BURN THE WITCH (one-shot)
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Cover Noel Niihashi
Ninny Spangcole
Pages 198
Release Data
Print (J) December 9, 2018
ISBN (J) ISBN 978-4-08-792525-8
Chapter List
Shueisha BURN THE WITCH

This is a special pilot chapter of BURN THE WITCH, Tite Kubo's first manga series since the end of Bleach. It was released in the July 16th, 2018 edition of Shonen Jump.

Accompanying the release of Bleach JET, BURN THE WITCH was compiled in a special, limited-issue volume that was given to those who purchased the artwork collection at launch and contained the one-shot, several sketches of Noel Niihashi and Ninny Spangcole, and data about some of Ichigo Kurosaki's previously-unnamed classmates in addition to concept art of characters and scenes from many different media across the Bleach franchise.[1]


BURN THE WITCH

Summary:

The cover spread of BURN THE WITCH.

As Noel Niihashi walks down the streets of London in her school uniform while musing on how uniforms tell others who she is, she comes across Osushi sitting on the ground and prepares to give him a dog treat, only to be accosted by Balgo Parks, who wishes to see her panties as usual. Kicking Balgo away, Noel notes that he is now able to finish his sentences even after being kicked by her and throws a pipe at him, which he frantically dodges, before brushing off his claim that it could have hit someone by stating that if he could dodge it, even an elderly man could. Emboldened by her challenge of never being able to best her, Balgo tells her to not underestimate him, only to be swiftly incapacitated by a strike to the jaw. Noel enters a nearby phonebooth and deposits a coin emblazoned with the emblem of the Western Branch before saying that she is clocking into work to the receiver, causing the phonebooth to drop into the ground below, much to Balgo's bewilderment.

Reverse London, with the Wing Bind headquarters, protects and controls the dragons.

In Reverse London, standing beneath the partially destroyed gate of the Western Branch, Ninny Spangcole berates the repairmen for not fixing the gate in the week since it was damaged while her latest advertisement plays on a large monitor in the background. When she is told that the installation of the monitor was prioritized, Ninny claims this is just an excuse and, upon being interrupted by the arrival of Noel behind her, demands to know why Noel is late again, leading Noel to state she had to fight off Balgo at the entrance as usual, to Ninny's chagrin. It is revealed that the dragons of ancient fables are not fictitious, but not quite real either: centuries ago, 72% of all deaths in London were caused by dragons, which is why London's coat of arms features dragons on it. The residents of London cannot see dragons, but needed to be protected from them nonetheless; therefore, the residents of Reverse London, hidden under "Front London", took it upon themselves to protect and control the dragons.

Noel and Ninny depart for Ninebrook Pastures.

As she and Ninny enter the Wing Bind headquarters, Noel points out that Ninny is the one who told the repairmen to prioritize the installation of the monitor, prompting Ninny to defend her actions by claiming everyone wants to see her advertisements. When Ninny reminds her that she asked not to be called "Ninii-chan" because she is Noel's senpai, Noel tells her to call her by her first name, leading Ninny to say "Niiha-chan" is cuter and that Noel is a boy's name, which Noel counters by stating that it is a girl's name in Japan. Billy Banx Jr. walks up and notes that they seem to be having fun as usual before brushing off Ninny's ensuing insult of him being bald. After having them stamp their attendance sheets, Billy walks Noel and Ninny to their Broombuggy mounts before revealing they will be going to Ninebrook Pastures and claiming that it is a fun place. As Ninny grows increasingly frustrated with her boss's remarks, Noel states that they should get going, and the two of them take off on their mounts.

The various types of Dragons employed by the people of Reverse London for their utilities, such as textiles, electricity, and meat.

Elsewhere, in London, Balgo sits with his friend Shelby and tearfully states that he wanted to see Noel's panties, prompting Shelby to berate him for being sad about such a thing. When Balgo reminds him that he rejected the story of Noel disappearing into thin air, Shelby confirms this because he considers the idea of people going to Reverse London preposterous, as it is a "fairy tale" like Santa Claus. Foisting Osushi onto Shelby, who is overwhelmed by his cuteness, Balgo convinces his friend to listen to his woes. Meanwhile, in Ninebrook Pastures, Noel feeds her mount while Ninny complains about not being able to join the Sabre Squad and protect the streets of London, leading Noel to note that she is content where she is in the Conservation Rangers. Upon being approached by a farmhand, Noel introduces herself and Ninny, prompting the farmhand to request that they help him harvest a crop today. It is revealed that the people of Reverse London rely upon various types of domesticated dragons for their utilities, such as textiles, electricity, and even meat.

