Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War is gaining momentum with each passing episode, and finally in episode 5 of the anime, the head captain, Genryusai Yamamoto enters the fray in hopes of turning the tide of the battle.
While he successfully defeats the Sternritter O, the overkill, we notice that the old man is missing an arm, or more precisely, his left arm. This can be seen clearly in the episode 6 preview, where he prepares to take on Yhwach.
It’s been some time since the last season of Bleach anime aired, and if you are on this page, then just like many others out there, you too need a recap on how exactly Genryusai Yamamoto lost his arm. So without further ado, let’s take a look at the answer.
How did Genryusai Yamamoto lose his arm?
To answer in short, Genryusai Yamamoto lost his arm, as he sacrificed it to perform the forbidden kido technique, Hado 96, Itto Kaso on Aizen in the Fake Karakura town arc.
If this wasn’t enough to jog your memory, let’s take a trip down the memory lane.
In the Fake Karakura town arc, the old man Yamamoto had set up an extensive plan, in order to trap Aizen. After catching his attention, Yamamoto lets Aizen stab him with his Zanpakuto. But this was only a ploy to detect the real Aizen by sensing the Reiatsu on his zanpakuto.
He planned to trap Aizen in his Ennetsu Jigoku and kill him, while sacrificing his life in the process. However, before his plan could succeed, Wonderweiss Margela appears behind him and foils everything.
As Aizen explains, Wonderweiss was solely modified so that he could counter Yamamoto’s zanpakuto, the Ryujin Jakka. In the ensuing battle, Yamamoto goes on to obliterate Wonderweiss just by using his bare strength. However, Wonderweiss had sealed the flames from Ryujin Jakka in its body, and the body being destroyed, led to a large scale explosion.
However, the head captain supresses the damage of the explosion with his body and injures himself. Aizen takes this opportunity to eliminate Yamamoto once and for all, however, as he descends on his foe, the old man grabs his ankle.
His hand was already charred thanks to the explosion caused by Wonderweiss, and he uses the hand as a sacrifice to cast the Hado 96. Itto Kaso. As the spell his cast, his hand becomes greatly damaged.
Why did Yamamoto use the Hado 96?
Yamamoto was hellbent on killing Aizen. He did not want to take any chances with it. It is possible that he could have used any other Hado and inflicted damage on Aizen and protect his arm.
However, he was already injured after bearing the brunt of Ryujin Jakka’s explosion. And Aizen was bearing down to kill him with his Zanpakuto. While, I won’t term this move a desperate one, it was more of a calculated sacrifice to take down his opponent, who, in his eyes, could not be let to survive anymore.
However, the fact that Aizen was able to dodge that, tells us that Yamamoto was not going for an overkill. For an enemy like Aizen, assurance of a win came before caution. As far as the head captain was concerned, he was ready to sacrifice himself to kill Aizen, so losing an arm was not that big of a deal for him at that moment.
Now, there’s another important question that comes to the mind of fans, regarding Yamamoto’s lost arm. We see that his injuries are healed a few days after the battle with Aizen, but his arm never gets healed, or more importantly Orihime doesn’t do anything about it.
Even Yhwach has the same question.
Why didn’t Orihime heal Yamamoto’s arm?
Yamamoto did not let Orihime heal his arm because he did not want to exploit the humans to do his bidding. The old man has always been a person who did not like humans interfering in the matters of the soul society. He only let Ichigo and the others take part in the battle against Aizen, because there was no other option.
Yhwach explains this in TYBW in chapter 511 as prepared to land a fatal blow on Yamaji.
We can’t entirely blame Yamamoto for this stance because, the more humans are involved in the matters of the Soul Society, the more it would tend to cause an imbalance.
But, Orihime is just one human. What’s wrong in letting her help? What’s wrong in using all resources available at hand to heal yourself, incase an adversary like Aizen shows up again? Well, Yhwach does show up and we know what happens.
This is where the old man’s pride comes into play. He probably preferred carrying the scars of his battle, rather than being healed by a human.
Do you think it was foolish for Yamamoto to not heal his arm? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!!