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Third Raikage

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Raikage3

(三代目雷影, Sandaime Raikage)
Debut
Manga Chapter #494
Anime Naruto Shippūden Episode #244
Game Naruto Shippūden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3
Appears in Anime, Manga and Game
Voice Actors
Japanese
English
Personal
Gender Gender Male Male
Status Deceased
Occupation
Affiliation
Team
Rank
Ninja Rank
Family

Nature Type
Jutsu

Tools

The Third Raikage (三代目雷影, Sandaime Raikage; Literally meaning "Third Lightning Shadow") was the leader of Kumogakure thirty years prior to the Fourth Shinobi World War.

Background

Raikage hurt
The Third wounds himself.

The Third's rule was punctuated by the berserk attacks of the Eight-Tails but as Kumogakure couldn't afford to dispose of such a valuable war deterrent, he was forced to look for a suitable jinchūriki in quick succession, after the conclusion of each rampage. During one of these attacks, the Third fought the Eight-Tails alone, allowing his comrades to escape. Their battle resulted in the Raikage receiving a self-inflicted wound to the chest after he collapsed upon his own hand, which became his life's shame.[1][2] Since this event, he made it a personal duty to combat the Eight-Tails whenever its jinchūriki lost control, with even his son eventually becoming part of the group that supported him during these occurrences. He chose to seal the Eight-Tails in the Kohaku no Jōhei, resulting in his nephew's death, hoping that someone else would have more success in controlling it.[3]

Between these attacks, the Third held try-outs along with Dodai in order to search for a tag-team partner for his son, which was a long-standing tradition for the Raikage. As the exercise was seemingly going to end in failure again, he lamented the fact that this would have been unnecessary if A had an actual brother. After seeing the dummy's head finally fall off, he looks on at B and his son, glad that they had finally found a suitable candidate. Ultimately, when Killer B was made the jinchūriki, the Eight-Tails' rampages were at long last brought to an end.[4]

RaikageVSArmy
The Raikage faces off against ten thousand shinobi alone.

At some point he also mentored Darui, passing the secrets of the Black Lightning technique down to just him.[5] In his later years, he once faced an opposing force of ten thousand shinobi single-handedly for three consecutive days and nights, in order to allow his comrades to escape to safety.[6] He eventually died as a result of this encounter and with his death, the position of Raikage was passed onto his son, A.[7] He would however become renowned for his extraordinary level of durability, endurance, and strength above all else, to the point where his body itself would become reputed as the "strongest shield" (最強の盾, saikyō no tate).[8]

Personality

The Third Raikage is a calm and seemingly level-headed person. He is also a man of honour as seen when he became outraged when tells Ōnoki to take advantage of the Allied Shinobi Forces after it is disbanded. He is also a very proud and caring individual who will readily use himself as a shield or "go-between" to protect his comrades. This was also exemplified when it was revealed that after he received a scar from fighting the Eight-Tails, not even his son asked him about it in detail, out of his respect for his father's pride.

He, like the other Kage, was upset that he has to fight people from his own village but at the same time he had a lot of confidence and believed that the new generation would be able to surpass and defeat them. He cared greatly for the people of his village, as he made it a personal responsibility to subdue the Eight-Tails whenever it would go on a rampage, as well as fought against ten thousand enemies single-handedly just to allow his comrades to escape to safety.[6] The Third also greatly admires ninja who are very skilled as seen when he congratulated the Fourth Kazekage for having such a strong son.[9]

Appearance

3rd Raikage Lightning Armour
The Third Raikage clad in Lightning Release Armour.

The Third Raikage was a tall, dark-skinned man with a largely muscular and well-defined built. He had upper-back length hair and a shoulder-length full beard. He had unusual eyes which had green-coloured irides, dark sclera and no pupils. His face has pronounced cheekbones and tear troughs under his eyes, and a prominent crease across his forehead with a mole above his right eyebrow. His top lip also had a darker pigmentation than the bottom one. His canine teeth were also slightly elongated. He has the kanji for "lightning" (雷, kaminari) tattooed on his right shoulder. Following a battle with the Eight-Tails, the Third Raikage also gained lightning bolt shaped scar that runs across the right side of his chest.

His typical attire consisted of Kumogakure's distinctive single shoulder-strap flak jacket with no other clothing underneath, a forehead protector that he wore like a bandanna and a thick rope tied around his waist. It was also shown that at some point in the past, he wore bandages on his forearms.

Abilities

RaikageVSGyuki
The Third takes on Gyūki single-handedly.

The Third was undoubtedly an immensely powerful shinobi and is recognised as the greatest Raikage that Kumogakure has ever seen.[10]

Chakra Prowess and Stamina

Much like his son, the Third Raikage was gifted with enormous chakra reserves. With them, he was able to use the Kohaku no Jōhei to seal Gyūki each time the beast went berserk during his time. He was able to single-handedly delay an entire army consisting of ten thousand shinobi for three consecutive days and nights before finally collapsing — something normal shinobi could only achieve with drug enhancers.[6] He was also said to be the only ninja capable of directly going up against a tailed beast alone, as even Gyūki commented that he was a very tough and resilient man.[11]

Taijutsu

Raikage dodging Rasenshuriken
The Third dodging the Rasenshuriken.

