List: My Favorite Bleach Characters

This list of favorite characters from Bleach is based off of the anime and not on the manga. At the time I’m writing this list, I have seen all of the anime but have not read all of the manga.

But, as usual, this list is not a Top 5 list. Instead, my choices are being presented in alphabetical order by first name.

Ichigo Kurosaki

Not surprisingly, protagonist Ichigo Kurosaki makes it onto the list. He’s established as an interesting character from the get-go, when its shown that he can see spirits. He starts out as a bit of a punk, yet he still has a caring heart. His life changes when he encounters Rukia, and he unintentionally absorbs most of her Soul Reaper powers when he saves his family from a Hollow. It’s just amazing to see how Ichigo goes from being a cynical guy who really doesn’t want to be a Soul Reaper to a character that accepts and welcomes the strength that the Soul Reaper powers give him.

As he develops a circle of friends, both human and Soul Reapers, around him, he becomes even more considerate and thoughtful of others. One of the biggest things in his character development, though, is avenging his mother’s death when he faces the Hollow that killed her. I honestly think this was the moment in the series when Ichigo really started to evolve as a character.

Orihime Inoue

Orihime starts out as the sweet, yet sometimes naïve, classmate of Ichigo Kurosaki, who has a crush on him. She lived with her older brother until he died in an accident when she was in middle school. When her late brother turns into a Hollow, Ichigo is able to save her with his Soul Reaper powers.

When the series starts, Orihime doesn’t have spiritual powers. However, she develops spiritual awareness early on, and later obtains an ability to warp reality by rejecting past phenomena. As a character, Orihime continues to be sweet and kind, but she slowly starts becoming less naïve. She ultimately becomes a driving force, not only for Ichigo’s character development, but also for the story itself.

Rukia Kuchiki

Rukia is a Soul Reaper who introduced early on in the series, when she breaks into his house. Unfortunately, she doesn’t realize that Ichigo can see her. She ultimately sets the story in motion when she transfers some of her Soul Reaper power to Ichigo, but he accidentally absorbs all of it.  She takes on a temporary life of a regular human, living in Ichigo’s closet, and going to school with him. She spends her time teaching Ichigo how to be a Soul Reaper. One of my favorite scenes from early on in the series is seeing Rukia attempt to draw, but she lacks any real artistic ability. Her drawings are actually quite amusing.

But when Rukia is taken to Soul Society to be punished for giving her Soul Reaper powers to a human, Ichigo and his friends go to Soul Society to save her. By the end of that arc, Rukia becomes an important friend and ally to Ichigo. While her purpose for her to be around Ichigo changes over the course of the series, she continues to be a character that the audience cares about.

Yasutora Sado (aka Chad)

Chad is of mixed Japanese and Mexican heritage, and is also incredibly tall in comparison to his classmates. Even though he has an imposing appearance, he’s actually meek and he refuses to fight unless it’s for the sake of another. He also shows little emotion, except when someone or something he cares about is in danger. This dichotomy is one of the first things that grabbed my attention when it came to Chad.

While trying to protect Ichigo’s sister Karin from a Hollow, Chad discovers that he has an ability that allows him to strengthen and armor his right arm. This power makes sense for Chad, even though he’s not much into fighting. This at least gives him a way to protect those he cares about and is loyal to.

When it comes to Chad, my favorite storyline that he features in is the one where he accepts a cursed cockatiel. Seeing this imposing guy taking care of a cute little bird was amusing, but what happens by the end of this particular story is actually rather sad. Chad definitely got his best stories early on in the series. I still liked him a lot later on, but he just never quite got as good of stories as he did in the early episodes.

Yoruichi Shihoin

Yoruichi’s cat form actually made an appearance on an earlier list I wrote about my favorite anime cats. So it really shouldn’t be surprising that she would make it onto this list as well.

I really like Yoruichi’s personality. She’s intelligent and witty, but she can also kick some serious ass when she’s fighting. In addition to her personality, I admire her for how much of a loyal ally she is to Ichigo and his friends. The ability to transform into a cat also adds to her awesomeness. She’s a great character all around, and it’s a shame that she wasn’t necessarily utilized as well as she could have been in the anime.

