The Royal Guard has, for a long time, been an enigma in the world of Tite Kubo’s Bleach, but with the threat of Yhwach’s Sternritter becoming real, the Royal Guard descended from the Soul King Palace to help rebuild the Seireitei. Thus, we saw its five Captains for the first time, and among them was Senjumaru Shutara, whose six long arms inspired both admiration and fear as they were quite unique in the lore. Senjumaru had a very specific role in the story and a very specific personality, which is why we have decided to write about this Royal Guard member here on Fiction Horizon.
Senjumaru Shutara is a powerful Shinigami and a member of the Royal Guard, i.e., the Zero Division. She was the only female member of the Royal Guard until Kirio Hikifune was invited to join. She is credited with inventing the Shihakushō, which is also why she was invited to join the Royal Guard. Later on, she also invented Ōken Clothing.
The rest of this article is going to focus, as you’ve probably deduced for yourselves, on Senjumaru Shutara, the inventor of the Shihakushō and a member of the Royal Guard. She is a very interesting character who appeared late in the story and had a major impact on the story, which is why we are going to tell you everything you need to know about her. Spoilers from the manga are going to be present, so be careful how you approach the article.
Who is Senjumaru Shutara in Bleach?
Senjumaru Shutara is a powerful Shinigami and a member of the Royal Guard, i.e., the Zero Division. She was the only female member of the Royal Guard until Kirio Hikifune was invited to join. She is credited with inventing the Shihakushō, which is also why she was invited to join the Royal Guard. Later on, she also invented Ōken Clothing, which was relevant later on in the plot.
Senjumaru and the other Royal Guard members visit the Soul Society after Captain-Commander Yamamoto dies, where they are welcomed by the remaining Captains and Ichigo Kurosaki. After they exit the Tenchūren, she plays multiple instruments simultaneously to provide music for the parade that accompanies their arrival.
Senjumaru arrives with Byakuya Kuchiki, Renji Abarai, Rukia Kuchiki, and the shattered Tensa Zangetsu to cure them correctly as the other members of Zero Division discuss how to transport Ichigo to the Royal Palace. At one moment, she said that she has gathered everyone who was present on their list. She then indicates Ichigo by name and claims that he is the only person who is missing. Captain Unohana complains about this choice, claiming that her patients are gravely injured and hence unable to leave the Seireitei, but another Guard, namely Kirinji, rejects her claim.
Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi then asks Senjumaru whether she entered his lab without his permission to acquire it after spotting Tensa Zangetsu. She appears rather startled by Mayuri’s presence and claims that she merely put her hands on the door and that it then opened all by itself, annoying Mayuri in the process. She claimed that compared to when she was there the previous time, the lock was simpler to pick.
They leave the Tenchūren as the Royal Guard, the hurt Shinigami, and Ichigo arrive at the Reiōkyū. Senjumaru gets up and starts talking to Ichigo about the idea that Aizen intended to create life, overthrow the King, and become a God as Ichibē and Ichigo discuss the Ōken and Sōsuke Aizen. Aizen is unquestionably the “person of evil,” but the Wandenreich Quincys are far worse, she continues.
Senjumaru is mentioned by Renji and Rukia during their training with Ichibē Hyōsube, who comment on the ordeal they had to go through with the Royal Guard. Immediately afterward, a mini-flashback is shown where Senjumaru forces Renji and Rukia to undress in order to take the proper measurements of their Shihakushō. At that moment, Renji strongly protests against Senjumaru for forcing him to remove the Fundoshi from him.
Faced with this refusal, Senjumaru threatens Renji that if he doesn’t take off his underwear for good, she herself will proceed to cut off “the little Renji” and then take her measurements, a fact that forced Lieutenant Abarai to strip off said garment. Later on, Senjumaru and Tenjiro assist Ichigo in leaving the Reiōkyū and traveling to the Seireitei by materializing a spiral staircase that leads to the Soul Society.
Senjumaru confronts Yhwach with numerous soldiers after he crosses Kirinji, saying that it has been a while. She berates him for showing up without permission and queries whether he is still dissatisfied with the killing of Yamamato. She commands her warriors to attack Yhwach, but Kirinji is similarly protected from attack.
She watches the Sternritter emerge from the ground. The Quincy introduces himself as Nianzol Weizol the Sternritter W The Wind, and while his soldiers attack him to no avail, he explains to Senjumaru his ability, which consists of deflecting everything that approaches him. She tells him that he told her that he cannot deflect to an opponent that she does not see, but Quincy tells her that even if she does not see it, she will deflect it anyway, and at that moment, she shows a needle with thread, explains that she has the title of “Senjumaru” for being the fastest at sewing and tells him shows that he sewed the symbol of the Zero Squad on his tunic.
Nianzol tells her that that will not stop him, but she tells him that for wearing a robe that already belongs to him, one of his pawns does it and proceeds to attack him from inside the suit. After defeating the Sternritter W Nianzol Weizol, Senjumaru proceeds to attack Yhwach along with his soldiers. However, the Quincy summons his Elite Guard to face the soldiers of the Soul King.
Senjumaru is then attacked by Gerad Valkyrie, who breaks one of his arms, so Shutara calls her soldiers, whom she orders to form the Soul King formation, after which a huge soldier appears. But, he is easily defeated by the Sternritter C, Pernida Parnkgjas, while the Sternritter X, Lille Barro, pulls out a huge weapon, and before firing, he reminds Senjumaru that this is no longer the Soul King Palace and shoots; the attack falls directly on Senjumaru’s forehead.
Lille Barro is surprised to see how the Palace is changing and very annoyed; he screams for an explanation about what he is seeing around him. Then the real Senjumaru appears behind him and explains that the real Palace is hidden and that this Fake Palace was a decoy just like the fake Senjumaru, and also informs him that it was Ichibē Hyōsube who hid it. After Ichibē was defeated by Yhwach, Senjumaru, along with the other members of the Royal Guard, was also defeated by the elite Sternritter. She was, along with the other members of Zero Division, later revived by Ichibē, as was revealed in Can’t Fear Your Own World.
What are Senjumaru Shutara’s powers and abilities?
As a member of the Royal Guard (i.e., the Zero Division), Senjumaru Shutara is one of the most powerful characters in the entire Bleach universe, possessing a large amount of Reiatsu. Her skills have been shown both in battle with Yhwach and his Sternritter, as well as outside of battle, making her a truly formidable foe.
In battle, she has proven herself to be a cunning and exceptionally fast opponent. She was able to defeat Nianzol with exceptional ease and was also able to hold her own against the elite guard, along with the other members of the Royal Guard. The issue is that Yhwach managed to revive them, which made fighting almost impossible at one point, but Senjumau Shurata proved that she was more capable than them under equal conditions. Although it was not revealed in detail, she is probably an expert in both Kido and Zanjutsu, since all the Royal Guard members are extremely potent fighters; we don’t see why Senjumaru Shutara would be an exception here. On top of that, she is able to maintain the fake Palace and an illusion of herself, which is further proof of her enormous Reiatsu. The name of her Zanpakutō has not been revealed.
As for her other abilities, she is quite proficient with sewing and is so fast that she is called 1,000 Arms, which is actually her name – Senjumaru – in Japanese. She invented the Shihakushō, the standard Shinigami uniform, and due to that fact, she actually became a member of the Royal Guard. She also used her skills to create the Ōken Clothing, which you can deduce are quite important due to their connection with the Ōken.
She also has a group of formidable and dangerous guards at her disposal and can also summon a very large, powerful guard, which was seen when the Royal Guard engaged the Sternritter in the Soul King Palace. This is why Senjumaru Shutara is so powerful and important.