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DRAGON in BLEACH: Ikkaku Bankal Killer

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Ikkaku Madarame
  • Voiced by: Nobuyuki Hiyama (Japanese), Vic Mignogna (English)

Ikkaku Madarame (斑目 一角, Madarame Ikkaku) is the 3rd Seat of the 11th Division. He is a battle-loving man with a shaven head. He fought and was defeated by Kenpachi Zaraki sometime in the past, though was strong enough to survive the battle. Once Zaraki became captain of the 11th Division, Ikkaku and his friend Yumichika Ayasegawa joined the Soul Reapers so that they could fight and die under Zaraki's command. He shares a number of similarities with his captain such as seeking enjoyment in battles by risking his life. He is purportedly the second strongest man in the division. Though strong enough to take a position as a captain, Ikkaku insists his one mission in life is to die under the command of Zaraki.
Ikkaku's zanpakutō is Hōzukimaru (鬼灯丸, referring to the Japanese name for the winter cherry, meaning "demon light"). Though ordinary in appearance, he stores a blood-clotting ointment in its hilt. When released, it transforms into a yari with a wax wood shaft.While he usually treats it as such, he can also turn its shaft into a three section staff to surprise the opponent. Ikkaku has achieved bankai, though he keeps this a secret to most characters so that he is not pressured to become a captain. Hōzukimaru's bankai, named Ryūmon Hōzukimaru (龍紋鬼灯丸, literally "dragon-crest demon light"), takes the form of three oversized weapons connected by a thick chain: two blades in each of his hands and a fan-shaped blade, adorned with a carving of a Chinese dragon, which floats behind him. Aside from the increase in power, his bankai offers no special abilities, and is noted to be unusual for a bankai in this respect. As a fight progresses, the dragon crest will slowly begin to glow crimson, greatly increasing its power as it does so.This is so because the dragon of the bankai does not wake up on being called upon. It wakes up slowly from its sweet sleep only after attacking the enemy or being attacked upon Ikaku himself by the opponent. The dragon is fully awake and full powered when the red chinese dragon in it is fully red.  Hozukimaru appears as a free zanpakutō in the Zanpakutō Unknown Tales anime arc, resembling a large muscular oni.


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