To anyone in the street Ichigo Kurosaki appears to be a normal
fifteen year old, but Ichigo has a secret, he can interact
with the dead. Although an unusual ability it does not affect
his normal life until he meets Rukia Kuckiki, an emissary
of the Soul Society and a Soul Reaper. During one fateful
confrontation Rukia transfers some of her power into Ichigo,
but unexpectantly the transference turns him into a full Soul
Series 1 - Part 1 spawns from the original manga by Tite
Kubo, ending up as two films, two OVA's, a number of games
and even a rock musical. This set contains the first eight
episodes of this twenty episode series, as well as four bonus
instalments. The individual episodes do not have titles just
numbers. The discs come with an audio option of stereo English,
Japanese, with optional subtitles.
1, and we are introduced to Ichigo's world, where he helps
troubled ghosts. Little in his experience can prepare him
for meeting the Hollows, who hunt and devour souls or Rukai
the Reaper. When a Hollow attacks Ichigo's family, Rukai transfers
her power to him in order to stop the Hollow.
2, and everyone seems to be in denial as none of his family
remembers the attack, the night before. With Rukai's powers
spent Ichigo has to take over her role as a Reaper and it
is not long before he has his first confrontation.
3: Orihime is being attacked by her dead brother who is
now a hollow, with Ichigo fighting from the outside and Orihime
fighting from the inside. Can the two release his soul before
he harms his sister.
4: Through a friend Ichigo finds that a bird contains
the trapped soul of a young boy, worse still the boy is being
hunted by a Hollow.
first disc also contains extras in the form of textless closing
credits and some production art.
5, and the story continues. Though Rukai is having problems
banishing a creature as her powers are not yet fully restored.
Eventually Ichigo arrives and banishes the creature.
6: Rukia buys some soul candy for Ichigo, with the idea
of helping him turn into a Reaper if she is not around, but
when Ichigo tries some it has some unexpected consequences.
7, and the story continues with Ichigo still having problems
with his unexpected guest in his body. When Rukai explains
that he should have put the soul in a dead body and not his
own he finds a stuffed toy and transfers the soul, animating
8: On the anniversary of his mother's death Ichigo goes
to the graveyard to pay homage to her memory, unfortunately
he runs into a Shinigami who is wondering why Rukia has not
returned. When Ichigo informs him of what happened, he discovers
that what had happened is against Reaper law.
two has another textless closing, production art and trailers
for four other shows as well as a look at the Bleach
game for the DS and Wii.
9: The fight continues, in the graveyard, with the hollow.
When Ichigo discovers that the hollow he is fighting is the
same one that killed his mother, revenge and honour demand
that he kill this hollow himself.
10, and a little magic can not only go a long way, but
can also get out of hand. Don Kanonji, who believes that he
can perform spiritual exorcisms, releases a Hollow and has
to turn to Ichigo for help.
11, and a new protagonist arrives on the scene when Ichigo
and Rukia discover that someone else is despatching Hollows.
It is a Quincy, but unlike the Shingami, Quincy's don't just
despatch Hollows but kill them outright.
12, and it is a hollow killing fest of an episode with
Chad, Ichigo and Uryu spending much of the episode kicking
three has a textless closing sequence and some production
be honest I can see why the show became as popular as it did.
The animation is high quality and remains that way. The stories
are a nice blend of comedy and action, with Ichigo's family
providing some much needed emotional content to balance the
Hollow killing which appears in each episode. Character designs
remain good which makes it easier to distinguish the various
characters. The Japanese sound track is good, but then so
is the English dub. It's a shame that there wasn't the option
of listening to the show in 5.1 as it is an action orientated
piece, or that the extras were not a little more substantial.
Overall a show worth watching.