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REVIEW: Bleach: Can't Fear Your Own World Vol 1


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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 3626
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 3:43 pm Reply with quote
What I always found most frustrating out of the (many) underdeveloped elements in Bleach was what a horrible place the Soul Society actually was. Even at the very beginning of the series, Rukia was straight-up lying to the souls that she and Ichigo purified, saying, "The Soul Society is a wonderful place." She knew goddamn well from her childhood that it was anything but, that these souls were entering into a dystopian environment where no one cared about them and they would never be reunited with their loved ones, because no one had ever bothered to set up a system to do so. I've often thought about what nearly any other shounen protagonist, your Luffys and Narutos, would have done when presented with a situation like that, and the answer is pretty clear: they would have punched their way through everyone responsible until things were set right. But after Rukia's rescue, Bleach entirely drops the topic as if it never existed. It was maddeningly frustrating. It's good to hear that another author is taking some of Kubo's narrative wet farts and attempting to do something constructive with them.
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tintor2



Joined: 11 Aug 2010
Posts: 523
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:53 pm Reply with quote
About cast it sometimes feel that the Shinigami took over the role of main characters following Ichigo considering how Ishida, Sado and Inoue barely do something after Soul Society. I mean Inoue was supposed to be the focus of the Arrancar arc but Aizen instead says that the one he wanted was Ichigo. Ishida had some build up in the final arc due to his parents being explored but I don't remember a single growth or anything. Meanwhile, Sado... he married with the floor or something.
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BlueBeast33



Joined: 09 Jul 2015
Posts: 102
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 8:16 pm Reply with quote
Keep in mind that this is a collaboration between two authors. Narita is only able to write this story due to Kubo giving him all the details on plot, characters, etc. It's not just a one-man show. A lot of what you read here are things that Kubo had to leave out of the manga due to time constraints and his health issues, Ginjo's backstory being one of the big ones.
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Scion Drake



Joined: 25 Nov 2017
Posts: 714
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:00 pm Reply with quote
BlueBeast33 wrote:
Keep in mind that this is a collaboration between two authors. Narita is only able to write this story due to Kubo giving him all the details on plot, characters, etc. It's not just a one-man show. A lot of what you read here are things that Kubo had to leave out of the manga due to time constraints and his health issues, Ginjo's backstory being one of the big ones.


Its always interesting to hear about the stuff Kubo had to cut-out or change.

For instance the Soul Reapers overtaking the story is due to fan demand as they became far more popular than Ichigo's group of friends. And apparently every time Kubo has attempted to give them focus such as the start of the Arrancar arc or the Xcution Arc, he's been advised to suddenly bring in the Reapers because fans are always clamoring for them.

Or the infamously long Arrancar Saga which was apparently originally planned to be shorter & simpler but the popularity of the Arrancar characters got Kubo to be advised to give more focus to them which lead to the arc spiraling out of control into the extremely long saga its known as.
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BlueBeast33



Joined: 09 Jul 2015
Posts: 102
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:15 pm Reply with quote
Yep, sometimes fan demand and editor pressure can lead to unnecessary changes or omissions to a story, especially in Shounen Jump.
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 3626
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 9:26 pm Reply with quote
BlueBeast33 wrote:
Yep, sometimes fan demand and editor pressure can lead to unnecessary changes or omissions to a story, especially in Shounen Jump.

I always see people use that as an excuse for the direction the series went, but at the end of the day Kubo didn't have to acquiesce to those demands. Is there editorial pressure on manga authors? For sure, but it's not as though the authors are completely beholden to every single suggestion they make, either. At its height Bleach was an incredibly successful series, and you can't convince me for a moment that this didn't give Kubo some ability to push back on suggestions he didn't agree with.

As for fan demands...well, I've been thoroughly convinced by a few decades' worth of media consumption that fans rarely (if ever) know what they actually want. Acquiescing to their every fickle whim is a recipe for writing disaster and, well, we saw how that turned out. The story was absolutely richer when Ichigo's friends were involved, instead of shoving the same half-dozen Soul Reapers who topped the popularity polls into every single arc.
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BlueBeast33



Joined: 09 Jul 2015
Posts: 102
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:56 pm Reply with quote
We don't really disagree (much), I was just responding to someone. My first comment was mainly what I wanted to highlight in regards to this novel.

I can't really tell you what goes through mangaka's heads though when it comes to outside influences, we don't really know a whole lot of what goes on behind the scenes. Sometimes it really is best to ignore certain requests. I think Hajime Isayama chose to change his original ending of Attack on Titan due to its popularity, or something along those lines. Was he wrong for doing so? Hard to say.
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Minos_Kurumada



Joined: 04 Nov 2015
Posts: 196
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:00 am Reply with quote
So, another "Everybody writes Dragon Ball/Naruto better than the autor" situation... oh well, I suppose it's easier to do when you have all the plot details.

Anyways, something that really frustrates me about Bleach is that most of its problems come from the unnecessary huge cast... why is frustrating?

Because Kubo already knows the way to solve it: Bleach is monumentally obviously influenced by Saint Seiya and SS also had a huge cast, but never had that problem...why?

Because Kurumada had the balls to freaking kill his characters, thus, in the final arc he had only the main cast to worry about and even could introduce new characters like Orphe plus world building.

Something Kubo never had the guts to do, so at the end he had: the main cast, the 12 Generals, the endless river of seconds, thirds and fourth Seats, the Fullbringers, the Vizards, the Arrancar plus all of the family members and "Friends", like the fireworks guy, running around.

