In Naruto: Is Itachi genuinely concerned for Sasuke? Does he love him?

One of the best things about Naruto is the tension and complexity of the relationship between Itachi and Sasuke Uchiha.

Sasuke became the broken, vengeful man he was because of what Itachi did, turning him into the darkness that ultimately consumed him.

There is a lot of animosity, anger, betrayal, sadness, and pain in the relationship between Itachi and Sasuke. What about love, though? Has Itachi any feelings for Sasuke at all? Had he ever loved him?

Itachi’s feelings for Sasuke, his younger sibling, have never wavered. He would have murdered Sasuke along with the rest of the Uchiha family if he didn’t care about Sasuke. Itachi had everything planned out right up until he died, allowing Sasuke to come out on top. Sasuke could only obtain the Mangekyo Sharingan and the Ametorasu after Itachi’s death.

1. Konoha or Sasuke, who did Itachi love more?

Itachi poking Sasuke’s forehead as kids – his gesture of love
Itachi poking Sasuke’s forehead as kids – his gesture of love

No one or thing could ever compare to Sasuke in Itachi’s eyes. Even though he was willing to kill his entire extended family for the sake of Konoha, protecting his brother had always been his number one priority.

Beginning his training at the Academy at the tender age of six, Itachi advanced quickly through the ranks to Chunin by the time he was ten. As a result of his unwavering dedication to Danzo Shimura and the Konoha, he was promoted to the rank of Anbu Captain under Danzo’s command.

Itachi killed everyone in the Uchiha family after receiving word from Danzo that he believed the clan had to be exterminated because of an impending revolt. Many readers may draw the incorrect conclusion that Itachi has never loved anyone other than Danzo and Konoha because of this.

Itachi only agreed to murder the Uchiha family to save Sasuke from certain death. Sasuke and the rest of the Uchiha clan would be killed in the conflict between the Uchiha and the rest of the village.

Itachi could either side with Uchiha and fight against Danzo and the Third Hokage, or he could side with Konoha and kill his people in order to save his brother.

Even though doing so would turn him into a mass murderer and earn him the enmity of the brother he loved most, Itachi still opted to side with Sasuke. However, he did threaten Danzo, saying that he would reveal Konoha’s secrets if Sasuke were ever in danger.

To save his younger brother’s life, he was prepared to risk everything he had worked for.

Itachi’s unconventional display of affection consisted of destroying his brother’s mind and body and robbing him of the things he treasured most in the world. He planned to use Kotoamatsukami to brainwash Sasuke into protecting Konoha. However, Kotoamatsukami was meant to be a last resort in case Sasuke betrayed Konoha.

But his love for him was so great that he turned villainous, risking his brother’s hatred in the process, to save him.

Itachi’s unwavering dedication to Sasuke’s safety was proof of his unwavering devotion to him, and it was the highest form of love in Naruto.

Itachi poking Sasuke’s forehead before he died + locking in Amaterasu
Itachi poking Sasuke’s forehead before he died + locking in Amaterasu

2. Why did Itachi care so much about Sasuke? Why did Itachi let Sasuke get away?

Itachi spares Sasuke
Itachi spares Sasuke

Sasuke was Itachi’s greatest love, so he was the only member of the Uchiha clan to survive the massacre. Itachi saw Sasuke as more than just a younger sibling; he was also a son, a companion, and a best friend.

Itachi acted more like a father figure to Sasuke throughout his life, showing him compassion their real father never did and encouraging him to better himself.

Itachi was a genius in his own right; he had special abilities from birth. He was a strange and complicated loner who had few friends besides Shisui and Sasuke. He was the recipient of much admiration and attention due to his achievements, but only Sasuke truly grasped who he was.

Sasuke, in turn, looked up to his older sibling and aspired to emulate his greatness and power. They went to the gym together and got even thicker.

Although Itachi spared Sasuke’s life physically, he did not spare him emotionally when he was forced to kill his family. He did it because Sasuke was the only one who could properly punish Itachi for his actions.

Sasuke’s path of vengeance and hatred was encouraged because Itachi portrayed himself as the antagonist. He broke his arm and caused him pain on purpose to make Sasuke wish for his death and feel psychological pain.

3. Did Itachi care more about Sasuke than Sasuke cared about Itachi?

Itachi x Sasuke
Itachi x Sasuke

Both Itachi and Sasuke ended up loving the other just as much. Itachi gave up his entire family, his reputation, and his life to protect Sasuke. When asked how much Itachi’s life was worth, Sasuke replied, “More than the village,” demonstrating that their toxic but profound sibling love was reciprocal.

Sasuke, who hates killing, is willing to wipe out the entire Konoha population if it means pleasing Itachi. Itachi wiped out his family to protect Sasuke.

Sasuke and Itachi’s love for one another transcended their loyalty to their families, communities, and even to themselves.

After learning Itachi’s truth, Sasuke was unable to move on with his life. Instead of focusing on the here and now, he was fixated on getting revenge for his brother.

To Itachi, Sasuke was the driving force behind everything he did and the focal point of his existence.

4. Do you think Sasuke had any regrets about killing Itachi?

When Sasuke learns that his brother pretended to be the bad guy and killed the entire Uchiha clan to protect him, he immediately begins to regret killing Itachi. His suffering has reawakened his Mangekyo Sharingan.

To the point of madness, he plots to wipe out every last resident of Konoha as punishment for the death of his brother. In his ensuing rage, he nearly murders Naruto, Sakura, and Karin.

Unhinged Sasuke
Unhinged Sasuke

As a result of his encounter with Itachi from the Impure World Reincarnation, Sasuke’s entire worldview is transformed.

As he shifts his focus from pure hatred and destruction to focusing it on himself, his ideology becomes a hybrid of the Curse of Hatred and the Will of Fire.

5. Because of Itachi, did Sasuke get stronger?

If not for Itachi, Sasuke would not be as strong as he is now.

Sasuke’s Complete Body Susanoo
Sasuke’s Complete Body Susanoo

Itachi’s whole motivation for Sasuke’s training and subsequent shadow protection was to help him reach his full potential as a ninja. Because he knew he wouldn’t always be there to save him, Itachi turned into a criminal and pushed Sasuke to the edge of his abilities.

During their final battle, Itachi made sure to teach Sasuke a variety of fighting styles to ensure that Sasuke would be able to defend himself in the future. In this time, Sasuke learned about two of Naruto’s most formidable attacks: Sasanoo and Amaterasu.

Sasuke’s Cursed Mark was removed, Orochimaru was sealed away, and Amaterasu was planted in his eye by Itachi just before he died. All of Itachi’s provocation of Sasuke was for the purpose of making him stronger.

Sasuke has the Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan after having Itachi’s eyes transplanted into his own after he uses the Mangekyo Sharingan, which awoke after Itachi’s death due to his excessive use of it. Sasuke would never be able to use Susanoo or Amaterasu without Itachi’s help.

Sasuke’s growth as a warrior was entirely due to Itachi’s influence, from the trials he put him through to the unending devotion he showed him in the end.

6. Naruto

Masashi Kishimoto wrote and drew the Naruto manga series, which is a Japanese comic book. It first came out in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump on September 21, 1999, and stayed there until November 10, 2014. There are 72 tankbon collections of the manga.

Naruto Shippuden is the second part of the anime series. It shows an older Naruto trying to save his friend Sasuke while also dealing with the threat of the criminal group Akatsuki, which is after him as part of a bigger plan.