Bleach is one of the best anime of all time. Its original run had a total of 366 episodes (subdivided into narrative arcs). On March 21, 2020, during the manga’s 20th anniversary, Tite Kubo announced that the final arc, covering volumes 55 to 74 of the manga, titled Thousand Years Blood-War, would be adapted. The arc is currently airing and has fans all over the world excited, but is Bleach actually appropriate for children? In this article, we have decided to tell you whether the series is appropriate for kids or not.
Bleach is categorized as TV-PG in the United States; in Japan, the show is listed as being G. Bleach is a very family and kid-friendly show and is a typical representative of the shonen genre, which is why there is absolutely no doubt that it is appropriate for all audiences who can follow the plot. The newer episodes are definitely more violent and more graphic, but they don’t influence the overall tone of the series.
In the paragraphs that follow, we are going to elaborate on this answer and give you some additional information on the show’s content. You’re going to find out whether Bleach is appropriate for children, how scary and gory it is, whether there is sex, nudity, and profanities, as well as what age it is appropriate for. This is going to be your ultimate parents guide for Bleach.
What age is Bleach appropriate for?
As per the official ratings, Bleach is rated as “PG”, which means “parental guidance”. That standard is defined as follows: Most parents will find this program suitable for all ages. Japan lists the series as a G one, whereas most other countries have it listed in similar age categories (12-16, depending on the country). No countries have applied a stricter standard for Bleach, which says enough about the maturity of its content.
This means that Bleach is a show that is appropriate for teenagers and older fans. Children under the age of 14 should not be able to watch the series, as there is content that might be inappropriate for them as per the standard. This is the official rating for the show and we are now going to observe how things stand in several different categories.
Bleach: Sex & Nudity
As we could have seen, the series has a very mild level of nudity and some very benign sexual references, but over the course of the series, there haven’t been many such scenes and they were – in most cases – shown in a very comical context. Here is an example of some scenes involving nudity and/or sexual references:
- Some characters have very curvy bodies and mildly revealing clothes, but nothing is explicitly shown.
- Some characters appear in the nude, but all the important body parts are hidden.
- There are some mild references to obscene acts involving Mayuri and Nemu, but that is only suggested.
- There is a beach filler episode where almost all the female characters can be seen in bathing suits.
- Some male characters tend to appear shirtless from time to time.
As you can see, this is really not much, and while some scenes might be a bit suggestive, they are very limited.
Bleach: Violence & Gore
The violence of the fights in Bleach has also been described as moderate in general, although the newer episodes are much more explicit in their depictions, which is why certain moments would definitely earn a PG rating. The number of such scenes is very small and limited overall; the uncut version has more of them, but as stated, it’s nothing over the top. The fight scenes are epic, and violence is depicted in the show as per the plot, but it’s nothing over the top and it’s not particularly graphic or gory.
A lot of the violence portrayed in Bleach is cartoony and you won’t have any trouble with it, and neither will your children. There are scenes that suggest some deeper violence, but they are mostly comical. As the series progressed, the violence and the fights become more intense, there is more blood and even some morbid elements, but it’s still not over the top, and it’s part of the series’ inherent realism.
As far as profanities are concerned, they are not heavily featured in Bleach, although they are present. Examples of words that can be heard are “ass”, “hell”, “ass”, “piss”, and “prick”, and we can hear the word “bitch” used thrice during the series. Now, this might bother some viewers and it is something that children shouldn’t really repeat, but it adds to the realism of the show, doesn’t it?
First of all, we have to state that the characters of Bleach are all fighters who fight and face various threats in their daily adventures to save their friends and families, as well as their world, and people don’t really tend to watch their language while they’re fighting an Arrancar or a Sternritter, don’t they? It would be silly if these characters didn’t curse from time to time, wouldn’t it? This is only realistic and the series adds to it by adapting the language to be appropriate for a specific situation.
So, profanities are certainly present in the show but we don’t think it’s something bad. It simply adds to the show’s realism and it helps the viewers to better understand the characters, the world, and the complete setting. Anything else would be completely out-of-character, which is why we can only praise the authenticity of the show. And, on top of that, they are really not heavily featured and are not severe.
Should you allow your kids to watch Bleach?
Bleach is one of the more child-friendly anime series you can find today and is a remnant of the old anime generation. The show focuses on various issues and is a typical example of the shonen genre, but there is a focus on death that is more emphasized than in other works of the same group. This is why there is nothing overly exaggerated in Bleach, as all three major categories – sex & nudity, violence & gore, and profanity – are generally mild, with some moderate violence present in the fights, but it’s not over the top. The series focuses on adventures and the daily struggles of its protagonists.
Settings such as Bleach are nothing strange when Japanese art is concerned, and there are many other manga and anime that portray such worlds and that is why the shonen genre is so popular around the world.
Bleach is quite faithful to the original material, although there is also a lot of filler material in the series, that’s just how things were done back in the day. So, should you allow your children to watch Bleach?
Well, the official ratings do suggest that children under the age of 14 should not watch Bleach but it all comes down to your parental approach. We at Fiction Horizon honestly don’t think that there is anything bad in watching such animated shows (yours truly has personally grown up watching Dragon Ball, where he was exposed to a fully naked kid Goku, blood, characters piercing other characters’ bodies, and whatnot).
Bleach doesn’t really cross any borders which would make it overly inappropriate for children (for example, there is no cannibalism involved, no mutilations, no torture, no sexual violence, etc.).
Children under the age of 13 might be a tad confused if they cannot follow the plot, but we don’t think that those older than 13 or 14 will have any problems with the show. If your younger children can follow the plot, they can also watch Bleach because they could also learn a lot about friendship and heroism.
So, in our opinion, Bleach is appropriate for all ages and for children of all shapes and sizes, so if your child wants to watch it – we absolutely support it. Bleach is so important that we actually encourage you, as parents, to introduce your kids to Bleach because they’ll definitely love it.