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As we know, there are only two who have achieved the Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan. Madara and Sasuke.

Madara

Madara and his brother both gained their MS from killing those closest to them. Madara then gained the EMS when he took Izuna's (his brother's) eyes, who had the MS.

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Sasuke

Itachi gained his MS when he witnessed Shisui die. Sasuke gained his MS when he learned the truth about Itachi from Tobi. Sasuke then gained the EMS when he took Itachi's eyes.

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Question

When Itachi was fighting Sasuke, he was saying how he wanted to take Sasuke's eyes so he could obtain the EMS. Sasuke did not have the MS at the time, so was Itachi lying, or are just "blood tie" Sharingan needed for the EMS? *Sidenote I personally don't believe Itachi would lie about this, because if he did and Sasuke found out, Sasuke would then be questioning Itachi's true motives.

Does anybody have any proof that you have to have the MS in order to awaken the EMS?

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  • Itachi didn't transfer his MS into Sasuke. He just put a defensive jutsu that will activate Amaterasu the moment Sasuke saw Tobi's eye. Oct 21, 2016 at 15:13
  • Is that what happened? So you're saying Sasuke activated the MS because his brother died in front of him? At the time, Sasuke did not see Itachi as a friend, but as an enemy. So why would that activate the MS in Sasuke? Oct 21, 2016 at 15:15
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    Yes on both questions. Love and hate are separated only by a thin line. dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1081242/… Oct 21, 2016 at 15:25
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    That's not the point. Read the article please. What I meant by that is that you can switch from love to hate and vice-versa quickly, BUT that doesn't mean that it would always be the case. When an Uchiha killed a Senju, they do it with hatred. This hatred in no way would turn into love, simply because there is no reason for it to be so. However, in Sasuke's case, Sasuke loved Itachi. His hatred was from Itachi killing the rest of the clan. But even then, he never stopped loving him. This is evident from him crying for him and turned his goal into destroying Konoha after Tobi tells the truth. Oct 21, 2016 at 15:38
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    @AyaseEri, Okay I can see that. That actually makes more sense. So Itachi only implanted in him the Amaterasu in him to counter Tobi. Then Sasuke's MS activated after he discovered the truth about Itachi. Which is that scene of him crying and he opens his eyes. I'll edit my question to include that. It doesn't answer the question, but it's definitely helpful. Thanks! :) Oct 21, 2016 at 15:43

2 Answers 2

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Note that I am leaning more heavily into addressing whether this is a plot hole than actually answering whether Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan requires transplanting Mangekyō Sharingan (though I try to answer that too).

There's a point here that I don't see anyone making, and it's this: Sasuke was supposed to have a Mangekyō Sharingan when he came into this fight. Itachi repeatedly told Sasuke he needed to have the same eyes as him if he wanted any hope of defeating him. In other words, Itachi tried to set the stage so that the conditions for Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan would be met.

We all know what Itachi's true motives were, and that he didn't actually want to take Sasuke's eyes, but let's look at this a different way. I'm going to write about the character Itachi was playing--in other words, the act he was putting on. This Itachi is power hungry and wants the Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan for the sake of increasing his own power. But not only that, he needs it because he's going blind from using his own Mangekyō. He's desperate to avoid losing his light. He tells Sasuke to kill his best friend and achieve Mangekyō Sharingan, all for his (Itachi's) own sake. And he waits, even after Sasuke gains a regular Sharingan. This is ostensibly because stealing a regular Sharingan is not good enough for Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan.

Fast forward to the battle between Sasuke and Itachi. Itachi is really on a dire strait at this point. He can barely even see. In other words, he really needs to take a chance. He needs to take that Sharingan, whether or not he still gets that Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan in the end. He still hopes that he will, of course, but he's out of time.

Now, coming out of the act once more. We might consider that Itachi had planned out this battle very carefully. There's evidence for this--afterwards, we learn that he drew out the fight specifically so he could destroy the part of Orochimaru inhabiting Sasuke. Itachi also needs to make sure his secrets are buried with him after he dies. Thus, it wouldn't be too far-fetched to say that Itachi had a script in mind. And he probably had the basics for this script planned out for years. But perhaps there's one thing he didn't account for. And that would be Sasuke not achieving Mangekyō Sharingan. So, what's he supposed to do? His script largely requires himself to be trying to take Sasuke's Sharingan. Does he just rewrite the script? There's no time to think of anything different. What would his new character motivation even be in that case, if not to achieve Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan? What he had planned out will simply have to suffice. Any contradictions can simply be explained as his desperation for replenishing the light in his eyes.

So, the question that's being asked: Does one need to take a Mangekyō Sharingan from a blood relative to achieve Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan or will a regular Sharingan suffice? There are too few cases to know for absolute certain, but there is some evidence to suggest that you do need to take a Mangekyō Sharingan. The main evidence, of course, is simply that Itachi says so (I'd like to actually find where he says that and cite it if I can. The Wiki at least seems to confirm this: "Their vision can be restored by transplanting the Mangekyō Sharingan of an Uchiha with strong blood ties — ideally a sibling — thus awakening the so-called Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan"). So Itachi contradicts himself in the fight with Sasuke? Doesn't matter, because in reality he had no intention of actually taking Sasuke's eyes to achieve Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan. It was just an act he had to see through to the end.

As for the opposite conclusion, with only two cases, at best we can say that from an in-universe and out-of-universe perspective, it is simply uncertain whether a regular Sharingan would work. But the only lore we have states that Mangekyō Sharingan is required, so we should probably lean towards that conclusion.

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    "In other words, Itachi tried to set the stage so that the conditions for Eternal Mangekyō Sharingan would be met." would seem to contradict my answer here: anime.stackexchange.com/a/63945/19307 I just point it out because I love contradictions. I think any apparent contradiction here can be explained by the duality of Itachi's real motives and the act he's putting on. Jan 14 at 18:26
  • Great explanation! Thanks for the answer! Jan 17 at 21:29
  • @HunterTurner if this answer helped you, make sure to accept it by clicking the checkmark. Jan 20 at 2:28
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Here's a simpler thought: you can't obtain something greater if you have something lesser to offer.

We know that obtaining the Mangekyo Sharingan requires someone to witness someone close to them being killed or lost. Some of the more prolific wielders obtained this by killing someone close to them, with the notable exceptions of Madara and Itachi who only witnessed someone close to them die.

One of the changes when someone with the Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan undergoes is that the tomoe of the previous MS wielder is blended in with their own as a secondary pattern, similar to how a kaliedoscope blends in multiple pictures. This is evident with the final look of Sasuke's own EMS.

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With that, it makes sense that a prior Sharingan would have needed to have been an Mangekyo, since there wouldn't have been a new tomoe pattern to include into the kalideoscope.

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  • So does that mean that what Itachi was saying about wanting Sasuke's eyes is a plot hole? Or was he taking advantage of Sasuke's ignorance about the MS and just saying he wanted his eyes to put pressure on him? Aug 2, 2019 at 15:15
  • I'm not entirely sure of Itachi's motives in this context. It's likely that he knew his brother's eyes could achieve MS, but he had to push him in order to do this.
    – Makoto
    Aug 2, 2019 at 18:29

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