|Date of birth||February 29|
|Place of origin||Unknown village|
|Relations||Orochimaru (former master)|
Sasori (former master)
|Current status||Reversed to human form|
Ophidian (snake form)
|Behind the Scenes|
|Performed by||神奈 延年 - Kanna Nobutoshi |
水野 マリコ - Mizuno Mariko (young)
Kabuto Yakushi is a major antagonist of the Naruto anime/manga series, who was trained by Orochimaru.
He was orphaned by war as a child, and was found by Nonō Yakushi and raised in the Konohagakure's orphanage. After joining Root, he served as a deep cover agent in different countries for several years before defecting and joining Orochimaru, where he acted as his personal medic, research assistant, and general right-hand-man. During the Fourth Shinobi World War after Orochimaru's sealing, Kabuto joined forces with Tobi and Akatsuki.
Due to the amnesia he suffered, Kabuto was a rather shy, quiet and a polite boy, who didn't knew who he was or where he belonged in the world. He showed to be very grateful for the glasses he received from the nun who took him in, even shedding tears of happiness, showing he was rather sensitive as a child. As a result of his upbringing by Danzō Shimura, Kabuto served as an undercover agent in several hidden villages, including those of the Five Great Shinobi Countries. During one such assignment in Iwagakure, he was forced to flee after his cover was blown and unwittingly attacked his "mother" Nonō, in the process. With her unable to recognize him even as he healed her injuries, Kabuto came to question his identity and purpose, when he was once again approached by Orochimaru, who explained to him that his unfortunate encounter with the nun (who was told by Root that they would release Kabuto to live a civilian's life if she executed an assassination) was engineered by Danzō himself, as he had become an asset too dangerous to handle for Root as an accomplished spy (and thus needed to be eliminated).
After Danzō's betrayal, Kabuto joined Orochimaru's newly formed village, and though generally obeying his new master's orders to the point of saving his life, Kabuto occasionally acted against him by helping his enemies in certain occasions. Even in those instances, he never revealed his true thoughts, and was always entrusted with Orochimaru's confidence. Despite his unclear goals, Kabuto seemed to be content in following Orochimaru, using this allegiance to make requests for specific bodies to experiment in. He seems to detest rudeness, indicated by his frequent admonishments of Sasuke Uchiha for not treating Orochimaru with respect. In a battle, Kabuto would use his opponent's weaknesses and phobias against them, shown in the Fourth World War as Kabuto freely reincarnated people for both combat and psychological warfare.
Despite his rather cool, sadistic and manipulative (yet polite) personality, he possesses a dry sense of humor, and was inwardly conflicted with major insecurities about his identity for most of his life. Kabuto had defined himself at best to be a "shy introvert who preferred secluded places". The moment he merged with Orochimaru's cells, inspired by Naruto's resolve, Kabuto felt he could be whatever he wanted and live a life free of loyalty.
His arrogance is shown when he admits that he believes himself to be nearly an equal to the Sage of the Six Paths, perfect and unbeatable. He is seemingly willing to go to great lengths to acquire the Sharingan, even blackmailing Obito Uchiha into an alliance while leaving a trail of corpses to allow Anko Mitarashi and her brigade to follow into Mountains' Graveyard. This action not only served to have the two opposing factions cripple each other during the war, but also for Kabuto to increase his power by siphoning Anko's chakra. He also admitted an interest in Zetsu, being promised one of his clone brothers as compensation for his services. Overall, Kabuto compares himself with Itachi Uchiha, both of whom served Konoha in the shadows but were ostracized by the village in return, and claims that because of this he understands Sasuke more than anyone. However, after realizing that he is imprisoned within his own mind in an endless loop and his machinations have fallen apart, he attempts to justify his actions by asserting that he wanted someone to affirm and recognize his existence.
From a young age, Kabuto showed a very sharp mind. Later, being trained as a spy by Root for espionage missions on all great ninja villages, as well as being the right-hand man and spy for Orochimaru, and being a former Akatsuki sleeper agent, Kabuto is extremely skilled in matters of intelligence gathering and espionage, having gained access to large stores of knowledge which he uses to produce devastating effects. This includes him finding Tobi, as well as knowing that he was not the real Madara Uchiha and simply using his name to help him start the Fourth World War, and his plan to revive the Ten-Tails, knowing about Zetsu, outwitting Kurotsuchi by knowing her abilities, and even the truth of the Uchiha clan massacre, the latter of which is so secretive that only a selective few ever knew.
