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Bleach Vol. 47 – Story & Art by Tite Kubo (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

October 9, 2012 by  



With one more volume left in the Arrancar arc, volume 47 is the setting things up for the battle that “Bleach” fans have been waiting for.   Plenty of action and things really get chaotic with this latest volume as Aizen and Gin now move from defeating Soul Reapers to killing humans in Karakura Town.  And they must be stopped!  But this is the volume leading to next volume’s arc finale,  Ichigo Kurosaki vs. Aizen.  A must-read volume if you are a “Bleach” and Ichigo fan!  Highly recommended!

© 2001 Tite Kubo. All Rights Reserved.

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MANGA TITLE: Bleach Vol. 47

STORY AND ART BY: Tite Kubo (久保 宣章)

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: October 2, 2012

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.

Ichigo has just found out that his father, Isshin Kurosaki, is a shinigami and possibly was a former Captain in the Soul Society.  But now is not the time to ask questions as Aizen is dead set in destroying them.

Fortunately, Urahara and Yoruichi have arrived in time to assist Isshin in taking on Aizen who has turned to some unknown form.  But on Aizen’s side, Gin Ichimaru has also arrived to take on Ichigo Kurosaki.

But do they have any chance in defeating the powerful Aizen or Gin?

What is “Bleach?”

For those who are not so familiar with “Bleach”, “Bleach” has a strong fan following and since its run began back in 2001, series creator, writer and illustrator Noriaki “Tite” Kubo has been hard at work, continuing to crank chapter after chapter for Weekly Shonen Jump in Japan and with the success of the series extending out to films, OVA’s, feature films and video games and other merchandise.

Because of its airing on the Cartoon Network and it being featured on Shonen Jump magazine, “Bleach” has gone on to become a fan favorite in America but also fans all over the world.

A Brief History of what “Bleach” is about

“Bleach” is a story about a guy named Ichigo Kurasaki who has a gift in which he can see spirits. One day, he saw a Soul Reaper (one who can govern the flow of souls between the human world and the afterlife) named Rukia Kukichiki who has come to find a Hollow (a lost soul). She ends up being wounded in battle when she tried to defend Ichigo and so she illegally transfers her reiatsu (spiritual pressure) to him, so that he can defeat the Hollow. But during the process, he nearly takes all of her energy and becomes a Soul Reaper himself and defeats the Hollow quite easily. So, the first storyline arc features Rukia now powerless stranded in the human world until she has the time to recover her true powers, while Ichigo fills in and battles Hollows in her place. And with each fight, Rukia starts to notice something special about Ichigo’s abilities.

The second storyline arc of “Bleach” features the Soul Society wanting to sentence Rukia to death for transferring her powers to Ichigo. His friends also begin to develop special abilities. His childhood friend, Orihime Inoue, is given special abilities courtesy of her loving brother who has turned into a Hollow. Yasutora “Chad” Sato is Ichigo’s tall friend (who is half Japanese/half Mexican) who suddenly becomes aware of spirits and develops an ability to have a special armored right arm that has special abilities. And Ichigo’s rival/friend, Uryu Ishida, who is a desendant of a hollow hunting group known as the Quincy and are enemies of the Soul Reapers.

Through various chapters, the Soul Reapers learn that one of their own, Sosuke Aizen, is a traitor. It was learned that Aizen has been creating Visoreds, Soul Reapers who have obtained hollow powers (Hollowfication) and are known for their hollow masks (which look like skulls on a human’s face) and Arrancars, a stronger form of hollow which has acquired human form.

It is learned that Ichigo has a Visored that is manifesting within him that has great power. During a fight, this visored tries to take over Ichigo’s body but Ichigo is trying his best to control it and using this power wisely.

Together, Ichigo and his friends continue to increase and enhance their abilities overtime and to take on tough enemies which leads us to the Visored/Arrancar arc.

The Current Storyline

Ichigo and friends are now on a mission to stop the traitorous soul reaper, Sosuke Aizen who along with his army of Arrancars are preparing their plan to destroy the Soul Society and wiping out Karakura Town. Meanwhile, in order to protect Ichigo and her friends, Orihime willingly stays with Aizen’s group but Ichigo and friends will do all they can to save her. Meanwhile, the Thirteen Court Guard Companies head to Karakura.

In volume 38 & 39, the Soul Reapers go into battle against the Arrancars, and there are casualties on both sides.

