Manda is the giant summoned Snake of Orochimaru and later Sasuke Uchiha. He is classed in with the other Sannin Summons, Katsuyu and Gamabunta.
Not much is known of Manda's history, as we see very little of him at all in the series. However, we can assume he is at least as old as Orochimaru, because they seem to have a certain connection that must take time to grow. He is often referred to the "Snake King", which probably takes time to build enough reputation to be called that. He often talks about how strong he is in combat, so he would probably also have a long history in battle.
Manda made appearences in both the popular Naruto manga and anime. He
first appears in the anime in Naruto: Episode # 95. He first appears in the manga in Naruto: Chapter 195. Currently, there is no information on what type of inspiration the author had for the creation of Manda other than Orochimaru also needed a summon just like the other Sannin members, Tsunade and Jiraiya.
Manda is a very large creature, even as summons go. His most distinct physical feature is his slim width, and his long length, identical to a very large snake. Going by how realistic snakes look, Manda's body shape indicates he should be a venomous-type snake, this is also known as "viper." However, he sometimes acts like a constrictor in battle, so it is hard to tell if he really is one or the other. The best conclusion we can make is that he is somewhat both, as we see that he has attributes to both types of snakes.
Manda's Great Size
Manda also has a unique color scheme to him, and it also has very strong similarities to that of Orochimaru. His solid color is a deep, almost "plum" type purple, very close if not identical to what Orochimaru is often compared to. Along with his solid purple scales, he also has a long thin black stripe that goes down his body in a circular motion. This stripe goes all the way down to the tip of his tail, and as far up to the base of his head. HIs head also has four different horn-like spikes, these aren't sharp, but are more rounded. One set of two is longer, the other is shorter and the longer set comes first on his head. His eyes are a very distinct color of green, but they are usually difficult to see as he is usually seen from a more distant view.
Out of all the Sannin Summons, Manda probably has the most evil, distinct, and "loud" personality. He often brags about his power and strength, even though we don't know much of his combat history. It is often presumed that he doesn't serve those very lightly, so Orochimaru must have done something to make Manda fear him, or simply beat him in battle.
Major Story Arcs
Search For Tsunade Arc
This is where we are first introduced to Manda, right in the middle of when the Sannin were battling each other. When it was just them, it had seemed like a pretty even match, but when Tsunade began to show the signs of a summoning technique both Orochimaru and Jiraiya began to prepare to summon themselves. All three performed the art at the exact same time, and we see all three rising fast up in the sky, due to the sheer size of their summons. After the smoke is cleared, we see Katsuyu, the Slug Princess, Tsunade's summon. We also see Gamabunta, or Jiraiya's main summon, and Manda, summoned by Orochimaru with the help of Kabuto. The help was required because Hiruzen Sarutobi used an ancient jutsu to remove the use of Orochimaru's arms, so he could perform any justu's. After they are summoned, Katsuyu makes the first move with her Sticky Acid Spit technique by shooting it at Manda, however he dodges it and the spit his the rock Manda was quickly moving around. Then we see Manda easily blitz Katsuyu, and he began to constrict her, causing the summon to swell with the applied pressure.
Manda Battling Katsuyu & Gamabunta
She escaped using her Slug Great Division technique just as Gamabunta attempted to jab his dagger through Manda's head. However, he easily chomped down on it with his powerful jaw. After that, it was a bit of a tugging war on the dagger, but Manda quickly yanked it out of Gamabunta's hand and sent it flying with a quick twist of his head. It was headed straight for the giant toad, but he jumped out of the way with his powerful hind legs, and the dagger landed just in front of Katsuyu. Now that Gamabunta had some distance from Manda, Jiraiya decided to use ninjutsu instead of the taijutsu he was previously using that seemed to be failing. Using a fire technique matched with Gamabunta's toad oil created a very large stream of fire, and Jiraiya was certain it would have burned Manda, Orochimaru, and Kabuto. After the smoke cleared, it appeared they had been burned because remains of Manda's skin were still burning in ashes. However, this had been a trick, because Manda had actually buried himself underground, avoiding what would have surely killed him. This feat showed his great speed, and he quickly threw his tail in front of Gamabunta, distracting the toad while he arose from behind with his head and front side, mouth wide open and large enough to swallow Gamabunta whole. Just as he was about to bite the toad, Tsunade cam with the large dagger and drove it through Manda's head, preventing any movement of his jaw and ultimately his body because of the pain it would cause. After that, he warned Orochimaru that he would pay the next time they met because of all the fuss he had caused him that day, and with that he and the other summons dispersed to wherever they were originally summoned from.
Itachi Pursuit Arc
Manda Shortly Before His Death
Manda was summoned again later in Part 2, but this time by Sasuke Uchiha. Right before he was summoned, Sasuke was battling Deidara and Sasuke was going toe-to-toe with him. Nearing the end of the battle, they began to pull out their more powerful techniques, until finally Deidara decided to use his most powerful technique, an explosion that blasts out as much as ten kilometers. Right before he did this, Sasuke summoned Manda to protect him from the blast. The safest place he could think of was inside Manda's mouth, protecting him from all the damage from the blast. It did work, however Manda was seriously injured after the blast. He later died from the injuries caused by Deidara's explosion. After his death, Kabuto decided to create another snake summon, called Manda II that was created from the original Manda. This was done by Kabuto collecting cell samples from the deceased Manda, using those to rebuild his structure and power into an even larger creature, called Manda II.
Powers & Abilities
Even though Manda never performed any jutsu's or ninja arts, he was extremely powerful physically. This made up for his lack of jutsu's, as seen his fight with the other Sannin Summons. He showed his speed in dodging from Katsuyu's acid, then blitzing her immediately afterwords. We also see the strength of his coiling body when Katsuyu was forced to use her Slug Great Division technique to get out of Manda's grip.
Manda About To Dodge Katsuyu's Acid
We also get to see a bit of Manda's durability in his last appearance with Deidara and Sasuke Uchiha. When he was summoned to protect Sasuke from Deidara's blast, he was able to stay alive shortly afterwords with most of his body intact. This is a huge feat because we can compare it to all of the landscape damage the blast caused to the area, it could have been assumed Manda would have been obliterated with everything else in the ten kilometer radius. This is another similarity he has with realistic snakes, his tough skin.
Manda appears in many of the Naruto games, especially the Ultimate series. He is often seen being used as a scene or background, such as players having the option of battling atop of the giant snake's head. He is also shown in certain scenes that are shown but are not playable.