Bleach 539 Review – “Prob-less, Progress”
Written by: ClayDragon
In which more questions are raised than answered.
This chapter starts in the ruins of the Squad 12 headquarters, as Akon arrives after recovering from his injuries. He’s greeted by an unnamed female researcher, and they discuss how Captain Kurotsuchi has been in his room with Nemu ever since the Quincies attacked. Akon realises that all the security cameras have been deactivated, and surmises that the Captain must be doing something in his room that he doesn’t want anyone to see. Using a secret camera he set up in Kurotsuchi’s room, Akon and the female researcher witness the Captain standing over what appears to be an operating table, with a dark shape lying on it. Sadly, we don’t actually get to see what he was doing.
|Maybe he's just scared, ever thought of that?|
The scene shifts to Marechiyo’s house, where he is being pestered by his little sister. His brother appears (honestly, the less said about him the better), and the two leave Marechiyo alone as he wonders why Suì-Fēng didn’t take him with her when she went training. We then see a random three panels of her training, before moving back to the cave with Komamura and the massive dog (who turns out not to be Komamura’s father, but his great-grandfather). Whilst Komamura wants to inherit the family secrets, his great-grandfather wants to lay low and wait for the world to change. He is also angry at his great-grandson for hiding his face amongst the humans, and states that if Komamura intends to disrupt his peace, then he’ll have to crush him. Komamura decides to stand up and accept his challenge.
|The less we know about this "icky" literature, the better.|
In what looks like an abandoned shack, the entrance to what looks like a water slide can be seen. Faint sounds are coming from it, and it’s revealed that they are caused by Ichigo screaming as he slides into a pool of water along with Ouetsu and his Asauchi. As he gets to his feet, Ichigo is told by Ouetsu (who, as it turns out, shoved Ichigo down the slide) that they need all the water in the cave in order to restore Ichigo’s Zanpakuto. However, it transpires that Ichigo will have to say goodbye to Zangetsu.
|"Can we do that again?"|
Whilst this chapter showed us more of what’s happening in the Soul Society, only the sections involving Kurotsuchi and Ichigo seemed to advance the plot. The part at Marechiyo’s house seemed unnecessary, and Komamura’s section seems to be gearing up towards a pointless fight.
Going by the few clues presented in this chapter, it appears that Kurotsuchi has created some form of life, as he is heard asking something if it can move. Either he has created some sort of artificial life form that can help in the war against the Quincies, or he’s been able to heal or bring back a casualty of the first skirmish. Whatever it is, it’s enough to shock Akon, who generally never loses his cool.
|Seriously, have they never heard of a CCTV camera?|
When Ichigo is told that he’d have to say farewell to Zangetsu, I very much doubt it’s going to be a permanent goodbye. Zangetsu was an integral part of many of Ichigo’s battles, as well as causing him to undergo some amount of character development. It seems strange that Tite Kubo would choose to get rid of Zangetsu for a newer model of Zanpakuto.
Apart from two interesting segments, this chapter seemed more like padding than anything else. It’s a shame, as the two interesting plot points could have easily been given more pages.
Good Things: Kurotsuchi's (probably morally ambiguous) experiment.
The reforging of Ichigo's Bankai is getting closer.
Bad Things: Two random filler sections.
Potential of pointless fight between Komamura and great-granddaddy.
Marechiyo's brother. Just......Marechiyo's brother.
Manga Rating: 3/5
ClayDragon is currently studying Physics at university, and is constantly bewildered by it. The main method of contacting him is his Gmail account at email@example.com. The alternative is his Skype account at kyleroulston1993. When not playing games or reading, he can be found with his head in his hands whilst trying in vain to understand quantum physics.