"In a battle, the ones who get in the way are not the ones that lack power, but the ones that lack resolve."
|Height||144 cm (4'8½")|
|Weight||33 kg (73 lbs.)|
|Affiliation||Gotei 13, Soul Society|
|Position||Captain of the 13th Division|
|Previous Position||Lieutenant of the 13th Division|
|Previous Partner||Jūshirō Ukitake|
|Base of Operations||Seireitei, Soul Society|
|Relatives||Renji Abarai (Husband) |
Ichika Abarai (Daughter)
Hisana Kuchiki (Sister, deceased)
Byakuya Kuchiki (Adoptive Brother/Brother-in-law)
Ginrei Kuchiki (Adoptive Grandfather)
|Shikai||Sode no Shirayuki|
|Bankai||Hakka no Togame|
|Manga||Volume 1, Chapter 1|
|Video Game||Bleach: Heat the Soul|
|Spanish||Belén Roca (Spain)|
Liliana Barba (Latin America)
Rukia Kuchiki (朽木 ルキア, Kuchiki Rukia) is the current captain of the 13th Division. She formerly served as lieutenant of the 13th Division under Captain Jūshirō Ukitake. Rukia is the adoptive sister of Byakuya Kuchiki and a friend of Ichigo Kurosaki.
Short and petite, Rukia has light skin and purple eyes. Her hair is black, with several strands of hair always hanging between her eyes. Byakuya has stated she strongly resembles her sister, Hisana Kuchiki. As a Shinigami of the Gotei 13, Rukia wears a standard shihakushō. 17 months after Aizen's defeat, Rukia wears her hair cropped into a bob which hangs about her face. She wears a fingerless white tekkō, similar to Byakuya's, which extend above her elbows. As a lieutenant, she wears her Division Badge around her uniform's left sleeve, which has been shortened to just reach her upper arm.
Ten years after Yhwach's defeat, Rukia's hair is in a style similar to the time before Aizen's defeat, but much longer. She also now wears a typical captain haori over her usual Shinigami shihakushō.
Initially born into a lower class, Rukia retains her modesty, even as an adopted member of the nobility. She is graceful and "clean", yet chooses to talk to ordinary people. However, her cool and lone demeanor often forces her to hide her personal troubles, even from her friends. According to Ukitake, Rukia never opens up her heart, and has difficulty making friends. Rukia is clueless about the ways of the modern Human World. She is very good at acting, having acted her way through a number of tough situations, such as getting out of trouble with school teachers and convincing the Kurosaki family to let her stay at their house.
Rukia always has trouble finding clothes that fit her, especially when inhabiting a Gigai in the Human World, leading to her stealing clothes from Ichigo's sister, Yuzu. She likes to climb to high places. Rukia likes everything rabbit-themed, and becomes quite sensitive when someone insults her obsession with them. People often have difficulty understanding her drawings, which are typically rabbit-like, and doesn't like it when people complain about their quality. Rukia's favorite foods are cucumber, eggs, and rice dumplings.
Agent of the Shinigami arc
Soul Society arc
Hueco Mundo arc
Fake Karakura Town arc
Rukia comes to Ichigo's aid at the five towers at the center of Las Noches. Freezing Rudbornn Chelute's arm as he tries to attack Ichigo, she tells him to hurry and rescue Orihime. Rukia, defeating Rudbornn's underlings fairly easily, battles Rudbornn. At this time, Rukia notices the battle between Ichigo and Ulquiorra Cifer above her. Eventually, Rukia overpowers him by freezing his "branches". Rudbornn is knocked out of the way by Yammy Llargo, who bursts through a nearby wall. Yammy confronts Rukia, Sado, and Renji. When a Cero comes through the roof of Las Noches, Rukia notices Ichigo's Reiatsu.
As Rukia wonders if Ichigo defeated Ulquiorra, an enraged Yammy, cursing the fact that they are all he has to fight, increases in size, causing his jacket to tear and revealing his Espada tattoo. Renji tells Rukia and Sado that together they can defeat Yammy, as he is only the 10th Espada. However, Yammy releases his Zanpakutō. As he towers over them, Yammy reveals he is the 0 Espada, much to the trio's shock.