My Hero Academia Takes 11 of the Top 20 Spots on the U.S. Monthly Bookscan October 2018 Manga List

The top 20 selling manga in the United States for October 2018, according to NPD Bookscan, are:

1. My Hero Academia Volume 15 by Kōhei Horikoshi
2. My Hero Academia: Vigilantes Volume 2 by Hideyuki Furuhashi and Kōhei Horikoshi
3. My Hero Academia Volume 1 by Kōhei Horikoshi
4. My Hero Academia Volume 14 by Kōhei Horikoshi
5. Tokyo Ghoul:re Volume 7 by Sui Ishida
6. Berserk Official Guidebook by Kentarou Miura
7. My Hero Academia Volume 2 by Kōhei Horikoshi
8. Frankeinstein: Junji Ito Story Collection by Junji Ito
9. Bleach Volume 74 by Tite Kubo
10. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Volume 4 by Akira Himekawa
11. My Hero Academia Volume 3 by Kōhei Horikoshi
12. My Hero Academia: Vigilantes Volume 1 by Hideyuki Furuhashi and Kōhei Horikoshi
13. My Hero Academia Volume 4 by Kōhei Horikoshi
14. My Hero Academia Volume 5 by Kōhei Horikoshi
15. My Hero Academia Volume 13 by Kōhei Horikoshi
16. Blue Exorcist Volume 20 by Kazue Katō
17. My Hero Academia Volume 6 by Kōhei Horikoshi
18. Tokyo Ghoul Volume 1 by Sui Ishida
19. The Promised Neverland Volume 6 by Kaiu Shirai and Posuka Demizu
20. Food Wars! Volume 26 by Yūto Tsukuda and Shun Saeki

Source: ANN

My Hero Academia Takes Seven Spots on NPD BookScan’s Top 20 Graphic Novel List for October 2018

Twelve manga titles appeared on NPD BookScan’s Top 20 Graphic Novel list for October 2018:

  • My Hero Academia Volume 15 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#2)
  • My Hero Academia: Vigilantes Volume 2 by Hideyuki Furuhashi and Kōhei Horikoshi (#5)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 1 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#7)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 14 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#8)
  • Tokyo Ghoul:re Volume 7 by Sui Ishida (#10)
  • Berserk Official Guidebook by Kentarou Miura (#11)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 12 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#12)
  • Frankenstein: Junji Ito Story Collection by Junji Ito (#14)
  • Bleach Volume 74 by Tite Kubo (#15)
  • The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess Volume 4 by Akira Himekawa (#16)
  • My Hero Academia Volume 3 by Kōhei Horikoshi (#18)
  • My Hero Academia: Vigilantes Volume 1 by Hideyuki Furuhashi and Kōhei Horikoshi (#20)

The BookScan rankings represent sales at Barnes & Noble and other book chains, independent bookshops, and online purchases — but not sales at comic book stores, Walmart.com, and some other venues.

Source: ANN

VIZ Media Announces a New Dragon Ball Manga Release and the Final Bleach Box Set

VIZ Media has announced the release of Dragon Ball: That Time I Got Reincarnated as Yamcha! and Bleach Box Set 3 in early November 2018.

A hilarious manga spin-off based on famed creator Akira Toriyama’s original series, Dragon Ball: That Time I Got Reincarnated as Yamcha! will debut in print and digital editions on November 6, 2018. Shonen Jump fans can also enjoy the exclusive print release of the final manga box set for the bestselling supernatural action adventure series Bleach.

DRAGON BALL: THAT TIME I GOT REINCARNATED AS YAMCHA!
Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN / Digital MSRP $6.99
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts November 6, 2018

A Dragon Ball fan’s greatest dream is getting to live in the Dragon Ball universe and fight alongside Goku and his friends. But one particular fan is in for a rude awakening when he suddenly dies and gets reincarnated as everyone’s favorite punching bag, Yamcha.

BLEACH MANGA BOX SET 3
MSRP: $199.99 U.S. / $259.99 CAN
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts November 6, 2018

The third and final Bleach manga box set. This set completes the series and contains volumes 49-74, along with an exclusive booklet containing a cover art gallery and author interview. The box set also contains a full-color, double-sided poster.

Ichigo Kurosaki never asked for the ability to see ghosts—he was born with the gift. When his family is attacked by a Hollow—a malevolent lost soul—Ichigo becomes a Soul Reaper, dedicating his life to protecting the innocent and helping the tortured spirits themselves find peace. Find out why Tite Kubo’s Bleach has become an international manga hit.

