|Manga||Volume #26, Chapter #234|
|Anime||Naruto Episode #134|
|Novel||Naruto Jinraiden: The Day the Wolf Howled|
|Movie||Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie|
|Game||Naruto Shippūden: Ultimate Ninja 4|
|OVA||Naruto Shippūden: UNSG anime cutscenes|
|Appears in||Anime, Manga, Novel, Game, Movie|
White Zetsu (白ゼツ, Shiro-Zetsu) was half of the Akatsuki member Zetsu (ゼツ, Zetsu), the other being Black Zetsu. He was one of the first victims of the Infinite Tsukuyomi, and eventually was pulled from the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path by Black Zetsu, and infused with the DNA of Hashirama Senju by Madara Uchiha.
White Zetsu was originally one of the victims of Kaguya Ōtsutsuki's Infinite Tsukuyomi, who was transformed after being tethered to the Shinju for a certain period of time and ultimately stored within the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path. After Madara Uchiha summoned the statue and cultivated Hashirama Senju's DNA into a large flowering tree, Black Zetsu removed White Zetsu and the other victims from inside the husk, leading Madara to believe they were artificial humans created by the statue's chakra and Hashirama's DNA. White Zetsu and other mutated humans were then tasked with intelligence gathering before he and a spiral-patterned Zetsu were entrusted with looking after the rehabilitating Obito Uchiha. Over time, the duo became friends with the young Uchiha.
When Obito's rehabilitation was near completion, White Zetsu returned to the base and informed Obito that Kakashi Hatake and Rin Nohara were being attacked by Kirigakure shinobi. When the spiral-patterned Zetsu offered to help Obito by encasing himself around the young Uchiha in order to enable him to leave the cave, White Zetsu served to guide Obito telepathically with the information he received from other Zetsu stationed outside. When they returned to Madara, White Zetsu assured him that no one had seen them and relayed information on what had happened after the arrival of Konoha reinforcements, noting that Obito didn't kill Kakashi.
When Madara was on the verge of death, he imbued Black Zetsu into White Zetsu's right half, believing the former was a manifestation of his will. Zetsu later accompanied Obito to Amegakure to locate Nagato, who had unknowingly been given Madara's Rinnegan as a child, and watched as Obito introduced himself using Madara's identity.
Unlike Black Zetsu, White Zetsu, nicknamed "Chatterbox" (饒舌, Jōzetsu), was carefree and playful with a habit of teasing others, traits shared by many of his clone siblings. In the Japanese version of the manga, White Zetsu used kanji and kana regularly. This was often conveyed in the anime through a higher-pitched voice. While he and Black Zetsu sometimes had differing opinions, the two halves were still able to function as a single entity.
White Zetsu appeared to be extremely trustworthy, obedient and loyal, being entrusted with Akatsuki's secrets and knowledge of Madara's Eye of the Moon Plan, which he believed to be beneficial to mankind. Because of his ties to Madara, White Zetsu worked with Obito for a long time, originally helping him find and convince Nagato to join them. Though he annoyed Obito at first, White Zetsu eventually won the boy's friendship. Like Tobi, White Zetsu believed Madara was a good man at heart and saw no harm in helping Obito without Madara's permission.
Zetsu's main role within Akatsuki was to function as a spy, with other duties that were similar to those of a hunter-nin. He was able to control his body and take part in the tailed beast sealing ritual simultaneously, which, in addition to being unique to him, allowed him to act as a lookout while the sealing took place. When an agent of Akatsuki, or possibly even a member, died, Zetsu was sent to devour their bodies so as to not have their secrets revealed, further adding to his nature as a half-plant creature. Zetsu was also the one sent to retrieve the rings of dead Akatsuki members. Due to the role he played, Zetsu was the only member of Akatsuki to act without a partner on a regular basis. He operated on his own, often moving between the different locations where the other Akatsuki members were located. This resulted in other members reporting directly to him, rather than the figurehead leader, Pain. Zetsu would in turn report directly to Pain as well as Obito, the organisation's benefactor and eventual leader.
