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Characters: Naruto - Hokages
The Hokage are the leaders of the Hidden Leaf village. Each is recognized as the head of the village, and each one has the talent to match.Here be spoilers. Any thing that has not been aired on the free versionnote of Crunchyroll should be spoiler-tagged.Back to the main character index
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Hokages display example of:
- The Ace / The Gift: The first four Hokage were each hailed as the strongest warriors of their time and managed to surpass every other shinobi in the art of asskicking, to the point where their strength and skill were considered absurdly unnatural.
- Asskicking Equals Authority: Zig-zagged. It was initially claimed the Hokages earned the position by being hands down the strongest ninja in the village at the time (which the first four were, to be fair), but politics also plays a big role in their selection, as they need to be approved of by both the ninjas of the village and the daimyo. Notably, Hashirama originally intended the First Hokage to be Madara, but he was outvoted by the rest of the village. However, it's likely that candidates still need to be one of the village's best to even be considered for the job.
- Back from the Dead / Our Zombies Are Different: The first four were all revived by Orochimaru in Chapter 618.
- Badass: They're Kage, who are by the very nature of the title Badass. The Hokage are considered to be Badass even by the other Kage.
- Big Damn Heroes: After Orochimaru revives them using Edo Tensei to speak with Sasuke, they go to join the war against Madara and the Ten Tails.
- Broad Strokes / Continuity Snarl: We never get an objective view of just which Hokage is truly strongest, and Word of God is no help. It leads to Serious Business debates.
- Failure Knight: The only Hokage who didn't end up lamenting his shortcomings or inability to resolve certain problems was Tobirama, who arguably did more damage in the long run than all the others combined.
- Famed in Story / Folk Hero: Like most elite ninja. Most notable with Hashirama, who has both the largest reputation and is the farthest from it (in terms of personality).
- Informed Ability: For most of the series, almost everything we knew about their combat prowess was through word of mouth from characters that came after them, and what we actually saw was fairly underwhelming, to say the least. After they're all revived by Orochimaru during the Fourth Ninja War, we get a much better showing from them, particularly the First and Second Hokages.
- Master-Apprentice Chain: Hashirama founded the village and was the First Hokage. His brother became the Second Hokage, and was the one who trained the Third Hokage and Danzo, who would become acting Sixth Hokage. The Third Hokage trained the Fifth Hokage (who is herself the granddaughter of the First and grandniece of the Second) and the man who would go on to train the Fourth Hokage. The Fourth Hokage, of course, would train Kakashi, who would train Naruto. Both would go on to become Hokage; the Sixth and Seventh, respectively.
- No Sell: Thanks to being resurrected zombies, the first four Hokages are immune to Madara's Infinite Tsukiyomi.
- One-Man Army: Part of the job description.
- Posthumous Character: The first two and the Fourth are this, and we also end up learning more about the Third after his death than we did before it.
- Renaissance Man: Everything we've seen and heard of their abilities shows each of them as masters of a wide variety of techniques that don't really have anything in common with each other.
- Self-Duplication: All but Tsunade have some sort of Clone technique, and Tsunade's summon can do this too. Wood for Hashirama and Shadow clones for the rest.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The first four Hokages have all inadvertently helped cause the current conflicts.
- Hashirama spared Madara, enabling everything Madara would go on to do. Though it's later revealed that this isn't exactly what happened. Hashirama actually did kill Madara, however Madara - using rather convoluted means was able to revive himself.
- Tobirama was partially responsible for Madara going bad, and he laid the groundwork for the prejudices that would cause the Uchiha coup and massacre.
- Sarutobi was the one to first get Orochimaru fixated on immortality, due to a comment made near Oro's parents' graves. He also couldn't bring himself to stop Orochimaru (who would later start a war against Konoha and eventually kill him) when he had the chance. He also allowed Danzo to run around unchecked, which would have severe consequences in the long run, as every single non-Uchiha Big Bad, including Orochimaru, had some ties with Danzo or were a result of his actions that would come to haunt the very village he was claiming to protect.
- Minato let his students Rin and Obito die, which is what spawned the Big Bad.
- Walking Spoiler: Given just how deeply ingrained their actions are into the backstory of the series, and their influence on everything that's actually going on in the present day, this is unavoidable.
- World's Best Warrior / World's Strongest Man: This title has been somewhat liberally applied to the whole group, even Tsunade (who's hailed as the strongest kunoichi), with each having been variously stated to be the strongest Shinobi alive while they held the position and "strongest shinobi ever produced/seen by the Hidden Leaf". Chapter 627 even uses "the four strongest soldiers" in the narrative text when referring to them. Needless to say, when the top dog of the four is discussed, it gets messy. Though amongst all seven of the Hokage, there's no debate because the most powerful by far and away is obviously Naruto.
"Those who stray from the path of justice have no courage, but under the wing of a strong leader, cowardice cannot survive."
Real name: Hashirama Senju.
The First Hokage, also Tsunade's grandfather, was one of the founders of the Village Hidden in The Leaves ( The other being Uchiha Madara ). He was one of the greatest shinobi to ever live and respected by nearly everyone. His claim to fame was his Kekkai Genkai, Wood Style, which allowed him to utilize wood for various effects, to the point of being able to combat and suppress the power of a Tailed Beast.
, it's revealed he was the head of the Senju Clan who, in the olden days, clashed with Madara Uchiha and his clan. He formed an alliance with Madara and the other Uchiha to establish the Hidden Leaf Village as the first ninja village; However, Madara believed that he and the Uchiha were being treated unfairly and the two fought at the Valley of the End, with Hashirama ultimately emerging victorious.
His hobbies: bonsai and wood sculpting.
Favorite phrases: "The vast lands fertile" and "Heaven's garments are without seams"
They refer to perfect beauty without any artificial elements.
- Abusive Parents: His own father would punch him in the face for speaking out against conflict, in particular the toll it took on children.
- Adorkable: Contrasted with his more stoic brother, Hashirama seems downright goofy in comparison. He's chagrined at the idea of his granddaughter, Tsunade, being the Fifth Hokage, admitting that he spoiled her rotten as a child.