Osushi transforms into an enormous Dragon.

Noel and Ninny climb up the neck of an extremely large, camel-like Dragon as Ninny notes that she actually prefers this domestication of the Dragons to Japan's policy of simply killing them all, but she does not know why they need to be harvesting grapes from this Dragon. It is revealed that the only absolute rule regarding Dragons is that ordinary residents of London are forbidden from coming into direct contact with them - the only ones who have the authority to do so are the witches and wizards who have passed the exam to join the Wing Bind agency. This rule is meant to protect both citizens and Dragons, and violating it is punishable by 100 years imprisonment or something else. Back in London, Balgo brings Shelby to the phonebooth Noel disappeared in and wonders what the WB that appeared on the booth meant. As Shelby begins to leave, Osushi suddenly distorts and transforms into an enormous Dark Dragon.

Ninny opens the Coin Gate.

In Ninebrook Pastures, Noel receives a call from Billy, who asks her to finish up her harvest and perform an extermination for him. Though Noel decides to hang up on him, Ninny overhears and convinces Noel to go through with it. As they speed through the air on their mounts, Noel and Ninny learn that they were chosen because the Sabre Squad is currently doing field training in the north all day and the dragon in question is located in South Braxton, where Noel is from. Noting that they do not have time to go back to the phone gate, Ninny tells Noel to use her coin so they can open the Coin Gate. As she notes that Ninny seems very happy about this, which Ninny admits to being true because they might get promoted to the Saber Squad for defending London on their own, Noel tosses her the coin as Ninny opens the Coin Gate, which they go through.

Shelby attacks Ninny.

Meanwhile, as they hide from the rampaging Dark Dragon, Balgo and Shelby note that something is definitely in front of them even though they cannot see it. Suddenly, Noel and Ninny burst out of the Coin Gate behind the Dragon. As it is revealed that Dragons become Dark by coming into contact with people and absorbing their negative emotions, which also gives them the power of human speech, the Dark Dragon demands to see Noel's panties, causing her to immediately realize Balgo is nearby and promise to kill him. Upon noticing the limp Osushi, Ninny deduces that he is dead and the Dark Dragon is a Disguiser, which takes over corpses. When Shelby tries to flee the scene, Ninny pursues him despite Noel's warning that there are two Dragons present, only for Shelby to suddenly unfurl his body and attack Ninny.

Noel kills Shelby with Absolute Dragon Shatter.

With her left arm broken by the attack, Ninny rolls to safety as Shelby reveals himself to be a Disguiser Dragon as well. Noting that he does not want to kill Balgo, Shelby declares that he will devour the witches and become immortal as he attacks Ninny once more, only for Noel to swoop in and rescue her. As Noel reveals that Shelby died when he was 7 while protecting Balgo from the impact of a train, Ninny remarks on the strangeness of a Dark Dragon living among humans for 10 years before Shelby suddenly appears next to them and attacks, sending Ninny crashing into the city below. When the dust clears to reveal Ninny landed next to Balgo, Shelby tells him to leave so he can devour Ninny and attempts to do so, but Balgo blocks his mouth with his arms and reveals that he is doing so because he still believes Shelby is his friend. Shelby prepares to devour them both, but is kicked away by Noel, who admits that Balgo was cool for a moment there before destroying Shelby with Absolute Dragon Shatter, to Balgo's shock.

Noel and Ninny learn that Balgo is being left in their care due to becoming a Dragon-Possessed One.

Later, Noel and Ninny learn that Billy has been promoted to the Sabre Squad due to his decision to send them in to handle the Dark Dragon, while they have been given Balgo to take care of after he became a Dragon-Possessed One due to being bitten by a Dark Dragon after living with one for 10 years. While Ninny hounds Billy, Osushi, now a dog again, asks to see Noel's panties, causing her to chase after him and Balgo, destroying the now-rebuilt Western Branch gate once again in the process.

Characters in order of appearance:

Character Data

The compiled volume contains a registry for Ichigo Kurosaki's class at Karakura Town and features sketches of all the students, temporary or otherwise, including several who never appeared in the anime or manga, along with data and information points about each.

