|春野サクラ Haruno Sakura
|Manga||Volume #1, Naruto Chapter #3|
|Anime||Naruto Episode #1|
|Novel||Naruto: Innocent Heart, Demonic Blood|
|Movie||Naruto the Movie: Ninja Clash in the Land of Snow|
|Game||Naruto: Konoha Ninpōchō|
|OVA||Find the Four-Leaf Red Clover!|
|Appears in||Anime, Manga, Novel, Game, Movie|
|Academy Grad. Age||12|
|Chūnin Prom. Age||14|
During her early years in the Ninja Academy, Sakura was frequently bullied by others due to her large forehead. To try and combat this, Sakura used her bangs to hide her forehead, fuelling the other kids' teasing by indicating she was sensitive about it. Ino Yamanaka, realizing this, helped Sakura by giving her a ribbon that she used as a way of drawing attention to the cuter features of her forehead, which helped Sakura overcome her phobia. The two became good friends and Sakura grew more confident, developing her own unique personality under Ino's guidance. Despite this, Sakura felt that she was living in Ino's shadow and longed to prove herself as Ino's equal. Later, when the two girls eventually realized that they were both infatuated with Sasuke, Sakura ended their friendship so that they could properly compete for Sasuke's affection, thus beginning a bitter rivalry between the two.
At the start of the series, Sakura had a deep infatuation for Sasuke Uchiha, rooted primarily in his good looks, cunning, cool attitude, and prodigious talents. For that reason, many of Sakura's early appearances are dedicated to her continuing efforts to win his affection. As the story progresses, she begins to recognize that Sasuke is a real person with imperfections, and develops a more sincere desire to be there for him. Sakura also develops a concern that Sasuke will someday abandon her and the rest of Konohagakure in his quest for power. When her fears come true at the end of Part I, Sakura does all that she can to stop Sasuke from leaving, such as professing her love for him and offering to join him. Though touched by her words, they do not stop Sasuke from defecting from Konoha. Since then, Sakura has made her personal goal to bring Sasuke home, which becomes a recurring component of her role in Part II. Although she still worries about his well-being and doesn't tolerate others insulting Sasuke, Sakura is willing to attack him if it means returning him to Konoha. However, after hearing that Sasuke has attacked Kumogakure and abducted Killer Bee, Sakura was persuaded by Shikamaru Nara to take actions to stop Sasuke from causing any potential war, at all costs.
Sakura's relationship with Naruto Uzumaki, like with Sasuke, also changes throughout the series. When first teamed up together, Sakura viewed Naruto as a talentless idiot who deliberately tried to ruin her life, the result of Naruto's efforts to win her heart interfering with her similar efforts with Sasuke. However, as the story progresses and Naruto continuously shows his worth as a ninja as well as his dedication to his teammates, Sakura realizes that her initial perceptions of him were wrong. After Sasuke defects from Konoha, Sakura pleads to Naruto, believing him to be the only one capable of bringing Sasuke back. Although Naruto fails and is left in the hospital afterwards, he vows to someday complete the task she has given him. Realizing the lengths Naruto will go to for her, Sakura spends the next three years training with Tsunade, Mastering the arts of medical ninjustu and getting stronger so.. that she can join Naruto in his quest to bring Sasuke back, determined not to be useless like she was before. In Part II, Sakura learns of the various hardships Naruto faces: the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox and Akatsuki. Saddened by the impact both forces have had on his life, Sakura becomes protective of Naruto and tries to do whatever she can to help him overcome these obstacles. Sakura grows to be very close to and fond of Naruto, due to their spending a lot of time together. Yamato and Sai have separately suggested that Sakura's feelings for Naruto are more than mere friendship, but the specifics have yet to be detailed. After learning from Sai that Naruto loves her, Sakura was initially filled with great guilt over the pain she had caused him, but eventually resolved to confront him on the matter. When she does confront him, Sakura confesses to Naruto that she loves him, but Naruto does not believe her, merely taking the confession as a joke and saying it is not funny. Sakura then claimed her reasons for loving him, but Naruto, still not believing her, told her that he hated people who lie to themselves.
Unlike the rest of Team 7, Sakura is the only one of the four members who has not suffered any heavy losses. Therefore, things that her teammates desire, such as family and friends, Sakura took for granted. Also, Sakura is quite outspoken, as when she doesn't understand something or if it bothers her, she tends to practically yell out in questioning or complaining to someone. However, all of this seemed to change by Part II, as she becomes more knowledgeable towards Naruto and Sasuke's sufferings, and tries to ease them. As her personality matures, she also shouts less, but still questions unknown situations plenty.