Like his mentor Orochimaru, Kabuto has shown himself as an extensive researcher, performing multiple experiments to increase or neutralize an individual's abilities, as shown by his creation of Manda II, his intricate knowledge of the Wood Release and subsequent empowering of the Zetsu army, his mastery of the Impure World Reincarnation, his enhancement of Madara's prime body and the enhancements done to his own body by studying, assimilating and reverse engineering the abilities of his former master, the Sound Five and team Taka.
Kabuto's trademark is a pair of black rimmed circular glasses, a gift from Nonō, and he is rarely seen without them. He has onyx eyes and ash-grey hair, which is normally kept in a ponytail that extends to his upper back, with his bangs framing either side of his forehead. In the majority of his earlier appearances, he wore a dark purple shirt with a high collar, a white under-shirt, dark purple fingerless gloves with armored plates on the back of the hand, a white cloth waistband worn at an angle, dark purple pants, blue sandals, and a shuriken holster on his right leg. He typically wore a blue Otogakure forehead protector, but was first seen wearing a blue one from Konohagakure, as a part of his genin disguise. In Part II, he no longer wears his forehead protector or gloves. He also occasionally wears a purple hooded mantle, particularly when trying to hide his identity.
Shortly after Sasuke counter-absorbed Orochimaru, Kabuto took cells and tissue from the remains of his true form and implanted them in his body. Though he was resisting their influence, the cells and tissue slowly began to take over his body, first spreading over the left half of his face and much of his left side, causing the affected areas to turn a pale white color and become scaly, with his left eye developing Orochimaru's purple marking and serpentine pupil. During the anime-exclusive Chikara Arc, he wore a black robe with red lining and no longer kept his hair in a ponytail, instead leaving it long and unkempt, with the bangs parted to cover the left side of his face and his right cheek, partially obscuring the physical effects of absorbing Orochimaru's cells. During this time, both of his eyes possessed yellow irides with serpentine pupils, although only his left eye was surrounded with Orochimaru's distinctive purple marking.
Upon reappearing shortly before the outbreak of the Fourth World War, it's revealed that he learned to fully control Orochimaru's genetic material, causing him to take on many of the physical traits of his former master. These included purple eye markings along with scaly patterns on his face and much of his body. He wears his hair in an unkempt bowl cut, allowing it to grow out. He wears a maroon cloak with a hood designed to resemble a serpent's head, with white, red, and yellow markings that resemble eyes; the hood can be closed like a snake's mouth to help protect his senses from the effects of genjutsu. A long, white snake was also fused with his abdomen, which he kept wrapped around his waist and was often seen slithering out from under his robes like a tail. He was also able to shed his human body, taking on the appearance of a monstrous snake with sharply distorted facial features and arms. After Sasuke revived Orochimaru, the latter reabsorbed his chakra from Kabuto, which caused his reptilian features to recede as he reverted to his original human form.
Despite officially being a genin, Kabuto has proven himself to be a skilled and cunning ninja far beyond that level, particularly because of his medical abilities. Even Jiraiya and Orochimaru remarked at one point that his skills were comparable to those of Kakashi Hatake, a jonin. He has been shown to be able to kill ANBU members with relative ease, and even mockingly stated he could handle at least ten of them. Through keen observation, Kabuto can quickly determine the situation at hand, and can gain an advantage by quickly exploiting his enemies' weaknesses. He is also very adaptable, as when Tsunade flipped his nervous system signals, he managed to regain control of his body quickly, a feat that impressed her. Even as a child, he already demonstrated great potential, to the point that Orochimaru took great interest in him and kept track of him prior to his recruiting. Upon adapting to his bodily modifications and mastering the art of Sage Mode, his fighting prowess was greatly enhanced to the point that he was able to overwhelm the combined efforts of both Sasuke and Itachi Uchiha despite their considerable combat prowess, skills and mastery of the Mangekyō Sharingan, eventually forcing Itachi to use the forbidden Izanami technique in an attempt to subdue Kabuto and force him to end his Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation.
As a part of his "quest to find himself", Kabuto performed various experiments on his own body, integrating the DNA of Orochimaru and several of his experiment subjects into his own body. As a result, he gained access to their unique abilities, techniques and kekkei genkai. Kabuto gained access to his master's snake techniques and summons, the ability to alter his body and an enhanced chakra capacity. Kabuto also assimilated DNA from three members of Taka, gaining Karin's healing powers and Jūgo's ability to passively absorb natural energy, allowing him to continuously use Sage Mode without assistance. In addition to assimilating Suigetsu Hōzuki's DNA, Kabuto developed an altered version of his liquefaction abilities.
