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In this Japanese name, the family name is Kubo.

Noriaki Kubo (久保 宣章 Kubo Noriaki?) (born June 26, 1977), known by his pen name Tite Kubo (久保 帯人 Kubo Taito?), is a Japanese manga artist. His most significant work is the manga series Bleach.


The son of a town council member in Fuchu, Aki District, Hiroshima, Kubo graduated from the local high school. In an interview, Kubo has stated that he entered a magazine's manga contest, and that although he did not win, one of the magazine's editors noticed his talent. They subsequently worked together on joint projects.[1] Not long afterward, his first manga short, "Ultra Unholy Hearted Machine", was published in Shueisha's Weekly Shōnen Jump Special in 1996. This was followed by two more shorts, and in 1999 his first serial, Zombiepowder., began in Weekly Shōnen Jump and ran for four volumes until 2000, when it was cancelled. According to the author's commentary in the cover leaf of the third tankōbon, Kubo was in a state of severe emotional trauma when he wrote it.[2]

His next series, Bleach, about a high school student who becomes a shinigami and fights evil spirits, began running in the same magazine in 2001. Kubo initially expected the series' serialization to continue no longer than five years.[citation needed] As of June 2010, Bleach has reached over 400 chapters, and an anime adaptation began running in Japan in 2004. The manga was named a winner of the Shogakukan Manga Award for its category in 2005.[3] Kubo and Makoto Matsubara have co-authored two novelizations of the Bleach series, which were published by Shueisha under their Jump Books label.[4][5] A Bleach movie was released in Japan on December 16, 2006, followed by a second movie on December 22, 2007. Kubo also appeared in the episode 112 of the Japanese radio program of Bleach B-Station. In that program, Kubo was interviewed by Masakazu Morita, voice actor of Ichigo Kurosaki, the main character of Bleach, and answered several questions from fans.[6] On July 26, 2008, Kubo went to the United States for the first time and made an appearance at the San Diego Comic-Con International.[7]


Bleach was first conceived from a desire on Kubo's part to draw shinigami in kimono, which formed the basis for the design of the Soul Reapers in the series, and conception of the character Rukia Kuchiki.[8] Kubo has cited influences for elements of Bleach ranging from other manga series to music, foreign language, architecture, and film. He attributes his interest in drawing the supernatural and monsters to Shigeru Mizuki's GeGeGe no Kitaro and Bleach's focus on interesting weaponry and battle scenes to Masami Kurumada's Saint Seiya, both manga Kubo enjoyed as a boy.[8] The action style and storytelling found in Bleach is inspired by cinema, though Kubo has not revealed any specific movie as being an influence for fight scenes. When pressed, he told interviewers that he liked Snatch but did not use it as a model.[9] Kubo has also stated that he wishes to make Bleach an experience that can only be found by reading manga, and dismissed ideas of creating any live-action film adaptations of the series.[10]

In the making of battle scenes, Kubo's main inspiration is rock music. He comments he imagines the fights with that music and then he tries to find the best angle to make it.[11] Then, he tries to make the injuries look very realistic in order to make the readers feel the character's pain.[12] Kubo mentions he sometimes is bored while illustrating them, so he tries to add a few jokes to make it more humorous.[11] When creating characters, Kubo first attempts to create the design and later decide how it will be his personality according to what he drew. Since creating them like this, Kubo considers every character to be unique and wants each of them to be developed along the series.[13] When asked about romantic relationships between certain characters, Kubo answers saying that he does not want to turn the series into a love story since he thinks there are more exciting aspects concerning their personalities.[14] Other characters from the series also use different languages to describe their terms. The powers from the Quincy are taken from German, while Hollows and arrancar creatures instead use Spanish terms. Kubo became interested in Spanish because, to him, the language sounded "bewitching" and "mellow". The names of the arrancar are also based from famous Spanish architects and designers.[15]



  • "Fire in the Sky" (1995, Shueisha's Hop Step Award finalist.)
  • "Ultra Unholy Hearted Machine" (1996, Weekly Shōnen Jump Special. Appears in volume 2 of Zombiepowder..)
  • "Rune Master Urara" (刻魔師 麗 Kokumashi Urara?) (1996, Weekly Shōnen Jump. Appears in volume 3 of Zombiepowder..)
  • "Bad Shield United" (1997, Weekly Shōnen Jump. Appears in volume 4 of Zombiepowder.. Also makes a cameo in Bleach as the fictitious movie Bad Shield United 2.)


Initially appearing in Weekly Shōnen Jump and published by Shueisha in Tokyo, Japan, both manga have been licensed in North America by Viz Media.

  • Zombiepowder. (1999–2000, Weekly Shōnen Jump, Shueisha. Collected in four volumes in 2000 and discontinued.)
  • Bleach (2001—, Weekly Shōnen Jump, Shueisha. Collected in 45+ volumes.)


  • Bleach All Colour But The Black[16]
  • Bleach Official Bootleg[17]


  • Bleach Official Character Book SOULs[18]
  • Bleach Official Anime Guide Book VIBEs[19]


  1. Shonen Jump, Viz Media (volume 4, issue 3)
  2. Kubo, Tite (2000). Zombiepowder. vol. 03. Shueisha. Author's commentary. ISBN 4-08-872877-7. 
  3. "小学館漫画賞:歴代受賞者" (in Japanese). Shogakukan. Retrieved 2007-08-19. 
  4. "Bleach novel series" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-15. 
  5. "Bleach novel series" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-15. 
  6. Tite Kubo, Masakazu Morita. (August 2007). Tite Kubo Interview, Bleach B-Station 112. Japan: Bleach B-Station.
  7. "Comic-con 2008 Guests". Comic-Con_International. Retrieved 2009-12-12. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 Deb Aoki. "Interview: Tite Kubo (page 1)". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  9. Shonen Jump #51. Volume 5, issue 3. March 2007. Viz Media. 328.
  10. Shonen Jump #39. Volume 4, issue 3. March 2006. Viz Media. 010.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Deb Aoki. "Interview: Tite Kubo (page 3)". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  12. Kai-ming Cha (2008-08-04). "Kubo Comes to Comic-Con". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved 2008-09-17. 
  13. Anime Insider (Wizard Universe) (61): p. 39. 2008. ISSN 1547-3767.  Unknown parameter |month= ignored (help); Missing or empty |title= (help)
  14. Deb Aoki. "Interview: Tite Kubo (page 2)". Retrieved 2008-09-16. 
  15. Shonen Jump. Volume 6, issue 6. June 2008. Viz Media. 12.
  16. "BLEACHイラスト集 All Colour But The Black" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 
  17. "BLEACH OFFICIAL BOOTLEG カラブリ+| 久保 帯人| ジャンプコミックス" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 
  18. "BLEACH―ブリーチ― OFFICIAL CHARACTER BOOK SOULs" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 
  19. "BLEACH―ブリーチ― OFFICIAL ANIMATION BOOK VIBEs" (in Japanese). Shueisha. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 

External links

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