Hardcore Bleach fans who have been anxiously waiting to see the manga’s final arc come to life won’t have to wait until they reach the Soul Society for it to actually happen.
Anyone who has watched Bleach from Ichigo’s first encounter with a Soul Reaper has probably been disappointed in the arguably unnecessary fillers (what was with that Bount arc anyway?) and how the series cut off after the Fullbringer Arc, leaving behind too much unfinished business. That was just shikai, and everyone is dying for bankai.
Now professional animators and Bleach fans are bringing together their powers to animate the final arc, 1,000 Year Blood War.
Bleach dropped off of the face of TV so suddenly because Tite Kubo’s manga sales were plummeting. The supernatural journey that started when flame-haired delinquent Ichigo Kurosaki, who could always see ghosts for some unexplained reason, transcends the world of the living to fight evil spirits as a substitute Soul Reaper. Just in case you didn’t know, you usually have to be dead to wear that uniform.
Because a 1,000 Year Blood War anime was just not dropping from the other realm anytime soon, Tensei Productions has decided to take up the Zanpakutō that Shueisha and Studio Pierrot left in the dust and do it themselves.
As something of a prototype, the Tensei team has animated some cuts from the manga and recorded dialogue from the Fullbring arc to give fans at least a ghost of an idea what Blood War would look like.
The reaction was overwhelmingly positive. The video already has close to a thousand likes on YouTube with only one dislike — Ichigo will smite that person — and is materializing all over the internet. Seriously, the voices of the characters sound so much like the original anime, you might think the cast that guided souls and blasted Hollows for 366 episodes has actually returned.
This isn’t the first time someone has tried to animate Bleach’s final arc, but there has been speculation about whether Shueisha will be sparked to finish what they started. When fan efforts have gone so far to record lines for Blood War characters in a mobile game, you know it’s about time that the final 200 chapters of the Soul Reapers’ struggle for survival take anime form already.
At least the live-action version of Bleach, which adapts the first arc, will be on Netflix sometime next month.