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Gold Knight
March 17, 2007, 03:02 AM
First of all, to all my loyal readers... thank you all for your great support that's kept me going for so long. Unfortunately, I have some bad news.

I'm sorry about this, but RL has unfortunately struck in a big way for me, and I have to be away enough that I won't be able to do my Ten Comments anymore in its normal format. Meaning, it won't be as detailed an analysis, rather more just quick thoughts, and no accompanying images.

That's actually how my Comments used to be, back on Naruto Forums, when Part 2 started. Quick enough for me to type in under 30 minutes, because I used to still be in college at the time and didn't have the time for anything more than that back then either.

Though I know it won't be as fun reading as before, I do still have a need to express my thoughts on the most recent Naruto chapters. I'm too much of a Narutard just to keep quiet!

So I'm creating this thread mainly for everybody who would still like to discuss with me about the latest Naruto chapters. As well as just throw out my thoughts about every chapter. And rate 'em. In quick fashion. Rather than doing each chapter in separate threads, this will be a continuing thread, at least until I'm able to return to doing more detailed Ten Comments later on ^^

And I do have a hour to spare, so here goes for both Chapters 345 and 346.

EDIT: I am adding future chapter reviews to this first post, and I'm arranging them from bottom to top. I've also decided to add cover images as well, just to make it easier to find the chapters you want.

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Sorry for the lateness everybody. I know what I said - that I'd do a full review for 350.

But that was before I read the chapter, and well, I think I'm going to save the extra treatment for another chapter - because I really didn't find that much to talk about that I didn't already say something about before, to be honest ^^;

That and I'm still a little bit preoccupied even today unfortunately... so if you guys don't mind I'll just do another short 10 comments for this one, too. (Maybe I'll do the full review next time).

Though it is still my 50th Naruto review here at Mangahelpers, so yay for anniversaries! xD

Ok, on to the chapter itself. Once again Kylara has to get the credit for providing the full chapter for us, Hisshouburaiken for translating, and also thanks to NBST for the scanlation as well as everybody else who did one.

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Chapter 350: Ground-Breaking News!

http://img407.imageshack.us/img407/233/nbstnaruto3500102qn6.th.jpg (http://img407.imageshack.us/my.php?image=nbstnaruto3500102qn6.jpg)

Cover: Uhm, yes. Well, compare the colored spread we got for Naruto to what the Bleach fans got last week (best covers I've seen in forever), and I think it's probably obvious why I didn't feel very enthusiastic about this one.

Not only did it not satisfy by choosing to not reveal the official colors of Sasuke's new comrades yet, it wasn't even a dynamic spread either.

Comment 1:

Actually, I don't blame Naruto for misunderstanding the situation when Sakura came to his door and knocked on it. Granted, they're teammates, but it's usually not the girl who comes knockin'. Hehe, and Sakura's angry reactions is starting to make me think that she's just hiding her feelings, too.

I wonder if Naruto's sleeping habits have changed lately because of his injured arm (since he overslept). That wound sure is taking him a while to heal fully, even with the Kyuubi inside him.

Comment 2:

Jiraiya's back, eh? Somehow I can't help but feel that Kishimoto has seen the Shippuden anime and realized he needed to give us more scenes with both Jiraiya and Tsunade in the manga, too.

Comment 3.

So Naruto and Sakura now knows that Sasuke defeated Orochimaru, if he didn't outright kill him at least.

While not unexpected, I do like that Kishimoto didn't take his sweet time in letting them hear the rumors too, since they certainly seem to have already spread over all the Five Lands.

Comment 4.

Ah, Naruto, Naruto. First he says that he knew Sasuke would free himself all along (if that's true, why the heck did he worry so much, heh) - and then he goes and naively expects Sasuke to be coming home. Sometimes I get the feeling Naruto actually doesn't know Sasuke ALL that well...

Comment 5.