After Renji and Sado are defeated, Rukia is caught by Yammy, but Ichigo, intervening, prevents the Espada from finishing her. She asks where Orihime is, and is told she is tending to Uryū's wounds. Ichigo, moving her to safety, begins to battle Yammy. She watches Ichigo as he fights, wondering what happened to Ichigo above the dome. Rukia notes his eyes do not look like those of someone victorious in battle or about to cut down his enemy.
After seeing Ichigo's attack on Yammy, she realizes his Hollow mask has changed from its previous form. Some time after Urahara seals Aizen, Rukia, along with Uryū, Sado, Orihime, and Renji, arrives in Karakura Town. Her arm is in a sling as they greet Ichigo. When he suddenly collapses, Rukia, along with the rest of the group, runs towards Ichigo as he screams in pain.
A month later, Rukia and Ichigo's other friends are present in his bedroom when he wakes up. Rukia tells Ichigo how long he had been unconscious for, and that Urahara revealed he has lost his Shinigami powers. Rukia further explains the stages of losing his powers, with the first stage bringing intense pain, unconsciousness, and a reversal of the time Ichigo's body spent in the Dangai. With his Shinigami powers gone, the second stage sees his Reiatsu stabilizing and him awakening before his remaining spiritual power completely disappears. At Ichigo's request, the group goes outside. As it becomes harder for Ichigo to see her, Rukia knows this is farewell. Mocking Ichigo's sad face, she states she will still be able to see him, much to his displeasure. Disappearing from Ichigo's sight completely, Rukia leaves through a Senkaimon as Ichigo, bidding farewell, thanks her.
The Lost Substitute Shinigami arc
The Thousand-Year Blood War arc
- Ōken Clothing: After training with the Royal Guard, Rukia dons special clothing in order to safely return to the Seireitei. These clothes are made from the bones and hair of the members of the Royal Guard, and they possess incredible defensive power, allowing Rukia to withstand the friction that results from breaking through the 72 barriers between Soul Society and the Soul King Palace without suffering any damage; Yhwach notes that no Shinigami could hope to wear greater garb. These clothes take the form of a long white shawl wrapped around her head and hang past her shoulders, fluffy white earmuffs, a white visor covering her eyes, and a long white cloak worn over her shihakushō. They are destroyed when Rukia activates her Bankai and temporarily gains new clothing.
Powers & Abilities
Kidō Expert: Rukia's greatest strength is her knowledge of Kidō. Among her known skills are those for binding, healing, and destruction. However, as she herself stated, while her Kidō skill at the Shin'ō Academy was the highest of her class, the sheer power of her Kidō was just average when she joined the 13th Division. Through continuous training, she has greatly developed this skill, able to use Hadō #73 without incantation to considerable effect. She switched from Zanjutsu to Kidō without delay upon losing her Zanpakutō. She can use high-level Kidō in rapid succession without incantations and still retain considerable control and power. She has great skill in using various spells in unique combination, even using multiple spells at the same time. However, she requires incantations when using high-level spells simultaneously.
Expert Swordsman: Rukia knows the basic levels of Zanjutsu, of which she seemed to have only mastered the rudimentary skills. By her own admission, she has less talent in swordsmanship than Kidō. However, after much training by her former mentor, Kaien Shiba, her skill drastically improved. She can hold her own in a battle, most notably defending herself from attacks from the 9th Espada, who possessed the expert swordsmanship skill of Kaien Shiba.
Shunpo Expert: Renji says Rukia is helpful and effective because of her high speed. During her battle against the Adjuchas of the Menos Forest, she skillfully dodged multiple attacks from several enemies. She is able to move fast enough to surprise and cut Äs Nödt.
Hakuda Combatant: While in a Gigai, she fought enemies with her hands and feet (kicking, punching, etc.). She is capable of hand-to-hand combat while in her Shinigami state, possessing augmented strength. During the Bount Invasion, she countered the swift and accurate attacks of Yoshi.
Keen Intellect: Rukia has repeatedly demonstrated her keen intellect. She compensated against the power of the 9th Espada with combination attacks. During her forced stay in the Human World after losing her powers, Rukia proved herself very useful in assisting Ichigo with his new Shinigami duties. Rukia is very knowledgeable, with a detailed knowledge of Soul Society's history.
Enhanced Strength: Despite her size, she is powerful enough to defeat a superior opponent. Even without the aid of her Zanpakutō, she is still a considerable opponent. Despite her size, she can lift and throw a Human.