- Ain't Too Proud to Beg: He's more than willing to bow his head to another person if it helps calm the situation down.
- Ambiguously Brown: He and his brother likely inherited traits from different sides of their parents, though curiously, in the manga he seems to have the same skin tone as his brother.
- Authority Equals Asskicking: While he is willing to let others abuse him, he will remind them if they've said the wrong choice of words
Hashirama: No matter what happens I will protect our… no my village. I still believe that protecting the village is the best way to protect people, shinobi, and children…! Anyone who tries to harm it, whether they are my friends, siblings or my own children… I won't forgive them.
- Badass Creed: The "Will of Fire" originates from him.
- Badass Grandpa: He lived long enough to see his granddaughter, Tsunade, so he qualifies. Not that he looks it.
- Beware the Nice Ones: He's an easygoing, jovial, and polite guy, but when he gets serious he won't hesitate to kill someone who he considers a brother, or even his own family if they threaten his home.
- Beware the Silly Ones: He may be a big goof, but there is a reason why he was known as the God of Shinobi.
- Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: The Boke to his brother's Tsukkomi.
- Characterization Marches On: When Hashirama was brought back by an incomplete Edo Tensei, he seemed to be quite a serious and composed warrior, he and Tobirama didn't look much different personality wise; one could assume Orochimaru's limiting their powers to control them better also took its toll on their personalities, but nothing was said back then. This first taste of Hashirama's personality was pasted on related material as well, such as Video Games and fillers, showing us a composed warrior befitting of his legend. All that was rendered incompatible by the time Hashirama was revived again, showing us a more laid back and vigorously juvenile man who greatly contrasts with his brother, whose personality does resemble the one we first see. That said, when his Berserk Button gets pushed too far...
- Childhood Friends: With Madara.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Invoked by Suigetsu in-universe after witnessing his personality when Hashirama gets revived by the Edo Tensei. He finds it hard to believe such a jovial, happy-go-lucky person is one of the strongest shinobi ever. The second half of this trope comes into play when his Berserk Buttons are pressed.
- Death Glare / Awesomeness Is a Force:
- To Tobirama after he threatened Sasuke. Everybody got scared shitless, and the sheer force of his and Tobirama's chakra nearly destroyed the temple they were in.
- He gave Tobirama one to stop him from killing Madara Uchiha. Arguably, his seriousness in that particular situation is how Hashirama's dream for a truce with the Uchiha came into fruition.
- Dishing Out Dirt: One half of the Wood Style.
- Facial Markings: Gets these in his Sage Mode.
- Famed in Story / Folk Hero: Hashirama went down in history as one of the most powerful shinobi to ever live, certainly the most powerful in his time; the man who founded Konoha in its entirety with his Wood Release, the man who achieved a brief world peace, the man who created the Will of Fire, etc. It's actually to the point many in-story characters consider a lot of the stories about Hashirama to be mere myth and exaggeration. What those stories didn't pass on was his exuberant and jovial personality.
- Fluffy Tamer: His powers allowed him to control the Tailed Beasts.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The foolish sibling to Tobirama's responsible sibling. At least in terms of demeanor.
- Founder of the Kingdom: Co-founder of Konoha with Madara Uchiha, before things went sour with the latter. He's also the founder of the whole Balance of Power system between the five great ninja villages.
- The Gadfly: Enjoyed getting a rise out of Madara back when they were kids.
- Generation Xerox: Zig-zagged. When you actually see him for the first time, he seems to be a stoic, but kind leader. The next time we get a chance to see him, he's not only as energetic as Naruto, but also not very well-respected among his peers. His rival was Madara Uchiha, who is basically Sasuke with his crazy turned Up to Eleven.
- Green Thumb: He can grow entire forests in seconds with his Wood Style.
- Healing Factor: According to Madara, he could regenerate without using hand signs and knew many healing jutsus.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Probably one of his nicest characteristics is also is biggest flaw. He wants to believe that there is good in everyone, so he gave his childhood friend a lot of chances over the years and he utterly refused to accept that Madara was beyond help until their final battle at the Valley of the End, after he had attacked the village one too many times.
- This happens again after Madara is fully revived. He thinks Sasuke's resemblance to Izuna will cause Madara to falter and reawaken his kind side. This is a pretty bad judgement, considering that Madara tried to roast Sasuke just a few minutes earlier. Predictably, this assumption ends poorly for Sasuke.
- Idiot Hero: As noted by his brother, though he comments that Naruto outdoes him in this regard.
- Irony: As pointed out by Sasuke, Hashirama being ready and willing to kill anyone (be it a brother, a friend, even a family member or even his own child ) to protect Konoha makes Itachi the direct heir to his legacy, as he did the same thing on a larger scale.
- Keet: As revealed after his second resurrection by Orochimaru, while not outright childish, he's a lot more energetic and bubbly than his legend would have people believe.
- Knight in Sour Armor / Good Is Not Soft: At the Valley of the End, Madara notes that Hashirama isn't as soft as before.
- Living MacGuffin: The man's cells have been stolen and cloned so many times over that it is not an exaggeration to state that every Big Bad is running off his power. The primary Big Bad's army is actually just a ton of quasi-Hashirama clones.
- Living Statue: Hashirama's most powerful techniques create gigantic wooden figures to attack and defend with.
- Making a Splash: One half of Wood Style.
- Multi-Armed and Dangerous: His True Several Thousand Hands technique summons a gigantic wooden statue of Avalokiteśvara that can deliver Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs like no one's business just by the sheer volume of arms.
- Multi-Melee Master: Flashback frames to his fight with Madara show him using a wide variety of different weapons, from kunai to shuriken to a greatsword.
- Mr. Vice Guy: Was fond of gambling and passed this flaw to his granddaughter Tsunade.
- Nice Guy: Despite knowing Sasuke is considering destroying the village he helped create, Hashirama is remarkably cheerful and courteous towards him. It makes a lot more sense in hindsight once you realize that Hashirama was best friends with Madara and that Sasuke's resemblance to Madara means Hashirama is trying to succeed with the former where he failed with the latter.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: He stops Tobirama from killing Madara.
