Book Review: Bleach, Vol 69 by Tite Kubo

Bleach, Vol 69   

Author: Tite Kubo

Publisher: Viz Media

American release date: March 7, 2017

Format/Genre/Length: Paperback/Manga/Supernatural/192 pages

Overall Personal Rating: ★★★★★

Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes


Kurotsuchi explains to some of the horrified Captains why Aizen can’t do what he threatens, namely shoot down Reiokyu.  Unfortunately, some of the Quincies choose that moment to arrive. While Shunsui hopes they have come to help, the truth is quite the opposite. Looks like a fight is going to happen. But that is interrupted by the arrival of Bazz-B and two girls. Seems that the Bazz is willing to help the Soul Reapers, being rather angry at Yhwach for abandoning them. Besides the desire to kill Yhwach, Bazz has a beef with Ichigo as well.

Ichigo et al need to figure out how to get to Reiokyu again, but help arrives from an unexpected source – Grimmjow! Whodathunkit?  And right behind him is the adult Nel! Apparently Uruhara has made something for her that allows her to switch between her child and adult forms whenever she wants.  A box unexpectedly appears, heralding the arrival of Yukio and Riruka. When Ichigo questions Grimmjow on his motives for helping, he claims that if Hueco Mundo were to disappear, he’d have nowhere to kill Ichigo. Sounds legit.

Yhwach has taken down Reio and now he’s ready to reinvent his nation, rebuilding the Royal Palace to resemble his own. The Court Guard Captains are confused, but Shunsui realizes that this is a testament to the strength of their foe. Yhwach tells his followers that the castle will be the foundation for the new world, Wahr Welt (castle of true world). The Captains move to attack, but Kurotsuchi isn’t with them. As always, he marches to the beat of his own drummer. But he is surprised to find Kenpachi has anticipated his move and followed him.

Once Yhwach gives his orders, Haschwalth gives one of his own – that Uryu be followed, to make sure he does nothing that goes against His Majesty’s plans. Apparently there is a lack of trust there. Haschwalth is surprised to see Bazz B, having assumed he was with the ones who didn’t survive. Bazz doesn’t hesitate to tell Jugo just how angry he is, despite their long history together.

Some interesting things going on here, including the backstory of Bazz and Jugo, and how Jugo came to be Yhwach’s second-in-command. We can see a certain dissension in the Quincy ranks. Will this become advantageous to our heroes at some point? Clearly someone doesn’t trust Uryu, but is that suspicion justified? I thought I caught a glimpse of something like dismay with Uryu, and I am still of the opinion that he will do right in the end, regardless of appearances right now.

Everyone is getting into position. What purpose will Aizen serve? He is doing his best to escape. I’d say good luck to that, but we all know from experience that this man is dangerous, even as hamstrung as he currently is. Don’t underestimate him.  I feel the ultimate battle will be between Ichigo and Yhwach, but everyone has a part to play. Good volume, only five more left!

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