The ninth episode of Bleach, Unbeatable Enemy is an emotional one and Ichigo’s heart really goes through a lot. I am really enjoying the rewatch and realising some moments were not as drawn out as I thought they were.
While I know the characters and names and subtleties, I am writing these episode summaries as if I am a new viewer. I shall only use names and such once they have been revealed in the series.
Arc: Agent of the Shinigami arc / Manga Chapter: 20-25
What happens in Bleach episode nine
We pick up where episode 8 ended with the sisters being attacked by a hollow. Ichigo arrives in time to cut the hollows ‘tongue’/tentacle thing’ and save Yuzu. The hollow then takes Karin as a hostage and tells Ichigo that he had been waiting for him. The other Shinigami, Saidō, arrives by the hollow too, joining Rukia. Ichigo is stunned when he recognises the girl standing in front of the hollow. He admits she is the girl that he had tried to save six years previously, when his mother had died.
Rukia tells Ichigo that the hollow’s code name that they have given him is Grand Fisher. That he is a particularly difficult hollow to track down. That he hunts keeping himself invisible and he disguises the lure on his head as a human – since anyone who could see his lure has high spirit power. She also explains that he has defeated every soul reaper that has gone after him over the past 50 years. Ichigo comes to realise that his mother had been killed by this hollow. Grand Fisher taunts Ichigo who then attacks recklessly due to his anger. Rukia gets involved with the fight which upsets the Grand Fisher. The Grand Fisher is taking great delight in tormenting Ichigo. Saidō cuts off the Grand Fisher’s hand that was holding Karin and saves her from a follow up attack. Saidō sees a lady flash on the hollows body after he sacrificed himself to save Karin. After saying a few words to Ichigo, he passes out.
Rukia tells Kon to take Ichigo’s sisters and run away with them. Ichigo declares that Rukia must stay out of the fight. That this fight is to avenge his mother, that it is his fight. Kon had taken the sisters to their father. Meanwhile Ichigo is doing all that he can to fight the Grand Fisher but he is severely outmatched and the hollow lectures Ichigo about the necessity for strategy in fights. Ichigo gets wounded by the Grand Fisher and his extending nails. The Grand Fisher is having too much fun tormenting and taunting Ichigo to kill him off just yet. Ichigo keeps telling Rukia to stay out of the fight. To break Ichigo’s spirit, the Grand Fisher changes his lure from the girl to the appearance of Ichigo’s mother. Ichigo is livid. Then the hollow makes the lure speak to Ichigo with his mother’s voice.
We cut to a flash back of Rukia’s past where once again she is being told to stay out of a fight. The man she is with explains that there are two kinds of battles. She recognises that the battle Ichigo is having is for his honour and that it is one he must fight alone. She resolves to not help him, even though she wants to and has to hold herself back. The other Shinigami, X wakes up. Ichigo charges in to attack the hollow again, but is stopped by having his mother be put in front of him. The hollow sends a spear through Ichigo’s shoulder. Still tormenting Ichigo, the hollow goes in for the finishing blow, when suddenly his lure starts glowing blue.
Ichigo recognises his mother and receives her dying thoughts. Rukia explains that it isn’t actually his mother, but that the hollow had recorded her last few thoughts. Ichigo is moved by his mother’s dying wish and thoughts. Ichigo is determined afterwards and manages to land a blow on the hollow and cause damage. The Grand Fisher flees after receiving the wound. Rukia tells Ichigo that the battle is over, but he declares it is not over until he kills the Grand Fisher and avenges his mother. Saidō acknowledges Ichigo’s potential and announces that he is leaving and wishes Rukia luck.
Ichigo finally makes it to his mother’s grave and is speaking to her when his dad approaches him. The pair chat a little while his father reminisces about being with Masaki. Ichigo asks his dad about why no one blames him for her death? Isshin explained that it was no one’s fault that she had died. Ichigo asks Rukia to let him be a soul reaper for a little while longer.
Memorable moments of the episode:
The whole fight with the Grand Fisher. Honestly, I thought this fight was longer so I was surprised that it had been wrapped up in this one episode. For me another memorable moment is Ichigo and Isshin sharing that moment in front of Masaki’s grave.
Fights in this episode:
- Ichigo vs Grand Fisher (Concluded)
Quotes I like from this Bleach Episode:
I’ve also made it my duty to protect the innocent– Ichigo Kurosaki
Live well, grow old well, grow bald well. The die long after I’ve died. But if possible, die with a smile on your face.– Isshin Kurosaki
There are two different kinds of battle. We must always be careful to distinguish between the two. There is the battle to protect innocent life and then there is the battle to reserve ones honour.– Jūshirō Ukitake