Just a note: NYL stands for Not Yet Licensed and implies that it’s not licensed in North America because.. that’s where I live.
So.. you’re an average high school student. You’ve been able to see ghosts ever since you can remember. Every once in a while, they just want you to bring flowers to the place they died, sometimes, they want you to give a message to their undeparted loved ones, and other times… you have to fight with everything you have to save them from evil ghosts called “Hollows” so they can go to heaven. Of course, this does cramp your style as an ordinary high school student, but being a Death God does have its perks.
This, in a nutshell is the story driving Bleach. The manga is currently being published in Shonen Jump and as individual books by Viz.
Animation/Artwork: I’ll give it a C. The animation and artwork are on par with most things, not ground-breaking or anything like that, but not horrible. All in all, with the backgrounds, and occassional shows of awesome artistic talent, Bleach rates pretty high up.
Soundtrack: Excellent. The music fits the scenes, the opening title track makes you want to get up and dance, the closing title is a little off kilter, but not so far off the mark that you want to skip past it.
Subbing: Not reviewed.
Dubbing: The voice acting work here is not what I’d call superb, but it’s also not bad.
Story: This is where Bleach shines. Gripping story, it sucks you in from the first episode to the last. Bleach is where it’s at if you like dark and spooky stories with a bit of comic relief mixed in.
Overall: Good stuff. Entertaining, fun, and a wild action packed ride.