VIZ Media Announces New Publishing Acquisitions at Anime Boston 2018

VIZ Media announced newly acquired publishing titles during its official panel event held at Anime Boston 2018.

The latest new titles joining VIZ Media’s publishing catalog include Dragon Quest Illustrations: 30th Anniversary Edition, a deluxe hardcover collector’s edition featuring over 500 illustrations for the award-winning video game series from Akira Toriyama, the creator of Dragon Ball. The Complete Art of Fullmetal Alchemist, which features all the art from the beloved manga series was also announced. The fun Dragon Ball spin-off, Dragon Ball: That Time I Got Reincarnated as Yamcha!, and the popular romantic comedy from Weekly Shonen Jump, We Never Learn, will make their publication debuts beginning in Fall 2018. Other notable Shonen Jump releases include the Bleach Box Set 3, the final box set for the long-running soul reaper series, and the dystopian adventure series Dr. Stone. The fan-favorite shojo romance, Ao Haru Rride, will debut in Fall 2018.

Exciting announcements from this past weekend also include Abara: Complete Deluxe Edition, a tense sci-fi horror series from Tsutomu Nihei, and Record of Grancrest War, a high-fantasy adventure by the author of Record of Lodoss War. The Tokyo Ghoul Complete Box Set, containing Volumes 1-14 of the series, will also be available to fans in Fall 2018. VIZ Media is also pleased to announce two more upcoming debuts, Radiant, a fantasy adventure series, and Ran and the Gray World, a charming coming-of-age story about a young sorceress who takes a shortcut to growing up.

Additional information on each of these titles will be announced in the near future.

New Shonen Jump Releases

DRAGON BALL: THAT TIME I GOT REINCARNATED AS YAMCHA!
DRAGON BALL by Akira Toriyama, Art by dragongarow LEE
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
A Dragon Ball fan dies and is reincarnated as Yamcha—Dragon Ball‘s biggest punching bag and total internet meme. Knowing this character’s bleak future, he strives to make Yamcha the strongest Dragon Ball character ever.

DR. STONE
Story by Riichiro Inagaki, Art by Boichi
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
When every human on Earth is turned to stone by a mysterious phenomenon, high-schooler Taiju is also petrified the moment he’s about to confess to his high school crush. Flash forward several thousands of years later, Taiju awakens and joins up with his friend Senku, who has ambitious dreams. His plan: to restart civilization from square one with the power of science.

WE NEVER LEARN
Story and Art by Taishi Tsutsui
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Winter 2018
Nariyuki Yuiga comes from an impoverished family, so he’s eager to secure a full scholarship to college when he graduates high school. His principal agrees to support him, with one stipulation—he must tutor the two smartest girls at the school and make sure they get into their target colleges. Rizu is a science genius who wants to study liberal arts. Fumino is effortlessly good at literature, but math makes her head spin. Nariyuki is stuck between a rock and a hard place, but who can complain about tutoring a couple of cute girls?

BLEACH BOX SET 3
Story and Art by Tite Kubo
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
The third and final Bleach box set. This set features volumes 49-74 at a substantial savings over buying them individually, along with an exclusive mini-comic containing color art of the series plus an author interview and look in the studio from the fanbook Bleach: 13 Blades, and a full-color, double-sided poster.

New VIZ Signature Releases

ABARA: COMPLETE DELUXE EDITION
Story and Art by by Tsutomu Nihei
Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Debuts Winter 2018
Tsutomu Nihei’s dazzling, harrowing dystopian thriller is presented here in a single-volume hardcover edition featuring full-color pages and fold-out illustrations. This volume also includes the early short story “Digimortal.”

RAN AND THE GRAY WORLD
Story and Art by Aki Irie
Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
Little Ran Uruma can’t wait to grow up and become a sorceress like her mother, so with the help of a magical pair of sneakers, she transforms into an adult and sets off. Her father and older brother Jin try to keep her safe at home, but Ran is determined to advance her powers and have adventures of her own.