Kabuto also integrated the DNA of the entire Sound Five team into his body. He could use Sakon's Attack of the Twin Demons to manifest a construct identical in appearance to Sakon, which was connected to the base of his navel-snake. The construct could transform into the other members of the Sound Five as well as Orochimaru in both his human state and his true form, allowing Kabuto to utilize the abilities of the one whose form it took on. This allowed Kabuto to make use of Jirōbō's Earth Release techniques, Tayuya's sound-based genjutsu, Kidōmaru's web techniques, and Kimimaro's Shikotsumyaku kekkei genkai. By creating a manifestation of Orochimaru and changing it into his true form, Kabuto could capture opponents or emerge from the giant snake to perform a surprise attack; even if this second attack was somehow blocked, Kabuto could shed his skin again to continue his move. Using these multiple abilities, Kabuto developed a versatile fighting style that allowed him to drastically change and manipulate the battlefield, as well as overwhelm opponents with a myriad of techniques.
Due to this assimilation, Kabuto's chakra reserves increased tremendously and were large enough that he was able to enter Sage Mode. A testament to his increased chakra reserves was his ability to summon and control dozens of reincarnated ninja at one time for up to two days, and summon Manda II, a snake even larger than Manda. After capturing Anko and absorbing Orochimaru's residual senjutsu chakra from her cursed seal, he became even more powerful.
- Main article: w:c:naruto:Taijutsu
While claiming to have lesser skill in taijutsu, Kabuto has shown himself to be proficient enough to hold his own against Tsunade, a skilled fighter known for her devastating strikes, after tiring her out and consuming a soldier pill. His main style of taijutsu is to use the chakra scalpel, which allows him to form his chakra into a blade and hit his target's muscles, pressure points, and other key points of their body. During his battle with Tsunade, she remarks that Kabuto's senses and sharpness may have surpassed hers in her prime. In battle, he first quickly assesses his opponent's strength and battle style to comprehend their movements, thereby allowing him to easily predict and dodge their attacks. He then uses his medical ninjutsu to systematically take down his opponent in order to disable and subdue them.
While in Sage Mode, Kabuto's physical abilities, such as his speed and reflexes, were enhanced to the point were he could both evade and repel multiple high-speed and powered attacks from both Sasuke and Itachi with relative ease, despite having his vision impaired. Not only that, but he was also able to attack Itachi before he could react or defend himself. His physical strength is also increased, enough to tear one of Itachi's arms off using nothing more than his bare teeth.
- Main article: w:c:naruto:Ninjutsu
Despite his young age, Kabuto has demonstrated tremendous skill in medical ninjutsu. With his extensive knowledge of medical ninjutsu and of the human body, Kabuto can quickly adjust to any damage done to his body and severely injure a person with a single chakra-infused strike to the chest. He has also developed the unique ability to be able to reactivate dead cells and grow new ones; the usage of this technique effectively during battle requires him to read his opponent's moves accurately in order to prepare the area of which he would apply the cell reconstruction, a feat that he is very capable of. Through his experiments on Karin's abilities and powerful life-force, Kabuto was able to gain her considerable regeneration abilities himself. He also often uses scalpels as throwing weapons instead of kunai. In Part II, Kabuto has apparently advanced his medical ninjutsu even further. He is capable of using the chakra scalpel without any hand seals, and still powerful enough to cut through wood and flesh with ease, and can use the Mystical Palm Technique at a distance.
Kabuto's prowess in medical ninjutsu has allowed him to develop a series of drugs with various effects. One instance would be the drugs given to Sasuke which aided in his training process. As shown with Manda II, he is also capable of genetically altering cloned organisms making them bigger and stronger than the original. Kabuto also invented a special drug capable of suppressing the power of a Wood Release user and a truth serum that allows him to interrogate enemies with ease. In the anime, Kabuto developed a drug capable of knocking Anko Mitarashi out, despite her having received treatment to be immune to poison while with Orochimaru.
Kabuto has demonstrated an unique affinity for corpses, and has an interest in being able to reanimate them. This is primarily convenient when he is experimenting with test subjects, though they have been used briefly in escape situations, and may be used in combat. Kabuto's expertise in medical ninjutsu is far-reaching enough for him to be able to create an almost perfect look-alike of a person from a corpse in very little time and under high pressure, and he keeps a sealing scroll to summon corpses; he mentioned to Orochimaru that he would like to keep his stock refilled after using one. Kabuto can even use the remains of a corpse to create a physically enhanced clone as he did with Manda by using the dead snake's cells and various drugs.
