Gaara of the Desert Funko POP
From Naruto Shippuden, Gaara of the Desert, as a stylized POP vinyl from Funko! Gaara (Gaara of the Desert) is a shinobi of Sunagakure. He was made the Jinchuriki of the One-Tailed Shukaku before he was born, causing the villagers of Suna to fear him as a monster. With nobody to connect to, Gaara grew up hating the world and looking out only for himself, giving his life meaning by killing anyone he came across. After being defeated by Naruto Uzumaki, a Jinchuriki like himself who found strength in his friendships, Gaara starts emulating him. He becomes Suna‘s Fifth Kazekage (Godaime Kazekage, literally meaning: Fifth Wind Shadow) so that he can protect the village and all those who live there, dispelling the fears he cast on the villagers. Originally debuting as an antagonist, Gaara is a shinobi affiliated with Sunagakure and is the son of Sunagakure’s leader, the Fourth Kazekage. He was born as a demon’s host as part of his father’s intention to have a weapon to restore their village.
However, a combination of being ostracized by the Sunagakure villagers, his early inability to control the Tailed Beast, and the notion that his deceased mother called him her curse on the village caused Gaara to become a ruthless killer who believes his own purpose is to kill his enemies. Only after meeting Naruto Uzumaki does Gaara earn a change of perspective, as he eventually becomes Sunagakure’s Fifth Kazekage and gains acceptance by his people. As Shukaku’s Jinchuriki, Gaara is able to manipulate sand. He carries a supply of sand wherever he goes in a gourd, which itself is made from sand. This personal sand is infused with his own chakra, allowing him to deploy it faster and manipulate it more precisely. If he needs more sand, he can either use sand from the surroundings or, if there isn’t any, use his personal sand to break down minerals in the ground to create some, these secondary sand supplies require more chakra to control. Gaara’s ability to manipulate sand remains even after Shukaku is removed from his body. Indeed, upon seeing how much sand Gaara can control at once, the Fourth Kazekage wrongly assumes it is Shukaku itself doing so.
Gifted with powerful defensive ninjutsu, Gaara’s usual tactic is to remain stationary in battle, using his sand to attack opponents from afar. The attacks typically follow the same formula: capture and immobilise the target, such as with the Sand Binding Coffin, and then crush all parts of their body, such as with the Sand Waterfall Funeral. If opponents are able to get close enough to attack him, Gaara’s Shield of Sand automatically protects him from all threats, even those he is not aware of, the Shield of Sand is commonly thought to be Shukaku’s doing, an act of self-preservation, but it is actually Gaara’s mother, Karura, whose love protects Gaara even after her death. If the Shield of Sand is penetrated, either through speed or brute-force, Gaara also has access to a secondary Armour of Sand covering his body, however, it requires an impractical amount of chakra to maintain for long periods of time and weighs him down. Nevertheless, Gaara’s sand is extremely effective at keeping him safe, earning fame as an “absolute defence” and allowing him to go years without experiencing a single injury. By adulthood, Gaara’s Shield of Sand’s defence increased tremendously, able to shrug off attacks that Sasuke Uchiha‘s Majestic Attire Susanoo could not.
Gaara’s sand is highly malleable and can be used for any number of purposes. Often this is to protect others, such as with a wall for one person or, in his capacity as Kazekage, a shield as large as Suna. Offensively, he can shape Sand Shuriken or Sand Swords. Gaara also has a variety of supplementary uses for his sand, a form of flight for himself and others, a method of sensing concealed targets, a Sand Clone to reinforce himself or allies, a Third Eye for reconnaissance. During the Fourth Shinobi World War, he uses the Desert Layered Imperial Funeral Seal to serve the same functional purpose as the Cloth Binding Technique, giving him a way of stopping reincarnated opponents. Numerous anime and manga publications have commented on Gaara’s character. Multiple series called Naruto’s fight against Gaara the high point of the entire series due to their similarities and Gaara’s role in the aftermath as he attempts to redeem himself. Among the Naruto reader base, Gaara has been popular, placing high in several popularity polls and always making it to the top 10 characters.
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