Name Height Weight Blood Type
01 Keigo Asano 173 cm 61 kg B0
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02 Shunya Asō 169 cm 58 kg B0
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03 Tatsuki Arisawa 155 cm 41 kg A0
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04 Uryū Ishida 171 cm 55 kg AB
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05 Orihime Inoue 157 cm 45 kg B
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06 Reiichi Ōshima 180 cm 74 kg 0
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07 Michiru Ogawa 153 cm 45 kg A0
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  • Michiru is considered to be a meeha, or a follower of new fads.
08 Victoria Hitomi Odagiri 173 cm 56 kg B0
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  • Victoria is a diligent student who placed 14th in the final exams.
  • She is Conrad's sister and does not like his shyness.
  • Her friends call her Vicky (ヴィッキー, Vikkī).
09 Conrad Tomohiro Odagiri 154 cm 46 kg 0
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  • Conrad is shy and timid, often avoiding eye contact, and likes polo shirts.
  • Victoria is his younger twin sister.
  • People calls him Connie (コニー, Konī).
10 Aiko Kugihashi 165 cm 54 kg AB
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  • Aiko loves tulip hats.
11 Rukia Kuchiki 144 cm 33 kg -
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12 Ryō Kunieda 166 cm 51 kg BB
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13 Ichigo Kurosaki 174 cm 61 kg A0
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14 Mizuiro Kojima 155 cm 45 kg B0
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  • Mizuiro is a feminist.
  • The theme song that Kubo chose for Mizuiro is "Heartbeat" by the band Tahiti 80 from their album Puzzle.
15 Shunsuke Kobayakawa 157 cm 46 kg B0
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16 Yasutora Sado 197 cm 112 kg A0
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17 Meguru Serizawa 147 cm 37 kg 0
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18 Makoto Senoo 172 cm 57 kg A0
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  • Makoto loves buffalo pouches and adjusts his glasses with four fingers.
  • Friends with Yūya.
  • Makoto's parents work at Karakura High School.
19 Keisuke Sorimachi 168 cm 61 kg A0
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  • Sorimachi has an older sister named Wakako Sorimachi (反町 和香子) who was 24 when he enrolled at Karakura High School.
20 Terunari Toda 182 cm 74 kg 0
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  • Toda is a soccer player.
  • His friends call him Teru (テル, Teru).
21 Mikako Tomoshige 154 cm 47 kg A0
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22 Mahana Natsui 169 cm 59 kg AB
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  • Mahana likes playing volleyball.
23 Yūya Nitō 168 cm 103 kg AB
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  • Yūya is a narcissist.
24 Yūnosuke Nega 165 cm 55 kg BB
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  • Nega is a skinhead.
25 Sayaka Nogi 160 cm 51 kg 0
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  • Sayaka loves bell-bottoms.
26 Nana Baba 158 cm 46 kg BB
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27 Takie Higashi 151 cm 45 kg A0
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  • Never appeared in the manga.
28 Rinko Himejima 159 cm 45 kg AB
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  • Rinko is afraid of frogs.
  • She never appears in the manga or anime.
29 Shinji Hirako 176 cm 58 kg AB
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30 Chizuru Honshō 163 cm 48 kg B0
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31 Fuminobu Miyagawa 116 cm 59 kg 0
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  • Fuminobu likes wearing Polo Ralph Lauren clothes.
32 Jun Miyamoto 187 cm 80 kg AA
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  • Jun plays basketball.
33 Tetsuo Momohara 169 cm 56 kg 0
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34 Miho Yokomori 156 cm 70 kg 0
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  • Miho never appeared in the manga or anime.
35 Kanan Yoshizawa 158 cm 44 kg 0
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  • Kanan never appeared in the manga or anime.
36 Kaori Wakutsu 155 cm 44 kg AA
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Author's Notes

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Having had a pet dog and being a mangaka, I challenged myself to put my dog in a manga.
Still, my desire to draw dogs hasn't disappeared, so I might draw them in some form again.
-Tite Kubo

Trivia

"BLEACH" spelled out in the title of BURN THE WITCH.

  • The last panel of this one-shot is emblazoned with the name BURN THE WITCH, but has select portions of the words (all of the letters B, E, C, and H, as well as the upper-right portion of the letter T and the middle of the letter W) shaded in, spelling out "BLEACH".[2]
  • The title of this one-shot is a reference to the song "Burn the Witch" by the band Radiohead.[3]


References

  1. http://www.j-bleach.com/special/
  2. BURN THE WITCH one-shot, page 61
  3. Bleach JET; interview with Tite Kubo

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