Bleach: The Thousand Year Blood War Episode 12:
Everything But The Rain June Truth.
Animated by Studio Pierrot.
Created by Kubo "God of Character Design" Tite.
Last week, on the greatest Shonen series, we journeyed back in time, once more! This time, it was to the year that the young captain of Squad 10, Shiba Isshin, met his future wife Kurosaki Misaki... A QUINCY?!?!
Then, because this is Bleach, after all, Aizen showed up and started pulling some nonsense. He sent a rather familiar looking Hollow he'd altered to rampage a little in the real world, and Isshin tried to stop it. It didn't go well. Then Masaki tried to help... it went a little better, but still not all THAT well.
This week, we deal with the fallout from the Hollow attack. It seems that the Uryu family take a somewhat dim view on assisting Soul Reapers...
But none of that matters, because although he's gone, this particular Hollow hasn't quite lost its fight just yet!
So, if you want to know how the 200+ year old Isshin ended up married to the teenage Misaki, this is the episode you've been waiting for!
Just... don't focus too much on the ages.
Also: Make sure to stick around! Because this episode has a VERY important scene, after the credits. You REALLY don't want to miss this.
Ichigo Kurosaki is just a normal teenager!
Wait, no, he's a Substitute Shinigami, using powers he borrowed from his friend Rukia!
Waaaaiiiittt. No. He's actually a half-human, half-Shinigami, using powers he inherited from his father!
HOLD UP! He's actually a Vizard! A Shinigami/Hollow hybrid! Because... well, if you've seen last week's episode, you know why.
But is he, though? Or, since he lost his Shinigami powers, is he ACTUALLY a Fullbringer? Because of plot or something. I don't know. No one cares about the Fullbring arc.
For frak sake, he got his Shinigami powers back, but now he's fighting the Quincy and apparently he's one of them as well...
So, if you've read any of my reviews before this one, you'll know there's nothing I love more than really well executed power growth. There's something hugely satisfying about seeing a character train and grow, and the pay off when they unleash some awesome new move is always worth it.
You're not going to get that, in Bleach.
It's a running joke, by this point, that whoever the main villain is for that arc, they'll find some way to give Ichigo a comparable power. Just because.
It's happened every single time, and the Thousand Year Blood War is no different. Last week we got the start of the story, and this week we got the wrap-up: Masaki Kurosaki was a Quincy! and a pretty powerful one by all accounts, and because Quincy powers are passed down in the blood... that means Ichigo is a Quincy too... kinda.
It's not the worst way they've shoehorned in a new power for Ichigo, and if you go back and watch some of the earlier episodes, Ichigo subconsciously activating Blut Vein DOES explain how he survived some of the attacks that he really shouldn't have been able to... But you have to wonder if that was really Kubo's plan, or just a happy accident.
And if you watch the post credit scene, you'll find out the answer to last week's big question: If Masaki was really such a badass Quincy, how did a punk Hollow like Grand Fisher manage to kill her?
Overall, Episode 12 was a lot better than my somewhat flippant review would lead you to believe. If you're a fan of strong world building and some character development for Isshin, Masaki, and Ryuken, and you want to finally find out who Ishida's mother is... you'll never much enjoy this episode!
And if you want to find out how Ichigo gets his groove back, and gets back in the fight... you'll have to come back next week, for the final episode of this cour!
If you want to ignore the fairly creepy age gap, check out Bleach: The Thousand Year Blood War on Hulu/Disney+ streaming NOW!
Or, if you want to start the journey from its very beginning, you can now watch the series in its entirety, also on Hulu/Disney+!
Or, if you want to cheat and read ahead, check out Chapter 480 onwards, of the Bleach Manga, on the Shonen Jump App!
Taheg Gloder is a Freelance Copywriter from England. Obsessed with comics and Manga since his teens, he now splits his time between writing comic reviews and retrospectives for POP, and doing reactions on his YouTube Channel, The Dragon & The Hound. He lives alone, because he’s a hermit.