|“||Ichigo, do you remember what I said when we began this fight? The things that you want to protect are not the things that I want to protect... What I wanted to protect was you Ichigo.||„|
|~ Zangetsu to Ichigo|
Zangetsu (斬月, Slaying Moon) is the manifested spirit of Ichigo Kurosaki's Zanpakutō as well as his inner Hollow. He has been variously called Hollow Ichigo (虚 (ホロウ) 一護, Horō Ichigo), more properly called The Hollow within Ichigo (一護の内面 (ないめん) の虚 (ホロウ), Ichigo no naimen no Horō) or White Ichigo (白一護, Shiro Ichigo). Zangetsu is an offshoot from the experimental Hollow White that infected Ichigo's mother Masaki Kurosaki and transmitted to Ichigo as consequence. Zangetsu stated himself to represent Ichigo's purest instincts.
Before Ichigo learned that his mother what a Quincy, Ichigo assumed the embodiment of his Quincy powers was his Zanpakutō. Claiming the name Zangetsu, and appearing as Yhwach in his younger years, the "Oldman Zangetsu" explained to Ichigo that both he and the real Zangetsu are two halves of the human's full potential as a being that possesses the traits of Soul Reaper, Hollow, Quincy, and Fullbringer.
Powers and Stats
Tier: 8-A | 7-C | At least 7-C | 7-B | 6-B | At least 5-C, likely higher
Name: Zangetsu, previously known as "Hollow Ichigo" (Ichigo's Inner Hollow)
Age: Unknown (Biologically 15-17)
Classification: Zanpakutō Spirit, Ichigo's Inner Hollow
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Psuedo-Flight, Zanjutsu Master (Art of the sword), Hakuda Expert (Hand-to-hand combat), Shunpo Expert (Speed enhancement technique), The ability to use Reiryoku and exert it as Reiatsu to increase the user's offensive power and defensive abilities, The ability to use Shikai and Bankai (Upgrades that increase his Reiatsu), Can fire slicing blasts of Reiatsu with his Zanpakutō special ability, Can sense beings with Reiatsu | Regeneration (Low-Mid only in his advanced Hollow forms), Energy Absorption, Blut Vene/Hierro (Upgrades that increase defenses beyond normal capabilities), Dimensional Teleportation (Via shadows), Cloning, The ability to summon swords and daggers
Attack Potency: Multi-City Block level (Should be at least equal to Shikai Ichigo) | Town level (Is either equal or superior to Bankai Ichigo) | At least Town level (Should be at least as strong as Hollow-Masked Ichigo) | City level (Overpowered Ulquiorra's Cero Oscuras and crushed his Lanza del Relampago) | Country level (When merged with Ichigo's Quincy powers Manifestation he is likely as strong as Post-Dangai Ichigo. Was casually fodderizing Bankai Ichigo during his Dangai Training) | At least Moon level, likely higher (On par with Ichigo Kurosaki, Zangetsu grows alongside Ichigo as his true power)
Speed: Hypersonic+ (He is lightly as fast as Shikai Ichigo, who was Mach 11+ in the Soul Society arc) | High Hypersonic (Is either equal or superior to Bankai Ichigo in speed) | At least High Hypersonic | At least High Hypersonic (Was casually blitzing R2 Ulquiorra, who in turn could casually blitz Bankai Ichigo in only his R1 form) | Massively Hypersonic+ | At least Massively Hypersonic+ (Comparable to Ichigo Kurosaki)
Lifting Strength: At least Class K (Effortlessly threw a large portion of rock with a single hand), likely much higher
Striking Strength: Multi-City Block Class | Town Class | At least Town Class | City Class (Crushed Ulquiorra's Lanza de Relampago) | Country Class (Broke Ichigo's Bankai sword in half) | At least Moon Class, likely higher
Durability: Multi-City Block level via power-scaling | Town level | At least Town level via power-scaling (Should be at least as durable as Hollow-Masked Ichigo) | City level | Country level | At least Moon level, likely higher (Comparable to Ichigo Kurosaki)
Stamina: Very high (Never been shown to get tired)
Range: Extended melee range to several meters in melee combat, several hundreds of meters to a few kilometers with projectiles
Standard Equipment: Hollow Mask; His own white version of Ichigo's Zanpakutō
Intelligence: Highly perspective, a very insightful and crafty fighter despite his arrogant and insane demeanor (He quickly realizes mistakes in Ichigo's battle tactics and corrects them, and almost instantly adapts to his opponent's battle tactics to perfectly counter them).