Within Sakura resides "Inner Sakura" (内なるサクラ, Uchi Naru Sakura), a manifestation of her inner emotions. In addition to comic relief, Inner Sakura represents Sakura's actual opinion on things when she outwardly displays something opposite. Inner Sakura's appearances are typically marked by an exclamation of "Shānnarō!" (しゃーんなろー). The phrase has no literal meaning, but is usually translated as "Hell yeah!", "Hell no!", or "Damn it!", depending on the situation. The English anime, for censorship reasons, replaced the aforementioned phrases with a forceful "Cha!". Inner Sakura is unique as it is in a way a second will within Sakura's mind. When Ino used the Mind Body Switch Technique on her, Inner Sakura was able to repel the user from her body, suggesting that Inner Sakura is a split personality. Although she appears quite frequently at the start of the series, Inner Sakura all but disappears midway through Part I, her only other subsequent appearance being at the start of Part II. Sakura, likewise, now performs the emotional, violent outbursts she once relied on Inner Sakura for, much to the dismay of those who are around her at the time.
Sakura has bright pink hair, green eyes, and fair skin. In Part I, Sakura wore a red qipao dress with white circular designs, tight dark green shorts, and a forehead protector which she used to accent her face. In Part II, Sakura, now a Chunin, has acquired a new outfit consisting of the same basic red top as in Part I, with black gloves, black high-heeled boots, black shorts, short pink apron-like skirt, and pink elbow protectors.
Sakura is now also armed with a Chunin's Tantō (along with Shikamaru Nara and Ino, which she wears above her Medical Pouch, but she has never been seen using it in combat). The cloth of her forehead protector has also changed to red in color. When she's not on a mission, she wears her regular red shirt, with a light yellow shirt under it, and a navy-colored skirt. In this outfit, she still wears her sandals.
Another notable trait of Sakura's appearance is her hair. At the series' beginning, Sakura's hair was very long (when she was young, there was a rumor that Sasuke was attracted to girls with long hair). After Sakura was forced to protect the unconscious bodies of Sasuke and Naruto after their battle with Orochimaru, Kin Tsuchi grabbed Sakura's hair and taunted her for paying more attention to her appearance than practicing her jutsu. Kin kept Sakura captive, holding her tightly by the hair and forcing her to watch Zaku Abumi attack Lee. This caused Sakura to cut her hair to release Kin's hold on her, and determinedly attacking Team Dosu with a new goal of surpassing her teammates. Sakura has kept her new, shoulder-length hairstyle for the rest of the series. Later, during the time skip, she grows her hair again, as shown in a flashback, but later cuts it.
Upon being assigned as a member of Team 7, Sakura spent much of her time trying to appeal to Sasuke, despite the fact that Sasuke had no interest in her and had a habit of belittling her. All the while, Naruto tried to appeal to Sakura, despite the fact that she had no interest in him and degraded him whenever given the opportunity. As such, when Kakashi administered a test on the three to see if they would be allowed to become Genin, Sakura preoccupied herself with following Sasuke instead of helping Naruto.
After Kakashi lectured Sakura for this, as well as Naruto and Sasuke for their respective faults, Sakura realized that if they were to become Genin, they would need to work as a team, even if that meant breaking the rules. This revelation having been the goal of the test, Kakashi passed the three, Team 7 being the first group to have ever passed his test.
Land of Waves arc
Sakura accompanied the rest of her team on their first mission to the Land of Waves, to act as bodyguards for Tazuna. While there, Kakashi administers a Tree Climbing Practice, and Sakura masters the exercise on her first try. This leaves her in charge of escorting Tazuna while Naruto and Sasuke complete the training. When they are later attacked by Zabuza and Haku, Sakura protects Tazuna while Kakashi, Naruto, and Sasuke battle the enemy. After hearing that Sasuke was apparently killed, Sakura violated Shinobi Rule #25 of not showing any kind of emotions by crying for Sasuke's loss even as she recited it. When Sasuke turned out to have only been in a death-trance, Sakura was relieved that he was alive. Once their mission was completed, Team 7 returned to Konoha.
