Bleach is a popular manga and anime series that follows the adventures of Ichigo Kurosaki, a teenager who can see ghosts and becomes a Soul Reaper, a warrior who protects the world from evil spirits. Along his journey, Ichigo encounters many enemies and allies, but one of the most mysterious and powerful foes he faces is Yhwach, the leader of the Wandenreich, a group of Quincies who seek to destroy the Soul Society and the Soul King.
But who is Yhwach and what is his connection to Ichigo? Is Ichigo really a Quincy in Bleach? And why did Yhwach call Ichigo his son born in the dark? In this article, we will answer these questions and reveal the truth behind Ichigo’s relationship to Yhwach.
Ichigo’s Lineage: A Mixture of Four Races
To understand how Ichigo is related to Yhwach, we need to first look at Ichigo’s lineage and how he inherited his powers from his parents. Ichigo’s father, Isshin Kurosaki, was originally a Soul Reaper from the Shiba clan, one of the noble families of the Soul Society. He was also a captain of the 10th Division of the Gotei 13, the military organization of Soul Reapers.
Isshin’s Soul Reaper powers were based on his Zanpakuto, a sword that reflects his soul and has a unique name and ability. Isshin’s Zanpakuto was called Engetsu, which means “Scathing Moon”, and it allowed him to manipulate fire and use a technique called Getsuga Tensho, which means “Moon Fang Heaven-Piercer”, a powerful slash of energy.
Isshin also had a hidden power that he inherited from his ancestor, Kaien Shiba, who was possessed by a Hollow, an evil spirit that was once a human soul. Hollows are the natural enemies of Soul Reapers and Quincies, as they feed on their spiritual energy. Isshin’s Hollow power manifested as a white mask that covered his face and enhanced his strength and speed.
Isshin’s Hollow power was also related to another character, Sosuke Aizen, the main antagonist of Bleach’s first arc. Aizen was a former captain of the 5th Division of the Gotei 13, who betrayed the Soul Society and created an army of Arrancars, Hollows that have gained Soul Reaper powers by removing their masks. Aizen’s goal was to create the Hogyoku, a device that could break the boundaries between races and grant any wish.
Aizen experimented on Isshin and other Soul Reapers by implanting them with Hollows, creating hybrids called Visoreds. Isshin was one of the victims of Aizen’s experiments, but he managed to escape with the help of Kisuke Urahara, a former captain of the 12th Division and a genius inventor.
Isshin’s mother, Masaki Kurosaki, was a Quincy, a human who can manipulate spiritual energy and use it to create weapons and abilities. Quincies are different from Soul Reapers in that they destroy Hollows completely, rather than purifying them and sending them to the afterlife. This disrupts the balance of souls between the worlds and threatens to collapse reality.
Quincies are also descendants of Yhwach, the first Quincy and the founder of the Wandenreich. Yhwach was born with a unique power called The Almighty, which allowed him to see all possible futures and alter them at will. He also had the ability to share his soul with other Quincies, granting them powers and taking them back when they die.
Masaki’s Quincy powers were based on her spirit weapon, which was a bow that could fire arrows of spiritual energy. She also had access to Blut Vene, which means “Blood Vein”, a technique that allowed her to increase her defense by hardening her blood vessels.
Masaki also had another power that she inherited from her ancestor, Katagiri Kurosaki, who was infected by a Hollow during an attack by Yhwach 200 years ago. This Hollow was called White, and it was created by Aizen using the Hogyoku as part of his experiments on Hollowfication.
White was designed to target Soul Reapers with high spiritual pressure and turn them into Visoreds. However, White failed to do so when it encountered Isshin and Masaki 20 years ago. Instead, White attacked Masaki and transferred its essence into her body, making her part Hollow as well.
Isshin saved Masaki from White’s attack and fell in love with her. They got married and had three children: Ichigo, Karin, and Yuzu. Ichigo was the firstborn and the one who inherited the most of his parents’ powers. He was born as a human with Soul Reaper, Quincy, and Hollow blood in his veins.
