Bleach Episode 10: Heroes Can Save You
by Hikaru no Michiru
December 6th, 2004
Corresponds with “Bleach”
Vol. 3, Chapters 27 - 32
Opening: Asterisk, by
Ending: Life is Like a Boat,
by Rie Fu
Drop-In Holy Ground! The hit reality show all the kids at
school are talking about! Don Kon’anji, a T.V. spiritualist,
exorcises ‘mean spirits’ every week when he drops into a
random location, and this week it's a hospital in Ichigo's
town. Ichigo refuses to go on the basis he finds it to be a very
stupid show. He shows up anyway.
Don Kon'anji, tv super star.
After an entrance by Don Kon’anji, the audience makes their
way to the hospital for the show. On the way over, Orohime
apologizes to Ichigo for asking him to come, since she just
found out from Tatsuki that he hates these kinds of shows.
Ichigo’s fine with it, and he says he came since his dad and
sisters are such huge fans. It would be sad to let them go
by themselves. Orohime goes on to catch up to Tatsuki,
leaving Ichigo alone with the newly arrived Rukia. Rukia
jests with Ichigo that his battles with hollows are going to
be harder from now on, and he should use this time to relax.
Ominous words in any anime, mind you.
“If Don Kon’anji is going exorcise a ghost, why haven’t the
soul reapers taken care of it all ready?”
Rukia explains that the ghosts that haunt locals such as
these tend to be earth-bound ghosts, ghosts chained to their
location and almost never show up on Soul Society sensors. She goes
on to explain that there is only one condition for
earth-bound spirits to show themselves: when the living
enters their territory. Ghostly screaming fills the air,
only to be heard by Ichigo and a few of his associates. It
sounds like a hollow’s, but not quite. The process of
becoming a hollow is a painful one, and judging from the
pain in this ghost’s scream, he is months from becoming a
danger. Ichigo notices it feels like a hollow, but it
doesn’t have the white mask, and the hole in his chest isn’t
open yet. Rukia explains the hole in a hollow’s chest is a
mark they have lost their heart and become an embodiment of
instinct. The mask shields the exposed instinct from the
physical world. Enough hollow talk, the show is starting.
A spirit chained to the hospital.
Don Kon’anji thrusts his ‘spirit stick’ into the earth-bound
spirit’s hole, twisting and turning as it screams in pain.
Rukia and Ichigo realize this will speed up the hollow
process, makes an attempt to stop the T.V. star, only to be
grabbed by Security. A cane suddenly separates Ichigo’s soul
from his body. He turns to see Urahara (with the cane) and
his employees, who have come to see the show. Ichigo rushes
to the scene, and knocks Kon’anji to the ground. Kon’anji
deduces Ichigo must be fan so loyal that he’s following his
idol even after the grave. No time for proper introductions,
the ghost behind them just exploded into nothing. When a
hollow forms, it disperses and recollects somewhere else. As
the crowd praises their hero, a frog hollow appears atop the
hospital. The hollow leaps down to strike. Ichigo knocks it
away, and tells Kon’anji to run away. Kon’anji refuses,
telling Ichigo he should run away. Before froggy can
retaliate, Ichigo drags the TV medium into the abandoned
hospital for a timeout.
Kon’anji explains that the reason he can’t run away, is
because he’s a hero. His show gets 25% of the ratings, which
means one out of every four people in Japan is watching.
Most of those people are children. They watch his adventures every week, and their
hearts dance. They watch him go against spirits, and learn
something of courage. When they’re watching, he cannot run
away. While the two decide to fight inside to not endanger
the public, the frog hollow pops into the hallway. Ichigo
takes a swing at it, only to get his sword stuck in the
wall. These hallways are too narrow, which means he can’t
swing his sword. The frog hollow launches green goo from his
mouth, sticking Ichigo’s hands together with his sword
(which means he can’t aim right).
Their battle continues to the roof.* Ichigo gets pinned to
the railing by the hollow’s goo. The hollow leaps to devour
him, only to be
The hero for the children.
stopped by Kon’anji, who thrust his spirit
stick between its teeth to save the boy. As Kon’anji’s
spirit stick cracks, he fires a ball of light, releasing
Ichigo from the grasp of the goo. Ichigo
makes quick work of the frog hollow. Kon’anji leaps for joy
over a glorious victory, but Ichigo tells him to quit it and
look at the felled hollow. Kon’anji witnesses the white mask
dissipate, revealing the face of the man he had been
‘exorcising’ earlier. Ichigo reveals the truth behind
hollows to the bewildered TV star. Kon'anji falls to
Kon'anji steps in.
knees in guilt. All this time, he’s done nothing but make
monsters of good people, all the while the crowd cheers Kon’anji’s name. Ichigo tells him to get up, and face the
children who find bravery in him, who are chanting his name
right now. That’s what a hero does. With new
found courage, Kon’anji gets to his feet and fills the crowd
with the sensation of a happy ending.
Don Kon'anji, a hero.
*This events in this battle went in a slightly different order in the manga, but all in all it’s the same fight.
Back to Pojo's Bleach Section