- No Hero to His Valet: He may be revered as a God-like shinobi by the rest of the world, but his younger brother Tobirama shows him much less respect, and even shushes Hashirama at one point, though he is quick to back down when Hashirama gets serious.
- Not So Different: With Madara, ironically, concerning the Tailed Beasts. For all of Hashirama's compassion, he, like Madara, was unable to take the Tailed Beasts' feelings into consideration when using his powers to subjugate them and dole them out to the Hidden Villages as peace offerings.
- Offered the Crown: Much to his chagrin. Hashirama's plan to make Madara the First Hokage fell apart when Tobirama correctly predicted that everyone in the village, including the Uchiha clan, would choose Hashirama instead.
- Older Than They Look: Doesn't look much older than 30 when he is revived (and the technique used to do gives the revived the same appearance they had at their time of death), but he actually lived long enough to meet his granddaughter, meaning he was probably closer to 50.
- One-Man Army: His wood style can easily decimate armies.
- Our Zombies Are Different:
- Orochimaru brought him back (along with his brother) with the forbidden jutsu Edo Tensei. He brought them back again in Ch. 618, along with the 3rd and 4th.
- Madara used some of his cells to recreate his body. It has no will of its own, though. The many Zetsus can also be considered quasi-Hashirama clones, as they're made from his cells but more along the lines of plant people.
- Person of Mass Destruction: He was able to single-handedly fight the power of Madara Uchiha and the Nine-Tailed Fox simultaneously in a battle that created an entire valley.
- Phlebotinum Rebel: Unlike the first time Orochimaru zombified him, where he was brought back much weaker than he was in life, the second time he's revived Hashirama is strong enough that Orochimaru can't control him. No doubt due in part to the fact that he's taking advantage of his new body being composed entirely of his own cells to augment the resurrection technique. Lucky for Orochimaru, though, Hashirama is much more interested in giving Sasuke some desperately-needed therapy than picking a fight at the moment.
- Rebellious Spirit: As a young teenager, Hashirama didn't hesitate to loudly criticize the cruelty of the shinobi system and the hypocrisy of the Senju clan to his father's face, getting routinely assaulted in the process for his trouble.
- Red Baron: Like Sarutobi, he is also called the The God of Shinobi.
- Red Oni: With Hashirama's personality being more fleshed out later on in the story, he became this to his brother Tobirama, complete with matching armor colors.
- Reincarnation: Hashirama is the reincarnation of Ashura, the Sage of Six Paths' younger son.
- Rule of Symbolism: Hashirama's jovial demeanor, pacifistic nature, his desire to enlighten Sasuke, his establishment of a harmonious village that overcame the boundaries of clan-based tribalism, and several of his jutsu all heavily imply a Buddha-related theme. He was even able to establish a short world peace that promptly shattered after his death. The first character used in writing his given name is also used as a counter for Buddhas.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: To the point of being a Hair Contrast Duo with his younger brother.
- Skilled, but Naïve:
- His brother's opinion of him. He thought the Senju and Uchiha would live together happily ever after once the village was founded, along with any other clan that joined them. Things unfortunately weren't that simple.
- He also thought that Sasuke's resemblance to Madara's deceased brother would deter Madara and that maybe Sasuke could get through to him. Needless to say, this plan did not pan out.
- Super Mode: Hashirama has Sage Mode.
- Superpowerful Genetics: His life-giving chakra and Wood Style are highly coveted, especially since it seems to be a major recessive trait not shared by any of his siblings or passed on to any of his descendants.
- Tall, Dark and Handsome: Very Bishōnen, has a darker skin tone than his brother, and is the tallest of the Hokages.
- Terrain Sculpting: In the flashback of his last fight against Madara, his Sage Mode allowed him to create a TITANIC statue of Kannon/Guanyin, the 1000-armed bodhisattva, in the span of a second. For the sake of perspective, the Nine-Tails looks like a real fox next to a two-story building.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The brothers were right on the verge of defeating the Uchiha for good, with Tobirama holding a katana directly above an exhausted Madara's chest and about to kill him. Then Hashirama stopped him, allowing everything Madara would later set in motion to occur.
- Verbal Tic: Played with. He's not as bad as the likes of Naruto, but ends his sentences with a forceful "zo" pretty frequently.
- Warrior Therapist: Tried to play this role to Madara and the Uchiha as a whole. It... didn't really work out in the long run.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Comes across as one, with his insistence on sharing power and enabling Madara's insanity over and over again because he believes in a perfect world where they can be super best friends forever.
- The Worf Effect: Black Zetsu hijacks Obito's attempt to bring back several deceased characters, forcing him to instead resurrect Madara. Just to demonstrate how powerful Madara is even now when he's no longer an Edo Tensei zombie, Hashirama is subject to this, with Madara somehow absorbing his Sage mode.
- Worf Had the Flu:
- Due to the fact that Edo Tensei hadn't been perfected when Orochimaru used it against Sarutobi, he was brought back with much less than full strength, which accounts for his poor showing in that fight.
- As Madara's resurrection showed, Hashirama couldn't have been brought back by Orochimaru at full strength, leading to him being defeated with almost zero effort by Madara.
- Worthy Opponent: To Madara Uchiha.
"Guide the people, and believe in them, for it's from among them that one will come who will carry on when your time is done."
Real name: Tobirama Senju.
The younger brother of the First Hokage, who is a master of Water Style jutsu. He is also very impassive and lacks the merciful nature that defines his older sibling. He revolutionized the shinobi system by creating institutions and organizations, such as ANBU and the Shinobi Academy, that were adopted by all other ninja villages. Post Time Skip
, quite a few new elements about him were revealed, including him being the one who created Edo Tensei, the Flying Thunder God Technique, and the Shadow Clone Technique.
Favorite words: "Mind – technique – body"
- A Father to His Men: He was this to Sarutobi, Danzo, and their teams, to the point of sacrificing his own life to guarantee theirs.
- Awesome by Analysis: He figures out Obito's Chakra Weapons are Yin-Yang Release, which means... Edo Tensei can't regenerate and if hit fatally-they die permanently. He also constantly analyzes Obito's abilities and powers to find a weakness, and finally found one in the form of Senjutsu.
