Release the Death Blow!
Kanji 必殺の一撃を放て!
Romanji Hissatsu no ichigeki o hanate!
Episode Number 27
Manga Chapters Chapter 88, Chapter 89
Arc Soul Society: The Sneak Entry arc
Previous Episode Formation! The Worst Tag
Next Episode Orihime Targeted
Japanese April 12, 2005
English March 25, 2007
Theme Music
Opening D-tecnoLife
Ending Houkiboshi
Episode 27 Screenshots

Release the Death Blow! is the twenty-seventh episode of the Bleach anime.

Ichigo Kurosaki and his friends continue to progress through Seireitei.



Yoruichi watches Shinigami from a roof-top.

Inside the Seireitei, a gong is being sounded and orders given for group 4 to detour to the west quarter and group 3 to go to the south quarter and seize the Ryoka on sight. Yoruichi Shihōin, standing on a roof, watches as Shinigami run past below, the leader urging his team on so that another group doesn't find the Ryoka before them. They run into a dead end and promptly run back out and start a little quarrel as Yoruichi runs down the roof.


Shinigami rushes past a smaller worker, disorientating him.

A Shinigami with a tray of food in his hands makes his way along the corridor, a very blank look on his face as others run past him. A whole group comes at him, demanding that he move out of the way, which he cannot do in time and is therefore spun around as they pass him, saying that he is only 4th Division so not to get in their way and asking if he can even do chores right. The rotation stops and he walks, taking large steps, into a nearby room, calling to Rukia Kuchiki the chair that she normally occupies in the cell is empty. He calls out Rukia's name, and is heard by a female Shinigami, whom he asks about Rukia, who he has been assigned to look after. She informs him that Rukia has already been transferred over to the Shishinrō, and he starts to shiver in disbelief. She continues to say that there have been orders to search for the Ryoka that have infiltrated the Seireitei, so he should return to his squad immediately, and walks out of the room. He stares after her as the tray falls from his hands. The subject of his thoughts is looking out the slit of a window at the Sōkyoku, wondering what the light that morning had been. She cannot sense spirit power, but wonders if it really is Ichigo.

Ichigo is still fighting 3rd Seat Ikkaku Madarame, who comments that Ichigo is just bragging as Ichigo pronounces that this time, Ikkaku will be the one unable to hold his weapon. Ikkaku wonders where Ichigo's confidence is coming from and flicks Hōzukimaru at Ichigo, who blocks it with Zangetsu. Ikkaku disappears and runs at him again, from a different direction this time, and saying that Ichigo is too slow. Ichigo just barely blocks the end of Hōzukimaru with Zangetsu, but the impact causes him to lose his balance and almost fall. He attacks Ikkaku this time, catching Hōzukimaru at the chain, but Ikkaku re-joins those two sections of Hōzukimaru, and uses the remaining section to swing at Ichigo, who evades by leaning back. Hōzukimaru, now a full spear, continues to come at Ichigo at different angles, its wielder mocking Ichigo's earlier words about him being unable to hold his weapon, saying that it’ll be Ichigo unable to hold his weapon, again. Hōzukimaru's chain coils itself around Zangetsu twice, allowing Ikkaku the opportunity to pull Zangetsu down and kick Ichigo in the face. As Hōzukimaru comes smashing down on Ichigo once more, Zangetsu knocks it back, stunning Ikkaku and this time allowing Ichigo the opportunity to laugh and mock his opponent for calling him slow. Ikkaku says that Ichigo is slow – that was merely luck. So Ichigo declares to show Ikkaku something that isn't luck, but the former jumps away onto the roof before Ichigo can do anything, saying that he told him he was slow.

Ichigo sticks his sword into the wall on whose roof Ikkaku stands, drawing a line across it to make the ground under Ikkaku's feet fall away. Ichigo attacks Ikkaku, but the latter jumps away and Ichigo is greeted with an unavoidable Hōzukimaru in his face, which he blocks with his bare hand. Ikkaku swings Hōzukimaru like a helicopter blade and laughs at Ichigo, who is sprawled on the floor, asking him if his mouth is the only part of him that can run, as Hōzukimaru's attacks can change in an instant and an amateur such as Ichigo wouldn't be able to keep up. Ichigo, getting to his feet, disagrees, saying that his eyes are finally used to seeing his attacks, and opens his fist, from which drops scraps of red cloth – the end of Hōzukimaru had been cracked by Ichigo's block. Ikkaku stares at his adversary in shock.