TOKYO GHOUL COMPLETE BOX SET
Story and Art by Sui Ishida
Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
A box set that includes all 14 volumes of the original Tokyo Ghoul series and an exclusive double-sided poster. In Tokyo Ghoul, Ghouls live among us, the same as normal people in every way—except their craving for human flesh. Ken Kaneki is an ordinary college student until a violent encounter turns him into the first half-human half-ghoul hybrid. Trapped between two worlds, he must survive Ghoul turf wars, learn more about Ghoul society and master his new powers.

Additional VIZ Media Releases

DRAGON QUEST ILLUSTRATIONS: 30TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION
Art by Akira Toriyama
Debuts Winter 2018

This is an archive of Akira Toriyama’s illustrations and designs for the award-winning Dragon Quest series, spanning 30 years of work stretching from all Dragon Quest titles released from 1986 through 2016.

THE COMPLETE ART OF FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST
Art by Hiromu Arakawa
Debuts Fall 2018

This 288-page deluxe hardcover full color art book is sure to delight Fullmetal Alchemist fans. Contains all the art from the manga series, with additional Fullmetal Alchemist art pieces—some of which have never been shared with North American audiences.

AO HARU RIDE
Story and Art by Io Sakisaka
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
Futaba Yoshioka thought all boys were loud and obnoxious until she met Kou Tanaka in junior high. But as soon as she realized she really liked him, he had already moved away because of family issues. Now in high school, Kou has reappeared, but is he still the same boy she fell in love with?

RADIANT
Story and Art by Tony Valente
Rated “T” for Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
Seth is an aspiring wizard living in a pastoral village under the watchful eye of his mentor. Like all wizards, he is an “infected”—one of the few people that has survived contact with a Nemesis, creatures that fall from the sky and contaminate all they touch. His encounter gave him powers and led him to choose a path that seemed to be perfect—to become someone who hunts and fights the Nemesis. But Seth longs for a quest that goes beyond the simple hunt for monsters. He wants to find the place they come from, Radiant, and destroy it. Along with other wizards, he travels the world in search of Radiant, under the sinister eye of the Inquisition.

RECORD OF GRANCREST WAR
Original Story by Ryo Mizuno, Story and Art by Makoto Yotsuba, Character Design by Miyuu
Rated “T+” for Older Teens · Debuts Fall 2018
In a world where the noble elite are supposed to fend off the threat of terrifying Chaos but instead engage in pointless petty squabbles, young mage Siluca Meletes dreams of bringing justice to the land. She finds an ally in Theo, a young knight with a bright future. But as Theo soon finds out, despite her righteous goal of world peace, her methods are more than a little unorthodox.

VIZ Media Announces the Home Media Release of Bleach Set 3 on Blu-ray

VIZ Media continues to expand the Blu-ray catalog for the Bleach anime series with the release of Set 3 on October 24, 2017.

Bleach Set 3 includes four discs, covering Episodes 56-83, and will carry an MSRP of $54.97 U.S. / $63.99 CAN. Episodes will be available with dialogue selections for dubbed English as well as subtitled, Japanese 2.0 audio, with episodes presented uncut and in their original 4:3 format. Special bonus content for this new home media edition includes a “Behind the Scenes of Bleach” segment featuring interviews with the English voice cast along with an added segment on Kon’s U.S. Tour.

In the latest episodes, it’s Soul Reaper against Soul Reaper as captains Ukitake and Kyoraku face punishment from Head Captain Yamamoto. Yoruichi encounters her former subordinate Soi Fon in a deadly battle, while Ichigo struggles to survive his own fight with Captain Byakuya. Meanwhile, Captain Hitsugaya and Rangiku break into Central 46, but they’re not alone.

In the Bleach anime series, for as long as he can remember, Ichigo Kurosaki has been able to see ghosts. But when he meets Rukia, a Soul Reaper who battles evil spirits known as Hollows, his life is changed forever. Now, with a newfound wealth of spiritual energy, Ichigo discovers his true calling – to protect the world of the living and the dead as a Substitute Soul Reaper.

The Bleach animated films and TV series are based on the manga series created by Tite Kubo.

List: My Favorite Anime Cats

This time, I’m trying my hand at another list article, this time on my favorite anime cats. Rather than being a top 5 list, however, I am presenting my choices in alphabetical order.