Ichigo’s Powers: A Fusion of Four Races
Ichigo’s powers were awakened when he met Rukia Kuchiki, a Soul Reaper from the 13th Division of the Gotei 13, who came to his town to hunt down a Hollow. Rukia was injured by the Hollow and transferred her powers to Ichigo, allowing him to become a Substitute Soul Reaper and fight the Hollow.
Ichigo’s Soul Reaper powers were based on his Zanpakuto, which was called Zangetsu, which means “Slaying Moon”. Zangetsu had two forms: a Shikai, which was a large cleaver-like sword that could fire Getsuga Tensho, and a Bankai, which was a smaller and sleeker sword that greatly increased Ichigo’s speed and power.
Ichigo’s Quincy powers were dormant for most of his life, until he encountered the Wandenreich during their invasion of the Soul Society. He learned that he had a Quincy side within him, which was represented by a young man who looked like him and claimed to be the true Zangetsu. This Quincy side was actually a fragment of Yhwach’s soul that was passed down to Ichigo through Masaki.
Ichigo’s Quincy side helped him unlock his Blut Vene, which saved him from Yhwach’s attack. He also helped him learn how to use his spirit weapon, which was a bow that resembled Zangetsu’s Shikai form. Ichigo’s Quincy side also revealed that he had another power within him, which was his Hollow side.
Ichigo’s Hollow side was the result of White’s infection of Masaki and his subsequent transfer to Ichigo. White fused with Ichigo’s Soul Reaper side and became his true Zanpakuto spirit. White was also responsible for Ichigo’s Hollowfication, which occurred several times during his battles.
Ichigo’s Hollowfication manifested as a black mask that covered his face and gave him access to White’s abilities, such as Cero, a powerful blast of energy, and Sonido, a high-speed movement technique. Ichigo also had a full Hollow form, which he achieved when he lost control of his Hollow side and transformed into a monstrous creature with horns and claws.
Ichigo later learned how to control his Hollow side and fuse it with his Soul Reaper side, creating a new form called Resurreccion, which means “Resurrection”. Resurreccion was similar to his Bankai form, but with white clothing and markings on his body. Resurreccion gave Ichigo access to both White’s and Zangetsu’s abilities, as well as a new technique called Gran Rey Cero, which means “Grand King Zero”, a more powerful version of Cero.
Ichigo also had another power that he gained from his human side, which was Fullbring, which means “Fully Bringing Out”. Fullbring was a power that humans who were exposed to Hollows could develop, allowing them to manipulate the souls of objects and use them as weapons or abilities.
Ichigo’s Fullbring was based on his Substitute Soul Reaper badge, which he received from Ukitake Jushiro, the captain of the 13th Division of the Gotei 13, as a token of recognition for his services. Ichigo’s Fullbring allowed him to change the shape of his badge into various forms, such as a sword or an armor.
Ichigo lost his Fullbring after he was betrayed by Kugo Ginjo, the leader of the Xcution group, who stole it from him. However, he regained it after Rukia restored his Soul Reaper powers with the help of Urahara and the other captains of the Gotei 13.
Ichigo eventually learned how to harmonize all four aspects of his powers: Soul Reaper, Quincy, Hollow, and Fullbring. He achieved this by forging a new Zanpakuto with the help of Oetsu Nimaiya, one of the Royal Guard members who protect the Soul King Palace.
Ichigo’s new Zanpakuto consisted of two swords: one that represented his Quincy side and one that represented his Hollow side. By combining them together, he could activate his true Shikai form, which resembled two large blades with black and white patterns on them. By combining them further, he could activate his true Bankai form, which resembled a sleek black sword with white markings on it.
Ichigo’s true Shikai and Bankai forms gave him access to all four aspects of his powers at once, making him one of the most powerful beings in Bleach. He could use Getsuga Tensho in both forms, as well as Gran Rey C