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Ichigo Kurosaki has become a respected member of the Soul Society, beings dedicated to defending the human world from intrusions by demons and to safeguard souls on their journey to the afterlife, the realm of the Soul Reapers. The Soul Reapers have been facing one of their most personal adversaries, in the form of their own swords, imbued with much of the reapers powers; they represent one of the societies greatest threats...
Bleach: Series 12 - Part 3: Zanpakut: The Alternate (2009 - eps. 254 - 265) continues the series long filler show, based on the original manga series written and illustrated by Tite Kubo. It’s a filler story as occasionally the anime had to make its own stories up while waiting for the manga to be produced. This is not a bad thing and, in truth, there are times when I have enjoyed the filler shows better than the cannon story. This, of course, will be a matter of personal choice.
The producers of the show retained much of the main cannon, so we have the usual characters doing their thing; and their thing is to fight.
Given that the Zanpakut have been freed from the evil influence which first woke them and transformed them into their current form, you would have thought that this would be the end. Unfortunately the anime’s producers have more episodes to fill and as the story progresses, you do feel like they shot themselves in the foot by ending the threat too soon. The fight against the sword fiends feels like a wrapping up exercise which should not have taken up so many episodes.
The episodes are presented as a two disc DVD set, as per the rest of the series you are presented with a very clear, aspect ratio 1.78:1, picture. Disc one has the textless opening sequence, disc two the textless closing. The transfer is very good as is the overall picture quality.
The last third of this season feel like filler within filler, still good for the fights and the quality of the animation, but you can’t help but feel that the writers started running out of things to construct.