“Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War” - Episode 3 Review
“Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War” Episode 3, entitled “March of the Starcross” is another excellent episode in the long awaited revival of beloved anime franchise “Bleach.”
Episode 2 ended on a nasty cliffhanger, with Ichigo staring down Quilge Opie, (nicknamed “J”) who had just finished gleefully massacring a group of enslaved Arrancars in Hueco Mundo. Luckily Episode 3 wastes no time diving into the battle between everyone’s favorite substitute Soul Reaper and his newfound foe.
A significant portion of Episode 3 focuses on the clash between Ichigo and J. The two exchange blows as J taunts Ichigo who responds in his signature snarky fashion. Meanwhile Nel, Sado and Orihime take cover to avoid getting caught up in the skirmish.
At the end of Episode 2 Captain Kurotsuchi revealed that the mysterious group of outlaws who declared war on Soul Society and invaded Hueco Mundo are none other than Quincies. Up to this point in the series Uryu and his father were thought to be the last of the Quincies, as the others were supposedly wiped out by the Soul Reapers 1,000 years ago.
In Episode 1 the group of Quincies who raided Yamamoto’s office declared that a great war would begin in five days. While the amount of time that has passed since isn’t specified, one could assume the five day deadline is almost up as the captains and lieutenants of Soul Society are seen preparing for all out war.
Back in the world of the living, Uryu scours his fathers library for information that could help lead him to discovering how a faction of Quincies remained hidden for ten millennia.
It will be interesting to see how he handles the conflict between Soul Reaper and Quincy moving forward in this arc. Will he embrace his Quincy DNA and join the Sternritter in their conquest against Soul Society, or will he remain loyal to his three companions?
The episode ends ominously with an army of Quincies preparing to storm the gates of Soul Society with their mysterious leader, who we’ve only seen quick glimpses of in the first 3 episodes.
Episode 3 has everything that made the first two great, stunning animation, thoughtful choreography, and an impeccable score. “Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War” continues to improve upon the first 16 seasons of the anime in every way possible.
Seeing Uryu’s internal struggle as he grapples with his Quincy heritage and his allegiance to his friends has been one of the most intriguing aspects of the season so far. His character was never explored to the extent that Ichigo, Orihime and Sado were so it’s great to see him get some time in the spotlight.
It’s clear that episodes 1-3 have existed mostly to lay the groundwork for the main conflict of this season. While it’s too early to put this arc on the same level as the Soul Society or Arrancar arcs, if all of the building blocks established so far fall neatly into place Bleach fans may have a new contender for best arc in the series.
Episode 2 maintains the high standard set by the first two, while giving the audience more insight into a fan favorite character’s psyche, and promising to put the “war” in “Thousand-Year Blood War” in next week's episode.
Will Anderson is a first-year majoring in communications. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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