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 How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?

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PostSubject: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Tue Oct 05, 2010 5:18 pm

There’s always been this big question mark hanging over Yoruichi since the events of the Turn Back the Pendulum Arc were revealed. Specifically, just how much did she know about what Urahara was doing and how much was she involved with it? The only real insight we get comes in the form of the short conversation that follows Yoruichi rescuing Urahara and Tessai. To save you all the trouble, I will provide a transcript of SleepyFan’s translation.

Quote :
U: …Th…Thank you…Yoruichi.
Y: No need to thank me. And I’ll refrain for the moment from kicking you for not taking me with you last night. …I brought all of them here, along with the new “gigai” you were working on. Now get on with it. With the best solution to the worst situation. That you’d thought of since you first heard about this from Hirako.
U: …So you know everything. What an unpleasant person.
Y: Your one to talk.
U: Tessai, please cast temporal suspension on Hirako and the others. And the create a 2-3 layer barrier around us. Within 20 hours, I’ll make gigais for the 2 of us, as well as Hirako and the others, in order to quarantine our soul powers.
T: What about Yoruichi?
Y: Don’t worry about me. I’ll escape somehow.
U: We’ll hide out on earth and take out time solving this. I swear I’ll find a way to reverse this “Hollofication.”

In this short dialogue, two keep pieces of information are presented.

The first, and perhaps most important, is Urahara’s lamentation “So you know everything.” This indicates that Urahara was not sharing information with Yoruichi and may have been actively trying to hide information from her, as “What an unpleasant person” is likely a reference to her spying.

The other important piece of information comes from Teassai when he asks “What about Yoruichi?” This question means that the plan that Urahara set up prior, about the gigais and take their time solving the problem, did not include Yoruichi. Yoruichi’s follow up of “Don’t worry about me. I’ll escape somehow” further draws a clear distinction between Urahara and Tessai’s actions and Yoruichi’s.

When this is all taken into account, the biggest question becomes what did Yoruichi know when? Specifically, what did she know before Urahara went to the Maggot’s nest?

If she was fully informed at the time Urahara went to the Maggot’s Nest, then her dismissal of Sui-Feng’s concerns were active help from her; help that even Urahara was unaware of, as he was not including Yoruichi in his plans.

There is also the possibility Yoruichi did not investigate Urahara until he went to the Maggot’s Nest without authorization. Personally, I find this option rather unlikely, given the nature of Yoruichi’s position.

So the question then becomes why did Yoruichi take the course of action she chose? To me, there are 3 options.

A)Plausible Deniability: Just because Yoruichi knew about what Urahara was doing doesn’t mean that she told her superiors about it. Urahara might have been successful enough in hiding his activities that only Yoruichi knew, and if she didn’t report them, then she would receive no orders to take action.

B)Yoruichi set Urahara up: Perhaps Urahara and Yoruichi had discussed Hollowfication in the past and Yoruichi had an interest in it that she never expressed to him. She suggested him for the Captaincy knowing full well that he would likely use his new position to further research the process of strengthening souls. She kept an eye on him, which he seems to have been unaware of, and allowed him to move about uninhibited so he could go about his work as speedily as possible. She intervened in the end only out of her own self interest. Given the recent turn the series has taken, I find this option highly unlikely.

C)Yoruichi was unaware of the full extent of Urahara’s research: Just because she knew Urahara was up to something, doesn’t mean she knew exactly what that something was. He was her Third Seat, after all, so he is likely very skilled in stealth and hiding information. Because Yoruichi didn’t have all the information, she was not in a position to act until things went all the way bad. As a result, she had such a guilty conscious over the fact that 8 innocent lives were ruined because of her inaction and seemingly poor intelligence gathering that she saved Urahara’s life not because of any friendship between them, but because he was the only one that could mitigate the harm done to Shinji and the others.

To me, option C seems the most likely reason, for 3 reasons; Yoruichi finding her own way out, the way Yoruichi interacts with Urahara in chapter 51 and the rest of the manga, and the way Yoruichi interacts with Sui-Feng during the beginning of their fight.

The fact that Yoruichi choose to find her own way out after she rescued Urahara and Tessai says to me that she felt that she wasn’t in any danger at that time. If she felt that her situation was as dire as the rest of theirs, then she would have just left with them. The fact that she does not indicates that she likely though that her situation was still salvageable. At the time, her name was still in the clear, as the Central 46 tribunal was not able to identify her when she interpreted the trial. It is not until the next day, when she is still missing that she is declared a traitor. Unaware of this, Yoruichi likely though she could walk back to the Gotie 13 and act as if she had gone on an evening stroll. After all, she had not technically done anything wrong, in her mind at least, and since she was not identified by the Central 46 at the trial, her being branded a traitor is likely Aizen’s doing.