Chunin Exam arc
When Team 7 is entered into the Chunin Exams, Sakura is reluctant to participate because she feels she is too weak. With some reassurance from Sasuke, she agrees to enter. During the first, written portion of the exam, Sakura is one of the few examinees that is able to answer the questions without cheating. She instead spends her time lamenting that Naruto is probably too stupid to answer the questions or know that he is supposed to cheat, and contemplates forfeiting so that he doesn't need to embarrass himself. After seeing Naruto's confidence in himself, she decides against it, and they pass the first phase.
Soon after the start of the second phase of the Chunin Exams, Team 7 was attacked by Orochimaru. Although Naruto and Sasuke did their best to defeat Orochimaru, both were rendered unconscious, and Sakura was left to take care of them. When they were attacked by a group of Sound Genin sent by Orochimaru to kill Sasuke, Sakura tried to defeat them with some traps she had pre-prepared, though the group easily avoided her efforts. Just as the Sound Genin were about to turn their attention to Sakura, Rock Lee came to her rescue, determined to protect Sakura at all costs. Despite his best efforts, Lee was defeated, and the Sound Genin again turned their attention to Sakura. Kin Tsuchi immobilized Sakura by grabbing her hair, scolding her for putting more effort into her looks than her abilities as a ninja.
Distraught that people were always fighting for her because she couldn't fight for herself, Sakura resolved to better herself as a ninja. Cutting off her hair to release herself from Kin's grasp, Sakura did what she could to fend off the Sound Genin, even going so far as biting to make sure that she couldn't be easily repelled. This display spurred Ino and her team into coming to Sakura's aid, allowing her some rest. The unconscious Sasuke re-awakened after receiving Orochimaru's cursed seal, and immediately asked Sakura who injured her. Quickly overcome by his new Cursed Seal, he began a violent rampage on the Sound ninja who were present. Frightened by his new behavior and after having realized that "this is not Sasuke", a tearful Sakura rushed to his side and embraced him, begging him to stop. Her words and embrace got through to him, and his Cursed Seal quickly receded.
In the preliminary matches of the exam, Sakura was pitted against Ino. After Sakura and Ino exchanged insults, Ino followed Sakura's earlier example and cut her hair, leading Sakura to believe that Ino had lost her mind. In actuality, Ino cut her hair to help her in battle; by sending chakra into her cut hair, Ino was able to tie Sakura in place, allowing her slow-moving Mind Body Switch Technique to have no difficulties in finding its target. After taking control of Sakura's body, Ino tried to force Sakura to forfeit, but thanks to Naruto's cheering, Inner Sakura was able to force Ino from her body before she could do so. With both girls exhausted from the amount of effort they'd been putting into their fight, Ino and Sakura charged at each other to deal final blows. Striking each other simultaneously, both were knocked out, leading to a draw. As the two recovered, Ino and Sakura began to rekindle their friendship.
Invasion of Konoha arc
A month later, while watching Naruto and Sasuke's matches during the finals and marveling at how their abilities had improved, the invasion of Konoha began. Sakura was able to repel the sleep inducing genjutsu that spread throughout the stadium. Because of this, and because Sasuke had pursued Gaara, Kakashi tasked Sakura with waking and assembling a team to go after him. Upon catching up with Sasuke, Sakura protected him from Gaara's attacks, risking her life to put herself between him and danger. Gaara used his sand to immobilize her, and as the sand slowly suffocated Sakura, Naruto fought to defeat Gaara using Sakura as inspiration to not give up, and save her. After Naruto defeated Gaara, Sakura was freed. Later, Sakura thanked Sasuke for saving her, but he explained to her that it was Naruto who had saved her, and she turned to smile at Naruto, not noticing the jealous scowl on Sasuke's face as she did so.
Sasuke Retrieval arc
As time goes by and Sasuke's lust for power grows stronger, Sakura grows concerned that he may abandon Konoha to seek out Orochimaru. Although she spends as much time with him as she can in an effort to deter him from this path, Sasuke finally defects. Having suspected this would happen, Sakura met him at the village's exit, doing what she could to stop him. When it seemed that he was still going to leave, Sakura declared that she was in love with him. She said she would do anything for him, even offering to help him in his quest for power, so long as she could be with him. Sasuke then turned to her and called her annoying but smirked as he did so. Sakura then threatened to scream and alert the village of his betrayal. Sasuke, apparently affected by her words and tears, gave her a soft "thank you" before knocking her unconscious and leaving the village. When she awakens the following morning she tells Lady Tsunade about his departure, to which afterward Tsunade assembles the Sasuke retrieval squad. Consisting of Shikamaru, Neji, Kiba, Choji, and Naruto to go after him.
