In the previous volume of Bleach, we delved into Ichigo’s past and he faced a fearsome foe with a connection to a certain tragic event. In this volume, a spiritualist arrives in Karakura Town to record a TV show. Turns out the spiritualist’s action may have some kind of effect on the spiritual world.
Volume 4 contains 9 chapters. It opens with chapter 26, and finishes up with chapter 34.
A new reality-show craze is sweeping the nation, garnering legions of screaming fans (the majority of them being teenaged girls). But this programme comes with a supernatural twist – the host, a media-savvy spiritualist, travels to local hotspots and performs exorcisms live on national TV! Surly Soul Reaper Ichigo Kurosaki has his doubts about this primetime prima donna, and his assumptions are about to be put to the test – the show is heading straight for his neighbourhood. What effect will this unprovoked media presence have on the fragile balance between Earth and the spirit world? Find out more in the fourth action-packed volume of Tite Kubo’s mega-manga hit Bleach.
Chapter 26, ‘Paradise is Nowhere’ is a chapter that focuses on Kon as he tries to find someone other than Ichigo and Rukia to take him in. Things don’t work out well for him…
‘Spirits AREN’T Always With Us’, or that’s what the title of chapter 27 would have us believe. This is where the spiritualist mentioned in the blurb is introduced – his name is Don Kanonji, and Ichigo can’t stand him.
Don Kanonji announces he’ll be visiting an abandoned hospital in Karakura Town. All of Ichigo’s friends seem to be excited about the upcoming event. Ichigo is less keen, but ends up at the hospital anyway.
A ghost is bound to the hospital, and the film crew setting foot on the property brings it out of hiding.
Chapter 28 is ‘Symptom of Synesthesia’. As the film crew sets to work, a few of the people gathered there can hear a scream; more specifically the people who can hear it besides Ichigo and Rukia are Chad, Karin, Tatsuki and Orihime.
Rukia surmises that the bound ghost is in the process of becoming a Hollow. When they see the ghost, he has an incomplete Hollow hole. As long as nobody interferes with the hole, it’ll be safe.
Don Kanonji then makes his entrance and then shoves his cane into the ghost’s Hollow hole.
‘Stop That, Stupid!!’ is the title of chapter 29. Ichigo and Rukia try to get close to Don Kanonji to stop him, but the security quickly put a halt to that. The sudden arrival of Kisuke allows Ichigo to take on his Soul Reaper form. Rukia and Kisuke make a quick escape from the security guards whilst Ichigo tries to stop Don Kanonji.
The bound ghost seems to disappear.
Chapter 30 is ‘Second Contact (it was beyond the scope of our understanding)’. Turns out a when a Whole turns into a Hollow it vaporises and recomposes in a new location; in this instance, above Ichigo and Don Kanonji. Ichigo and Kanonji form an unlikely alliance to fight the Hollow.
Some of the people gathered at the hospital are able to see Ichigo in his Soul Reaper form as well as the Hollow.
‘HEROES CAN SAVE YOU’ is the title of chapter 31. Don Kanonji explains to Ichigo that he simply cannot run, as he is viewed as a hero and he doesn’t want to let his viewers down. The battle ends up moving inside the hospital, though Ichigo’s huge sword is a liability in a tiny corridor. Kanonji steps up to protect Ichigo when he is unable to move.
The title of chapter 32 isn’t very sure of itself: ‘A Hero is Always With Me?’. Don Kanonji pulls out a technique that allows Ichigo to free his blade from the ceiling, and thus finish the fight with the Hollow.
Once the battle is over, Kanonji learns just what a Hollow is.
‘ROCKIN’ FUTURE 7′ is the title of chapter 33 and it begins with Ichigo and his classmates being scolded by the teachers of his school after previous events were shown on TV. All of the students make a rapid getaway.
Some time later, Don Kanonji makes an unannounced visit to Kurosaki clinic – fortunately a Hollow appearance means Ichigo doesn’t have to deal with him for long. Whilst Ichigo and Rukia rush to the scene, they pass by a bespectacled young man.
Volume 4’s final chapter is 34, which is called ‘Quincy Archer Hates You’. Despite receiving alarms about Hollows appearing, they seemed to have disappeared by the time Ichigo and Rukia are able to get to the scene.
After a couple of false alarms in one day, Uryū Ishida appears before the two of them and is able to detect a Hollow appearing before an alarm comes in. He shoots it down using a bow and arrow, and then introduces himself as a Quincy. Oh, and he also hates Soul Reapers.
Only one character profile at the end of this volume, and that’s for Kon. He has two theme songs listed: ‘Tanaka-san, Nichiyo Dance’ by Kuki Kodan and ‘Bushman’ by Rip Slyme.
Whilst Don Kanonji and Ichigo have most of the focus in this volume, this shows that Ichigo’s friends are continuing to become more attuned to the spirit world.
Don Kanonji is a silly character, though the whole thing about being a hero shows that his heart is in the right place.
Another new character making their official debut here is Uryū Ishida. He actually puts in several brief appearances in crowds before introducing himself to Ichigo and Rukia.
Uryū’s animosity towards Soul Reapers will be explored in the next volume. There’ll also be a competition between Soul Reaper and Quincy, and a couple of Ichigo’s friend will discover new abilities.