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DAISUKE SASAKI

Real Name: Daisuke Sasaki

Identity/Class: Normal human (late 16th Century) (citizen of Japan)

Occupation: Sect leader of the Hand, teacher;
   formerly student at Ishiyama Sword School

Group Membership: The Hand;
   formerly Ishiyama Sword School

Affiliations: The Hand, Saburo Ishiyama, Eliza Martinez (loose), Kagenobu Yoshioka

Enemies: All foreigners to Japan

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Kyushu, Japan

First Appearance: Elektra: The Hand#1 (November, 2004)

Powers/Abilities: Trained since a youth in the samurai code of Bushido, Daisuke Sasaki is exceptionally skilled in martial arts and the use of katana swords. He values honor and Japanese tradition, but despises foreign influence and foreigners in Japan. He has athlete level fitness and endurance, and has ninja-level stealth. Sasaki is devoted to the early racially purist principles of the clandestine Hand organization to reclaim Japan exclusively for the Japanese people. Of note is that he has always presented himself with a shaved head (or is permanently bald).

Height: 5'9" (by approximation)
Weight: 165 lbs. (by approximation)
Eyes: Brown
Hair: Bald (with black eyebrows)

History:

(Elektra: The Hand#1 (fb) - BTS) - Around 1580, in Kyushu, Japan, Daisuke Sasaki was enrolled in a school where Saburo Ishiyama was the sensei, teaching the Bushido way of chivalry, martial arts, self-discipline and honor. He eventually became top student alongside the orphan Kagenobu Yoshioka.

(Elektra: The Hand#1 (fb)) - In 1585, Ishiyama presided over a traditional test to decide which of the top two students would make it to samurai standing. The duel ended when Yoshioka drew first blood from Sasaki using a sai, permanently scarring Sasaki across his left cheek.

(Elektra: The Hand#2 (fb) - BTS) - In 1588, Ishiyama died but had instructed that Yoshioka take over leadership of the school. Until the ronin Yoshioka could be found, Sasaki, now a samurai in his own right, was temporarily put in charge.

(Elektra: The Hand#2 (fb)) - Sasaki was formal in meeting Yoshioka, but over a tea ceremony, Yoshioka offered Sasaki joint leadership and training in what he had learnt in his wanderings. But Sasaki warned of corrupt daimyos (feudal lords) restricting the size of such martial arts schools. Yoshioka used the symbol of his hand as a fist that would strike against the government and reclaim Japan away from foreign influence. Three months later, Sasaki joined Yoshioka in gathering the students and led a stealthy mission against a village where they killed all foreigners from a galleon, before leaving it to drift from port. After the raid, Yoshioka declared the Hand had been unleashed on the world.

(Elektra: The Hand#3 (fb)) - In 1590, Yoshioka assembled four other like-minded clan members alongside Sasaki to represent the fingers of a hand and the five Japanese islands, but Sasaki was troubled by the heretical and colorful nature of the rebel allies and left early. He later apologized privately to Yoshioka and acknowledged the importance of shared ideology. They soon met the half -Japanese girl Eliza Martinez and her father. Hearing her tragic story mirrored his own, Yoshioka allowed her entry to the school, despite Sasaki's racist protestations. Eliza's training began and two years later, an apparently compliant Sasaki insisted that she be tested in her ninja skills.

(Elektra: The Hand#4 (fb)) - Sasaki secretly watched as Eliza embraced Yoshioka after her successful test.

(Elektra: The Hand#4 (fb) - BTS) - Disappointed that Yoshioka would sleep with someone racially impure, Sasaki let rumors spread of Eliza's mixed heritage, leading to division among the Hand's clans. By 1594, there had been attempted assassinations on Eliza. Sasaki organized a secret meeting of clan leaders to wrest control from Yoshioka and sent the students away from the school so that he could meet Yoshioka in a final confrontation.

(Elektra: The Hand#4 (fb)) - In the empty schoolgrounds, with his katana drawn, Sasaki confronted Yoshioka, whom he thought had betrayed the racially purist principles of the Hand. A fierce fight ensued, but Sasaki was ultimately killed. Later, a tattooed sorcerous senior member of the Hand commanded that Sasaki's body be made ready for resurrection so that he could fight further for the Hand.

Comments: Created by C.B. Cebulski [as Akira Yoshida] (writer), Christian Gossett (pencils), Jonathan Glapion (inks).

The entire story is taught as a history lesson of the Hand by a Hand member to Elektra.

Bushido is the ancient code of the samurai warrior that may have origins from the 8th Century and flourished in the 17th Century.

Thanks to comics.org for identifying that the credited author Akira Yoshida was actually C.B. Cebulski.

Apparently Cebulski initially intended Elektra: The Hand to a trilogy of stories, but low sales confined it to only the first arc, so who knows the future of the resurrected Sasaki? It would make a good short tale in a rebooted Marvel Comics Presents, Holiday Special or Fanfare, or a back-up story somewhere.

Profile by Grendel Prime.

CLARIFICATIONS :
Daisuke Sasaki has no known connections to:


images: (without ads)
Elektra: The Hand#4, cover (main image)
Elektra: The Hand#3, p7, pan5 (headshot)
Elektra: The Hand#4, p17, pan2 (long katana)


Appearances:
Elektra: The Hand#1 (November, 2004) - C.B. Cebulski [as Akira Yoshida] (writer), Christian Gossett (pencils), Jonathan Glapion (inks), Mackenzie Cadenhead (editor)
Elektra: The Hand#2 (November, 2004) - C.B. Cebulski [as Akira Yoshida] (writer), Christian Gossett (pencils), Jonathan Glapion (inks), Mackenzie Cadenhead (editor)
Elektra: The Hand#3 (December, 2004) - C.B. Cebulski [as Akira Yoshida] (writer), Christian Gossett (pencils), Jonathan Glapion (inks), Mackenzie Cadenhead (editor)
Elektra: The Hand#4 (January, 2005) - C.B. Cebulski [as Akira Yoshida] (writer), Christian Gossett (pencils), Jonathan Glapion (inks), Mackenzie Cadenhead (editor)


First posted: 09/28/2019
Last updated: 09/28/2019

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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