I got a bit of insight regarding Karin's crying during the Shrieker arc, early in the series. Ichigo mentioned that up until Masaki's death, Karin was as big of a crybaby as Yuzu was, but when their mother died she never let people see her cry so as to become stronger. When in the presence of Yuichi Shibata - a spirit trapped in a parakeet's body - their closeness in age and her own budding spiritual abilities caused her to - as she told Ichigo later - feel and all-but-witness his most vivid memory, which was his mother's murder, and it drove her to tears. Obviously, she is empathising with him because of closeness in age and similar circumstances (it's not a pain you'd want anyone else to feel like that) but it's a lot deeper than that:
First off, the experience leaves her bedridden the next day, evidently from emotional sickness. She's seen trembling in bed the night leading up to that, obviously disturbed. On some level, she's suddenly feeling all that grief and sorrow that she's been bottling up since then - perhaps including what she felt about her mum's death - hit her full force. That kind of emotional strain would be immense, and would certainly explain why she was hardly able to move at all (particularly while knowing that poor boy's spirit is restless in his own grief). But it gets worse, because -
Secondly, Yuichi saw his mother murdered protecting him, and he looks to be, what, eight or nine years old? Now, how old was Ichigo when Masaki died? What, exactly, did he wake up to that day? His mother's dead body right on top of him, and it only becomes worse when you learn that Masaki was murdered. So Karin was not only feeling grief similar to her own or empathising with Yuichi - she was feeling just how her older brother must have felt at the time! Small wonder she forced herself out of bed despite her condition to find Ichigo, and finally let it out in front of him of all people, especially when he's the one in the family she's closest to personality-wise. Talk about rolling Character Development and Myth Arc into one package, and disguising it as a Monster of the Week filler-sort of episode ... Tite Kubo is a fucking genius!
Yeah, don't say that last part out loud...
Soul Society Arc
The moment when Captain Aizen was revealed to be the Big Bad in Bleach, I thought it was something like the epitome of Ass Pull, especially considering that he was supposed to be dead. Then I realized that they'd probably been planning this practically since they killed him, and if not at least a while before The Reveal, because they'd been foreshadowing it since before they killed him.
Kenpachi's inner debate while he's fighting Tousen during the Soul Society arc turns out to be brilliant after the fact when we see what tactic he actually used. The illusion of Yachiru advises him to swing wildly, which he dismisses as useless. Ikkaku advises him to use the mind's eye, which he dismisses because he can't do it. Yumichika advises him to give up beautifully, which he dismisses indignantly. Then he gets his brainwave - since Tousen has to hold one end of the sword, if the sword is pinned in one spot, Tousen will be easy to locate and grab. The only way to pin the sword is to bury it in his body. In other words, he quits fighting in order to tank a sword to the gut, thereby letting him locate and grab Tousen. In other words, he took Yumichika's advice, after all - and he interpreted it in a way that was beautiful for his Blood Knight aesthetics.
During the Soul Society arc, I always wondered why Byakuya didn't just kill Ichigo on the bridge, when Ichigo and Rukia were bickering. Ichigo was clearly distracted, and he could've killed him in seconds. Then, when everything about Hisana is revealed and we see that Byakuya was a lot more conflicted than he let on, you realize he was probably stalling on purpose. He had the perfect opportunity to kill Ichigo, but waited until after Ichigo and Rukia were finished to do anything.
Yamamoto's comment on Negacion, which Aizen and his Co-Dragons use to make their escape: "Inside that light is an isolated and unaffected world. The moment that light came down, we could no longer touch Aizen." Becomes doubly significant considering what the databooks reveal about Aizen, that he always felt alone and isolated - the light symbolizes all that led him onto the path of godhood!
Ichigo survives a near killing from Byakuya and Renji, the rescue Rukia team lands safely and away from dangers when entering soul society, Ichigo's healing rate is extremely fast, Renji lives from Ichigo's attack, Ichigo lives a sure death battle with captian Kenpachi Zaraki, Gounju lives from Byakuy's attack and Ichigo shows up to save the day, Renji surviving Byakuya's bankai at point blank range, Ichigo masters bankai stops a super weapon beats Byakuya, Ichigo surviving near dissection and Renji and Byakuya living the aizen assault, everyone's extreme luck with no casualties while attacking a super power coincidence no because Rukia was at the center of it all. And what did Rukia have with her… the hougykou: the magic genie that grants its users will and makes shit happen like save people from certain death and gives power ups
Hueco Mundo Arc
I found the way Rukia defeated Aaroniero to be fairly interesting upon further examination. Earlier on, when Rukia used the double chant to attack him, he mentions that Kaien doesn't remember anyone except Byakuya possessing that ability. When Rukia finally gets out of her Heroic BSOD caused by realizing that Aaroniero really has Kaien's body within him, she uses Shirafune, a previously unmentioned technique, to defeat him. It's actually quite interesting if you remember that Rukia realized the limitations of Kaien's memories after her previous attack, and decided to use an attack that Aaroniero couldn't know about to defeat him. While her emotional attachment to Kaien, her guilt over her death and his knowledge of her fighting style had weakened her before, she used her knowledge of the person he was to claim victory in the end. — Rampulus
There is another instance of brilliance here. Back when Kenpachi was fighting Nnoitra, he commented on how he met many guys who claimed they couldn't be cut, much like Nnoitra. He told Nnoitra that in those experiences, he found that there was no opponent he ever fought who could survive getting their neck/throat being cut open, or being stabbed through the eye. When Hisagi stabbed Tousen, he stabbed him STRAIGHT THROUGH THE NECK, one of two parts of the body that no matter how much reiatsu you have, is not protected by a Shinigami's overflowing reiatsu, or an Arrancar's Hierro. In other words, it wasn't an event that ignored the difference in power; Hisagi simply aimed straight for the weakest spot on Tousen's body. It also gives a little insight into the Zanpakuto spirit Kazeshini's personality, and Hisagi's own supressed nature: he used a tactic that Kenpachi himself has used in the past, hinting at Hisagi's hidden and suppressed Blood Knight side.
Hisagi's attack is an example even further, as way back in some of the earliest episodes, Rukia mentions that Shinigami train themselves to attack the back of the neck. Specifically, this is because breaking off a Hollow's mask risks showing them the person they were in life. This makes quite a bit of sense from Hisagi's perspective in this moment since he's attacking Tousen from behind to avoid reminding himself of who exactly it is that he's attacking. This one was called back to even further, as when Ichigo breaks out of Hueco Mundo and attacks Aizen, the back of the neck is the first place he aims his attack to. It was effectively the first time Ichigo was truly willing to take a non-Hollow life and was adhering to Rukia's advice so he wouldn't have to look at Aizen's face (and is also a really good way to get the drop on somebody).
Another piece of fridge brilliance, for those who are pulling their hair out over why Ichigo has been struggling to beat his opponents whereas Captains he'd previously bested were having better odds. You want to know why the Captains were so late? It was because Urahara had been working on stablising the Garganta (the gate to Hueco Mundo) so that Captain-Level Shinigami could pass through at full power. So chances were, because Ichigo was so impatient, he used the Garganta before it was ready (evident by Soul Society's initial refusal to participate in the rescue), and thus as a result wasn't able to use his full power in Hueco Mundo. It wasn't Bad Ass Decay, it was Ichigo's own unwillingness to wait before going off to rescue Orihime that was holding him back. This of course only stands if he regains his badass by going back to either soul society or the human world, so until then...
No. He fights Grimmjow in the human world and in Hueco Mundo. He utterly gets his ass kicked in the first fight, while when he fights Grimmjow in Hueco Mundo he's only losing by a small margin in the beginning, when he has no mask and Grimmjow is unreleased. I know his hollow had something to do with his loss in the human world, but it didn't interfere until Ichigo used Getsuga Tensho, and he was getting shitkicked way before that.
It could maybe simply that Hueco Mundo's atmosphere is detrimental or harmful to humans and shinigami, far more than it is to Hollows. This would make sense since the world is entirely populated (with the rare exception) by Hollow creatures. So, since Ichigo has been fighting in this world for quite a while, it could be fatiguing him, impairing his ability to fight.
It must also be considered that Ichigo has simply been exerting himself, by running and fighting for who knows how long in Hueco Mundo (and possibly keeping his Bankai active for the entire duration of his stay). He was killed by Ulquiorra once, but was saved by Orihime's miraculous healing ability, and then only barely won his fight against Grimmjow before being beaten down by Nnoitra. Does that not account for battle fatigue?
Doesn't the revelation during the Lost Agent arc that Ichigo's combat pass given to him by Ukitake was used to monitor him and supress his power explain perfectly why Ichigo was weaker during the Heuco Mundo arc.
Nel's saliva is a healing solution. Human saliva contains a chemical that does accelerate healing in Real Life. Congratulations, Kubo.
About the Narm-King Zommari Rureaux. His powers, on a second thought, are extremely dangerous If you don't know about that kido-barrier spell anyway, as he has to look at your head to defeat you, so, why he's just the Septima Espada, Reishi levels besides? Because he's too dumb and careless with his powers, making him a lesser threath than other high-level Espada.
The aspect of death he represents is intoxication.
Hitsugaya's team practising bankai in the human world. Yumichika gives up training in frustration at his zanpakutou's refusal to cooperate with him, saying he's incapable of it. But his fights with Hisagi and Charlotte reveal he's hiding his zanpakutou's power from Ikkaku (and others), and the method he uses to achieve this is to call his zanpakutou by a name it loathes to deliberately prevent it from cooperating with him and releasing its power. Now take this knowledge back to that training session and what do we notice? Not only is the training occuring in front of Ikkaku, but Yumichika is using the zanpakutou's loathed nickname. In other words, Yumichika was deliberately sabotaging his own training to protect his secret.
And if you subscribe to the theory that Yumichika having a Kido-type release in a Melee-type Company is the Bleach analogue to Don't Ask, Don't Tell, like this troper does, then you may come to the conclusion that Yumichika sabotaging his training in front of Ikkaku to keep his release a secret is the equivalent of a Straight Gay cockblocking himself on purpose in front of his straight buddies.
Just a random thing this troper noticed - maybe a weird sort of Call Back? When a Hollowfied Ichigo is fighting Grimmjow, Orihime thinks about how Ichigo doesn't 'see' her/didn't come for her. Later on, when he's fighting Ulquiorra and taken over by his Superpowered Evil Side, Orihime is the only thing he seems to 'see'. - Ody
One off the reasons why Zommari lose so quickly against Byakuya (other than misusing his powers?) When you think carefully about it, Byakuya's power is perfect against a power like the one of Zommari. Against another opponent things may have gone differently...
Ichigo's second Hollow form was quite possibly a massive foreshadowing on Kubo's part. Not a Resurrección as some people would think (and not a Vasto Lorde, please, go consult the Bleach Wiki or the manga and anime to hear how a Menos reaches the level of Vasto Lorde). During Ichigo's first battle with Hichigo, he gave Ichigo a little lecture.
"Ichigo, I don't know if you understand or not,...but, Zangetsu and I have always been one and the same. Both Zangetsu and I are a part of your spiritual power, and I was apart of Zangetsu! We all share the same body, and whenever the 'dominant' person changes, the outer appearance also changes. When one is dominated by 'life', one is flesh. When one is dominated by 'death', one becomes bones."
Therefore, if one thinks of Zangetsu and Hichigo as "Life and Death", Zangetsu will always be Ichigo's source of power as long as he is alive, and thus Ichigo's appearance remains that of a human and flesh. When Ichigo dies, Hichigo, in an effort to preserve his own existence, takes over, and Ichigo's form takes the thin and skeletal appearance of his Full Hollow form.
Disregarding the fact that that Ichigo's Hollow form was already shown and looked nothing like that.
Another possible foreshadowing of Ichigo's second Hollow form appearing may have come when Orihime was trying to heal Ichigo after he was killed by Ulquiorra, she said there was strange spiritual energy swirling around Ichigo's wound that even she couldn't reject, this could have been Hollow Ichigo simultaneously keeping Ichigo alive while keeping Orihime from healing him and trying to force its way to the surface, but wasn't powerful enough at the time to fully take control.
At the end of the Hueco Mundo arc, Aizen's actions seem contradictory. He says he has no further use for Inoue, but he has Starrk abduct her from Zaraki and Ichigo and places her in Tower No.5 so they can "rescue her", despite the fact she had effectively been rescued already. But when you remember that Aizen left Ulquiorra behind to look after Las Noches, and then fast-forward to Aizen's claim of having arranged Ichigo's battles to his liking, the brilliance sets in. By doing what he did, Aizen effectively arranged things so Ichigo would be forced to fight Ulquiorra.
Regarding Luppi, and his Resureccion, I noticed something. Out of every Espada, or everyone who's ever even been an Espada, they all had some sort of Animal Motif (or in Barragan's case, something that once was an animal, but it's the same principal). The only exception is Luppi, who's motif is vines... Perhaps being the odd one out was foreshadowing to the fact that he wouldn't last long, huh? the
Luis Barragán was the name of a Mexican Architect. Barragan Luisenbarn was the "King" (actually just a petty warlord/strongman) of Hueco Mundo, with his palace located in Las Noches. Which, of course, had no walls or roof at the time Aizen first showed up. OK there, Kubo. Good job with the Ironic Name.
Ever wonder why Aizen made Starrk the Primera Espada? While it was obvious that he was extremely strong there is w also another reason. Starrk's aspect of death was "loneliness", and Aizen, being a person who understood solitude, would have made Starrk the number one in his ranks due to their similarities.
Fake Karakura Town Arc
A similarly interesting moment comes when Tousen is taken by surprise and stabbed in the head by Hisagi. Hisagi and Komamura had set out to open Tousen's eyes, and it just so happens that Tousen using his Resurrecion enables him to see. Tousen, the first person to accept Komamura despite his appearance, denounces him as ugly, and relying on his sight instead of the other senses that helped him become a Handicapped Badass, doesn't notice Hisagi leaping onto his head, and Hisagi comments that he should have been able to avoid it if he were blind. In a tragically ironic sense, Komamura and Hisagi succeeded in opening Tousen's eyes, but in so doing, revealed how far he had fallen, and only managed to kill him — Rampulus.
Also, blind creatures gaining sight can lead to insanity. Guess what happens to Tousen?
For years, fans were wondering why Soul Society puts up with Ichigo. I mean, yeah, he's deciently powerful, but since all he does on a normal basis is kill Hollows, how does that justify them forgiving him for running into Hueco Mundo and playing right into Aizen's hands? Turns out, he's the only captain level shinigami who's never seen Aizen release his Zanpaktou, and therefore the only one who's immune to his illusions. Presumably, everyone else with a bankai (Gotei 13 captains, some of the Vaizard, Urahara, Tessai, Isshin) have all seen his shikai and are therefore suseptable to his tricks. Ichigo is literally the only one who can defeat him at this point.
In chapter 392, many people, including I, has wondered why Ichigo didn't start yelling at the captains until after they had torn apart Momo. And then the personal epiphany: He was yelling from the beginning, but since Aizen controls the five senses, and it takes the sense of hearing to hear Ichigo's warning, well...
Another long running head scratcher was why Aizen even bothered to retreat after the reveal in the first place - given his game breaker power why didn't he just finish it then? It only got more confusing as he causally discards the espada who were supposed to be the reason he was spending time building up in Las Noches in the first place. Then finally he owns up in chapter 393 that Yamamoto actually could kick his ass due to the sheer power of his Zanpakutou - and his counter? Wonderweiss - the hollow that he is seen completing right before he kicks off events leading to the current attack - the entire wait was just to complete this counter - everything else was just a distraction.
