Score: A-

Zero Squad finally got their chance to shine. And credit to them that they didn’t waste it. There were some nice twists and it let the various characters show off what they could do. It also moved pretty fast with seemingly quite a few of Yhwach’s Royal Guard getting taken down. His mission was mostly accomplished in that he’s one step closer to the Soul King. There’s only one person between him and that goal. Now that guy is given quite a bit of hype with no one having any concern that Yhwach got past them. Osho seems to be quite powerful if that’s the way Zero Squad is going to behave. I guess we’ll see if he can live up to that trust.

Guess we’ll see if he can handle Yhwach

I still wonder about the tactical choices made by the Zero Squad here. They are banking a lot on this fight. Even with Aizen they didn’t dare open the front door to let him get this close. But they are confident enough that they can handle Yhwach? Why even take that risk? Things were a bit messy on the ground, but Ichigo was down there. Why train him, Rukia, Renji, and Byakuya (well healed him) if they were just going to let Yhwach come visit anyways? Are they banking on Ichigo making it back up to where they are to further cement their advantage? I can’t imagine that’s the case. They must think it’s possible to win this fight. But they are risking the entity they are there to protect based solely on that confidence.

Interesting look at the past here…

The flashback at the start was certainly interesting. It revealed quite a bit. Now Yhwach has thrown around familial relations a bit liberally in this series, but can presume there is some direct connection between him and the Soul King. Enough for Osho to try negotiating with the Quincy directly before they made their failed assault on Soul Society in the past. The whole “eyes” thing seems like an important detail. It was something we saw momentarily during Ichigo’s training. An interesting point is that Osho seemed to have taken that away from Yhwach. But he also said that Yhwach’s eyes would never open until the day he died. I guess the question is whether his fall and recovery counts as having died and coming back from that? It’s still interesting that Yhwach and Osho had a connection from well in the past.

Stole the episode at times!

There was a great sense of twists to this episode. Just when one side seemed to have the advantage the rug was pulled out from under them. I guess we’ll find out if that will remain the case next week with Osho seeming fairly confident while facing Yhwach. Regardless, it was pretty fun seeing the two sides starting to show off what they could do. I was mentally preparing to rip into the Zero Squad for their arrogance of just sending one person to face off against a threat on the level of Yhwach. But thankfully they weren’t being that cocky! There was actually a plan in place! And certainly, I don’t disagree with the general idea of containing Yhwach and his forces and fighting them in a field prepared for that. Everyone mostly contributed. Well, everyone besides Tenjiro who mostly was just acting cool.

The winner though was obviously Oh-Etsu. This guy got to absolutely carve his way through the Royal Guard without much trouble. That sword is ridiculous of course. He made something so sharp he can’t put it in a sheath and must carry it around in a tank. No one was even slowing this guy down. The best one opponent could manage was trying to dive backwards to avoid a fatal strike…which didn’t work all that well since Oh-Etsu seems to be the type that makes sure to finish his opponents. Curious to see how things play out from here since having the Quincy Royal Guard wiped out moments after their introduction would certainly be a bold choice.

She has presence

Credit to Shutara who was basically the face of the Zero Squad until their trap was sprung. So many feints and tricks at play, but she certainly kept attention locked in on her. Good bit of taunting towards Yhwach and got to show off a few of her tricks. Not someone you want to underestimate. And being voiced by Rina Satou doesn’t hurt anything either! Really brought out some sultry tones and made sure she was drawing all sorts of attention whenever she was on screen. Something that works great considering her purpose was to keep the Quincy from noticing the trap being sprung.

Pause button hit on this fight

One thing I didn’t love about this episode though was how it had to leave some things hanging. The Renji and Rukia fight against Bazz-B really hasn’t gotten started. And there’s quite a bit that really needs to be tackled and I’m not sure it will fit into the season finale next week. Even if that one has two episodes! I really would have loved some kind of resolution to the whole zombie thing. It’s nice that the Soul Reapers technically won that confrontation. But right now they still have 3 captains that are basically zombie lackeys underneath of Mayuri. I don’t think that’s a good thing or something that should be a status quo for very long! But what are the odds that will get resolved anytime soon?

Biggest change since the flashback is that mustache

This was a pretty good episode overall. I’m glad that Ichigo and company are on their way and that they should arrive before the season finale. They are even bringing Ganju along. I guess because there is some nice nostalgia in gathering most of the “Rukia rescue squad” together. It’ll be nice if this will give Yoruichi her first chance to get into a fight in a while. There’s some good tension since Ishida hasn’t gotten a chance to show what he can do yet either and that might come early next episode since there aren’t many left to face off against the Zero Squad. I guess we might get some insight into what Ishida is thinking here. For now though, I’m excited to see how the next episode plays out.

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An older member at 25, yet a new addition to Anime Evo. Recently graduating University and in the difficult point between school and a true career. Anime being a salvation and blogging a good way to put all those hours of writing essays to some use. Enjoys talking about series, yet not taking on so many that the quality dips. A Canadian who enjoys his anime and hearing what others think about the series he enjoys watching.

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