How Did Danzo Die in Naruto – What Really Happened?

Danzo

Danzō Shimura was one of the elders of Konohagakure, and the founder and leader of Root (a secret Anbu training subdivision).
In episode 211 of the ‘Naruto: Shippūden’ anime (“Danzō Shimura”) and Chapter #481 of the manga (“Danzō Dies!”), Danzō dies by his own hand while trying to take Sasuke Uchiha and Obito/Tobi Uchiha with him.

How Did Danzō Die?

Danzō died by his own hand, and tried to also kill Sasuki and Tobi – again, to protect Konohagakure in his eyes.

Embroiled and losing in a battle with Sasuke Uchiha (who was seeking revenge for his brother’s sufferings, of which Danzō helped cause), the newly-appointed-Hokage Danzō expends the last of his life-force in an attempt to kill Sasuke, Tobi and himself.

He used Reverse Tetragram Sealing Jutsu, and died after – he was unsuccessful in killing Sasuke and Tobi.

Who Was Danzō?

Born on January 6 to a shinobi father, Danzō joined the Academy and successfully graduated amongst the first few hundred students to ever graduate from the school. Throughout his childhood, he had a friendly rivalry with Hiruzen Sarutobi, who would grow to be the Third Hokage.

Danzō Shimura was an elder of Konohagakure, and the founder/leader of Root. 

Danzō was notorious for frequently performing unsanctioned actions and undermining other Konohagakure figures. His reasoning for this was to protect Konohagakure, as he believed fiercely in protecting the village’s best interests.

Danzō desperately wanted to be Hokage, and eventually was appointed the Sixth Hokage Candidate after Pain, a main antagonist of the show, attacked the village.

Danzō manipulated Itachi Uchiha to spy on his own Uchiha clan, having suspicions that they would attempt to overthrow Konohagakure. Hiruzen, as Hokage, diplomatically resolved the situation, but Danzō secretly convinced Itachi to slaughter the Uchiha clan.

When he had done this, Danzō told everyone it was Itachi’s own idea, and the village believed him. Hiruzen, however, did not, and he disbanded Danzō’s Root division as a result.

Why Did Danzō Want The Uchiha Clan Killed?

Danzō believed that Konohagakure was strongest when united against a common enemy, and following this ideal, he set about stigmatizing the village against the Uchiha clan. 

In the anime, during the Nine-Tails Attack on Konohagakure, Danzō refused to let the Uchiha clan join in the defending of the village, hypothesising that they would take advantage of the situation and use the Nine-Tails against the village.

After the attack, Danzō posited that the Uchiha clan were in fact behind the attack, and began a spying operation on them, relocating them to the outskirts of Konohagakure.

Two years after this, upon hearing of a possible plan to overthrow the village by the Uchiha clan, Danzō convinced Itachi Uchahi, a member of the clan, to spy on them and report information back to him.

Though Hiruzen ended the cup diplomatically, Danzō felt this wasn’t enough and manipulated Itachi into slaughtering the Uchiha clan (apart from his own brother, Sasuke Uchiha). 

Hiruzen was appalled at Danzō’s actions, and disbanded his Root unit by way of punishment – Danzō however kept the unit secretly active.

What Was Danzō Like?

When younger, Danzō was hot-headed and eager, keen to prove himself as a ninja. He was jealous of Hiruzen, and felt inferior to him – a trait that would follow him into adulthood. 

In adulthood, Danzō was calm, collected and cold, with his emotions far beneath the surface. He had strict beliefs about prioritizing Konohagakure above all else, possibly due to being raised in a time of war.

This lent credence to Danzō engaging in underhanded, sly and even immoral acts, as in his eyes they were all for the good of the village.

Danzō wanted to strengthen Konohagakure, and did so (in his eyes) by uniting them in a common hatred towards the Uchiha clan, eventually even manipulating Itachi into murdering the clan.

Danzō died in episode 211 of the ‘Naruto: Shippūden’ anime, and Chapter #481 of the manga.

Danzō also told the other villagers that Naruto Uzumaki was the container of the Nine-Tailed Fox, thus subjecting Naruto to the villagers’ fury.

Danzō was desperate to become Hokage, and waited decades for the opportunity, however he died before fully assuming the position. He wanted peace for the ninja world, and saw this as possible with all shinobi forces under his control.

What Did Danzō Look Like?

As a child, Danzō wore a dark-green kimono tied with a sash.

In his youth, he was quite handsome, with long black shaggy hair, brown eyes, a standard armor outfit with black wrist guards, a shuriken holster, a pouch at his waist and a forehead protector.

Danzō mostly appeared as a frail old man, walking with a cane. He still had his black shaggy hair, though it was shorter now, and he had lost one of his eyes. He obtained an x-shaped scar on his chin, and most commonly wore a white shirt with a dark grey or black robe over it.

His right arm was bandaged and covered with three gold braces, and an image of Hashirama Senju’s face protruded from his right shoulder, where the First Hokage’s cells had been injected into his body.

What Is Danzō’s Legacy?

Though Danzō committed many nefarious deeds in the name of protecting Konohagakure, he was a key figure in the village’s expansion after the Second Hokage died. Even in his final dying moment, he was trying to protect the village by attempting to eliminate Sasuke and Tobi – though in this he was unsuccessful. 

After Danzō’s death, Kakashi Hatake and Tsunade discover the true extent of his actions, but choose to not publicize their findings. Root continues to be officially disbanded, and one of Danzō’s most loyal followers, Tanuki Shigaraki, is enraged at the fact.