Hello there, WordPress bloggers. I figured it was about time I did another blog. This one is a special one, since it’s being done about an anime I’ve loved for years. This series, along with Naruto and one other, got me back into manga. You know it’ll be the end of the world when you hear me say that liking anime is a bad thing. It isn’t, it’s great. You never know how much you can experience by watching anime and every day seems to have more meaning to you when you see what anime characters have given up, it inspires you to try and live a little more and try to live as awesome as they do, well maybe for a day or two, you can.
No, it’s not Naruto, it’s not Dragonball. Let’s see…..this anime centers around a young boy meeting a mysterious person who changes his life forever by giving him weird and mysterious powers he couldn’t control. But as a consequence, this also made the person who visited him lose HER powers as well, so in return, both of them had to learn to adjust to it. The boy had to learn how to be half-dead (sort of Danny Phantom-esque) and the girl had to deal with being human for a while. Sound familiar? Yu Yu Hakusho-esque?
Yup, I’m talking about Bleach. Bleach is by far one of the most interesting shows I’ve come across. Unfortunately, it runs into some of the same troubles that others have had: it got worse as it went on. How do I mean worse? I mean, the premise was very interesting, there was a lot of amusing banter between the characters, I love the way the characters got along with each other, especially the Ichigo and Rukia snarking. The SS (Soul Society) Arc was very good with all of the plot twists no one saw coming. But then after that, everything fell apart when they inserted a bunch of characters I didn’t like and dragged down the plot. After that, I really felt that Bleach started to suck, it was almost as bad as Dragonball GT. Which is sad because Bleach has a strong supporting and main cast….can you not say Ichigo is THE badass?
Like I said before, he reminds me of Yusuke from Yu Yu Hakusho or of Naruto, except for the fact that he has a ton of flaws that balance him out wonderfully, and Naruto does not. We come to Rukia Kuchiki. She is not human, she is a Soul Reaper, sent from the Soul Society to rid the world of demons known as Hollows who kill souls and living humans. Of course, these two wind up running into each other. She gives him her powers and the rest is anime history. Ichigo becomes a Soul Reaper, Shinigami, whatever (I grew up with the dub, so deal with it) Rukia has to deal with being a goddarned human and not knowing how to operate…drinks?
These two have interesting quirks, and they have an intriguing way of interacting. However, IchiRuki was by far one of the first pairings I started to ship. For those of you who don’t know what shipping means, it basically means you take characters such as Buffy and Spike or House and his girlfriend, whatever the hell her name was-her house that he smashed, and you pair it up. Even boy/boy, girl/girl ships, even though I don’t go for that, bleah.
But enough unrelated side dialogue. Now, let’s delve right into the universe of Bleach and why the Ichiruki pairing works the way it does. Let’s see…ah, here it is. Proofs for Ichiruki from the manga and anime
1. Their constant arguing. It’s similar to that of Shinichi and Ran from Detective Conan, Alice and Oz from Pandora Hearts, and Sasuke and Sakura from Naruto. There’s proof that couples who argue are closer together. Besides, I knew people who were like those two. We’d sit down at the lunch table in school one day, they’d be best friends and be all lovey-dovey with each other, and then the next they wouldn’t talk to each other for some stupid reason, and then they’d start yelling at each other, start getting mad, and then the next day they would tease each other and act like nothing really happened.
So, let’s look up an example of Ichi and Ruki arguing, (not that it’s HARD, since they always fight)
This is a good example of Ichiruki cause of how they act. This is exactly how they acted.
See, this is how they would be. Sweet and cuddly one moment, and then deadly enemies the next. Ichiruki fight in five…four, three, two, one…..*This whole fighting and arguing thing reminds me so much of my friends.*
2.From the beginning, Rukia seems drawn to Ichigo. Rather than erase his memories of her (besides the fact that he stole her powers and she had to stay by his side and teach him, ) she talks to him and he talks to her, too.
Remember the old stories where gods would be exiled from their realms because they happened to fall in love with or interact with a human? Well, doesn’t Bleach just remind you of that? It’s a tale as old as time itself; person from another world (Rukia, Soul Society) comes down from their plane of existence, meets a human (man or woman) and falls in love with them. This of course, was frowned upon. Sound familiar? In fact, the same can be said for Ichigo’s parents, Masaki and Isshin. Masaki was a Quincy, whereas Isshin was a Shinigami and they fell in love and got married.
3.Like in the very first episode where Rukia says it’s Ichigo’s fault the Hollows are attacking his family. Ichigo looks insulted and then Rukia immediately says it’s not what she meant shortly before she gets attacked by the Hollow. Ichigo gets pissed. Hmm….interesting.