Okay, so we get a change of scenery, and we see Team Sasuke facing down an army of Cursed Seal monsters. And Sasuke asks Karin to apparently scan them all to see if Juugo is one of them...?

Suigetsu would seem to confirm it later that one of her abilities is apparently "finding." Does she have an sixth sense or something that works like the Byakugan?

And man, I guess Cursed Seal monsters weren't that rare after all. I wonder if they were all rejected concepts by Kishimoto while he was inventing the Sound Four, heh. Orochimaru must have had them all locked up because he couldn't keep them all under his watch, and they'd probably bring too much attention to him if they ever did get out of control...

Comment 6.

Oh, man, so Sasuke didn't kill that dude last chapter after all. Though Suigetsu certainly seems to believe it's due to Sasuke being a Leaf Ninja, heh, but I wonder if Kishimoto is just trying to convince us that Naruto and Sakura's former teammate is still on the side of good.

Still... even Leaf Ninja kill, too, don't they? I know I saw Kakashi kill, before. I know the Leaf are more of pacifists than ninja from other countries, partly thanks to Sandaime's teachings, but, well, if Kishimoto is trying to create the impression that Leaf Ninja (ie. Naruto) will somehow be failures if they kill too often, that idea isn't going to be very popular with the fans, I think.

But either way, right there, we probably just got a hint that Naruto is probably never going to be much of a killer in the entire series. Not that I could see him being one anyway.

Comment 7.

Kinda annoying that one second we see a whole army hissing and snarling at Team Sasuke, and the next page they're all on their backsides gasping for breath and mercy. And we didn't get to see any action at all.

I guess the point was just to let us know that Team Sasuke was definitely formidable, but c'mon, Kishimoto, at least one lousy page of exciting action, even if it is of Sasuke and Suigetsu swinging their swords, wouldn't have hurt.

But instead we just got a guy moaning, "too strong," right before he loses consciousness. Yeah, we'll have to take your word for it. Wuss.

Comment 8.

Once again we get a little Suigetsu-Karin "internal conflict" where this time, Karin misdirects Suigetsu in going one way and she goes off the other way with Sasuke. More than ever now, Karin really seems like a spoiled kid to me. I'm not quite liking her as much as I did at the start, even though this scene was still mildly amusing.

What surprises me is Sasuke went along with it without even bothering to call Suigetsu back. He must have been more concerned with finding Juugo at the time.

I think the one thing that really made an impression on me, though, was that Sasuke hasn't changed ALL that much.

'Would you let me go? I can walk fine on my own.' What does that remind you of...? How about the next-to-last panel of this oldie? Heh. (http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/454/naruto36018qo1.jpg) Same ol' Sasuke.

Comment 9.

Hmmm, so we get our first real look at Juugo's full face. He seems to me more like a psychotic punk than anything else. You guys know something though? It'd be interesting if he actually turned out to be the reverse of that, and that he was actually a very nice guy who wouldn't even hurt a bug. But having been locked up for so long probably put his "rage illness" in overtime.

Comment 10.

So, big battle coming up between Sasuke and Juugo next chapter? I hope we'll get to see some REAL action this time, unlike when they were fighting the monsters. Well, I'd like to see Juugo actually put a scare in Sasuke. I sort of think the biggest reason Sasuke wanted Juugo is for his fighting prowess, so...

FINAL VERDICT: Okay, hate to say this, but this wasn't the most memorable chapter ever. I think Kishimoto is back to his old habits of sort of slowing down the pace again. But a chapter that gave me this much trouble finding something to talk about, isn't a particularly great one at all. Just a lead-in to the next chapter, a filler, though I am glad Naruto and Sakura found out about Sasuke's escape, and that we finally got to the final member of Team Sasuke. So... a 4 it is this time.

