|“||Feelings and emotions have no value compared to the law. Luckily, I've never been burdened by such useless sentiments. The Kuchiki clan is one of the four great noble families. We're meant to serve as examples for all Soul Reapers. How can we enforce our laws if we ourselves are not willing to obey them?||„|
|~ Byakuya Kuchiki on why he would allow Rukia to be executed|
|“||I fear I will not last much longer. As a Captain of the Gotei 13, to be unable to defeat the foul intruders who dirty the soil of Seireitei, who have brought about the deaths of many soldiers and brought sadness to those soldiers' subordinates and families... to lose my life in defeat at the hands of such wretches brings me great shame. You, meanwhile, are a human. By all rights, you should never have become involved in this conflict. Indeed, you should never even have come to this place. Yet now, at the end of my life, I ask you to forgive me the vile hubris of making one request of you. Please... protect Soul Society.||„|
|~ Byakuya Kuchiki to Ichigo Kurosaki.|
|“||If it is for the sake of my pride, there is nothing I won't destroy.||„|
|~ Byakuya Kuchiki.|
Byakuya Kuchiki is a supporting character of the anime/manga franchise Bleach. He is the captain of the 6th Division in the Soul Society and is Rukia Kuchiki's adoptive brother/brother-in-law.
He was voiced by Ryōtarō Okiayu in the Japanese version of the anime. and in the English version, by famous voice actor Dan Woren as an adult, and Yuri Lowenthal as a teenager, who also played Sasuke Uchiha and Ben Tennyson. In the live action film, he is played by Takamasa Ishihara, also known as Miyavi. In the English version of the live action film, he is voiced by Greg Chun.
As the 28th Head of the Kuchiki Clan, Byakuya acts in an aristocratic manner. He always seems serene and apathetic towards other people, even while actually deeply conflicted. He is notably calm, even in battle. He generally acts indifferent, bordering on arrogance, to most situations he is faced with, and rarely views his opponent as being worth his time. Byakuya is easily offended if his name is not used properly. As such, he views Ichigo Kurosaki with disdain for always referring to him improperly. When Byakuya talks with Ichigo, he calls him by his full name. Byakuya is very perceptive, fully aware of the limits of his abilities, and anything he states in comparison to an opponent is usually justified. When he was younger, he was quick to anger and very hot-headed, as noted by his grandfather.
Byakuya strongly believes in law and order. As a captain of the Gotei 13 and head of one of the great noble families, he works hard for a peaceful society. He feels that if someone in his position does not follow the rules as a good example, no one else will. He believes that to maintain the order, all law-breakers must be punished, even if it goes against his own wishes. Byakuya feels that "part of a captain's responsibilities is to make sure that the lieutenant's responsibilities are taken care of". In spite of his icy and regal manner, Byakuya cares for and protects those important to him. After the events of the Aizen incident, he admits law isn't perfect, and becomes more lenient towards his adoptive sister, Rukia.
Byakuya is popular among the female Soul Reapers of Soul Society, and was voted number one in the "captain we desire to release a photo book for" poll taken by the Female Shinigami Society. He likes Japanese cherry blossoms, night-time walks, spicy food, and bananas, but does not like sweets. Byakuya excels in calligraphy.
Powers & Abilities
Master Swordsman: Byakuya is a master of swordsmanship, possessing flawless precision and performing lethal attacks with little effort.
Shunpo Master: Byakuya is arguably best known for his skill in Shunpo. Having been taught by, but never beating "Goddess of Flash" Yoruichi Shihōin, he is easily one of the most proficient users of this skill in all of Soul Society.
Kidō Master: Byakuya has considerable knowledge of high level Kidō spells, casting several in quick succession, with no incantation and almost no effort, and still possessing formidable power. He has used spells up to level 81, and possesses advanced knowledge of Kidō application and consistency. He can use a low-level spell repeatedly in rapid succession and with devastating effects, as well as a counter to attacks. He uses a low-level lightning spell to burn a hole right through Ichigo's shoulder.
