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Monday, August 18, 2008

Sasori


Sasori (サソリ, Sasori) also known as Sasori of the Red Sand (赤砂のサソリ, Akasuna no Sasori) was a member of Akatsuki prior to his death, and was partnered with Deidara, Orochimaru before that. "Sasori" (蠍) means scorpion.

Background

Sasori had a horrible past, comparable to Gaara's. When Sasori was around five years old, his parents left him and were killed by Sakumo Hatake. All of his life, Sasori has been lonely. He began to make puppets at the age of five, and even made puppets of his parents to get rid of the terrible loneliness he felt.

Sasori, known as Sasori of the Red Sand, was a missing-nin from Sunagakure. Sasori left Sunagakure twenty years before his introduction, but the background to his crimes is unknown. Flashbacks seem to indicate that his descent into darkness started when his parents died. As mentioned above, Sasori went so far as to simulate being with them by turning the Sand Village's malfunctioning puppets into puppets of his parents. This effort failed, (the puppets cracked) and he abandoned the puppets, although Chiyo kept them safe and upgraded them so they could be used in battle.

About twenty years before the start of Naruto: Shippuden, possibly due to being found to have experimented on people in an attempt to create human puppets, Sasori left the village. Sometime after leaving the village, Sasori joined Akatsuki and was eventually paired with Orochimaru. After Orochimaru left Akatsuki, Sasori was teamed up with Deidara, though he always carried a grudge against his former partner. He sent Kabuto Yakushi to spy on Orochimaru, but Orochimaru dispelled Sasori's jutsu and convinced Kabuto to join him. At one point, Sasori abducted and killed the Third Kazekage, converting the Kazekage's body into a puppet.

[edit] Personality

Sasori is known for his impatience (he notes that he does not wish to wait or keep others waiting). He has little empathy for his opponents or regard for human life, and he states that he will not feel anything if Chiyo dies from his poison or using her life energy to heal Sakura, as he claims that his heart has become like his puppet body.

Sasori and Deidara both portray conflicting views of art, and they frequently argue about their different views. Deidara holds that art is something transient that departs quickly, whereas Sasori believes that fine art is something wonderful that is left long into the future. This reflects their individual natures (Deidara makes clay sculptures that explode; Sasori makes long-lasting puppets out of humans). Deidara outwardly seems to respect Sasori's beliefs, but Sasori doesn't respect Deidara's.

Deidara commented to Kakashi on how much stronger Sasori is compared to himself, however at the time of his death, Sasori had not yet captured his tailed beast. A short dialogue between himself and Deidara suggests that Sasori did not even know what beast he had been assigned to target. After his death, Tobi takes his place, and his ring, in Akatsuki.

[edit] Part II

[edit] Rescue Gaara arc

Sasori returns to Sunagakure with Deidara to capture Gaara. After Gaara's capture, Kankuro attempts to stop the Akatsuki duo, and Sasori confronts him so that Deidara can go on ahead unopposed. Sasori makes quick work of Kankuro, nearly killing him and easily destroying Kankuro's puppets, due to his pre-existing knowledge of their secrets. After the one-tailed Shukaku is extracted from Gaara at the Akatsuki hideout, Sasori and Deidara are left in charge of defeating the pursuing Team 7. As Deidara leads half of Team 7 away, Sasori is left to face Sakura Haruno and Chiyo, his grandmother.

Soon after the battle begins, Sakura is able to destroy Sasori's Hiruko puppet (with Chiyo controlling Sakura like a puppet). After Sasori emerges from Hiruko's remains and reveals his true self, he brings out his Third Kazekage puppet. Seeing that puppet, Chiyo realizes that Sasori was responsible for the Kazekage's disappearance years earlier, the fate of whom had remained a mystery until that point. Since the Third Kazekage is a human puppet, Sasori is able use its various Iron Sand abilities to attack and overwhelm Chiyo and Sakura. To try and combat the Kazekage, Chiyo brings out Sasori's parents, converted into puppets years earlier by Sasori. Although Chiyo has since equipped them with extra weapons, the Kazekage's abilities quickly disable the two puppets. Acting on her own, Sakura demolishes this puppet after picking up on its movements.

With the loss of the Kazekage puppet, Sasori begins attacking with his own body, its puppet additions allowing him many advantages over Chiyo and Sakura. When Chiyo brings out her own ten puppets in an attempt to level the playing field, Sasori uses his Performance of a Hundred Puppets, allowing him to control ten times as many puppets as Chiyo. Since Chiyo's puppets are designed to work together, a trait lacking with all of Sasori's puppets, her puppets fare far better than his, though they are eventually overwhelmed by attrition. During the battle, Chiyo attempts to seal Sasori's chakra with a special orb from one of her puppets, but misses his heart and only catches his body.