Weaknesses: None notable
Master Swordsman: Zangetsu's skill in swordsmanship has developed alongside Ichigo Kurosaki's. His ingenuity in it is much greater than Ichigo's, for he can use his Zanpakutō in more versatile and effective maneuvers, such as using his Shikai as a flail, with which he has demonstrated tremendous aim and control of where and how it strikes. While Ichigo fights in a deductive and logical manner, Zangetsu fights in a style more akin to a berserker, relying on instinct with little to no regard towards his own well-being.
- Deadly Darts (デッドリー・ダーツ, Deddorī Dātsu): Zangetsu uses the cloth on his blade to swing his Zanpakutō and toss it at opponents for mid-range combat. The blade moves very fast when thrown, and its impact can damage a building. If the person dodges the attack, Zangetsu can use the cloth to manage the sword's direction and try to hit the target once more. By gripping the cloth, he withdraws the blade and swings it to attack again.
Expert Hand-to-Hand Combatant: Drawing from Ichigo's experience, Zangetsu is a highly capable unarmed fighter. While mostly relying on his Zanpakutō in battle, he will occasionally use unarmed attacks to surprise and incapacitate his opponents.
Highly Perceptive Combatant: Despite his arrogant and insane demeanor, Zangetsu is a very insightful and crafty fighter. While regularly mocking Ichigo, his mocking also has deep rational knowledge behind it which ultimately helps Ichigo come to better understand himself and his powers. Zangetsu's intellect has also been useful in battle. He quickly realizes mistakes in Ichigo's battle tactics and corrects them, and almost instantly adapts to his opponent's battle tactics to perfectly counter them.
Immense Spiritual Power: Zangetsu can emit a large amount of uncontrollable red-colored Reiatsu, which can pulverize the area around him. When Zangetsu began taking over Ichigo's body, Ulquiorra Cifer, the 4th Espada, stated Ichigo's Reiatsu fluctuated from weak to higher than his own. His Reiatsu is great enough to visibly intimidate the Hollowfied Hiyori Sarugaki and the rest of the Visored.
Enhanced Strength: Zangetsu is much more powerful than Ichigo, allowing him to overpower Ichigo very easily. His physical strength is much greater than Ichigo's. After taking over Ichigo's body, he grabbed Hiyori's throat, breaking most of her mask, and would have choked her to death if the other Visored had not interfered. He can thrust his Zanpakutō into or throw an opponent through a wall.
Enhanced Speed: In addition to having greater raw strength, Zangetsu is noticeably craftier and more agile in his movements than Ichigo. He can catch his blade in midair and perform a salto before landing. He grabbed Hiyori's throat before she could defend herself. His attack patterns are generally harder to read and keep up with, allowing him to strike down his opponent easier.
Advanced Growth Rate: Like Ichigo, Zangetsu has an astounding growth rate. He gains any power Ichigo does, evidenced by his use of Bankai. He could use the black Getsuga Tenshō before Ichigo, despite both learning Bankai around the same time. His own Getsuga Tenshō is incomparably stronger than Ichigo's.
Mask Shielding: Because Ichigo's body is necessary for his very existence, Zangetsu protects it with his mask. During Ichigo's more difficult battles, he manifested the mask to block attacks on Ichigo's body from within his shihakushō, serving as a shield to stop or lessen attacks on him, sometimes saving his life. The mask blocked several hits from Renji Abarai's Zanpakutō, which could have been fatal. Although the mask was thrown away afterwards, it reappeared while Ichigo was fighting Kenpachi Zaraki, preventing his torso from being cut in two.
