soul Society immediately.

The Wandenreich is to immediately invade Soul Society.

Neither fighter is able to do a lot of damage to the other, but Ichigo using a Getsuga at point blank and not even hurting Quilge a little bit is pretty telling. And here we see Quilge make use of the Quincy’ ability to absorb reishi, spirit energy. While he’s doing so he gets sucker punched by Ayon. Yeah, bet you also forgot about him. He’s the monster that dealt serious damage to the Gotei 13 soldiers during the war for Karakura. He is summoned by the three arrancar – Sun Sun, Mila Rose & Apache – offering up their arms. He’s a bit unpredictable but he definitely packs a mean punch.

Not a single thought going around in that head.

It’s very telling about Uryuu’s relationship with his father that he calls him Ryuken and not dad or father or something similar. Ryuken doesn’t want to tell Uryuu about the quincies though. He still doesn’t seem to know what’s really going on.
We get a small lecture on the history of quincies. We’ve heard this before to an extent. Soul Reapers purify hollows and have them pass over. Quincies destroy the souls completely. The way quincies do things is bad. Something about the balance of worlds being destroyed by the way they deal with hollows.
Uryuu goes to his father’s office because he wasn’t born yesterday. Here he finds some Nazi memoribilia, I mean knowledge about the quincy history. I’m going to have to hard disagree with the line “wars take place because both sides are just” though.

Stuff like this being dumped so late into the story often made me wonder if Kubo never planned for Bleach to get this far into a story.

We also learn that Kurotsuchi is responsible for the vanishing of souls as a way to balance out the mass extermination of hollows. This is very interesting because he’s been aware of Ishida from very early on, even lost a fight to the quincy, and has been talking to Yamamoto about this. Obviously the Captain Commander has been ignoring his warnings, which is very on brand for the Soul Society’s leadership. It’s also revealed that Yamamoto failed to kill Ywach once before, 1000 years ago.

History is written by the victors, Uryuu. To find the real spicy stuff you’ll need to do some digging.

After Ayon beats down Quilge he gets up again and kills Apache. Using the same power that absorbs Reishi he powers up even more this time, destroying Ayon with ease. His power is strong enough to even absorb people themselves. Is there anything this guy can’t do? Their clash continues and we see a shot of Ywach looming over the Soul Society.
Quickly cutting back to Ryuken’s office, Ishida has now learned everything there is to learn about the Wandenreich. Kajomaru is trying to make sure the rookies stay confident. That’s not a red flag at all and shit definitely doesn’t hit the fan half a second later. We get a few quick succession shots of some of our old familiar friends. Hisagi, Kira, Renji, Rukia and Lisa. It’s so good to see them all again, especially Kira, who’s had a rough time being betrayed by his captain in the previous arc, so it’s good to see him healthy and oh there goes his body. Poor dude can’t get a W. The Sternritter are here and we see some of their prominent ones.

One of, if not the most iconic panel in this arc is finally animated. Time for some genocidal fun.

With Kira down, that’s two lieutenants destroyed without getting a proper fight. I think Kubo already knew at this point in time that his days as an author for Shonen Jump were numbered. Bleach’s popularity didn’t exactly skyrocket during the Fullbringer arc so he had to go from zero to hype moments very fast. I feel like this resulted in a very rushed start to this arc, with too much happening all at once for it to feel like the natural progression of the story. It’s almost like how in Hunter x Hunter we go from an intense arc to a more fun arc and then back to a more intense arc. Except Kubo just dials up the intensity to 100 from nothing here and never looks back. Having said that, with his art being a bit lackluster in the later volumes compared to some of the early stuff, I do think that a good animation studio can really up the quality of this final arc and I’m excited to see what this season will look like. I’ve forgotten enough about this arc to be surprised by some of the things that happen. Not by Kira getting demolished though, that was pretty unforgettable. But that’s this episode of Bleach. I hope you enjoyed it, if you did leave a like and a comment below and as always, thanks for reading.

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