Bleach Episode #293 Anime Review

With Ichigo facing one of his greatest challenges yet, and one that dates back a fair way to the earlier part of the series, Aizen is giving him a definite run for his money. And Aizen has certainly caused enough waves in this arc that he's got just about everyone else against him as well. While we haven't gotten a full payoff in the episodes prior to this as it's focused more on side fights, it's built up fairly well and it provides for an engaging setting as we see the city being destroyed below them as they fight it out, a nice contrast from the earlier arc with Ichigo running around the Soul Society and causing lots of trouble there. It's also a welcome change of pace that the others that are there aren't letting him fight alone since they all have a vested interest in seeing Aizen taken down and that it makes logical sense for it to be a group effort.

Of course, that doesn't exactly go to plan as there's a bit of one on one going on here but eventually they do get into the game of all of them attacking at different times with different methods, pushing Aizen to defend on multiple fronts. But because of who he is, he's able to handle it fairly easily for the most part with only a few instances of a slight grimace about dealing with a particular aspect of it. But all it serves to do is to show that Aizen is more powerful than even they thought he was as he's able to deal with it all while still remaining calm, something that definitely gives him a strong psychological edge over the rest of them. And as he starts to get serious and really causes damage, it only builds up more from there.

As Aizen starts taking them out though, it's disconcerting to see that after having them all stand with Ichigo that Ichigo is hanging mostly in the background, rather stunned at the sight he's seeing as even the Stealth Force has managed to suffer a pretty strong blow from Aizen. Hitsugaya has a pretty good arc in this episode as he deals with Aizen but when it comes down to it, especially after his past, he's not someone to be believed no matter what. There's the old adage of don't believe they're dead unless you see the body, but with Aizen even then you can't believe it. The captains and others involved in this particular fight shine brightly, but it all comes down to the same problem in that there's that belief that no matter what they do and who they say will die, they really won't die and that causes it to lose a good deal of its tension.

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