Chi from Chi’s Sweet Home

My first exposure to Chi came from reading the Chi’s Sweet Home manga. I loved following the stories of this curious young kitten in print, but I wondered what it would be like to see Chi in an animated form. I was thrilled when I discovered I could get a hold of the North American releases for the Chi’s Sweet Home anime through my local library system.

Seeing Chi moving around in an animated form made me like Chi even more. Let’s admit it, Chi looks really cute. And for the anime, the director chose the perfect voice actor to portray Chi, because the cuteness level of the voice matches the character’s adorable look.

Chi is one of my favorite anime cats thanks to being so cute, adorable, and lovable. If Chi was a real cat, she’s one I would love to just hold and cuddle all day long.

Jiji from Kiki’s Delivery Service

Jiji is the familiar for Kiki, a young witch in training. But he’s not just an ordinary cat, he’s a talking cat. Early on in the film, Jiji seems to fill in for the role of a guardian, since Kiki leaves home and doesn’t have her parents around. He serves as the voice of caution and reason, although he can be a little over-the-top at times. But Jiji always has Kiki’s best interests at heart.

Jiji is also there to help Kiki out when she needs it. When she loses a black cat toy that she was supposed to deliver, Jiji fills in for the stuffed toy until Kiki can locate it. Yes, he agrees to do it grudgingly, but he still does it. How many cats would be willing to go that far for their owner?

I like Jiji because even though he can be snarky, he still cares about Kiki and wants to do what he can to help her succeed in her training.

Karin from Dragon Ball

Karin is a wise old cat who is over 800 years old and lives on top of a giant tower. He’s also a martial arts master. We first meet Karin in Dragon Ball, when Goku climbs up Karin Tower in order to drink the “Sacred Water” that is supposed to increase his strength and speed. Goku hears about Karin before heading up the tower, but has no idea that Karin is actually a cat. Over the course of the Dragon Ball franchise, just about anyone who encounters Karin are surprised to discover that he’s actually a cat.

Karin is a martial arts master, but he’s also got a bit of a tricky and sarcastic streak in him. But considering that Karin later winds up having Yajirobe hanging around him at the top of the tower, that sarcastic streak certainly comes in handy! But even though Karin can be sarcastic, he still does genuinely care about the other characters.

I like Karin because he can teach others how to effectively use martial arts, and be snarky yet caring.

Luna from Sailor Moon

Luna is another black talking cat, but unlike Jiji, she’s from the Moon Kingdom and serves as an adviser to Usagi Tsukino/Sailor Moon. While their bond is an uneasy one at first, both Usagi and Luna grow closer over time. Luna tends to give unsolicited advice, which annoyed Usagi early on. But as time goes on, Usagi seems to start to realize that Luna is trying to help, rather than annoy her, with the advice.

Like the other talking cats that appear on this list, Luna will sometimes get some witty lines… with some of those lines being slightly snarky observations of Usagi. I don’t think Luna intends to be mean when she says these things, though. I think she says them more out of frustration than anything else.

But Luna is cool for more than just being able to talk. She can also use a computer when she provides aid and knowledge for Sailor Moon and the other Sailor Guardians. I guess the fact that Luna comes from the moon makes her more technologically advanced than regular cats.

Even though Sailor Moon also features two other cats, Artemis and Diana, I think that Luna is the best one of the three. To be honest, it’s always felt like that Artemis and Diana were never as well developed of characters as Luna was.

Yoruichi from Bleach

Yoruichi has a major difference from the other cats on the list. Yoruichi is actually a female human who has the ability to transform into a small black cat. In her black cat form, Yoruichi has a distinctive male voice when she speaks. Yoruichi appears to prefer spending her time as cat rather than as a human. She loves her cat form so much that she will become upset if someone damages it or insults it.

Regardless of what form Yoruichi is in, she is witty and has a vast knowledge of Soul Society. Her knowledge comes in handy, especially early on in the series when she’s helping to train Ichigo Kurosaki. But she also likes to tease people if she can.

No matter what form Yoruichi is in, she can be rather badass, which is why I wanted to include her cat form in this list. I have to admit that I wanted to limit this list to include only one human who can transform into a cat, so I had to make a choice between Yoruichi and Kyo from Fruits Basket. While I like Kyo, I ultimately ended up choosing Yoruichi because of how she can kick butt, but can also be laid-back and flirty when she wants to be.