Best Bleach Anime Openings: Every Intro, Ranked

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Being a Bleach fan was hard when I was younger (sometimes).

It felt like with every step forwards, we took steps back – yet there’s one thing, without a doubt, that gave Bleach an edge above its contemporaries.

What Naruto and One Piece lacked was a realistic urban setting, and relatable tangible characters. The people behind Bleach understood this, and so they embedded within the adaptation an unforgettably incredible score as well as 15 unique opening songs and animations reflective of the sixteen arcs of the show.

I’m gonna take those fifteen intro openings and rank ‘em one by one – so let’s do this!


15. Opening #08: Chu-Bura by Kelun

Opening #08: Chu-Bura by Kelun anime intro scene

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The first half of Chu-Bura is endearing and great, with a pop rock song belting out over the characters of The New Captain Shusuke Amagai arc going about their day to day life.

The animation is fluid and slick, and there’s this specific summery-sensation one can’t escape.

Once the chorus begins, things turn more action packed and in the process slightly more staler, showing the Shinigami and remaining Soul Society members battling their way through enemies in a fairly seen-before montage.

Nonetheless, it’s a short stay and an exciting one.


14. Opening #04: Tonight, Tonight, Tonight by Beat Crusaders

Opening #04: Tonight, Tonight, Tonight by Beat Crusaders intro theme

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Tonight, Tonight, Tonight is definitely the odd one out here.

It’s overwhelmingly Japanese rock, with a driving distorted guitar matching the raspy yell of the lead singer.

Meanwhile, stylized battle sequences and slower moments are shown all in time with the music. It’s unmistakably Bleach, somehow capturing the youthful energy without sacrificing its gritty core.

While it may not be my favorite, I can certainly see why it could be someone else’s.

It’s also befitting the anime-only filler arc it accompanies, The Bount arc, which many people consider a good example of Bleach in essence, though redundant.


13. Opening #12: ChAngE by Miwa

Opening #12: ChAngE by Miwa anime intro theme

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The Arrancar: Downfall arc is introduced with ChAngE, and it fits perfectly.

It’s explosive, action packed and dynamic just like those arcs, panning across all our major characters before once more reaching the chorus to blow up into a constantly moving compilation of fighting sequences.

It’s simple (but nonetheless effective) at building hype and anticipation.


12. Opening #11: Anima Rossa by Porto Graffitti

Opening #11: Anima Rossa by Porto Graffitti anime intro

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Part blues, part punk rock, Anima Rossa is a whistful and eccentric song.

It’s played over the initially sorrowed portrayal of Rukia and Ichigo before bursting out into chorus for a dramatic action set piece with all our characters battling in the Zanpakuto Unknown Tales arc.

However it’s lacking that certain Bleach vibe… that urban fantasy or gritty metal aesthetic it’s known for, and instead opts for a more laidback approach.


11. Opening #14: BLUE by ViViD

Opening #14: BLUE by ViViD anime intro preview

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Though energetic and enthusiastic, bursting at the seams with color and style, I feel as if BLUE doesn’t perfectly fit the aesthetic and tone of Bleach.

Nonetheless, it’s a rock treat with wicked crunching guitarwork and impressive singing and serves the action packed events of the Gotei 13 Invading Army arc suitably.

It’s just a shame that with so much happening, so many battles going on at once, it can be hard to follow.


10. Opening #06: Alones by Aqua Timez

Opening #06: Alones by Aqua Timez anime intro scene

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Alones has got to have one of the most jarring beginnings, with belting and wailing singing across a discordant guitar and monochromatic imagery.

We’re then given color and the verse starts to show a montage of recent events alongside a sweeping depiction of all the relevant players in the Hueco Mundo arc.

It’s got style and flair alongside an upbeat, energetic rock anthem.


9. Opening #15: Harukaze by SCANDAL

Opening #15: Harukaze by SCANDAL anime intro

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Harukaze is a weird opening.

It starts with an abstract minimalist aesthetic of Ichigo and his family going about their lives, before other characters are introduced in time with the chorus.

We’re then shown a battle montage animated particularly better than usual and a wicked callback to every titlecard of Bleach so far. The chorus is catchy and it has this faintly nostalgic aura about it that I can’t help but respect – especially as it’s the opening for The Lost Substitute Shinigami arc, and subsequently the final one.


8. Opening #13: Ranbu no Melody by SID

Opening #13: Ranbu no Melody by SID intro theme

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The latter half of the Arrancar: Downfall arc is lent SID’s remarkably unique vocal and instrumental style, with a pop-infused structure making it an infectiously catchy listen.

The aspect ratio is constantly changing, reflecting the gradual transition from 4:3 to 16:9 that Bleach underwent in its lifetime. And it’s also hyper-accentuating how much of the series has changed.