When Naruto set out the next day to retrieve Sasuke, Sakura came out to meet him. Sakura begged for Naruto to bring Sasuke back, believing Naruto to be the only person who could get through to Sasuke. Naruto, looking at the crying Sakura, promised her that he would bring Sasuke back, making it his promise to her for a lifetime. This brought more tears as Sakura realized that Naruto knew how she felt and that he had always been there for her.
After Naruto failed to bring Sasuke back and was left hospitalized in the process, he apologized to Sakura for his failure and asserted that he would definitely keep his promise. Inspired by Naruto's determination, she replied that, next time, they would retrieve Sasuke together, and that she would be there to help him from now on. Determined to never be useless again, and to save Sasuke and help Naruto, Sakura then asked to become Tsunade's apprentice, a request which Tsunade happily accepted.
Pre-Shippūden filler arcs
Little was seen of Sakura during the filler arcs, much of her time being preoccupied with training. When she did go out on missions with her fellow Genin, Sakura served as the medical specialist, healing the wounds of others and examining bodies. Ino, jealous of Sakura's newfound healing abilities, asked to train with Sakura to be a medical ninja. To Ino's dismay, Sakura immediately proclaimed that Ino would be her junior during the course of the training.
After Naruto returned from his two and a half years of training abroad, Sakura was one of the first villagers to greet him, and was happy to see him, even noticing he was now taller than she. However, this doesn't last long, as Sakura asked him if she had changed, and gotten prettier, to which he responds she hadn't and that she was the same old Sakura. The results of her training with Tsunade first show themselves when she punches Naruto for attempting to demonstrate a new perverted jutsu for Konohamaru. Kakashi soon recruited both of them into Team Kakashi and issued another bell test, this time the goal actually being to take the bells. Both are able to show off their new abilities. She shocks Kakashi and Naruto when she uses her super strength granted to her by Tsunade, but in the end are only able to take the bells by tricking Kakashi.
Rescue Gaara arc
After returning from the bell test, they learned that Akatsuki had captured Gaara. Team Kakashi was assigned to go to Sunagakure to help rescue him. Upon arriving in Sunagakure, Sakura used her new medical expertise to save Kankuro from a poison given to him by the Akatsuki member Sasori. Sakura then made a few antidotes to counteract the poison in case anyone on the team should have need of it. The antidote in hand, Team Kakashi followed Akatsuki's trail, accompanied by Chiyo, a Sunagakure adviser.
Once they arrived at the Akatsuki lair, the team split up, Chiyo and Sakura fighting Sasori while Kakashi and Naruto went after Deidara and Gaara's body. With both Sasori and Chiyo being master puppeteers, and with all of Sasori's attacks being imbued with his poison, Chiyo controlled Sakura like a puppet to improve her dexterity. This, combined with the analysis of Sasori's movements gained from her training with Tsunade, allowed Sakura to land a number of successful attacks on him. To cut off the help Sakura was getting from Chiyo, Sasori tried to kill Chiyo, only for Sakura to step in as a human shield. With him being distracted, Chiyo stabbed Sasori through the heart. As his life waned, he relished the fact that Sakura would die too, only to be proven wrong by the combination of Sakura's antidote and Chiyo's healing abilities. As a reward to Sakura for surviving, Sasori told Sakura of a spy within Orochimaru's ranks with his last breath.
When they caught up with Naruto and Kakashi, Sakura tried to revive Gaara, only to discover that he was already dead. As Chiyo surrendered the rest of her energy to resurrect Gaara, she tells Sakura not to give her life for an old woman and that someday she would surpass her master as a kunoichi. After attending Chiyo's funeral, the team returned home.
Sasuke and Sai arc
With the information gained from Sasori, Team Kakashi decided to use this as an opportunity to find Sasuke. Because Kakashi was still bedridden after his encounter with Deidara, Yamato led the team instead. Sai was also added to the team as Sasuke's replacement, but neither Naruto or Sakura were willing to view him as such, and had difficulties getting along with him. In fact Sakura even punched him for insulting Sasuke. Their mission being to meet with and capture the spy, Yamato, disguised as Sasori, went on ahead. When the spy, Kabuto Yakushi, ended up being in league with Orochimaru, Yamato called in the team for back up.
