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Ah, Tite Kubo's Bleach. The delightfully popular shonen with many interesting characters, abilities and factions of soldiers. Considering the sheer bureaucracy of the groups, you'd expect there to be impressive strategies and tactics incorporating the great variation of abilities in series, would you not?

In a word, no.

  • In Bleach almost every sword fight will end with one character severely injuring or incapacitating their opponent.
    You'd expect The winner would finish off the loser, or at the very least, check to make sure they're actually dead.
    Instead The winner will always make some snide comment about how badly the loser was fucked over, and leave them for dead.
  • An example of these lapses in judgment is when Aizen, the Big Bad, brings a small contingent of his Arrancar troops to the battlefield, and are met by an even smaller contingent of the Soul Reapers. Considering Aizen's goal is only to become a god, and Soul Society seeks to protect peace, justice, and the American Dead Japanese way, this fight should be sufficiently epic.
    You'd expect The Arrancar to smash the Soul Reapers with their superior numbers and abilities, exploiting the weaknesses of Aizen's former comrades. In turn, the Soul Reapers, who we are told got stronger since last time they fought Aizen's goons, would fight together at once and not let their pride hold them back. Thus, both sides would trounce each other at full strength before the other becomes a major threat.
    Instead The fights are all one on one; the strongest Arrancar just sit and watch their enforcers fight the Soul Reapers, and don't even step in till they're all dead. Meanwhile, all but one Soul Reaper draws out their fight for nothing more than pride. Even Ukitake and Kyoraku, two of the eldest and wisest captains, merely toy with team Starrk instead of killing them. They nearly die because of it. Head Captain Yamamoto, meanwhile, who could likely wipe out almost all enemies in one strike, only steps in in after he lets FIVE straight Lieutenants nearly be killed, and complains the entire time. With the exception of the Magnificent Bastard, each side seems to be doing every possible action to lose this war.
  • Aizen, Kyoraku, and Shinji, among others, have Superpower Lottery abilities that basically make them impossible to beat without knowing what the mechanism behind their skills is.
    You'd expect These people would shut their mouths and exploit their advantages.
    Instead They explain, in needless detail, exactly what their abilities do, essentially telling their opponents how to get around them. Oftentimes they will do this entirely unprompted, and Shinji gets bonus points for doing it before attacking (he did leave out one detail, but then explained that, too). In Shinji's case, he got a decent sword wound for his idiocy.
  • Then there's two Arrancar, Loly and Menoly, whom Aizen assigns to bring Orihime to an audience with him. The two develop an instant dislike of their captive and attempt to kill her, but are thwarted by Grimmjow's Kick the Son of a Bitch moment. A little while later, Orihime shows them some mercy by bringing them back to full capacity...
    You'd expect that the two of them thank Orihime for her kindness by swearing off their vendetta against her. After all, both are deathly afraid of Aizen, and would not like it when he's angry. Or even if they don't thank her, since her power makes her look like a monster in their view, they could still keep themselves away from her if only to avoid trouble with Aizen.
    Instead The two wait until Grimmjow's not looking, and during Ichigo's battle with Ulquiorra, attempt to kill Orihime again. In case the previous sentence did not fully compute, it must be emphasized that they do this during the battle when the two are literally in the same room. This earns them scorn from Ulquiorra and Yammy, the latter of whom kills one of them, and the one that was more offending had to be saved by the enemy again. Anyone else sense a round three coming up?
  • Let us not forget the infamous incident early in the "Rescue Orihime" arc, where Ichigo and friends come to a series of different passageways in Las Noches, and have to decide where to go.
    You'd expect them to pick one pathway (since they don't know where any of them lead), and stick together. After all, they're in the middle of an enemy hide-out they know nothing about, the enemy has superior numbers (and superior firepower on a one-to-one basis), and since it's a rescue mission, they need to get Orihime and get the hell out of dodge - which would be delayed if they had to go tracking down scattered team members.
    Instead they split up due to comments from Rukia and Renji about "warriors not fearing death" (never mind that they're on a rescue mission, not to get into Epic Fights... in-universe, that is), something that is so idiotic that Ichigo (of all people) points out how stupid an idea it is. Yet everybody goes along with it, and the exactly predictable happens - they get split up, and attacked separately. The only thing that saves them is that Aizen, instead of simply overwhelming them with his superior numbers and firepower, sets them up in one-on-one battles, most likely because his motive is to draw other Soul Reapers into his trap using Ichigo and friends as bait.
  • Urahara knew Aizen would take an interest in Orihime's powers as a means to activate the dormant Hogyoku.