Possession: Zangetsu can take over Ichigo's body and powers when Ichigo falls unconscious in a fight. When this occurs, Ichigo's sclera blacken, and his irises glow golden-yellow in combination with a Hollow mask forming on the left side of his face. If the mask is broken or torn off, Ichigo will regain control over his body. During his time as the dominant spirit inside Ichigo's mind, Zangetsu could call out to Ichigo, eventually interrupting his thought process, and try to take over in the middle of a fight. If Ichigo manages to drive him back, only his eyes will change for a moment, and the mask will not begin to form. Zangetsu's influence is great enough to force Ichigo's eye to blacken while Ichigo is in his Human body.
Zangetsu (斬月, Slaying Moon)
Since the inner Hollow Ichigo inherited from his mother fused with his original Shinigami powers, Ichigo's inner Hollow is also his Zanpakutō spirit. Zangetsu and the manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers are both the source of Ichigo's power and share the same spiritual body in Ichigo's inner world, the stronger presence retaining more control (and overall appearance) of their body. Zangetsu takes the form of an all-white (clothes and being), somewhat deranged version of Ichigo's Shinigami form with a strong desire to take control of Ichigo's body and power for himself. Zangetsu originally used a black Zangetsu obtained from the manifestation. However, after he becomes the dominant spirit inside Ichigo's mind, Zangetsu carries his own white version of Ichigo's Zanpakutō.
- Shikai: The Shikai form of Zangetsu resembles an oversized khyber knife. It has no tsuba and no proper hilt; what Zangetsu holds is the cloth-wrapped tang. The sword is as long as Zangetsu is tall (1.75 meters), and has a silver blade with a black edge. The cloth wrapping on the tang seems to react to Zangetsu's will, changing length at a thought or twining about the blade in an impromptu sheath. When in combat, the cloth falls away when necessary, shrinking back to a manageable size. The cloth can be used to swing the weapon like a flail and toss it at opponents for mid-range combat, and can wrap up wounds. The wide blade can be used as a shield from incoming attacks. Unlike most Zanpakutō, which can be sealed into their original form, the blade is always in its Shikai form. Yoruichi Shihōin states this Zanpakutō is a full-time released form type because of Ichigo's vast but uncontrollable Reiryoku upon generation of it.
Shikai Special Ability: While primarily used for melee combat, the blade possesses a special ability.
- Getsuga Tenshō (月牙天衝, Moon Fang Heaven-Piercer): At the instant of the slash, the blade absorbs Zangetsu's Reiryoku and releases highly condensed Reiatsu at the tip of the blade, which magnifies the slash attack and flies forward. This slash takes the form of a crescent moon or the shape of a wave.
Bankai: Tensa Zangetsu (天鎖斬月, Heaven Chain Slaying Moon): It is considered completely out of the ordinary for any Zanpakutō. Unlike most Bankai, which usually create some sort of massive creature or effect, Zangetsu's Bankai actually shrinks his sword down to a daitō (Japanese long sword) with a white blade, crossguard, and handle instead. The crossguard has four prongs bent out to form the shape of the manji (which is the kanji for "ban," meaning "full", as in "full release"). The blade itself is durable enough to withstand even the strongest of attacks, making it quite effective in blocking and deflecting incoming attacks. It can withstand getting crushed by force. Instead of the cloth Zangetsu's Shikai had, a short length of chain with a broken link at the end dangles from the base of the hilt. The chain can be used to spin the sword with one finger. In addition to his sword, Zangetsu's robe is replaced with a long-sleeved, ankle-length white coat with black lining which is closed at his chest and left to flare out into ragged ends. Zangetsu wore a black shihakushō after Ichigo stabbed him, causing his white shihakushō to turn black.
Bankai Special Ability: Tensa Zangetsu, much like its Shikai form, is used heavily for melee combat, but possesses a certain special ability.
- Enhanced Getsuga Tenshō: Tensa Zangetsu retains the use of Getsuga Tenshō, which can be used in the same manner, but in an enhanced form. When used in Bankai, these potent blasts, white with a red outline, can have their path controlled, and possess explosively augmented power and speed. When Zangetsu uses this technique in the physical world, it is black in color. During Byakuya Kuchiki's fight with Ichigo, Byakuya refers to this attack as a "Kuroi Getsuga" (黒月牙, Black Moon Fang), referring to the attack's darkened color. Both Ichigo and Zangetsu have stated the Kuroi Getsuga was originally the latter's technique.