RATING: 4 of 5

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Once again, Kylara has come to our rescue here with the RAW. Consider yourself lucky we have *such* a fantastic girl as her hanging out here who's willing to spend some of her valuable time scanning her mags in order to help us out! Thanks also to Hisshou for his terrific translation and Dynamic Dragon for his MQ scan, and Japflap for continuing to do their terrific HQs!

Chapter 349: North Base!

http://img398.imageshack.us/img398/8370/page1011jp2.th.jpg (http://img398.imageshack.us/my.php?image=page1011jp2.jpg)

Comment 1:

Okay, so I get the North Hideout's supposed to be full of terrifying, twisted human experiments due to it being Orochimaru's primary laboratory.

What I don't get is why Karin seemed so disgusted when talking about the "horrible, unnatural monsters." I mean, as one of Orochimaru's "dedicated followers," she was likely to have a hand in some of these creations, too! Yes, she could just have been nervous about the inevitable riot that would take place there shortly, but I still had the feeling she was somehow disgusted with the place. Which did strike me as kinda odd. Maybe she just wanted to try to find a little more romantic place for her and Sasuke to be, heh.

Comment 2:

Ah, so we get the answer to Juugo's cryptic ramblings at the end of the last chapter - he was thinking of which he'd rather want to kill right now, a guy or a girl. Still kinda twisted, but definitely not as bad as we all thought he was talking about at first!

Comment 3.

Suigetsu sure likes to take a lot of breaks to sip some water (assuming that's what it is). Karin accused him of being tired a lot due to carrying Zabuza's blade around. Heh, well, it'll build up his stamina with time, I guess. I'm guessing he wasn't too big on endurance before.

I'm kinda curious about whether he has to drink a lot of water in order to replenish himself or not. He also seemed to be just fine when walking on water or close to it (as on the bridge), but not on land. Hmm.

Either way, I don't get the sense he's really a "slacker" as Karin called him. It's almost as though he *has* to stop to rest one way or another. Wonder how Sasuke feels about that slowing down the progress - but he naturally hasn't said much about it to this point.

Comment 4.

Karin, incidentally, seems *really* flaky right now. She's obviously trying hard to hook up with Sasuke but she still seems very embarrassed if her feelings are in any way suspected or revealed to Suigetsu. Which all does seem to imply that she's truthfully romantically interested in Sasuke, whether it's because she's attracted to power or just a pretty boy... or both, I guess!

I can't help but wonder if she's determinely trying to act like an amateur at hiding her feelings or she has an ulterior motive in seeming so, though. I think that I'd like for the latter to be true - because if Karin's just being a great actress right now instead of being so obvious, then it'd only add to the drama and the story even more.

Unfortunately I don't think that's the case here. She really is nuts about him - or just plain nuts!

Comment 5.

Good! Now we get the answer to why Suigetsu went along with Sasuke: he has his own agenda, too. Maybe they're both out for revenge. I like that our questions were answered pretty early on.

Something tells me Suigetsu will have his own back-story that'll be revealed pretty soon.

Comment 6.

I absolutely loved the subtle humor in the page where Suigetsu accused Juugo of being crazy of coming to Orochimaru "under his own will," and Sasuke looking over to him and seeming a little put off by that comment. Priceless stuff.

Would have totally rocked too if Suigetsu actually knew that Sasuke did the same thing, but wanted to egg him on anyway.

Comment 7.

So Juugo, somebody who seemingly can't control his powerful "killing intent," is, basically, the origin of the Cursed Seal. Excellent!

One of the things I was so nervous about after Orochimaru's defeat was that Kishimoto would just totally skim over the whole history of the Cursed Seals and how their power operated, but looks like we're going to get our answers on all that, too. Or maybe we already did with this chapter.

It would also explain why Orochimaru couldn't take away Sasuke's Cursed Seal during his fight with him - he actually didn't have any power over it after all.

Think vampires - Orochimaru's had Juugo's blood - or enzymes if you want to get detailed - on his fangs, he went to bite Sasuke's neck, the venom bestowed the Seal on his victim, and the Seal changed Sasuke into another Juugo. Or would have.

