Ichigo Kurosaki


Ichigo Kurosaki

] Zangetsu is portrayed as wise and calm in most matters, and fond of testing Ichigo in unusual ways, many of which have a purpose completely contrary to the stated goal. Zangetsu's special ability is the shrinks the sword (a nodachi) down to a fully black one while his uniform also changes to resemble the robe worn by Zangetsu's human form. As noted by Byakuya Kuchiki, Ichigo's bankai is a compression of his spiritual pressure, rather than a vast expansion as is usually the case. By compressing his power, Ichigo can move at high speeds, exceeding those of flash steps. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 19|year=2007 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 162|isbn=1-4215-1043-X]

In addition to his Soul Reaper powers, Ichigo partially becomes a hollow while reobtaining his Soul Reaper powers with the help of Kisuke Urahara. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 8|year=2005 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 63|isbn=1-59116-872-4] This leaves him with an inner hollow spirit that grows in strength as the series progresses. The spirit has an arrogant personality and mocks his counterpart's inability in a sneering, didactic fashion whenever the chance arises. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 13|year=2006 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 111|isbn=1-4215-0611-4] The hollow occasionally takes over Ichigo's body, at which times it fights like a berserker, is able to ignore any injuries Ichigo has previously sustained, and shows considerably increased speed and strength. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 19|year=2007 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 166|isbn=1-4215-1043-X] Ichigo is taught to control his hollow by the visored, allowing him to call upon his hollow powers at will and without sacrificing control by donning his hollow mask. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 25|year=2006 |publisher=Shueisha |chapter=Chapter 222|isbn=4-08-874289-3] Ichigo can initially only maintain this form for eleven seconds, but the limit increases substantially during his third battle with Grimmjow Jeagerjaques. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 26|year=2007 |publisher=Shueisha |chapter=Chapter 229|isbn=4-08-874315-8] [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 32|year=2007 |publisher=Shueisha |chapter=Chapter 283|isbn=4-08-874494-0]

Plot overview

Ichigo meets Rukia Kuchiki in the midst of a hollow attack. After Rukia is heavily injured by the hollow, she is forced to transfer her Soul Reaper powers to Ichigo so that he can kill the hollow and save their lives and his family. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 1|year=2004 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 1|pages=55|isbn=1-59116-441-9] Though the hollow is vanquished, Ichigo absorbs almost all of Rukia's spiritual power, and she is forced to stay in the human world until they return. In the meantime, Ichigo performs her Soul Reaper duties, inadvertently exposing his friends to the spiritual world and giving them their own unique abilities. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 1|year=2004 |publisher=Viz Media |chapter=Chapter 2|pages=|isbn=1-59116-441-9] When his actions eventually attract the attention of Soul Society, Rukia is detained and taken home to be executed, and Ichigo leads an effort to save her. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 8|year=2005 |publisher=Viz Media|chapter=Chapter 70|isbn=1-59116-872-4]

Upon arriving in Soul Society, he repeatedly clashes with high-ranking Soul Reapers as he gets closer to her location. In doing so he splits their forces in two; those who wish to help Ichigo free Rukia and those determined to carry out her execution. With the assistance of his newfound allies Rukia is saved, though she quickly falls into the hands of Sōsuke Aizen. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 20|year=2007 |publisher=Viz Media|chapter=Chapter 171|isbn=1-4215-1044-8] Aizen, having masterminded Rukia's execution, fulfills his plans by removing the Hōgyoku from her body. While he is unable to kill her as planned, he and his accomplices are able to flee Soul Society as the Soul Reapers reunite against him. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 20|year=2007 |publisher=Viz Media|chapter=Chapter 178|isbn=1-4215-1044-8] In the aftermath, Ichigo is made a "deputy Soul Reaper" and is allowed to return home with his friends. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 21|year=2007 |publisher=Viz Media|chapter=Chapter 181|isbn=1-4215-1165-7]

Aizen, through the use of the Hōgyoku, creates an army of arrancar that he sends to attack Ichigo and his friends in the human world. When they are unable to deal with the arrancar threat, Soul Society sends a group of Soul Reapers to help them. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 22|year=2008 |publisher=Viz Media|chapter=Chapter 195|isbn=1-4215-1179-7] Although they are able to fend off the arrancar with the bolstered defenses, they are unable to prevent the abduction of Orihime Inoue. When Soul Society refuses to save her, Ichigo and his friends go to Hueco Mundo to stage their own rescue attempt. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 27|year=2007 |publisher=Shueisha |chapter=Chapter 240|isbn=4-08-874339-4] With the help of a few friendly arrancar he meets along the way, Ichigo is ultimately able to reunite with Orihime. [cite book |last=Kubo|first=Tite|title=Bleach, Volume 32|year=2007 |publisher=Shueisha |chapter=Chapter 286|isbn=4-08-874494-0] Before they can return home, however, she is recaptured, and Ichigo sets out to get her back from Ulquiorra Schiffer.

