There's nothing quite like a big showdown between Soul Reapers and baddies, but when Ichigo and his human buddies are caught in the fray, you can bet that the sparks will fly, and fly they do in the latest episodes of Bleach released today. Plus we get some interesting back story on Renji, Ikkaku, Yumichika and Kenpachi in the process (ah, the good old days of Squad 13), and when the Soul Reapers' full spiritual pressures are released, well, it's quite a sight. Check out these episodes (and everything up to now) in the Bleach section.
Ikkaku and the Arrancar, Edrad, have a fierce battle in the streets of Karakura Town. Yumichika stands aside and watches because he knows that Ikkaku will be furious if he interferes.
Ikkaku releases his Bankai, Ryumon Hozukimaru, which he has kept a secret for some time. He clashes with Edrad, who shows his true power by releasing his zanpakuto.
The Soul Reapers struggle against the might of the Arrancars. Despite the Arrancar Shawlong’s overwhelming strength, Captain Hitsugaya continues his attacks.
The Soul Reapers receive permission from the Soul Society to use Gentei Kaijo, a spiritual pressure restriction release. Soul Reaper Captains and Lieutenants have their spiritual pressure limited when they leave the Soul Society so as not to affect the spirits of the World of the Living unnecessarily.
This week's Prince of Tennis episodes might win the prize for best episode titles so far. "Penal-Tea"? Genius. First, Ryoma gets roped into giving a tennis lesson to Sakuno but, as per usual, ends up defending her honor against a bunch of tennis toughs from Ginka -- nothing a well-aimed ball to the face can't cure! And as fate would have it, Ryoma catches the eye of Akutsu, the resident thug of Yamabuki Junior High, who also happens to be Tamabuki's best tennis player... With a matchup between Yamabuki and Seigaku looming, things are bound to get out of control...
Lest you think that things are completely serious this week, we also get treated to the sight of Taka hanging out with a beautiful girl...? (gulp) And then of course there's Inui's devastating "tea," guaranteed to wipe out anyone who drinks it!
Catch the new episodes on our Prince of Tennis page.
Episode 37: A Tennis Ball with Ryoma's Face
It’s Ryoma’s day off, but Nanjiro tricks him into giving tennis lessons to Sakuno and Tomoka!
Episode 38: Penal-Tea
Before Seigaku’s tennis practice starts, a rival player from Yamabuki is seen on campus asking around for Ryoma and causing trouble. Meanwhile, Inui has some very special training planned.
Today sees a double-whammy of two pivotal episodes as we rejoin the manga story arc. In episode 152 and episode 153 Sasuke continues his plans for invasion and domination (muahaha) while Naruto gets the heartbreaking news about his mentor... it chokes us up a bit just talking about it. In the next few weeks, there will be plenty of high drama, mind-blowing action and game-changing events taking place -- we hope you're looking forward to it as much as we are... and be sure to leave some comments on individual episode pages!
We're off to the Pro Exams, and this time Hikaru isn't going to get fazed by some grubby-looking adults! In this week's fresh episodes of Hikaru no Go, the matches that separate the wheat from the chaff have begun, and only three players can earn the honor of turning pro. Hikaru has proven he can bounce back from failure, but can he handle success when everyone is gunning for him (including his old rival Akira, who ends up consulting with one of Hikaru's opponents)? And be sure not to miss more live-action Go training from the cute Yukari Sensei at the end of each episode!
Episode 37: The Pro Exam Begins
It’s time for the Pro Exam and Hikaru’s starting off with six straight wins in a row. Can he keep his winning streak going or will his fellow insei knock him off his undefeated pedestal...?
Episode 38: The Challengers
As the Pro Exam continues, Hikaru learns from his fellow opponents that the road to turning pro isn’t as easy as it appears to be.
How do you pay tribute to the man…or more accurately, the enigma from Bleach known as Mayuri Kurotsuchi? There's a real danger when he takes an interest in anyone, so be prepared to flee at a moment’s notice if you wish him a happy birthday today!
As head of the Department of Research and Development Captain Kurotsuchi shows a ruthless dedication to his calling that might be unequaled in all the Soul Society. His quest to satisfy his scientific curiosity is so powerful that he sees everyone as a potential research subject, even himself. In fact, he owes his striking looks to the many body modifications he has made to himself, as well as daily applications of makeup that he removes each night.
Captain Kurotsuchi's flair for drama is hard to miss during his heated battle with the intruder Uryû Ishida. (episodes 43 and 44) Once you see the captain's bankai, Konjiki Ashisogi Jizô, you aren’t likely forget it! The sight of a massive slug topped with something like an infant’s head really is that disturbing. Just be sure to steer clear of the bankai’s lethal spray, which the captain created from his own blood!
To see Mayuri really shine, check out the Bount saga – starting from episode 71, it’s Mayuri’s investigation of the Bount that reveals the presence of a traitor in the Soul Society, and he gets the spotlight all to himself in episode 101 with a no-holds-barred showdown against the Bount Sawatari. Mayuri shows he’s a tough customer, with or without his arm! (Of course it helps that he can regenerate his limbs.)
On a side note: The young girl Nemu, whom he calls “his daughter,” is actually one of his own creations. The captain may be terribly cruel to her, but she’s loyal to him nonetheless. Perhaps she’ll prepare a birthday treat for him if no one else has the courage!
[whispering] Psst! Happy birthday, Captain Kurotsuchi!
-- Yuki Takagaki (Editor, VIZ Media)
Character Data: Mayuri Kurotsuchi
Squad #: 12
Birthday: March 30
Height: 174 cm
Weight: 54 kg
Description: Captain of the Twelfth Squad as well as the head of the Soul Society's Department of Research and Development, he is a mad scientist with an inquiring mind. He thinks nothing of others in his pursuit to satisfy his intellectual curiosity, and has even modified his own body.
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