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The 11 Strongest Akatsuki Members in ‘Naruto,’ Ranked

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The Akatsuki are not dudes you want to meet in a dark alley, unless you’ve got some dope kekki genkai up your sleeve or happen to be the greatest hokage. These guys are tough. The toughest around. They eat nails for breakfast without any milk. They are also, arguably, the most stylish and fashion-conscious members of the Naruto universe. Those black cloaks with red clouds are downright iconic. Honestly, they kind of look like a murderous boy band. Or like they’re about to bust out into a dance routine, but instead of glitter they’re throwing a hail of kunai knives. I’m into it.

But whatever their actual goals are (top the pop charts, idk?) they’ve recruited some pretty badass people to achieve them. They seek out only the best of the best: S-rank ninjas who are unaffiliated with any village or nation. But even among the best, the cream still rises to the top. These ninjas are the creme de la creme de la creme. The most elite of the most elite. The top 11 most powerful Akatsuki.

11. Hidan

(image credit: Pierrot)

The weakest ninja on this list also happens to be immortal, so I hope that puts the Akatsuki’s power levels into perspective. Due to his extensive experimentation with advanced techniques, Hidan is unable to die from virtually all causes except malnutrition. You can stab him in the heart, cut off his head, or blow his body apart with explosives and he just won’t die. But don’t take it from me, take it from the ninja who actually tried each of the above methods to no effect. The worst part? Hidan is still able to experience pain, but the little masochist actually likes it. Now, let’s talk about weapons. He uses the scythe as a short-range and long-range weapon, and is able to whip it across the battlefield at blinding speed and pull it back to him using a chain. He’s kind of like a star quarterback, except instead of throwing touchdown passes, he throws a really pointy man-sized stick that is hungry for blood. And what does he do with the blood that his scythe collects? Oh nothing, he just draws a sigil on the ground with it that allows him to link his body with his opponent’s. He can then control his opponent’s body remotely. Then what does he do? What he does best: masochism. He inflicts non-fatal injuries on himself (and therefore his opponent as well) and takes pleasure in the pain. Then he stabs himself in the heart and watches the life leave the eyes of whatever poor sap thought it would be a good idea to challenge him. And may I reiterate, this guy is the weakest dude on this list.

10. Sasori

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The creepy bastard is a master of the uncanny valley-est of ninja tools: puppets. And he can summon hundreds of them. Each one of his puppets has a really cute little attribute like being made of knives or exploding or some other horrible thing. And the worst part about this guy? He’s a puppet too. Yes, you read that correctly, Sasori transformed his own body into a puppet body and is completely immune to all attacks except those that strike his “flesh core.” Gross. He gets significantly less tough once you know this secret about him, but like any good ninja, he’s really good at keeping secrets. Imagine, you just barely survived your fight with Hidan, and you throw a kunai in this guy’s face and he just shrugs it off. Ew. Then he throws half a million puppets made of knives at you. No thanks. I quit.

9. Deidara

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Funny how the first three letters of Deidara’s name are also the three letters used to spell “die.” Coincidence? I think not. This guy is the Akatsuki’s resident explosives expert. By combining the elements of lightning and earth, he is able to turn any regular-ass lump of clay into the ninja equivalent of C4. And in case you’re wondering how he makes these explosives, he uses the mouths on his hands to infuse clay with his chakra and make it go boom. He also has a weird little mouth on his chest as well. Kinky. The worst part about Deidara, however, is not his weird little mouth hands or his explosive powers, but his intelligence. He is a master at using subterfuge and manipulation to make things explode when and where you least expect it. Knock knock. Who’s there? Interrupting explosion. Interupting expl- hey wait a minute I know thi-BOOM. No fun.

8. Kisame

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Kisame has the unique ability to make it Shark Week all 52 weeks of the year. I mean look at him, he’s Jaws in semi-human form. Kisame is a real slippery bastard because of his million and one water-based techniques. But that’s not the worst part of him. The WORST part about this guy is that he has a LIVING SWORD with a NAME (Samehada) that he uses in battle. What does his sword do? Not much, just EATS CHAKRA. Yes, you read that correctly. Throw a chakra-based attack (which is pretty much any attack except a slap in the face) and he will feed it to his sword. And then he can fuse with his sword for a complete shark makeover that allows him to heal from basically any injury. What’s up with all of these nigh-immortal dudes? It’s really making things difficult here.

7. Kakuzu

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Great. ANOTHER fucking immortal ninja. Kakuzu has the lovely little ability to shoot horrifying threads out of any part of his body. He can use these threads to control anything that he sticks them in. Including people. So, just stab him in the heart when he does it, right? Since that worked so well on the other Akatsuki members. Well here’s the thing, if you stab Kakuzu in the heart when he’s got a tendril in you, he can just replace his heart with your heart instead. To kill this guy you basically have to destroy his entire body all at once. Easy, right? Well, it would be, except he has basically mastered every single chakra element so he can shoot earth, wind, water, lightning, and fire at you simultaneously. Boo. We don’t like it.