Naruto quickly engaged Orochimaru in combat, and Sakura was surprised by the danger of his tailed transformations. She was then knocked out after Kabuto was thrown away by Naruto and slammed into her. After regaining consciousness, she realized that Naruto had advanced to a four-tailed form. When Sakura approached him to provide assistance, he attacked and injured her, unaware of his actions. She was then healed by Kabuto, pointing out that they aren't that different and Akatsuki is also a thorn in their sides. Once Yamato forced the Nine-Tails' influence to recede, Sakura tended to his wounds and lamented that all she could do is heal him after a battle. He recuperated, and they continued on to Orochimaru's hideout, where Sai finally proved his worth by helping them find Sasuke. When they were unable to persuade Sasuke to come home with them they attacked him instead, but this was also ineffective. Sasuke escaped and, defeated, the team returned home.
Fire Temple arc
In the anime, Team Yamato was sent to the Fire Temple to investigate the grave robbings of some of the former Twelve Ninja Guardian. While trying to apprehend the grave robbers, they were drawn into a trap, and their team was split up. Sakura was attacked by a giant spider but was saved by Sai, and together they found Naruto and rescued him from Fuka's soul absorbing power (although Sakura furiously thought Naruto was making out with the enemy).
Later, during the attack on Konoha, Sakura did her part as medical ninja, healing all injured people she came across until she was told to aid Asuma at the power plant. There she discovered that the four Ninja Guardians had been resurrected in order to destroy the village, and Asuma sent her to stop one of the four. She was intercepted by Fuen, who trapped her in a unique genjutsu. However, Sakura had already analyzed Fuen's attack patterns, and devised a counter-maneuver. She then tricked Fuen into revealing herself, allowing Sakura to strike her, causing Fuen's defensive barrier around Konoha to disappear. She returned to Asuma, and found Naruto struggling with the Nine-Tails' chakra once again. Trying to heal Naruto, she jumps in when Sora fires a powerful beam to them. Naruto saves her by pushing her to the ground and covering her. After he overcame it, she healed his injuries.
Hidan and Kakuzu arc
Team Yamato was sent to provide back up for Team 10 during their battle with Akatsuki. Because Shikamaru was separated from the rest of the group, Sai and Sakura were sent to provide assistance for him, though upon arrival they found that Shikamaru had already defeated his opponent. Having not taken part in the battle, Sakura returned to Konoha with the others, and later healed the damage to Naruto's arm from the use of his new jutsu. Because this made it difficult for him to eat, she offered to feed him. Though he was delighted by the idea, interference from both Sai and Kakashi prevented this from happening.
Three-Tails Arrival arc
In the anime, the team was once again sent to provide back up, this time for Team 8. After locating them and discovering Hinata to have been captured, Sakura watched as Naruto rescued her and helped her recover afterwards. After rejoining her team and learning that the Three-Tailed Giant Turtle had appeared, Sakura was added to a team meant to seal the beast. When their efforts kept being stopped by Orochimaru's forces, more skilled ANBU members replaced them and they returned home.
Hunt for Itachi arc
When news reached Konoha that Sasuke had killed Orochimaru, Sakura and Naruto were the first to join Kakashi's Eight Man Squad, and began the hunt. During her search, she barely missed a member of Sasuke's Taka, Karin, and followed Deidara's suicide explosion to regroup. When Kiba caught Sasuke's scent, the group followed until they encountered Deidara's former partner, Tobi. Sakura initially suspected that he was using genjutsu or clone techniques, but after Hinata pointed out that his chakra remained in one location and Tobi managed to escape Shino's bugs, she realized that he was removing parts of his body from existence. She attempted to head to Sasuke's location with her team, but Tobi had already taken him away.
Invasion of Pain arc
Once they returned to Konoha and learned of Jiraiya's death, Sakura tried to comfort both Naruto and Tsunade. When Naruto blamed Tsunade for the death of Jiraiya, Sakura scolded him. She was then shocked to hear Naruto declare that he would get his revenge. She later tried to help decipher Jiraiya's dying message to find out more about the Akatsuki leader, Pain, but was interrupted by Pain's attack on the village. After saving some villagers Sakura went to the Konoha hospital, defending the building and healing what injuries she could.
When Pain destroyed the village, Sakura was saved by Katsuyu. When she sees the village in ruins she calls out for Naruto to return to save everyone. After Naruto's return Sakura could only watch as Naruto tried to defeat the six Pains. She became worried when Naruto entered a six-tailed state, and was amazed to find out that Hinata risked her life to try and save Naruto. She heals Hinata afterwards and watches as Pain, defeated and converted by Naruto, revives all those who had died during his attack.
