Comic Book Spotlight: Bleach Vol. 71 – October 2017 (Viz Media)

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TITLE: Bleach vol. 71

YEAR: October 2017 (USA Release)

COMPANY: Viz Media

Story & Art by Tite Kubo

In this latest volume, the battle between Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi and Pernida Parnkgjas continues.

Meanwhile, Captain Shunsui Kyoraku takes on Lille Barro.

Find out what happens in Tite Kubo’s action-packed volume 71 of “Bleach”!

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 but also earning the respect of his friends and the Soul Society, having saved their lives time and time again. But this time around, there comes a new enemy that may be so powerful that Ichigo may not be able to take them on…

Enter the Vandenreich!

The Current Storyline

We have only heard of how the Quincies had perished after a long feud with the Soul Reapers. The Soul Reapers which believed in having the soul of a hollow crossover to the Soul Society, while the Quincies believed in the total destruction of the hollow’s soul. And while the two had tried to work out their dispute, in the end, it let do a war in which the Soul Reapers vanquished the Quincies.

With only Uryu Ishida thought to be the last Quincy alive, in volume 55 of “Bleach”, it was revealed that one of the deadly Quincy’s from the past, Yhwach, was not killed and has assembled a group known as the Vandenreich to eliminate all Soul Reapers and destroy the Soul Society.

Many have gone missing in Karakura Town and while the Vandenreich have made their presence known to Captain Yamamoto by killing 1st Division Lt. Sasakibe. Also, Hueco Mundo Arrancars have been attacked by the Hueco Mundo Army led by Quilge Opie who are trying to force the Arrancars to join them or else be killed.

As Nel goes to the human world to beg for Ichigo to save Hueco Mundo, Ichigo, Kisuke Urahara, Chad and Orihime hurry to Hueco Mundo to see what is happening. And with the distraction caused in that area, Yhwach orders the Vandenreich to attack the Soul Reapers in their home area inside the Seiretei and the top Quincy combatants of the Vandenreich, the Stern Ritter continues their destruction by trying to kill all Soul Reaper captains.

And the battle continues as Mayuri Kurotsuchi (with assistant Nemu Kurotsuchi) take on Pernida Parnkgjas, while Shunsui Kyoraku takes on Lille Barro and we finally learn the truth of Soul Reaper Nanao Ise!


So, with this latest 71st volume of “Bleach”, these battles between the Soul Reapers and Sternritter have continues.

With a total of 74 issues, we are now nearing the end of the series and whether or not you love or hate how Tite Kubo has extended these battles for many volumes and years, everything is now coming to the final volumes.

And in this volume, Mayuri Kurotsuchi takes on Pernida Parnkgjas and the battle concludes with Nemu Kurotsuchi being sacrificed as a final resort against Pernida Parnkgjas and we see how that plays out.  Very fascinating and as always, a fascinating observation to see how Mayuri plans in advance.

We also see Shunsui Kyoraku in the battle of his life, as one of the most powerful captains, he must take on Lille Barro, but how can you beat someone who is literally unkillable?

But the manga volume finally reveals why Shunsui wears that kimono but most importantly, we learn the truth about soul reaper Nanao Ise and her connection with Shunsui.

It’s quite exciting especially to see how these two battles go all out and seeing Mayuri and Shunsui put their lives on the line against their opponents.

And the artwork and action is always well-done by Tite Kubo.  The problem is that for people who were invested in reading the stories of Ichigo Kurosaki, are surprised to find out that long ago that it became less about Ichigo and the volumes focused on the Soul Reapers.  So, you go through many volumes without full-on stories with Ichigo and friends and this one of those volume.   Are they in this volume… yes.  But probably just a 4-5 pages and that’s it.

“Bleach” vol. 71 is an action-packed volume and is more geared to the dedicated readers of “Bleach” who have followed the series for the longest time.  Storylines that will no doubt entertain loyal followers who stuck around with the manga series to find out how the Soul Reapers vs. Sternritter war will eventually end.  While featuring two battles, it’s no doubt an exciting action-packed volume worth reading!

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