4.Rukia nearly dying to save Ichigo in the first episode. Wow, that would be something I would expect to see in the middle of an anime or last. Usually, the Japanese put a lot of emphasis on sacrifice, so you can expect to see it in any anime. But to do it in the very first episode shows…..something….surprising. For her to nearly sacrifice…her, well, afterlife for the sake of a mere human who she happened to run into and describe everything to, not only mentioning the consequences of that action…..why bother saving the human when she could just erase his memory? What’s so special about Ichigo that Rukia just couldn’t bring herself to do it? So my reasoning is that she started to bond with him from the moment they met.
5.Their intro to each other, shortly before he gets her powers.
They both look into each other’s eyes, a typical romance thing, and then state their name. “Not Soul Reaper, I am Rukia Kuchiki.” He just smiles and says, “I’m Ichigo.”
6.When she goes to his school the next day, the things she says sound like she’s hitting on him.
From the manga: What’s on your mind, big boy? Such a secluded place. It almost sounds like she’s just seducing him. Ichigo’s reaction makes it even more hilarious.
7.Rukia’s smile when Ichigo agrees to help her.
8.The amount of time they spend with each other. Even their classmates think they’re an item.
When Ichi and Ruki hang out on the roof, Mizuiro says, “Together again. You two must be in love or something.” Ichigo says, “Whatever,” but his reaction to it is interesting. Rukia just looking clueless here….But they’re constantly spending time with each other, I understand they have to get along for the sake of humanity, but for two people who just met, they spend a lot of time together, if you know what I mean. It almost is like first love, and if their classmates, (who know Ichigo pretty well) think they’re dating, then they probably are. Even Tatsuki, Ichigo’s childhood friend, thinks they are.
9.Rukia in his closet.
Why does she need to be in his closet? Does anyone else get the feeling that she’s a pervert? I mean, of all things, living in his closet was pretty weird. Why does she want to be so close to him, hmmmm? Is she possibly showing an interest in him, already?
10.The Orihime-centric episode-the first episode I watched, BTW. On this particular occasion, Rukia explains to Ichigo that Hollows were once humans, but the curious thing is Rukia’s riding on Ichigo’s back and he’s letting her. Doesn’t this remind you of knights letting princesses ride on their horses in fairy tales? Doesn’t this seem rather gentlemanly of him to do and sort of out of character……Ichi normally ignores the girls, but unless he actually likes her, we have an answer. But he barely even knew this girl, and here he is already letting her ride him.
11.He shows more emotion around her than anyone else.
He smiles, and acts in a rather human way with Rukia. Not with Orihime, he’s just sort of…..expressionless.
12.Rukia healing Ichigo when he’s burning.
13.Convincing evidence for Ichiruki in the manga
Mizuiro starts to hit on Rukia. “Hey, you remember my name! I’m Mizuiro Kojima, and I’m 15 years old and my hobby is-” Suddenly, Ichigo intervenes, “Picking up chicks?”
Mizuiro says, “Whoa, not that, man!”
Ichigo, looking quite sour, points at Mizuiro and then says, “Watch out, Rukia, he may look like a dork, but he’s a real player.” Wow, somebody’s possessive of Rukia, wouldn’t you say? Again, it sounds like he’s saying, “Back off, Rukia belongs to me.” Mizuiro’s like, “Darn, he’s already taken her.”
14.Keigo thinks Ichigo snagged her.
15. Rukia smiling at Ichigo when she thinks he’s not looking. She has a bad habit of doing this, like she’ll be smiling these tiny, sneaky smiles, when she thinks it’s secret and he doesn’t notice. But it’s just at that moment where Rukia smiles the sly little smile. Where else is she smiling at him? Here she is, smiling again….and again.
16. The part where they split up and Ichigo warns her, “Please, don’t take any chances.” Double points for where he says, “You made Karin cry, you attacked a defenseless woman. You’re a four-star jerk.” He’s referring to Rukia like this? In other words, this implies he thinks highly of her.
17.This doesn’t matter, but he brings her breakfast.
18.In the Bleach book Souls, there’s a poster with Ichi and Ruki side by side, both looking somber. It says, “A Boy, a Soul Reaper. A Chance meeting. A story of fate begins.” Sound romantic? A chance meeting? That’s how some of the greatest love stories start out, like Romeo and Juliet, etc…..that’s how Suzaku and Euphie got started, and how Lelouch and Shirley met. Usually, that’s how most romances start out in fiction.
19.Taken from the book, it says Ichigo starts to trust Rukia on a deeper level, and Rukia avoids the subject of his mother, knowing it’s painful for him. Again, she has that smile on her face. What, trust Rukia on a deeper level? You mean they are more like partners, close friends, or is it implying something deeper, because they often get close to each other.
20.Rukia holding his head in her lap and wants him to not die. That was moving. It might’ve reminded her of Kaien….in that whole arc, Rukia was the only one besides Tatsuki to notice something off about Ichigo….note Orihime doesn’t know anything about him…..and doesn’t understand how he thinks or feels, instead she admires him for a lie. But Rukia understands Ichigo for who he is, she knows how he feels. That means he sees her as a close friend, which is unusual considering he doesn’t have many close friends. He has friends, but not close friends.
