Aizen will remain known as Bleach‘s best and most popular villain. Despite numerous attempts, Aizen’s villainous arc has not been surpassed by anyone, even Yhwach, who was certainly a more dangerous threat than him. After his downfall, Aizen was imprisoned and restrained in the Muken, which raised the question – are we going to see more of him in the Thousand-Year Blood War? Keep reading to find out the answer to that question.
Aizen will appear in the Thousand-Year Blood War, and he already has in the first cour of episodes, but his role will progressively increase in later episodes. Initially, Aizen was approached by Yhwach to join his cause, but Aizen refused, being a proud Shinigami who would never bow down to the likes of Yhwach. Kyoraku later realized that he could be useful, so he set him free and broke some of his restraints, which prompted Aizen to help the Seireitei defend itself after Yhwach merged with the Soul King. When Yhwach came down to the Seireitei, he completely freed Aizen from his restraints, and the former Captain, instead of helping him, fought against him and ultimately helped Ichigo defeat Yhwach once and for all.
The rest of this article will be about Sosuke Aizen, his fate, and his further appearances in the Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War anime series. Based on that, we will tell you what happened to him and whether there is a chance for him to return again in the current anime season of Bleach. If you’re not fully up-to-date with absolutely everything that has happened in Bleach, we have to warn you that there will be a lot of spoilers in this article, so be careful how you approach it when you read.
Spoiler Alert: If you’re not familiar with Bleach manga, the events that will be described below will be a massive spoiler! Read at your own risk!
Sosuke Aizen will not only be back in the Thousand-Year Blood War anime, he will play a major role in it
The name Sosuke Aizen is well known to Bleach fans, but also a lot of those who haven’t actually seen Bleach. Due to his intelligence and the meticulousness of his plans, he has gained the status of the franchise’s best villain, despite having tough competition, as Bleach has had some truly amazing villain characters in that aspect. Now, we all know what happened to Aien – he betrayed Soul Society, went to Hueco Mundo, where he created an Arrancar army in hopes of defeating the Gotei 13 and reaching the Soul King’s Palace, but Ichigo eventually stopped him with the help of his allies and, especially, Kisuke Urahara, the only person whom Aizen deemed intellectually superior to himself.
After his defeat, he was imprisoned in the Muken, where his powers were sealed with powerful restraints, so he couldn’t even move. And while his presence was undoubtedly felt, Aizen was not a major player in the Quincy Blood War in the beginning, but we have to confirm that he will come back to the series and that his role will be quite important. Here is his story.
During the first invasion of the Seireitei, while his Sternritter are fighting the Gotei 13 members and the fake Yhwach is being killed by Yamamoto, the real Yhwach descends to the Muken offers to join Aizen free him if he joins them, but Aizen declines, which doesn’t bother Yhwach that much at the time, despite the fact that Aizen is considered to be a Special Threat. While they were talking, Aizen used an unknown technique to slightly affect Yhwach’s sense of time, which would prove pivotal later, as it triggered his retreat.
After Yhwach leaves for the Royal Palace, Shunsui Kyōraku goes to the Central Chamber of the 46 to get permission to converse with Aizen. Kyōraku is allowed to break three of the seals binding Aizen. After Aizen doesn’t respond to initial attempts at conversation, Kyōraku unseals his mouth so that Aizen can respond without using Reiatsu.
However, not only the seal for his mouth is released, but also the others. Kyōraku then suggests that he sit on a chair he had brought with him and be taken out of prison to “breathe some fresh air.” One of the guards asks to tie Aizen again and approaches him before Kyōraku can stop him. His hands crumble to dust when he gets too close to Aizen, who explains that the shackles only keep his Reiatsu in his immediate vicinity, not obliterating it entirely, and scoffs at the guards’ carelessness.
Aizen asks the new Captain-Commander if he really thinks that if he lets himself be taken out he will fight for Soul Society, but Kyōraku replies that the pros and cons are similar for both sides. Aizen then replies that he can hardly hope to breathe fresh air in Soul Society after what Yhwach did there. After Ichigo and his friends fall from the Reioukyuu, Yhwach absorbs the Soul King. Since it was once sealed by the Shinigami, its fragments, which Yhwach cannot ingest, make their way to Seireitei and attack the Shinigami.
While Soi Fon, Ikkaku, Yumichika, Shūhei, Byakuya, Renji, and Rukia seem powerless against the overwhelming majority of the Soul King’s shadow fragments, Aizen rushes in and crushes them under the chair he’s still tied to, seemingly effortlessly. When Aizen then asks Kyōraku to untie the rest of his bonds as well, the latter replies that he was only given permission to remove three of the seals but that he is confident that Aizen will think of something to stop their enemies regardless of his restraints. Aizen smiles and replies that Kyōraku is making it difficult for him and uses Hado #90: Kurohitsugi, which destroys all of the Soul King’s fragments at once.
Urahara notes that Aizen’s powers seem to have increased even more compared to when he fought Ichigo. When Soi Fon wants to use her Bankai to destroy the black web that now surrounds the city, Aizen explains that this is unnecessary as his Kurohitsugi has already caused cracks in the web, and his Reiatsu alone is now enough to destroy it. When he uses his Reiatsu against the shadows, he also destroys the portal to the Reioukyuu that Urahara had set up, but Aizen declares this to be unnecessary as well since there are already holes in the Reioukyuu’s protective wall through which one can also get there and announces that he will help them get there.
Not long after, Yhwach descends to the Seireitei and begins merging the realms. He also frees Sosuke Aizen completely and offers him another chance to join him, but Aizen refuses, claiming that he is a Shinigami and that a Shinigami is superior to him, regardless of everything. He also claims that he will not allow him to take Soul Society, as it belongs only to him and no one else.
Aizen fights alongside Ichigo, Renji, and Ishida, but his attacks don’t seem to work on Yhwach until it turns out that he actually managed to use his Shikai’s ability to trick Yhwach into believing that he was fighting Ichigo, while he was actually fighting him. Ichigo and the others used Yhwach’s moment of confusion to weaken him fully and then ultimately defeat and kill him.
After this, Aizen was once again sealed and sent down to the Muken, as was seen in the opening volume of the Can’t Fear Your Own World light novel, which actually serves as a direct sequel to the manga. Aizen was once again seen ten years after Yhwach’s defeat, when Kauzi Kurosaki destroyed the last remnants of Yhwach’s spiritual pressure. He then finally felt it and, with a sigh of relief, commented how Yhwach was finally gone for good now.