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An Arrancar (破面 (アランカル), Arankaru; Spanish for "To Tear Off", Japanese for "Ripped Mask") is a Hollow that has removed its mask and has gained Shinigami-like powers.[1]


Arrancar are a group of Hollows that gained similar powers to that of a Shinigami by removing their masks. The individuals that Aizen turned into Arrancar using the Hōgyoku generally possess powers far beyond those of previous Arrancar, with some exceptions like Coyote Starrk and Ulquiorra Cifer.[2] Especially powerful Arrancar were assigned ten numbers by Sōsuke Aizen and came to be known as the Espada.[3]


Arrancar are the result of Hollows removing their masks. However, an average Hollow removing their mask would not be a problem for the Gotei 13: to hold their own against the Gotei 13, the ones removing their masks would need to be Gillian or stronger.[4] Pseudo-Arrancar have not developed much in the past few decades. Sōsuke Aizen was the first to create a breakthrough; Aizen managed to create a full Arrancar by using the Hōgyoku.[5]

Power Development[]

The number that the Arrancar (with numbers 11 and above) have are not the order of their strength, but rather the order of their birth. First, via the Hōgyoku, they are reborn from Hollows into Arrancar. Then, according to the order in which they are born, they were assigned a number, starting with eleven.[6]

Arrancar vs. Hollow[]

Arrancar and ordinary Hollows differ in several ways:

Nnoitra's Hole

Nnoitra's Hollow hole.

  • Humanoid Form: A Menos usually takes on a Human shape when it becomes an Arrancar. The only ones that will definitely get a 100% Humanoid form are Vasto Lorde-class Menos. For the remaining two levels, there are many who don't get a completely Humanoid form, despite becoming Arrancar. Therefore, the closer one looks to a Hollow, the lower its power of reasoning.[7] There have been Arrancar who have claimed that they gave up their Humanoid forms in order to obtain enormous power.[8] All Arrancar retain a hole in them somewhere, as well as fragments of their Hollow form (in the shape of protrusions and partial masks). A number of Arrancar have tried to conceal the remnants of their past whilst others choose to hide their faces completely to escape unwanted attention. Most also have a colored marking of some sort on their face, although some only gain these markings upon the release of their Zanpakutō (Ex: Nnoitra, Szayelaporro, and Harribel). A few cases that include visible markings without the release of a Zanpakutō include Ulquiorra's tear marks, Sung-Sun's pink dots, the dashes under Grimmjow's eyes, the marking which runs across Nelliel's cheekbones and nose, and the marks on Yammy's cheek bones.
  • Physiology: Uryū Ishida theorized that Arrancar share not only the powers of Shinigami, but also their anatomy. During his battle with Cirucci Sanderwicci, he aimed for the area where the Chain of Fate would be located, and upon striking it Cirucci immediately lost not only her release form and mask fragment, but seemingly all traces of her former power.[9]
  • Estigma (仮面紋 (エスティグマ), Esutiguma; Spanish for "Scar" or "Stigma", Japanese for "Mask's Crest"): The pattern on an Arrancar's face. It is potentially the remaining part of a mask and is unique to each individual. The pattern may appear when performing Resurrección for many Arrancar.[10]
  • Hole: One of the most distinctive characteristics of an Arrancar is the hole in their body. It is said to represent the lack of a heart that is difficult to fill.[11]
  • Zanpakutō: The Arrancar seal the nuclei of their abilities within the form of a sword. It is entirely different from what Shinigami use. When they release their Zanpakutō's seal, they unleash their true power and their true form.[12] The combat efficiency of an Arrancar with a released Zanpakutō is increased several times over.[13] Therefore, an Arrancar's release of their Zanpakutō is merely a temporary restoration to their former selves, granting them any powers their Hollow form possesses. The act of release is called Resurrección (帰刃 (レスレクシオン), Resurekushion; Spanish for "Resurrection", Japanese for "Returning Blade"), which is activated with a command phrase followed by the name of the sword. An Espada's Resurrección is claimed to be different from that of a normal Arrancar.[14]


The Arrancar under Aizen's command have a standard theme for their clothing. Their uniforms consist of a white jacket, black sash, white hakama, black tabi and white zōri that bear an opposing similarity to a Shinigami's zōri; in essence, the uniforms are basically inverted Shinigami uniforms. Arrancar uniforms display more variation than those worn by Shinigami however.

Personality Traits & Mindsets[]

While most of the Arrancar either develop or retain their own personality traits, the majority of Arrancar appear to be similarly cold, cruel, sadistic, ambitious, impatient, selfish, overconfident, ruthless, arrogant, impulsive, brutal, relentless, battle hungry, overbearing, short-tempered, indifferent, and/or egotistical.

