With the forty-seventh volume of Bleach, we are almost at the end of the Arrancar arc. It will be nice to share thoughts on other manga series, but I figured I’d get the last couple of volumes of the Arrancar arc out of the way first.
There are nine chapters in this volume of Bleach, which runs from chapter four hundred and five through to four hundred and thirteen.
Aizen’s new powers are too much for even the combined efforts of Ichigo, Isshin, Urahara, and Yoruichi. But as Aizen and Gin head for the real Karakura Town, Ichigo decides to undergo intense training under his father’s tutelage.
Chapter 405, ‘DEICIDE 7’, shows Gin telling Ichigo he has grown weaker and he should just run away.
Whilst that happens, Kisuke, Yoruichi and Isshin launch a joint attack against Aizen.
Aizen compliments Isshin on his attack in chapter 406, ‘DEICIDE 8 end of the Chrysalis Age’.
Ichigo gets momentarily distracted by the explosion, but soon returns his attention back to Gin. Gin says he will kill Ichigo, but Aizen’s arrival bring a halt to that. Aizen and Gin then open a senkaimon to go to the real Karakura Town. Ichigo watches helplessly as Aizen and Gin depart. However, Isshin gets up and says that they will protect Karakura.
Aizen and Gin travel through the Dangai in chapter 407, ‘DEICIDE 9’.
Meanwhile, Isshin is able to get Ichigo to come back to his senses and the two of them pursue Aizen. Inside the Dangai, Isshin says he will teach Ichigo the Final Getsuga Tensho.
Some familiar faces wake up in the real Karakura Town as Aizen approaches.
Ichigo meditates in chapter 408, ‘DEICIDE 10’ in order to unlock the Final Getsuga Tensho. He is only able to do that as time flows differently in the Dangai.
In Karakura Town, Keigo wakes up and goes searching for anybody else. He ends up encountering Tatsuki.
Through his meditation, Ichigo enters his inner world in chapter 409, ‘DEICIDE 11’. He encounters Tensa Zangetsu. Tensa Zangetsu is unwilling to teach Ichigo the Final Getsuga Tensho.
In Karakura Town, Aizen and Gin happen upon Tatsuki.
Ichigo continues to fight Tensa Zangetsu in chapter 410, ‘DEICIDE 12’. Tensa Zangetsu admonishes Ichigo for giving into despair, and pulls out the route of the problem: Ichigo’s inner Hollow.
As Tatsuki and Keigo continue making their way through Karakura Town, they encounter Aizen and Gin. Tatsuki is completely overwhelmed by Aizen, whilst Keigo runs after Tatsuki tells him to.
In order to learn the Final Getsuga Tensho, Ichigo has to fight a fusion of Tensa Zangetsu and his inner Hollow, in chapter 411, ‘DEICIDE 13’.
Don Kanonji turns up in Karakura Town to try and save Tatsuki, even being totally willing to attack Aizen. However, he is stopped by Rangiku.
Rangiku says she’ll stop Aizen and Gin in chapter 412, ‘DEICIDE 14’. She tells Don Kanonji to take Tatsuki somewhere safe, and he complies.
Gin takes Rangiku elsewhere. Rangiku asks why he chose to serve Aizen, but Gin isn’t forthcoming with the answer.
Don Kanonji and Tatsuki wind up finding Keigo, who has acquired himself a sword. Keigo insists that they get out of there, because he can feel Aizen getting closer.
Gin takes off after talking to Rangiku, leaving her on a rooftop.
Keigo takes Tatsuki and Don Kanonji to Mizuiro and Chizuru in chapter 413, ‘DEICIDE 15’. Mizuiro is quite well-prepared, whereas Chizuru is in a panic as she has no idea what is going on. Explanations have to wait, however, as Aizen shows up.
Mizuiro tries a couple things to slow Aizen down, but they have zero effect.
Zennosuke Kurumadani reclaims his zanpaku-tô and uses his shikai, Tsuchimanazu to create a barrier. As you might expect, it utterly fails to stop Aizen’s advance.
The chapter ends with Gin catching up with Aizen.
That’s it for the penultimate volume of the Arrancar arc, and I have to say I really like what takes place in the real Karakura Town. It’s like something out of the horror genre, what with the almighty Aizen pursuing the effectively powerless humans.
Mizuiro does get to demonstrate a bit of creativity, which is neat, but it doesn’t really help much…
And of course, whilst that is happening, Ichigo is training towards unlocking the Final Getsuga Tensho. It seems fairly interesting the way a zanpaku-tô changes during bankai, and Ichigo’s inner Hollow returns again. Seeing Tensa Zangetsu and the inner Hollow become one is quite interesting, particularly as there is still more to learn about both of them – but that can wait until the final arc.
After having so many of the previous volumes filled cover to cover with action, Aizen’s foray into Karakura Town makes for a welcome change of pace. It’s also nice to see Ichigo’s regular human friends again – as in, the ones who don’t have powers.
The next volume is the finale of the Arrancar arc. Of course, I’ll share my thoughts on the volume next time, but I’ll also have a few things to say about the Arrancar arc as a whole. After that, I’ll be taking a break from the Bleach manga for a little while – I still have stuff I picked up at Comic Con that I’m really keen to share my thoughts on.