When together, the two Zetsu were easily distinguished by the two Venus flytrap-like extensions that emerged from their sides, enveloping their head and upper body as a shell, which they were able to open and close. Beneath these extensions, White Zetsu had short green hair and a single yellow eye. The right half of his body was covered by Black Zetsu, whose leg was originally White Zetsu's own right leg. Under their Akatsuki cloak, they wore blue pants and sandals, and had both legs wrapped in bandages. Zetsu's green Akatsuki ring, which bore the kanji for "sign of the boar" (亥, gai), was worn on Black Zetsu's little finger. In the anime, Zetsu's fingernails were painted pink and his toenails, as seen in his début, were blue.
Unlike Black Zetsu, White Zetsu had human-like facial features and a proper eye, as well as unusually rounded teeth. When he was first created, his Venus flytrap-like protrusions were not fully formed, being white in colour as well as sticking out all along the right side of his body. When the two halves split apart, their plant-like extensions would separate and hang from the waists of both. Any clothing they were wearing, including their Akatsuki mantle, would split along with them, usually causing them to discard their torn clothing. When either of the halves emerged from the ground while split, their plant-like extensions would surround them in a circular formation. The two also demonstrated the ability to grow an additional leg, though deformed, from their white body mass to substitute for their missing half while split.
White Zetsu was described by Obito as not being a "front line fighter" and thus never directly participated in battles. However, by using several supporting abilities, he proved to be of great use for his allies and master.
In addition to functioning as a single entity with Black Zetsu by communicating through thoughts, White Zetsu was able to split his body in two, allowing them to act independently. While separated, the two halves could extend roots underground to communicate with each other over long distances.
He was able to create and remotely communicate with near-identical clones of himself, which could absorb a person's chakra. With his Spore Technique, White Zetsu was able to plant these clones on the bodies of others in the form of spores, which were undetectable even to sensor type and Kage-level shinobi. Once activated, these spores would grow into a white mass which surrounded the individuals they formed on and absorb their chakra while restricting their movements. The clones could also use this stolen chakra to replenish an ally's chakra supply by attaching themselves to him or her. Obito had White Zetsu attach several of these spores to Sasuke Uchiha in order to monitor and even assist him when necessary.
White Zetsu claimed to have the best transformation technique and was able to freely alter his form and chakra signature. Doing so allowed him to become or create a completely indistinguishable substitute of another individual, even becoming suited with their tools. By manipulating the nature of his chakra, he was also able to emulate techniques of which is known to him. Because White Zetsu was typically weaker than the one he was imitating he mainly used this technique through his clones to serve as decoys or for infiltration and assassination. Even after suffering tremendous damage, or even death, the technique would not cancel until he chose to release it.
Despite, himself, not being suited for prolonged battle, White Zetsu showed considerable skill in emulating the personalities and battle tactics of his target. It was because of this characteristic that the entire Allied Shinobi Forces was forced to be in constant paranoia and sometimes turned on one another. Though with keen analysis, one could exploit his lack of knowledge on certain subjects. Those who could sense negative emotions could also take advantage of his true intentions.
White Zetsu was capable of utilising all five basic nature transformations along with Yin and Yang Release. Because he was tethered to the flowering tree grown from Hashirama Senju's DNA, White Zetsu's genetic material and chakra was identical to that of the latter's. Like Hashirama, he was able to use Wood Release, albeit on a much weaker scale.
Zetsu's signature technique was Mayfly, which allowed him to merge with the ground to quickly travel to a new location, though not as quickly as Obito's space–time travelling. This technique was ideal for Zetsu's function as a spy, as it erased his presence and prevented him from being sensed.
Being a mutated human, White Zetsu was able to survive without food or water and did not need to carry out normal human bodily functions. He could, however, quickly devour another individual completely, as he was normally tasked to dispose of dead Akatsuki members or allies that way. Doing so also serves to supplement its own chakra reserves. Being almost entirely composed with the cells of Hashirama Senju, White Zetsu had the capacity to heal nearly any wound, even without the use of hand seals. It's because of this that White Zetsu was able to aid his companions by grafting his body parts unto them, should they lose any major portion of their anatomy. Those aided in this way are also gifted White Zetsu's healing capabilities.