Speaking of which, the reason Aizen fears Yamamoto's Zanpakuto? Flames cannot be hypnotized, so his Shikai would have no effect.
The Deicide chapters reveal that Aizen's actions were also supposed to awaken the Hogyoku to his will and allow him to achieve godhood. The battle in Karakura town was so that he would fight captain level opponents with the Hogyoku implanted in him; without it, the lucky hit Ichigo landed on him after Yamamoto's 96 kido attack would have seriously wounded him.
And now, everything seems to be falling into place. Aizen has revealed that he had planned every one of Ichigo's fights. I'm probably overanalyzing this, but it makes sense. Why send a captain and Lieutenant to the human realm? So Ichigo can fight Renji. Why let them run amok in SS? So that he'll face a captain who will probably bring him to the verge of death: in this case, Zaraki. Why not, after he's stirred things up, just kill Ichigo, who is a distraction at best? So Ichigo can fight Byakuya. Why keep Grimmjow alive? So that Ichigo will fight him again. Why leave, Uliquorra, of all people, behind? So that uber-hollow will awaken.
In a bit of a tie-in with the above troper's entry, I never really thought much about Aizen's comments to Ichigo during the Soul Society arc; that is, until the most recent chapters when Aizen said "I've known about you since you were born." I reread the Soul Society scene just recently and realized: as he goes through the Negacion, Aizen says to Ichigo, "You were interesting... for a human." The only way Aizen could have known that Ichigo was half-human is if he had known about Ichigo since his birth.
And it seems that Aizen's got to be omniscient to see it all coming, but at least it makes some sense of the situation.
'Everything But The Rain' reveals how he knows so much; him siccing White on Isshin leads to Masaki taking the blow, her blowing it's head off with her Quincy powers, but being infected with Hollow essence at the same time, leading Isshin losing his powers to keep it under control for as long as Masaki's alive, and eventually to Ichigo's Fullbringer abilities and explains why White and Hichigo look so alike.
Here's one- in both his fight against Ichigo and Komamura/Tosen, Kenpachi Zaraki has grabbed the blade or arm of his opponent- and then against Nnoitra, the first opponent where he's in danger of dying, it won't help him, because Nnoitra has six arms.
Halibel. Her Aspect of Death is "sacrifice". The manga never gets into this, so it seems like a bit of an Ass Pull, right? Yeah, that's what I thought until the anime got more in depth about it. While everyone's commended Halibel on how close and friendly she is with her Fraccion, and how much she hurts after their deaths (especially in comparison to the Espada who are indifferent to or outright abuse their Fraccion), they didn't realize that she's actually the CRUELEST of them all. Halibel's element of sacrifice isn't referring to herself—it's referring to them. Unlike the other Fraccion, Halibel has specifically trained her Fraccion to kill themselves in order to help her cause. They're essentially suicide-bombers, which explains why they do the most damage of any other Fraccion in the series. And the reason Halibel lets herself get close to them is so that when they die, she can kick their killers' ass that much harder.
Also rather minor: This troper found the Kyoraku vs. Starrk battle to be rather anti-climatic. (Kyoraku stabs/slashes Starrk in the hollow hole, killing him.) Because, really with all the damage Bleach characters take, that's going to be what kills the Primera Espada? However, I read through some of the earlier chapters and realized that Kyoraku stabbed Starrk in the same spot where Byakuya stabbed Ichigo, causing Ichigo to lose his Shinigami powers the first time!
Aside from the fact this troper found Kyoraku's efficient last attack to be more satisfying than an over-blown 'final battle super power...thing', she has limited knowledge of Bleach canon and so wonders whether Starrk dying in the specific manner mentioned above suggests he may not be dead, merely depowered.
Regardless of location, rules are rules—since Kyoraku's body was almost completely covered in black, the attack would've dealt huge damage to ANY black spot due to the rules of the game instated by his Shikai, overriding the damage that normally would've been sustained from the wound, most likely increasing it in this case. Stabbing Starrk in a vital spot probably just sealed the deal.
And THIS Troper questions how stabbing Starrk in the Hollow hole would have any effect at all, since it's, y'know, a hole. Remember when Zaraki stabbed Nnoitra through the eyepatch and - surprise! - that's where his Hollow hole is? Same thing.
(previous troper) Eh, right, it doesn't work. However, IIRC Nnoitra's hole was just that - you could see through it - whereas Starrk's is just black and Kyoraku appears to stab straight through it. Given the colour's there, perhaps for the purposes of the game the lack of a physical target doesn't matter. Flimsy, I know, but the premise of the crazy-ass shikai does make a 'any colour counts' rule seem appropriate in its lack of sense.
Objection, the hole itself may not have a color but the sides of hollow holes have been shown as black when we look at them from an angle.
Also, since color is just a matter of reflected light, it may just be the appearance that matters. This isn't cannon, but there's a fan fiction where Kyoraku uses Irooni on Tosen's bankai and shatters it, and it seems like a plausible idea.
His shikai just became a lot more broken if that's the case. Irooni Black at nighttime would be a 1-hit KO if its rules count non-illuminated voids as black.
Actually, long after suggesting that I've recently re-watched the episode where Starrk dies and it appears that while the colour called is 'black' and the shot focusses in on Starrk's Hollow hole, the actual hit is diagonally across his chest, not just in/over the hole. The 'black' referred less to any colour on Starrk and merely the power-up Kyoraku gained from calling it when he was wearing only his black clothing (the slow loss of his 'colourful' image being another minor well-done bit) since in Irooni the damage caused is related to the risk to the 'attacker' meaning what he is wearing most of.
All that aside, with that fight I realized a bit of Kyoraku's fridge brilliance—he's the only captain in unconventional garb, and it's not just an interesting fashion statement like I had thought previously. Think of it—his outermost layer is 90% pink? How many opponents have we seen in this whole series who are wearing pink? His second layer of clothing is the standard captain's white. Now, how many hollows/arrancar have white as a primary color? Then underneath that, black. Again, almost all enemies in the series are wearing either black or white clothing, and almost none wear pink. So the tactical reason Kyoraku wears pink is for an almost impenetrable defense when he needs, using Irooni. It works both ways of course, but Kyoraku can also change the game whenever he wants. So, pink for a tactical defense, switch to shadow game or height game whenever he's ready, then back to Irooni so the opponent can barely scratch him. Then, if he does need to go on total offense with Irooni, he can easily switch to white or black as needed, and plow through 90% of the enemies out there. It's genius.
That method of tactical fighting assumes Kyoraku has the ability to change what game is played at will. He outright states that is not the case, and that the game played depends on the mood of his Zanpakuto.
A minor one regarding Starrk and Lilynette. Their "Aspect of Death" was Loneliness. At first glance it seems like this is just a reference to their being so powerful that ordinary hollows, and possibly even lower menos grande, are destroyed by their presence. It's actually deeper than that. Their resureccion is Los Lobos (Wolf Pack). Wolves are social creatures. Mix in that they had human intelligence and traits as well and Loneliness becomes a Fate Worse than Death.
As grating as Mayuri's Karma Houdini is, it makes some sense with the reveal of Tosen's motives. Tosen's reason for wanting to destroy Soul Society involved an officer who killed a fellow Shinigami in an argument, then killed Tosen's friend (who was either in the academy or a full Shinigmai at the time of her death) when she complained about it, and didn't receive any punishment. Seems like getting away with killing subordinates is something that isn't just limited to Mayuri.
For some, the Arrancar saga might seem convoluted and unnecessary, not to mention the fact that Inoue, who was hyped up by fans to be super-important to the story, ended up serving only as bait so Aizen could lure Ichigo and Captains of Soul Society to Hueco Mundo. This seemingly leads to plot points that were "foreshadowed" to be tossed away in favour of the story line that the arc ended on. But perhaps that is the point: everything else was an "illusion". Fitting with the motif of Kyoka Suigetsu, that makes people see what Aizen wants them to see, the Arrancar saga was constructed in a way that Aizen's true goals were masked behind deception and illusions regarding other characters and objects. As the arc progressed, the illusions (the importance of the Espada and Inoue's importance in the story) were stripped away until we were left with the undeniable truth.
Charlotte Cuuhlhourne and Yumichika call each other ugly yet don't realize that the words "Ugly" and "Hidious" means "Scary" and "Hide" in their original definition. If we go by the original definition Yumichika is not only the most "Beautiful" of the two yet also the most "Ugly" and "Hidious"...
People have been ripping on the Deicide arc for the longest time due to the misspelling of its name. The correct spelling is Decide, right. Wrong. The word is not the misspelling of a word that means "to make a decision", deicide means "the murder of a deity." And in this arc, Gin does exactly that. He kills Aizen... or at least he tries to. But the point still stands.
On that topic, Gin's Bankai, Kamishimi no Yari, means "God-Slaying Spear". Guess what it's used for?
Urahara on the other hand succeeds where Gin failed in the latest chapter, committing Deicide in the only way possible, by using Kidou to seal Aizen up, commenting that while fused with the Hougyoku, Aizen would be unkillable.
Also, why use 'deicide' as a name? After all, Aizen might be ridiculously powerful, but he's not God. Firstly, remember that at the end of the Soul Society arc, he proclaimed he'd "stand atop the heavens"? Uh... he more or less managed that. Secondly, it's generally accepted among theologians and some philosophers that a 'true' god cannot die (basically, that deicide is impossible). Aizen is defeated, but not killed. A case of God Is Evil?
The "Deicide" chapter title could actually be seen as a double entente:
Gin's attempt to kill the "god" Aizen
Aizen's attempt to kill the "god" The Soul King
On the other side of things, "Deicide" could refer to Zangetsu and Ichigo's Shinigami powers. At least twice in the past, chapters having to do with Ichigo's Inner World, Zangetsu and Shirosaki have had the word "god" in them. What happens to Ichigo's powers in "Deicide"? They "die" when he uses Mugetsu.
I always wondered what took Gin so long to attempt to kill Aizen since he would've succeeded if he had just done it earlier. I realized that Gin couldn't have done it earlier even if he wanted to. That moment was the only time Gin knew it was definitely Aizen. In Soul Society and Hueco Mondo, there were plenty of arrancar and shinigami around to be decoys for Aizen. For all we know, Aizen could've been chilling in a secret room the entire time while hypno-generated Aizen interacted with shinigami/arrancar. Hinamori in Fake Karakura was Tite Kubo's example of why Gin didn't try to kill Aizen. When they entered the real Karakura town, it was the only time when he knew the real Aizen must be there and the two were alone. The reason Gin carried Rangiku away was not only to protect her from Aizen but to make sure she doesn't become his decoy.
A bit of Fridge Brilliance from reading chapter 461. It explained why Rukia's actions in the beginning were illegal! Why would transferring one's powers to a human be illegal unless it had done before? Laws are rarely made preemptively. To me, it made the whole series make more sense.
Fridge brilliance is an accidental interpretation but Kubo's set this information up for a long time so it's not really fridge brilliance, it's more a case of tying up loose ends or at least answering questions some fans have had for a very long time: In Chapter 1 Rukia knew this method of transferring power to a human existed, so it was obvious even then that there had to be a history of it happening. The fact it was against the law simply reinforced that notion. Then there was Ukitake at the end of the Soul Society arc when he gave the substitute badge to Ichigo, telling him it was given to any substitute that proved useful to Soul Society and the badge was invisible to humans because it was dangerous in the wrong human's hands. That immediately told us that Ichigo wasn't their first substitute and it even inferred that they must have had substitutes that didn't prove useful as well as proving useful. Then there's the idea of actually knowing that a substitute's badge is a problem if it falls into the wrong hands, suggesting that it's happened in the past for them to know about it. Yes, Kubo's given a lot of information for fans to ask questions about for a very long time. It's nice to see him addressing it at last.
Remember waaaayy back when Ichigo first received the Substitute Shinigami badge, and he was told it was only given to those who benefit Soul Society? But when he tried to use it to show he is a Substitute, the guy brushes him off? At first we thought it was because said Shinigami was an idiot. Then it was never brought up again, till this arc. Then we learn what it really is: it's for those who benefit or are a problem to Soul Society and can spy on them, ''supress their reiastsu'', and otherwise make sure they are not a threat to them. This explains how Soul Society knew where he was in the human world, as well as why he needed to be in spirit form to use his Shinigami powers after SS arc, or why he wasn't leaking reiatsu and making more spiritually awakened people.
It also explains why they were so quick to trust a guy that had just committed breaking and entering on a military facility and assaulted high-ranking officers based on his own personal ideology. It might have been correct at the time, but its still not a terribly trust-building thing to do.
As of chapter 479, there's been some changes in Soul Society after Ichigo's 17 months out of action. Namely, things like Kenpachi and Soi Fon changing to their 'old' hairstyles and some of the Vaizards getting back their captain positions. And then the realization: after Aizen's incarceration, everything is reverting back to normality, as in before the Turn Back The Pendulum arc and before Aizen began plotting.
Which only means it's the calm before the storm...
There is also the caption at the end of Deicide 18 [The End], which says "Time Stops...!/Enough to stop time...!" With the revert to normality before the Turn Back the Pendulum arc, Aizen's time has stopped.
From their dialogue and mannerisms, as well as being the two captains to interact the most with Ichigo, its obvious that Kubo likes to draw parallels between Kenpachi(Street thug, Axe Crazy, etc.) and Byakuya (Refined, upper class, and educated). After seeing Byakuya fight Tsukishima, another comparison was realized. Kenpachi likes to swing away wildly and fight like a madman with no strategy. However this doesn't work against Nnoitra. So what does he do? He uses a technique that one would expect from Byakuya! This arc, Byakuya finds that smooth control isn't working, so what does he do? He abandons all technique and metaphorically "swings" madly like Kenpachi! Now if only we can get an all out fight between the two...
During the Zanpaktou rebellion arc, Zangetsu is the only one to not take advantage of his newfound power to walk around freely even after Ichigo defeats him and frees him of Muramasa's influence. Now we know that he's actually a manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy blood and also identical to Yhwach as he was 1000 years ago. When he fought Ichigo, nobody else was around. It's only natural that he wouldn't want to be around veteran Shinigami. He might have been recognized.
Another piece of (unintentional?) Fridge Brilliance kicks in during the opening used in this arc, Anima Rossa; where we see a scene of Ichigo and his Hollow fight side to side, immediately followed by the humanized Zanpaktou Spirits. With the recent reveal that Hollow Ichigo is actually Zangetsu, this makes you wonder if the writers were in the know about Zangetsu's true identity.
1000 Year Blood War Arc
The reason why Ikkaku was never forced to become captain along with Renji right after Aizen's betrayal is because Yama's lieutenant is exactly the same as them. Yama's lieutenant, Sasakibe actually knows Bankai, but never took a captain's position because he strictly kept his loyalty to Yama and no one else. Yama is no idiot. He would've known Ikkaku had Bankai, but because he was strictly loyal to Kenpachi, he respected his wish because he has a lieutenant who is exactly the same.
