The sad thing is that this is an episode with a lot of potential that it fails to live up to. I mean you have this big budget spent on the fight between Byakuya and Koga and they STILL spend half of it talking without exchanging too many interesting blows. And then you have Byakuya give his reason for betraying the soul society and trying to tie up that whole plot point but find his whole explanation filled with plotholes. I mean you can tell they meant for this to be a big episode when they forewent actually having much of a previously on bit and skip straight to the action but even then there's still a lot of time spent in flashbacks. Still though despite not being a great epsiode I thought it was at least fairly good.
First off I think Byakuya's reasoning kind of makes sense. Since you have to remember, Byakuya is a guy who is fueled by not only pride but also arrogance. And in this case wanting to follow the promise to his grandfather in killing Koga if he ever comes up and not just having him sealed again. And yeah maybe he could of told Soul Society what was happening and why Yamamoto was captured and just who Muramasa was if he knew about Koga but you also have to remember t is like Byakuya to keep these things. Plus I think for him it's kind of a chance to actually play the villain for once and actually get to go against Soul Society since after what happened in the Soul Society arc, Byakuya's whole "wanting to uphold the rules" side has been shooken some and allowed to altered. Besides at least this BOTHERS connecting all the Byakuya scenes from this arc better then ultimately Muramasa's reasoning was which if you broke it down made much less sense then what Byakuya did.
And yeah though like I said the fight didn't have too many good contact blows there was a lot of great fludity to it. Espiecally Byakuya's use of Kido and Koga using the senses bit and the clashes in Byakuya's inner world. As for why Koga's so strong despite being so old, I don't know isn't that something Bleach always does: the strongest captains are the oldest ones and besides Ichigo everyone's super awesome because of the years/decades/centuries they were training? Yeah I guess he was sealed away for years but still sealed with his power it seems and if he was a threat that needed the commander captain to take care of and seal him he had to have been strong so it makes sense he was on captain's level. I think Byakuya took care of him with that final charge but guess we'll see next time. But like I said I think the biggest problem was the lack of big hits and all the talking. The stuff about Byakuya and Senbonzakura working together against Koga being alone worked but otherwise way too much chatter for an opponent like Koga who is acting fairly just one dimeinsonally power driven at this point.
Overall a good episode and even though not a great one probably one of the better ones of this arc since trust me we're coming up to one of the worst parts of it pretty soon.
Man now I"m up to 7,000+ posts. Hard to believe it took me 8 something years to get that many. How long will it take me to get another thousand? Guess you're going to have to keep reading what I have to say to find out.... I hope you've been doing that anyway as I feed off the attention.