Tite Kubo (born Noriaki Kubo, June 26, 1977; "Tite" is pronounced "Taito") is the creator of Zombiepowder. and the incredibly popular series Bleach. He has several often parodied weaknesses as a manga-ka (eschewing backgrounds, slow pace, Only Six Faces, Plotkai, creating new characters to overcome writer's block), etc. Despite this (or perhaps because of it), Bleach remains one of the most popular Shōnen manga in circulation today, partly due to the large amount of interesting characters and partly due to the sheer number of awesome moments the series has produced. His color cover pages always have characters in very trendy outfits.
He is widely considered to be a Trolling Creator, to the point of trolling demigod, given that he keeps a big part of the fandom riled up constantly no matter what he does. Here's his Twitter account. He's also good friends with fellow author Mayu Shinjo, based on their tweets. Sadly, he is also an Ill Boy: according to his twitter he's had constant health problems ever since Bleach's tenth publishing years.
When through his previous Twitter account he heard that Nick Simmons' comic Incarnate plagiarized his own works, he responded simply—
This earned him respect within his fandom.
The shutdown of RawParadise and a message from Shueisha in Shounen Jump asking people to report sites that host raws for scanlation across the globe seems to be at least partially attributed to Kubo, who had been receiving several tweets from foreign fans congratulating him on his 400th chapter of Bleach before it was even for sale in Japan, and him putting two and two together.
At Jump Festa 2012, Kubo said that he had recently gotten married, but didn't comment beyond that statement. Up to this day, the lady's identity hasn't been revealed, almost surely to protect her and Kubo's privacy.
For Jump's 50th anniversary in 2018, Kubo came back to make a oneshot, a romcom fantasy titled BURN THE WITCH.
Tite Kubo and his works provide examples of:
- Art Evolution: With time, the faces he draws have become more stylized and with finer features. As a drawback, he's often fallen in Only Six Faces syndrome. He jokes about it in-universe by having one Bleach character ask how his face is similar to the main character's, and also uses it as a plot twist when revealing that one character is a more ancient version of the villain.
- Breakthrough Hit: While Zombie Powder was Kubo's first in his native country, it was Bleach that skyrocketed his popularity worldwide.
- Continuity Nod: Burn The Witch is revealed to be in the same universe as Bleach when the arch at the beginning is restored, revealing the full logo to be SSWB, or Soul Society West Branch.
- Cosplay: After the ending of Bleach, Kubo re-surfaced in November in a cosplay of Mayuri Kurotsuchi, fully affirming his below-mentioned fashion design talent.
- Costume Porn: Kubo has stated that his real desire is to become either a fashion designer or an architect. He also stated he gave Shinigami kimono because he wanted gorgeously billowing sleeves. He makes his characters very fashion conscious as a result, and does lots of artwork for volumes and chapters displaying characters in a range of fashionable modern clothing.
- Creative Differences: According to this interview he wasn't exactly happy with the changes made to the Bleach anime. He says that at some point the differences between manga and anime were so great, he got "stomach aches"; so he pretty much demanded to be sent the scripts so he could correct them. Unsurprisingly, the director of the Bleach anime was Noriyuki Abe, said to have had similar problems with Yoshihiro Togashi over the animated adaptation of YuYu Hakusho.
- Creator Breakdown: Kubo has stated that he's had at least two of these:
- His first manga Zombiepowder. only lasted four volumes due to low sales. In a veiled reference on the inside cover of the final volume, Kubo acknowledged a nervous breakdown also contributed to its cancellation.
- Some months after the end of Bleach, he revealed on Twitter that the tenth year of publishing was incredibly hard on him due to stress and bad health. Then a letter gave him his spirits back - it was from a deceased 10-year-old Ill Boy, whose Last Request was to have an anonymous letter with encouraging words given to him after his death. At the end of the reveal, Kubo asked for leads about the boy's family's whereabouts, intending to find them. (And around a year later, he did.)
- Ham-to-Ham Combat: Kubo admitted he struggles to write fights in a serious way and can only do it by involving jokes along the way. Many characters therefore ramp up the ham during battles. Only the most important battles lack any humour to showcase just how significant they are.
- It Is Pronounced "Tro-PAY": Kubo's made-up non-Japanese names can be very confusing to read and hard to pronounce and aren't necessarily the most obvious pronunciation. Kubo's very name is also an example of this trope: "Tite" is pronounced as "tight," not "TEE-teh" as is commonly interpreted.
- Loads and Loads of Characters: One of Kubo's methods for dealing with writers' block is to create new characters. However, Bleach is based on military units, armies and organisations. As a result, he doesn't simply design one or two characters, he designs many. The Shinigami are an organisation of thousands, split into thirteen divisions, and there are at least two or three developed characters per division. The Arrancar consist of more than ten Espada with multiple subordinates. The Quincies have an entire army of characters and even the Fullbringers are an organisation of six people. That's ignoring Ichigo's classmates and the Royal Guard. The characters very quickly stack up.
- Psychological Horror: Has dabbled occasionally in this, which the fans have praised. The biggest examples take place in the X-Cution arc (when Tsukishima mind rapes Ichigo's friends and family to pit them against him) and the Thousand Years Blood War (with As Nods first mind-raping, then almost murdering Byakuya).
- Teen Genius: According to this interview, Kubo only started taking illustration and manga seriously when he was a teenager. However, when he was still in school, his artwork caught the eye of the Shueisha editors. The rest is history.