Anime Reporter types words on a computer, occasionally pausing to check social media, eat snack food and try to construct a theme song for myself in my head, and I do this all in the name of reviewing Bleach Season 15 Part 01 (episodes 317-329). Assuming that you’re familiar with the concept of seasons, episodes, numbers or spoilers, the following alert should be entirely unnecessary.
For my review on the second part of Season 14, click here.
Well, Karakura Town and the Soul Society are finally being returned to normal. The Soul Reapers are putting the final touches on restoring the human town to its rightful state and everyone’s just about poised to breathe a sigh of relief… which is probably the most foolish thing a character can do at the beginning of a season. Some oddities arise when Soul Reapers encounter a pretty steep time delay between the human world and the Soul Society after they’ve restored Karakura and, what’s creepier, aggressive and, far less altruistic copies of the soul reapers and other characters appear and start implicating our heroes in all sorts of misdeeds. What’s more, these doppelgangers boast many of the same skills and powers as their counterparts (for the most part) and seem intent on taking them down. Thrown into the mix, a mysterious green-haired girl, Nozomi, is found by Kon in the human world and he spends a fair amount of time trying to keep her safe and get her to tell him who the hell she is.
While all of this is going on, Ichigo is still feeling the effects of the previous season as his powers begin to fade. The clock is still ticking on his effective sentence and there’s no knowing when he might be out of the game for good, but he’s surely not bowing out any time soon.
Bleach Season 15 is a storyline not found in the original manga, which typically means, as was the case with the Zanpakuto arc, that the events of this season are likely to be tied up in a neat little bow by the time Season 16 comes around. Many would call this filler material, but from what can be seen of Season 15 so far, it looks to be an impressive piece of filler with plenty of time given to character development and the fallout of the previous season, a seriously intriguing premise and a plot that, once you get to the bottom of it, you’re not quite sure why they haven’t done this before.
Plot Development: 8
Character Development: 6
74% – “Strong Showing”– Bleach Season 15 Part 01 kicks things off nicely with a sharp, well executed new storyline, shifting gears nicely from the heavy, theatrical finale of the previous season and going for a smaller, if more chaotic plot. Bleach fans; what are you waiting for? I mean- Monday, I guess, because that’s when it comes out, but other than that…