- Hyper-Speed Combat: Zangetsu takes all the power of his Bankai and compresses it into a small, condensed form, which allows him to perform high-speed combat. His new speed allows him to move behind a Shunpo master like Byakuya and attack him. He can appear in front of a Shunpo expert like Ichigo, leaving no time to react.
- Enhanced Strength: His physical strength increases greatly, shattering Byakuya's Senkei sword with his bare hand, and throwing Ichigo into a building, giving him a serious wound to his forehead as a result.
- Enhanced Durability: Unlike Ichigo, Zangetsu took a short time to recover and did not get wounded after being thrown into a building. He can deflect Ichigo's Bankai-enhanced Getsuga Tenshō with a single unarmed hand.
- Enhanced Spiritual Power: His Reiatsu is so intense and rough, as well as thick and heavy, it can suffocate Humans just by being in the general vicinity of his released Bankai, and easily surpass Byakuya's Reiatsu. His Reiatsu is solid in his Bankai, despite him only recently acquiring it. While in Bankai, Zangetsu's Reiatsu turns white, with a red outline.
- Enhanced Bankai Duration: Since all of his energy is compressed, usage of his Bankai does not expel as much Reiatsu as other Bankai from the point of activation, allowing him to use Tensa Zangetsu for a much longer duration than any other Bankai users of his level.
Hollow Form: When Zangetsu takes full possession of Ichigo's body, the body undergoes a full transformation into a Hollow creature. His mask resembles a Human skull, complete with a jaw joint and rounded forehead, and has dark red stripes on the left side. This full Hollow is a white humanoid lizard with three-toed feet and a tail, with black marks all over its noticeably more muscular body. It possesses long orange hair and reptilian eyes seen through the eyeholes on its full mask. Unlike normal Hollows, this form used an actual weapon, using Ichigo's Zanpakutō.
- High-Speed Regeneration: Like some Hollows, Zangetsu possesses the ability to instantly regenerate any wound and even a missing limb.
- Enhanced Getsuga Tenshō: Zangetsu's Getsuga Tenshō completely surrounds his blade. The extent of its power is currently unknown, for it has never been utilized in this form.
- Enhanced Spiritual Power: Even when only partially transformed, Zangetsu's Reiatsu greatly increases. Upon awakening, the Hollow form broke free from a full-powered Bakudō #75. Gochūtekkan.
- Cero (虚閃 (セロ), Sero; Spanish for "Zero", Japanese for "Hollow Flash", Doom Blast in the Viz translation"): Zangetsu can fire a potent Cero from either his fingertips or his entire hand. This Cero is crimson and tri-focused. The blast is strong enough to force Love Aikawa to summon his Hollow mask.
- Enhanced Strength: Zangetsu pushed back Kensei Muguruma with little effort and put all of the Visored on the defensive with brute force.
- Extra Appendage: In his full Hollow form, Zangetsu can grow a large, worm-like appendage from various locations on his body (during his Visored training it emerged from his arm, and during his fight against the manifestation it emerged from his chest).
- Enhanced Durability: In addition to advanced recovery powers, Zangetsu is equally difficult to injure. After being elbowed and pushed back by Kensei, he got up and continued his assault.
New Hollow Form
New Hollow Form: Ichigo later has his body taken over by Zangetsu once again. This time, the full transformation is very physically different in appearance, and far more powerful than the previous one. In this form, Ichigo has long straight hair, reaching down to his waist, and a Hollow hole, smaller than his previous one, decorated with markings stretching from the hole across his chest and shoulders. He has retractable claws on his fingertips and toes, small, furry red tufts, two starting from his collarbone and stretching around his neck and one each on his wrists and ankles, and white skin. In this new form, he has a different Hollow mask. It covers Ichigo's entire head, and its markings are different, for it has four spike-shaped marks, two of them stopping by the forehead and the other two stretching past the eyes and teeth, going past his chin and joining with the marks on his chest. There are small marks resembling a heart, but with the top and bottom open, extending from the inner corners of his eyes. The mask features two long forward-pointing horns, with black strips extending from their center towards the tips. Zangetsu has his own version of this form, with the opposite colors alternating black with white and vice versa.