Many of the characters that appear in the animation are returning players, but rarely are we shown Ichigo, instead overwhelmed with montages of the intimidating enemies he’s left to topple.

It’s emotionally satisfying; with some truly gorgeous art direction (especially environmentally) leaving the viewer a sense of urbanized scale, befitting as the streets are where the battle is now.


7. Opening #09: Velonica by Aqua Timez

Opening #09: Velonica by Aqua Timez anime intro

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Velonica is a great example of Bleach, incorporating punk rock guitar work, constantly harmonic rapping, and a pop-infused chorus.

It’s colorful, sorrowful, nostalgic, and still somehow adrenaline inducing. Just as before, once the chorus begins things pick up, with various filters and different art styles introduced to convey a sense of change and determination.

This time, there’s a distinct lack of action sequencing but that’s for the better, allowing Aqua Timez the opportunity to tug at our heartstrings and pump us up for the upcoming Arrancar vs. Shinigami arc.


6. Opening #07: After Dark by Asian Kung-Fu Generation

Opening #07: After Dark by Asian Kung-Fu Generation anime intro

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It’s hard not to love the iconic seventh opening, with a more minimalistic design sensibility accompanies by the lovable vocal and guitar work of Asian Kung-Fu Generation.

It’s as sympathetic as it is exciting; reminding me of an older time in anime history where cool was the rule.

It’s subdued with its imagery and artistic decisions, using small fiery moments to reveal credits and otherwise allowing the artwork to do the anticipation for us.

It covers both the Arrancar: Hueco Mundo Sneak Entry and Arrancar: Fierce Fight arcs, but never outstays its welcome due to how tonally appropriate it is. Just one of the all-time greats, and yet…


5. Opening #10: Shojo S by SCANDAL

Opening #10: Shojo S by SCANDAL intro theme

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Wow! This hasn’t aged a day.

It’s just as enthusiastic, obnoxious, boisterous, and youthful. SCANDAL’s wonderful vocals start the opening with an eclectic rock performance until the chorus starts.

That’s when things really become impressive, with a brilliantly rendered Orihime and Ruki dancing to an upbeat and unescapably infectious energy lasting until the second repetition, where things turn even more dynamic.

There’s an amazing use of color throughout this part, really driving home.


4. Opening #03: Ichirin no Hana by High and Mighty Color

Opening #03: Ichirin no Hana by High and Mighty Color anime intro

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The climax and aftermath of the Soul Society: Rescue arc is accompanied by an upbeat, energetic smashing of drums and strumming of streams.

The vocal performance is sorrowful and lost, expressing the exhaustion and aggravation of our cast as they attempt to rescue Ruki and uncover the ulterior underbelly of the Soul Society.

The ending is harrowing, disturbing, and tonally appropriate.


3. Opening #02: D-technoLife by UVERworld

Opening #02: D-technoLife by UVERworld anime intro

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D-technoLife is the definition of Bleach for a lot of fans, marking a majority of the Soul Society arcs (Sneak Entry and Rescue).

It introduces the most ambitious and riveting of Bleach’s arc, alongside a host of fascinating and interesting characters never-before-seen.

It’s emotionally powerful, blending soulful vocals and anticipatory guitar to invoke nostalgia and determination.

One of my favorite openings as a child, and it still holds up today.


2. Opening #05: Rolling Star by YUI

Opening #05: Rolling Star by YUI intro theme

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Yui’s wonderfully youthful vocals initially embed the slice-of-life antics of the opening with a whimsical, childlike quality… until the chorus kicks in and the guitar’s prominence kicks it up to 11.

We’re shown fast moving action, negative image composition, illusive symbolism and imagery, and some truly beautiful stillshots.

It’s exciting, energetic, and suits the Bount Assault on Soul Society and Arrancar: Arrival arcs perfectly.


1. Opening #01: Asterisk by Orange Range

Opening #01: Asterisk by Orange Range anime intro preview

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Here we go. The one where it all began.

It took a lot of thought, but there’s no way I could put Asterisk anywhere else but first place.

It’s coated in the early-2000s from the aesthetic and colors through to the rock/rap.

The poses, the urban backdrops, the eccentric framing. Seeing Ichigo and Rukia bicker throughout legitimately brings a tear of my eye, reminding me of a simpler time both in life and within Bleach.

It’s the hallmark introduction to an unforgettable show, for better and worse, that influenced and defined an entire generation of anime watchers.

Without a doubt my personal best Bleach opening, both in terms of vocal performance and artistic direction.

There’s something about it that hasn’t been captured since; an innocent and youthful expressionism seldom seen in the specific way this production team managed to pull off.

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Kafka Champin

Kafka was playing games in utero, and writing lists even longer. He has published numerous books and video essays, and is currently a student at university.