Appearances in other media

Ichigo appears in the featured films of series; protecting a Soul Reaper named Senna in ' and aiding in the search for Tōshirō Hitsugaya in the '.cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=6600|title=Bleach: Memories of Nobody (movie)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-03-17] cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=8369|title=Bleach: The DiamondDust Rebellion - Mō Hitotsu no Hyōrinmaru (movie)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-03-17] He also appears in both of the original video animations; fighting against a hollow called the Grand Fisher in the first one and combating the rogue Soul Reaper Baishin in the second one.cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=5440|title=Bleach: Memories in the Rain (OAV)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-03-17] cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=6197|title=Bleach: The Sealed Sword Frenzy (OAV)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-03-17] He is also confirmed to be in the upcoming third movie, "Bleach: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu (I Call Your Name)"cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=10055|title=Bleach: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu (movie)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-08-31] cite web|url=http://www.tv-tokyo.co.jp/bleach/|title=Bleach: Fade to Black - Kimi no Na o Yobu |publisher=TV Tokyo|accessdate=2008-08-31] . In the "Bleach" video games, Ichigo is a playable character in every game, including the and series. In some games, his hollow form and "bankai" state are available as separate characters.cite web|url=http://www.jp.playstation.com/scej/title/bleach/heat/chara.html|title="Bleach: Heat the Soul" official site|author=|publisher=SCEI|date=|language=Japanese|accessdate=2008-03-17] cite book|editor=SCEI|title=Bleach: Heat the Soul 4 Japanese instruction manual|year=2007|publisher=SCEI|language=Japanese|pages=] In "Rock Musical Bleach", a musical based on the "Bleach" series, he is played by Tatsuya Isaka.cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=5441|title=Bleach Rock Musical (musical special)|publisher=Anime News Network|accessdate=2008-07-12]

Reception

Amongst the "Bleach" reader base, Ichigo has been highly popular, having always ranked within the top 5 in the "Shonen Jump" popularity polls for the series. He has usually taken first, though in the most recent ranking he dropped to 3rd place. ["Bleach" manga; chapter 209, pages 2 and 3.] ["Bleach" manga Character Poll; chapter 307, pages 1 and 2.] His character also appeared in the 2007 Japanese Newtype magazine polls ranked him as one of the top 100 most-loved anime characters.Fact|date=September 2008 At the first Seiyū Awards in March 2007, Masakazu Morita won in the category "Best Rookie Actor" for his role as Ichigo Kurosaki. [cite web|url=http://www.seiyuawards.jp/|title=声優アワード|Language=Japanese|publisher=Seiyu Awards|accessdate=2008-07-11] Ichigo's voice actor in the English adaptation, Johnny Yong Bosch, has also been praised for his voice work on Ichigo's character by Anime News Network, which favorably compared Bosch and Morita's work. Various merchandise based on Ichigo's appearance has been created, including action figures, [cite web|url=http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000HGY95Y|title=Bleach 5" PVC 2-pack - Ichigo Kurosaki & Rukia Kuchiki|publisher=Amazon.com|accessdate=2008-07-11] plush toys [cite web|url=http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000R93N44|title=Bleach Ichigo Kurosaki Plush BL-007a|publisher=Amazon.com|accessdate=2008-07-11] , and key-chains. [cite web|url=http://www.amazon.com/Bleach-Chibi-Ichigo-Key-Chain/dp/B000U2SYQ0/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=toys-and-games&qid=1215827927&sr=1-1|title=Bleach Chibi Ichigo Key Chain|publisher=Amazon.com|accessdate=2008-07-11] Since the series was published models of Ichigo's "zanpakutō" have also been produced for purchase by collectors. [cite web|url=http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000GD8X0U|title=Ichigo-Cutting Moon Replica Sword|publisher=Amazon.com|accessdate=2008-07-11]

Several publications for manga, anime, video games, and other related media have provided praise and criticism on Ichigo's character. Active anime praises Ichigo for being immediately likeable with his reckless ways but kind interior.cite web|url=http://www.activeanime.com/pn/index.php?name=News&file=article&sid=4075|title=ActiveAnime.com :: BLEACH: THE SUBSTITUTE (VOL. 1)|publisher=Active Anime|date=2006-11-08|accessdate=2008-07-11] Anime News Network commented that Ichigo's initial rebellious actions make him almost a stereotypical anti-hero, but note that he is soon revealed to be a more complex character with a sad past.cite web|url=http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/review/bleach-01/the-substitute|title=Bleach DVD 1 - Review|publisher=Anime News Network|author=Harper, Melissa|date=2007-01-22|accessdate=2008-07-11] IGN praised Ichigo's climactic fight against Byakuya Kuchiki as one of the best fights in the "Bleach" series, [cite web|url=http://tv.ign.com/articles/867/867020p1.html|title=Bleach: "Conclusion of the Death Match! White Pride and Black Desire" Review|publisher=IGN|author=White, Charles|date=2008-04-16|accessdate=2008-07-11] and later gave additional praise to both the design and voice acting for Ichigo's inner hollow. [cite web|url=http://tv.ign.com/articles/916/916375p1.html|title=Bleach: "Ichigo vs. Dalk! Appearance of the Faded Darkness" Review" Review|publisher=IGN|author=Isler, Ramsey|date=2008-04-16|accessdate=2008-07-11] Wizarduniverse.com considered Ichigo the best hero from 2007, commenting that he does not try to be a hero as he just fights in order to protect a friends or to return a debt. [cite web|url=http://www.wizarduniverse.com/013008blhero.html|title=BEST OF 2007: BEST HERO—ICHIGO KUROSAKI|publisher=Wizarduniverse.com|date=2008-06-30|accessdate=2008-09-22]

References


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