Right as people thought bleach fans would have been left in the dust for the ninth consecutive year, Tite Kubo, the author revealed the Bleach anime return plans.
On the 20th anniversary of Bleach, the creators of the show dropped a huge bomb when they announced that the show will return in 2021. Fans were told to expect a brand new season which would be a continuation from the anime’s last season.
The makers of the show reportedly confirmed that the brand new installment will be adapting the ‘Thousand-Year Blood War’ Arc. This is the last arc of the manga which means it will also give a conclusive end to the anime series.
The manga series ended on the 22nd of August in 2016, after the final chapter number 686 titled ‘Death and Strawberry’ was released.
Since Season 17 of Bleach is said to start from Chapter 367 of the manga, the anime has plenty of source material to fall back on.
Bleach Anime Return – Release Date
Bleach Anime Watch Order
Bleach started airing in October 2004, the series finalized the ending in March 2012 after episode 366 aired. Even though the anime might appear tiresome to a few newcomers, the timeline for Bleach isn’t all that complicated.
So far, the series has a confirmed total of 366 episodes, spanning over 16 seasons, 4 movies along with a live-action film, and 2 OVAs.
If you wish to rewatch the entire series or suggest a friend start, this is the recommended order to watch it.
- Season 1: The Substitute
- Bleach OVA: Memories in the Rain
- Season 2: The Entry
- Season 3: Soul Society: The Rescue
- Bleach OVA 2: The Sealed Sword Frenzy
- Season 4: The Bount
- Season 5: The Assault
- Season 6: The Arrancar
- Bleach Movie 1: Memories of Nobody
- Bleach Movie 2: The Diamond Dust Rebellion
- Season 7: The Arrancar Part 2: The Hueco Mundo Sneak Entry
- Bleach Movie 3: Fade to Black
- Season 8: The Arrancar Part 3: The Fierce Fight
- Season 9: The New Captain Shūsuke Amagai
- Season 10: The Arrancar Part 4: Arrancar vs. Soul Reaper
- Season 11: The Past
- Season 12: The Arrancar Part 5: Battle in Karakura
- Season 13: Zanpakutō: The Alternate Tale
- Season 14: The Arrancar Part 6: Fall of the Arrancar
- Bleach Movie 4: The Hell Verse
- Season 15: Gotei 13 Invading Army
- Season 16: The Lost Agent
The live-action film titled Bleach can be watched whenever as it recaps the anime till episode 17 of the series, albeit with an alternative ending.
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Bleach Anime Main Characters
There are so many characters in Bleach that the anime does not have any fixed Main Characters except Ichigo, the protagonist. However, some characters have appeared multiple times in the series so we’ll talk about them.
The main protagonist of the series, he becomes a Shinigami after he receives his Soul Reaper powers from Rukia Kuchiki.
Rukia offers him half of her powers to fight a Hollow but he ends up absorbing almost all her power due to which he ends up becoming a stand-in Soul Reaper. He fights Hollows, evil spirits from endangering the city of Karakura after Rukia informs him that she can’t protect the city until her powers come back.
Ichigo appears to be hot-headed, stubborn, and impulsive, however, he constantly proves that he cares greatly for his comrades. He genuinely wants to protect the ones close to him and went so far as to save Rukia after she was taken back to Soul Society, the afterlife, to be executed.
Ichigo is also considered to be one of the most favored shounen protagonists as he is featured multiple times on the Weekly Shounen Jump Manga.
A Soul Reaper who transfers her powers to Ichigo to defeat a Hollow, she is the lieutenant of the 13th Division which is under the command of Captain Jushiro Ukitake. She is also the adopted sister of Kuchiki Byakuya, captain of the 6th Division.
Rukia was born in poverty in Soul Society but remains modest and composed. She appears to be gentle and sophisticated but at the same time, she is often humorous and is very good at acting to save herself from certain situations.
She is reportedly the first character that was created by Tite Kubo for the series.
Ishida attends Karakura High School and is introduced as Ichigo’s classmate at the beginning of the series. He discloses his identity as a Quincy to challenge Ichigo to prove that Quincies are better than Shinigamis. However, they later become allies to take down several Hollows together.
As a Quincy, Uryu uses the most common weapon and power of the Quincy, i.e a bow and an arrow that is created by spiritual energy. He is usually quiet, calm and acts introverted but has a sense of justice. He is highly skilled at sewing but dislikes buttons.
He was created as an antagonist but Tite Kubo later changed his mind and makes Ishida comrades with Ichigo.
Orihime is introduced as a student of Karakuro Highschool and one of Ichigo’s closest friends. She quickly develops spiritual powers of her own after Ichigo becomes a Shinigami.
When she finds out about Ichigo, she decides to go to Soul Society with him to help him rescue Rukia and stop her execution.
Orihime has a very cheerful and optimistic personality, even though she appears to be quite naive and clueless. She can detect spiritual energy and can sense Hollows even from a far distance.
Yasutora Soda, better known as Chad, is one of Ichigo’s closest friends and also attended Karakura Highschool with him. He too developed his spiritual powers and decided to assist Ichigo to save Rukia in Soul Society.
Chad mostly remains quiet throughout the series and was considered a thug by most of his schoolmates but it is revealed that he has a soft spot for cute things and small animals.
He is also half Mexican and half Japanese in heritage.
Why Should You Watch Bleach?
If you’re an avid watcher of a full-packed action show with a set of emotionally developed characters, you will definitely enjoy the ride that Bleach will take you on.
The supernatural, comedy, action anime is one of its kind. Once a part of the Big Three, it being One Piece, Naruto and Bleach, it has cemented its place as one of the most loved shounen animes.
The show offers a very unique setting with the concept of Soul Reapers and Hollows, moreover, the protagonist has been praised by audiences. Ichigo’s cool and compassionate demeanor was different from normal shounen protagonists at the time who tended to be more lively and determined to achieve their goals.
Apart from the characters, Bleach displays some of the most creative power abilities as every character wields a different Zanpakto (sword). The fights scenes are very well animated and showcase some of the most iconic fights in anime.
Bleach’s soundtrack has been praised by critics for its peculiar background music as most of it is comprised of abstract sounds and instrumental. This makes the eerie tone of the background music stand out and more often than not, it matches the scenes in the show very well.
Even though it has been 8 years since it last aired, Bleach has remained to be one of the most iconic shows in anime history and continues to be widely popular within the community.
Receiving a rating of 8.1/10 on IMDb, it is also rated a 7.81 on MyAnimeList and number 38 on the popularity list.
In conclusion, If you’re a shounen trash consumer like me, you’d want to keep Bleach anime return on your watchlist.