Without taking the proper methods to "stop" the Seal from overtaking his body, it would have killed him or made him incapable of controlling himself, and maybe that's what Tayuya meant by that it would enslave him to Orochimaru - just like Juugo right now. Well, or maybe most victims.

Comment 8.

I was really afraid when I saw the dude that was tearing up the place, thinking at first that this guy was Juugo. I was like, hadn't we already seen this guy before? Remember Jiroubou of the Sound Four? Yeah, this guy seemed like his twin brother or something.

If he HAD turned out to be Juugo, I would have had serious doubts about Kishimoto's creativity - he really would have seemed like he was running out of character designs. I needn't have worried.

Must have been Kishimoto wanting to psych the readers out a little bit. He got me.

Comment 9.

I actually didn't expect Sasuke to be able to take care of "Jiroubou #2" in a single sword stroke. Looks like Karin shouldn't have worried either!

Comment 10.

So, Juugo is going to kill a girl if one opens the door eh? Heh, I predict already we're going to get a little scary moment where it seems like Karin is gonna open the door next chapter. Mark my words.

Juugo's face being revealed above the nose almost makes me think he could be related somehow to the Akatsuki leader. He seems to have the same hair and facial shape. Eyes of course are different - no double pupils - but I can't help but think Kishimoto decided to go with a different design for the Leader altogether and used another design he had in mind for him for Juugo instead. Guess we'll see.

FINAL VERDICT: Another very good chapter, though a bit too much on the talky side and not enough action, so I'm going to have to give it less than a 5 rating. Lots of answers though which made me happy.

RATING: 4.5 of 5

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Thanks to Kylara for the RAW again! And Hisshou for his translation and Cez & Kokotas for their great MQ scanlation.

Chapter 348: The Next One!

http://img291.imageshack.us/img291/6774/001ff7.th.png (http://img291.imageshack.us/my.php?image=001ff7.png)

Cover: Suigetsu.

Seems like Kishimoto's trying to do something a little different with him here, eh? Not smiling so much here - he's almost solemn. Almost seems as though he's saying a prayer, isn't he?

Karin's probably going to be on the next chapter cover.

Comment 1:

Suigetsu shoots the question that's been on my mind the last two weeks. What exactly is Sasuke up to?

Sasuke didn't really give us a definite answer though, but he did say that he needed a full platoon to pull off the plan he had in mind effectively. So, why Suigetsu, Karin, and Juugo? Sasuke here says he had selected them all very long ago for their particular abilities.

I couldn't help but think of Shikamaru; he's somebody else who would also think that far ahead - remember how he had come up with a plan in order for his team to be able to defeat Hidan and Kakuzu? Even though Ino and Chouji weren't as useful as Kakashi was in the end, they did each do their part for him.

So is Sasuke developing Shikamaru tendencies? Heh. Well, maybe not all the way. Shikamaru could probably come up with a plan using anybody he had around him. Sasuke might have had to think very carefully about which shinobi to choose because he couldn't do likewise...

Comment 2:

Suigetsu also brings up why he definitely wouldn't like Karin: they were on opposite sides of the fence as far as their feelings about Orochimaru were concerned.

Whereas Suigetsu seemed to bear some sort of grudge against his former captor for having experimented and imprisoned him for so long, Karin apparently is devoted to Orochimaru.

But she's maybe not SO devoted to Orochimaru as he thinks... but I'll get to that in a bit.

Comment 3.

So what are Karin's "unique abilities" that made Sasuke want her on his team so much?

Suigetsu's agreement with Sasuke by saying "oh yeah, she's unique, I'll give her that," really makes me wonder. Especially coming from him...

Comment 4.

Boy, Orochimaru sure liked having prisoners. I wonder how well he took care of them...

Makes me wonder if that's how Karin and Suigetsu fell into his clutches as well, both originally prisoners.

