Bleach 556 Review – “The Wolfsbane”
Written by: ClayDragon
What…I can’t…What is this I don’t even...
Firstly, it turns out that Bambietta’s attack hit Shinji, and he collapses in a smoking heap as another explosion goes off behind him. Bambietta says that it doesn’t matter if Shinji’s Zanpakuto disoriented her, as she can just blow up everything and kill him that way. She reveals that her Sternritter letter of ‘E’ stands for ‘the Explode’, and she uses her Vollständig wings to fly up and bombard the area below her.
When the smoke clears, she sees that Komamura shielded Shinji from further harm, and at that moment Momo appears and attempts to attack Bambietta. Sadly, any awesomeness that might have resulted from her rushing Bambietta is negated by Komamura grabbing her and moving her out of the way of Bambietta’s attacks. He then chastises Momo for being too rash, and says that she can’t use her Zanpakuto to offset Bambietta’s attacks.
|Quincies seem to do lots of overkill.|
As Bambietta readies another attack, Komamura prepares himself, realising that there’s a tiny gap between the impact of the attack and the explosion, and reasons that he can repel the explosion. However, at the last second he dodges out of the way, and Bambietta notes that he’s realised the true extent of her power. It turns out that she doesn’t simply fire explosives, but that everything that’s hit with her Reishi becomes a bomb, and so her attacks can’t be blocked. As she fires yet another barrage, Komamura shields Momo and Shinji, and when the dust clears, Bambietta taunts him some more. What she doesn’t realise is that underneath his armour, Komamura is now apparently human. So yeah, that’s a thing now.
|Wait, didn't he lose that ear?|
It would appear that Komamura won the fight against his great-grandfather, and so the hidden technique was passed on to him. Apparently, Komamura and his kin are werewolves, and were banished to an animal realm. At some point, they moved/escaped to the Soul Society, and discovered that they can temporarily revert to being human, and gain immense strength in the process. However, Komamura’s great-grandfather only agrees to teach him the technique if he gouges his own heart out and offers it up.
|This is not the face of sanity.|
After some deliberation, Komamura does so, and back in the present, he activates his Bankai, which now has a new (and pretty damn creepy) look. Incidentally, the new Bankai is probably the second longest attack name in Bleach history. In case you’re wondering, this is the longest:
|It's quite impressive that he said all that in one breath.|
Even though Shinji is more than likely still alive, I have to wonder why Momo showed up. At least Shinji’s Zanpakuto was useful in this fight (only for a moment, but still), whereas the only thing that Momo’s does is shoot fireballs, which wouldn’t be very effective against an opponent who can cause anything to explode. Unless Momo has secretly gained a Bankai (which, to be honest, wouldn’t entirely surprise me), I don’t really see how she’ll be useful in this fight.
|Does it have a mustache? Because that looks like one awesome mustache.|
So yeah, Komamura is a werewolf. Perhaps surprisingly, I never questioned why he looked the way he did. When I first saw him, I just thought ‘oh hey, that guy’s a wolf. Cool.’. I have to say, I’m on the fence regarding whether or not I like his new transformation. On one hand, it could provide grounds for some character development, and it could result in him getting some fairly-needed screentime. On the other hand, it has pretty much removed the main unique thing about Komamura, and given that it sort of came out of left field, I’m wondering how (if at all) Kubo is going to tie it into past storylines. At the moment, I’m giving Kubo the benefit of the doubt, although this may change depending on how the next few chapters go.
|"Komamura wants to learn the move 'New Bankai', but Komamura cannot learn more than four moves. Would you like to delete a move to make room for 'New Bankai'?"|
Good Things: The fight with Bambietta is getting more serious.
We’ve avoided a long flashback with Komamura and his great-grandfather.
Komamura’s creepy new Bankai.
Bad Things: Momo’s appearance seems fairly useless.
Uncertainty regarding Komamura’s new form.
ClayDragon is currently studying Physics at university, and is constantly bewildered by it. The main method of contacting him is his Gmail account at firstname.lastname@example.org. The alternative is his Skype account at kyleroulston1993. When not playing games or reading, he can be found with his head in his hands whilst trying in vain to understand quantum physics. He often wonders how cranes are erected.