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


The 11-second battle

Chapter 231: The Mascaron Drive

SS has now noticed what's going on, and they are panicking. Four Espada-level Arrancar have appeared in Karakura town; which is far more than they expected to show this early in the game. Ukitake sends Rukia to go back Hitsu's team up, and Orihime wants to go as well, but apparently it'll take 15 minutes to make the trip safe for humans, so she has to wait. Rukia, for her part, is just wondering why the hell the Espada are attacking so early. Meanwhile, Grimmjow's not interested in bankai, or so he claims. He's also keeping the reason he lost his arm secret, so he's obviously just trying to not show any weakness. Ichigo decides not to hold back, so he readies his mask, as an art mistake causes his bankai to briefly disappear. He knows he'll only be able to use it for 11 seconds, so after his puts it on, he attacks instantly, pressuring Grimmjow and using tricks from Hichigo's arsenal. Back with the others, Hitsu's realized that even without the seal, he can't beat even the weakest Espada without Bankai.Luppi seems to be mostly toying with his opponents, since he doesn't want a 1-on-1 match and therefore won't finish Yumichika until Ikkaku steps. Getting an idea, he asks Yammy to step back and let him fight them all, 4-on-1, getting ready to release. After our last scene change for the chapter, Urahara declares that neither Chad nor Renji are in any state to join the fight, so he'll go in their place.

Chapter 323: The Mascaron Drive 2

Hitsu rushes to stop Luppi's release, using Bankai, but to no avail. He's able to block Luppi's opening attack, though. Unfortunately for Hitsu, Luppi only used one of the eight tentacles his release gives his for that attack. The other seven move in, and Hitsu goes down. The shinigami look pretty screwed, so of course we have a scene change. Grimmjow, heavily injured, seems to starting to understand what's going on, but that doesn't stop Ichigo from pressing his attack, using more of Hichigo's moves. But then, just as he's about to finish it, his mask breaks, turning the tables once again.

Probably coincidental, but 'Mascaron' makes me think 'mask on', since Ichigo fighting his with mask on is really what separates these two chapters from the next ones. Internet translation says Mascaron means masicate in spanish, which logically should be relevant somehow. Umů moving on, Luppi's resurrecction, 'Trepadora' has always been my personal favourite, as far as the names go. It's 'Climbing Vine' in spanish, which describes the power, and 'Ivy girl' in Japanese, which describes the character; so it hits both important aspects with enough similarity between the two languages so that it still has a bit of a common theme. I'd also like to note that it was said that four Espada had come to the real world, despite only two actually being there. It's fair enough that their sensors would pick up Grimmjow as an Espada, since the arm loss shouldn't affect that, but what about Wonderweiss? He's certainly not an Espada, and if he's as strong as one, this is the absolute first thing to even suggest that. And he certainly doesn't seemed to be that much of a threat, based on the way he's been acting. Though, of course, if you think about it, I'd be pretty odd for a newly-made, not particularly intelligent Arrancar to be sent to the real world alongside three Espada if his power wasn't somehow notable, now wouldn't it?


Mascaron refers to an architecture term as well, I think. The Other Wiki says: "In architecture, a mascaron ornament is a face, usually human, sometimes frightening or chimeric whose function was originally to frighten away evil spirits so that they would not enter the building." So a mask to scare away evil? Perhaps related to Ichigo and Shinji going Vizard on Grimmjow.
MidnightOverClouds 5th Jan 11