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Bleach Vol. 50 – Story & Art by Tite Kubo (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

October 24, 2012 by  



He may have lost all his Soul Reaper powers, but with the aid of Chad and a few others, Ichigo Kurosaki may find a way to get back his power.  But first, he must go through major training in order for it to happen.  Longtime “Bleach” fans will enjoy this storyline…full of action, humor and another manga volume that is entertaining!  “Bleach” vol. 50 is recommended!

© 2001 Tite Kubo. All Rights Reserved.

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MANGA TITLE: Bleach Vol. 50

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: November 6, 2012

Ichigo’s return to an ordinary life is disrupted by a mysterious man named Kugo Ginjo. But what are Ginjo’s true motives? And when a friend is attacked, Ichigo discovers he may have a chance to regain his lost Soul Reaper powers.

17 months after the battle with Aizen. 17 months since Ichigo Kurosaki used “Final Getsuga Tensho” move and losing all his Soul Reaper powers.

In the last 17 months Ichigo has been taking part in school athletics, working at a part time job. Meanwhile, losing his powers has also kept him distant from his family and friends.

No powers, unable to feel the hollow’s spiritual energy, Ichigo Kurosaki feels that he is no use to anyone anymore.

But in volume 49, Ichigo meets a mysterious individual named Ginjo, who wanted to meet with him.  And when Ichigo arrives, not only is Ginjo with a few other people, but also Chad is there as well.

In volume 50 of Tite Kubo’s “Bleach”, Ichigo finds out that Ginjo and the others were people who’s parents were attacked by hollows before they were born.  Remnants of the hollows powers were left on the mothers and were incorporated into their unborn child.

Knowing that Ichigo is like them, but wants his powers back, each of these individuals are willing to have their powers removed in order to give them to Ichigo.

Even Chad is willing to give up his power for his friend.

But in order to do that, he must go through training to prove he is ready to obtain this new power.

Meanwhile, Orihime senses a disturbance and it appears she may confront the person who nearly killed Uryu Ishida.  But will she have enough power to defend herself and fight back?

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 descendant of a hollow hunting group known as the Quincy and are enemies of the Soul Reapers.

As their adventures have continued, we have seen Ichigo and his friends getting stronger, developing new abilities and taking on their most difficult foes yet, the Arrancars including the traitor Soul Reaper, Aizen.

The Current Storyline

But for this current storyline, Ichigo has lost his power. While his friends continue to fight against the Hollows, including his sister Karin who has developed the power to see and fight Hollows, 17-months later and Ichigo is still down in the dumps. Feeling that the loss of power, he can’t do greater things to help the world like he used too. He also misses seeing his friends from the Soul Society and all he can do is participate in school activities and go to work.

But there is someone keeping his eye out for Ichigo and even Orihime senses that he is being followed. As does Uryu, and when he goes towards Ichigo’s home, Uryu sees someone running with unbelievable speed. And the person is not a Soul Reaper.

And by the time Uryu goes to catch him, the assailant injures him.  What is going on and who are these people with special abilities and who is following Ichigo?

Volume 50 features Kugo Ginjo, the leader of a club of people who were born with hollow powers like Ichigo.  Members include Riruka Dokugamine, Giriko Kutsuzawa and also Chad Yasutora.  Four people who are willing to have all their power removed and have it transferred to Ichigo Kurosaki.

But there is one person out there who is trying to make sure it doesn’t happen, and this individual is striking out on Ichigo’s friends.

It’s pretty much a given that there is no way “Bleach” would continue to have a powerless Ichigo Kurosaki.

But it does make a good diversion after so many issues that dealt with the Arrancar, it’s good to bring things back to perspective to the human world and also explore another side of Ichigo Kurosaki that we have never seen for a long time.  A more vulnerable Ichigo.  But also exploring a storyline of what if there were other people like him.

With the 50th volume of “Bleach”, the storyline explores Ichigo’s training in order to get strong enough to know how to use his ability that he was born with, but never knew about.

We also get to see the true bond of friendship between Ichigo and Chad, but also a potential mysterious story that may explain more about Ichigo’s father Isshin.  And also a confrontation between Orihime and this arc’s latest antagonist.  And can it be… Has Ichigo received some sort of contact from Rukia?

There are a lot of things that were introduced in volume 50, but with no answers just yet.  But if anything, we do know that Ichigo is going to have go through major training once again in order to obtain this new power.

Can he do it?

As always, the artwork by Tite Kubo is fantastic.  I love how the characters were drawn and also to see these newer characters being integrated to an all new storyline.  Ichigo vs. a tall teddy bear?  Believe it!  You’ll see this and a lot of other interesting action-based battles in volume 50 of “Bleach.

If you are a “Bleach” fan, while volume 50 is not as intense as previous volumes during the “Arrancar Saga”, still…entertaining and action-packed and fans should be pleased.

“Bleach” vol. 50 is recommended!

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