There is also the distinct possibility that Madarame simply isn't Captain material. Think about it: he is the epitome of a Glass Cannon. He is constantly breaking his extremely frail Shikai on things, he has next to zero defensive ability, no discernible Kido skills, and has no tricks up his sleeve or tactical advantages aside from his Shikai special ability to turn from a spear into a bladed nunchuk thing. As if that wasn't bad enough, he isn't particularly speedy and rarely uses Shunpo. His Bankai is slow and weak at first, and has to "awaken" before it becomes powerful. Even after it awakens, the boost is only in attack power. It's still bulky and slow. On top of everything else, his Bankai was broken and is now a shadow of its former self. Being forcibly appointed Captain is the last of his concerns. Having Bankai is not a straight ticket to Captainhood; you still have to qualify in other areas.
Madarame has always misused his power. A portion of the fanbase always interpreted that to mean his abuse of his power was why his zanpakutou seemed so fragile and that theory's all but confirmed with Ouetsu telling Renji and Ichigo their zanpakutou broke so easily due to a lack of love. In-universe, he's hugely respected by captains and lieutenants alike and him losing a fight is grounds for even captains reacting in shock. While he claims to be a no-tricks fighter, he's full of tricks: switching hands mid-strike, a shikai that pretends to be something its not before transforming into something that can attack unpredictably from any direction. It's been stated on more than one occasion that he deliberately sacrifices skill in battle just to have fun and rely on luck instead of ability. He may not be ready for captainhood yet, but the talent's clearly there and the manga has been associating him with captains more and more as the story has progressed. His mentality is the problem, not his potential.
Saying that his mentality is all that's keeping him from Captainhood is a real stretch. Just to review the "highlights" of his performance thus far; he has got his butt handed to him by Ichigo pre-getsuga, had his Bankai all but rendered inoperable by a Fraccíon, is shown to be on more-or-less equal grounds sparring with Iba, a Liutenant, he got creamed by Barragan's toady, and his fight with a Fullbringer nearly ended in disaster. His Zanpakuto is Made of Plasticine. He is simply not in the same league as the likes of Unohana, Kyoraku, Byakuya et. all. Not currently or in the foreseeable future, at any rate.
If you interpret "talent" or "potential" to mean "can become one right now if he changes his mind" I suppose that would be the reaction. However, that's not the case and the manga showed Ikkaku wasn't captain level right now when the comparison between him and Komamura was made. Talent and potential means if he wanted to work at it, he could become one in the future. Fraccion power levels shouldn't be dismissed. Urahara had estimated a power level for the Espada but Yoruichi pointed out he had guessed wrong. Both the Espada and Fraccions exceeded the expectation. Edorad realised Ikkaku was deliberately sacrificing his skill to fight solely on luck and that happened again in the Shishi fight (who was stated by Ginjou to be far too dangerous to be allowed to have the special power up that was given to the other fullbringers, the only person aside from Ginjou and Tsukishima to not receive one). The Poww battle required bankai, which is why a captain took over the fight. The databooks state Ikkaku wouldn't have struggled with Luppi's tentacles if he'd used bankai. The manga has shown the potential is there for him to make it to captain one day if he wanted to. The thing is, he doesn't want to. That's why mentality is the issue.
Byakuya, Komamura, Soi Fon, and Toshiro decide to use their bankais against the Stern Ritters, only to get them stolen. At first this seems like a stupid thing to do, until you remember that the Soul Society actually thought the Quincy could -seal- Bankai, not steal it. They deliberately used Bankai to allow their opponents to "seal" them, so that they could immediately get to work on finding a way to unseal them and counter the ability for future confrontations. It backfired only because it turned out the Bankai wasn't just sealed, but directly stolen from it's wielder's soul and thus there was no "seal" to analyze.
This overlaps with WMG. When Uryuu loses his powers, Ryuuken makes him swear to never associate with the Shinigami again. At first it seems as though he simply wants to give his son a normal life. Flash forward to this arc, and Quincies arrive and start dropping the Shinigmai like flies. Then Kirge Opie mentions to Ichigo that he at least knows of Uryuu. At this point, I realized that essentially, Ryuuken must've somehow known that the Quincy were gearing up for an assault. Telling Uryuu to disassociate with Shinigami was an attempt to protect him from being viewed as and potentially killed as an enemy by the Vandenreich!
It also hints that by lying and saying that he's the last Quincy, he's at least trying to prevent Uryuu from trying find out information that may have led him to the Vandenreich and them recruiting him!
Lastly, it may have explained why Ryuuken never appeared to contribute in the Fake Karakura town arc to help against Aizen. Given how easily Quincies can track Shinigami, he must've known that his involvement would've led the Vandenreich right to his family!
Remember, Souken also represented himself as "the last Quincy", so he was complicit with Ryuuken in keeping this from Uryuu. Souken may have likewise concealed Ryuuken from the Vandenreich until he was old enough to make his own choices and decided to disavow the Clan entirely. - Thenakedcat
In 497, it is revealed not only the bankai is stolen but the zanpakuto itself is stolen. It seems eerie, but the big point about bankai is that you bring your zanpakuto itself into the external world and give it a shape. No their focus isn't on their bankai, but the spirits of the zanpakuto within.
So, the whole idea of the Vandenreich being able to steal Bankai and use it against the Shinigami seems like an Ass Pull, right? But when you think about it, it's actually a logical extension of their powers! Unlike Shinigami and Hollows, its established that Quincies fight by using the surrounding spirit particles as their weapon, as opposed to relying on their own powers. Taking someone else's powers and using it against them is basically the same concept, but on a grander scale!
chapter 502 rolls around and reveals Kenpachi apparently have not only easily dealt with his Vandenreich foes seems to be like a happy note for the end of a jarring chapter but then again keep in mind that most of the Stern Ritters were toying with their prey by stealing their bankais but keep in mind that kenpachi never obtained bankai and is still a captain the 3 Stern Ritters that faced him probably tried to use that bankai stealing thing and just wound up wasting their time and allowing kenpachi the time he needed to kill them.
Also, look at the bankais that they've stolen. Out of the four that were stolen, Komamura's and Soifon's have the biggest chance of backfiring on them due to their weakness! Komamura's reflects its injuries on the user, and Soifons is useless at close range.
Them stealing those two bankai isn't actually a weakness. In fact it was a mistake on the Soul Society's part to allow the Vandenreich to get those bankai. Why? They cause the most collateral damage, and when your mission is destroy everything in sight and commit mass slaughter, having an ICBM and a massive warrior that destroys everything around it is more useful than say, a bankai like Ichigo's old one. Which makes it lucky for the Soul Society that the Vandenreich will not get to use them (yet).
Chapters 507 and 508 have shown Yamamoto using his Bankai, Zanka no Tachi. Seeing what it is capable of so far, it is perfectly understandable why Aizen opted for sealing Yamamoto's Shikai with Wonderweiss, and did not dare engage Yamamoto directly in combat.
As of the latest chapter, where it turns out Ichigo's mother is a Quincy and Ichigo has Quincy powers it seems like Kubo just done another Ass Pull, right? But when you think about it, it actually makes sense. Ichigo's Bankai has always been considered unusual in that it compressed his powers around him rather than expand them outwards, but what makes Quincies so different to Shinigami? Rather than release their own power, they draw in power from around them! What made Ichigo unique was actually pretty clever Foreshadowing.
Related to the above, the revelation that Ichigo has Quincy ancestry through Masaki begins to explain an enduring question about Isshin and Ryuuken's (and probably Kisuke's) shared past: why Isshin and Kisuke have respected Ryuuken's willful rejection of the spirit world when they obviously could have used his help during Aizen's invasion of Karakura—and to a lesser extent during the Fullbringer incident. By guarding the Quincy Clan's secrets from Ichigo and Uryuu, Ryuuken is covering for Isshin as much as Isshin is covering for him.
More on the revelation of Masaki being a Quincy and Ichigo having Quincy powers. Very early on in the series, Zangetsu explained to Ichigo that, while Ichigo did lose the Shinigami powers Rukia gave him, he still had his own dormant Shinigami powers that Rukia's reiatsu awakened. How did Juha Bach explain Ichigo having Quincy powers? They awakened when Quilge's reiatsu, after Ichigo exhausted his reiryoku trying to break out of "The Jail", was absorbed by Ichigo which awakened Ichigo's Quincy powers at their very roots. In other words, Kubo used the same explanation he did to explain Ichigo having Shinigami powers to explain Ichigo's Quincy powers.
Way back at the end of the Aizen fight Aizen loses his sword and claims that he bumped up another level and became one with his sword. The way the fight went it sounded like it was just him talking shit after losing. Cut to the present where the bad guy, who killed Yamamoto, happened to get hypnotized by Aizen, maybe he wasn't lying and did evolve a bit more.
Some readers have noted the resemblance between Stern Ritter As Nodt and Retsu Unohana. At first this appears to be a case of lazily reusing old character designs...but with the reveal of Unohana being the original Kenpachi, in turn implying she was one of the vicious original Gotei 13 members, it could have been foreshadowing, which becomes even more interesting knowing Nodt's brutal Curb-Stomp Battle against Byakuya that nearly cost the latter his life.
As of Chapter 540 it's revealed who "Zangetsu" really is. However it's to be noted that the name Zangetsu itself is a foreshadow on who Ichigo's real zanpakutou actually is. "Slaying Moon" or in other terms "The Moon that Slays". The moon is white, the blade that Ichigo always uses? Black. Not the "moon" at all, but the blade that Hollow Ichigo has always used? It's white, another indication that when he claimed to be the real Zangetsu and the sword Ichigo was using was fake was actually true from the beginning.
The Everything but the Rain arc makes this obvious, but Aizen's involvement in Ichigo's life makes a lot more sense. Of course he would know about Ichigo since his birth. He was the reason Ichigo was even born in the first place, and knew all along that Ichigo had Quincy blood. He realized that Ichigo had the potential to become the most powerful shinigami in history, just because he had the potential power from the three major species in the series. Makes you wonder why he never told Ichigo about it, if only just to screw around with him.
My God... Kubo was foreshadowing it in the most subtle way possible. You just blew my mind.
A common complaint amongst fans has long been that Ichigo's training seems to bring greater results than others get from theirs, the most common argument being that the Shinigami have trained for over a hundred years at the least, and Ichigo only half a year. This makes perfect sense after the revelation of Zangetsu's true identity. The nature of Ichigo's power was, from the very beginning, closer to an Arrancar's than a Shinigami's. Shinigami bond and develop their zanpakuto, and grow along with it, achieving more and more power as they grow. Arrancar seal off their full power, and simply release more and more of it rather than grow with it, the exact opposite of what Shinigami do, in precisely the same way that Zangetsu has always sealed off Ichigo's true reiatsu, and only given him as much as he needed at any given time. He's exactly like an Arrancar who's control over their power was governed by a split personality!
So in this arc, we learn that Juha Bach has taken a special interest in Uryu because of the fact that he's a Gemischt Quincy, or Half-Blood Quincy who survived his Selektion where all of the Gemischt Quincy were supposedly killed, aside from Uryu. You know who else we found out is Gemischt Quincy, who also evidently survived the Selektion process? Ichigo.
In 519, Kirinji mentions something about "rotten blood" getting sucked out and replaced by new blood to Ichigo. In 565, we learn that Ywach can transfer pieces his soul through blood and used the Sternritter to infect the Shinigami.
Zanpakuto and Bankai
I first thought Zangetsu (Slaying Moon) was named that just because it sounded cool then I realized what the name meant when Byakuya told Renji about the monkey and the moon. When Byakuya told that it was impossible to capture to moon, then I realize that not only can Zangetsu capture the moon, but he can also slay it. The name means it Zangetsu can do the impossible which fits into how Ichigo always pulls off miracles.
Not to mention, after his second fight (and defeat) with Ichigo, Renji (who's zanpakto's a baboon) realized he had to stop aiming for the moon (i.e. thinking that killing Ichigo will solve Rukia's predicament).
We know that the zanpakuto are created from the soul of the Shinigami, their features reflecting the owner's desires, character and way of thinking. This troper believes it is possible that Zangetsu is a zanpakuto created for the sole purpose of defeating Byakuya. He was given form only after Ichigo's encounter with cpt. Kuchiki, when the hero was training in order to be able save Rukia. Ichigo must have known at the time that he'll have to defeat Byakuya sooner or later and his Zanpakuto reflected that in it's entirety.
Too minor to be truly 'brilliant', but this troper found Ukitake's shikai - though all too-convenient for the circumstances, thanks author - rather neat. He can't really rely on his own strength, so he turns others' against them. Although the manipulation of power and speed Starrk calls 'malicious' could be cause for concern.
It's been somerhing of a running gag that Hanataro is oddly popular with women. Well, guys with big swords are compensating for something, right? Hanataro's shikai is TINY. Perhaps he is compensating for the opposite? On the other end of the spectrum, Gin's bankai extends 200 feet. Doesn't seem to effect his popularity with female fans, though....
Well Gin's Shinso isn't that big either, sure it can extend but its normal size is not much bigger than a knife
There is a correlation between a Shinigami's physical appearance, their Reiatsu, and their Zanpakuto. This would explain the outlandish haircolors that many characters have, among other things. -Rock Lee Your Face
For starters, Ichigo. His hair is orange (color of the Sun) and his Zanpakuto is Zangetsu (Slaying Moon).
Then there's Toshiro. His hair is white and his Zanpakuto is an Ice type. His Reiatsu is white and was said to feel "cold".
Renji has red hair (and red Reiatsu), and Zabimaru's Bankai form resembles a snake with a red mane.
And though we haven't actually seen her use her Zanpakuto, Yachiru fits this as well, to an extant. Her hair is pink, the color of her Reiatsu.
Though certainly questionable, Izuru Kira might fit this. He has one angular bang that hangs over his eye, and his Zanpakuto's released form looks like a normal Zanpakuto except that the blade is in the shape of three right-angles.
Ikkaku's shaven head is reminiscent of buddhist monks. His bankai is a combination guan-dao and chinese monk-shovel, weapons strongly associated with chinese fighting monks.
Yumichika's feathers (multi-coloured in the manga, solid red and solid yellow in the anime) are an obvious link to his peacock-themed zanpakutou. However, while his eye colour is the same wisteria-purple shade that's reminiscent of his zanpakutou's fake name Fuji Kujaku, his zanpakutou's real name is Ruri'iro Kujaku, Azure Peacock. In Feng Shuai and Japanese colour schemes, the natural and spiritual colour complement for azure is orange. That is exactly the colour Yumichika's been using to accessorise his uniform.
I've never really payed much attention to his eye color, but damn, that's pretty interesting now that I think about it. A Zanpakuto is made from your soul, and reflects who you are as a person. Yumichika's eyes are wisteria-purple, the color that Ruri'iro Kujaku absolutely can't stand. Does that mean that Yumichika isn't as proud of his appearance as he says he is?
Yes, it does raise the question of whether or not he hates his eyes. His volume poem also reveals that he doesn't think people are capable of being beautiful, and only flowers can be. It seems that Yumichika's very much not what everyone thinks he is.
I just realized that Ruri'iro Kujaku's hilt is also purple. And in a hillarious scene in the anime, Yumichika is hitting a rock with his Zanpakuto because Ruri'iro kujaku won't cooperate with him. Perhaps Ruri'iro is ticked off that Yumichika is wearing a purple shirt.
I think that has more to do with the name-calling. Remember that Yumichika only ever uses the name Fuji Kukaju to make his zanpakutou refuse to cooperate with him? And remember that he'd rather die than reveal his sword's abilities in front of Ikkaku? Now look at that training scene again. Ikkaku is present and Yumichika is using the name Fuji Kujaku. Whether or not Yumichika was genuinely angry with his sword in that scene, he had deliberately provoked it.