    You'd Expect: Mister Hat And Clogs would explain to her up front what Aizen no doubt has planned for her and insist that she stay at his shop where, if Aizen's mooks come to get her, they'll first have to contend with him, Yoruichi, Tessai, Ururu, Jinta, Renji, Chad, and the mod souls.
    Instead: He makes her feel useless because her one and only means of attack broke, prompting her to go off to one of the Vizards to get it repaired, go to the Soul Society to train with Rukia, and then get kidnapped on the way back to the world of the living. All the while, he didn't so much as keep tabs on her whereabouts and/or status.
  • Shinji's idiocy in revealing his powers deserves a double mention. Shinji reveals his shikai, which Aizen has never seen and can screw with senses as much as Aizen's can. Oh, he also gets probably the first clean hit on the Big Bad in the series.
    You'd expect Shinji to use this fact to his advantage, say nothing about what it does, and attack Aizen the second he releases it. Then in the few seconds Aizen is trying to put two and two together about Shinji's abilities, Shinji cuts his head off and ends the series.
    Instead Shinji merely explains every last detail to Aizen, which lets the guy figure out how to counter Shinji's powers and grievously injure Shinji in return. Also, when Shinji gets the first blow on Aizen, having at least had the common sense to leave out one detail of his power, he aims for the freaking shoulder to screw around with Aizen a bit!
  • Shinji's stupidity in revealing his powers deserves a third mention. He has just hit Aizen and has explained the only thing at the moment that Aizen didn't know about his powers, and the only thing keeping Aizen from beating him. But as we learn later he has another ability he has yet to use, that he can pick and choose what sense is reversed.
    You'd expect He use that third ability, Aizen just showed he adapts quickly to change, but only if he knows about it first. By using this ability he could Mind Screw Aizen and kill him before he catches on.
    Instead He doesn't use the ability at all, because he assumes Aizen won't be able to adapt to the change to his senses. He thinks this although not but a page before, Aizen had correctly guessed where Shinji was and the only reason why Aizen didn't cut Shinji down was the trick that he had just went out of his way to explain.
  • Aizen has Story-Breaker Power illusion abilities. He can control your sense to any degree.
    You'd Expect: Blind everybody with pain/deafening noise or just blind them then lop their heads off.
    Instead: Aizen goes about plotting to send other people to try to lop their heads off, and he doesn't even use his abilities on a regular basis.
  • During Byakuya's fight with Zommari
    You'd Expect: Zommari to simply attack Byakuya, kill Rukia, kill Hanataro, and leave, right?
    Instead: Zommari explains each of his attacks to Byakuya, including the total number of items/body parts/whatever he can control. All. Before. He. Does. It. What a freaking idiot!
    Also of note: Zommari and Byakuya keep calling each other arrogant a lot during this fight, at least in the anime. This actually means that Zommari got himself both verbally and literally killed by being more arrogant than Byakuya.
  • Fourth Espada Ulquiorra has a second release which could pretty much end the war right there and then.
    You'd Expect: That he would tell Aizen about it, show off, and get the war over with.
    Instead: He hides it from his commander, potentially putting his life in danger for lying. This is one of the many things that screws the Arrancars over.
    Also of Note: And unless Ulquiorra makes a trek to the middle of no where, there is no reason for the other Arrancars to tell Aizen what the hell the ocean-like reiatsu and the towering explosions are. Hell, even if Ulquiorra DOES walk all the way out to somewhere, SOMEONE should see the explosions that are done from him practicing his aim!
  • Zanpakuto Filler Arc Villain Muramasa comes to the world of the living. Orihime sees him there and goes to him, and not only does she reveal in the ensuing conversation that she knows he's Ichigo's enemy, but Uryu and Chad are backing her up in the shadows. CLEARLY they've been expecting him.
    You'd Expect: Orihime to call Chad and Uryu over, or them to tell her to get out of the way, leading to them coming out and finishing Muramasa then and there.
    Instead: Orihime heals the man she knows is the enemy, and Chad and Uryu don't even come out until after he's gotten up and attacked her.
    The result: A complete asshole is freed from a stabbed and chained coffin.
  • Ivan Azgiaro unleashes an onslaught against Ichigo, attacking him relentlessly and stating the only way Ichigo could ever hope to beat him is by using his Bankai. It's so blatantly obvious that he's goading him that even Ichigo himself realizes that Ivan is goading him into using his Bankai for some reason, so...
    You'd Expect: Ichigo to tell Ivan to screw off and continue to fight with his Shikai, not falling in Ivan's plan.
    Instead: HE FREAKIN' USES HIS BANKAI and almost has the damn thing stolen from him.