This idea is reinforced by her interactions with Urahara in chapter 51, where she is first introduced. She is very snappy and business-like with Urahara, hardly the tone friends use. This continues in all their other interacts. Yoruichi is condescending and sometimes just mean to the man. To m, this reeks of resentment and bitterness. Yoruichi lost her position, al her power and her future, because of him, so it’s understandable that she would be mad at him because. The only reason she continues to associate with the man is again because of her guilty conscious, as he’s the only one that can fix the mess.

The last piece of evidence is how she interacts with Sui-Feng in the beginning of their fight. Yoruichi jokes and teases Sui-Feng, smiling all the while, a sharp contrast with the way she treated Urahara. Yoruichi seems to act as if very little time has passed between them, and more importantly, as if Sui-Feng was happy to see her. The blows they trade are just a student showing their master how far they’ve come in their absence. It’s not until Sui-Feng releases Suzumebachi and marks Yoruichi with a homonka that Yoruichi realizes that she was serious about her training for a century to capture her herself. And Yoruichi seems genuinely shocked by this, as if she had expected Sui-Feng to figure out that Yoruichi hadn’t done anything wrong herself or at least for her to get the benefit of the doubt.

When taking all this into account, Yoruichi seems almost to be a bystandard; caught in Aizen and Urahara’s wake, just struggling to do what she thinks is right.

What do you people think? Am I on to something or wildly off base? Or am I drawing the wrong conclusions from the right evidence?

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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:18 pm

I'm going to have to agree with option C. You pretty much mention all things I would have to back myself up, so you're not alone on the idea.
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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:32 pm

I like option C the most as well. I think Yoruichi just ended up in a totally fucked up position, and did what she thought was the best choice under the circumstances.
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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Wed Oct 06, 2010 8:19 pm

EDIT: Above post deleted for violation of rule 3.
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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:05 pm

Sorry, Sorry. I like C because it the option that makes the most sense, based on the behavioral patterns I've observed Yoruichi and Urahara exhibit throughout this wonderful series called Bleach...


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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:14 pm

If I may derail for a moment - When you give your thoughts, you're the one giving your two cents. So, we wouldn't be paying you, regardless. :) But thank you for attempting a well thought out answer instead of just posting "C."
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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Thu Oct 07, 2010 12:45 am

I'd like to go with option C, it's sound the best I think
I still had my doubt though, since I find Yoruichi's personality is very hard to determine, somehow I just had a thought of Yoruichi is just another character which can be placed anywhere if there's a empty slot, be as a guide, as a trainer, as an information filler to another character, etc *like someone has pointed it before*

but to be honest, I also like to mention the possibility of Kubo lost his way from the original plot, that'll somehow explain the continuity error in the series, =__=)/

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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:03 am

Sometimes I wonder if Yoruichi is now just eyecandy, like Rangiku. Both started out semi-important to the plot (Yoruichi as a guide/mentor and Rangiku as Hitsugaya's assisstant during the "Investigate the Mysterious Happenings in Soul Society" sub-plot of the "Rescue" Arc. But now both have been demoted. Come to think of it, pretty much everyone (even Ichigo) has been demoted.
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PostSubject: Re: How Much And What Did Yoruichi Know A Century Ago?   Thu Oct 07, 2010 1:32 am

kumo wrote:
I'd like to go with option C, it's sound the best I think
I still had my doubt though, since I find Yoruichi's personality is very hard to determine, somehow I just had a thought of Yoruichi is just another character which can be placed anywhere if there's a empty slot, be as a guide, as a trainer, as an information filler to another character, etc *like someone has pointed it before*

but to be honest, I also like to mention the possibility of Kubo lost his way from the original plot, that'll somehow explain the continuity error in the series, =__=)/

I think you've hit the nail on the head. Yoruichi is such an underdeveloped character because Kubo likely didn't anticipate how long the series would go on and how important Yoruichi would end up being.

I've always felt that all the back-story added to the characters that existed before the end of the SS arc felt tacked on. Yoruichi's wasn't all that important in the SS arc, or at least her past wasn't, so there wasn't much time spared on her.

But now that the series has continued, you have to start looking at things holistically. And the image that you get of Yoruichi when look at Bleach as a whole is rather scattered and unfocused, which is what makes the scenes like the one above so important.

Crimson Warrior wrote:
Sometimes I wonder if Yoruichi is now just eyecandy, like Rangiku. Both started out semi-important to the plot (Yoruichi as a guide/mentor and Rangiku as Hitsugaya's assisstant during the "Investigate the Mysterious Happenings in Soul Society" sub-plot of the "Rescue" Arc. But now both have been demoted. Come to think of it, pretty much everyone (even Ichigo) has been demoted.

I think there is something to that, given how important Urahara has become in the recent chapters. For the most part, Urahara and Yoruichi operated as a unit. But Yoruichi was no where to be found when Urahara sealed Aizen. I don't think it's too much of a strech to assume that Yoruichi has finally suffered the fate of all women of Bleach and has been pushed in to the supporting sphere.

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