That's an interesting way to look at it. I didn't give the scene serious thought, due to it's seemingly played for laughs nature. It's very possible that wearing the wisteria-purple shirt, using the name Fuji Kujaku, and hitting Ruri'iro Kujaku against the rock were all done to keep Ruri'iro from using his actual shikai ability.
I don't know if this is significant or not, but Four Is Death and so is purple (in Japan, at least). Purple happens to be the color of squad 11. Yumichika is supposed to be fourth seat, but says the kanji for four is ugly. Maybe I'm overthinking this, but I can't help but wonder if there is some kind of meaning here. I don't think it's a coincidence that Ruri'iro Kujaku's hated color happens to be the color of the squad that Yumichika is in.
In another case of possible overthinking, purple is also a colour "beautiful boys" used to wear to advertise their role involved with other men. It's recorded that not all "beautiful boys" liked this role and were only doing it because they had to. The reluctant "boys" had to hide their dislike of their situation and were eager to discard the purple. Once able to, they could now engage in their own preferences (for many, this meant having heterosexual relationships and getting married).
Soifon is very small and short, and her hair is reminiscent of a butterlies antenna. She also wears black with a yellow sash around her waist, giving her a hornet-like appearance. Her Zanpakuto is Suzumebachi (Hornet). It's Shikai looks like a giant stinger ◊, and it leaves a butterfly shaped mark on those it stings.
May I nominate Ichigo's bankai? The first time it was used he managed to (marginally) beat Byakuya, a man who has had his bankai for what one can assume is centuries. When you sit down and think about the abilities of most bankai, Ichigo's bankai seem pretty basic right?... That's the point! Ichigo's bankai is covering his lack of experience by giving him a bankai that's easy to use. He's more a brawler and good at close combat, so wouldn't increased speed and strength from a easy-to-use bankai help with his fighting style? - Average NOOB
Captains normally need 10 years training with their bankai after gaining it meaning that they have to center their fighting style on their bankai. Ichigo's bankai, however , fits around his fighting style rather than forcing him to change it when he uses his bankai.
It goes even further - excepting when he fires off Getsuga Tenshou, he keeps his power quite focused and "around him" most of the time, "cloaking" himself in it just like Chad noted. When we compare the style of his bankai to the captains, it becomes obvious pretty quickly that the majority of them are the opposite. Big, flashy effects that get just tossed all over the place, with their weapons/effects of said weapons sometimes becoming these big, vulnerable, flailing behemoths (Hitsugaya and Komamura being the two biggest offenders in this case.) This might even be why some of the Fullbring arc fights the Captains were involved in so recently ended up playing out like they did - they're starting to see how effective his style is, and are trying it his way now. Doing things quickly and efficiently instead of throwing power all over the place might end up being the new norm.
Thanks for making me realize that above troper. Another plus for Ichigo is that he stays in his bankai longer then should he be, making me question why at first. Sure he has a crap ton of reiatsu but so do most captains. This makes me think that EVERY bankai(bar Ichigo's) sacrifices most of their reiatsu to enter bankai. Ichigo's just takes a little reiatsu to activate and leaks off little leading to why he just sits in it even an hour after a fight with no minus whatsoever. So with the fight with Byakuya he didn't just overwhelm him but also wear him down by just showcasing his speed. Hell, the longest time we have seen him hold it is from when he fought (in order) Ulquiorra, lost, came back, killed Ulquiorra, healed injuries, saved Rukia, fired a Gestuga at Yammy, walked through the Garganta with Unohana for what can be assumed to be an hour BEFORE she offers to heal his reiatsu. And through all that he ended up at 40-50%. In terms of time that's round about 2-3 hours. Just wow. - Averge NOOB
May I add that all of this might be the reason why the Vandenreich can't do anything to his bankai. The other bankai are expansive types, while Ichigo's cloaks him. So they can't steal it because they can't get a grip on it!
Also, it's possible that they can't steal the bankai of the Visoreds. Yamamoto's bankai, Zanka no Tachi, concentrated his flames into his sword and Juha Bach stole it anyway, but none of the visoreds have lost their bankai yet.
Real fridge Brilliance actually kicks in when you realized that Ichigo's zanpakutou is the only one that is not formed from an Asauchi. This helps explain why Ichigo's power is opposite of a typical bankai - and the reason why his bankai cannot be stolen, as it is based on a different mechanism.
Once you rethink the entire 1000-year Blood war arc do you realize why Ichigo's Bankai can never be stolen: 1) His "zagetsu" is actually his quincy power, and seeing that even Yuhabach cannot take it during his his purge, the lesser quincies cannot touch it either. 2) His real zanpakutou is permanently infused with Hollow power, which as demonstrated by Urahara, allows stolen bankai to be returned to its original owner. In short, even consider his current Zangetsu set as seperate swords, their very nature means they cannot be stolen by Quincy.
It's even more brilliant when you consider Yamamoto's words about Ichigo's bankai. Yamamoto himself claims that, because Ichigo only got his bankai recently, his bankai still has plenty of room to evolve, and that's why the Vandenreich couldn't steal it. It's not just a case of the bankai fitting the owner's needs,it's also the case of Ichigo having an incomplete bankai!
Ichigo's Zangetsu is in the form of a mysterious middle-aged who is very level-headed. It perfectly reflects Ichigo because he is a very mature and wise person who, despite being a teenager, has the mentality of somehow who is an adult.
Then what does that make Tensa Zangetsu? (A slight reflection of) Ichigo's repressed emotional side due to childhood trauma?
Ichigo gets emotional when he's trying to protect someone. Tensa Zangetsu is emotional because he wants to protect Ichigo and Ichigo is doing something that goes againt that
Chapter 516 has Mayuri stating that Komamura's bankai can be easily fixed due to how they are linked, which is in turn due to how strong their bond is. Why would their bond be so exceptional, when several other Shinigami have strong bonds with their Zanpakuto? Because Komamura was always insecure about his appearance! The spirit of his sword would probably have been the only person he could talk to that accepted him unconditionally, especially before either he met Tosen, or stopped wearing his mask!
5 words that have hinted at the The Reveal for a long time. "This is not a bankai." Said as early as the first use of Ichigo's bankai.
Another piece of foreshadowing. Remember when Ichigo got his second hollow form? He was able to call Zangetsu to him by gesturing. Guess who was in charge during the fight.
I take your 5 words and raise you 10 said before them by the hollow: "Train him well. One day that power will be mine." We assumed it was foreshadowing the Battle in the Center of the Mind they had later for Ichigo's mask but...
A bit of foreshadowing from Ichigo's hollow, "I am Zangetsu!" Everyone thought it meant the hollow and Zangetsu were two halves of the same coin. In reality, he's saying he's the real Zangetsu.
A slightly more recent example: Back when Ichigo used the FGT, a lot of people were complaining that Ichigo's hollow powers should've remained regardless, since the FGT was explicitly stated to cause the loss of shinigami power. His hollow powers ARE his shinigami powers.
The Reveal that Hollow power is toxic to Quincies explains why their method of stealing Bankais didn't work on Ichigo. Ichigo's been partially Hollowfied since birth.
It also explains why They never seemed to target any of the Visoreds
The revelation in "Everything But The Rain" that Kanae and Masaki both died as a side effect of Yhwach's Selection explains a niggling question that's been around since we first found out Ryuuken had powers and knew the Kurosakis: why hadn't he killed Grand Fisher and saved Masaki? Answer: Because halfway across town his wife had just collapsed into a mysterious coma. Tad bit distracted at that point.
Loads of fans have been complaining of the heroes being invincible, and the bad guys dying off in droves. However it becomes brilliance when you realise that most of the bad guys only got swords and their new powers after the soul society arc, while the Shinigamis have been training for hundreds of years in most cases. So logically the good guys SHOULD be out-fighting them at every turn
However, that doesn't explain how Ichigo was in the exact same situation earlier (with his foes having hundreds of years worth of experience compared to his few months) with him pulling out several wins against the captains, aside from his status as the main protagonist. —Megadoomer
Aizen claims that this was because he planned it. Whether or not this makes it any better, or whether you even believe it for that matter...
This is subtly addressed in the recent manga arcs (Fullbring stories.) It makes sense when you look at the Soul Society as a whole, and then look at Ichigo. Soul Society, until recently, has been largely unchanging over hundreds of years - rather stagnant. Ichigo on the other hand, had to go through some rapid changes in a pretty short amount of time. His powers came from an urgent need. The rest of the Shinigamis developed their powers rather slowly, due to the nature of Soul Society apparently making them think they "have all the time in the world." Cut to present-day, and we find guys like Renji and Shuhei immediately going out after the Arrancar crisis ended, to train and get stronger instead of just "patiently waiting for it to happen." Renji himself admitted to having trained to try to be strong enough to take on Aizen. The whole thing was a huge wake-up call to Soul Society at how complacent they'd gotten.
Captain Retsu Unohana, an extremely powerful woman implied to be the most Badass of them all, is the leader of Squad 4, a healing squad. A fairly arbitrary number assignment, right? Well, Four Is Death, in case we needed even more hinting that she is the epitome of awesomesauce.
She's also the head of the squad that does all the healing. Surely someone with all the knowledge on how to heal someone would know how to kill them with relative ease, no?
Recent reveal show that she was actually the FIRST Kenpachi and knows 8000 ways to kill you, and she learnt healing art just so she can hurt you again. Four Is Death indeed.
When the first chapters with Hirako Shinji were revealed, my first thought was, "Hey, he looks familiar." I shrugged it off when I realized that nobody in the cast knew him. But when I went back to reread some of the earlier books in order to prepare material for a fanfiction, I noticed that familiar face in THE TITLE PAGE FOR CHAPTER ONE. Seriously. Either Kubo seriously slipped up, forgot to add one of the characters he designed for the class, and had to make up for it by throwing him into the mix later, or he is a genius who planned that entire story arc from the very beginning. Either way, it's brilliance. —Silver Shoelaces
Upon further inspection, we see a blonde girl, along with someone with spiky black hair (doesn't look like Kenpachi's) and a girl with reddish hair whose faces are obscured. More future characters? ...Actually, that one with reddish hair seems a bit like Yachiru... -Dragoryu3000
This troper guesses that it's something of an "executive/story change-induced fridge". If you look at the start of the series, it seems to be intended to take place in the real world, in a sentai-ish way. In such scenario, the whole vaizard thing is just at home with no problems, which can be taken to mean that the arc was already planned. However, for whatever reason, we got the Soul Society arc interrupting it. It's quite evident when you take into account that the starting arc established our main heroes as Ichigo, Ishida, Chad, Orihime and Rukia and then suddenly all but Ichigo vanish for pretty much the whole arc, also, you can notice a shift in the story dynamic. Come the vaizards, things more or less revert to what they once were (training sessions, more light-hearted despite all, characters dress differently again, etc).
Another bit about Shinji: the other day, I just realized that Shinji's Shikai release was already alluded to waaaay back. When introducing himself to Ichigo's class while posing as a student, Shinji wrote his name backwards on the board, and explained that he has a gift for reversing things. Then there's the more obvious walking around town upside down in midair... It might just be what he's comfortable with.
Orihime's power in regards to her characterization. Orihime is an idealist. She exists in a very violent world, yet refuses to fight unless she's under really terrible pressure. She used to see Ichigo as her Prince Charming, her Knight in Shining Armor, until she realized that is simply wasn't the case. The girl was pretty much living in her own little fantasy world to cope with her HUGE troubles, which is why yanking her out of it and making her face a reality so alien to her own left her so distraught. So what do her powers do exactly? Reject reality.
Also in regards to Orihime, the reason why Loly and Menoly hate her even more after she uses her Reality Warper powers to bring them back to life. is more' complicated than just being Ungrateful Bitches. To start, Hollows/Arrancar/Espada/etc. as a whole are beings that are born when souls don't cross to Soul Society and stay in our world, becoming corrupted with supernatural energies. And here, two Arrancar girls (Hollows who have removed their mask and gained Shinigami-like powers) have witnessed how an Extraordinarily Empowered Girl has the power to undo death, pretty much messing with everything they know about their own existence. What is a Crowning Moment of Awesome for Orihime, in the view of these two girls (and especially Loly, who had a better look at all of this than Menoly since, yanno, she was horribly mutilated by Grimmjow yet she was not dead) is like catching view of an Eldritch Abomination, which explains the whole "she's a monster" deal; while it is about Yandereism to quite a degree, it also involves one hell of a Mind Screw for Hollows/Arrancars/etc.
Hollows, beings that are born from death, despair and fear, are being faced with a being who can literally rewrite reality so that events do not occur. Taken in this context, Orihime is less like an angel of mercy to these two and more like Cthulhu from their perspective. A being whose nature and abilities are so alien that they outright defy explanation. Considering this, its understandable that they would react less than pleasantly to what happened to them. — Other tropers
Further to the above point on Orihime's character in relation to her powers - there's a very specific reason why Orihime actually used to be useless on the battle field, and it's not any kind of limit on her power. It's been heavily alluded to that Orihime's power is pretty much limited by her own imagination. Naturally, when it comes to helping people, her healing powers can reverse pretty much anything. However, think about who Orihime is. She wouldn't hurt a fly if she could help it. She can take down random hollows like that mook that was attacking Tatsuki in the school because it's monstrous in appearance, and they'll hurt more people if she doesn't attack. Place a humanoid enemy in front of her, and will take her a while to see that she should consider them an enemy, and she simply cannot attack them unless it's really needed. This is why Tsubaki's power will always be the most limited of her set.
Actually, about Tsubaki... let's analyze the Shiten Koushun aka Shield of Four Heavens' Resistance. How is it formed? Via adding Tsubaki to the Three God Reflection Shield, thus making him turn a defensive barrier into an offensive weapon. Tsubaki is the weakest of the six Rikka spirits as well as the one who's less like her, personality wise; and the ones forming the Reflection Shield (Hinagiku, Lilly and Baigon) are relatively similar to her in character. This means that, if she wants to join the battle effectively, Orihime must accept to use Tsubaki yet not by simply sending him off towards the enemy (like many of her haters want her to), but by integrating him to the side that she dominates the most. Only by using Tsubaki in combination with Hinagiku, Lily and Baigon she can draw his attack potential... mirroring how Orihime must now fight alongside Ichigo, Chad and others if she wants to not stay behind. Also, when was the Shiten Koushun seen first? When she and Ichigo were attacked by Ginjou. Who was actually a humanoid enemy (more exactly the ex-Substitute Shinigami, but we didn't know that back then and neither did she; This means that Orihime either is working on the issue mentioned above, or has already gotten past behind it.
As for her Santen Kesshun (Three God Reflection Shield)? It too, is not the fragile thing it seems to be. It is specifically stated to Reject an attack and its consequences. It stands to perfectly good reason that it doesn't matter if the shield shatters instantly or not - anther can always be thrown up. What matters is that whether the shield shatters or not, it genuinely DOES reject the attack that hits it.
The anime has the attacks Lanzador Verde (Green Lance) and Projectile Azul (Blue Projectile) colored Magenta and Yellow respectively sounds dumb at first then the brilliance: Green/Magenta and Blue/Yellow are both cases of "opposing" colors.
The opposing colors to blue and green are orange and red, respectively. This time, they just screwed up.
Orange/Blue and Green/Red are complimentary subtractive colors (colors of pigment), Green/Magenta(Violet) and Blue/Yellow are complimentary additive colors (colors of light).
Why is Mayuri's favorite hobby reading every single word of Shinigami Communications from cover to cover? Because when he was locked up in isolation in the Maggot's Nest, that was the only thing he had to do with his time!
