Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War - Why does Ichigo have two Zanpakuto? Explained

Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War - Why does Ichigo have two Zanpakuto? Explained (Image via Pierrot)
Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War - Why does Ichigo have two Zanpakuto? Explained (Image via Pierrot)

The first part, Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War, has created a lot of buzz with the return of one of the most anticipated "Big 3." Ever since the sequel’s premiere, which promises to unravel most of the confounding plot holes that have caused a great deal of uncertainty, the entire Bleach fandom has been on the edge of their seats, anticipating what the future holds for the protagonist.

The major revelations made in the first cour have broken the silence on Ichigo’s dormant abilities, as it was finally unveiled that his Shinigami abilities, including his Zanpakuto, were Quincy's spirit weapons in disguise.

Fans were in a quandary after the first part’s ending as the Third Seated Officer of the Royal Guard’s Zero Division, Oetsu Nimaiya, forged two Zanpakuto for Ichigo, different from his conventional blade.

Disclaimer: This article contains major spoilers for Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War.

Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War - Both of Ichigo’s Zanpakuto channel different power sources

Oetsu reforged Ichigo’s Zanpakuto using an actual Asauchi, as his former blade was manifested by the fusion between his inner Hollow and his Shinigami powers triggered when Rukia made him a Substitute Shinigami. Ichigo’s actual prowess, which was suppressed until now, was unleashed after he gained his true Zanpakuto and came to terms with his true heritage and powers.

His real Zanpukto took the form of two different blades. The longer one that looks like a khyber blade represents his inner Hollow fused with his true Asauchi and the shorter one that resembles a trench knife represents his Quincy heritage.

Ichigo keeps his longer blade on his back while the shorter one stays on his right hip. As Ichigo picked the swords while they were still blazing hot, there was never a hilt crafted by Oetsu. Ichigo enveloped the grips in normal pieces of cloth.

As seen in Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War episode 13, The Blade is Me, Oetsu breaks it to Ichigo that his Zangetsu was never really a true Zanpakuto, as all this time he was relying on the powers masquerading as Shinigami abilities. After confronting old man Zangetsu, Ichigo learns that it was a manifested spirit of his Quincy powers that he never acknowledged during the first half of Bleach.

During episode 12, the penultimate installment to part 1 of Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War, Everything But the Rain June Truth, Isshin unravels the mystery encircling Masaki Kurosaki’s death.

Having a pure heritage, which came to be known as "Echt," Masaki was a pure-blooded Quincy, which is why it was surprising how a low-level hollow like Grand Fisher could break through her ultimate defense, "Blut."

Isshin later disclosed in the episode that Masaki lost to Grand Fisher because her abilities suddenly vanished due to Auswählen or the Holy Selection. After Yhwach’s awakening from being sealed for almost a millennium, he forcibly took the power of all the pure-blooded Quincies.

As Ichigo assimilated his mother’s Quincy abilities, his mixed ancestry didn’t let his Quincy powers get stolen like the others. However, Yhwach knew about his existence due to his Omni-Precognition ability of The Almighty.

Now that Ichigo has finally unlocked his true potential, the upcoming cour, Bleach: Thousand-year Blood War Part 2, The Separation, will see him in his most dominant form of all time as the epic clash between the Soul Society and Wandereich is expected to reach unparalleled heights, promising an enthralling continuation of the arc.