Meanwhile, Lieutenant Yachiru Kusajishi is directing her captain around as she rides on his back, and he remarks that he has been running for quite a while and yet has not seen anyone. Yachiru assures him that her instincts are really sharp, and promptly directs him right into a dead end. Still upbeat, she tells her annoyed captain to turn back and go a different direction, but he asks her if he can really trust those instincts of hers.


Orihime and Uryū flee from a horde of Shinigami.

Uryū Ishida and Orihime Inoue peek out from behind a wall, and on Uryū's command, duck back inside just as a group of Shinigami converge nearby, from which they would have been visible. Uryū comments that things have really gotten to serious – forget about Rukia's rescue, it’d be hard enough just trying to meet up with Ichigo and the rest. However, if a fight were to break out somewhere, they’d know one of them were there. He contemplates going and starting a fight, and seeks Orihime's opinion on the matter, only to see that she has disappeared. As he wonders where she could have gone, he hears his name and the pounding of footsteps as she appears behind him, trailed by two groups of Shinigami. He starts running too, and she apologizes for getting seen whilst scouting. He decides that since they've been found, they've no choice, but to fight. He stops, and she puts a hand on her hair, saying that she will fight too, but is stopped by Uryū, who asks her to leave this to him. Just then, another group of Shinigami come charging at them from another side, and yet another. Uryū decides that he can't take them all on and yells for Orihime to run, and they do, via the only exit available. The three different groups of Shinigami who were charging at them end up crashing into each other as they make their getaway. Sado, still sitting in a tree, sees the moving dust cloud and wondering if it is Ichigo, hops out of the tree and gives chase.

Ikkaku continues to stare at the red fabric off his Hōzukimaru on the floor, his eyes widening as Ichigo steps on them. Ichigo asks if he isn't being too surprised, and if he has lost the will to fight. If he won’t go, then he will. With that, he leaps into the air, reminding Ikkaku, who re-joins Hōzukimaru, that the next one unable to hold a weapon will be him. Ichigo destroys the chain between two of the sections of Hōzukimaru, spilling Ikkaku's blood. Ikkaku flings away the useless section of Hōzukimaru, asking Ichigo what is wrong and if that is all he has got, because, too bad – he's still able to hold Hōzukimaru. Holding on to one section of Hōzukimaru and swinging the other around, he tells Ichigo that if he does not want him to hold his weapon, the only way would be for him to take his arm. Ichigo asks him to lower Hōzukimaru, but Ikkaku will not, and Ichigo asks him once more, saying that the match is over and he (Ikkaku) has lost. Ikkaku continues to swing Hōzukimaru around, saying that this is a battle in which the difference between victory and defeat is life and death.

He charges at Ichigo, seeming to change his angle every few seconds. This is not the first time Ichigo has seen this technique – what he sees before him now is Kisuke Urahara and Benihime, not Ikkaku and Hōzukimaru, and he spits out two words, “Too slow!” and gives one powerful swing of Zangetsu. A line of blood is drawn all the way up Ikkaku's arm, who mutters that Ichigo is strong and that his own luck is bad before crumpling to the ground. Ichigo remarks that they both have bad luck as he stares at his bleeding arm, blood seeping through the bandages.


Ganju supports both his and Yumichika's weight over the pit.

Ganju stops running as he does not see Yumichika anywhere, wondering where the latter is. Yumichika runs stealthily along the roof behind him and jumps off with Fuji Kujaku ready to smash down on Ganju, but Ganju rolls away in time. Yumichika asks him how long he plans to run, and Ganju, his chopper in hand, says that he will until 5th Seat Yumichika Ayasegawa gives up. Yumichika sighs, asking Ganju Shiba to give him a break as he’s about fed up with him already, adding that he will end this now with Fuji Kujaku, opening it up into its fan form (into the four sickles, rather). Ganju sniggers and sheaths his chopper, putting his hand into the barrel over the scabbard and withdrawing what appears to be a bomb, which he strikes on the panels on his arm, saying that Yumichika is getting ahead of himself. As he drops the bomb on the floor, they are engulfed by red smoke, and Yumichika starts to tear and cough, complaining that it’s getting into his beautiful eyes. Ganju laughs, saying that this is Kūkaku brand Chili Pepper Smoke Bomb, strong enough to make you cry blood. He himself starts to tear and cough, and Yumichika says that he (Ganju) is too ugly, causing himself damage with his own tactic. Both try to walk out of the smoke cloud, Yumichika asking where Ganju is and Ganju saying that he wouldn't be able to catch him even in here. The two of them accidentally step off the ledge, falling into the pit. Ganju catches the ledge and Yumichika holds on to Ganju's bomb barrel. Ganju asks Yumichika to let go, but, of course, Yumichika will not.


Ikkaku's chest is partially healed after being attended to by Ichigo.

