It’s another beautiful-looking Waifu Wednesday, friends, and today I will be talking about the wonderful Rangiku Matsumoto from Bleach. This lady, similar to Yoruichi, was one of the original waifus for me when I was younger and addicted to any shounen series that I could get my hands on.
Bleach was a truly exceptional series when it came to its cast of female characters, especially in comparison to the two series it was commonly compared to — One Piece and Naruto. While One Piece does have some phenomenal female characters, they tend to come in just two shapes, and Naruto… well, I liked Tsunade I suppose.
Bleach, meanwhile, was loaded with ladies that were amazingly well designed as well as being strong and unique.
Who is Rangiku Matsumoto?
Within the world of Bleach, there exists a world known as Soul Society, and this is where souls who have passed on reside until they are reincarnated and sent back to the human world. Within Soul Society there is a military branch known as the 13 Court Guard Squads or Gotei 13, which is made up of 13 divisions. These divisions are made up of numerous members, each of which is led by a Captain and their lieutenant.
Rangiku is the lieutenant of the 10th Division within the Gotei 13, and the second in command to the young genius known as Toshiro Hitsugaya. When it comes to personality, Rangiku can often be found lazing around and avoiding doing any paperwork at all costs, much to the disappointment of her captain.
Rangiku is quite curvaceous and this is something that she is very much aware of. This is a part of her that she is proud of and she isn’t above using her charms to help get her way in numerous situations throughout the series.
Why We Love Rangiku
I mentioned that Rangiku is very much aware of her feminine attributes and despite this being something of a fanservicey element, I do find it quite refreshing to see a character so aware of their charms and taking pride in their appearance. There are lots of characters similar in design to Rangiku who are used for purely for fanservice and nothing else — Rangiku, meanwhile, is a genuinely compelling character who has one of the most interesting relationships in the series.
The relationship I’m talking about is the one with the aforementioned Toshiro Hitsugaya, her division captain. For someone to be in the position of a Gotei 13 captain, they must be incredibly strong and have mastered the power known as Bankai. Bankai is the ultimate technique for Soul Reapers and takes years to be able to perform, and even longer to master. Toshiro is in a unique position as he is extremely young despite having the role of captain — and it was his lieutenant Rangiku that convinced him to become a Soul Reaper when he was a child.
Rangiku will take any chances that she can get to slack off and avoid paperwork, whereas Toshiro is extremely hardworking. This dynamic between the two makes for constant comedy and as a result, is one of my favourite character relationships in the series. Even with the constant bickering, the two have tremendous respect for one another, they are very conscious of each other’s feelings, and always have one another’s backs. This is why this pairing is still so liked.
Why You Will Love Rangiku
Well, if you’re anything like me and your taste in female anime characters falls on the more mature and sexy side of the spectrum as opposed to the cute side, then you will most likely fall in love with Rangiku at first sight. In my opinion, the fanservice she provided was never too much, and certainly didn’t take away from her as a character; instead, it added to her fun-loving personality that worked really well when combined with characters like Orihime or Toshiro.
Rangiku is a character that ultimately contrasts with the vibe her appearance may give off — she is most definitely not the ditzy blonde. Rangiku is great at understanding people, listening to their problems, and then helping them push past them. She may be lazy, but she can do a complete 180 and become incredibly serious without a moment’s hesitation when absolutely necessary.
It’s hard to compete in a waifu war when Yoruichi, one of the greatest female characters in anime, is starring in the same series. However, Rangiku does a fantastic job of being a memorable character that can stand on her own but becomes even more powerful when paired with her ever-popular captain.
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