|Manga||Volume #28, Chapter #247|
|Anime||Naruto Shippūden Episode #2|
|Novel||Akatsuki Hiden: Evil Flowers in Full Bloom|
|Movie||Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie|
|Game||Naruto Shippūden: Gekitō Ninja Taisen! EX 2|
|OVA||Naruto Shippūden: UNSG anime cutscenes|
|Appears in||Anime, Manga, Novel, Game, Movie|
|Academy Grad. Age||7|
|Chūnin Prom. Age||8|
Sasori (サソリ, Sasori), also known as Sasori of the Red Sand (赤砂のサソリ, Akasuna no Sasori), was an S-rank missing-nin from Sunagakure's Puppet Brigade and a member of Akatsuki, where he was partnered with Orochimaru and later, Deidara.
When Sasori was young, his father and mother were killed by Sakumo Hatake in battle, leaving him in the care of his grandmother, Chiyo. When Chiyo attempted to cheer him up by teaching him puppetry at age five, Sasori's innate aptitude for the art became apparent, and he even began to devise masterful ways of eliminating a puppet master's weaknesses in battle. His skills even allowed him to create two puppets in the image of his parents in an attempt to discard the terrible loneliness he felt. However, as the puppets were unable to give him the real parental love that he desired, Sasori lost interest in them, and they later fell into Chiyo's possession. Sasori created many other ingenious puppets, including Black Ant, Crow, and Salamander, which were later owned by Kankurō. During the Third Shinobi World War, the effectiveness of his puppets in spilling enemies' blood on the sand gave rise to Sasori's moniker Sasori of the Red Sand. However, motivated by his desire to make works that last forever, Sasori began experimenting to create puppets out of people.
Twenty years before his introduction in the series, Sasori left Sunagakure at age fifteen after he secretly kidnapped the Third Kazekage and made him into one of his human puppets. Sasori also transferred his heart into a puppet body modelled after himself to increase his own offensive capabilities and prolong his life. Some time after leaving the village, Sasori joined the Akatsuki and utilised his skills to create numerous spies like Yūra and Mukade in many nations as sleeper agents. Prior to being partnered with Deidara, Sasori was paired with Orochimaru, who shared his desire of an everlasting existence. However, when Orochimaru left the Akatsuki after his failed attempt to take Itachi Uchiha's body, Sasori bore a grudge towards his former partner and sent Kabuto Yakushi to be his spy in Otogakure. Nevertheless, Sasori was unaware that Kabuto was working for Orochimaru long before he posed as an Akatsuki spy, with him and the rest of the Akatsuki made to think that Kabuto joined Orochimaru's side after being dispelled of Sasori's brainwashing.
Sasori grew up in a sad and lonely environment due to the absence of parental love. When introduced to the art of puppetry by his grandmother, Chiyo, he grew a little happier. He eventually created puppets in the likeness of his parents, but when he realised that the puppets couldn't give him the actual love that he desired, he became cold and aloof. This led to his maintaining little regard for human life. Sasori even went so far as to state that he would feel nothing if Chiyo died, as he claimed that his heart had become like his puppet body: without any emotions. Despite his cruel and nihilistic nature, Sasori was also known to possess a very down-to-earth outlook on life, rarely getting worked up over obstacles that impeded his way. He rarely gave way to any strong emotions, and such instances that happened were often short-lived.
Sasori was also known for his impatience, as he repeatedly noted that he did not wish to wait or keep others waiting. Despite this, he took his time in battling Kankurō when they first met due to his interest in fighting his old creations, handed down to a puppet master of the next generation.
Sasori and his second partner in Akatsuki, Deidara, both had conflicting views on art, and they frequently argued about their differing perspectives. Deidara maintained his belief that art was something transient that departs quickly, where as Sasori believed that fine art was everlasting and remained far into the future. This reflected their individual natures; Deidara made clay sculptures which exploded, while Sasori created long-lasting puppets out of humans that never died. Nevertheless, although Deidara outwardly seemed to respect Sasori's beliefs, Sasori never respected Deidara's.