Five Kage Summit arc
Sakura accompanies the rest of the village in welcoming Naruto back from his meeting with Pain. First she punches him, but then tearfully hugs him and thanks him. She was then devastated to tell Naruto and the others that she and Shizune couldn't do anything else for Tsunade, who is left in a comatose state. She tried to cheer Naruto up after what happened to Tsunade, but they were later called by Tazuna and Inari, who complimented her appearance, causing her to blush. Tazuna then looked for Sasuke but Naruto stated that he had been gone for a while and that he would bring him back, causing Sakura to look relieved.
Soon afterwards, Sakura and Naruto learn that Danzo has become the new Hokage and that he has ordered Sasuke be executed as a missing-nin. They contemplate how to convince Danzo to change his mind, but Kakashi advises them against it. While asking Sai about Danzo they are confronted by Omoi and Karui. The Kumogakure ninja inform them of Sasuke's crimes and demand any information they may have on Sasuke. Seeing how upset this makes Sakura, Naruto volunteers to tell them for her.
Naruto, with Kakashi and Yamato, go to the Land of Iron to ask the current Raikage to forgive Sasuke. While they are gone, Sai informs Sakura of the lengths Naruto has gone to to make her happy. He also says that although Naruto loves her, the strain of trying to bring Sasuke home and fulfill the promise he made to her cause him nothing but pain. Shikamaru joins the conversation on behalf of the other members of the Konoha 11, telling Sakura that Sasuke's actions will only lead to war. Believing that the best course of action would be for them to personally stop Sasuke, Shikamaru asks for Team 7's consent. Sakura tearfully agrees.
Because Naruto loves her and because of the suffering she causes him, Sakura decides to be the one to tell him of their decision. She, Sai, Kiba, and Lee go to the Land of Iron to see Naruto. There, she tells him she loves him surprising Naruto and the others. Sakura then says that she's forgotten Sasuke, and that Naruto can forget the promise he made her. Naruto, becoming more upset as the conversation goes on, proclaims that he dislikes people who lie to themselves. Sakura becomes upset with Naruto, saying that he might get killed while looking for Sasuke, but then Naruto tells her that he doesn't want to bring back Sasuke because of her, he wants to do it by his own will. Sakura then leaves with the rest of the team with an angry expression on her face, about to cry, Sakura tells Kiba that from now on, she wants to look for Sasuke.
Ninja Clash in the Land of Snow
Sakura joined her fellow members of Team 7 on a mission to protect the actress Yukie Fujikaze, as she and the production group she worked for traveled to the Land of Snow. Throughout the movie, Sakura encountered the snow-nin Mizore Fuyukuma, and eventually distracted him with her Sakura Blizzard Technique. She was later seen looking out at the newly created Spring country, holding Sasuke's head in her lap.
Legend of the Stone of Gelel
Sakura was sent out on a team with Naruto and Shikamaru to deliver a pet ferret to a village where its rightful owners could pick it up. After arriving and finding the village in ruins, they were attacked by mysterious warriors led by Temujin, a knight wielding the power of the Stone of Gelel. Their conflict with him resulted in Sakura and Shikamaru becoming separated from Naruto, only to rejoin him later after several conflicts with Temujin's allies. During a final battle with the wolf-like Fugai, Sakura killed her by using metal pillars to reflect her ear-splitting howl, which caused the pillars to collapse in on her.
Guardians of the Crescent Moon Kingdom
Sakura was assigned along with Naruto and Rock Lee to protect the Land of the Moon's prince during his world trip. Sakura displayed some of the immense strength learned from Tsunade by destroying a wall with a single punch, and her improved taijutsu skills during a fight with genjutsu user Karenbana, who was hired to kill the prince. For Sakura's second fight with Karenbana she could tell where she was because she could smell her perfume. Sakura was almost knocked out during her first encounter with Karenbana. During her second encounter with Karenbana, Sakura got trapped in Karenbana's genjutsu technique, resulting in her being knocked out by Karenbana, then after waking up (before the final blow) she shattered a chandelier above the two combatants' heads with a thrown shuriken, causing glass to fall on the floor. Sakura was then able to hear Karenbana's movements by the sound of the glass crunching under her feet. Sakura delivered a bone-crushing punch to Karenbana's jaw, ending the genjutsu and the fight.
