The Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 release date is confirmed for July 2023, the Summer 2023 anime season.
The anime sequel is officially titled Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Part 2: The Separation in English, although some Japanese sources still refer to the continuation as “the next season”.
Prior to the official announcement, Anime Geek had been predicting that the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 release date would be Spring or Summer 2023 depending on how the production schedule is planned out. Since Bleach: TYBW Season 2 is officially coming out in July 2023, that means we can predict when Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 3 comes out. (Please see the predictions section below for more details.)
When the 2nd season was announced on December 26, 2022, the official Tite Kubo Twitter noted that like the first season, “there may be battles and scenes added in the anime” that were originally not part of the manga.
It’s been officially confirmed that Bleach: Thousand Blood War Blu-Ray Volume 1 includes 13 episodes and will come out on April 26, 2023. That means Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Episode 14 will continue the story in Bleach Season 18 (Bleach: TYBW Part 2).
On December 26, 2022, VIZ Media also revealed on Twitter that the proper English title for the next set of episodes will be Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War Part 2: The Separation.
Oddly enough, the Japanese version of the trailer refers to “The Next Season” in English, whereas the VIZ Media version of the trailer with English subtitles changes the video to say, “The Next Part”
It should also be noted that official sources are referring to the continuation as the “2nd cour” in Japanese, not the 2nd season.
What’s a “cour,” you might ask? For those unfamiliar with the lingo, a “cour” is a three-month block of TV broadcasting based on the physical seasons usually composed of 10 to 13 episodes.
A “split-cour” is where a single anime season takes a multi-month break before resuming TV broadcasting.
On September 30, 2022, it was reported that the STAR sub-section of Disney+ Canada was listing “Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War: Season 1”, which meant that Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 (Bleach Sennen Kessen-hen Season 2) was known about in advance.
It’s also been officially confirmed by Oricon News that the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War anime TV series will have 4 cours in total. But it’s a split cour broadcasting schedule where there will be seasonal breaks between the 4 parts.
READ: What the Bleach Disney+ streaming deal means for uncensored blood, weekly episode simulcast release schedule
Studio Pierrot produced the original 16 seasons. Since they’re well-known for producing long-running anime series like Naruto and the Black Clover anime (see our article on the Black Clover Season 5 anime), it’s not surprising that the studio is returning to produce Bleach TYBW.
Bleach character designer Masashi Kudo and music composer Shiro Sagisuo both returned for creating Bleach TYBW.
However, the biggest change to the main staff was that director Tomohisa Taguchi (Akudama Drive, Kino’s Journey) replaced the previous director, Noriyuki Abe. The new director is also handling the series composition writing for Bleach Season 18.
While the main staff making Bleach TYBW Part 2 has not been announced yet, it is confirmed that Action Animation Director Yoshihiro Kanno won’t be returning since he’s moving on to another project. Episode Animation Director Cindy Yamauchi also isn’t returning.
The Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 OP (opening) and ED (ending) theme song music hasn’t been announced yet. The first season featured the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War OP song “Scar” as performed by Tatsuya Kitani.
The first cour’s final episode, Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Episode 13, was released on December 26, 2022. The finale was a 1-hour-long special that includes Bleach: TYBW Episodes 12 and 13.
The official website did announce some slight changes to the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Episode 11 release date. However, these changes are only affecting Japanese TV broadcasting since VIZ Media has confirmed the streaming dates for the final 3 episodes on Disney+/Hulu.
- Updated December 26, 2022: Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War Part 2 release date confirmed for July 2023.
- Updated December 12, 2022: Bleach: TYBW Season 1 finale to be a one-hour-long special.
- Updated November 14, 2022: Bleach: TYBW Blu-Ray/DVD page confirms the number of episodes.
This article provides everything that is known about Bleach Season 18 (Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War Season 2 / Bleach TYBW Season 2) and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news, rumors, and analysis. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.
Bleach Season 18 release date predictions: Release schedule depends on the number of split cours
As of the last update, Studio Pierrot, producer Aniplex, publisher Shueisha, licensor VIZ Media, or any company related to the production of the anime has not officially confirmed the exact Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 release date. However, it’s been confirmed that the Bleach: TYBW Season 2 release date will be in July 2023.
As previously noted, BLEACH: Thousand-Year Blood War Part 2: The Separation is the official title. That should mean future continuations will be numbered separately.
Once the news is officially confirmed this article will be updated with the relevant information.
No new official info was announced when Tite Kubo himself attended the Bleach Super Stage EX event at Jump Festa 2023, which took place on December 17, 2022. Jump Festa 2023 was live-streamed on the official Jump YouTube channel alongside simultaneous English subtitles.
However, the Bleach: TYBW Episode 13 release date was on December 26, 2023, so it would have been unusual for the Bleach: TYBW Season 2 announcement to be made before the seasonal finale is released. (The same could be said for Chainsaw Man Season 2 being announced at Jump Festa 2023.)
In this case, now that we know that Bleach Episode 14 is coming out in July 2023, it’s possible that there will be multiple split cours where there is a broadcasting break between each cour. Assuming the broadcasting breaks of 6 months are regular between each cour for Bleach Season 19, that means the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 3 release date will be in April 2024, the Spring 2024 anime season.