The Third was said to possess great strength, with the threat of a single punch he was able to prompt Dodai to encase Naruto Uzumaki as a protective measure. Even more impressive is the fact that the Third was able to launch the ball several metres away and crashing through solid rock.[12]

The Third was also said to possess great speed, he was fast enough to dodge Naruto's Wind Release: Rasenshuriken twice, despite the technique's immense speed, and also being half blinded by the sun the first time, which gave him less time to dodge the actual attack.[13] He was also able to kill dozens of ninja in an instant using his Hell Stab technique.[14] Naruto even noted that his speed was on par with that of his son's.[15]

Even more impressive, he was renowned for his tremendous level of durability so much so that his body gained the name the "strongest shield" (最強の盾, saikyō no tate) because it could withstand any type of technique.[8] The only attack that was strong enough to injure him was his own, which resulted in the scar on his chest. A true testament to his resilience was seen from how he survived a direct impact of a Rasenshuriken while Naruto was in his Nine-Tails Chakra Mode with little to no damage despite his Lightning Release Armour being neutralised.[16][17] With this trait, he was the only person of this time capable of being transported by the Heavenly Transfer Technique without being torn to shreds because of his tough body.[18] He also had equally immense reserves of stamina and endurance, able to fend off ten thousand shinobi single-handedly for three consecutive days and nights before finally collapsing[6] and battle the Eight-Tails to the point that they both collapsed from exhaustion.[19]

Ninjutsu

Nature Transformation

Jigokuzuki Yohon
The Raikage's Hell Stab: Four–Finger Nukite technique.

The Third was a very powerful Lightning Release user, known for using his unique Black Lightning, which he passed on to Darui. Like his son he is also capable of using the Lightning Release Armour. Similar to the Chidori he can focus his lightning chakra into his fingers, creating a strong piercing effect and can make the piercing effect even more powerful by focusing the lightning chakra by reducing the number of fingers used. Its sharp enough to even penetrate and slash through rubber despite its resistance to electricity. Dodai states that it is his strongest ninjutsu referring to it as the "strongest spear" (最強の矛, saikyō no hoko). With this power he could cut off all the tails of the Eight-Tails at once, and even pierce his own body.

According to Dodai, only powerful, long-range Wind Release attacks could harm him,[20] but due to his immense durability, the damage he would take was only minor.[21]

Part II

Shinobi World War Arc

Kage Reincarnated
Third Raikage and the other reincarnated Kage.

In preparation for the Fourth Shinobi World War, the Third Raikage was reincarnated by Kabuto Yakushi alongside other deceased Kage, to fight against the Allied Shinobi Forces.

When , despite his camouflage, was detected approaching the Fourth Division, Kabuto had the Tsuchikage summon three other Kage to provide support. Amongst their numbers was a bemused Third Raikage, who questions the others about his present location, before seemingly recognising the Fourth Kazekage. During a later argument between the Second Mizukage and Second Tsuchikage, the Third expressed his disappointment in being unable to fight all three of them, due to the influence of the wretched ability used to reincarnate him and the control it held over him.

Pursuing the retreating division throughout the night, each of the Kage lamented the possibility of opposing shinobi from their own respective village yet only the Third Raikage remained optimistic that the current generation had surpassed them since their deaths. Confronted by an enormous wave of sand that is halted by the Fourth Kazekage, he correctly identifies the former as the individual who could manipulate Gold Dust, a capability that saved him once again but from the clutches of Gaara's arms of sand. Complementing the Fourth, he told him that his son was an excellent shinobi, and later chastised Mū when he advised Ōnoki to assure Iwagakure's dominance by taking advantage of the alliance's eventual disbandment. As the battle recommenced after he implored the opposition to stop them, the Third and the others attempted to encircle Gaara while protected from his Sand Hail, but is instead restrained by the embrace of the latter's sand.

Mizukage summoning
The Mizukage and Raikage face off against the shinobi of the Fourth Division.

Observing the Fourth Kazekage being sealed, his Lightning Release Armour activates involuntarily to this threat and destroys the sealing tag, to which he told the Second Mizukage that their bodies had been programmed to automatically respond to enemy attacks. Freed from their bonds, the two stormed the approaching division, before beginning to divulge the particulars of their abilities. Identifying himself as a Lightning Release user, the Third instructed the opposition to have their Earth Release shinobi construct defences, while those with Wind Release attacked him relentlessly.[22]

As numerous shinobi converged on him, Temari along with several others appeared to successfully cut the Third into several pieces using the Wind Release: Cast Net technique, before directing the Sealing Team to bind him immediately. However, her efforts proved to ultimately be ineffective, as the Third was able to regenerate before the Sealing Team could take action. While the opposition reformulated their strategy, the Third spotted Dodai amongst them, and called out to him. Dodai proceeded to inform Temari that more powerful wind release techniques were required in order to to contest the Raikage's legendary durability. As the nature of his death was disclosed, Kabuto took the opportunity to erase the Third's personality to buy himself more time, just as Naruto Uzumaki's clone made his appearance on the battlefield.

