Bleach 668 is out. Go get it. You’re going to want to read this one, trust me.
I’m putting this first because… it’s actually kind of hilarious, and I doubt that anyone is going to talk much about anything that happened before the last panel. And, I want to remember this lovely trash talk from Byakuya (who, I have to suddenly notice is actually wearing a coat OVER his haori…. for some reason I’d thought the tassel-y thing was a new version of his haori. Huh. Now 7emptymirrors theory that this new look is some True First haori has even more traction.)
The only other moments in this chapter worth pointing out before we get to the main attraction, is of course, Kubo’s moment of self-recognition/4th wall breakage:
Okay, enough of all that, let’s get to the meat, the thing everyone is talking about. I’ll just drop in the whole page so we can read it all again:
We’re going to get to see Kenpachi’s bankai next chapter. Given what Yachiru does in this scene, I’m going to guess Kenpachi’s bankai is kidou based. You see her infuse something into the sword, right? Plus, there were always shadows of kidou around Yachiru in the past. Remember the time she has a kind of butterfly of reiatsu around her eyes when that guy comes to interrupt the Ichigo/Kenpachi fight with news of Aizen’s “death”? KIDOU. Mark. My. Words.
In which case, he really is going to be unstoppable.
The other thing is, of course, is that Kenpachi is going to go down in history as the only Shinigami whose bankai has a shikai of its own.
I know it will never happen because it’s way too silly, but I really would almost love these two imaginary friends of Yachiru’s to somehow be part of Kenny’s bankai. There’s something wrong with me, but I think it would be hilarious if this massively terrifying unstoppable killer had a pink fluffy murder monster as a bankai.
Also, if zanpakutō are living separate /not-seperate manifestations of a Shinigami’s soul, then we 1) have yet another example of a female soul inside a male presenting body (in Kenpachi’s case, über male presenting,) 2) part of Kenpachi’s soul loves konpeto, stealing koi from the Kuchiki mansion, and is the vice-president of the Women’s Shinigami Association.
Just a note: all of the bankai have been female in these last few chapters, and at least TWO of the war potentials have female zanpakuto (Urahara and Kenpachi.)
People have been arguing about how this could happen–how could a zanpakutō spirit walk around on its own? Thing is, as much as I do believe Kubo-sensei ass-pulls some stuff, this one he’s set up since the Rescue Arc. We know, for instance, that Zabimaru could manifest before Renji was conscious. We see the nue / chimera appear and nudge him awake in the jail cell (after he’s been wounded and arrested after his second fight with Ichigo). So, this is absolutely within the realm of possibility.
Plus, I think Kubo-sensei has known he was going to pull this at LEAST from whenever the Zanpakutō Rebellion filler arc was written, because Kenpachi and Yachiru were notably absent. Like, really, really OBVIOUSLY absent for most of it (the story goes to pains to show them lost in the woods.) So, I think Kubo told whoever helped write that: “You’ve got to leave Kenpachi out of this, and Yachiru, too.”
My only question is that when Yachiru disappeared, she left behind her clothes. Why?