Ikkaku opens his eyes, an indignant look on his face as he asks why he is still alive. He sees Ichigo sitting near by, and asks why he is still here. Ichigo ignores the question and holds up Hōzukimaru, remarking that he never knew that when the wielder lost consciousness, the liberated Zanpakutō would return to its normal form. Ikkaku demands that Ichigo return Hōzukimaru, and Ichigo replies that he’s just using the cauterizing medicine, which, after being used on both himself and Ikkaku, was gone. Ikkaku looks down at his body, at his wounds covered in the ointment as Ichigo looks pleased and praises the medicine. Ikkaku is still angry, asking what the hell Ichigo has done, and Ichigo mistakes Ikkaku for being angry over the use of the styptic without permission. Ikkaku says that he thought it weird that he didn't die of excessive loss of blood, adding that it’s such a disgrace to have survived because Ichigo saved him, and if he could move, he’d beat Ichigo up. Ichigo comments that if he had known that Ikkaku would be enraged over this, he wouldn't have helped him in the first place. Either way, he doesn't care if Ikkaku is grateful or not – he just wants answers. Ikkaku agrees to answer his questions, asking Ichigo if he’d like to know his birthday. Ichigo goes straight to the point, asking for “Rukia Kuchiki's location”.


The pit turns out to be a garbage dump.

Ganju complains that his hand is at its limit, asking Yumichika to let go and the latter begging him not to let go – if they fall inside… Ganju remembers Yumichika telling him that those who fall inside could never climb back out, but he cannot hold on any more. His hand slips and the two fall, screaming into… bags of trash? Ganju emerges from the trash bags, calling out that he doesn't want to die and for someone to come save him. The smell of the rubbish wafts into his nose and Yumichika also gets up, brushing off bits of garbage from his beautiful hair as Ganju demands to know why he had said that no one would be able to climb out once they fell in this place. Yumichika finds it of more importance to find out why Ganju had dropped someone as beautiful as he into this place, adding that he’ll never forgive Ganju and punctuating that sentence with a swing of Fuji Kujaku, which Ganju dodges. Ganju climbs up the ladder and runs off, Yumichika as usual close behind him.

As Rukia sits by the window, Ikkaku asks Ichigo if he means the death row inmate, and what he has to do with that trash. Ichigo, a scary, intimidating look on his face declares that he’s come to save Rukia, and Ikkaku asks how many of them had come. Meanwhile, Uryū and Orihime are cleverly dodging Shinigami, Sado continuing to run in the direction he thinks Ichigo is and Yoruichi running along a roof and looking around. Ikkaku assumes that there’d be at least 7 or 8 of them, laughing till he cries and his wounds opens when he hears that despite there being only 5 and a half of them, Ichigo still believes that he can save Rukia. Ikkaku tells Ichigo how to get to Rukia, saying that south of where they are each of the Gotei 13 offices, and at the west end of that is a tall, pure-white tower. Rukia should be inside that. Ichigo doubts Ikkaku's words, and the latter promises that his information is correct as he doesn't care what they do with Rukia anyway, so if he wants to, go save her. He reminds Ichigo that if he stands around here, he'll get found by others, and Ichigo stands, saying that he owes Ikkaku one. Ikkaku instead asks him to cut the mushy crap and not to owe him anything. As Ichigo walks off, Ikkaku asks him who is the strongest among that 5 and a half of them, and when Ichigo answers that it is probably he, Ikkaku warns him to be careful of his captain, who isn't interested in weaklings, and will most probably be after Ichigo since he is the strongest. Ichigo asks if his captain is strong, and Ikkaku replies that he’ll see for himself – that is, if he can live long enough to comprehend his strength. Ichigo asks for his name, and Ikkaku replies that it is 11th Division captain, Kenpachi Zaraki.

Elsewhere, Kenpachi thanks Yachiru, who has met with yet another dead end, but Yachiru denies responsibility, pushing everything onto his shoulders. Zaraki, being obliging, just says that they’ll go to the next one.

Kon-sama's Ultimate Shinigami Illustrated Guide

The featured character is Yachiru Kusajishi.

Characters in order of appearance

  1. Hanatarō Yamada
  2. Rukia Kuchiki
  3. Ichigo Kurosaki
  4. Ikkaku Madarame
  5. Kenpachi Zaraki
  6. Yachiru Kusajishi
  7. Uryū Ishida
  8. Orihime Inoue
  9. Yasutora Sado
  10. Ganju Shiba
  11. Yumichika Ayasegawa


Powers and Techniques used

Techniques Used:

Zanpakutō Released:



Formation! The Worst TagOrihime Targeted