Kabuto is capable of using Earth Release to move underground. After infusing himself with the DNA of the Sound Four, he was capable of using Earth Release: Earth Shore Return through a manifestation of Jirōbō, which he used during his battle against Itachi and Sasuke to rid himself of a wall of Amaterasu. Kabuto has also demonstrated great skill with Water Release, as is capable of creating large torrents of water and even using the powerful Water Release: Water Dragon Bullet Technique without the extensive use of hand seals or an external water source. He was also capable of overwhelming Sasuke Uchiha's Fire Release: Great Fireball Technique; the latter was caught completely off-guard by this, despite being protected by his Susanoo.
After implanting Orochimaru's cells into his body, Kabuto gained all of his snake-oriented techniques and abilities, first exhibiting some of these skills to kill several Takigakure ninja with great ease using multiple snakes. He could also use the Hidden Shadow Snake Hands and its variants for a quick ambush attack. Another ability relating to his snake-theme was that Kabuto could shed his skin to turn into a white snake with arms, similar to Orochimaru's true form. While in this form, he could move at very fast speeds and even swallow a full-grown man whole.
In the anime, Kabuto developed clone snakes using Orochimaru's DNA. He could form several of these snakes into a larger snake for offensive usage or use them to recreate life, although the latter required an extensive amount of time if not used in the right place another weakness was that these snakes had a short lifespan, causing the created beings to perish in 48 hours. Kabuto could also perform a clone technique utilizing snakes and developed another breed of snakes that could absorb chakra. After being fully transformed by Orochimaru's DNA, a white snake extended from Kabuto's navel, which he was capable of using to telepathically communicate with other snakes. He was also capable of creating other white snakes of various sizes from his body, which could either separate from his body or remain attached to serve as additional appendages. Kabuto demonstrated the ability to alter the size of these snakes at will through the use of hand seals and could also hide within the snakes to conceal himself. As the snakes shared the same chakra as Kabuto himself, he was capable of using this method to hide from a user of the Sharingan, despite its ability to see chakra as colors. He could also transform his entire lower body into a white snake, as well as form additional snakes to act as makeshift legs.
To counteract genjutsu that are dependent upon eye contact, Kabuto could instead rely solely upon his snakes' ability to perceive their surroundings through sensing the ambient temperatures and smells using their tongues, rather than his own sight. Additionally, he could use the fangs of his snakes to inject drugs into others, as well as (in the anime) injecting them through the snake extending from his navel. After researching the Hōzuki clan's Hydrification Technique through Suigetsu, Kabuto altered it so that he could liquefy portions of his body at will using his body fluids. This ability, along with his regenerative qualities, extended to the white snakes that were generated directly from his body.
Kabuto has also displayed some skill with barrier ninjutsu, having erected one around his proximity during the 4th World War in order to hide his location. Kabuto appears to have passable skill in swordplay and, in the anime, he showed the ability to make himself invisible. He also had a scroll technique that allowed him to perform long distance communication with another person.
- Main article: w:c:naruto:Genjutsu
Kabuto has shown he is highly adept in genjutsu, having the skill to put an entire stadium of people asleep, minus those that were able to detect and deflect his Temple of Nirvana Technique in time. He could also utilize Tayuya's unique music based genjutsu Demonic Flute: Phantom Sound Chains after integrating her DNA into himself. With that technique, he could bind both Itachi and Sasuke at the same time and rendered them unable to break the genjutsu on their own despite their considerable prowess with illusions.
- Main article: w:c:naruto:Senjutsu
After Orochimaru's sealing, Kabuto travelled across the world and ultimately discovered the location of the Ryūchi Cave. There, he was taught senjutsu by the White Snake Sage where he gained access to a Sage Mode. Physically, Kabuto undergoes little alteration in this form, with the only visible changes being the markings around his eyes extending onto his back and the growth of four horns on the back of his head, as well as darkened sclerae. Sage Mode greatly enhances Kabuto's speed, perception and reflexes, to such an extent that he can easily dodge the arrows fired by Sasuke's Susanoo, which are noted for their tremendous speed. He also gained access to further snake anatomy, such as their brille, which allowed him to severely impair his opponents through the use of intense light whilst remaining completely unaffected himself. He is also capable of infusing life into inanimate objects and manipulating them, such as the surrounding terrain, making it very difficult to counter. His other ninjutsu, such as chakra scalpels become sharp enough to completely bisect a reincarnated shinobi's body with ease and block strikes from Sasuke's Kusanagi sword multiple times.
Like other Sage Mode users, Kabuto can only draw natural energy when immobile, which is usually an inviable option in direct combat. However due to the research and self-modifications based on Jūgo's clan's abilities, Kabuto's body can passively and continuously absorb natural energy without assistance, allowing him to potentially maintain his Sage Mode indefinitely. According to Kabuto, this meant that he was no longer a snake, but had instead transcended into a dragon.