Kyoraku's... striking choice of clothing isn't just "stylish", it corresponds to his Zanpakuto's colour game. The potential for an opponent landing a hit for Massive Damage is greatly reduced by Shunsui wearing so many colours at once on top of his black and white uniform. The whole business of "games" revolving around killing your opponent also sums up his behaviour rather nicely as Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass, as it's not clear he's pretending as per Obfuscating Stupidity.
When you look at Neliel, it appears that her hollow hole is missing or hidden. If you remember, Hollows gain there holes when they lose their hearts. When you think about it, this explains her personality and actions. Because she's the only Arrancar/Espada that hasn't lost her heart.
But if she hadn't lost her heart then she wouldn't have become a Hollow in the first place. It is possible she "regained" her heart, though. The same could be said for the hole-less Harribel.
Except that, according to the most recent manuals, Harribel's Hollow Hole is located in her womb, covered by her skirt. So, no, she's not hole-less.
Another thing about Neliel is that she is the former Trecera Espada, and the current one represents the aspect of death that is Sacrifice. As stated above, Harribel grows stronger and more ruthless with the sacrifice of her comrades. When did Nel regain her true form (albeit temporarily), as well as impulsively get into a fight with Nnoitra that ended with her seriously injured and in her Sleep Mode Size? When she saw her friends seriously injured, possibly fighting for HER SAKE. Not entirely in the case of Ichigo vs. Nnoitra (Orihime was being held captive by Tesra), but Nel was also in danger. Not So Different, maybe?
When I found out that Ggio Vega's seiyuu could speak Spanish, I wondered why it he didn't pronounce the Spanish words right. Then it hit me: just because the voice actor can speak the language, doesn't mean the character can. It's possible that all Hollows and Arrancar are originally Japanese souls who gained foreign names upon Hollowfying. Remember Grand Fisher? Bulbous G? Numb Chandelier? Orihime's brother Sora who became "Acidwire"? Although these could be code names given to them by Soul Society (they seem to be more descriptive than they seem to be actual names), I doubt so many people would be able to speak Japanese if their names were indicative of where they originated: Yammy Llargo, Dordonii Alessandro del Socaccio, Gantenbainne Mosqueda, Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez, Zommari Rureaux, Szayelaporro Grantz, Coyote Starrk...
There are such things as accents, you know ;-).
Grimmjow is able to run through Luppi on his arm, showing enough strength with his fingers to pierce flesh. This Troper was watching a show about animal-inspired Kung Fu, and Tiger Style artists train their fingers to have this kind of power.
Look at Mayuri's speech about perfection, about how becoming the absolute best would only stunt your growth, as it offers nothing more to learn or overcome, and that for scientists especially, perfection would only bring about despair. Now, analyze what just happened by the end of the Deicide arc: Once Ichigo became one with his Hollow and Shinigami selves, having fully mastered both sides to his soul, he had become the "perfect hybrid", in the sense that his power was unmatched, even by Aizen. Just the same, with this whole "Transcendence" (perfect hybridization) in mind, there was literally nowhere for Ichigo's power to go after that (there's the "perfection shall stagnant growth" part). No one could possibly become stronger than Ichigo was; his Nakama would never be able to catch up to him again; he could defeat any enemy he ever came across; he may have even been labeled as a threat to the Soul Society for his power (there's the "perfection brings despair" part). With all that in mind, the only other door for Ichigo to walk through was for him to completely lose all of his power via Mugetsu, thereby tossing aside and escaping that perfection by reverting back into a human. Coincidence or is Kubo smarter than we give him credit for?
Ichigo's hair is the color that Asians get when the BLEACH it... geddit? BLEACH it? (Corniness)
Funny, but that is, in a way, connected to why Kubo named it that. He wanted to play around with the black/white contrast, and said that bleach causes people to think of that.
Harribel as an Espada has more raw power than Ulquiorra (though probably not his rankless second transformation), coming up behind only the former king of Hueco Mundo and a Hollow who leaks enough energy to kill most things around him. Yet in her anime-only flashback, she gets her Vasto Lorde butt kicked by a former Adjuchas. Maybe the Hougyoku provides that much of a power boost. Maybe her opponent was a Wonderweiss prototype, an Arrancar that swapped its mind and not its high-speed regeneration for power. But what we do know about Harribel is that she rejects power gained by killing and eating others. She would have had to do that to reach Vasto Lorde stage, and only then stop, stunting her growth and keeping her near the level she was when she initially evolved. The Hougyoku unlocks all possible potential, powering Harribel up all the way without her gaining her power the usual Hollow way.
While Vasto Lordes presumably don't have to eat hollows to grow stronger (it's implied but not said in the manga) it is possible that they—like Shinigamis—need to eat just for nutritional purposes, and that she was actually slowly starving herself to death.
So Szayel Aporro's Hollow hole is located in his penis, more specifically in the glans. Then you realize that the smallest Hollow hole we've seen was no smaller than that you could fit a golf ball through with maybe 1/4 of an inch of free space on each side. Szayel Aporro, the living incarnation of Squick, has a Biggus Dickus.Fridge Horror or Fridge Brilliance?
Maybe he's just a normal-sized penis and the hole is simply proportionated and thus smaller than your usual hollow hole.
It is forbidden to transfer Shinigami powers to a normal human. Reason? Aizen and Shao-Long said it themselves. Basically (paraphrased and summarized): " A dead soul be it Shinigami or Hollow has a set point to where their power can reach. After that they stagnate and their power stops growing." They ARE dead so that's "DUH" right? Humans, however, keep growing and we age. The dead don't. Ichigo is basically a result of why that law is in place. If the law wasn't in place what would stop, say a Shinigami from having 3 kids, have 3 Shinigami transfer their power to the kids, give them training from hell akin to Ichigo, help them master their growing powers then have 3 kids end up like Ichigo near the end of the Deicide Arc? Yeah... In case your lost, it's to make sure no unstoppable gods are made.
Before his supposed death Aizen pointed out that Rukia transferring her powers was a minor offense at most and the Shinigami constantly express surprise at how powerful Ichigo and (during the Soul Society arc) the rest of his friends are. They clearly don't expect humans to get that kind of power. Besides the flashbacks we see of Renji, Byakuya, Suifon, Ikkaku and Yumichika suggest they weren't as powerful as they are now, implying that Shinigami can increase their power. - Grant
"A dead soul be it Shinigami or Hollow HAS A SET POINT WHERE IT'S POWER CAN REACH. After that they stagnate and their power stops growing." I wasn't suggesting that the others had reached their peak. I always figured they could get stronger if they weren't lazy and made the effort. Urahara did say that when a soul is in danger, its reiatsu increases dramatically. Ichigo'x soul has been through A METRIC BUTTLOAD of danger and he always comes out stronger due to this. The others have too but not to the extent Ichigo's has. - Average NOOB
There is a very good reason why the Espada did not matter that much in Aizen's plans, the same way Gin and Tousen didn't matter that much in the end. It all goes back to Aizen's claims about Ichigo being what he needed for his research. Aizen did not need the Espada, since he showed he could defeat the Shinigami Captains all with his own power, aside from Yamamoto; he did not need Tousen or Gin either, one who desired vengeance for his friend's death, and the other who wanted revenge against Aizen. So why did he recruit all of them, and create the army of Arrancar? Curiosity. And a smoke-screen. The Espada were nothing more than a "false army" to distract Soul Society from his true goals, goals which had to do with Ichigo's developing power, and him becoming a "Being that transcends Hollow and Shinigami". Aizen didn't need the Espada, or Tousen and Gin to help him take on the Royal Guard and the Soul King: he believed that, once he became a Transcendental Being, he would not need anyone's assistance. Every single character, both on soul Society's side and on Aizen's side were hoodwinked.
Hiyori's injury is changed in the anime from being cut in half by Gin to being Impaled with Extreme Prejudice, and while she is still in one piece, the injuries remain critical. At the time the episode aired, Gin's Zanpakuto's poison ability had recently been revealed.
In the Halloween image, along with the episode based on it, the main characters are dressed as different monsters. Ichigo just happens to be Frankenstein's Monster. The point is, Ichigo is made up of parts from many different beings! They were foreshadowing that Ichigo is part-everything for years!
Old Man Genocide has no aptitude for strategy. No wait...hear me out. During the Soul Society Arc, his only orders were, in order: "Stay on guard for the ryoka" and "All Zanpakuto are allowed to be released." Honestly he just seems to rely on being one of the strongest people (in brute force anyway) to handle his problems yet gets outwitted by guys like Kisuke, Aizen and the Vandenreich who know how to plan things and play Xanatos Speed Chess when needed. How else would you explain the oldest character in Bleach being outsmarted by others way younger than him? He's 1000 years old yet guys round about 300 centuries play him like a puppet. - Average NOOB
He's MORE than 1,000 years old. The first war with Juha Bach happened 1,000 years ago, and he was already middle-aged and bankai capable then, so he was several centuries old when he became the Captain-Commander.
As far as we know the extermination of the Quincies which was hundreds of years ago and the sudden killing/hollowification/whatever he thought it was of captains and lieutenants which seemingly ended as quickly as it began 100 years ago are the only "recent" events in Soul Society for Yamamoto to deal with. He is rusty. The leader of the Quincies even points out peace has made Yamamoto weak.
And complacent unfortunately. He even called Kurotsuchi's suspicions of a Quincy invasion paranoia. That just screams "I think way to highly of my abilities" and makes him come across as a know-it-all who gets angry when disagreed with. - Average NOOB
Everyone (especially 11th Division) fears Unohana. And then it's revealed, that she's the first Kenpachi and that her real name is Yachiru. No wonder everyone is terrified of her. Especially since, even if they don't know, Kenpachi named Yachiru after a woman he "greatly respected." Anyone who realized Unohana's real first name would be horrified from that alone.
Dear God, it all makes sense now. Has anyone else ever wondered why someone as coarse, powerful and sadomasochistic as Kenpachi Zaraki is so incredibly lenient towards his enemies? He hates killing people. He hates even mercy killing. This gives rise to two possible scenarios where Unohana is concerned: A, Zaraki respects her because she is very much like him, extraordinarily powerful yet disdainful of killing (see Unohana's selfless treatment of former Espada Gantenbainne Mosqueda). Option B is that Zaraki was originally a Nihilist a lá Ulquiorra until Unohana taught him.
Debunked in the latest chapter, as it's revealed that Unohana was a merciless killer before being the 11th captain.
Not sure if this is fridge or not, but I noticed that Urahara seems to surround himself with children (Jinta, Ururu, Hiyori, and even Ichigo is still only a teenager). Leads me to think that maybe Kisuke wants to be a dad and have a family.
This is most likely coincidental, as Gin and Tosen both had actual reasons to join Aizen, but I realized something. Aizen's shikai is ridiculously powerful, but it still can only be used on someone if they've seen it before. This applies to most of Soul Society, excluding Ichigo, and possibly a few other individuals. Who might they be? Gin and Tosen. And why? Well, one of Gin's defining traits is that his eyes are always closed, so it could be assumed that he's never actually seen Aizen's shikai. And Tosen is blind so he's definitely never seen it. In other words, they're two people who would legitimately never ever be affected by Suigetsu. With that in mind, it makes even more sense that Aizen would want to make sure that they're on his side, considering that his zanpakuto is useless against them.
Ichigo's resemblance to Kaien Shiba makes a lot more sense after we find out in chapter 529 that Isshin was the head of the Shiba clan before taking his wife's surname as his own. Ichigo and Kaien are family!
If Ichigo's unlocking his Quincy powers, why is getting his bankai back such a big deal? Answer: With bankai, he could use Blut Vene continuously without sacrificing offense, because his bankai is just as powerful as Blut Arterie.
In the Arrancar arc, Rangiku and co. enter Ichigo's house through the ductwork, despite the doors being perfectly viable given the circumstances; its made clear it was Rangiku's idea to do so - and Hitsugaya enters via the window, bypassing the rest of the house entirely. Isshin is Rangiku and Hitsugaya's former Captain, who they were fairly close to. They were trying to avoid seeing him because they knew he'd recognize them and visa-versa, and wanted to avoid the pain of seeing him again, in addition to avoiding awkward conversation and explanation - they don't know he's aware of his son's involvement.
If Rangiku and Toushiro are well aware that Ichigo is their former captain's son, then it was a good decision to do so. Why?? because Ichigo would've gone ballistic if he found out the truth that much earlier.
When Ichigo is first fighting Ikkaku, Ikkaku mentions how Ichigo acts like a complete and total amateur and doesn't even know many things that you should know when you're in a fight. This can easily be explained away because of the fact that Ichigo literally is new to the entire sword-fighting thing. However Ikkaku then goes on to say that at the same time as he acts and speaks like an amateur his reactions are like that of someone who, from what I recall, has been fighting for quite a long time. Now factor in the fact that at this point in time Hollow Ichigo's mask has been protecting Ichigo from damage that would kill him, even though he's asleep, and you can easily realize that perhaps all of those reactions were actually from Hollow Ichigo forcing Ichigo's body to react and respond in a way that would protect and defend him, because he certainly doesn't want to die with Ichigo even if he's asleep or whatever inside him. That would mean that the entire time Ichigo has ever fought he hasn't actually won any battles on his own, because he's been unconsciously relying on Hollow Ichigo's reactions to keep him alive. If it wasn't for the Hollow within him he wouldn't have survived almost any of the battles he's been in, because his amateur abilities would have been severely outclassed by those who have been training for so many years.
With the revelation of what Zangetsu truly is to Ichigo, Ichigo's major power boost in the Deicide arc suddenly makes sense in a different light. The merging of Zangetsu and Ichigo's hollow was not the merging of his shinigami and hollow powers - it was instead the merging of his quincy powers and his shinigami powers - the shinigami half just happened to have hollow in it. Therefore while Aizen transcended the barrier between shinigami and hollow, Ichigo transcended the barrier between shinigami, hollow, and quincy, a representation of all of his heritage.
Is it possible that the Final Getsuga Tensho is actually Ichigo's Quivcy-Letz Stil? it seams to work on a similar premises and the power loss was healed the same way.
It's entirely possible that it was a combination of his Bankai and that. Remember, the abilities of quincies and shinigami are on completely opposite sides of the spectrum. If anyone were to somehow transcend the barrier between not only them but also that of a hollow, they'd easily be the most powerful character in the series - like Mugetsu Ichigo. Since Ichigo's inner hollow is his zanpakuto, and he merged with Zangetsu, the manifestation of his quincy powers, they became the manifestation of the combination between both quincy and shinigami - something practically unheard of.
What happens when he learns Vollstandig? I mean that is supposed to be a more powerful Letz stil with out it's drawbacks if he learns that then he could hypothetically combine it with Saigo no Getsuga Tensho and then he would be god.
This also explains why the Vandenreich were unable to steal his Bankai - because Ichigo's never used his actual Bankai.
Lots of what seemed asspulls make a frightening amount of sense after this revelation. Yes, Ichigo power indeed fluctuates wildly, depending on how well Old Man Zangetsu suppresses it. That immense wave of power which has beaten Zaraki back in the Soul Society arc? Apocalypse Hollow Ichigo form which flattened Ulqiorra? That was the actual level of Ichigo's shinigami power all along. Every time when he struggled against seemingly weaker foes, he was actually held back from fully unleashing his potential by Old Man Zangetsu.
