We get to the 100th episode, and beyond, in Bleach
- Season 5: The Assault from Viz. This collection has Ichigo and his allies
traveling to the Soul Society once more to protect it from the Bounts,
incredible power who are plotting to destroy the Sereitei.
The storyline is wrapped up in this
collection and not a moment too soon.
I usually include a section on the background of an anime
series, but since this is covering the end of the fourth season, I
everyone who is reading this pretty much knows who Ichigo is, what a
Reaper does, and just who and what the Soul Society is.
If not, check out my reviews of the earlier
This collection: In the first part of season
four we were introduced to the Bounts, near immortal humans with
that live off of consuming human souls. That
season revolved around the leader of the Bounts, Kariya, plot to
capture a Quincy
and use his power
to open a portal to the Soul Society.
They accomplish this, and as season 5 open Ichico and his gang
Even after travelling to the Soul Society however, Kariya
and the Bounts need to get into the inner fortress, the Sereitei, where
the leaders of the Society reside. To
achieve this end they head towards the most crime-ridden area of the
Rukongai. They recruit the lower class
citizens and use them to help open the giant gates of the Sereitei,
equality for all after the Society falls.
Of course they double cross these poor wretches, abandoning them
they've entered the fortress, thanks in part to a diversion that
The 13 squads fan out to capture the intruders, but the
Bounts are not that easily conquered.
Each one of them can easily take on a whole squad, and they're
match for a squad captain. It turns out
that the Soul Society is permeated with energy that the Bounts can tap
to heal themselves, making them virtually invincible.
The Bounts split up, dividing the defending forces.
While his comrades are fighting the Captains,
Kariya has a chance to accomplish his real mission:
to obtain a Bount crest, the Jōkaishō. With
this powerful item, Kariya has the power
to destroy the whole Sereitei, and that's exactly what he plans to do
can't stop him.
This season, like the previous one, wasn't adapted from the Bleach
manga as the first three seasons
were, and it shows. This story line
didn't have the punch that the earlier ones did. Yes,
the Bount's doll's were fun weapons for
them to wield, but the Bounts themselves weren't really all that
unique, as far
as villains go. They possessed neither
the creativity of the Hollows nor the personalities of the Captains.
Added to that was the plot: a group of people invading the
Soul Society in order to get something.
Isn't that pretty much what happened in seasons two and three? The Bounts even fight the same Captains that
Ichigo and company did a couple of seasons back. This
whole season had a feeling of
been-there-done-that which never really faded.
That's not to say that this season was bad or worthless,
it's not. There are some exciting
battles and some cool moments. The
problem is that the show is just retreading old stories, but those
good, so you could do worse.
These next four volumes of the series, containing the episodes 92-109
come in four
slimline cases. These in turn are housed
in a slipcase.
The set comes with the original Japanese audio track as well as an
both in stereo. I alternated between the two every episode for
couple of discs, and finally settled on the Japanese track which was
just a tad
more natural sounding. The English actors did a good job, and
breathe live into the animated characters. While the show would
enhanced by a multi-track audio option (especially during the fight
Menos Grande), the stereo audio was fine. There was a little use
the soundstage, though not as much as I was expecting.
There are optional English subtitles, though they don't translate signs
written text, which was a bit irritating at times.
This show is presented with a full frame image, which looks pretty
The colors are nice and strong and the blacks are solid. There
little banding in some scenes, and there was a bit more aliasing than I
remember in previous collections.
Otherwise the picture looks fine.
Not much of the way of extras this time around.
There's a clean opening and closing animation as well as some
art galleries. The biggest bonus is an Interactive Squad Roster which allows
viewers to select a squad from the Soul Society and then read a page on
Captain and Lieutenant of that squad.
While this season doesn't hit the highs of the first three years of the
it's still a lot of fun. Aside from a
feeling of déjà vu, the season had some fun battles and
wrapped up the whole
Bount story line in a nice way. Recommendation.