By Volume 71 and in the final story, Kubo is using these these minor arcs to give us more backstory of the main characters. Completing the Kurotsuchi and Nemo story as they continue their battle and then on to former 8th Division captain and now commander Kyoraku Shunsui’s and squad vice captain Nanao’s turn.
Story: Nemu has sacrificed herself for her captain and Kurotsuchi can only watch as her flesh is devoured. But Nemu’s physique has a secret that will change the tide of battle. Meanwhile, a flawless sniper is keeping Kyoraku and his group on the run. But he’s tired of the game and turns to battle – only to find there is much more to the sniper. Can his own Bankai and squad vice captain Nanao save him in time?
In this volume, we get Kyoraku’s backstory – why he wears a woman’s kimono and hairpin and how it relates to Nanao. We also get his very capricious Bankai Sakuranosuke – and its female representative Ohana. They are an interesting couple, captain and sword, considering neither can figure out how they were paired together since they have such different temperaments. And yet, they make perfect sense as well.
We are also given a glimpse of Nanao now that she finally has the sword that has been kept by Kyoraku for safe keeping. We’ll get more about her bladeless, mirrored sword and its very unique powers in the next volume. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.