Bleach: Why did Urahara create the Hogyoku? Explained

Kisuke Urahara (Image via Tite Kubo)
Kisuke Urahara (Image via Tite Kubo)

The Tite Kubo classic Bleach is back on screen with the Thousand Year Blood War and the franchise continues to enjoy its ever-growing popularity. First debuted in 2004, the anime ran until 2012 before the final arc of the manga was adapted almost a decade later, breaking the internet with its phenomenal return to the screen.

With the original series being concluded a while back, some details in the series need a recap for most of the fans.

Disclaimer: This article contains spoilers for the Bleach manga/anime.

Bleach: Urahara wanted to learn the nature of Soul Reapers and Hollows in more depth

There are a plethora of different theories as to why Urahara created the powerful Hogyoku in Bleach. Being somewhat of a mad scientist, Kisuke Urahara was determined to learn the nature of Soul Reapers and Hollows in more depth, and to do so, he wanted to break the barrier that exists between the two entities that keep them from influencing each other.

As a consequence, he accidentally invented the initial prototype of the “Breakdown Sphere”, or the Hogyoku. As to why he thought of doing it, some say he wanted to learn more about the hybridization, while others believe it was an attempt to try and strengthen the Shinigami souls.

Before we dive into the history of the Hogyoku in Bleach, let us take a look at what the Hogyoku actually is. The Hogyoku is a small bluish-purple spherical substance that is believed to possess the power of blurring the barrier between the two races, the Hollow and the Soul Reaper.

As a result, one can be influenced by the power of the other and allow an entity to access the powers of both. But what the Hogyoku is really capable of is sensing the hearts that come in its vicinity and manifest their darkest desires, making the orb an extremely dangerous substance to behold.

Sosuke Aizen, having known of the disastrous powers of the orb he himself had created, wanted to study it more and understand the true extent of its powers. For this reason, he caused a number of Soul Reaper captains and lieutenants to undergo Hollowfication.

It was an experiment that resulted in catastrophe. Urahara, in an attempt to reverse the Hollowfication and restore their original souls, used his own Hogyoku on them. However, his efforts were in vain as he was unsuccessful in totally bringing them back.

Instead, the newfound Hollow powers had made them go rogue and become Visoreds, which in turn led Urahara to flee to the living world with the Hogyoku.

Aizen knew that both his and Urahara’s Hogyoku were incomplete, so he sought to attain them both in an attempt to coalesce them into a single entity in hopes of completing it. His plan was successful after gaining access to both the orbs as the seal that Urahara had placed on them was broken.

Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War has been confirmed to return with a second season in July 2023. Viewers can stream the series on Netflix and Disney+. Stay tuned for more updates on the anime and other shows like One Piece, Tokyo Revengers, Chainsaw Man, and more.