Tsunade is one of the more interesting characters from the Naruto franchise by Masashi Kishimoto. Although a secondary character by all means, Tsunade actually became one of the more intriguing characters to appear in the whole franchise, being interesting both in- and out-of-universe. She is one of the most powerful shinobi in the whole series and a character that had a large impact on the plot, especially during her brief term as the Fifth Hokage. In this article, we are going to reveal to you why Tsunade stopped being Hokage.
The exact reason why Tsunade gave up the position of Hokage was never revealed, although it can be deduced from what we know from the manga. Tsunade never actually wanted to become Hokage in the first place but reluctantly accepted the position in the wake of a new threat, while another suitable candidate was not available at the time. So, as soon as the threat was over and a suitable candidate was found, she gave up the position she reluctantly took in the first place.
The rest of this article is going to focus on the story of Tsunade becoming and ceasing to be Hokage. You’re going to find out the circumstances that led to her becoming the Fifth Hokage, as well as everything we know (and we don’t know much) surrounding the circumstances of her giving up the title after the Fourth Shinobi World War.
Why did Tsunade stop being Hokage?
In order to explain the circumstances that led to Tsunade giving up the title of the Fifth Hokage, we first have to explain her stance towards the position and how she even became Hokage in the first place. She is committed to watching over her fellow citizens and fulfilled her role of Hokage with dedication, not hesitating to put her life on the line to protect that of the inhabitants of the village.
She showed it, in particular, during the attack of Pain, where she gave all her chakra to heal and protect each ninja and villager. Yet she had initially categorically refused the post of Hokage announcing with cynicism and bitterness that only fools wanted to become Hokage. Indeed her little brother and her boyfriend who coveted this position died before being able to realize their dream, and moreover Tsunade saw all the previous Hokage ie, including the very young Fourth Hokage.
When initially asked by Jiraiya to become Hokage, Tsunade refused, citing her contempt for the uselessness of the position. But, later, she stated that Naruto would not die before becoming Hokage, and then agreed to become the Fifth Hokage, overcoming her phobia of blood and pushing Orochimaru away. She then joined forces with Jiraiya, still drugged, to start a battle bringing together the 3 Ninjas of the Legend and their summons.
Tsunade landed the final blow against Orochimaru, causing him to flee after declaring his intention to do away with Konoha once he was recovered. Once Naruto was healed, the group returned to Konoha. Tsunade, ready to take on the role Dan and Nawaki had always wanted, secretly expressed a wish that Naruto would one day become Hokage.
As stated, Tsunade was a great Hokage. She deeply cared for her villagers and she would readily put her life on the line to save them. This is what ultimately made her one of the best Hokage in history, and she had a really tough competition. But, despite accepting the position, Tsunade never really wanted it and she accepted it out of necessity – her village was in trouble and there was no other suitable candidate for the position.
But, as the Fourth Shinobi World War showed, Tsunade had a worthy successor in Kakashi Hatake. Kakashi was even more reluctant than her (but due to different reasons) to accept the position, but she ultimately persuaded him to do so after the Fourth Shinobi World War. She looked for a way to get out of it, and once the danger had passed and a suitable successor had been found, she was ready to give up her position, which she ultimately did.
The sections that follow are going to chronicle the events of Tsunade giving up her position, telling you what happened to her in the future of the story.
In what episode does Tsunade give up being Hokage?
The Naruto anime wasn’t always clear with its episode order and even if we do know when something happened in the manga (exactly which chapter), we don’t necessarily have to know what episode it happened in. This is why people often wonder in what episode something happened.
Luckily for you, the team here Fiction Horizon has done its research and can, thus, tell you that Tsunade stopped being Hokage in episode 479 of Naruto: Shippuden, which was titled “Naruto Uzumaki!!”; it is also the same episode in which Kakashi Hatake becomes the sixth Hokage. Here is a good video detailing these events:
What happened to Tsunade after Kakashi became Hokage?
Kakashi was appointed Sixth Hokage at the end of the Fourth Great Shinobi War. Yet, a year after the end of the war, he still did not officially accept the duties of his office. Tsunade continued to shoulder all the responsibilities until he was ready, but also pressured his successor to make a decision. Kakashi instructed her to wait until he completed his mission to guard the Tobishachimaru on his top-secret maiden voyage.
The Tobishachimaru ended up being hijacked by the Ryûha Arming Alliance during its journey and the pirates threatened to kill the passengers if Konoha did not release their leader, Garyô, from the Hôzukijô in Kusa, they also stipulated that Naruto should not be involved. After being informed that Kakashi was aboard the Tobishachimaru, Tsunade summoned Konoha’s available personnel except Naruto.
After the war, Tsunade studied the material that White Zetsu were made of and, from his research, was able to create prosthetic arms for Naruto and Sasuke, although Sasuke refused his own. Most of her free time, though, was spent enjoying alcohol and gambling, which is the Tsunade thing to do.