Bleach (stylized as BLEACH) is a Japanese anime television series based on Tite Kubo’s manga of the same name. It was produced by Studio Pierrot and directed by Noriyuki Abe. The series aired on TV Tokyo from October 2004 to March 2012, spanning 366 episodes. The story follows the adventures of Ichigo Kurosaki after he obtains the powers of a Soul Reaper—a death personification similar to the Grim Reaper—from another Soul Reaper, Rukia Kuchiki. His newfound powers force him to take on the duties of defending humans from evil spirits and guiding departed souls to the afterlife. The anime adaptation includes original storylines not found in the manga with repeated appearances and stories containing these original characters.
Viz Media obtained foreign television and home video distribution rights to the Bleach anime in March 2006. Bleach was broadcast in the United States on Adult Swim from September 2006 to January 2015. The series’ international release extends through dozens of countries in several languages, such as Spanish, French, German, Brazilian Portuguese and Tagalog.
In March 2020, it was announced that the manga’s final story arc, “Thousand-Year Blood War”, would receive an anime adaptation.