21. Rukia leaving Ichigo and how depressed she looks
There’s a point where Kon goes into Ichigo’s arms and Rukia says, “He’s gotten fond of you.” But she looks at him with this wistful smile on her face, and a person on Fanfiction.net says it almost feels like she was saying I’ve grown fond of you, too.” Love is on her mind when she’s running away.
22.Rukia’s note to Ichigo
She leaves a note for him to decode, which when translated, comes across as “I must go. Don’t look for me, and don’t worry about me. Burn this letter after you find it. If you can’t, stay hidden for a while.” In other words, she was sort of telling him that she doesn’t want him to get killed. She’s already imploring him to stay because she knows he won’t do that, he can’t live life without her.
23.Rukia crying to Ichigo
She pretends to hate him. The official book says Ichigo can tell her true feelings through her tears.
24.Where Rukia convinces old man Yama to leave Ichigo alone
25. Rukia calls him a fool and sees how strong he’s become.
26.The time where Ichigo is being dragged down by the Shiro thing, I don’t care if it’s a Hollow, it’s still an it to me, and Rukia arrives at the window and says, “I know you’re not the type to give up! That’s not the sort of man you are in my heart, Ichigo.” Umm….man in my heart? She kicks his ass into gear. But is that the sort of thing you say to your guy friend? It sounds more romantic than anything else. Man in my heart? You are to me-in other words, she believes in Ichigo and she knows it’s not like him to get down about something this trivial.
27.The scene where she’s drinking her chocolate milk and the girls ask if she likes Ichigo. Rukia’s reaction….this is a classic, people. She splashes her chocolate milk all over the place, wipes it off her face and then just sits there and says with this fake smile, “Ichigo and I are just friends.” Judging by the girl’s looks, they don’t believe her, and neither do I. If she didn’t love him, she wouldn’t have reacted so strongly to that.
If she was only friends with him, she would have said, “Are you kidding? Ichigo and I are just friends,” She would say, without the shocked face, without the overly forced expression….the way she did that sounded not only like it was something surprising, it was also prying into something she didn’t want them to know. In reality, it’s the opposite.
While Ichigo is fighting Byakuya for Rukia’s sake, Orihime looks out at them and says to herself, “I wish I could be first in your heart, Kurosaki-san, like Kuchiki-san is.” Look, she just admitted it. It’s rare to find a rival like Orihime who respects Ichigo’s decision and knows not to butt in. On the other hand, Orihime and Uryu make a cute couple.
29. Ichigo’s despair when she’s hurt
30.Ichigo’s training. He goes to hell and back just to save her, he even becomes a Hollow. Her life means so much to him that he’s willing to give up everything to save her.
31.He’s also very listless when she’s gone and talks about how sad it is that no one else remembers her. You just see this sad look on his face, incredibly sad. Without her, he is lonely and depressed. In the movie Fade to Black, which is non-canon, all of the things both Ichi and Ruki see are of each other.
32.Rukia. Even without her memories, she’s curious about him.
33.”I’m not worth shedding blood over.”
34. The fact that they say their first names without a suffix. In American society, it’s ordinary for me to say, “Hey, Jack,” and he’d say, “Hey, Lacie.” Americans call each other by their first names….it’s odd for an american to say, “Vessalius-sama or Baskerville-sama.” But in Japan, it’s the opposite. Acquaintances and friends you’re not very close with, you say their first name with an honorific, and the same goes with the last name. So, how the hell do you tell family members of the same name apart if they were at a meeting? Mighty confusing.
Even in Tsubasa, you see them reluctant to call each other informally, because of how impolite it sounds. Here, even though it’s a standard here in America to call each other by our first name, it’s the opposite. You get to know someone and you call them by their last name until you’re sure that you’re either in private or else you’re sure that you’re close enough to them to call them by their first name with an honorific, like Shinichi-san.
Both in English and Japanese, they say their names without a suffix. In Magic Kaito, Aoko scolds Kaito for this misdeed, saying “You shouldn’t call me by my first name!” Kaito asks, “Why?” Aoko says, “You idiot, that will make people think we’re in love. In Japan, people who go around saying their first names without an honorific are either very close friends….or lovers….*cough Shinichi and Ran.*
But you know Shinichi and Ran are childhood friends. The fact that Ichigo and Rukia both don’t call each other by formalities, is unusual. As I wrote, “To drop suffixes so soon after meeting indicates strong feelings between the other two.”
Ichigo is the Sun, and Rukia is the moon. In other words, they refuse to live without each other. The last thought Rukia has before she is supposedly killed by the Moltres-expy. Why does Byakuya interfere, unless he thinks they’re lovers? (Big Brother Instinct, much?)