Likewise the idea that Zangetsu was holding Ichigo back makes far more sense when you realize that almost every time Ichigo was in danger, his hollow self stepped in to protect him. Zangetsu told him the name of Getsuga Tensho and gave him "bankai" but Hollow Ichigo protected him from Renji's and Kenpachi's attacks, stepped in to fight Byakuya, showed him different ways of using Zangetsu (using the cloth to throw Zangetsu as a flail and using Getsuga in "bankai"), and fought Ulquiorra after Ichigo "died".
Back to the Final Getsuga Tensho: it really the true form of Ichigo's power and possibly his Bankai, due to the fact that the true form of Ichigo's zanpakuto is when his inner hollow and Zangetsu are combined. The reintegration of Ichigo's quincy powers into his true zanpakuto allows him to wield its true form - which exemplifies the two extremes of his nature (shinigami and quincy), represented by the inner hollow and Zangetsu, by it's dual wielding form.
In fact, the protectiveness of Ichigo's inner hollow makes sense on yet another level. The Visored's had their hollows implanted by Aizen - Ichigo's was always there, from the day of his birth and born of his soul, unlike the other inner hollows. While those hollows are basically parasites, Ichigo's is a mere reflection, an Anthropomorphic Personification of his hollow and soul reaper powers. Those hollows will basically attempt to take over their host's bodies, while Ichigo's will do anything protect him, because he basically is Ichigo, which is why his status as Ichigo's real zanpakuto shouldn't have been surprising.
Remember during Ichigo's first fight with Zaraki where Zangetsu said he'd try to hold off Ichigo's bleeding? With recent revelations it might have been Zangetsu using Blut Vene.
I was playing Bleach: Soul Resurrección today when I realized that the Enemy Detecting Radar might be justified by being a representation of a character's ability to sense nearby sources of spiritual energy.
White, who eventually became the avatar of Ichigo's Hollow powers, only appeared when it started to rain. Old Man Zangetsu hates rain. Why? Because he is the avatar of Ichigo's Quincy powers, and Quincies hate Hollows.
Quincies normally favoring bows when Hollow hunting makes perfect sense after it was revealed that they have no resistance to Hollow powers. A single scratch from a Hollow's claw could spell doom for a Quincy. Of course they would use a weapon that doesn't require them to get too close to Hollows. The Vandenreich have no problem using melee weapons/attacks since their opponents are Shinigami.
Going back to Ichigo's battle with Kenpachi, remember the aura that surrounded Ichigo before the last clash? It was bright blue and shaped like a Hollow's mask. Not only is the mask a big clue about Zangetsu's true identity, but what is one of the main colors that represents the Quincies?
Remember when Ichigo first met the black-robed Zangetsu? He couldn't hear/understand his name. At first it just seemed like an attempt to hold off on saying the name "Zangetsu" until the most dramatic moment, but then you find out that the black-robed Zangetsu is a remnant of Yhwach. Yhwach's name is pretty hard for Japanese (and quite a few non-Japanese) people to pronounce, so it makes sense that his real name wouldn't compute to a 15-year-old Japanese native who probably had only a basic grasp of English.
Chizuru's Karakurizer suit is designed to rape enemies. And Mizuiro was supposed to be the fifth member!
Ichigo's Fullbring has been given to Xcution and Allows any Fullbring to be worn. Thing makes the powers of Tsukishima so much more powerful now that they're not limited to his sword.
Actually it seems that they've been given only to the lesser members of Xcution: during his fight against Byakuya Tsukishima still tries to hit him with his sword, meaning that he needs it.
A little bit of extra brilliance here as to why Jackie Tristan and Giriko Kutsuzawa were so easily curbstomped. Dirty Boots and Time Tells No Lies: both are Fullbring where the focus is already an accessory to be worn. Since Ichigo's Fullbring was a "clad type", instead of the focus being rapidly increasing the POWER of both their Fullbrings, their EFFECTS were altered to be more like Ichigo's (i.e. Jackie is more powerful when her entire BODY is dirty, not just her boots).
Unohana. No, seriously. As pointed out near the top of this page, someone who is particularly skilled at healing would also be particularly skilled at killing. However, since she has a whole squad of healers under her command, and is herself an accomplished healer, you won't die unless she lets you. Suddenly, her scaring the shit out of everyone in Soul Society (including squad eleven, whose leader is KenpachiZaraki) becomes somewhat less funny, and a whole lot more terrifying.
She's to healing what Yamamoto is to mass destruction in Soul Society; one you don't want to anger but can't really do without. Ukitake comments at one point about there being no-one capable of replacing Yamamoto, and it's not far-fetched to think the same applies to Unohana because, in her own area, she is just that much better than anyone else. Like the old man, she has some recent examples; her helping Ichigo as he traveled to fight Aizen, and then able to save Hiyori from being cut in two. Now, if some villain has sense they'd target the old captains, not the kids...
They don't target the old guys precisely because of how scary they are. Kyoraku effectively [[one-shotted]] the Primera with his SHIKAI after two visoreds hadn't hurt him seriously, and after Starrk had shot him point-blank with a cero and gashed his side open. Considering that every other espada kill involved bankai plus other tricks (Byakuya's and Hachi's barriers, Mayuri's operation, Ichigo's hollow) and that those espada were WEAKER than Starrk, we see how scary Kyoraku can be. Yamamoto, even somewhat senile, was so powerful that Aizen made Wonderweiss solely to make him weaker (not even kill him, just make him weaker). Judging by Wonderweiss's size, he was probably a Vasto Lord, and Aizen turned him autistic instead of another espada because he was scared. It's even possible that he left Toshiro and Momo alive ON PURPOSE at Central 46 so that Unohana would be too busy healing them to attack him. Note that he ran right after she showed up.
Kyoraku recently revealed that Unohana was the first Kenpachi. Not only that, she outright stated that she learned healing arts JUST SO she can enjoy her fights as long as possible. Not So Harmless indeed
In a recent flashback one of her subordinates points out a mountain of corpses next to her. Her response? Ask aloud and sincerely if she made that pile. Granted, she didn't, but really that just makes it worse, since it just shows how much this woman is so accustomed to killing and being around dead bodies.
How long did Riruka keep that guy she "fell in love with" hidden away?
In Bleach, Ukitake has been sick with Tuberculosis for at least a century. It doesn't seem unreasonable that this would have been considered a seriously debilitating disease at the point he caught it, as it was known to kill people pretty effectively in the past. However, now, in the 21st Century, TB is quite curable, and Soul Society has been shown to possess technological advances far beyond the mortal world. So, this leaves FOUR disturbing possibilities:
Soul Society is so out of touch with the human world that they haven't even bothered to notice that a deadly disease that affects a Captain's job performance has a cure.
Soul Society knows this, but decides that curing Ukitake's condition is either impossible or impractical for any number of political/sociological reasons.
Shinigami physiology is SO foreign compared to humans that either a cure wouldn't work or the disease has spent a century mutating into something even more horrific.
People are stuck with certain diseases after they die, imprinted onto their spiritual body in a constant incurable state for all eternity.
Those are all very good explanations, but Ukitake was never said to have Tuberculosis. The fans just assumed he did because he coughs up blood, which happens to be a symptom of many diseases—not just TB. TB is contagious so if it was TB, I wouldn't put Ukitake in a position where he is in contact with a lot of people (like a captain is...). Also, he comes from an aristocratic family and has siblings, so I seriously doubt that he was born in the human world. In the Bleach character book SOULS, it says that he contracted the disease when he was young, so he wasn't born with it. We also know from the incident with Hisana that people in Soul Society can become sick despite being healthy in the human world. I think it's safe to say that these are diseases unique to Souls, and far beyond what could be cured by human methods. And if Soul Society had a way to cure Hisana, I'm damn sure Byakuya would have used it.
I went to the other wiki and found this piece of info: "When people suffering from active pulmonary TB cough, sneeze, speak, sing, or spit, they expel infectious aerosol droplets 0.5 to 5 µm in diameter." Yeah. If Ukitake has TB, his squad is totally screwed. Incurable Cough of Death, indeed.
But again, it goes without saying that the idea of Ukitake having tuberculosis is widely-accepted Fanon and nothing more. It's very well possible given his ailment, but whatever disease he's suffering from has yet to be explicitly diagnosed as tuberculosis.
Soul Society itself is arguably this. While the Shinigami-dominated system isn't so odd in shonen series, stop to consider what we know about parts of Soul Society from Yachiru's flashbacks, the occasional genocide of artificial life forms and the fact that some of the most important captains are actually unrepentent murders. Suddenly Soul Society is more like a military-dominated state that doesn't seem to care much about much beyond keeping itself in power. Heck, if it wasn't for Aizen's really dickish actions his efforts would seem much more reasonable.
Ashido Kano. Everything about the man screams absolute fridge terror. First of all, there's the fact that he's been living inside the FOREST OF MENOS for over half a millennium. Yes. The man's been living in the nesting place of the most powerful hollows in Bleach for over 500 years, which is longer than some of today's Captains have even been alive. Then there's the realization of how difficult it's been for him—all of his friends and allies are dead, and he has to either not use his Release or kill absolutely everything that sees him. These are Menos, the weakest of which are a massive challenge for even a Lieutenant.
Aizen claims Wonderweiss gave up his speech, his memories, his emotions, and his sanity to serve the purpose Aizen had for him. He never once even suggested that Wonderweiss did so willingly.
After Ichigo goes berserk during the last part of the fight against Ulquiorra, he finishes him by planting his foot on his head and hitting him with a point-blank Cero aimed at his head. Then the manga cuts away for some reaction shots and a quick visit to Rukia and the others. Then we return to Ulquiorra, who is inexplicably missing the lower half of his body and left arm. Then you notice that the wounds are straight-edged. Holy shit, was Ichigo carving him up like a Christmas turkey while the two of them were off-screen?
Tsukishima's Fullbring, "Book of the End." It is an ability that allows him to rewrite the past of whomever or whatever is cut by it. No, not their memories. Their actual past, as in, swapping in an alternate timeline of the wielder's liking. Everything and anything in your past will have been arranged exactly as the wielder desires. Your entire past could be a carefully-fabricated lie, and you'd never even realize it. Now imagine that power in the hands of a stalker. Or a ruthless dictator. Or AIZEN.
Oh, crap indeed. For an even worse bit of terror, imagine if Aizen not only had Tsukishima's power, but was able to use it in tandem with his own Zanpaktou's shikai. Not only would he be able to manipulate peoples senses, he'd also be able to rewrite the past as he saw fit.
You know, they never mention his Bankai at all, and it seems obvious that he's powerful enough to have one...
Captain Hitsugaya's cold personality (and in effect, his Zanpakuto) at first seems pretty standard, nothing really special. It's lampshaded a few times, but even then it really is just your regular Jerk with a Heart of Gold. However, when looking through the series again, I noticed something interesting: Hitsugaya has been in Soul Society since he was a little kid. He still is a kid, actually, but judging by the age of him in his flashbacks it would appear that he's been living there since he was at least a first-grader. But wait, if he lives in Soul Society, wouldn't he have had to have DIED first? It's hardly unreasonable to think that this was the cause of his cold personality. After all, if you live a full life and die happily, you'll be pretty content. But actually dying when you can't even be any older than twelve years old would surely be extremely traumatic.
At one point, he looks about the age of 9, and it's implied that he had already been with his Grandmother and Momo for a while. With a good parental figure and lots of nurturing, children can continue their lives without any long term effects or suffering from bad experiences. He seemed to be pretty well content with Momo and his Grandmother. Based on how he acts with Momo, I think it's more likely that he just considers himself the 'man of the family' so to speak, and takes things more seriously. I don't think it has anything to do with being traumatized.
Furthermore, it's implied that he froze to death, which is why his Zanpakuto is ice-based.
This troper was always inclined to believe that Hitsugaya's cold personality has more of something to do with the fact that he was ostracized by his entire village except for Hinamori and his grandmother. With an experience like that, its not surprising for children to develop cold and aloof personalities. On that note, this troper also believes that its also the reason why he tries so hard to protect Momo, despite whatever fans complain about her being not worth it. In a time where almost everyone he knew disliked him, she was one of the only two who openly cared for him and considered him a friend. Naturally, Hitsugaya would easily forgive her despite her attacking him for her captain's sake, because he hasn't forgotten what she's done for him when they lived in Rukongai.
When Byakuya and Kenpachi are fighting against Yammy, Mayuri is openly expressing a trait of dissecting dead combatants, whether ally or enemy. When Ichigo comes back to fetch Kuugo's body from the Soul Society for burial in the World of the Living, Sui-Feng informs him that out of the Captains that come to greet him, Mayuri and Ukitake aren't present. One can only guess, but....
Ginjo mentions that Tsukishima's ability allows him to make people believe he is their friend, mentor, cousin, or lover. It gives the term "mind rape" a whole new layer.
Although the exact mechanics of it haven't been fully explained yet, its been stated that when a Shinigami kills a Hollow, the Hollow is reborn/souls are restored, and they can apparently be reincarnated in a cycle. Quincy, on the other hand, destroy souls completely. If that's the case, then that may mean that the shinigami killed by them, are officially gone for good, never to be seen again!
Well, since Shinigami are already dead, wouldn't being killed by anything destroy them forever?
The soul will just return to the World of the Living to be reborn as a new lifeform. The soul is not destroyed. Only Quincies destroy souls, meaning the soul will never be reborn again because it's gone forever. In other words, not only is a Quincy destroying the life the soul is currently living, they're also destroying all the lives the soul will ever live in the future. It's not one soul = one life that the Quincy has destroyed, it's one soul = countless future lives that will never have a chance to exist.
This doubles as brilliance, but this is exactly why Ryuuken never killed Grand Fisher, despite obviously having so many chances to do so; doing so would erase Masaki's soul forever. It HAD to be Isshin who would take their revenge, or else the woman they both loved would be destroyed forever.
Recent chapters reveal the truth to be even worse, the souls of those slain by the Quincy don't reincarnate not because they are destroyed but because they areabsorbed by Yhwach.
In Chapter 510, Juhabach states that he broke into the First Division's Headquarters in order to speak to Aizen, who refused to join up with him. However, he did not clarify what else he did, leaving 3 options: 1. He killed Aizen (good), but it means he's 'that' much more powerful. 2. He simply left Aizen sealed/tied up (ok). 3. He set Aizen free, meaning that Aizen is now currently on the loose with nobody knowing about it (very bad).
Well you can put your worries to rest. Chapter 514 shows that he's still rotting in jail. Of course, this is Aizen we're talking about...
In Chapter 511, Juhabach recalls the Gotei 13 before the Quincy extermination, when they were called just "Divisions." They were just bloodthirsty killers who would use any methods to win. The Fridge Horror sets in upon two realizations.
1.What happened to the other leaders in the divisions after Yamamoto 'became soft'?
2.If the "Divisions" were bloodthirsty and violent before Yamamoto's change, what are the Zero Guard like?
3.What exactly does this mean regarding Captain Unohana, whom everybody seems to fear?! She may be one of the original "killers" alongside Yamamoto!
Quite possibly, given her true identity...
More liek has been and always will be the worst criminal. Now remember that Aizen is still in the mind of everyone...
Throughout the entire assault on the Gotei 13, there was only one brief activation of Vollstandig by one of the Stern Ritter. The Stern Ritter have crushed the Gotei 13, and none of them used their trump card.