- Berserk Button: Threatening to destroy Konoha. Especially if you do it in front of him, as Sasuke found out the hard way.
- Blue Oni: With their personalities being more fleshed out in the flashback to Konoha's founding and his second resurrection, Tobirama became this to his brother, matching armor colors.
- Boke and Tsukkomi Routine: The Tsukkomi (The Straight Man basically) to his brother's Boke (The Fool basically).
- Brutal Honesty:
- Combat Pragmatist: It's been noted Tobirama liked to wait for the moment his opponent thought they had claimed victory, then strike while their guard was down. He also seemed to have inspired Minato's combat tendencies, using the Flying Thunder God Technique to teleport directly to an enemy and strike them before they could even react.
- The Comically Serious: Ever since being revived again, he's done practically nothing but call Minato a moron and balk at Naruto's lack of deference to his admittedly awesome acomplishments. It makes for some of the funniest material in the series.
- Deadpan Snarker: Along with being The Comically Serious, his statements about Minato and Naruto's lack of thinking are pure gold.
- Death Glare:
- One strong enough to make Orochimaru, Sasuke, and Suigetsu freak out and alarm both Minato and Hiruzen.
- It wasn't just the glare, but also a massive release of chakra as a threat when Sasuke openly considered destroying Konoha in front of him. Hashirama releases an equal amount of chakra (including his own Death Glare) which causes the shrine they're in to start crumbling.
- Defiant to the End: After failing to stage a surprise attack on the revived Madara and being pinned to the ground by several chakra rods, the thing he does after Madara boasts how Hashirama's world has failed is to spit on the bastard's face.
- Detect Evil: He could distinguish Madara's chakra not only by the strength its source, but also the feel, calling it "foul." He could also determine what clan someone's from in the same way.
- Doppelgänger Attack: Invented the Shadow Clone technique.
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Played for laughs between him and Naruto. Naruto is completely unaware of his role in inventing various jutsu, which annoys Tobirama without fail.
Naruto: Wow! You can copy my dad! Old man with the face of the Second Hokage!
Tobirama: It's the Fourth that's copying me. Also, you should address me as the Second with respect!
- Elemental Baggage: The first major aversion in the series. The ANBU watching his fight with Sarutobi mention how incredible he is to be able to use massive water style jutsu with no preexisting water source.
- Facial Markings: A reason he's not like his brother.
- Fantastic Bigotry: Played with. He believed the Uchiha were a "clan possessed by evil", and the nature of the Sharingan makes them volatile and dangerous. To this end he tried to give them a position that would help channel their power to something productive with the Military Police. When he learns they had been wiped out after attempting a coup he is unsurprised, but admits he does not hate the Uchiha, just that they should be treated with caution. He even admired those who never succumbed to the Curse of Hatred and worked with the village, like Kagami. It's just that the Uchiha were on his radar more than any other clan in Konoha.
- Flash Step / Speed Blitz: He invented the Flying Thunder God Technique, and mortally wounded Izuna Uchiha with it.
- Folk Hero: Founded the education system of the Leaf and is the one who created most of its infrastructure and administration.
- The Force Is Strong with This One: He could tell how strong a shinobi's chakra signature was from a long distance away.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The responsible sibling. Note that doesn't mean flawless or even nice.
- Genius Bruiser: Just look at the amount of Jutsu that he invented.
- Giant Wall of Watery Doom: His Water Encampment Wall not only surrounds him with a towering wall of water, but also floods the surrounding area.
- Good Is Not Nice: Tobirama is among the leaders in Naruto who lean towards cynicism while still being a priori good. The fact that Orochimaru of all people said Tobirama was the Hokage he admired the most says a lot...
- Heroic Albino: It makes him look quite different from his Ambiguously Brown brother.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Possibly. It's hinted that he appoints Sarutobi as Third Hokage because Tobirama did this to save his team.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Brought back as a indestructible zombie by Orochimaru thanks to the technique he created. Twice.
- I Did What I Had to Do: He feels no guilt in his treatment of the Uchiha clan, even after hearing of Itachi's massacre of them.
- Jack-of-All-Trades: He invented Edo Tensei, but Orochimaru and Kabuto perfected it and took it to a whole new level. He invented the Flying Thunder God Technique as well, but Minato's use of it is faster than his. He also created the Shadow Clone technique, and it became one of Naruto's signature techniques.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Everything he says about the Uchiha is littered with bigotry and Fantastic Racism, but at the same time, considering that the two main villains of the series are both Uchiha, and that he's saying this to Sasuke, his point is undeniably valid. His decision to appeal to democracy and dislike of the Sharingan's grim source of power caused Madara to Jump Off The Slippery Slope.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Tobirama may not be the nicest but he is driven by love for the village and its people.
- Katanas Are Just Better: The flashback accompanying the tale of Konoha's founding shows Tobirama using a katana, which he carried across his shoulder.
- Laser Blade: A filler arc centered around a sword he once wielded called the Raijin Blade, an electric blade made from Hard Light.
- Making a Splash: According to the databook he's the greatest Suiton user to ever live. Yes, that means greater than Kisame and the Second Mizukage. Ironically, he's barely used any in his biggest battles.
- My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Tobirama was an excellent sensor-type ninja in the same vein as Karin and the Second Tsuchikage, to the point he could detect both the number and the strength of shinobi from a long distance away, as well as the direction they're in/coming from.
- Necromancer / Our Zombies Are Different: He invented Edo Tensei, which creates infinitely-regenerating bodies of paper and ash that have a self-perpetual supply of chakra.
- Nerves of Steel: Everyone else freaked out when Hashirama actually got serious after Tobirama's epic Death Glare. Tobirama himself barely even flinched, and despite the fact he backed down soon afterwards, showed no signs of even being bothered by his brother's Let's Get Dangerous moment. Possibly justified by the fact they're brothers who seem to be on rather good terms and have known each other for so long. Of course, that doesn't explain Tobirama's emotional flat-line at the idea of facing a resurrected Madara Uchiha, even taking the initiative to do just that before Orochimaru stopped him.
