is a fictional character in the Naruto manga and anime series created by Masashi Kishimoto. Kishimoto originally planned to introduce Kakashi in the manga to the series' titular character, Naruto Uzumaki, early on, but pushed back this meeting so that Naruto's teammates could be better developed.
In the story, Kakashi is the leader and teacher of Team 7, consisting of the series' primary characters, Sasuke Uchiha, Sakura Haruno, and Naruto Uzumaki. He is initially portrayed as a detached and apathetic figure, but as the series progresses, his loyalty to his friends and students becomes increasingly apparent. Kakashi's past has been extensively explored in the series, resulting in a gaiden being devoted to his past experiences. Kakashi has appeared in several pieces of Naruto media, including three of the four featured films in the series, all of the original video animations, and several video games.
Numerous anime and manga publications have praised and criticized Kakashi's character. Although he has been noted to be an echo of similar detached shōnen manga characters, the duality of Kakashi's apathetic and serious sides have been praised. Kakashi's popularity has been noted by reviewers; T.H.E.M. Anime Reviews commented that the series could simply be renamed "Kakashi." Merchandise based on Kakashi has also been released, including key chain and plush doll.
Masashi Kishimoto originally intended for Kakashi to debut in the second chapter of the Naruto manga, appearing prior to the other members of Team 7. This Kakashi was designed as a laid back, affected, skilled ninja that ended his sentences with the polite "de gozaru" in the Japanese versions of the series. After speaking with his editor, Kishimoto pushed this debut back, allowing him to better develop Kakashi and the rest of Team 7. Because he acts as a link between the other main characters of the series, Kakashi is rarely featured prominently in promotional artwork, instead appearing in the background while his students are the focus of the scene. In an interview in Shōnen Jump's, Kishimoto said that if he were to make an extra story from the manga with a different character, such character would be Kakashi.
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Official Site: Shonen Jump
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