The ongoing anime series adapting Bleach‘s final story arc is due to end its first part soon. An announcement on social media confirmed that the first part of Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War season 1 will close out on December 26, 2022. That day will see the last two episodes of the “season,” 12 and 13, aired as a combined one-hour special. [Thanks, ANN!]
The series adapts the final story arc of Bleach, which was not covered before the first anime series was cancelled in 2012. The titular Thousand Year Blood War refers to the longstanding and largely hidden history of animosity between the Soul Reapers and Quincies. Ichigo’s companion Uryuu Ishida long thought himself the last surviving Quincy, but a hidden kingdom called the Wandenreich survived in the shadows. Led by the Quincy King Ywach, the Wandenreich awakens, launching a devastating invasion of Soul Society and defeating many of its strongest protectors.
The current Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War season 1 episode, which aired on December 12, 2022, was titled “The Drop”, after the 59th volume of the manga. It covered the duel between Gotei 13 Squad 11 Captain Kenpachi Zaraki and Squad 4 Captain Retsu Unohana. They fought to improve Kenpachi’s fighting strength ahead of further battles against the Quincies of the Wandenreich.
The next episode of Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War is episode 11, will air as scheduled on December 19, 2022. It’s titled “Everything But The Rain,” the same as the 60th volume of the Bleach manga. It’s also the name of a story arc from the manga, one that focuses on an important and heretofore unknown incident involving Ichigo Kurosaki’s parents.
The last episodes of Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Part 1 will air on December 26, 2022, and the next “season” start date has yet to be announced. Four are planned in total. A DVD and Blu-ray collection of the season will launch in April 2023 in Japan.