Using the seal as a distraction, Sasori makes it appear as if she succeeded and attempts a sneak attack on Chiyo. Sakura takes the attack for Chiyo, giving Chiyo the chance to use Sasori's parent puppets to stab him through the heart in the form of a hug. As a reward to Sakura for defeating him, Sasori informs her of a spy that he has within Orochimaru's ranks, and tells her of when and where she can meet this spy. As Sasori dies, Chiyo implies that Sasori could have avoided her last attack, but he allowed himself to be defeated. It appeared as if Sasori chose to die in the loving embrace of his parents.

[edit] Abilities

Sasori is a master of puppetry. His grandmother, Chiyo, began teaching him such skills at a very early age, and he created many puppets over his lifetime. Prior to his leaving the village, Sasori created the puppets Kankuro uses throughout the series; Karasu, Kuroari, and Sanshuou. Along with being a master of puppetry, Sasori is also a master of poisons. His poisons take effect instantly, and one such poison kills the target after three days of suffering. Additionally, his poisons are practically incurable, even by Chiyo, whom is also a master of poisons. Sasori added this poison to virtually every weapon in his arsenal, making each blow potentially lethal for his opponents.

Sasori's Puppet Armour, Hiruko
Sasori's Puppet Armour, Hiruko

During regular combat, Sasori usually wears his puppets like armor and controls them from the inside, thus eliminating the puppeteer's weakness of being a separate and exposed target. Sasori's favorite puppet to use in this manner is Hiruko (ヒルコ), which he adorned with the regular Akatsuki outfit and wore so often that others came to recognize him only while he was wearing it. Also, when within Hiruko, Sasori has a deeper and more gruff voice. Hiruko has a long mechanical scorpion tail (allusion to his name meaning scorpion), extending from the mouth of what appears to be a mask, on his back, a recent addition to add extra defense to a weak point. The tail works as Hiruko's main offensive weapon, and at first seems to be indestructible. The tail is also used as an extra defense, by spinning it around his body at a rapid speed. The left arm is rigged with a projectile launcher capable of firing shrapnel and needles, and the mouth can be opened to serves as a similar projectile-firing device, capable of firing poisoned needles, but with a more rapid speed.

Sasori's Puppet Body
Sasori's Puppet Body

Although Sasori is in at least his thirties, he maintains the appearance of a teenage boy. Sasori's unnaturally young appearance is a product of his design. Most of Sasori's body (excluding his heart) is actually a puppet. In place of his stomach is a thick cable coiled around a pole, allowing Sasori to use it as a stinger and retract it as necessary. Attached to his back is a scroll holder, which Sasori uses to store his human puppets. Sasori also added a pair of poles to the back of his hips, each equipped with five large blades that that can spin like a propeller, and pipes to each of his hands, that can spew out fire, like a flamethrower, or water. Installed in the right part of his chest is a mechanism that can spin numerous chakra strings, allowing Sasori to control, at least, one hundred puppets at once, amongst others used for his Red Secret Technique: Performance of a Hundred Puppets that he claims could take over an entire country, and giving him a drastic advantage over all other puppeteers. Sasori's left part of his chest holds the only part of him still human and thus the only, and needed, part of his body capable of controlling chakra, a cylinder-shaped device containing his heart.

Because Sasori's heart was the only living part of himself, his puppet body is virtually indestructible. When smashed apart, he can simply draw the pieces back together. Additionally, he can transfer his heart to other puppets, allowing him to abandon a body should it be damaged beyond repair or otherwise incapacitated. How he transfers his facial features, as depicted in the manga, is not explained; at one point, he transfers to another puppet that somehow has his face.

In addition to being a master puppeteer, Sasori's regular puppets are unique in that they are made from the still-living bodies of humans. These human puppets are more versatile than regular puppets, since in addition to having many dangerous devices installed within them (as is common with regular puppets), they are also able to use chakra and perform jutsu. Any kekkei genkai abilities possessed by the converted human are also passed on to the puppet. Sasori claims to have a collection of 298 Human Puppets, 103 of which he actually displayed.

Sasori's favorite puppet, the Sandaime Kazekage
Sasori's favorite puppet, the Sandaime Kazekage

His favorite human puppet is the Third Kazekage, which retained its unique magnetic chakra abilities, and thus can use the fearsome Iron Sand technique. Of course, mixed with Sasori's poison, the Iron Sand was given a more lethal edge. The Iron Sand can also be used to fill up the joints of other puppets, thus immobilizing them.

The Kazekage puppet's right arm holds several poisoned blades, while the left arm can open up to reveal several summoning seals that summon thousands of similar arms. The several arms are capable of pinning down an opponent, and if that fails, they can release several poisonous gas clouds that are instantly fatal if inhaled. The summoned arms can also release kunai attached wires, to drag the opponent into the gas cloud. The arms can also fire several regular kunai. If the extra arms are cut off, a small chainsaw will take their place.

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