Related to the above mentions of Unohana: unless she's been pulling a Yumichika with Minazuki this entire time and in light of her recent battle with Kenpachi (currently a Curb-Stomp Battle on Unohana's part, by the way), there's a distinct possibility that Unohana didn't learn her healing techniques from Kirinji aftershe renounced her title as the first Kenpachi and 11th Division Captain, but instead was a Combat Medic from the very start and used her medicinal knowledge to sadistically and horrifically prolong her fights by mending the wounds she just inflicted. It'd be a terrifying take on the concept of a Martial Medic/Deadly Doctor. In 526, she admits that this really is the reason she wanted to learn the healing arts.
Adding to that, even if she does learn her healing skills from Kirinji, let's take a second look on Kirinji's fountains of healing. Essentially, the fountains work by breaking down the patient's body before reconstituting it, sometimes several times. What if Unohana's healing work the same way? See, her bankai dissolves the flesh, and after the flesh is dissolved, she probably uses her healing skills to rebuild the flesh. Is this perhaps why her Minazuki heals people by eating them?
From chapter 537, Uryuu's Missing Mom died when Yhwach purged the clan of all Quincies deemed insufficiently "pure", stealing their powers for himself. But Kanae didn't die immediately—she slipped into a coma and lingered for three months before expiring. That's already pretty horrifying, but think about it for a few minutes more and it gets worse: Ryuuken's a doctor—he's been trained to dread losing a patient even if that person is a perfect stranger. He had to watch his wife die for three months while unable to do anything to help her. Remember how bad he freaked out when his cousin collapsed in front of him and he couldn't save her? Gray Rain of Depression indeed.
Making it even worse is that Kanae wasn't just his wife. She was also a loyal friend he's known since childhood. Ryuuken had to watch someone who's been there for him nearly his entire life die a slow wasting death while he was utterly powerless to prevent it. All because of her Quincy heritage. No wonder he doesn't like being a Quincy.
It's even worse than that. One of the last things we hear her say in that flashback arc is that she wants to protect him from anything that happens... in the end, he was powerless to do the same for her: not his medical training, not his quincy powers. Nothing. Not being able to reciprocate loyalty like that, making such a vow seem so terribly hollow, must be soul-destroying.
Going into a bit of WMG here, this gives Ryuuken even more motivation to destroy the Quincies. Going as far as sending his own son into the lions' den.
Small but classic bit of Fridge Logic from chapter 537: Ryuuken's a regular enough smoker that he carries a pack of cigarettes, a lighter, and a can for the ashes around with him... despite being a doctor and presumably aware of the health effects of tobacco use. He's also outlived every member of his immediate family except Uryuu and is only in his early to mid 40s. He probably doesn't expect to survive long enough for lung cancer to become a major concern.
From the fourth movie, Kokuto claims that following his sister's death and the death of her murderers, he "set out to make everyone feel the same pain that he did". This probably implies that he was a serial killer that murdered younger sisters or even little girls before he was sent to hell. It also shows with Yuzu; he has absolutely no problem with dropping her into a pool of lava and taunting Ichigo with her dead body.
This would also explain why he ended up in hell in the first place.
The fact that Juha Bach can control whether he can steal powers from his Quincy brethren, this puts a creepy, new perspective into the death of a few of the Vandenreich.
Chapter 540 revealed that Old Man Zangetsu is the personification of his Quincy powers and he has been using him for most of his fights. Now, does his Shinigami powers allow the spirits to go the Soul Society or does his Quincy powers cause them to be erased?
Not quite. The next chapter reveals that The Old Man had actually been suppressing Ichigo's Shinigami powers all along in an attempt to prevent him from ever becoming a Shinigami. Every time the Old Man "helped" him he always used Ichigo's Hollow's (his true Zanpakutou spirit) power to do so. Ichigo's Quincy powers only manifested very recently as a side effect of being trapped in a cage of spirit particles. Ichigo has been fighting with a mere fraction of his Shinigami powers throughout the entire series.
So Ouetsu Nimaiya is finally going to forge Ichigo's zanpakuto, giving the boy his weapon back. Hurray!. One problem though: Out of the many bankai users who fight Vandenreich, Ichigo is the only one whose bankai cannot be stolen. The reason is eventually revealed: Tensa Zangetsu is not Shinigami power, but rather Quincy power, and thus is not affected by the bankai-stealing tool. Now that Ichigo will get a real zanpakuto, he will finally be susceptible to the bankai-stealing tool. If Mayuri and/or Urahara can't create a counter-measure against that, Soul Society will be screwed either way.
They most likely will develop countermeasures, because Quincies also have an offensive Blut, made specifically for fighting bankai-wielding enemies. If they won't, then instead of bankai vs. Blut Arterie we'll be seeing shikai vs. Blut Vene for the rest of the series, which isn't cool.
Ichigo is still shown to have Quincy powers prevalent in his sword, if the shiny new offhand weapon is any indication. He may still possess elements of his original "bankai" when we see his true one. Alternatively, this will be a brand new power for him, meaning that it might not be stealable since Ichigo hasn't learned all there is to know about it. Yhwach may try to steal it during their inevitable showdown, it all depends on who much of a troll Kubo is being.
Going way back to 226 for this one, but the use of Vollstandig by the Stern Ritter got me thinking recently: The technique Ryuuken uses to restore Uryuu's powers after Letzt Stil requires the subject to be run to physical and mental exhaustion and then shot through a chakra point less than an inch from a major organ. I can buy that Ryuuken personally learned this from some sort of spellbook. But how exactly did their ancestors discover this combination worked, anyway?? Medical experimentation on par with Mayuri? Friendly fire incident?? Botched execution?
And as to why Ryuken himeself would even need to learn such an method? Because Kanae had her powers stolen from her! Ryuken may have learned it and tried (but failed), in an effort to restore her powers and save her life! Also, since he knows that Uryuu survived Yhawch's selection, then he would be more certain of it working!
Now that's just making it worse. Remember that one condition for this power-restoring ritual to work is for the target to be physically and mentally exhausted. Sure, being an Ill Girl means Kanae is easily physically exhaused, but mentally exhausted? That's the problem: For Ryuuken to mentally exhaust Uryuu isn't an issue seeing that they hate each other, but for Ryuuken to stress out the woman she loves? Probably he failed to restore her power because he just couldn't bring himself to mentally torture her. Poor guy.
That also raises Fridge. The manga didn't claim Ryuuken hates Uryuu or being a Quincy, only that Ryuuken is avoiding Quincy issues for unknown reasons and that Uryuu thinks Ryuuken hates him and Quincies. When Uryuu's unconscious after Letzt Stil restoration, Ryuuken implies his frustration stems from how Uryuu is using his power, which isn't what Uryuu thinks Ryuuken's issue is. In the Mayuri/Uryuu fight, Souken implied Uryuu's wrong, that Ryuuken's trying to protect Uryuu but doesn't want to talk about it. The final arc offers clues about what Souken was talking about. If he's right, Uryuu's going to end up feeling very guilty because that's the type of guy he is.
How about Souken and Ryuuken knew Uryuu would abuse Letzt Stil and made sure there was a technique for restoring Uryuu's powers? If Yhwach is the guy who created Quincies, how is it possible for any other Quincy to grant Quincy powers? Doesn't that get awfully close to the idea of Quincy creation? What if it's something only the First Quincy and Last Quincy can do? That would mean Yhwach and the Ishida family are different to other Quincies.
We know that when an Arrancar is killed they souls are purified (or go to hell), now think about what happens to all those souls when someone like Barragan kills himself??
Starrks's death. Kyoroku simply cuts him down and he falls to the ground, which you wouldn't think would kill the Primera Espada. But he's confirmed to have died. This is even more jarring because Harribel was also cut down by someone and fell to the ground, but she's still very much alive. But then you think about how she's alive: Orihime went to the Fake Karakura Town and just happened to run into Harribel's Fraccion, who immediately asked her to heal Harribel. This would mean that Harribel was still alive up to that point, or at least within the margin of saving... Starrk suffered the same fate as Harribel. Starrk may very well have still been alive after he hit the ground. Starrk, probably the least amoral Espada, very likely suffered a slow, painful, lonely death because no one came to help him...
And thus, he died due to his aspect of death.
I always assumed that Kyoraku's shikai just simply did THAT much damage and really killed him with one hit, it only being a "minor" physical injury aside.
Which is only logical considering the fact that Kyoraku threw off his cape so that he was wearing his black robe externally while targeting the inside of Starrk's Hollow hole. Black was the most dangerous color for Kyoraku and the least dangerous for Starrk, so a critical hit is to be expected.
You do have a point. But then again he's apparently conscious right after as he has time to reflect on his defeat and how his life was as he falls to the ground. Perhaps he did die immediately afterward, but then again we don't really know since we never see him again after that. Although, now I have to wonder if Kubo's gonna pull another "Grimmjow's Alive" on us...
Urahara and Mayuri said that if a Quincy is infected with Hollow energy, there is no chance for the Quincy to become hollowified; rather, the Quincy would explode, soul and all. No wonder that when Masaki took an injury from a Hollow, Katagiri and eventually the rest of Ishida household took that issue SERIOUSLY.
Urahara stabilising the Visored right after Aizen hollowfied them, he stated that it required a Quincy arrow which he must've had in his lab, he never mentions how he got it and as a Soul Reaper, it's unlikely that any Quincy survivor would give him an arrow willing, remember that even Kurotsuchi finds him creepy, the Quincy experiments probably didn't start with Kurotsuchi and they were probably better off with Kurotsuchi doing the experiments.
The Quincy Emperor is the Antichrist. He presents himself as a life-bringing and life-giving king and claims divine titles and names, but in reality he's the exact opposite of Jesus, bringing only death, even to his followers, and sacrificing his followers to increase his own power. He only pretends to give of himself, when in fact, he marks those he touches or who drink his blood for destruction.
Unohana told Ichigo that he was the best one to fight Aizen because had never used his hypnosis powers on Ichigo during their fight. There are two problems with that. The first is that Ichigo has no idea whether or not Aizen used his shikai during their fight, all he knows is that he doesn't remember Aizen doing that. The second (and even more odd when you think about it) is that there's nothing that they know of to stop Aizen from using his shikai on Ichigo during the current battle.
This entire conversation is just loaded with questions. How does Unohana know that Ichigo has never been effected by Aizen's Zanpakuto if it probably isn't possible for Ichigo himself to know that? Why did they bother bringing this plot point up? It never served any real purpose considering Aizen could literally effect Ichigo whenever he wanted and just chose not to.
Actually, Aizen stated that the condition for being able to cause perfect illusions is that the target must have seen his shikai previously in its true form. Because of this, Ichigo would've at least known whether or not he could be affected by it. Furthermore, Unohana knows Ichigo never saw Aizen's shikai because he flat-out tells her he never used it. The conversation also explains why Yamamoto forbade Ichigo from going to rescue Orihime; being the only captain-level fighter who wasn't affected by Aizen's shikai, he was considered a valuable asset.
When Ichigo fought Zaraki* before managing to even get his bankai the two were going all out and it ended in a mutual KO. Much later after Ichigo has his bankai and Visored powers he still struggles against Grimmjow who is number 6 among the Espada. How the heck does Zaraki manage to kill Nnoitra who's number 5 among the Espada? Did he do some secret, off-screen never mentioned before or after training? Are power levels just bullsh*t?
His resolve was complete against Zaraki. Against Grimmjow, his resolve was all over the place. Plus, everyone had been getting stronger. Kubo seems to work by the mantra 'that which does not kill you makes you stronger' so his characters are all getting stronger all the time. No-one was at the same level of power as the Soul Society arc, hence the higher levels everyone fought at.
This is actually indirectly addressed in the series. During Ichigo's fight with Zaraki, Zaraki never bothered to learn about his Zanpakutoh, which according to Zangetsu caused both Zaraki and his Zanpakutoh to weaken each other. But once the fight is over, Zaraki decides to start trying to forge a relationship with his Zanpakutoh. By the time he fights Nnoitra, he may not have learned his Zanpakutoh's name, but he doesn't address his Zanpakutoh as an 'it' or a tool. Even if Zaraki hasn't done much training, he's now working together with his Zanpakutoh, which removes any weakness he might have had before.
Kenpachi becomes stronger every time he gets close to death. He must have gotten stronger after having his ass delivered to him by Ichigo - strong enough to defeat Nnoitra.
Oh... my... god. Golden power aura, spikey hairdo, zenkai power boost at near-death experiences... Zaraki Kenpachi is a god damned Super Saiyan.
Now, a bit of Fridge Logic: Aizen managed to survive against Yamamoto's extremely powerful suicide attack and endure his flames. So, why he said that he feared his powers, or why did he bother to create Wonderweiss in the first place?
Perhaps it was intended to test out a) what the old man would do without his zanpakuto and b) whether it was possible to seal an ancient, powerful sword in the first place. Or at least that's the sort of 'explanation' one could imagine Aizen giving on another couple of test subjects. Yamamoto did genuinely seem to catch Aizen by surprise, firstly by grabbing his sword and secondly by using the spell, indicating (Aizen being uber-prepared as he appears) that Captain Broken didn't know enough about the head captain to face him one on one and be sure of winning. So he threw poor Wonderweiss (he was afraid!) into the ring in order to work the rest out. The flames didn't matter, but maybe getting Yamamoto to provide Aizen more information did.
Aizen didn't so much survive Yamamoto's explosion as flee it. It's not like he was able to retain his position and withstand the blast he had to actively escape it as fast as he possibly could - something he was so flustered and in haste about that he dropped his guard completely enough for Ichigo to finally get a hit in. It's also pure speculation, but Aizen did have the Hougyoku inside him as well and it's only moments later that it heals the wound Ichigo gave him. It's never said, but it's possible the Hougyoku protected Aizen as he fled Yamamoto's power. He completely failed to kill Yamamoto as a result, and Yamamoto was the only captain he had actually planned to kill.
The Quincy extermination. So a bunch of humans who've been around for a short time (50-60 years maybe?) gaining power are labeled a threat by Soul Society. Quincy being able to completely eradicate a being out of existence aside, how badass must they have been to need genocide get rid of them? How hard is it to restrain them with kido and harmlessly mess up their soul sleep? How is defending yourself from Hollows due to the Gotei 13 doing a crappy job wrong? - Average NOOB
Perhaps that choice was made because it would ensure that this group of people with such powers could not grow any larger. Messing with individual souls wouldn't stop their children inheriting the same powers as their Quincy parent/s.
They did explain. Rukia states as much. The Quincy DIDN'T CARE. It is heavily implied that the Quincies' response was along the lines of "Fuck you. As far as we're concerned you are lying your ass off, and even if you're not, SO WHAT? We don't give a damn. If a soul becomes a Hollow, it doesn't deserve to exist." Kubo pretty much states that the Shinigami/Quincy conflict comes down to a question of Justice vs Vengeance, i.e. "Hollows devour souls of Humans, so why must it be that those who harm and kill friends and relatives get sent peacefully to Soul Society?"
Imagine if, instead of evaporated water condensing into clouds, it disappeared completely. That's esentially what the quincies are doing
You have a point, but...why couldn't they get rid of their powers AND memories. I mean, they have that memory replacer, why couldn't they have come up with something to selectively make them forget all about Hollows and everything to do with the Spirit World. Get rid of all solid evidence and viola! No more Quincies ever. Which means the Vandereich probably wouldn't have shown up for the finale of course...