- Not-So-Small Role: Prior to late in Part II, Tobirama's only real purpose is to fill the gap between Hashirama and Hiruzen in the Hokage line, and being the one who started the Chunin Exam tradition. Turns out he's one of the most important characters in the entire setting.
- The Obi-Wan: To Hiruzen, Danzo, and their teammates, and later to Naruto.
- One-Man Army: He was renowned for being able to clear entire battlefields by exploiting the regeneration ability of an Edo Tensei body and turning all that paper and ash into tags that summon more of themselves before exploding for a massive, self-perpetuating chain of explosions. It's implied he could do it needing to use Edo Tensei, too.
- Person of Mass Destruction: This was a shinobi who could infinitely nuke entire battlefields and single-handedly dominate any battle of attrition, and that's before you take into account the tsunami-level water techniques, the Speed Blitzing, and the shadow clones.
- Properly Paranoid: He's undeniably prejudiced against the Uchiha, and while there were a few he held in high regard, Tobirama still believed they were inherently evil unless they proved themselves to him. His mistrust ultimately turned out to be completely valid.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: He wasn't just suspicious of the Uchiha, he was suspicious of every clan that might pose a threat to Konoha. However, those individuals who could overcome clan mentality and put Konoha first were the ones who inevitably ended up earning both his trust and his respect.
- Reason Before Honor: His methodology in running the village, which arguably started more problems than it solved, and his distrust of Madara and the nature of the Sharingan even after the alliance made by the Senju and Uchiha clans eventually helped drive Madara to his Start of Darkness.
Tobirama: My brother believed that the village was something that demolish the boundaries between clans. Well in the end it wasn't that simple… My brother was too soft… and Madara too dangerous… My role as Second Hokage was to mediate between them while protecting and reinforcing the village.
- Sacrificial Lion: Used himself as a decoy during the First Shinobi War to allow his subordinates to escape a group of highly elite enemy ninja, naming Hiruzen as Hokage right before he did so. Presumably, he didn't come back.
- Self-Fulfilling Prophecy: His atitude towards Uchiha can come off as this.And let's just leave at that.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: To the point of being a Hair Contrast Duo with his younger brother.
- Space Master: Just as good at space-time ninjutsu as Minato and Tobi, this is the guy who invented the Flying Thunder God Technique. Though it's more a case of Minato and Tobi being just as good at the art as he was, given they came after him.
- The Spock: Much more rational and cold in his thinking than his brother. When he was younger and had a conversation with his brothers about what was needed to stop the conflict and create peace, his answer was to give shinobi a code of conduct that would stop senseless and endless killing. He even stated everything he does is for the greater good of the village, even if it leads to what many would and do consider bigotry, discrimination, or callousness.
- The Stoic: Tobirama is always composed, even when he's threatening someone.
- Stuff Blowing Up: He could use Edo Tensei, or just place special explosive tags on his target, and said tags would summon more tags before blowing up, then the summoned tags would do the same... over and over and over... starting a chain reaction of massive explosions to wipe out the target. During the First Shinobi World War, his use of it was a Reset Button for entire battlefields.
- Super Speed: He was hailed as the fastest Shinobi in the world while he was alive, and Minato would later
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Undoubtedly the greatest example in the series, and one of the best ever. Let us count the ways:
- He is the one that that killed Madara's last living brother, Izuna. Since the loss of his brother was a major factor in Madara going bad, Tobirama is arguably indirectly responsible for everything Madara's actions would cause in the present day. Which is basically everything. Izuna's death would also lead to Madara implanting his brother's eyes into himself and unlocking the Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan, which would eventually evolve into the Rinnegan and ultimately be implanted into a young boy named Nagato.
- Tobirama protested Hashirama's wish to make Madara the Hokage. While there's nothing wrong with sharing his belief that their leader should be elected democratically in private, he also gets into his belief that the Sharingan is evil due to it being powered by hate and tells Hashirama that the village, including the Uchiha, would never accept Madara as Hokage. When Madara was, unbeknownst to Tobirama, concealing himself from his sensory abilities and eavesdropping on them. This dashed Madara's slowly rekindling hopes for a peaceful future and sent him right back off the deep end. He even used Tobirama's likely ascension to Hokage after Hashirama and his "inevitable" persecution of the Uchiha as part of his justification for turning on the Leaf.
- Tobirama game the Uchiha control over the Military Police in the hope they could channel their power and emotions into something useful to the village, and as a means to prevent a new Madara from showing up because the Military Police would be right there to catch them. What that actually ended up doing was isolate the Uchiha from the rest of the village, on top of giving them their own base of operations. Naturally, when things started to go sour, there wasn't nearly enough communication or good will going around to try to reverse the damage until it was already too late.
- He created Edo Tensei, which was said to be meant as a Reset Button for entire battlefields, essentially allowing anyone who knew the technique to single-handedly dominate a war through sheer attrition. Orochimaru later acquired the technique and made improvements to it, eventually culminating in Hashirama and Tobirama's resurrection by Orochimaru during the latter's attack on Konoha, which would result in the Third Hokage's death. Then Kabuto got his hands on the technique and made even more improvements to it, using it to revive dozens of powerful ninja throughout history under his control, inflicting countless casualties against the allied shinobi forces trying to stop Tobi's Evil Plan. Then Orochimaru used it to revive Hashirama, Tobirama, Hiruzen, and Minato at near full strength, and he has full control over the movements of all of them except Hashirama.
- It's heavily implied Tobirama was the one who inspired Danzo's political philosophy and outlook, given the eerie similarities between the two. Pretty much every non-Uchiha villain in the series including Orochimaru has ties to Danzo, and Danzo not only was one of the parties directly responsible for ordering the Uchiha massacre (the other two were part of the team Tobirama personally trained, by the way) that led to Sasuke's Start of Darkness, he was also there to help along both Nagato and Kabuto's own Starts Of Darkness.
- Walking Spoiler: His choice of words and philosophies are what caused almost all of the problems in the story; in fact the only ones he didn't cause were ones that happened prior to his birth, and those he just made worse.
