I never thought too deeply about the connection between a zanpakuto and it’s master until we met the creator of zanpakutos. Until that moment I thought Shinigami were given their sword and they were meant to learn its name and its bankai. I thought the zanpakuto and its master were separate entities.
However through Ichigo we learnt that that was not so. At least not for Ichigo.
So they (Renji and Ichigo) meet Oetsu Nimaiya and he’s the creator of zanpakuto and Ichigo and Renji have to find their zanpakuto. Ichigo however can’t and is expelled back to Earth. There he meets his dad and he finds out his true past. What happened to his mother, who his mother was and the truth about his abilities.
Looking back Aizen almost spilled the tea to Ichigo once but he was interrupted by an attack. When I saw that I was wondering how long until we got to know the rest of the sentence. Because someone spoiled it for me I already knew what Ichigo was but I still anticipated seeing him find out for himself.
Finally he knows himself and he’s whisked back to the royal place and he finds zangetsu straight away. Zangetsu is then made by Ichigo, right?
It was this moment that was deep for me. Zangetsu was not just his zanpakuto, he was Ichigo, a manifestation of his soul, of his inner being. By looking at zangetsu you are looking at Ichigo. It’s like how in His Dark Materials when you’re looking at someone’s daemon you’re looking at a part of their soul.
I then began to see events differently. All those times Ichigo hollified and went crazy. I used to think the hollow in him was taking over but really Hollow Ichi was trying to save him. He was the real zangestsu and all the time he was saving Ichigo whilst the quincy side was like “Erm, I’m not sure I want this for him so no”.
Also Ichigo is a pretty calm guy who feels things deeply. He doesn’t always let out what he’s feeling. Zangetsu shows a side of him he represses. A side that enjoys battle, that doesn’t take crap and is ruthless.
So now when I look at Shinigami’s zanpakutos I see their true personality, their inner self that they may not show and it’s interesting.
They’re like cats, you don’t choose your zanpakuto, it chooses you and is a part of you or becomes a part of you like with Kenpachi.
I wonder what my zanpakuto would say about me.