A Fine-tooth Plot Comb vs Fan Dumb! An in-depth Bleach liveblog


I give Aizen to much credit, and our heros are ineffective

Chapter 211: Stroke of Sanity

The arrancar defeated, Hitsu’s wounds suddenly burst open and he crashes to the ground. The timing of this seems rather odd at first glance, but upon closer inspection I realize that it’s entirely possible he was using his ice as a band-aid to stop himself from bleeding out. Renji, for his part, reflects that he only won because Yylfordt was so surprised by the unsealing that he let his guard down. He worries about Ichigo, but we’re all Genre Savvy enough here to know what tends to happen a main baddie fighting against The Hero after all of his minions die, right? Right? >.> <.< Actually, Ichigo seems to be losing. Oh, he was able to use his speed to his advantage, but it seems that’s not enough to beat Grimmjow. Ichigo launches a Getsuga Tenshou at Grimmjow, exhausting himself somewhat. Grimmjow was somewhat injured by the attack, but it only seems to have got him excited. And worse Hichigo’s acting up now. As Tatsuki watches, worried, a portal opens with a familiar looking zanpakutou visible inside.

Chapter 212: You don’t hear my name anymore

Portal opens, and then closes once Tousen steps out. He senses Grimmjow, and flash steps away. Also, he’s got a new outfit since the last time we saw him. Grimmjow really is exicited, and is about to start fighting for real. Ichigo, however, is realizing that using Getsuga Tenshou in bankai makes Hichigo stronger, and figures he can only get 2-3 more shots out before he can’t hold him back. Then suddenly Tousen. Both of them seem rather surprised by the sudden appearance of a blind, black man. Tousen explains that Aizen is angry at Grimmjow for going to the real world against a direct order, and losing five arrancar in the process, and that Tousen’s there to pick up Grimmjow. Grimmjow, somewhat reluctantly, follows Tousen into a portal back to Hueco Mundo. Ichigo yells at him not to go, saying that the fight isn’t over yet. Grimmjow disagrees, saying that it’s obvious that Ichigo can’t win, since he clearly can’t use Getsuga Tenshou, the only thing Ichigo has capable to hurting Grimmjow, freely, and anyway Grimmjow still has his released state to fall back on. Grimmjow introduces himself, saying that Ichigo had better hope he never hears that name again, since Grimmjow’ll kill him next time. The portal closes, leaving Ichigo alone. Renji comes in, questioning Ichigo about what happened, and Ichigo apparently agrees with Grimmjow’s assessment. Renji tries to encourage him, but Ichigo brushes him off, saying that he couldn’t do anything and truly lost.

I think ‘Stroke of Sanity’ probably refers to the sword stroke that is Getsuga Tenshou and the effect it’s having on Ichigo’s sanity. Add ‘You better hope’ to the other title and you get what Grimmjow said to Ichigo. Now… anyone else notice that Tousen’s response was oddly prompt? I mean, he listed ‘losing five arrancar’ among the reasons why Aizen was angry, so that must have already happened by the time he set out… but the only way that could be true and have Tousen arrive as soon as he did was if Aizen was watching, and therefore knew about the weaker arrancar going down as soon as it happened. But of course, that would mean that he waited and intentionally let the weaker arrancar go down before pulling Grimmjow back, wouldn’t it? And if that’s the case, why pull Grimmjow back in the middle of a fight he probably would have won? Combine that with the way he approved of Ulquiorra’s letting Ichigo live, and it almost seems like Aizen’s consciously ‘trying’ to make sure Ichigo survives, doesn’t it? Of course, he still would have had to give up five Arrancar for little to no reason. Unless, of course, he doesn’t really care about low-level fighters and was just looking for an excuse to punish Grimmjow for something more serious than going against orders. Or maybe I’m crazy and am reading too much into things. You decide! Also, now Ichigo’s feeling useless. He’s not the only one. I’ve previously noted how Chad and Orihime are feeling, and one can presume that Ishida isn’t exactly feeling terribly effective right now what with having no powers and all. With all four of our theoretical ‘main heros’ feeling useless and ineffective, I’d go so far as to say that the feeling of uselessness is a theme of the this part of the story.