Sasuke Recovery Mission
After Sasuke and Naruto's fight at the Valley of the End, Kakashi and Pakkun appear to bring Naruto back home. As the three begin the journey back home to Konoha, Zetsu appears from the ground, having witnessed the whole battle. Later his silhouette appeared with the rest of the Akatsuki members where they discussed Orochimaru taking Sasuke Uchiha, the capturing of the Nine-Tails and the furthering of their plans.
Kazekage Rescue Mission
During the extraction of the One-Tail, Zetsu is told by the Akatsuki Leader to use his real body to use as a lookout, in which he identifies several enemies such as Team Guy, Team Kakashi, as well as Chiyo who was with the latter. Later, he is sent to dispose the corpses of Mukade and Yura, finding Mukade a delicious meal.
After Sasori and Deidara were defeated, Zetsu and Tobi were sent to retrieve their rings, and dispose of their corpses. However, he was unable to eat Sasori due to him being a puppet, but was amazed to finally see what the real Sasori looked like. Tobi found Sasori's ring, wishing to take his place. Black Zetsu thought this was a bad idea, but White Zetsu thought otherwise, noting that Tobi was a good person. They later found Deidara's severed right arm and believe him dead until he arrived and proved them wrong. This caused Black Zetsu to wonder why Deidara hadn't captured Naruto Uzumaki, to which Deidara replied that he had already fulfilled his quota either way.
Akatsuki Suppression Mission
After Hidan and Kakuzu defeated Yugito Nii, Zetsu appeared to retrieve Yugito, and asked if Hidan was finished with his long winded ritual. When Hidan claimed that they were infidels ignorant of prayers, Zetsu told him that when sad and alone, all one can count on is yourself. Kakuzu, disagreeing stated that money was all one could count on. White Zetsu agreed that money was important, however Black Zetsu stated finding the next one was much more important. Zetsu is later seen sealing the Two-Tails.
Itachi Pursuit Mission
After Deidara's death Zetsu was sent to recover his body, with White Zetsu wondering what happened to Tobi. Black Zetsu mentioned that based on the damaged area, he was most likely caught up in Deidara's explosion. Later, when Pain had encouraged the organisation to mourn Deidara's loss, White Zetsu took it on himself to mourn for Tobi's loss, while Black Zetsu thought such a notion was ridiculous.
Tale of Jiraiya the Gallant
After Pain's fight with Jiraiya, Zetsu revealed himself to have been watching the whole battle. As Pain announced he was going to capture the Nine-Tails, White Zetsu said it would be an interesting battle and wanted to go. However Black Zetsu had another battle in mind, and they decided to watch Sasuke's battle with Itachi.
Fated Battle Between Brothers
Both halves spectated and commented on the battle, with Black Zetsu offering knowledge on various Sharingan abilities. When Itachi died, Zetsu noted that Itachi shouldn't of been that weak, believing him to have already been afflicted prior to the battle. He later appeared near Tobi while he was engaged in combat with the Eight Man Squad, to report to him the result of the fight. They then led Tobi to where Itachi and Sasuke were, with Black Zetsu confirming to Tobi that he had indeed recorded the fight. After a meeting with Taka and Kisame, Tobi met with Zetsu on a bridge where they discussed the fact that Itachi — who had been hampering their plans — was dead and Zetsu lamented on the fact that so many Akatsuki members had died. Tobi said their deaths were worth it because Sasuke was in his hands now.
Zetsu is present when Akatsuki begins sealing the Eight-Tails, and when it is revealed that the jinchūriki fooled Sasuke and replaced himself with a tentacle, White Zetsu flew into a hysterical laughter, which greatly annoyed Black Zetsu.  Upon Nagato's death and Naruto returning to the village crowned as a hero, Zetsu revealed himself to have hidden inside a tree, watching the entire fight between them, hardly believing Pain to have been defeated, but decided to relay the information to Tobi. He then returns to Tobi and Kisame, reporting Nagato's death and betrayal, also mentioning that Konan wouldn't be returning either.
Five Kage Summit
Zetsu finds Tobi after the latter had encountered Taka, revealing that Konoha had already been destroyed, and that Danzō had been named the acting Hokage. He then mentioned to Sasuke that Naruto had defeated Pain, and was probably stronger than him. When Taka agreed to go to the Kage Summit, Zetsu split in half, and White Zetsu proceeded to lead Sasuke and his team to the Kage Summit.