- Weapon of Choice: Unlike his brother, Tobirama's only ever been shown using some kind of sword.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Orochimaru calls him out for even creating Edo Tensei, let alone actually revealing it to the world. Even one of the Kage who was alive during Tobirama's time called Edo Tensei a "wretched technique" after being revived by it. His predecessor (and older brother) Hashirama also apparently lectured him about it being an inappropriate jutsu at some point in the past.
- The Worf Effect: After absorbing Hashirama's Sage Mode, Madara subjects Tobirama to a Curb-Stomp Battle.
- Worf Had the Flu: Due to the fact that Orochimaru had not yet mastered Edo Tensei in Part I, he was brought back with less than full strength, which accounts for his poor showing in his fight against Sarutobi.
"When the tree leaves dance, one shall find flames. The fire's shadow will illuminate the village, and once again, tree leaves shall bud anew."
Real name: Hiruzen Sarutobi
Sarutobi was the Hokage when the series began. At the outset of the story, he was one of only two people - the other being Iruka Umino - shown to give Naruto any consideration at all.
We learn more about him through flashbacks: In his prime, he was hailed as "The Professor" for his mastery of numerous techniques (allegedly knowing every jutsu developed in the Leaf), and "God of Shinobi" for being unquestionably the greatest ninja of his generation, and after seeing the power of Hanzo, the Third Raikage, and the Third Kazekage to name a few, this is saying a lot
. He also trained the Sannin. Later, we learn that he was the only member of the Leaf's brass to speak out against the massacre of the Uchiha Clan, who were suspected of plotting a coup.
He retired after a while, giving the title to the Fourth Hokage, Jiraiya's student Minato Namikaze. After the Fourth's death, he takes the title of Hokage again. He later gets a more permanent retirement
at the hands of Orochimaru, but not before sealing his old student's arms.
His hobby was chatting with young girls.
Favorite phrase: "Absolute Truth"
"To be a ninja is to be at constant war against hate. It holds true for all of us."
Real Name: Minato Namikaze
The Fourth was Kakashi's teacher, Naruto's father, the hero of the Third Great Shinobi War (so feared by the Hidden Rock Village that a "flee on sight" order was given to their entire army for him) and vanquisher of the Nine-Tailed Fox. Notably, he was a master of the Flying Thunder God technique (which allowed him to instantly teleport to any spot marked with his seal), and developed the Rasengan, a spiraling ball of kinetic energy that took him three years to develop and is so devastating as to be able to defeat even S-class nin with a single attack. He later taught it to Jiraiya and Kakashi, the former of whom would eventually teach it to Naruto.
The Fourth died as a side effect of sealing the Nine-Tails into Naruto. The price for the seal was to imprison his own soul along with the Nine-Tails'. The seal has a failsafe; upon reaching 8 tails, Minato appears in Naruto's mind to prevent the total destruction of the seal. When Orochimaru split open the Shinigami Death God's belly, it released his soul from its 16-year confinement and allowed Orochimaru to put it in an Edo Tensei body.
Favorite phrase: "The fire's shadow illuminates the village"
- Action Dad: He's Naruto's father.
- Amazon Chaser: Kushina is a pretty tough lady. Minato quickly becomes smitten with her.
Minato: I noticed your beautiful hair right away.
- Awesome by Analysis: Minato was able to understand Madara's Black Chakra's properties such as Madara can only control them up to 70 meters, meaning that if Madara can't see them, he loses control of them
- An Arm and a Leg: As a result of Obito's Anti-Magic powers, he loses an arm as a zombie and can't regenerate it, then loses the other to Madara's use of the same Anti-Magic.
- Animal Battle Aura: Can use Yin Kurama's chakra to enter Tailed Beast Mode.
- Badass Longcoat: Known for it, and his son Naruto temporarily inherited the tradition.
- Battle Couple: With Kushina.
- Big Damn Heroes: He stopped the Nine-Tails' attack on Konoha. Later on, he erased the Ten-Tails' Tailed-Beast Ball, saving the entire shinobi alliance from destruction.
- Bishōnen: Kushina even mocks him in their youth for his pretty boy looks.
- Broken Pedestal: A mild version. He was one of Naruto's inspirations growing up. After learning about the seal, Naruto never showed any change in attitude until they met and Naruto learned that he was his father. Naruto did punch him and called out on the cruddy childhood before wondering whether he should be happy or angry. While the 4th says that it's admittedly of little consolation to just apologize, Naruto does say that he'll deal with it, being the 4th's kid. During their talk, it was then built back up and even strengthened.
- Broke Your Arm Punching Out Cthulhu: Died sealing away the Nine-tailed fox inside Naruto.
- Brutal Honesty: Isn't afraid to deal some cold truths to his students from what we see of him in Kakashi Gaiden - he's impressed that Kakashi came up with a new technique (Chidori), but forbids him from using it on the basis of its impracticality for as long as Kakashi has no way of predicting and countering his opponent's attack, and he lets Obito get away with the 'got something in my eye' excuse until his inability to react puts them in danger during a mission.
- Ended up receiving this from Obito during the Fourth Great Ninja War. On his own part, despite finding out that Obito was responsible for everything that's happened up to that point, Minato is fully willing to admit some of the blame in not protecting Obito during the Third World War and Rin during the mission in the Hidden Mist Village. He also tells Kakashi that as Obito's teammate and friend, it should have been Kakashi's, not Naruto's responsibility, to knock some sense into Obito.
- Childhood Friend Romance: He and Kushina knew each other as kids, and couldn't have been more than about 14 when they fell in love.
- Combat Pragmatist: Given he didn't seem to have the same amount of raw power his predecessors were capable of, Minato relied on prior preparation, Teleport Spam, and using every advantage he could find against his opponents. He would even put the Flying Thunder God's formula on enemies' bodies, often without their knowledge, to extend where he could teleport to beyond the predictability of his kunai's locations. This also let him always find and go directly to an enemy even if he couldn't see them, and he would usually teleport behind them.
- The worst part about the markings was they couldn't be erased once they were placed. Enemy shinobi who were marked by them were stuck with them for the rest of their life, and the markings could be used as a kind of sensory technique that let Minato know what was happening within a certain area of them. It's pretty much the shinobi-equivalent to Big Brother Is Watching You.