Then the final episode of Bleach Season 20 will be released in March 2025 assuming the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 4 release date is in January 2025, the Winter 2025 anime season.
It’s also possible that the final two cours of 13 episodes each will be broadcast closer together. In that scenario, Bleach: TYBW Part 3 could be in Fall 2023, and Bleach: TYBW Part 4 in Spring 2024.
But that idea is probably overly optimistic. It’s almost as if the production schedule is purposefully being planned out for Tite Kubo to release enough chapters for making a Bleach Hell Arc anime sequel in the future, but there is another good reason for the broadcasting breaks.
Why does Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War Part 2 have a split-cour production schedule?
It wasn’t that long ago when a split-cour animation production schedule was considered to be fairly rare in the anime industry. But as studios became booked up and anime reached peak popularity during the COVID pandemic it became increasingly necessary for producers to plan out breaks in-between cours.
Does anyone recall the odd Bleach animation quality problems that the series had back in the day? Certainly, the continuous run of Bleach Season 1 through 16 had plenty of great moments, but even then the quality of the animation didn’t stand up next to Tite Kubo’s original artwork.
And then there were oddball moments where characters’ hands were swapped or when their faces were just plain goofy-looking in comparison to the manga.
Thankfully, the Bleach 2022 anime came back with a new shiny coat of paint that’s largely thanks to the bombastic style of new series director Tomohisa Taguchi. But as kVin of Sakugo Blog notes the director “is indeed very busy” since “he’s been handling multiple projects essentially all the time as of late, which sometimes does reduce the attention he can spare to them.”
kVin doesn’t think this is “problematic” since Taguchi leaves “behind a clear blueprint to follow even when he’s not around to directly supervise the production process. If you like what you see, you shouldn’t worry too much about the show losing this new identity.” Still, kVin thinks “it remains to be seen whether the director’s eye-catching style will continue working its magic to the end, or whether it’ll make the technical cracks worse to the point of becoming too noticeable for most viewers.”
As such, the split-cour production schedule was likely necessary in order to maintain consistent production quality over the course of the project. Creating movie-like animation quality and shading takes time so anime fans will just have to be patient.
How many episodes will Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War have in total?
The anime TV series is based on the Bleach manga series by artist and writer Tite Kubo. Published in Weekly Shonen Jump from 2001 through 2016, the Bleach manga ended in Bleach Volume 74: Chapter 686.
The official English translation of the Bleach manga was released by North American publisher VIZ Media. The English Bleach Volume 74 came out back in October 2018.
The original anime, which had 366 episodes, followed the manga’s story up until Episode 64 when multiple anime original story arcs were introduced in order to give Kubo more time to create new manga chapters. These filler episodes continued until Episode 110, but then the anime continued to rely on filler multiple times over the years.
Episodes 128 through 137, Episodes 168 through 189, Episodes 230 through 265, and Episodes 311 through 342 were all filler. Needless to say, this amount of filler content is unusual for an anime series so reading the Bleach manga is like a different experience.
The Bleach Season 16 anime finished by adapting the Lost Substitute Shinigami arc, which was covered by manga chapters 424 through 479.
Bleach Season 17 anime picked up the story again with the Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War arc (also known as the Quincy arc), which includes chapters 480 through 686. Presumably, the anime will not include any major filler episodes this time around, although certain episodes did add anime original scenes.
The fact that the Bleach TYBW anime will only be four cours was actually a surprise to many manga readers. After all, we’re talking about adapting a story arc that’s 206 chapters in 20 tankoubon-format volumes, which is almost a third of the entire manga.
The adaptation pacing of the last three non-filler anime seasons (Bleach Season 12, 14, and 16) averaged around two manga chapters adapted per episode. If the Bleach TYBW pacing had maintained that average then it would have been over 100 episodes, or 9 cours in total.
Instead, the rumored Bleach: Thousand Year Blood Year episode count is less than half that expectation! On September 10, 2022, anime news leaker oecuf.xyz claimed that there will be only 52 episodes.
It seems like that leak is accurate based on the pacing of the first season. Each cour needs to adapt about five volumes and Bleach: TYBW Episode 1 adapted the first half of Volume 55. By Bleach: TYBW Episode 6: The Fire, the anime had adapted the second half of Volume 57.
Bleach Sennen Kessen-hen Season 2 anime spoilers (plot summary/summary
Note: All in all, the first season found a stopping point in Bleach Volume 59. As such, these spoilers will be updated over time but they are currently based on Volume 60.
After the defeat of the Soul Reapers by the mysterious group of warriors calling themselves the Vandenreich, Ichigo heads to the royal palace to heal his wounds. With that accomplished, it’s time to get stronger! But does Ichigo have what it takes to survive some super-intense training?!
As the rain falls in Karakura Town, Isshin faces off against a mysterious Black Hollow. But when a familiar face joins the fight, Isshin will need all the help he can get.
Ichigo’s dark past is revealed and he finally learns the truth about his mother and his own connection to the Quincies. Ichigo now faces off against his true Zanpakuto, but can he recover from the shock of finally learning the truth?!
Unfortunately, anime fans will have to wait until the Bleach: Thousand Year Blood War Season 2 release date to watch what happens next. Stay tuned!