Immense Spiritual Power: He can exert an immense amount of spiritual pressure, which, in addition to his already admirable combat skills and finesse, makes him one of the most formidable captains. His spiritual pressure can be felt from a great distance, and it has the tendency to make people perspire in fear. It is implied by Kōga Kuchiki that he is among the few immensely strong heads of the Kuchiki Clan, further elaborating on his power level. His spiritual pressure is white.
Master Tactician: Byakuya is a highly perceptive fighter, almost immediately determining an opponent's attack patterns and weaknesses. He is a crafty tactician, effectively using Kidō to confuse his opponents. He can discern the motives and abilities of his opponents, and effectively uses his knowledge to end the battle in his favor.
Enhanced Endurance: While not having the most imposing appearance compared to other Soul Reaper captains like Kenpachi Zaraki, Byakuya is a very resilient fighter. During his fight against Ichigo, despite gaining severe injuries, Byakuya continued fighting effectively, even ignoring his wounds to the point where he seemed unfazed by them. At the end of the fight, he performed an impressive Flash Step to leave. During his fight with the 7th Espada Zommari Rureaux, Byakuya willingly damaged himself to escape from his enemy's possession attack, and continued to fight as though unaffected, eventually obtaining victory. During his fight with Tsukishima, he had his entire left arm mutilated by Senbonzakura, and still defeated the Fullbringer.
Enhanced Durability: Byakuya was able to resist the unique healing properties of Tenjirō Kirinji's hot springs without rotting away after being fully healed. Kirinji even stated he stayed in longer than anyone else. Senbonzakura (Thousand Cherry Blossoms):Senbonzakura is a regular katana. It has a simple cross guard, with an open frame much like a four-pane window. It has a bronze guard, with lavender hilt-wrapping, and a white sheath.
Scatter: It is triggered by this command.
Shikai Special Ability: In its Shikai, Senbonzakura's blade separates into a thousand tiny, slender blade fragments, which fly away from the hilt, leaving only the sword's handle in Byakuya's hand. The release can be negated before it completes, as seen when Yoruichi Shihōin wrapped the blade in cloth during Byakuya's short battle with Ichigo. However, if the release completes itself, Senbonzakura is rendered near unstoppable. While the blades are supposedly too small to be seen normally, they reflect light in such a way as to resemble cherry blossom petals. By swinging Senbonzakura's hilt, Byakuya can control the blade fragments, allowing him to shred opponents at a distance and break through almost any defense. The blades can be used for defensive purposes, as they can protect Byakuya from an incoming sword swing. In order to protect Byakuya from his own attacks in both Shikai and Bankai, Senbonzakura possesses a Hurtless Area (Woundless Zone) where it does not cut anything within 85cm of Byakuya unless he himself allows the blades to enter the area. During his second battle with Ichigo, he controlled the blade fragments with his hands to keep up with Ichigo's speed.
Senbonzakura Kageyoshi (Vibrant Display of a Thousand Cherry Blossoms):Byakuya's Bankai is a much larger version of Senbonzakura's Shikai. To activate it, Byakuya drops his sword straight down. The sword phases into the ground, as though it were a pool of water. Energy ripples expand out, turning the surrounding area dark, and within seconds, two rows of a thousand giant blades rise up from the ground. Those thousand swords scatter, and countless flying blades pierce the enemy. No one knows the exact number of blades generated, and no one can dodge or even see the movements of these blades. The number of blades is great enough that Byakuya can simultaneously use them for offense and defense. He commonly forms them into large masses to obliterate opponents instantaneously. As they move through the air like torrents of waves, they give the appearance of cherry blossoms flowing swiftly along the wind. Senbonzakura Kageyoshi's defensive use allows Byakuya to cover himself entirely in these tiny blades, forming a body shield. Unlike his Shikai, his Bankai is mentally controlled. While Byakuya can control the blades with his mind alone, using his hands allows him to do so more effectively, making the blades increase in speed threefold. Similar to his Shikai, its attack is triggered with the phrase Scatter.
Bankai Special Ability: Byakuya's Bankai has several forms, achieved by arranging the blades in different patterns. Each form presents a different advantage, such as increasing offense at the expense of defense. This variety of techniques makes Senbonzakura Kageyoshi extremely versatile. These techniques are activated by saying the name of the technique, followed by the name of his Bankai, Senbonzakura Kageyoshi.