Same old scene, just with a younger versions of themselves.
Finally an action packed chapter, but the revelation at the end just deflates any excitement that had just built up.
Why does the bad guy have to be Aizen again?
When they’re talking about events over a hundred years ago, you would’ve expected the characters to be different from what they are today. Reminiscing about the past is one plot device to give characters more depths by showing the transformation from whom they used to be—like showing the seed before the tree or the catapillar before the butterfly.
So, when I first saw the Vizards as what they eventually came to hate and a young Byakuya whose temperament was as different as day and night from his current self, I was like this is far-out. Finally, something fresh out of these old characters. I was eager to see the metamorphosis.
Because of that, my expectation rose concerning the other characters as well—in particular, Aizen, Tosen and Gin. Surely, Aizen wasn’t born evil, Tosen’s first words weren’t I will follow Aizen, and Gin must’ve frown at least once because of acne.
So, why were they just the same as they are a hundred years later?
These negative-numbered chapters essentially form the prequel to the main story of Bleach. Most prequels feature a different set of the main cast. In the Lord of the Rings, the prequel The Hobbit featured Bilbo as the protagonist and the dragon Smug as the antagonist; the Ring of Power took a back seat. In Star Wars, Dark Vader was actually the hero in the prequel; he took a 180° turn to become the antagonist.
Bleach—Turn Back the Pendulum—seems to offer a different cast too. We have Hirako and Kisuke leading the main cast, and I’m still hoping that Ichigo’s dad Isshin would eventually take over as the hero here. So, why not introduce a different antagonist? Let Aizen take a back seat, and show us how he succeeded him.
In short, give us Aizen’s past.
Or are the writers planning to have us wait for chapters -209?