Who Is Ichigo’s Father? Ichigo’s Father In Bleach Explained!

By Shonen laws, there’s always something special about missing parents; knowing the much-dreaded truth makes them several times stronger!

© TITE KUBO / SHUEISHA, TV TOKYO, dentsu, Pierrot

What truly makes a Shonen protagonist strong is actually his parents either dead or missing from action.

Yupp, we’ve seen this in Naruto, Hunter X Hunter, Dragon Ball, and the same applies to Bleach and Ichigo Kurosaki as well!

His wacky dad is still missing the long-gone mother of the household. Yet in this seemingly normal home, Ichigo could see spirits, and one day he could even see a girl who called herself a shinigami.

Cough, Rukia Cough.

That was the start of a crazy adventure but everything about Ichigo’s origins was shrouded in mystery and eventually, Ichigo’s progress seemed impossible without uncovering his roots.

And by Shonen laws, there’s always something special about missing parents of the protagonist, where knowing the much-dreaded truth makes them several times stronger!

Without ado, let’s take a look at Ichigo’s dad Isshin Kurosaki!

Who is Ichigo’s dad? What was he like?

From the beginning, Ichigo’s enormous reiatsu reserves shocked Rukia when she transferred her powers to him. This was no coincidence but due to his unique heritage. Ichigo had latent shinigami powers inherited from his father, Isshin, who was a shinigami himself 20 years prior. In the Arrancar saga, Isshin revealed he possessed reiatsu equal to that of a captain.

Talk about underplaying his own power cuz Isshin actually was the captain of the 10th division of Gotei 13! Yup, before our chibi Captain Hitsugaya took over, Rangiku had Isshin to pester with her habits.

In fact, Hitsugaya was the third seat in the 10th division and was promoted to captain later on. This was probably because Rangiku couldn’t be the captain, thanks to a dude with glasses in the past stealing a huge part of her reiatsu.

Anyway, Isshin was a great captain, that’s for sure, but his ancestry is worth looking at as well because he is also a descendant of the Shiba clan, which is one of the four noble Shinigami families! Yep, the same family Kukaku and Kaien belonged to, except that Isshin was the head of a branch.

Being from such a reputed family, you can probably guess that Isshin had an incredibly high amount of reiatsu and was extremely skilled. This is also reflected in how Ichigo’s reiatsu surprised even Byakuya, because he himself was from a noble clan as well.

Isshin was deeply committed to his role as a Shinigami, frequently addressing issues in the Soul Society himself. This empathy likely influenced Ichigo’s life significantly.

During Isshin’s tenure as captain, Aizen had already begun his dreadful experiments with the Hogyoku, turning civilians and shinigamis into hollows and expelling Urahara and others from the Soul Society.

Upon learning from Hitsugaya and Rangiku about the disappearances in the Human World, Isshin acknowledged the ongoing Gotei 13 investigation but decided to personally confront the perpetrator.

In a twist of unfortunate events, Isshin faced a hollow in the Human World. Prioritizing his squad’s safety, he had dismissed them from participating. He also sent the deputy shinigami assigned to Naruki Town home, unaware that the danger would be too overwhelming for him alone.

Isshin encountered an unusual Hollow in Karakura Town. It had a black appearance and emitted a reiatsu similar to a Shinigami’s. Surprisingly, it fought with the strategy of a menos rather than a typical mindless Hollow. As the battle intensified, Isshin warned a deputy Shinigami to retreat, sensing the Hollow was about to unleash a Cero. He questioned the Hollow about who was controlling Soul Society.

Isshin’s suspicion was correct; the creature seemed to be a Shinigami transformed into a Hollow, devoid of sentience and unable to communicate. Recognizing the threat, Isshin drew his Zanpakuto, Engetsu, to finish it off.

However, he was struck from behind by someone and, well, you guessed it right, it couldn’t have been anyone other than Aizen himself who had been watching the scenario play out all this while.

Isshin dared the Shinigami, who attacked him, to reveal himself but it was of no use. In fact, the wound Isshin had taken made him incapable of using his Bankai and forced him to be on the defensive in a lethal battle.

Even then, Isshin somehow managed to sever an arm of the Hollow but it was in vain because it continued attacking him and almost fired a Cero at point blank range that was sure to not just take Isshin out but also kill him.

After Ichigo is expelled from the Soul King Palace, he ends up in front of his home and flees when Isshin greets him. Later, Isshin visits Ichigo at Ikumi Unagiya’s home in his Shinigami form. Isshin reveals that Urahara informed him about the events in Soul Society and deduces that the Royal Guard sent Ichigo back home.

Isshin then decides it is time to reveal Ichigo’s heritage, explaining that Ichigo is neither a Shinigami nor a normal human, but that his mother was a Quincy. He recalls his past as a captain and meeting Masaki, Ichigo’s mother. Isshin also explains the true reason behind Masaki’s death, his inability to save her, and the Quincy prophecy. He tells Ichigo about Yhwach’s blood in all Quincies, shocking him. Afterward, Ichigo thanks Isshin and leaves, only to be whisked away by Mera to the Soul King Palace.

Later, Isshin mentions he will join Yuzu for lunch after seeing a patient. Much later, Isshin and Ryūken Ishida use an item belonging to Sōken Ishida to create a portal to Wahrwelt. Isshin expresses gratitude for Sōken’s actions, and Ryūken replies with a remark about his father’s habits. Isshin then accompanies Ryūken as he gives Uryū an arrowhead made of silver.

Isshin is the epitome of chaotic charisma—a whirlwind of goofiness, boundless energy, and an arsenal of facial expressions that could rival a theater troupe. He’s the kind of dad who might ambush you at breakfast for being late to dinner the night before or wake you up with an impromptu wrestling match. All in the name of tough love, of course, because according to him, it’s all about making you stronger (and it seems to have worked for Ichigo).

In his Gotei 13 days, Isshin redefined “lazy captain” with a flair for delegation that rivaled corporate CEOs. He’d rather have his subordinates handle the paperwork while he cracked jokes, much to the chagrin of poor Rangiku Matsumoto, who had the thankless task of reigning him in. Yet amidst the chaos, he saw potential in the diligent Hitsugaya, dubbing him the future of their division on a whim.

Let’s not forget Isshin’s cheeky side—yes, he’s that dad. From commenting on Rangiku’s glistening “assets” to casually observing his son’s precarious position as a piggyback chauffeur, he’s never one to miss a chance for a risqué remark. But when faced with a naked Masaki, even this irrepressible joker blushed and begged her to dial down the casual vibes.

All in all, if it wasn’t for Isshin saving his wife and setting the stage, Ichigo and the story of Bleach wouldn’t have happened.

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