Soul Society

All significant characters in bleach possess some degree of paranormal and superhuman abilities, and these are explained by their souls generating higher than usual levels of a paranormal energy called reiatsu (霊圧, lit. "spirit pressure"). The three predominant character types in Bleach are humans, Soul Reapers, and hollows.

The humans of Bleach are much like the residents of modern Japan. A normal human cannot see or sense spirits in any way unless that spirit possesses an artificial human body called a gigai, so humanity remains unaware of the existence of the spirit world. Very rarely a human like Ichigo Kurosaki is born who is able to see, interact, or fight with spirits, and others can gain these abilities by exposure to large amounts of spiritual energy, which happens to a number of Ichigo's friends during the course of the series.

The Soul Reapers (死神, shinigami, lit. "death god") are a military order of psychopomps based in Soul Society (尸魂界(ソウル·ソサエティ), Sōru Sosaeti), a sort of heaven.Soul society also has an academy for souls called ''Soul reaper academy''.Soul Reapers escort the souls of the dead to Soul Society through the ritual of soul burial (魂葬, konsō). Their other major duties are protecting humans from hollows, and maintaining order in Soul Society. Soul Reapers all possess supernatural powers, which manifest through their zanpakutō swords, and kidō magic spells. Several factions of ex-Soul Reapers are featured in Bleach's story, most prominent among them the members of Sōsuke Aizen's rebellion and the Visoreds, former Soul Society elites who were exiled after obtaining hollow powers. Soul Society resembles feudal Japan, and consists of two major portions: eighty residential districts called the Rukongai (流魂街, Town of Wandering Spirits), which are inhabited by the souls of the dead, and the walled city Seireitei (瀞霊廷, Court of Pure Souls), the home and military base of the Soul Reapers. The Rukongai districts are ordinally ranked, with the lower-numbered districts being more peaceful. Soul Society is nominally ruled by a king, who resides in another realm within Soul Society, but in practice is controlled by the Soul Reapers.


The Visoreds are Soul Reapers who have obtained hollow powers.The associated process is referred to as "Hollowification" (虚化, horō-ka), which was caused by Sōsuke Aizen.To gain access to their hollow powers, a Visored dons a hollow mask. This allows them to augment their Soul Reaper abilities with hollow powers, as well as giving them access to some of the generic hollow abilities. The Visoreds have not shown any sort of hierarchy, seeming to prefer a loose-knit organization.[82] While the term Visored is spelled in the manga using kanji meaning masked army (仮面の軍勢, kamen no gunzei), it is pronounced as the English visored (ヴァイザード, vaizādo), an archaic meaning being "masked". Earlier English translations used "vizard",which instead meant "mask".

Las Noches

Las noches is where Aizen and the arrancars reside.

Hueco Mundo

The hollows are a race of evil spirits who feed on the souls of humans, both living and dead. Hollows are created when the soul of a dead human is neglected by the Soul Reapers until it is overcome by loneliness and/or rage, at which point it changes form into a monster with a white mask. By going through a procedure provided by Aizen, they become an arrancar, a hollow which regains the ability to reason, obtains a more humanoid form, and can gain access to Soul Reaper abilities such as the zanpakutō. As a group, the arrancar are the primary antagonists of the Bleach series. When not hunting humans or souls in the human world hollows reside in Hueco Mundo (虚圏(ウェコムンド), Weko Mundo), a dimension between the human world and Soul Society. Hollows are undetectable as long as they remain in Hueco Mundo.


Rudobone (ルドボーン, Rudobōn?) is the leader of the Exequias (葬討部隊(エクセキアス), Ekusekiasu, Japanese for "funerary attacking force," Spanish for "funeral rites"), a group responsible for dealing with rebels and intruders in Las Noches. Unlike most arrancar, his face is completely hidden by his mask. He and his subordinates clean up after each battle, collecting data for Szayel Aporro Granz before killing any survivors: they presumably kill two of the three Privaron Espada off screen for failing to beat their opponents, and prepare to do the same with the third before being stopped by Retsu Unohana. Surprised by the arrival of a Soul Reaper captain, Rudobone and the rest of the Exequias withdraw in order to avoid conflict. Later he and the rest of the Exequias attempt to prevent Ichigo Kurosaki from reaching Orihime Inoue and Ulquiorra Schiffer, but they are intercepted and his followers are subsequently defeated by Rukia Kuchiki, Yasutora Sado, Renji Abarai, and Uryū Ishida; and is then frozen by Rukia's shikai. Rudobone has expressed disappointment and regret that he was unable to achieve the role of Espada, despite his prodigious ability. Regardless, he expresses great pride and confidence in the Espada that Aizen has chosen to lead.

He carries a zanpakutō with the name Arbola (髑髏樹(アルボラ), Arubora, Japanese for "weathered skull tree," Basque for "tree"), and in his released state he grows tree limbs that twist around his body, adorned with skulls at the tips. Rudobone is capable of balancing on top of these tree limbs. From these branches, Rudobone gains the ability to generate full-bodied minions with skulls for masks, which he refers to as his calaveras (カラベラ, Karabera, Spanish for "Skull"). These 'calaveras' apparently comprise the entirety of the Exequias, thereby making Rudobone the only real Exequias member.