6. Konan

(image credit: Pierrot)

The only woman in the Akatsuki’s second generation, and the personal advisor to Akatsuki badass Pain (we’ll get to him), Konan is someone who is not to be fucked with. She was taught by the legendary ninja Jiraiya, and was one of his most powerful students. So what’s her power? Paper. Lots of paper. Regular paper? No, paper that explodes. So what does she do with it? Throws a lot of it at people, naturally. And if that doesn’t sound scary enough, her paper can also take the form of any object. She once made an entire “lake” made of paper that looked like a regular lake except it was filled with 600 billion explosive tags. Oh, she also uses it to make a pair of badass wings for herself that she can use to fly. They call her “Angel” for this very reason. I think they forgot the “of Death” at the end, but Konan’s the perfect person to remind them.

5. Black Zetsu

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Okay, so spoiler alert, Black Zetsu is a physical manifestation of the will of the most powerful being of Kaguya Otsutsuki, the most powerful being in the Naruto universe. So, like many of the other Akatsuki, Black Zetsu is basically immortal (shocker). It can live for thousands of years without aging, and can also survive devastating injuries like being literally bisected. It can also attach its weird body to people and mind control them into doing whatever it wants. Yikes. Black Zetsu is basically an absolute master of manipulation and able to shapeshift its body and take the possession of other bodies to achieve its own ends. It is also able to use rare and badass nature transformations (like the Wood Release), and was even able to use advanced techniques, like the Sharingan and Rinnegan, after possessing a ninja with those abilities.

4. Orochimaru

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A member of the Akatsuki only when it benefits his own interests, Orochimaru is one of the strongest characters in Naruto history. He can summon sky-scraper-sized snakes for one thing. And nearly singlehandedly destroyed the Hidden Lead Village in an attack. He is also able to use all five of the Nature Transformations and is said to know more ninjustu than any other ninja in history. And guess what, he’s basically immortal too. He can turn himself into a giant snake, swallow somebody, and implant his soul into their body. This ability allows him to inherit all of his victim’s abilities, as well as extend his own life span. It’s seriously fucked up.

3. Itachi Uchiha

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Itachi Uchiha was a child prodigy, and arguably the greatest ninja of his generation. He possesses the rare and powerful Mangekyo Sharigan in both of his eyes, which allows him to use a series of god-level techniques. Like what? Well he can send you to an illusionary hell dimension inside your own mind just by looking at you. He can also set things on fire with his eyes. One wink from this guy and you’ll be barbecue. He can also summon a massive warrior avatar made out of his own chakra called “Susanoo” that he can use to murder people as he pleases. But perhaps the most incredible ability of Sasuke is his Serverus Snape-levels of deception that allowed him to work as a double agent against the Akatsuki from the inside. Well played, Itachi. Well, played.

2. Pain

(image credit: Pierrot)

One of the most powerful ninjas in the history of Naruto, Pain is blessed with the god-like powers of the Rinnegan. He uses this devastating eye power to control six corpses that each have an equally devastating ability. Like what you ask? Well, power over life and death is one of them. The man is a master of each of the elemental transformations in the series, and is able to singlehandedly level cities, in an instant, using his awesome reserves of power. He could also use his corpse’s powers to summon giant animals, manipulate gravity, and even revive the dead. The worst part about him is that he could fight with all his corpses simultaneously, and control each one over vast distances. He was basically a one-man army. He was so tough that the other Akatsuki members picked him to be their leader. That’s saying something.

1. Obito Uchiha

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The strongest of them all is: Obito Uchiha himself. Obito Uchiha was in a completely different league from the other ninjas on this list because he possessed the Rinnegan, the Sharigan, and the powers of the ultimate demon Ten-Tails. He could do anything Pain could do but better. Like what you ask? Well by using a space-time manipulation technique, he could make his body turn completely intangible and therefore invincible. He is also able to use the devastating Truth Seeking Balls technique to obliterate anything in his path. Remember when I said that Pain was a one-man army? Well, Obito actually put the one-man army theory to the test. He could only be defeated by the entire Allied Shinobi Forces, a military force over a thousand ninja strong. His downfall was also orchestrated by one of the most powerful ninja in the series: Madara Uchiha. That guy actually managed to defeat an entire army of ninja by dropping a meteor on them. Even the best of the nigh-immortal Akatsuki can be defeated, and that might be the scariest thing of all.

Featured image credit: Pierrot

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Jack Doyle (they/them) is actually nine choirs of biblically accurate angels in crammed into one pair of $10 overalls. They have been writing articles for nerds on the internet for less than a year now. They really like anime. Like... REALLY like it. Like you know those annoying little kids that will only eat hotdogs and chicken fingers? They're like that... but with anime. It's starting to get sad.