Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Bleach Creator Tite Kubo Chose The Perfect American Punk Song For Ichigo's Personal Theme

Along with "One Piece" and "Naruto," Tite Kubo's "Bleach" is often deemed one of the big three of "Shonen Jump," thanks to its immense popularity. In 2012, the anime was abruptly canceled, meaning fans wouldn't see the final manga arc animated. That all changed in 2022, as the series made its glorious return with "Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War." It's been great to see Ichigo and his friends back in action, and fortunately, we're slated for more when the next season premieres in July 2023.

"Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War" reconfirmed what made Kubo's series so special among fans. It's an anime filled with spectacular fights, stellar character designs, and memorable music. Speaking of the latter, it appears that Kubo is definitely creatively inspired by listening to some great tunes. For all 68 of his characters in "Bleach," the mangaka listed actual songs as personal themes. Looking over Kubo's list of character themes reveals a musical palette that travels globally and often sticks in the realm of rock. Kubo began telling some of these character themes throughout volumes of his manga. And, of course, at the beginning of "Bleach," he started with the main character Ichigo, who has the ideal personal theme courtesy of a legendary American punk band.

Kubo chose Bad Religion's News From The Front

At the end of "Bleach" Manga Chapter 7, Tite Kubo revealed that Bad Religion's "News From The Front" is Ichigo's theme song. The punk rock song was released as a B-side on the 1994 album, "Stranger Than Fiction," yet sonically, it fits Ichigo perfectly. As the guitar-led track marches along to a dire tempo, it's easy to imagine "News From The Front" blasting in the background as Ichigo runs headfirst into battle, swinging his sword without an ounce of hesitation. But while the sound of "News From The Front" has probably granted many anime music video producers an appropriate soundtrack, the song's lyrics dealt with serious real-world issues. In a 1996 Roger Vulture interview, Bad Religion guitarist Brett Gurewitz said the lyrics questioned why the U.S. government wasn't doing more to help people suffering from AIDS. This feels like the case, especially with the song's last line, which goes, "How many more will have to die?/Why does the government decry?/The news from the front?"

The serious subject matter of "News From The Front" obviously has nothing to do with Ichigo or his time as a Soul Reaper. But the song's fearlessness in calling out injustices and inadequate power systems continues the core ethos of punk rock music. Ichigo's casual design in the series suggests that he would be a fan of the genre, but his actions in "Bleach" genuinely give the impression that he's a good-natured punk at his heart. With the hero rebelling against the powers that be and fighting any injustice from local bullies to even Soul Society, it's easy to see why Kubo would consider "News From The Front," Ichigo's theme song.