Sasori's ambition was to become an exquisite piece of art himself by turning his body into one of his own puppet works. Sasori adhered so strongly to his belief that true art was ever-lasting that he even went as far as to have his spy, retrieve information on the Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation and human experiments. Sasori abandoned this ambition after Kankurō told him that it was his creations that he put his heart and soul into that would last forever. After accepting Kankurō's view on eternal art, he entrusted his Mother and Father puppets to Kankurō and told him to pass them on to the next generation after he dies. In this moment, Sasori is shown to have an emotional side as well.
Sasori was also willing to accept the views of others on certain topics in contrast to Deidara, who stubbornly stood by his beliefs until the end. Sasori spared Kankurō during their first confrontation after the latter made a last attempt to attack him, but he notes that Kankurō's envenomed state would eventually lead to his death.
Without puppet armour, Sasori maintained the appearance of a teenage boy with wide brown eyes which he inherited from his mother, and short, red hair which he inherited from his father. As a child, Sasori wore dark green robes with a pale jacket around them. As an adult, he was mostly seen in his Akatsuki robe. Sasori's puppet form consisted of a pair of spinning claws attached to his lower back, a holder for four scrolls on his back, a stinger in the empty and open stomach cavity, a compartment in his right chest, and a 'core of living flesh' (生身の核, namami no kaku) in the left which had the kanji for "Scorpion" (蠍, Sasori) painted on it. In his exposed state, Sasori's eyes would also be wide open in a maniacal way, as opposed to his normal calm looking eyes.
Sasori wore his Akatsuki ring on his left thumb. The ring bears the kanji for jewel or sphere (玉, gyoku). He also wore teal nail polish. Even though Sasori possessed a headband from Sunagakure that was slashed out in the middle, he never physically wore it, but instead kept it on his person.
Sasori was an extremely powerful shinobi and a highly analytical and cunning man. Sasori's use of his puppets was greatly feared throughout the Third Shinobi World War as he turned the sand red with blood, giving him the nickname, "Sasori of the Red Sand". Sasori's abilities also gave him the power to defeat and kill the Third Kazekage, who was said to be the strongest ninja in the history of Sunagakure, though Sasori states that he had some trouble defeating him. Deidara himself even admitted that Sasori was the stronger of the two.
Trained by his powerful grandmother, Chiyo, in the art of puppetry, Sasori was an extremely powerful puppeteer and had great skill in creating and controlling his puppets. He created a number of ingenious ones including the three main puppets that Kankurō uses, which were made in Sunagakure before he fled. At the time of the battle that led to his death, Sasori had 298 human puppets in his collection. His status as a puppet master offered him a tremendous advantage against other puppeteer shinobi, especially if the puppets they were using happened to be ones that he created, as seen in his battle against Kankurō. As puppets are usually installed with long-range weapons, Sasori was an expert at fighting at long distances. Sasori can also control living people as puppets, even against their will, if they are weakened enough. His usage of puppets was at such a high level that he made mere techniques appear as an artistic performance, what he called his "Red Secret Technique".
Main article: Hiruko
Hiruko was the first puppet to be shown being used by Sasori in the series, as both a weapon and an armour, and as a means to eliminate the puppeteer's weakness of being a separate and exposed target. As Hiruko was one of his favourite puppets, Sasori adorned it in Akatsuki attire for nearly the entirety of his tenure in the organisation. Because of this, only senior members like Orochimaru or relatives like Chiyo knew Sasori's true face while others like Zetsu and Kabuto had no idea that Hiruko was not his actual body. While within Hiruko, Sasori speaks through his puppet in a deeper and hoarser voice.
