After coming out of a tough battle in the previous volume, Ichigo is immediately faced with another one. Meanwhile, Renji and Uryû still have a fight on their hands as well.
There are a total of nine chapters in volume 33 of Bleach, starting with number two hundred and eighty-seven and working its way up to two hundred and ninety-five.
Ichigo’s mission to rescue his friend Orihime from the Hollow world has turned into a struggle for survival against a succession of enemies, each one more powerful than the next. Now another vicious challenger has entered the fray, one that happens to know the startling truth about Ichigo’s new friend Nel!
We start with chapter 287, ‘Don’t Forget Till You Die’, in which Ichigo prevents Nnoitora from killing Grimmjow. Despite being tired from his previous battle, Ichigo tries to fight against the Espada ranked number 5.
Elsewhere, Uryû and Renji press onward only to encounter Szayelaporro once more.
Szayelaporro uses his Resurreción in chapter 288, ‘THE BAD JOKE’ – it is called La Lujuriosa. He uses a technique that creates clones of Uryû, Renji, Dondochakka and Pesche.
Ichigo’s struggle against Nnoitora continues, whilst Tesla restrains Orihime.
As Nnoitora overwhelms Ichigo in chapter 289, ‘The Scarmask’, Tesla forces Nel out of hiding. Nnoitora reveals that she is Nelliel tu Odelschwank, a former Espada.
Ichigo tries to protect Nel from Nnoitora in chapter 290, ‘Unleash The Beast’. However, no matter how hard Ichigo tries, he is unable to do any harm to the Espada. As things get desperate, Nel reverts to her true form.
Nel tells Ichigo she will repay him for his kindness by fighting Nnoitora in chapter 291, ‘Thank You For Defending Me’. She is able to wound Nnoitora, and even counters the cero he fires.
Tesla rushes to Nnoitora in chapter 292, ‘Rupture My Replica’, leaving Nel, Ichigo and Orihime to regroup – right up until Tesla is sent flying and Nnoitora reveals he can still fight.
Whilst fighting their clones, Uryû is able to spot which ones are fake due to some interesting designs. Renji uses his bankai, and his clones follow suit, resulting in the building around them being collapsed.
Szayelaporro decides to take on Uryû and Renji directly.
Szayelaporro reveals the true power of La Lujuriosa in chapter 293, ‘urge to unite’. He is able to create a doll of anyone caught by it. The said doll contains replicas of internal organs, which Szayelaporro can crush – thus crushing the organ of the affected person.
Nel continues to fight Nnoitora.
Ichigo tries to go help Nel in chapter 294, ‘IF YOU CALL ME A BEAST, I’LL KILL YOU LIKE A TEMPEST’. However, Tesla prevents him from doing so.
There flashbacks through the chapter, showing how Nnoitora caused Nel to turn into a child and lose her memory – all because he hated the idea of losing to her in a duel.
The flashback continues in chapter 295, ‘The Last Mission’, where Dondochakka and Pesche decide that they should protect Nel from everything with their lives.
Szayelaporro crushes Renji’s bones with one of his dolls, but Dondochakka and Pesche take the opportunity to snatch them from him.
As Nel continues to fight Nnoitora, she prepares to use her Resurreción.
This volume of Bleach ends with a character design chart for characters that appear in the anime’s New Captain Shusuke Amagai arc.
I would have to say that Nel is the star of this volume – Ichigo being beaten to a pulp by Nnoitora drives her to return to her less annoying adult form. Her history as an Espada is fairly interesting, though it’s never really adequately explained how having her mask broken forced her to revert to a child.
Szayelaporro’s Resurreción also proves to be a fairly interesting power – it would have been entirely possible for him to kill both Uryû and Renji had he not been playing the role of typical villain.
It was also nice to see Dondochakka and Pesche be willing to fight – they have mostly been comic relief characters up to this point. Who knows how effective they’ll be in combat, but they did manage to stop Szayelaporro from causing any further internal damage to Uryû and Renji.
The Arrancar arc continues on, and things aren’t really so great for the protagonists – victories have been claimed, but they’ve all come at a cost.