Naruto Shippuden is one of the most successful animanga adaptations in history, from the mind of Masashi Kishimoto. It’s main character is Naruto Uzumaki, a ninja who seeks to become the most powerful ninja in his village – the Hokage.
Tsunade is one of the Hokage is Naruto Shippuden and is very much alive and well in the series appearing here and there throughout the series especially during the Fourth Shinobi World War which occurs at the end of the Naruto Shippuden series.
She is also a B-list character in both the manga and other adaptations of Naruto including the film etc. Her biggest role in the series is as the Fifth Hokage.
Many female fans loved Tsunade as she was a depiction of a strong and independent female character who was much more powerful than a lot of men in the series. Her confidence and understanding of good and evil made her a favourite among many fans of the show.
What Is A Hokage?
A Kage is a title for the most powerful ninja within that village. The Kage acts as a military leader during war times, and is a general protector of their subjects in their leadership of the village’s shinobi.
The Kage of each village differs, the ‘Hokage’ is the kage of the Hidden Leaf Village. There have been Seven Hokages in Konoha’s history, Naruto being the current and seventh.
Who Is Tsunade?
In the Hidden Leaf Village, Tsunade is regarded as one of the most powerful kunoichi, a female shinobi, and medical-nin in the world as well as Konoha. As a result she is regarded as one of the Senin.
The Senin is a special title awarded to specifically the three most powerful ninjas in Konoha’s history. The original Senin are: Tsunade, Orochimaru, and Jiraiya, who all trained under the first Hokage.
While Tsunade is actually quite old, she uses a transformation technique to make herself appear younger.
Tsunade was the granddaughter of the original, first Hokage of the Hidden Leaf Village, Hashirama Senju. As a result Tsunade is known as ‘Princess Tsunade’ colloquially.
Tsunade became addicted to gambling as a result of her Grandfather’s vices, while also revolutionising the world of Medical-ninjutsu. Tsunade has trained many kunoichi in the art of medical-nin including Sakura Haruno and Shizune in the series.
When we first meet Tsunade, at the start of the show, she has resigned to a life of gambling rather than the life of the shinobi as she has lost so many people close to her that she has become disillusioned with the art of shinobi.
Both her boyfriend and brother died in their pursuit of becoming Hokage.
Naruto is the only one who can reignite her faith in the way of the shinobi and startle her enough to return to Konoha and become the Fifth Hokage.
Naruto’s unyielding desire to become the Hokage illustrates the way of the shinobi is still strong, especially as Naruto attempts to fight her while he is still in ninja academy and loses out very quickly.
In her acceptance to take on the title of the Fifth Hokage she also takes on Sakura as her apprentice, as Orochimaaru takes on Sasuke, and Jiraiya takes on Naruto.
Tsunade generally avoids her duties as the Hokage and shifts them mainly onto her assistant and student Shizune. When Konoha comes under attack, though, Tsunade quickly takes her position very seriously.
Her healing abilities make her irreplaceable on the battlefield as she can cure any ailment and save shinobi who have been hurt in battle.
Her particular medical techniques are extremely useful in the Fourth Shinobi World War, for which she is the Hokage during the whole conflict.
Does Tsunade Die In Naruto Shippuden?
No, although she does come close at certain points. Before the outbreak of the Fourth Shinobi World War, Tsunade comes close to death and enters a coma by overusing her chakra.
Tsunade is sent out of the village by the other Kage as she scorns their lack of trust in Naruto. She connects with her summon, Katsuyu, so that she can channel all the villagers’ health through her.
This allows Tsunade to heal the villagers and shinobi remotely, but uses all her chakra and renders her immobile. During a battle with Pain’s Deva Path, as he tried to destroy the whole of Konoha, she protects the village with all her chakra which she completely drains.
Naruto saves her from an attack and she entrusts Naruto with the defeat of the Six Paths of Pain and as Naruto leaves she enters a coma due to all her chakra being depleted.
While some fans may think that Tsunade is dead, she is simply in a coma.
After a few episodes, and after Naruto has defeated Pain, she wakes up from her coma to the commencement of the Fourth Shinobi World War and the formation of the Allied Shinobi Forces against the evil Ataksuki crime organisation.
Tsunade almost dies during the ending of the Fourth Shinobi World War as she gets bisected mid battle. While she is immobilised by the bisection, she can still summon Katsuyu, through her summon she attempts to heal the rest of the Kage who have died during battle.
Orochimaru, one of the defected Senin, actually helps Tsunade replenish her chakra so that she can heal herself and the rest of the Kage.
Sakura and Tsunade combine powers in order to rejuvenate the rest of the shinobi as they fight the last battle of the Fourth Shinobi War, meanwhile Naruto and Sasuke have their final fight.
What Happens To Tsunade, Then?
After the Fourth Shinobi World War ends, Tsunade has seen enough action as Hokage and gives up her title, retiring as a kunoichi indefinitely.
While Naruto is still a genin and too young to become Hokage, even though his actions in the war cemented his destiny to eventually take up this position, Kakashi assumes the temporary role as Hokage until Naruto is ready.
Although for a while Kakshi cannot take the role of Hokage as he is busy with other things, Tsunade spends much time assuming his duties and pushes pressure upon Kakashi to take the role from her.
After the war, Tsunade studies Medical-Ninjutsu further so that she can create prosthetic arms for both Naruto and Sasuke, while Naruto accepts Sasuke does not. This is one of her last real roles within the Naruto Shippuden series.
In the future Naruto manga and series, that list events after the end of the Fourth Shinobi World War, Tsunade’s most notable appearance is at the wedding of Naruto and Hinata.
So as we learned, Tsunade is one of the most powerful ninjas in Konoha and has her own place in its history as a successful Hokage. Tsunade is pivotal in defeating the Ataksuki clan through her healing powers and mastery of medical-nin.
She is the longest running Hokage in Naruto, purely because she gets the most screen time out of all the Hokage, so has stayed in the memory of fans for a long time.
While she doesnt die, many fans may misremember that she had as when she retires after the war she takes a backseat as a shinobi.