Hiruko had a long mechanical, scorpion-like tail (an allusion to Sasori's name meaning "scorpion"), extending from the mouth of what appeared to be a demon mask on its back. Chiyo said this mask was a recent addition by Sasori to act as an extra defence to a weak point in the puppet. The tail worked as Hiruko's main offensive weapon and was laced with Sasori's specialty poison. The tail could also be used defensively by spinning around Hiruko's body at a rapid speed. Hiruko's left arm was also rigged with a projectile launcher capable of firing poisoned shrapnel and needles, and its mouth could also be used to serve a similar function of firing poisoned needles.
Hiruko is said to have been a human puppet in the anime from a once famous Sunagakure shinobi that Sasori converted upon death. In the manga it was just a regular puppet.
Main article: Human Puppet Sasori's puppets were unique in that they were made from the still-living bodies of humans. These human puppets were more versatile than regular puppets, since, in addition to having many dangerous devices installed within them (as is common with regular puppets), they were also able to use chakra and perform any techniques or kekkei genkai abilities that they possessed during their life.
Main article: Third Kazekage (puppet)
Sasori's favourite human puppet was the Third Kazekage, which retained its Magnet Release, which in turn grants Sasori access to the Iron Sand techniques. When mixed with Sasori's poison, the Iron Sand was given a more lethal edge. The Iron Sand could also be used to fill up the joints of other puppets, thus immobilising them. Due to the Iron Sand being derived from the Third's ability to convert chakra to magnetism, this grants Sasori immunity from metallic weapons. The Third's puppet's right arm held several poisoned blades, while the left arm could open up to reveal several summoning seals that summoned thousands of similar arms to attack the target. These arms were capable of crushing an opponent, emitting poisonous gas clouds, and releasing wires that dragged the opponent into the gas cloud. If these arms were cut off, a small buzz-saw took their place.
Main article: Scorpion
Although Sasori was thirty-five years old, he maintained the appearance of a teenage boy. His unnaturally young appearance was a product of the immortalisation of his design. Aside from his core, Sasori's body was actually a puppet. In place of his intestines was a thick cable coiled around a pole, allowing him to use it as a stinger and retract it if necessary. Attached to his back was a scroll holder, containing four scrolls that stored extra armament. The first scroll allowed him to expel powerful streams of fire, and the second scroll was used to store numerous puppets for the Red Secret Technique: Performance of a Hundred Puppets. The capabilities of the third and fourth scrolls were not revealed in the manga, though in the anime, the fourth scroll was used to fire jets of water with enough force to cut through rock. Sasori also has a pair of poles attached to the back of his hips, each equipped with five large blades that could spin like a propeller, granting him both an equipage for greater speed and a monstrous close combat weapon. Sasori also had pipes on each of his palms that could spew out intense fire, hot enough to melt rock, or, in the anime, powerful water jets with such pressure that they were capable of cutting through rock. Being a fully-armed puppet himself, Sasori did not suffer the weakness of being vulnerable to close-range combat that other puppeteers suffer.
Despite being loaded with weapons, Sasori kept them (and his true form) hidden within his Akatsuki robes, which were large enough to conceal them without problem. Curiously, when using "himself", Sasori's eyes were always wide open, giving him a somewhat insane look. In contrast, prior to revealing his puppet body, Sasori's eyes were always half-closed, making him appear calmer and more aloof. Sasori has claimed that he has not used "himself" since joining Akatsuki, until his last battle with his grandmother and Sakura Haruno.
Installed in the right part of Sasori's chest was a mechanism that could spin numerous Chakra Threads, allowing him to use his Red Secret Technique: Performance of a Hundred Puppets. With it, Sasori was given a drastic advantage over other puppeteers, such that he claimed to have taken down an entire nation with it. The left part of Sasori's chest held the lone human part of him and thus, the only necessary part of his body capable of controlling chakra: a cylinder-shaped device containing his 'core' (核, kaku).