And even with these 50+ morons he includes MORE characters like the royal guard plus that Yoruichi brother, that was obviously gonna be important since he appeared on color pages, but then dropped him because enough was enough.

If he wanted to do this war arc with a huge cast then he should have done just like HeroAca is doing right now and do spoiler[an all out war combined with team fights.].
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Scion Drake



Joined: 25 Nov 2017
Posts: 714
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 12:05 am Reply with quote
Top Gun wrote:
BlueBeast33 wrote:
Yep, sometimes fan demand and editor pressure can lead to unnecessary changes or omissions to a story, especially in Shounen Jump.

I always see people use that as an excuse for the direction the series went, but at the end of the day Kubo didn't have to acquiesce to those demands. Is there editorial pressure on manga authors? For sure, but it's not as though the authors are completely beholden to every single suggestion they make, either. At its height Bleach was an incredibly successful series, and you can't convince me for a moment that this didn't give Kubo some ability to push back on suggestions he didn't agree with.

As for fan demands...well, I've been thoroughly convinced by a few decades' worth of media consumption that fans rarely (if ever) know what they actually want. Acquiescing to their every fickle whim is a recipe for writing disaster and, well, we saw how that turned out. The story was absolutely richer when Ichigo's friends were involved, instead of shoving the same half-dozen Soul Reapers who topped the popularity polls into every single arc.


Well the relationship between a mangeka & their editor can be rather complex. I remember an famous case of an author changing their plans based on input being Dragon Ball’s Toriyama & the Cell Saga. The reason why that arc had so many villain changes is because Toriyama’s editor (whether it was his current one or not) kept telling him he doesn’t like the villains.

For the original 2 Androids he thought they looked unmenacing, then he said the same for 17 & 18, & when Cell appeared he criticized his appearances leading to Cell’s various transformations. It’s rather incredible at that’s why the Cell Saga had so many villain changes, because of editor advisement.

Granted that’s the only example I can think of so it would be swell if anyone can name other examples of known executive meddling causing changes in stories.
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 3626
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:26 am Reply with quote
Minos_Kurumada wrote:

Anyways, something that really frustrates me about Bleach is that most of its problems come from the unnecessary huge cast... why is frustrating?

Because Kubo already knows the way to solve it: Bleach is monumentally obviously influenced by Saint Seiya and SS also had a huge cast, but never had that problem...why?

Because Kurumada had the balls to freaking kill his characters, thus, in the final arc he had only the main cast to worry about and even could introduce new characters like Orphe plus world building.

Something Kubo never had the guts to do, so at the end he had: the main cast, the 12 Generals, the endless river of seconds, thirds and fourth Seats, the Fullbringers, the Vizards, the Arrancar plus all of the family members and "Friends", like the fireworks guy, running around.

And even with these 50+ morons he includes MORE characters like the royal guard plus that Yoruichi brother, that was obviously gonna be important since he appeared on color pages, but then dropped him because enough was enough.

I don't think the cast size was nearly so much the issue as how Kubo used them (or didn't). He would habitually throw these huge chunks of new characters at the reader/viewer, and then proceed to do absolutely nothing with the majority of them. That would be okay if they were mere cannon fodder that never came up again, but in the case of a group like the Soul Society officers, they stuck around forever, yet only a few of them received anything resembling character development. I only got as far as the anime myself, but I remember reading about the fate of spoiler[Yamamoto's lieutenant], and how big of a deal it was portrayed to be...and despite that character technically being around for hundreds of episodes I still don't know their name in the slightest without looking it up. So much of Bleach's cast is this endless sea of miscellaneous faces, because Kubo never gave them anything at all to do.

And the solution doesn't even have to be knocking them off, either. Oda is absolutely notorious for almost never killing characters in One Piece, but even though the list of named characters is in the thousands at this point, it generally works out, because the series is deliberately structured to compartmentalize different groups. The Straw Hats meet a bunch of new faces with every island they visit, but most of them are left behind when they leave, so it never seems nearly so overwhelming, and then Oda's free to pick and choose whoever he wants to show up at some point down the line. Kubo largely kept his series in the same few locales, so we kept running into the same characters over and over again, which only helped emphasize how pointless so many of them were.
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jdnation



Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 1289
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 12:05 am Reply with quote
I'm personally hoping that the upcoming anime continuation features changes and rewrites to include good stuff like this.
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Minos_Kurumada



Joined: 04 Nov 2015
Posts: 196
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 2:37 am Reply with quote
jdnation wrote:
I'm personally hoping that the upcoming anime continuation features changes and rewrites to include good stuff like this.


Hell naw, I want this trainwreck fully animated including the spoiler[semen quote].

I wanna see twitter explode.
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Top Gun



Joined: 28 Sep 2007
Posts: 3626
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 1:56 pm Reply with quote
I've had a friend say that she needs everyone else to suffer watching spoiler[Mayuri fight a giant hand] for three months straight.
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BlueBeast33



Joined: 09 Jul 2015
Posts: 102
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 10:53 pm Reply with quote
That fight is fine and can be done in 2 or 3 episodes.
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CelestialEmpress



Joined: 01 Jun 2011
Posts: 54
PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2020 11:41 pm Reply with quote
BlueBeast33 wrote:
That fight is fine and can be done in 2 or 3 episodes.

No, this fight took 10 chapters to finish and the anime people should really have to waste just as many weeks on it to really appreciate the glacial pace that the readers had to sit through.
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