Bleach fans have seen glimpses of the so-called ‘demon’ that resides in Kenpachi Zaraki. During the Arrancar arc, he defeated a rampaging Nnoitora Gilga by unleashing a part of his Riatsu sealed by his eyepatch and using two hands to wield his Zanapakuto. Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War featured Zaraki ripping a Sternritter’s throat out with his hands and decimating the other two.
Over the course of the anime, Zaraki has been termed the ‘brute’, the ‘devil’, and in Gremmy Thoumeaux’s words which he later regretted, a ‘monster.’ The 20th episode of Bleach TYBW saw the eleventh Kenpachi use his Shikai form, an extended and much more powerful version of the Nozarashi Zanapakito, to cut a tangible meteor in half and even fracture space.
While the animation for the fight with Gremmy has gained much praise, Bleach fans are now looking excitedly toward the introduction of Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai in the series. His duel with Sternitter Gerard Valkyrie is expected to break the internet once again.
When is Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai revealed in Bleach?
In the Bleach manga, Kenpachi Zaraki uses his Bankai for the first time in chapter 669. It is in one last desperate attempt to stop Gerard Valkyrie, who possesses the Shrift ‘M’ that stands for Miracle. Gerard has the power to restructure his body and covert any physical damage to boost his size and power: making it almost impossible to bring him down with brute strength alone.
Despite all the warnings from Toshiro Hitsugaya and Kenpachi Zaraki, Zaraki undertakes the mission of cutting Gerard Valkyrie in half. He slashes and rips frantically until the Sternitter overpowers him. It is then that Yachiru, Kenpachi’s former Lieutenant, reveals that he knew how to use his Bankai if he only used her properly.
Many Bleach fans theorize that Yachiru is an extension of Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai powers. This is why it is only through her insistence that Zaraki is able to change form. On the other hand, Yachiru could be the manifestation of Kenpachi’s inner child, representing the lost innocence of his troubled childhood, and it is only when Zaraki comes to terms with his past that he is able to activate his Bankai.
What is the name of Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai?
Interestingly, Tite Kubo never revealed the name of Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai. The second release of Nozarashi leads to Zaraki turning into a monster or rather the Devil incarnate- his skin becomes red with black stripes, horns protrude from the side of his head, and the uncontrollable strength coursing through his veins rends one of his arms.
Prior to his Bankai release, Kenpachi hears Nozarashi talk to him. His Zanapakuto, theoretically, appears in the form of Yachiru Kusagishi and tells him that he could beat anyone with his Bankai. Kubo may have hinted that Yachiru herself is Kenpachi Zaraki’s Bankai, his incredible powers manifested into a totally different being because his body wasn’t able to handle the brute strength.
Often called ‘The Demon’ Bankai, Kenpachi Zaraki’s fight with Sternritter Gerard Valkyrie ended rather quickly after his transformation. He cut the giant Gerard in half but the latter survived by activating his Quincy: Vollständig, Aschetonig power. Zaraki misses the second sword strike due to his arm being torn by his own sheer power and he is swatted away by Valkyrie.
Hitsugaya and Byakuya then battle the reformed and enraged Gerard Valkyrie until Ywach, the Supreme Leader of the Quincies, decides to use Auschwalen to absorb Valkyrie’s power and kills the Sternritter in the process.