Ichigo Kurosaki has always been able to see and interact with ghosts, but one day after witnessing a fight between a shinigami called Rukia and an evil spirit known as a Hollow, he finds himself dragged into a completely new life. When Rukia’s body shrinks after the battle, she is unable to carry out her soul reaper duties and forces Ichigo to become a substitute shinigami for seven days while she recuperates. Now he spends his days freeing souls from their bodies and defeating evil spirits, but when one of his classmates dies and is kidnapped by a hollow, Ichigo must race to save her and ferry her safely to the next world…
The story is sorely lacking in domestic abuse. I knew that the domestic abuse in the main series was one of the reasons I fell in love with it, but I sometimes forget how absolutely vital it is and how drab the story would be without it--how drab this pilot chapter actually is without it. Related to that, the characters feel less flamboyant and less fleshed out. Orihime, for example, is shown to be a bit dumb, but not nearly as humorously as in the main series. Ichigo feels a lot more generic in this version. And the designs for Hollows are more human-like and haven't yet reached the coolness they eventually achieve. But the basic ideas are already there: the function of soul reapers, the existence of Hollows, Ichigo's spiritual powers, and the need for fem to take over Rukia's duties. The most obvious difference is that Rukia shrinks down into a miniature form after fe lost feir powers. The plotline is basically chapters 1-6 in the main series, but with things a lot less fleshed out (and thus worse).
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