- Another thing that makes his combat style so pragmatic is it uses no seals. Minato relies on speed, skill, and his unique kunai in combat. The only techniques you ever see him use during fights are the Rasengan and the Flying Thunder God. Neither one uses any hand seals, which not only minimizes his periods of vulnerability, but allows him to instantly punish opponents who do rely on jutsu as well as free up both his hands and his concentration. He's called the fastest ninja in history, and he earned that, because he maximizes speed in all its forms when he fights.
- Crazy-Prepared: He prepared countermeasures for if Naruto's seal is on the verge of being broken or opened (his chakra was sealed inside so that he could restore the seal), and if his wife was in danger (he put a seal on her that allows him to immediately be at her side at any given moment). In fact, he seems to have scattered a bunch of seals all throughout the Leaf Village and the surrounding area, so he could teleport to anywhere in the village or redirect high powered enemy attacks into abandoned areas.
- Cultured Badass: Hailed as one of the greatest ninja ever born, he was the guy that invented the devastatingly powerful Rasengan and had plans to make it stronger before he died. Enjoys reading, notably Jiraiya's first novel and the Third's poem, and even discussed the 'cycle of hatred' with Naruto, regarding Pain.
- Dead Person Conversation: With Naruto.
- Determinator: Jiraiya remarked that Minato had the fiercest determination he's seen before Naruto. Which could attribute how Minato became Hokage so quickly.
Minato: I want everyone in the village to acknowledge me and become a great Hokage!
- Disappeared Dad: Naruto's.
- Ditzy Genius: Has shades of this in contrast to his wife's Genius Ditz. Generally hailed as a genius who appeared once a decade, yet has little to no naming sense at all and acts like a total dork on some occasions. It's even lampshaded by Tobirama when he makes comparisons with Naruto.
- The Dreaded: Due to his ability to clear a battlefield in an instant alone, there was a flee on sight order should he appear to a fight.
- Energy Ball:The Rasengan
- Epic Fail: When his son is dying in front of him, Minato has to seal the other half of Kurama inside him to save his life but as he distracts himself with a flashback of how he promised Kushina to protect Naruto, Black Zetsu gets between them and steals the Kyuubi right under his nose.
- Father to His Men: Towards his students.
- Flash Step/Speed Blitz: Thanks to the horribly broken combination of Super Speed and Teleport Spam.
- Four Is Death: The first Hokage to be confirmed to be dead in the first chapter.
- Geometric Magic: His specialty, sealing techniques, taught to him by his wife Kushina, which included the Flying Thunder God jutsu, and was used to defeat the Nine-Tails.
- Giver of Lame Names: The names of his techniques can be overly grandiose. Tobirama Senju mentions that a name for a new attack he came up with would make him laugh if they weren't in the middle of a battle.
- Golden Super Mode: Due to sealing the Yin half of Kurama's chakra into himself he can use use the kyuubi's chakra for this effect.
- Handicapped Badass: Thanks to Obito cutting off one of his arms, he has spent most of the war like this. This is made more extreme when Madara cuts off the other arm.
- Happily Married: To Kushina.
- Hellish Pupils: Vertical slits when using the kyuubi's chakra for his Golden Super Mode.
- Hero of Another Story: Kishimoto has said that he would be interested in writing another story in the Narutoverse with Minato as the protagonist, which, being the Hokage automatically counts him as this.
- Heroes Want Redheads: The first thing he noticed about Kushina is her hair. This was also how he was able to track her down and rescue her when she was kidnapped, by following the strands of red hair that she dropped.
- Heroic Sacrifice: The first thing we learn about him.
- Heroic Suicide: Use of the Reaper Death Seal invokes this.
- Hidden Badass: Kushina initially believed him to be nothing but an unreliable wimp, but he proved her wrong when he saved her from the Hidden Cloud's kidnapping attempt.
- Hyper Awareness: He would have to have had a rather healthy dose to truly be able to wipe out entire battalions in an instant as it was claimed. Even though he can get to every enemy on the battlefield by tossing his special kunai in every direction, he would have to warp to each one, identify the nearest enemy, dispatch him in the most efficient way possible, move on to another target, rinse and repeat. Scores of times. While the kunai are still flying. And this would all happen in a matter of seconds.
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: By Kurama when it tried to kill baby Naruto.
- Lightning Bruiser: He was the fastest man alive, and his Rasengan can hit harder than most high-level jutsu can ever hope to.
- Locked Out of the Loop:
- Ironically, while his student is one of the Big Bad's and a significant amount of the plot occurred within his lifetime, Minato seems to be the most ignorant of four revived Hokages about the whole situation.
- Later on during the war when Minato is revived (and finally learns that his student is the Big Bad), Obito calls him out on this and says he's always found him to be a bit clueless.
- Long Title: Prone to giving his (and sometimes other people's) attacks comically long and convoluted names.
- Luke, I Am Your Father: Turns out he's Naruto's father. Not that this wasn't obvious from the word Go.
- Mass Teleportation: By channelling his own power through Naruto and Kurama's chakra, he is able to teleport an entire army.
- Mentor Occupational Hazard: This is in full effect considering that his student Obito is responsible for summoning Kurama to destroy the Hidden Leaf Village, which led to Minato's death in the end.
- Messianic Archetype: Of a sort. He's like a proto-Naruto in that sense. When he was a kid, he wanted to be Hokage so that he could help everyone in his village. Jiraiya also at one point believed he was "The Child Of Prophecy", and would be the savior of the ninja world. To say nothing of the Warrior Poet tendencies he had, and the fact he literally gave his life protecting the village against the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox as his last act as Hokage.
- My Greatest Failure: Not realizing the masked man was his former student Obito Uchiha led him to sacrificing his life and family for the sake of facing a man he could have stopped.
- However, as Kurama (of all people), is quick to point out, it wasn't his fault. He couldn't have known his student would survive, and even then, knowing Tobi's identity that night wouldn't have changed anything. Kurama still had to be stopped, and trying to convince Obito to stop his plans would have been pointless. The Obito he knew was long dead by that point.