Because Sasori's core was the only living part of his body that he still contained, his puppet body was virtually indestructible, allowing him to survive the poison mist Kankurō bombarded him with, as well as the impact from Sakura's punches. He was also able to fight for extended periods of time without hindrances that would normally affect a human's body, such as fatigue, muscle failure, loss of blood, wounds, or pain. When smashed apart, he could simply draw the pieces back together. Additionally, Sasori could transfer his core to other puppets in a split second, allowing him to abandon a body that was damaged beyond repair or incapacitated. It is suggested in the manga that Sasori created more than one puppet body in his image. The core was his only weakness, and its destruction would mean his death. After Sasori's death, Kankurō would later take the body and use it as his puppet.
Repeatedly, Sasori has demonstrated to be a highly cunning ninja, able to handle situations with various traps and misdirection. He is also shown to be a highly analytical man, able to quickly determine his opponent's strengths and combat methods. Like his grandmother, Sasori has a great knowledge of the human body, as shown from his brainwashing technique and his mastery over creating different types of poisons. His unique poisons, that he laced nearly every weapon in his arsenal with, took effect instantly, and one such poison could kill the target after three days of suffering; according to Sakura, this poison is refined with heavy metals, which intrude the muscles and destroy healthy cells. This poison was so complex that Sasori himself acknowledged that no one in Sunagakure could counter it and believed its complexity made it incurable altogether. However, to his surprise, Sakura came up with a successful antidote for the poison; Sasori even noted that creating the antidote requires extreme precision, with no room for failure, something difficult even for himself.
Sasuke Retrieval Arc
At the end of Part I, Sasori made a cameo appearance as a silhouette during the Akatsuki gathering where they discussed Orochimaru's taking of Sasuke Uchiha, as well as the capturing of the Nine-Tails and the furthering of their plans.
Kazekage Rescue Arc
At the start of Part II, Sasori, hidden in his puppet, Hiruko, returned to his former village, Sunagakure, with Deidara to capture the One-Tailed Shukaku's jinchūriki, and the Fifth Kazekage, Gaara. Both the Akatsuki members easily penetrated Suna's defences, as the village was betrayed by one of Sasori's own subordinates, Yūra. After Deidara captured Gaara, the Kazekage's elder brother, Kankurō, attempted to stop the Akatsuki duo from fleeing. But Sasori confronted him so that Deidara could go on ahead unopposed and made quick work of Kankurō, poisoning and nearly killing him, and easily destroying his puppets, as he had pre-existing knowledge of their secrets. After the Akatsuki members extracted and sealed the One-Tailed Shukaku from Gaara at the Akatsuki hideout, Sasori and Deidara were left in charge by their leader of defeating the pursuing Team 7 and Sasori's grandmother, Chiyo. As Deidara led Naruto Uzumaki and Kakashi Hatake away using Gaara's dead body as bait, Sasori was left to face Sakura Haruno and his grandmother Chiyo.
Soon after the battle began, with Chiyo controlling her as a puppet, Sakura was able to destroy Sasori's puppet, Hiruko. As Sasori emerged from Hiruko's remains and revealed his true self, Chiyo and Sakura were shocked to see his youthful face, considering that he had left Sunagakure over twenty years ago. Not wasting any time, however, Sasori brought out his Third Kazekage puppet, who he revealed to be his favourite, as the Third was the hardest to kill and add to his collection. Since the Third Kazekage was a human puppet, Sasori was able use its various Iron Sand abilities to attack and overwhelm Chiyo and Sakura. To try and combat the Kazekage, Chiyo brought out the first puppets Sasori ever created Mother and Father. Although Chiyo had since equipped them with extra weapons and defences, the Kazekage's puppet's Iron Sand quickly disabled the two puppets, and Chiyo's arm as well. Acting on her own, Sakura demolished the Kazekage puppet after picking up on its movements and using herself as bait to lower Sasori's guard.