They probably considered that, but keep in mind a: We've seen Ichigo get past having his soul sleep destroyed (Granted, that was because Byakuya destroyed the powers Rukia gave him, not his own powers) but given that both Ichigo and Uryu have had their powers "permanently" destroyed and brought back, they couldn't be sure that destroying their soul sleeps would actually be a permanent fix, and b: memory replacement doesn't seem to work on people with spiritual powers (Orihime and Karin both remember memories that were supposed to have been replaced) so it makes sense that it wouldn't work at all on Quincies.
Elaborating upon the above comment: Uryu's dad knows a method of returning a Quincy's powers after they have been lost. How did he (or any Quincy) learn that method? It's possible that the Shinigamis DID remove the Quincies' powers, but the Quincies developed that method to regain them. After that, the only choice the Shinigamis had was to kill 'em all.
With regards to the memory replacer. It might not have worked on quincies. The memory replacer failed to work on Orihime after the Sora incident. She remembered everything but kept quiet about it for a while. Then, when the world was 'reset' after Rukia was taken back to Soul Society so that everyone forget she even existed, Orihime, Sado and Uryuu all remembered exactly who she was. The thing they all have in common is powerful reiatsu (as opposed to Ichigo's other friends who have enough reiatsu to interact with the spiritual world but not to fight it). There's a very good chance the memory replacer wouldn't work on quincies.
Something recently occurred to me about Ichigo during the final battle against Aizen. It had already been stated that the coat in his Bankai gives a rough estimate of his state: the more exhausted he is, the more damaged his gear gets. It seemed odd to me that he would be able to unleash his full power immanently after three months of training without rest, until I remembered that when he fights Aizen his coat is missing a sleeve, his shoes are gone, and his gear is generally well worn. Ergo, Ichigo WASN'T at full power when he curb stomped Aizen, even before a good quarter of his power got drained blocking an attack just before he used Mugetsu. The sudden jump in power is nothing more than Ichigo learning to focus properly. (Fitting, since resolve is a major theme from the first chapter).
Why didn't Ichigo ask about Orihime repairing his broken bankai? Her powers are supposedly the ability to reject reality and reshape it to a desired outcome.
She's currently in Hueco Mundo and Squad 0 just offered him a way to fix it (granted it was after he talked to her but Squad 0 can just forcefully take him with). It's a choice between the girl who's in another dimension or the squad of badasses in front of him.
Now, there isn't a clear reason why Unohana would change her name, but, let's assume that, like Yamamoto, she wanted to forget her violent past. One has to wonder how she would hide it by re-naming herself something that translates to violent.
If that's the case, maybe she wanted to hide it from others but never let herself forget.
In the latest arc we find out from Mayuri that if a bankai is broken it can't be repaired, has to be remodeld or reforged. Ikkaku's bankai was said to have been barely slavaged and much weaker because it broke in his only manga fight where he used it. Mayuri says that Renji's bankai is still missing some joints from when Byakuya damaged it. The problem with this is that Byakuya did more than destroy a few joints. He completely destroyed Renji's bankai into several pieces. It seemed beyond saving. How could Mayuri and the lab guys hobble together Renji's bankai that was in pieces, but not hobble together Ichigo's bankai that was only into 2 pieces? Granted Ichigo's bankai probably would be weaker, but Mayuri acts like he can't even save the sword.
Break the links of a chain and try and push them back together again. The links will always been weaker than they were before and more prone to breaking frequently once they've broken once. Also, if you lost some of the links, it wouldn't even have the same length, although the inherent weakness in the links would be the main problem. That could be the case with Renji's bankai: it's shape allowed it to be 'linked' back together, but the joins of those links are now fragile with none of their old strength. Fortunately, he has a technique that accommodates broken links. Ichigo, however, has a compression bankai and while the sword is snapped in half, it did not drop out of bankai form and Ichigo has remained in his bankai clothes. Since we know his clothes are part of his bankai, Mayuri might be confounded how to reintegrate the broken sword and the power within the uniform. They seem almost disconnected now, given that Ichigo's now wearing his bankai uniform as if it's just a basic uniform. Plus, you don't just weld two solid parts together and hope for the best. It would just shatter again along the breakline the next time it was used and this is implied to be the problem with Ikkaku's bankai. In other words, Mayuri could have done for Ichigo what he did for Ikkaku - cobble the thing back together so it's a mockery of its former shape, but while Ikkaku insisted on this being done, Ichigo didn't pursue it once he was told about it.
Which presents a degree of Fridge Horror itself: Was Ikkaku that impatient/stubborn to just force it to happen, with no care for the Zanpakuto's spirit?
Stubborn, probably. He's always tried to force his zanpakutou to fight the way he wants it to rather than the way it's designed to (look how devious and underhand his shikai really is, even his hand-switching tactic is devious; yet he claims to be a straight-forward, honest fighter). Forcing the bankai to be cobbled back together is just more of the same.
What I don't understand about this is what happened to Mayuri's Bankai? It was split straight down the middle by Uryu. Surely that would be more difficult to fix than a broken sword...
Mayuri has outright stated to have "enhanced" his Bankai. He could've applied a version of Komamura's Bankai (if he heals his bankai heals) to himself.
Everyone has been saying that the Vandenreich curb-stomped Soul Society, and in a way they did, but...how big a victory was it really? Vandenreich started the battle with approx 18-20 Sternritter, counting Juha Bach, both Lloyds, and Kirge Opie; they had stolen 1 bankai. Soul Society started with 13 captains, and Ichigo (& co.) in HM. Zaraki killed 3 sternritter. Yamamoto killed 1, and since that guy had the stolen bankai the quincy presumably lost it when he died. Then he killed the three who tried to jump him, and Royd Lloyd, the other Yourself. Then Bach stole Yama's bankai and killed him. In HM Opie got cut in half and Ichigo got to Soul Society as reinforcements, and the sternritter retreated. During the battle they stole 4 other bankai, too. BUT, two of the sternritter who stole bankai were killed killed by Yamamotot, so we assume that those bankai were lost too. All in all the only important Shinigami who actually was Yamamoto, and Soul society has info on how the quincy work to prepare for next time. Meanwhile, the quincy lost a minimum of NINE (Kenpachi's 3 + the Overkill + Yama's 3+ the Yourself+ Kirge Opie=9) sternritter and come out with a total of 3 banks, instead of the potential 6 they could have had. Plus, the changes caused by Yama's death will only make things worse for the quincy in the next battle, as the powered up fighters return to the field.
There are too many holes in your logic. Yes, Zaraki and Yamamoto did kill a number of Quincy, but they only killed FIVE between the two of them. One of them is a Special War Potential, and the other is the Captain-Commander; As Nodt and Luchador Quincy showed us how dangerous the Stern Ritter are to not only the Vice-Captains, but the Captains as well, and Royd effortlessly defeating Zaraki shows how high the Stern Ritter's level of power goes. The threat of their Bankai being stolen severely weakens the Captains' combat power, because they cannot use it lest they give their enemy an extra advantage. Yes, Quilge did die, but not before he showed us exactly what the Vandenreich upper ranks are capable of. Of all the Stern Ritter in the Vandenreich Invasion, NONE OF THEM used Vollstandig to fight the Shinigami. The Glasses Quincy briefly used it, but only for a temporary speed boost that allowed him to completely outpace Kyoraku and shoot his eye out. The Vandenreich also have five Bankai at their disposal, not three, and one of them is Zanka no Tachi. That is why it was such a big victory for the Vandenreich: they turned the Shinigami Captains' greatest strength, the Bankai, into a liability through the threat of it being stolen and used against them, and none of the Stern Ritter used their trump card, the Vollstandig, in battle. This was mentioned already in the Fridge Horror section.
Another thing that this troper wanted to point out is the exact numbers of people that were killed overall in the entire war. Okay, so the Shinigami managed to kill 5 of the Quincy invaders. The last number we got on how many SHINIGAMI were killed was from Division 12 stating that around 2245 had been killed. This was BEFORE the 12th division was attacked and lost all communication, and the battle was STILL ongoing which meant they were racking up even higher total deaths during the entire time. I remember from the wiki that supposedly Gotei 13 has around only 3000 Shinigami at any one point in time. When you count the losses that we were told of you'd determine that as far as we know there would be only around 755 Shinigami left in the entire Gotei 13. BEFORE the battle had even finished, which means there's even LESS than that. Not only did they wipe out a ton of the Shinigami, you have to also consider the after-effects of this. This was only a one-time attack, they haven't even attacked AGAIN and already the Gotei 13 is down a ton of soldiers and it's just going to get WORSE when they come back and perhaps actually use their trump card. Then there's to consider the fact that there's only at most 755 Shinigami to deal with any and all Hollows that ever appear in the real world. If their response time was ALREADY pretty bad BEFORE all those deaths it's only going to get pure horrifying after that. Imagine Shinigami not being able to show up to kill a Hollow perhaps even WEEKS after it had gone on a rampage through the human world. How many people would they have eaten/turned into Hollows as well during that amount of time? How many Pluses would change into Hollows because the Shinigami didn't show up to send them on to Soul Society? The effects of the first Vandenreich attack itself wasn't just a total curbstomp on Soul Society itself, it was a massacre on their soldier numbers as WELL as completely detrimental to the entire Hollow killing and Plus burial system they'd been using since forever. With just one attack, in which they didn't even use any of their real strength. I'd have to say that compared to the 5 kills Soul Society managed on the Vandenreich, the hands down winner was completely the VR in the situation.
The Zanpakutou filler arc has become this as Zangetsu was possessed by Muramasa's powers. The old man is actually the personification of Ichigo's Quincy powers while the inner Hollow, who wasn't affected at all, is the one who does contain Ichigo's Shinigami powers.
Except that Kubo wasn't the one who wrote that arc, and therefore it's not supposed to make sense storywise and fit the future revelations.
Considering some of the revelations and how the anime fillers manage to NOT contradict a lot of stuff I keep thinking that maybe Kubo gave them a list of "people who are not supposed to meet/see each other" and some other hints towards later revelations. Like Toshiro or Rangiku meeting Isshin in the anime wouldn't be that strange, especially as Karin and Toshiro kind of made friends, but it never happened. Similiarly, Zangetsu, in the filler arc, was not seen by anyone who would have recognized Yhwach. (Unless I remember it wrong and they DID see him. Then my first point still stands, though.
How is this fridge logic? I mean, Zangetsu being possessed by Muramasa's power DOESN'T make sense, since he IS the personification of Ichigo's Quincy Power and the power supposedly works on Zanpakuto, not Quincy Powers...
Possibly heading into WMG territory, but since the latest arc showed that Ichigo's "true" zanpakuto is a Dual Wield that represents aspects of both his Shinigami/Hollow and Quincy powers, it's possible that while "Zangetsu" may not be the actual zanpakuto per say, he's still deeply connected to it. He's shown using those powers in order to teach Ichigo, even though they weren't his. Maybe Ichigo's "true zanpakuto" is actually an amalgamation, with the Old Man and the Hollow being representations of that, sort of like Kyoraku and Ukitake's swords? Alternatively, maybe the Old Man just thought it would be a bad idea if the Hollow/zanpakuto was set loose with absolutely no way to reign him in. After all, the Hollow's deepest desire is to apparently murder and consume all of Ichigo's loved ones (if you believe he was being truthful), making a "freed" version Fridge Horror in itself.
Yuzu and Karin too survived Yhwach's Auswählen. So they too must have the potential to surpass him in power.
So did Ichigo, but Yhwach didn't mention him either. Given what Yhwach said to Uryuu, it looks like he doesn't view Ichigo and his sisters as survivors of Auswählen. Were they not selected? Are they not considered Gemischt? Or is Yhwach lying about Uryuu being the only survivor in history? It has to be one of the three.
Or maybe it has something to do with their other parent being a Soul Reaper. Most Gemischts are Quincy/Muggle hybrids, but Isshin and Masaki's children are all three Quincy/Shinigami/Hollow hybrids with Fullbring potential as well. Their other powers may have been strong enough to protect them from the Auswählen or to prevent them from being recognizable as "Quincy".
Neither of the twins had developed Quincy powers at the time. They may have been unaffected by the culling by virtue of the effect only targeting people with active abilities. The series has been pretty consistent about power making one a target, and neither of them have power of note yet.
Which still fails to account for Ichigo. He already had enough active power to see ghosts when Auswählen took place, and it's been established that seeing them is enough to make you a target.
Karin has also always had a clear ability to see ghosts. Judging by what Yhwach was saying, he doesn't seem to view the Kurosaki children as Auswählen survivors, he seems to not have Selected them at all. Not that we can trust anything Yhwach says, but at the moment he's implying that he doesn't view them as Selection candidates or survivors which implies he doesn't view them as Gemischt. Whether that means he doesn't even view them as Quincies or the reason is something else (such as him lying through his teeth) is a good question.
The thing is, Masaki died because she had lost her powers before her fight with Grand Fisher. Katagiri died because she was weak since birth so the sudden power loss killed her. She did die three months after the Auswählen. Uryu is special because he had managed to keep his power despite it. The fact that Karin is spiritually aware doesn't mean anything. Masaki also had to be in order to be able fight Grand Fisher. It's not like she knew at the time that she no longer had her powers. For all we know, both Yuzu and Karin had lost their potential Quincy powers back when they were kids. Doesn't change the fact that Karin could still be spiritually aware. Doesn't really make much sense in Ichigo's case, though, but like Uryu, it could be a reason why Yhwach is interested in him.
We don't know when in the fight she lost her powers. She's shown charging right in, arm raised, and that's all we know. The Katagiri thing doesn't make sense because Isshin claims it was because she was weak from birth, but never clarifies what that actually means and implies Masaki would have lived if she'd been depowered outside a fight. However, Yhwach claims it's impossible to survive the Auswählen at all, so Katagiri being weak and Masaki being in a fight are irrelevant, they'd have died anyway, according to Yhwach's version. The two versions don't add up. Also, Yhwach stated Uryuu is the only survivor and that he's the only Gemischt to have survived. If Yhwach cared about any of the Kurosaki children on the grounds of surviving the Auswählen, him claiming Uryuu is the only survivor or the only Gemischt survivor also doesn't add up.
So wait, according to Urahara and Mayuri, Hollow as a being is a complete antithesis to Quincy, so much that not only Quincy cannot be hollowified EVER, their souls are guaranteed to blow up if infected with Hollow energy (no wonder Masaki getting hollowified was such a BIG issue; even if Urahara didn't help her, she would either become a hollow because Aizen's White is an unnatural hollow, or explode from hollowification). But we remember that Souken Ishida, Uryu's granddad, was killed by hollows, and that the Soul Reapers arrived late to pick his corpse up. How did his remains manage to survive long enough to become Mayuri's experiment subject if a hollowified Quincy is the most unstable thing ever?
As seen with Masaki, Hollow infection doesn't kill a Quincy instantly - Urahara took his time for a long-ass explanation about how Hollowfication works. And since Mayuri knew about Quincies' vulnerability to Hollows, he probably had a means to treat Souken's soul, else he would've lost a rare test subject.
A much bigger headscratcher is how Quilge Opie was able to absorb Ayon, a Hollow construct, and not suffer from it.
On that note, how the hell can Arrancar, like Ebern, use Quincy powers? if Hollow powers are negative for Quincies, how does it work the other way around?
Aizen becoming immortal at the end of his fight with Ichigo makes a lot more sense now that Komamura's become immortal by a similar method, removing his heart and regaining a human form, which Aizen basically did by becoming a Soul Reaper/Hollow hybrid and then returning to being just a soul reaper. It also explains why the Central 46 were claiming that they could execute him if they still had the Sokyoku, they've used it before to kill immortals from Komamura's clan.