Sode no Shirayuki (袖白雪, Sleeved White Snow; Viz "Sleeves of White Snow"): In its sealed form, Sode no Shirayuki is a normal katana. It has a rectangular tsuba with a vaguely flame-like pattern on the long sides and a curved line on the short sides, inward-curved corners with curved slits above and below the blade, and a series of curved lines embossed on either side of the blade. It has a reddish-brown hilt.
- Shikai: Its Shikai command is "Dance" (舞え, mae). Rukia holds her Zanpakutō out in front of her and turns it in a circle counter-clockwise. While she is turning it, the blade, hilt, and tsuba turn completely white. The tsuba becomes a hollow snowflake-like circle, and a white ribbon forms from the pommel. Sode no Shirayuki is regarded as one of the most beautiful Zanpakutō in Soul Society. The transformation is accompanied by a rush of cold air in all directions.
- Shikai Special Ability: Sode no Shirayuki is an ice-type Zanpakutō. Sode no Shirayuki possesses multiple techniques, labeled as "dances" by Rukia. Besides ice techniques, Sode no Shirayuki's general ability is freezing. Sode no Shirayuki can freeze a target from a distance, or used in a different manner, create a path or platform of ice in midair. Rukia can freeze even the Reishi-created Spirit Weapon of a Quincy, causing it to shatter. In reality, Sode no Shirayuki does not spread coldness from its blade; its actual ability is to bring the body temperature of its wielder to a temperature below freezing. As a result, anything its wielder touches freezes, the sword itself merely increasing their reach. Due to this power, Rukia is capable of momentarily "killing" her body by controlling her own Reishi, putting herself in a form of cryostasis. She completely stops all the molecules in her body, preventing any material or substance attempting to affect her from doing so because it cannot enter her body. However, if someone uses an optical attack on her, it will affect her because her nerves are still working. Rukia can lower her body temperature to a point at which the ground below her feet freezes instantly, causing ice quakes, and can even reduce her temperature to absolute zero, though she can only safely maintain this temperature for no more than four seconds.
- Some no mai, Tsukishiro (初の舞・月白, First Dance, White Moon): Rukia calls out the name of the dance while holding her Zanpakutō upside down. The blade glows, and she makes a slashing motion when her target is in position. When she does this, she draws a circle with the tip of Sode no Shirayuki. The space within that circle and anything inside freezes. The circle not only freezes the ground, but everything within the circle's influence, including anything above it in the air, creating an extending pillar of light which freezes all within the circle. Shortly after being frozen, the victim shatters along with the ice. The ice pillar will not shatter if the victim is not caught within it.
- Tsugi no mai, Hakuren (次の舞・白漣, Next Dance, White Ripple): Rukia, calling out the name of the dance, punctures the ground once, creating a large ice circle, similar to the first dance. She punctures the ground in front of her four times in a semi circle. As ice particles begin to flow up from the punctures she made in the ground, she takes a battle stance. The particles, building up at the tip of Sode no Shirayuki, are released as a large, powerful avalanche of cold air. It flash freezes whatever it comes into contact with, encasing it in ice.
- San no mai, Shirafune (参の舞・白刀, Third Dance, White Sword): Rukia calls out the name of the dance, which allows her to gather moisture in the air to the tip of Sode no Shirayuki, creating a blade of ice. This makes it possible to augment the length of the blade. After piercing its target, it continues to freeze any surrounding objects and the immediate area.
- Bankai: Hakka no Togame (白霞罸, Censure of the White Haze; Viz "White Haze Punishment"): Rukia's Bankai changes both her physical look and the clothing she is wearing dramatically. Rukia wears a white, ankle-length kimono with lined patterns. The robe has an attached ornate collar, edges, and shoulder design with long, wide sleeves. There are long, flowing ribbons tied at her back that form numerous large loops. She has a small ice flower formation at the center of her chest, and a half crown of ice which extends around the back of her head. Rukia's hair becomes white, and her blade becomes ice.
- Bankai Special Ability: Hakka no Togame increases the area of influence of Rukia's ability to reach the temperature of absolute zero. Upon release, a pillar of cold mist rises up into the air from where Rukia is and covers a wide area in her vicinity. Anything within the area of influence of the mist is frozen. Once frozen solid, victims crumble away within seconds. Physical contact with Rukia herself causes other people to begin freezing solid due to how cold her body is.