- He also feels this way about his failure to protect his former team; specifically Obito (from being crushed and then taken in by Madara) and Rin (from dying). Had he managed to save either of them, most of the current story wouldn't have had to happen.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: He was nicknamed The Yellow Flash. The running away part is acknowledged in the series, as Minato is still, to our knowledge, the only ninja to have ever had a flee-on-sight order placed on him.
- Nice Guy: Jiraiya once said he was this growing up and Minato being Hokage would have been the same towards the village.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: So after Obito got the Jubi taken out, he was back to being normal. Kakashi was about to give him a well-deserved finishing blow, but Minato stopped him, using the If You Kill Him, You Will Be Just Like Him argument. In an attempt to redeem himself, Obito tries to use Rinne Tensei to bring back a number of deceased characters, but is hijacked by Zetsu and forced to bring back the real Madara Uchiha instead. So now, any trouble Madara gives the heroes, which so far includes all nine of the tailed beasts being simultaneously absorbed, will happen because of Minato's decision to spare Obito.
- He feels this way about not being there to save Obito, and his failure to handle the Kyuubi attack better.
- One Degree of Separation: A case particularly annoying to the fandom, as he was an integral person in Jiraiya and Kakashi's lives as well as knowing a number of other people in the Leaf who would come to know his son Naruto... and none of them bother to tell Naurto about his family. While there are Fanon handwaves that Naruto's lineage was kept secret to prevent Minato's enemies from attacking him, that doesn't explain why no one has told Naruto about his parents or had any plans to. Naruto eventually learns via Minato himself, who sealed some of his personality into the Kyuubi seal.
- One-Man Army: Like all the Kages so far. For him it was the ability to destroy entire squadrons in milliseconds thanks to his Flying Thunder God Technique, and his Rasengan could defeat even S-rank opponents in a single hit as Tobi can attest.
- Opposites Attract: With Kushina.
- Panicky Expectant Father: Well, he has every right to be with the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox trying to escape from his wife's body during the birth of his son.
Minato: Umm... I've never seen Kushina in so much pain before that she's cried out like this. Is... is she really gonna be okay?
- Papa Wolf: Obito exploits this to get him away from Kushina long enough to break the seal. Bastard.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Single-handedly curb-stomped Kushina's kidnappers when he was still in his early teens.
- Plot-Triggering Death: His last act was to seal the Nine Tails inside Naruto, thus providing impetus for the plot.
- Posthumous Character: We've come to know him quite well for a character whose death kicked off the plot.
- Purple Prose: A relatively mild version, but his big personality quirk is his tendency to come up with incredibly elaborate, overly-long names for new ninjutsu.
- Red Baron: The Yellow Flash of The Leaf.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: He's a calm and mild Blue to his wife's loud and Hot-Blooded Red.
- Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Savvy Guy to Kushina's Energetic Girl.
- Sealed in a Person-Shaped Can: He sealed half of the Kurama's power inside himself and the other half into his son, Naruto.
- Senseless Sacrifice: At first. One of his desires when he sealed Kurama's Yang half into Naruto was that that the people of Konoha would embrace Naruto as a hero instead of a plague. Which they didn't due to the grudge against the fox, instead they were convinced Naruto and Kurama were one in the same. Ultimately subverted when Naruto earns the entire village's respect and becomes a hero.
- Space Master: Is a master of Space-Time Ninjutsu. Thanks to the Flying Thunder God Technique, he could move instantaneously between locations where he's placed specialized seals.
- Strong Family Resemblance: To his son Naruto.
- Super Mode: Due to having Kurama's Yin Half, he has access to its chakra allowing him to use the same Golden Super Mode that Naruto can, and also an avatar of Kurama's Yin Half in his mind. He later reveals that he also has Sage Mode.
- Super Speed and Reflexes: Given he was able to react to A's top speed, which even the Sharingan could not track. He was commonly considered the fastest Shinobi in the world while he was alive. After his death, the title went to the Fourth Raikage. And was then claimed by his own son during the Fourth Shinobi World War. Of the four reincarnated Hokage, he is the first one on the scene to fight the Juubi. The Second Hokage, the creator of Minato's trademark Flying Thunder God Technique, explicitly says that Minato is faster than him upon arriving.
- Teleport Spam: His entire fighting style. By spreading teleport tags around the battlefield, he can jump from one to the other in an instant, leaving no time for his opponents to react. His Level 2 version of the technique is so fast that he can teleport to his kunai while they're still in the air after being thrown, which is how he defeats Tobi in their first fight.
- He can even use it defensively by setting up markers well away from the battlefield and teleporting enemy attacks away right before they hit. On two occasions, he uses this trick to stop a Biju Bomb which would have wiped out hundreds of lives otherwise.
- Thanatos Gambit: Sealed Kurama the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox into Naruto in order to eventually combat Tobi, as well as make sure that the tailed beast would not resurrect elsewhere, lost to the Leaf Village. He also used this to fulfill his beloved Kushina's dying wish that she might be able to see her son grow up, by placing her chakra in the seal.
- Through His Stomach: His favorite food is his wife's cooking.
- Was It Really Worth It?:
- Upon being resurrected with Edo Tensei and learning about the Uchiha clan massacre, Minato contemplates that his premature death contributed a lot to the present mess and that had he stayed around many tragedies could have been averted. He also acknowledges not giving Naruto the parental love he deserved and decides to compensate for that with a present.
- It hits him really hard when he discovers his student was the one behind the attack and he could have stopped him without losing his life, his wife and making his son the Jinchuuriki of Kurama the Nine-Tailed Fox.
- Weapon of Choice: His custom-made kunai, as pictured in the above image, all of which have the Flying Thunder God seal on the handle.
- Weak, but Skilled: In a sense. While extremely powerful, Minato does not have the sheer chakra levels nor variety of jutsu's as the other kages. However, while Minato might be the weakest in that regard, he's arguably the most skilled out of them due to his mastery of the Flying Raijin Jutsu in conjunction with his training.
- What Is One Man's Life in Comparison?: Discussed this with Kushina about sealing Kurama into their son Naruto in order to protect the village, damning him to a jinchuriki's lonely existence.