Shippūden the Movie
Sakura was assigned to protect and escort Shion, the head priestess of the Land of Demons, to the tomb of the ancient demon Mōryō. To aid her in this mission, she was joined by Naruto, Rock Lee, and Neji (who was assigned as team captain). Upon their arrival at the temple, Sakura and her team were forced to face off against a group of ninja, with unusually powerful mastery of elemental ninjutsu. Sakura used her tremendous strength to aid Lee in fighting them off as Neji went in search for the priestess.
During the journey to Mōryō's tomb, Sakura was put in charge of carrying Shion, something the latter claimed was very uncomfortable (causing Sakura to go into a fit of rage), but she was paralyzed after Kusuna injected her with his Secret Anesthesia, causing her to fall off a tree, but luckily Neji caught her and had enough time to recover. After a hard battle with Shizuku, Sakura was able to join her team in taking down their opponents by first tricking them into using up their medically-enhanced chakra.
Shippūden the Movie 2: Bonds
Sakura was first seen at a hospital during/after the attack on Konoha, and commenting on the injured villagers who had been saved by the mysterious old man, Shinnō. Sakura was assigned with Naruto and Hinata to escort a boy (who was really a girl) named Amaru, and Shinnō, her sensei, back to their village. During their journey, Sakura and Naruto were separated from Hinata. They both then found the Zero-Tailed Masked Leech, that fed on the darkness of human souls and somehow took over Amaru's body. Sakura tried to fight it, but was defeated easily. She was then left behind when the ruins began to fly away, and only reappeared at the end to watch the ruins explode from Naruto's repeated Rasengan attacks.
At the start of the series, Sakura's only defining characteristic was her intelligence, largely due to her interest in memorizing things and her success with taking quizzes while in the Academy. Because of this, Sakura was shown to have very keen talent for observation and analyzing. Through this, she could easily see through most basic deceptions an opponent may use on her.
Because she had focused so much on her book studies, it greatly affected her physical performance. While in the Academy, she excelled in basic practice of ninjutsu and kunoichi training, but her prowess in combat was much weaker. Her stamina and fighting skills were below average, making her not very helpful during battles. However, in Part II, after receiving two and a half years of training from Tsunade, Sakura's abilities have greatly increased, to the point where she was able to hold her own against powerful enemies such as Sasori.
Sakura has been noted to have a natural affinity for genjutsu, though her only experience with genjutsu is dispelling it.
Soon after the start of her first mission, Sakura discovered that she had an excellent control over her chakra, and as such she had an innate ability to use jutsu to their maximum efficiency without wasting any chakra. While this particular ability was never put to great use in Part I, her chakra control became a focal point of Sakura's fighting style in Part II, as it helped her to concentrate chakra to her fists to reduce things to rubble by a simple punch.
Sakura's natural control of her chakra had been taken to new heights over the time skip, an ability utilized to its fullest by the training she had done with Tsunade. With her excellent chakra control, Sakura had turned into an excellent combat medical-nin, and had shown herself to be able to heal fatal injuries with relatively little effort, even when more experienced medics would deem it a lost cause.
In her training to become a medic-nin, Sakura had also acquired the ability to pick up on an enemy's movements in a short period of time, as a good field medic needs to be able to do to survive a battle and avoid injury if he or she is to fulfill his or her purpose and heal other members of his or her team. This ability allowed her to predict what attack an opponent would use seconds before an attack and then dodge it quickly and easily.
In close combat, Sakura's taijutsu skills have seen tremendous growth thanks to Tsunade's constant battle drills to better protect herself should she find it impossible to avoid battle. To further aid her in that situation, she can rely on the super strength taught to her by Tsunade.
By building up and releasing her chakra with precise timing, Sakura could easily decimate any obstacle and turn it to rubble. An opponent struck by her full strength could suffer from anything ranging from instant death, broken bones, ruptured organs, or any other wound associated with intense blunt force trauma.
Over time and through repeated use, Sakura had become able to use this strength instinctively and did not need to put any effort into using it. Her strength, coupled with her medical expertise and the beauty she gained over the time skip, had caused many to see Sakura as another Tsunade.
Creation and Conception
Although Sakura is the most recurring female character in Naruto, Masashi Kishimoto did not originally intend for Sakura to be the heroine of the series. Kishimoto attributes this to his being unable to draw good heroine characters, and fashioned Sakura as a girl who cannot understand men, the best example of a heroine he could come up with. Sakura's creation is a result of Kishimoto's desire to make a somewhat irritating character who was well-intentioned. Despite these elements, Kishimoto is fond of Sakura, as he feels that many of her personality traits are common among all people, thus giving her a sense of real humanity.