Mastery Difficulty (Bankai): While Rukia possesses a powerful Bankai, it is also a difficult one, as the slightest mistake could kill Rukia.
Time Limit (Bankai): Because Rukia is physically affected along with everything else in her vicinity, the amount of time she can use her Bankai appears severely limited, as prolonged use can potentially cause her damage, so she must thaw slowly when leaving this state, otherwise she would risk damaging herself.
Appearances in Other Media
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- Rukia features on an edition of the Second Session of Bleach Beat Collection, where Fumiko Orikasa performs two of the three tracks as Rukia: "Kaze (Wind)" and "Holy Fight," the latter of which is a duet with Orihime.
- Rukia also features on the Forth Sessions's opening volume, performing "Ten no Hoshi" and "Listen to ONE story," the latter of which is a duet with Byakuya. She also appears in the fourth volume, singing "Echo" and "Glow," which is a duet with Ichigo.
- In addition Rukia features on Bleach Breathless Collection Volume 2, performing "MOON" and taking part in a talk session.
- Rukia features in the first volume of Bleach "B" Station, performing the track "～Famed (Crazed) Music Show～ " and also appearing in track six, "We Chanced to Meet in Trash Heap-lookin' Town." Rukia is in the first volume of the second season of "B" Station, featuring on track one and again on the second track of the first and fourth volumes of season three. In season four, Rukia is on track three of volume two and the fifth season's first volume, track four.
- BuriCon - Bleach Concept Covers features Rukia performing "Shōjo S" with Orihime Inoue. She performs "ChAngE " as a solo.
- Rukia appears in all editions of Rock Musical Bleach, where she is played by Miki Satō.
- Rukia appears in most Bleach video games. In Soul Carnival and Soul Carnival 2, she has a technique called Tsurarada (氷柱堕, Icicle Fall), where she creates up to three icicles while in the air and lets them drop down on an opponent on the ground.
- In Brave Souls, Rukia's Bankai appears for the first time outside of the manga in the Thousand Year Blood War Arc summons. Her special is "Bankai! Hakka no Togame!", where she deals immense damage to all enemies as well as inflicting Freeze.
- Rukia is also playable as her Quincy Blood War self in the action-adventure crossover video game Jump Force, where she is able to use her Bankai.
- She and Ichigo are released for a limited time in the mobile turn-based RPG Onmyōji as collectible shikigami units.
- Rukia appears in all four animated movie adaptations of Bleach.
- Rukia appears in live action film adaptation of Bleach, where she is portrayed by actress Hana Sugisaki.
Main article: Dark Rukia
Dark Rukia is an alternate form of Rukia which appeared exclusively in Bleach: Fade to Black. While in this form, instead of her own Zanpakutō, she has a gigantic, double-edged scythe, which she easily wields with one hand. Her outfit appears to be completely different, and she is barefooted. Her deep black hair is now lavender, as well as her eyes. While in this alternate state, her powers have been augmented, and she appears to fight differently, as opposed to her normal self.
- Rukia wasn't wounded and bleeding as much in the anime, as she was in the manga when she was attacked by Fishbone D.
- When Rukia transferred her Shinigami powers to Ichigo, the latter was shown being impaled by her Zanpakutō, the tip of which was then covered in his blood. In the anime however, Ichigo wasn't shown being impaled and the rest of the aforementioned factors weren't shown either.
- In the anime, Rukia's arm and forehead weren't bleeding as profusely from the Shrieker's exploding leeches compared to the manga.
- In the anime, after Grimmjow Jaegerjaquez's impaled Rukia, his arm wasn't covered in blood during and after he impaled her, compared to the manga.
- Wanting to draw a Shinigami in kimono, Tite Kubo drew Rukia - making her the first of the Bleach characters to be conceived.
- According to Tite Kubo, Rukia's theme song is Wing Stock by Ashley MacIsaac.
- Rukia is consistently the most popular female character in the series. In the fourth character popularity poll, she was ranked as the 2nd most popular character in Bleach; in the seventh, she was ranked as the most popular character overall.
- Sode no Shirayuki, Rukia's Zanpakutō, was ranked the 2nd most popular Zanpakutō in the first Zanpakutō poll; in the second, it was ranked the most popular Zanpakutō.