In “Bleach” vol. 40, it is now Ichigo Kurosaki’s turn to take on an Arrancar, the deadly Ulquiorra Cifer. A powerful Arrancar with a second stage, not many know of the extent of his true power but Ulquiorra will do whatever he can to destroy Ichigo. But no matter what happens, Ichigo is determined to never give up.

In the last chapter of vol. 40, the fighting between Ichigo and Ulquiorra has been one-sided. Ulquiorra is too powerful of a being. As Uryu tried fighting Ulquiorra to protect Ichigo and Orihime, Uryu paid the price by losing his hand. And now, as Ulquiorra shows his vicious side and having blasted a hole through Ichigo, Ichigo should be dead.

But that is not the case, a new type of hollow has emerged from Ichigo Kurosaki, and this time, he’s more powerful than ever! For volume 41, the battle between Ichigo vs. Ulquiorra has concluded!

In volume 42-45, the Soul Reapers take on the remaining Espadas to a fight for the death.

In volume 46 of “Bleach”, as Aizen reveals to Ichigo that he is responsible for awakening his spiritual power and that he pulled the strings for the first encounter with Rukia to having a hand in everything that has made him a powerful soul reaper today. And as Aizen is shown to be super powerful, out of nowhere comes Ichigo’s father, Isshin who reveals himself to be a skilled shinigami and possible former Soul Reaper.

In volume 47, this leads to a battle between Aizen vs. Isshin and Ichigo vs. Gin. With Aizen now showing his new form and power, Isshin mus take on Aizen while Ichigo must take on Gin Ichimaru.  Fortunately, Urahara and Yoruichi have shown up in time to lend them a hand.

But it appears that perhaps Aizen may be too powerful for them and right now, his main priority is to destroy Karakura Town.  Can any of them prevent Aizen from doing so?

Perhaps Aizen is much too powerful for Ichigo, Isshin, Urahara and Yoruichi to take on.  Especially Gin Ichimaru.  With Aizen showing his true power, the battle is quick and short and now for Aizen and Gin, their next step is to destroy Karakura Town, the home of Ichigo and Isshin Kurosaki, where their family and friends live.

As Ichigo’s friends try to help each other and run away from Aizen, who’s power literally absorbs and kills anyone that goes near him, Rangiku Matsumoto who was near death, musters his remaining energy to stop Gin Ichimaru from killing anymore people.

But with Aizen being way too powerful, there is only one option that the Kurosaki’s have in defeating him and that’s for Isshin to teach his son the forbidden technique, The Final Getsuga Tensho.  And in order to do that, the two must enter the Dangai, a disconnected space surround by a torrent of layers and layers of time.  For every year in the real world, two thousand years have elapsed in Dangai.  In other words, if Ichio is trained for 2,000 hours in Dangai, only an hour would pass in the real world.

And now he must confront his bankai, Tensa Zangetsu in hopes that he would be taught this forbidden technique.

Needless to say, volume 47 of “Bleach” is another exciting action-packed volume as we see how powerful Aizen truly is, but this time around, we see Ichigo’s high school friends in major trouble and everyone he knows and cares about being threatened.

But what is most interesting is seeing Ichigo confront his bankai in hopes to gain more power.  How much powerful will Ichigo get?  That’s unknown for now but this volume does feel like it came out of the “Dragon Ball Z” series.  As Goku, Gohan, Vegeta, Trunks and Piccolo trained in a special area where time is much different than reality, what is a day in the outside world is a full year.  In the case of “Bleach”, 20,000 hours in dangai is one full hour in the real world and with that amount of time for training, one can only wonder how powerful he will get and will eventually become.

But the question is… is it enough to defeat Aizen?

As always, the artwork by Tite Kubo is fantastic but for those who prefer more story versus all-action. The story will appeal to action fans, as each page focuses on visual battles and the use of special abilities. Because of that, the story does go quickly and one will be able to finish this volume quickly because each page is action-driven and with only a few word bubbles, possibly a few seconds to read each page. But to see how this battle unfolds, I was shocked and in awe. You may not have much to read but just the visuals alone is enough to show the reader how chaotic things have become.

With one more volume left in the Arrancar arc, volume 47 is the setting things up for the battle that “Bleach” fans have been waiting for.   Plenty of action and things really get chaotic with this latest volume as Aizen and Gin now move from defeating Soul Reapers to killing humans in Karakura Town.  And they must be stopped!  But this is the volume leading to next volume’s arc finale,  Ichigo Kurosaki vs. Aizen.  A must-read volume if you are a “Bleach” and Ichigo fan!  Highly recommended!

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