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The Worst Bleach Arc According To Fans

With a full 15 years of publication under its belt, there's a lot to experience when it comes to "Bleach." The original manga, written by Tite Kubo, ran for 74 chapters between 2001 and 2016 (per Fandom). Likewise, the popular TV anime adaptation aired between 2004 and 2012. In that time, 366 episodes of the series were created and aired, with much of that being non-canon filler content exclusive to the show itself. Canonically (that is, according to the manga), the series is divided into 12 distinct story arcs of varying length (via List Fist). Most of these arcs were beloved, or at least tolerated by, the series' legions of fans.

However, not all of these arcs were created equally. In any story that is divided into separate parts, people are going to like certain sections more than others— and some people are going to think certain sections are straight up bad. "Bleach," among all anime, is no exception to this rule. Out of all 12 "Bleach" arcs, however, fans generally point to a specific one as the worst.

Fans hate the Lost Substitute Shinigami Arc

In a massive poll conducted by members of the r/Bleach Subreddit, "Bleach" fans discovered that the community's least favorite arc was the "Lost Substitute Shinigami" arc, also known as the "Lost Agent" arc. These results came by a wide margin, with 49% of the overall fanbase labeling it their least favorite of the 12 arcs. Unfortunately, fans in this particular thread did not specify why the Lost Agent Arc — which covers how Ichigo Kursaki regains his spiritual powers following the previous arc — is so bad. For that, we have to turn to other threads on the matter.

"It's bad ...if you're only in for the fights," wrote a now-deleted user on a separate Reddit thread. "The arc is a new beginning with character development, however, the new characters don't get as much [development]."

"In true 'Bleach' fashion, it starts with infinite potential and intrigue," wrote u/Kaiser_Dragon. "Which is then completely thrown out the window toward the end due to whiny fans, editors, and/or the health of the author, so that an interesting premise and phenomenal symbolism fizzles out like a sparkler in water. Other than that, it's pretty good."

While it does seem that fans generally hold a low opinion of the "Lost Agent" arc compared to other arcs, it isn't without its strengths. As such, it isn't surprising that fans consider it necessary to watch in order to enjoy the whole series.