- In the first best bout poll, Rukia's fight with Aaroniero ranked 7th; in the second, it ranked 2nd, while her fight with Äs Nödt ranked 3rd, her fight with Di Roy Rinker ranked 47th, her fight with a Metastacia-possessed Kaien Shiba ranked 68th, and her fight with Shrieker ranked 83rd.
- The soul-removing glove Rukia uses early in the series is colored light blue, gold, orange, and white in the manga, while being colored red, black, dark blue, and white in the anime adaptation.
- In the manga, after Ichigo's battle with Grand Fisher, Rukia notes how a Shinigami's life force is measured by their Reiryoku, and comments on Ichigo's potential. In the anime, Eikichirō Saidō states it instead.
- Rukia's report on Ichigo, titled the Substitute Shinigami Work Diary, along with her illustrations, are slated for publication in the Seireitei Communication.
- Rukia was mistakenly shown as holding Senbonzakura in chapter 302.
- When Rukia is having a rematch with Yoshi she mistakenly used Hadō 33 Byakurai instead of Sokatsui (shown in episode 93 English dub).
- (To Ichigo Kurosaki) "Even if you save that kid here, nothing will matter if you don't become a Shinigami! Saving him because he's right in front of you!? Don't be naive. A Shinigami has to treat all spirits equally! You cannot just conveniently save those you can see, those you can reach. Don't save that kid with such half-heartedness. If you want to save him now... accept that you must save all spirits. To go anywhere for them... to even give your life to save them, make that kind of commitment!"
- (To Ichigo Kurosaki) "...If I ask, will you answer? ...It's your problem. A deep, deep problem. I have no right to know. I don't have a method of stepping into the depths of your heart without getting it dirty. So I'll wait. When you want to talk, when you think it's okay to talk... Talk to me. Until that time, I'll wait."
- (Thinking about Ichigo Kurosaki) "Whether I like him, whether I hate him, it's just all so troublesome. Love, companionship and friendship... it's nothing but trouble."
- "When the time comes when I have to leave, I have to cut myself off from them all. Love, companionship and friendship. It's troublesome. It's really, really nothing but a saddening emotion. All Shinigami shouldn't have these unnecessary feelings. What kind of disgraceful behavior is this... Rukia Kuchiki?"
- (To Renji Abarai about Ichigo) "I...I was the one who dragged him into this!! It's my fault he died!! Since it's my fault he died...! Is it so wrong to go to him?"
- (To Ichigo Kurosaki) "Don't even try to move one step from there. If you try to follow me... I'll never forgive you!"
- "We must not shed tears. That is the defeat of the body by the heart. Because, for us, this thing called 'the heart' can become nothing less than proof that one's existence is superfluous."
- "I'm not scared. I'm content with my life. Meeting Renji and the others, adopted by Nii-sama, Kaien-dono's guidance, then Ichigo's attempted rescue. No pain, no sadness, no regrets. There is nothing for my heart to linger in this world. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. And goodbye."
- (To Orihime Inoue) "In a battle, the ones who get in the way are not the ones that lack power, but the ones that lack resolve."
- (To Aaroniero Arruruerie while thinking he is Kaien Shiba) "I... I did take your life Kaien. I think that sin is something that will never vanish, no matter how many years pass. If killing me will lift your spirits even a little bit... then I will gladly offer you my life. However, I came to Hueco Mundo to save Inoue... my friend. Until I rescue Inoue Orihime I cannot offer you my life no matter what you may say...!"
- (Flashback) "At that time I was consumed by a single insecurity. From the start, I had little talent with a sword. My Kidō grades were good when I was in the Shin'ō Academy, but even that was average among the Gotei divisions. Was it really alright for me to be here? Where does my heart lie? Why am I here in the Gotei Divisions?"
- (To Aaroniero Arruruerie) "I remembered where the heart lies. What's inside you is indeed Kaien's spirit body, but... Kaien is not there... Kaien... left his heart with me!"
- "I know the loneliness of being a prisoner. I know the joy you feel when your friends come to rescue you and the fear of them being injured and defeated."
- (To Sode no Shirayuki) "I can never forgive anyone who attempts to destroy what I must protect."
- (To Riruka Dokugamine) "You are no Hollow or Arrancar. You are human. It is the duty of a Shinigami to protect humans such as yourself. I will not raise my blade against you."
|Captain of the 13th Division|
? - Present
| Succeeded by|