Naruto vs 3rd Raikage
The Third faces off with Naruto.

Despite utilising the sun to obscure his attack, Naruto's first few attempts failed to connect with the Raikage, due to his enhanced reflexes and speed which allowed him to evade the attack twice. However, on the third attempt, he was unable to avoid the attack and was instead caught at the very centre of the sphere, but even the damage inflicted by this proved to be minimal and the Third once again, quickly recovered before he could be bound. Advancing upon the stunned opposition whilst activating his Hell Stab technique, the allied forces hastily constructed several reinforced defences in response, yet the attack penetrates both with considerable ease.

RaikageVSASF
The Third breaks through the reinforced defences to confront the Fourth Division shinobi.

Emerging from the other side only to be ambushed by a onslaught of shinobi, who presumed that the element of surprise would be enough, the Third proceeds to quickly defeat them before engaging the rest of the division. Destroying the cliff where Dodai and Naruto had sought refuge, the Raikage folded his fist in preparation to incapacitate the falling Naruto with a punch but thanks to Dodai's intervention, he punched a rubber ball instead. Believing that Naruto had been encased within the ball, which had been sent bouncing away by his prior strike, the Third gave chase to it. However, after he caught up with, and slicing the ball in two, he realised that it was empty and so, changed direction in order to pursue Naruto.

Mujun
The Third Raikage impales himself during his battle with Naruto.

Reducing the number of fingers used in his Hell Stab technique to just one as he advanced, the Third's attack is dodged by Naruto using the enhanced reflexes and sensory abilities granted by Sage Mode and parried with a Rasengan, aimed at the Raikage's left arm. The force of the blow caused the Third to impale himself with his own attack and as his body began to crumble, the Sealing Team took immediate action and completed his imprisonment. Later, with the release of the Impure World Reincarnation technique, a light of sorts encased the Third Raikage's sealed body as the technique was dispelled and his soul was returned to the afterlife.

Trivia

  • The concept behind the Third Raikage's possession of both the "strongest spear" (最強の矛, saikyō no hoko) and the "strongest shield" (最強の盾, saikyō no tate) was adapted from an anecdote found within the book Han Feizi, written by Han Fei, illustrating a contradiction relating to the Irresistible Force Paradox. The story goes as follows:
"There was a man in Chu who sold shields and halberds. Praising them he said: "My shields are so strong that nothing can pierce them." And praising the halberds he said: "My halberds are so strong that there is nothing that they cannot pierce." A person asked: "What if someone pierces your shields with your halberds?" He could not respond."
  • In chapter 554 when the Third is referred to as the "greatest Raikage", the word used for the Raikage's description (最豪) can mean anything from 'greatest' to 'strongest' to 'manliest'.
  • When the Third Raikage tells the allied troops about his abilities, he says, "I'm a Lightning Release user! Place your Earth Release users on the front row and attack me incessantly!!" (「ワシ雷遁を使う!土遁の忍を前列に置きワシを攻めたてろ!!」, "Washi Raiton o tsukau! Doton no shinobi o zenretsu ni oki washi o seme tatero!!").[22] In the tankōbon version, this is changed into, "I'm a Lightning Release user! Place your Earth Release users in the front row to create shields, while your Wind Release users attack me incessantly!!" (「ワシ雷遁を使う!土遁の忍を前列に置き盾を作りつつ風遁の忍で攻めたてろ!!」, "Washi Raiton o tsukau! Doton no shinobi o zenretsu ni oki tatsu o tsukuri tsutsu Fūton no shinobi de seme tatero!!").[23]

Quotes

  • (To the other Kage) "It's not as tragic as you make it out to be. I have faith that the kids of all our villages have grown up to surpass us."[24]

References

  1. Naruto chapter 554, page 16
  2. Naruto chapter 555, pages 15-16
  3. Naruto chapter 494, page 3
  4. Naruto chapter 541, pages 17-20
  5. Naruto chapter 526, page 8
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 Naruto chapter 553, page 12
  7. Naruto chapter 543, page 12
  8. 8.0 8.1 Naruto chapter 554, page 15
  9. Naruto chapter 547, page 3
  10. Naruto chapter 554, page 1
  11. Naruto chapter 555, page 2
  12. Naruto chapter 555, pages 4-5
  13. Naruto chapter 554, page 1
  14. Naruto chapter 554, page 3
  15. Naruto chapter 554, page 2
  16. Naruto chapter 553, page 3
  17. Naruto chapter 554, pages 6-8
  18. Naruto chapter 562, pages 6-7
  19. Naruto chapter 555, page 2
  20. Naruto chapter 553, page 12
  21. Naruto chapter 553, page 10
  22. 22.0 22.1 Naruto chapter 548, page 18.
  23. Naruto volume 58, page 79
  24. Naruto chapter 546, pages 8-9

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