White Zetsu stayed with Taka in the Land of Iron, observing the meeting of the Five Kage and trying to figure out a way to successfully assassinate Danzō. After identifying Danzō, White Zetsu managed to slip away from Taka unnoticed. White Zetsu later emerged in the conference room, telling the five Kage that Sasuke was somewhere around. After revealing himself, the Fourth Raikage grabbed the white Zetsu's neck, asked him about the whereabouts of Sasuke, and threatened to use force. Zetsu mockingly replied that he would give a hint, which prompted the Raikage, angered, to tighten his grip on Zetsu's neck. With his neck snapped, the White Zetsu collapsed on the floor and was presumed to be dead by everyone in the vicinity.
After Sasuke had been struck by the Fifth Mizukage's Boil Release: Skilled Mist Technique, Zetsu's Spore Technique, which had secretly been implanted on everyone in the meeting hall before the Raikage's attack, activated. The spores leached some of the Mizukage's chakra while binding the samurai guards, Mifune, Ōnoki and everyone else. One of the spores then jumped onto Sasuke and gave him the absorbed chakra, allowing him to use an arm of Susanoo to escape from the Mizukage. The spores were later successfully neutralised by everyone present at the time of their release.
After Naruto and Sasuke clash, the aftermath of which sends Sasuke hurtling towards a wall, a clone of White Zetsu appears and wraps himself around Sasuke to cushion the blow. Revealing that Tobi had told him to keep an eye on Sasuke, the clone contacts the real White Zetsu, who alerts Tobi. Upon Tobi's arrival, the White Zetsu clone, prepared to fight and capture Naruto, created several more copies of himself. Before he could engage in combat however, Tobi tells him not to as he wasn't a 'front line' fighter, and instead gives him the task of checking up on Kisame and rejoining with Black Zetsu.
White Zetsu and Black Zetsu meet up at the site of Killer B and Kisame's battle only to reveal that Kisame's decapitated body was actually one of White Zetsu's shape-shifting clones. It is then revealed that Kisame, by having the clone fake his death, was then able to infiltrate Kumogakure while inside Samehada which was being carried back to Kumogakure by Killer B who intended to use it as his own weapon. Black Zetsu then stated that it was their feeding time and that they should merge once again.
Fourth Shinobi World War: Countdown
In the anime, Zetsu sees off Tobi before he made his journey to Amegakure to retrieve Nagato's Rinnegan. Upon Tobi's acquisition of the Rinnegan, Zetsu informed him that the scroll with the information that Kisame Hoshigaki sent through his messenger shark had arrived, also noting that everything seemed to be going in their favour. Zetsu later accompanies Tobi as he shows Kabuto around the Mountains' Graveyard, but questions if Tobi should really trust him.
Fourth Shinobi World War: Confrontation
Supervising Sasuke's recovery, Black Zetsu told him to be patient when asked if his bandages could be removed, with White Zetsu remarking that when he did regain his sight it would be to a different world, and that things were getting really fun. As the Fourth Shinobi World War commenced, Black Zetsu separates from White Zetsu to carry out his assigned tasks, leaving White Zetsu to make sure Kabuto could not abduct Sasuke during the confusion of war. White Zetsu's spores are also placed on Kabuto's body to help monitor him.
After being alerted about Naruto and Killer B escaping the Island Turtle from Black Zetsu, White Zetsu reported this to Tobi, also questioning if they still needed to capture the daimyō. Upon being told they didn't matter White Zetsu lamented that Black Zetsu was fighting the Mizukage for nothing, to which Tobi responded that by stalling the Mizukage and her allies, they were effectively splitting up her forces. White Zetsu asked about what Tobi was going to do, in which he revealed he was going to join the battle, by stealing the "substitute".
Fourth Shinobi World War: Climax
On the second day of the war, White Zetsu was used as a test subject for Sasuke's new eyes and impaled by a blade formed from the black flames of Amaterasu, which was wielded by the youth's Susanoo, and was subsequently incinerated.
