My god! Do we really suck, or is this guy really that good?
– Paul Giamatti in Shoot ‘Em Up
I’m going to be talking Anime today, so if you don’t really watch any, feel free to tune out now. Those of you who are staying, I’m going to be talking about Bleach – if you don’t know it, or have just started watching, I’m issuing a SPOILER ALERT. I’m going to try and keep it vague but I make no promises.
Anyway, Bleach is a great anime – I’d highly recommend it to anyone. For the most part, my tastes in anime were influenced by my love of Transformers as a kid, so I mainly only go for the ones that involve mech suites or giant robots of some description, and Bleach was the first anime I liked that fell outside of that. The action is great, the story and premise is actually fairly thought out and established, for an anime, and it can be very action focused.
I only have one issue with Bleach, and that’s with the series’ primary antagonist. This problem only arises about 1% of the time to be fair, since his character (especially the way in which he’s set up) is for the most part well handled. He is the most evil person you will come across, ridiculously strong, and it’s good. What I have a problem with though is how good (in terms of ability) he’s made out to be at certain points.
Every time something unexpected happens, he acts like he’s known from the beginning. Everything somehow was always part of his plan… even the main character’s personal progression, which the antagonist was never physically present for, was somehow also part of his plan. In the latest episode that I watched the other day (Which sparked this post) this guy gets betrayed… and yet apparently he always knew about that as well.
I’m sorry, no one is that good. No one can predict everything, or manipulate events so that everything goes ‘according to plan’ (The Dark Knight‘s Joke would be appalled). If you look at reviews on IGN from the time (spoilers), you’ll see more about what I mean – he’s too perfect, and everything is too planned. We the audience need something, you know? We need to know that he can be surprised. Again, referencing the latest episode, this guy is nearly killed by the betrayal, but survives. It’s ok to be nearly killed and still have it be a surprise. It still makes you the strongest asshole in the whole show.
Some other people say he’s over-powered… I don’t mind that so much. Sure, his Zanpaktou’s ability is a little bit silly, but it made for some great moments in the show. Being over-powered is something I can handle because it adds suspense in waiting to see how they do end up beating him – although you have to wonder if they sometimes wrote themselves into a tight spot or something. I just don’t like how he apparently knows everything.
Rant over. You’ll notice I’ve avoided mentioning this guy’s name. Surprisingly enough, telling you his name would in itself spoil it for anyone who hasn’t seen the show. It’s a very good twist, one the best I’ve seen. Seriously, go watch Bleach.
Until next time.