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Hi Bleach fans, I know I am late...yet again, but I had a good reason. Instead of rushing to make a review for the sake of having one on time, I decided to sit on it a day, so that I can give you a good quality review. With that being said, let's begin!
I liked this episode, but I didn't love it. The episode was not bad in any way, but the filler really took away from the emotional impact. However, I will get into my explanation of that in a bit. First, I will give my complaints about the filler arc (other than what I have already said).
I don't understand why Nozomi could not live and go off with Kon into the sunset. It would have been a perfect sendoff, and the viewers would not question where Kon had gone. The anime has now made Kon's exact whereabouts even more ambiguous than the manga. In the anime, I guess it was implied that Rukia took him to Soul Society, but it really is a bit of a stretch. In the manga omake, it was at least clear to an extent of what happened to Kon after the Karakurariser omake. Continuing about Kon, it is pretty bad when your comic relief character contributes more to the plot than your main character and main secondary characters. I mean what did Ichigo, Rukia, Orihime, and the rest of Team Karakura do that was important to the story? Nothing, THEY DID NOTHING! If you took Ichigo and friends out of the equation, the "plot" would not have changed at all. One of my main problems with this arc was Ichigo not only keeping his powers, but the fact that he contributed NOTHING to the plot, so why did the writing team need Ichigo at all? If the anime team wanted to go down that route, they could have made a plot that did not affect canon, or kept Ichigo unconscious like in the manga and had him save the day at the end? The team could have had an anime-only "Turn Back the Pendulum" style arc, with the past of secondary characters, and maybe have their basic back-stories written by Kubo, BUT NO, we get Super-Troll and Mega-Sue and the pathetic excuse for a plot. The anime team missed SO MANY opportunities, and this arc could have been great, but it will forever scar the anime industry as one of the worst filler arcs ever.
Going back to the episode, I thought that Ichigo and his friends just spending quality time together was great. No Hollows, No spiritual disasters, No fighting, just good quality time with everyone, including Tatsuki, Keigo, and Mizurio. However, I felt moments like these should have been spread out throughout the entire season, and not just shoved into a single episode. Again, this was another missed opportunity, by the anime team. By shoving all these heart-warming moments into a single episode, I was not able to feel a deep emotional impact for the "Big Goodbye" between Ichigo and Rukia. We have seen so little of all the Nakama, that I could not really get emotionally attached to them. This was one of the cases, where the manga did it better, by that I mean the emotional impact was more prominent. Did the anime team ruin it? No, I still sniffled a little bit, but it was not as heart wrenching because the filler has still left its marks on me. In the future I will just use brain wave therapy (I have used it, it works!) and just edit 310 and 342 together in my head, and forget that "thing" even exists...until I have to review the dub of it. I will further forget that "disaster" by the awesomeness of the Lost Agent Arc. Plus a note to the IchiRuki shippers and IchiHime or whatever you are if that's your into, look, you can have a deep emotional and intellectual relationship without wanting to get into each other's pants, it is possible both fictionally (Kekkaishi) and in real-life. One of my best friends is gay and I have a great relationship with him, and I hang-out with people because I enjoy hanging out with them and not to have "sexy-time." Many of you already know my view on shipping, so I will leave it at that.
Overall it was a good episode, and I CAN'T WAIT FOR NEXT WEEK (Fangirl Squeals)!
- Story 8/10
- Art/Animation 10/10
- Sound Effects 10/10
- Music 10/10
- Acting 10/10
- Omake 7/10
I give Bleach episode 342 a 9.2 out of 10. Remember to join me next Tuesday when I review Bleach episode 343, and join me on this Saturday when I review Bleach 225 dubbed.