Not all Arrancar residing in Hueco Mundo are loyal to Aizen, but they prefer not to interfere with his plans. However, many naturally evolved Arrancar felt it necessary to align themselves with him to obtain more power. While there are Arrancar who choose to follow Aizen in the hopes he will deliver them salvation, others ally with him purely out of respect. As Aisslinger Wernarr put it, Aizen is someone who is fearless, which creatures born out of fear and pain, such as Hollows, find admirable. Despite their pride, many Arrancar will side with a stronger force, such as the Wandenreich, to survive. Despite being enslaved by the Wandenreich there are a few Arrancar who have remained loyal to Sōsuke Aizen like Loly and Menoly.[15]

Although Arrancar are Hollows who have gained Shinigami-like powers, most still refer to themselves as Hollows (such as Ulquiorra, Zommari, Grimmjow, etc.)[16][17][18] On the other hand, Asguiaro Ebern abandoned his identity as a Hollow and Arrancar when he entered services to the Wandenreich.[19]

Powers & Abilities[]

Like Shinigami, Arrancar have a multitude of combat skills and abilities, some of which are similar to those of the former, and some of which are variations on ordinary Hollow powers.

  • Bala (虚弾 (バラ), Bara; Spanish for "Bullet", Japanese for "Hollow Bullet"): A technique that fires hardened spiritual pressure. Less powerful than a Cero, but can be successively fired at 20 times the rate.[20]
  • Cero (虚閃 (セロ), Sero; Spanish for "Zero", Japanese for "Hollow Flash"; "Doom Blast" in the Viz translation): A powerful spiritual light fired by Menos Grande and Arrancar.[20]
  • Descorrer (解空 (デスコレール), Desukorēru; Japanese for "Loosed Void", Spanish for "Drawing Back/Opening"):[21] A technique used by Espada-level Arrancar, and sometimes others, to open a Garganta between the living world and Hueco Mundo.[22]
  • Hierro (鋼皮 (イエロ), Iero; Spanish for "Iron", Japanese for "Steel Skin"): An Arrancar's outer skin with high spiritual hardness that serves as armor.[23]
  • High-Speed Regeneration (超速再生, Chōsoku Saisei; lit. "Ultra-Fast Regeneration") is an ability which allows Arrancar to heal most injuries very quickly, with the exception of the destruction of the head or vital organs. Ulquiorra states most Arrancar gave up this ability for far greater strength.[24]
  • Pesquisa (探査神経 (ペスキス), Pesukisa; Spanish for "Inquiry", Japanese for "Investigative Nerves"): An Arrancar's ability to measure and locate Reiatsu.[25]
  • Resurrección (帰刃 (レスレクシオン), Resurekushion; Spanish for "Resurrection", Japanese for "Returning Blade"): Releasing the core of an Arrancar's ability sealed in their Zanpakutō to regain the original powers of their Hollow form. They often take on a form closer to a Hollow than a Human after performing Resurrección.[26]
  • Sonído (響転 (ソニード), Sonīdo; Spanish for "Sound", Japanese for "Sound Ceremony"): The Arrancar equivalent to a Shinigami's Shunpo.[26]

Espada Equipment[]

  • Caja Negación (反膜の匪 (カハ・ネガシオン), kaha negashion; Spanish for "Negation Box", Japanese for "Anti-Membrane of Negation") A tool used by Espada to punish their subordinates. It traps its subject eternally in a closed dimension.[27]


  • In the English version, they do not refer to their ranks in Spanish numbers, but rather English numbers.

  • According to Q&A #535 by Tite Kubo on his fansite "Klub Outside", when a Hollow becomes an Arrancar, the part of their mask that breaks off becomes their Zanpakutō.[28]
  • According to Q&A #608 by Tite Kubo on his fansite "Klub Outside", as opposed to those of Shinigami, an Arrancar's sealed Zanpakutō can change its shape if the owner (and thus their Reiatsu) grows stronger and/or changes in any way. This was shown with Nnoitra Gilga's Zanpakutō changing shape between his position as Espada 8 and Espada 5.[28]
  • According to Q&A #646 by Tite Kubo on his fansite "Klub Outside", an Arrancar's mask is not stuck directly to the skin, but rather "hovers" above it slightly. Thus Arrancar should still be able to wash and groom themselves without the mask getting in the way.[28]

  • References[]

    1. Bleach manga; Chapter 187, page 14
    2. Bleach: Official Character Book 3 UNMASKED, pages 58-63
    3. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED, page 130
    4. Bleach manga; Chapter 197, page 14
    5. Bleach manga; Chapter 188, pages 11-13
    6. Bleach manga; Chapter 209, pages 3-4
    7. Bleach manga; Chapter 242, page 9
    8. Bleach manga; Chapter 242, page 13
    9. Bleach manga; Chapter 259, page 4
    10. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED, page 247
    11. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED, page 131
    12. Bleach manga; Chapter 204, pages 10-11
    13. Bleach manga; Chapter 204, page 15
    14. Bleach manga; Chapter 267, page 14
    15. Bleach manga; Chapter 485, page 2
    16. Bleach manga; Chapter 347, page 10
    17. Bleach manga; Chapter 280, page 6
    18. Bleach manga; Chapter 302, page 10
    19. Bleach manga; Chapter 482, page 7
    20. 20.0 20.1 Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED, page 246
    21. Bleach Official Character Book UNMASKED; page 149
    22. Bleach manga; Chapter 315, pages 10-14
    23. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED; page 248
    24. Bleach manga; Chapter 351, page 5
    25. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED; page 250
    26. 26.0 26.1 Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED, page 251
    27. Bleach Official Character Book 2 MASKED; page 246
    28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 Klub Outside official site

    See also[]