- Chain (チェイン, Chein): After transforming, Zangetsu called his Zanpakutō to his hand with a simple gesture.
- Enhanced Cero: Zangetsu's crimson Cero has become exceedingly more powerful, completely overwhelming Ulquiorra's Cero Oscuras and causing large-scale destruction to a large portion of the surroundings. It is fired from between the tips of his horns. However, if one of the horns are cut off, he is unable to form the Cero properly, and any energy already gathered will implode.
- Immense Strength: In this form, Zangetsu can destroy a large portion of Las Noches' roof with the wake of a single slash of his sword. He easily tore off Ulquiorra's left arm without much resistance from his Hierro. He crushed Ulquiorra's strongest attack, Lanza del Relámpago, and forced it to collapse before Ulquiorra even got a chance to throw it. He easily slashed Ulquiorra from his left shoulder to his lower right hip through his Hierro.
- Immense Durability: Zangetsu's durability has greatly increased, allowing him to withstand several large explosions in his battle with Ulquiorra at close range with no visible damage. His skin and hands are strong enough to catch and hold onto Ulquiorra's strongest attack, Lanza del Relámpago, without any damage inflicted on him.
- Sonído: Zangetsu moves at exceedingly fast speeds, appearing behind Ulquiorra and throwing his severed arm at him before the former could even turn to face him. Ulquiorra states his speed is not reached by the use of Shunpo; he actually uses Sonído.
- Enhanced Spiritual Power: Zangetsu's already vast Reiryoku increases drastically, easily overwhelming the power of Ulquiorra's second Resurrección. The sheer strength of his Reiatsu terrified Rukia Kuchiki, Renji Abarai, and Yasutora Sado at the bottom of Las Noches.
- High-Speed Regeneration: After Ulquiorra shatters Ichigo's mask, the energy from his Hollow transformation went above him and came down as some sort of energy, which regrew the lost flesh which made his Hollow hole (as a result of Ulquiorra's Cero Oscuras) and fully healed him of his injuries from Ulquiorra, who commented on it to this effect.
After the manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers pulls Zangetsu out of Ichigo during the latter's Dangai training, the two spirits merged into one form, which combined aspects from both spirit's appearances; Zangetsu's white Bankai coat, black horn mask remnant, white-colored hair, and left Hollowfied eye alongside the manifestation's appearance, right blue eye, and black Bankai sword, though the sword's tsuba is white like Zangetsu's. In this form, the manifestation explains he and Zangetsu were technically two parts of the same being, with both of them together representing all of Ichigo's spiritual powers. Ichigo claims if this merged spirit really wanted to, he could have defeated him from the start of their battle, further stating they were this far apart in power.
- Enhanced Strength: The merged spirit is strong enough to break Ichigo's Bankai sword completely in two.
Enhanced Strength: Zangetsu possesses a large degree of physical strength. During Ichigo's Bankai Training, he sent Ichigo flying away and into a boulder with a single strike to the face.
Blut Activation: As the manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers, Zangetsu can activate Ichigo's Blut in order to aid him in combat.
- Blut Vene: During Ichigo's fight with Kenpachi Zaraki, Zangetsu forcibly sealed a wound which was previously gushing blood. Later, he saved Ichigo when he was fighting against Yhwach by stopping Yhwach's blade with Blut Vene.
Clones: In battle, Zangetsu is able to produce multiple solid clones of himself, allowing him to outnumber his enemy and attack from multiple directions simultaneously. However, doing so appears to reduce his sheer attack strength.
Shadow: Zangetsu can travel between realms through the shadows by extending his overcoat to obscure himself and whomever he wishes to teleport. During Ichigo's fight with Kenpachi Zaraki, Zangetsu transported Ichigo and himself into Ichigo's inner world.
Broadsword: Zangetsu can manifest a broadsword with a cross-guard shaped like wings. The sword is completely engulfed in Reishi flames.
Key: Base/Shikai | Bankai | H1 Form | H2 Form | Merged Form | Asauchi Zangetsu