In Other Media
Road to Ninja: Naruto the Movie
Zetsu was responsible for sending several White Zetsu Army soldiers disguised as deceased Akatsuki members to attack Konoha at the beginning of the movie. Later, he was seen with Tobi after Naruto and Sakura returned to their world, noting that they were so close to capturing the Nine-Tails.
Creation and Conception
In Naruto Hiden: Sha no Sho Character Official Data Book, Kishimoto revealed that he had originally planned for Akatsuki to be a group of monsters, "with almost no human characteristics", and that Zetsu's design was modelled after an insectivorous plant. He also stated that he had decided to make Zetsu half black and half white to "better show his split personality".
- The name "Zetsu" (舌) means "tongue". A fitting name, as White Zetsu was referred to as "Chatterbox" (饒舌, Jōzetsu) based on his personality.
- According to the databook:
- Zetsu's hobby is observing unique shinobi.
- Zetsu wishes to fight people who are likely to leave behind a corpse that will make a good meal.
- Zetsu's favourite food is "chewy" people, while his least favourites are konnyaku and jelly.
- Zetsu's favourite phrase is "Independence unbending" (独立不撓, Dokuritsu Futō), which roughly means "The only one you can count on is yourself".
- Wherever Tobi is, Zetsu is never far behind.
- In the fourth databook, kekkei genkai is not listed among Zetsu's special characteristics, despite his usage of Wood Release through Hashirama's cells in the manga.
- White Zetsu and his clones are not dissimilar to the legends told of the mandrake plant used to create artificial men.
- (To Obito) "Well to say it simply… He wants to get rid of all the bad things in the world and run away to a dreamland full of good things! In a dream you can do whatever you want… even revive the dead."
- (To Black Zetsu about Tobi joining Akatsuki) "It'll be all right, after all, Tobi is a good boy."
- (To Hidan) White Zetsu: "When you're sad and alone…" Black Zetsu: "…The only one you can count on is yourself."
- (To Sasuke) "The next time you open your eyes you'll be seeing a whole new world… things are getting really fun!"
- ↑ Third Databook, pages 96-97
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Fourth Databook, pages 110-113
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 Chapter 661, page 5
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Chapter 681, page 14
- ↑ Chapter 521, page 4
- ↑ Chapter 602, page 13
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 7.2 Chapter 603
- ↑ Chapter 604, pages 3-7
- ↑ Chapter 606, page 9
- ↑ Chapter 606, pages 14-15
- ↑ Chapter 606, pages 13, 17
- ↑ 12.0 12.1 Chapter 603, page 5
- ↑ Chapter 603, page 17
- ↑ Chapter 255, page 3
- ↑ Chapter 261, pages 10-11
- ↑ Chapter 280, page 17
- ↑ Chapter 314, page 3
- ↑ Chapter 486, page 8
- ↑ Chapter 536, page 12
- ↑ Chapter 466, page 11
- ↑ Chapter 618, page 12
- ↑ Chapter 487, page 14
- ↑ Chapter 545, pages 2-4
- ↑ 24.0 24.1 Chapter 396, page 7
- ↑ Chapter 603, page 1
- ↑ Chapter 261, page 10
- ↑ Chapter 234, pages 18-19
- ↑ Chapter 238, pages 19-20
- ↑ Chapter 261, page 12
- ↑ Chapter 255-256
- ↑ Chapter 280, pages 18-19
- ↑ Chapter 281, pages 14-15
- ↑ Chapter 314, pages 2-3
- ↑ Chapter 363, page 5
- ↑ Naruto: Shippūden episode 125
- ↑ Chapter 383, page 14
- ↑ Chapter 395, pages 13-17
- ↑ Chapter 404, pages 16-17
- ↑ Chapter 419, page 12
- ↑ Chapter 460, page 3
- ↑ Chapter 486, pages 3-5
- ↑ Chapter 486, pages 7-9
- ↑ Chapter 487, pages 13-16
- ↑ Naruto: Shippūden episode 252
- ↑ Chapter 511, page 18
- ↑ Chapter 512 pages 5-6
- ↑ 47.0 47.1 Chapter 553, page 15
- ↑ Chapter 536, pages 11-14
- ↑ Chapter 280, page 19
- ↑ Chapter 314, page 2
- ↑ Chapter 515, page 4