With the loss of the Kazekage puppet, Sasori revealed the reason behind his eternal youth: his own human puppet body, which itself was fitted with numerous weapons and traps laced with poison. Sakura eventually managed to break apart his puppet body, but missed his core, allowing him to reassemble himself. Chiyo then brought out her own ten puppets in an attempt to level the playing field. Sasori used his Red Secret Technique: Performance of a Hundred Puppets, allowing him to control ten times as many puppets as Chiyo. Since Chiyo's puppets were designed to work together, a trait lacking with all of Sasori's puppets, her puppets fared far better than his, although they were eventually overwhelmed by Sasori's sheer numbers. During the battle, Chiyo attempted to seal Sasori's chakra with a special orb from one of her puppets, but missed his core — the only living part of his body and the source of his chakra — and only trapped his puppet body. As Chiyo and Sakura were distracted by his summoned puppets, Sasori was revealed to have transferred the cylindrical container housing his core, into another one of his own puppets, possessing his face's likeness, before the seal nailed his original body to a wall.
Using the seal as a distraction, Sasori, in his new puppet body, attempted a sneak attack on Chiyo. However, Sakura took the sword's attack from Sasori for Chiyo. Sasori's katana pierced Sakura's abdomen, and since the blade itself was coated in poison, Sasori stated that she would either succumb to the poison or bleed to death. As Sasori prepared to attack again, it gave Chiyo a chance to use Mother and Father to stab him through his core in the form of an embrace. As Chiyo ran to Sakura's almost lifeless body, she began to try and heal her, to which Sasori, even in his dying state, laughed in amusement at her seemingly senile attempt to save Sakura, stating that it was far too late for any form of medical ninjutsu. When Chiyo revealed the true nature of her technique, Sasori believed it impossible until Sakura awoke.
Before dying, as a reward to Sakura for defeating him, Sasori informed her of a spy that he had within his former Akatsuki partner, Orochimaru's, ranks, and told her to meet him ten days from then at noon at the Tenchi Bridge. When Sasori died, Chiyo implied that Sasori could have avoided her last attack, but he deliberately allowed himself to be killed. Thus, it appeared as if Sasori chose to die in the loving embrace of his "parents" rather than kill his grandmother.
In the anime, Sasori is summoned by Kabuto to battle Team Kakashi, who are investigating the massacre that he brought about in The Hole. Quickly after being summoned, Sasori's coffin vanishes with Kabuto questioning if the Impure World Reincarnation is incomplete.
Confining the Jinchūriki Arc
In an attempt to both impede Tobi and coerce him into joining forces during their initial encounter, Kabuto Yakushi demonstrated his capabilities by reincarnating many of the deceased members of Akatsuki, including Sasori, using Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation.
Shinobi World War Arc
Assigned to the Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon, Sasori is tasked with disrupting the Allied Shinobi Forces by raiding the enemy, as the Fourth Shinobi World War commences. After discerning that Akatsuki had fallen with only Zetsu and his replacement, Tobi remaining, their group mobilises atop Deidara's clay birds, where they pursue the three remaining members of the Infiltration and Reconnaissance Party.
Irritated by the adversaries scurrying about as they attempt to hide, the group is eventually taken captive nonetheless. Sasori then forcefully manipulates the booby-trapped Muta Aburame, so as to attack the opposing Surprise Attack Division, taking Zaji hostage. However, the enemy uncovers the trap and evades the blast, forcing him to engage them using the controlled Tokuma and Ranka, but Omoi soon manages to free them both. After Kankurō connects his own chakra threads to those of Sasori's, which had just been severed, the latter is pulled downwards, causing him to collide with the rising Deidara. He compliments Kankurō's improvement and later remarks that he had obtained the immortal body he had always desired, upon seeing the former reveal his old body. Sasori then assists Shin in avoiding Omoi and Kankurō's attacks, before Deidara detonates the clay placed inside of Shin.
Explaining his knowledge of Root, he stated that their ideals to become emotionless were similar to his own, whilst Shin reforms. However, struck from behind by Sai's attack, both he and Deidara are then contained by Kankurō's puppets. As Shin reverts to dust, after his soul is set free, Sasori notes that he couldn't feel any response from his threads. When Kankurō explains that his strength comes from his soul and not in spite of it, as he poured his heart and soul into his creations, Sasori emotionally accepts that his puppets and techniques were what immortalised him. Starting to crumble into ash, he entrusts his Mother and Father puppets to Kankurō, telling him to pass them down to future generations. With his soul freed, only a pile of earth and the corpse of an unknown individual, used as part of the ritual, remained.