When designing Sakura, Kishimoto focused on her silhouette and created a costume as simple as possible. This is a divergence from the other main characters of the series, whose costumes are very detailed. The leggings are the most notable aspect of her design, as they are meant to show that she is very active. At the start of the series her leggings extended below her knees and closely resembled trousers. As Part I progressed, the leggings became increasingly shorter and tighter. Similar to his inexperience with drawing heroines, Kishimoto lacked the experience needed to make Sakura "cute" when he first began drawing her. Although he implies that her appearance has become cuter since then, Kishimoto and much of the Naruto manga staff agree that Sakura was "far from cute" at the start of the series.
Sakura's most well-known physical characteristic is her broad forehead. Because of this, Kishimoto at times focuses too much effort on drawing it in scenes or promotional artwork where Sakura is featured prominently. This results in her forehead appearing too large. When designing Sakura in her Part II appearance, Kishimoto decided to change her clothes to a more lively karate suit style. The upper part, though, still has a Chinaesque feeling to it, so as to make her more feminine.
- The name "Haruno" means "spring field", and "Sakura" means "cherry blossom", which is cherished in Japan due to its beauty and almost tragically short life span (cherry blossoms have historically been associated with the samurai). In Japanese, "Haruno Sakura" (春野・桜) means "spring field of cherry blossoms", which may be an origin of the name. It can be also used in the game, Hanafuda, as a month card of sakura (桜, flowering cherry).
- In the June 2006 issue of Shonen Jump, Kishimoto stated that Sakura would be the best ninja instructor out of Team 7 and is the closest to being normal, despite having flaws in her personality.
- In the Ultimate Ninja, Clash of Ninja, and Path of the Ninja video games, Inner Sakura is used as a jutsu due to Sakura's lack of jutsu of her own. Sakura has also shown a talent for genjutsu some video game appearances, most involving Inner Sakura.
- In the Naruto character popularity polls, Sakura was placed 5th in the first, 14th in the second, 9th in the third, 10th in the fourth, 8th in the fifth, and 12th in the sixth. She finished 6th in the seventh and most recent with 9,701 votes.
- Sakura had one of the longest battle times in the anime (8 full episodes), giving her roughly about 4 hours of battle screentime. This is when she and Chiyo were fighting Sasori.
- Sakura is the first one of the original Team 7 to defeat an active Akatsuki member, Naruto being the second, and Sasuke the third, even though none of them delivered the final blow. Chiyo finished off Sasori; Kakashi finished off Kakuzu; and Deidara, Itachi, and Nagato died by their own techniques (Itachi from over exerting himself).
- Sakura is the only character aside from Naruto to appear in all movies.
- According to the Naruto databook:
- Sakura's hobbies are playing trivia and memorization.
- Sakura wishes for a rematch with Ino.
- Sakura's favorite foods are syrup-coated anko dumplings, umeboshi, and anmitsu, while her least favorites are anything spicy.
- Sakura has completed 34 official missions in total: 12 D-rank, 9 C-rank, 6 B-rank, 7 A-rank, 0 S-rank (although in a filler arc, Sakura and Naruto went on an S-rank mission with Jiraiya to locate Sasuke in Orochimaru's lair).
- Sakura's registration number is 012601.
- Sakura's favorite word is "courage" (勇気, yūki).
- (To Ino) "Didn't you know? Women have to be strong in order to survive!"
- "I will get stronger as long as I continue to try!"
- "I won't be a hindrance to you any more!"
- "I've always considered myself to be a true ninja... but those were just empty words, because Sasuke-kun and Naruto were always in the lead! But now it's my turn to take the lead, and all of you can watch me from the background!"
- (About Naruto) "I'm the one who made Naruto suffer the most... I've just been getting it wrong... just been screwing it up... I don't want to get it wrong anymore... don't want to screw it up anymore."
- (To Naruto) "Naruto... I said I love you!"
- ↑ Rin no Sho, pages 100-105
- ↑ Tō no Sho, pages 130-135
- ↑ Shō no Sho, page 9
- ↑ Sha no Sho, pages 136-142
- ↑ Jin no Sho, pages 143-145
- ↑ Retsu no Sho, pages 22-23
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Zai no Sho, page 32
- ↑ Naruto chapter 71, page 7
- ↑ Naruto chapter 245, page 19
- ↑ Naruto chapter 252, pages 05-06
- ↑ Naruto chapter 297, pages 11-12