Bleach 61 begins the final battle for control of Soul Society. What seems to start as an advantage on the part of the captains (training anew after their bankais were stolen) soon turns to a disaster as they realize the SternRitter have carefully planned this assault. Aizen’s plans now seem like child’s play in comparison.
Story: Ichigo has come to terms with the truth about Zangetsu. But he’s also gained access to his full powers and it is clear he is going to need them. The SternRitter invade and the situation in Soul Society soon turns critical. Meanwhile, Ichigo’s human friends are visited by Shunsui – telling them to say goodbye to Ichigo.
Bleach 61 begins the Quincy salvo as 3 captains are attacked: Soi Fon, Hitsugaya, and Mayuri. Tite Kubo stays true to the captains personalities in each of the battles: Soi Fon is assured, Hitsugaya is cool, and Mayuri detached. In what seems like easy defeats using bankai alternates (Soi Fon’s Shunko, Hitsugaya’s improved manipulation of ice, and Mayuri’s preplanning), it soon becomes obvious that the enemy won’t be so easily defeated.
As a nice benefit, we get glimpses of nearly all the previous characters here in the moments before/at the beginning of the battle. It looks like everyone is going to have a part to play in the battle and it will be interesting to see where Kubo takes it.
Reviewed from an ARC.