At the time of his death, Sasori had not yet captured his assigned tailed beast. A short dialogue between himself and Deidara suggested that Sasori did not even know what beast he had been assigned to target. However, after his death, Tobi took his place as Deidara's new partner and his ring in Akatsuki, and, later, he captured the Three-Tails, thereby suggesting that the beast was Sasori's target.
However, due to the preservation of his body, Sasori's influence on future events was not over with his death. Prior to the events at the Five Kage Summit, Kankurō recovered Sasori's body to replace his usual puppets. It seems that some modifications have been made to his body since Sasori's death, although it is unknown if certain mechanisms were previously installed, but were not shown prior to Sasori's death. Using Scorpion to fight the reincarnated Sasori, Kankurō manages to give Sasori closure by stating he achieved his immortality through all the puppets he made.
Sasori is a playable character in the following video games:
- Sasori (蠍) means "scorpion".
- Sasori had the same birth date as Masashi Kishimoto.
- Additionally, his birth date (November 8) makes Sasori's Western astrological sign Scorpio, the scorpion. His full alias of the Red Sand in addition may carry connotations directed to the planet Mars, traditional ruler of the sign.
- According to the databook(s):
- His hobby was remodelling his puppet collection.
- Sasori wished to fight Monzaemon Chikamatsu.
- Sasori doesn't need food.
- Sasori had completed 72 official missions in total: 5 D-rank, 12 C-rank, 16 B-rank, 29 A-rank, 10 S-rank.
- Sasori's favourite phrase was "Eternal beauty" (永久の美, Eikyū no Utsukushī).
- Sasori had one of the longest battle times in the anime (8 full episodes), giving him roughly about 3 hours of battle screen-time.
- In the first poll he was in (the 6th overall poll), he placed 6th on the list. In the second poll, he placed 8th.
- Sasori made a brief appearance in the Naruto: Shippūden episode 129 omake, walking past Sakura Haruno and Naruto Uzumaki in a festival, glancing at the former.
- Most of Sasori's puppets wore the same clothing: a black cloak with a ruffled collar except his puppets that were used in the Red Secret Technique: Performance of a Hundred Puppets technique: their cloaks were red. Also, Hiruko and Sasori were donned in the Akatsuki robes instead.
- (To Kankurō) " Since I don't like to wait or make people wait… I'll end this quickly."
- (To Kankurō) "For my name to be known all the way down to a kid like you… is an honour."
- (To Deidara) "What? You call those explosions fine art? Fine art is something wonderful that's left long into the future… eternal beauty."
- (About Chiyo) "Great puppet masters think alike, I suppose."
- (To Chiyo) "That is a considerable amount of puppets. But… [Proceeds to summon one hundred puppets of his own] With this, I took down a whole nation!"
- (About Chiyo and Sakura) "How'll I explain this… How long it took me to take down a little girl and an old hag… That I even had to use my last trick…"
- "Women like to do useless things don't they… Even connected by blood ties as we are, I won't feel a thing if grandma dies here. My heart… is just like this body…"
- (To Sakura) "Want to try to become like this too? If you do then you'll probably get what I'm saying. A body that does not decay… a puppet body can be rebuilt over and over… unfettered by a mortal lifespan."
- (To Sakura) "I would describe myself as a human being who could not become a complete puppet, I am an unfinished puppet, whose lifeless frame still contains a beating heart at its core. I am neither dead, nor am I alive."
- (Upon seeing Kankurō using his puppet body) "My old puppet body… Suddenly it all seems so pointless. I now have the body I've always desired, one that will never rot or decay. I've truly become a puppet in every sense of the word."
- (To Kankurō) "Kankurō… I want you to have my "Mother" and "Father" puppets as well… and when you die, pass them both on… to the next generation."