I had to laugh when one of the prisoners thought that the only reason Sasuke came there was to free them.

But man, how much time exactly went by since Sasuke defeated Orochimaru? It didn't take long for the rumors to spread all over? I guess Sasuke and Suigetsu *had* been walking around, though... must have been a week or so.

Comment 5.

Karin's first appearance was kinda eye-opening wasn't it? I loved that she seemed so accusing at the start. "I knew it!" Guess that's the "shitty attitude" Suigetsu mentioned earlier - she definitely seems "bossy."

I have a hard time deciding what the appropriate nickname for her would be ... Glasses? Legs? Spiky? Nerd? Heh.

Although I think I know what all the SasuNaru fans would probably call her, but I want to keep this review PG-rated...

Anyway, she definitely has a different look from the other female kunoichi in the series. Closest would be Kurenai, but she definitely doesn't seem as warm...

I can't help but think of her being a black-haired, female version of Kabuto, though. Heh, so now, not only does Sasuke have a mini-Kisame on his side, he also has a female Kabuto? Wonder if she can heal at all...

Comment 6.

Kishimoto's strength of dialogue writing is really shining through here. We're already becoming accustomed to Suigetsu after only a span of two chapters, and we's starting to get a sense of who he is and how he thinks.

When Sasuke tells him to go free the prisoners, Suigetsu was all like, "still acting like the boss, eh?" He seems somewhat macho in that he doesn't want Sasuke to "look down" on him so he's constantly reminding Sasuke that he doesn't consider him the "boss."

Comment 7.

And that's not even all. When Suigetsu goes to free the prisoners, he told them to spread the word that Sasuke was bringing "peace and safety to the world." He might as well be like, "Sasuke's fighting for Truth, Justice, and the Konoha Way!!!"

Seems like Suigetsu's got a twisted sense of humor. He knew that'd bother Sasuke. I have a feeling Suigetsu's popularity is going to just rise after this chapter. He's definitely personable.

Comment 8.

Back to Sasuke and Karin. Initially Karin was all adamant and refusing to go, then suddenly she changed her mind and "warmed up to Sasuke" as only a fangirl can.

But.... is she so much a Sasuke fangirl, or was she just trying to play him?

I think when the realization hit her that Sasuke did indeed defeat Orochimaru, then her devotion to her former master became obscure. And she decided to go over to Sasuke's side then, and that was when she started putting the moves on.

So she might not be *THAT* lovestruck with Sasuke, but is just trying to charm him into thinking that she could be somebody he can trust. I have a feeling she's "faking" most of it, though I do think she's genuinely attracted to him either way.

Whatever the case, I can imagine this happening in real life, so I have no problem with it. As for everybody who complains, "ugh, not another Sasuke fangirl!" Well - Sasuke was established early on as being a girl magnet, so I actually think Kishimoto is just saying here that Sasuke's "still got it," ya know? We haven't had too many antics lately where girls are all crazy over Sasuke, because he's been nowhere to be seen.

Kishimoto, I believe, just wants to re-establish that part about Sasuke in Part 2 that we already knew from Part 1. So I'm totally fine with it. It also brings up all kinds of interesting drama later on for whenever Sakura or Ino might run into Karin.

Comment 9.

So Kishimoto must have liked the Hulk movie, maybe? Not only can Suigetsu transform to water, he can also control his body parts to grow bigger, too? I guess that's not so surprising, though... I mean, he obviously CAN control his body molecules to begin with...

Makes him more interesting than just a "water guy" in my book, though, so I'm glad.

Comment 10.

SO, Juugo. Uh-oh. He must have been involved in a lot of bathroom scandals while in prison...

Creepy is all I can say. But I can see a lot of people making a *LOT* of jokes as a result of what he said this page... it's definitely got people talking. So all I can say is that Kishimoto did his magic again. Another interesting character coming up, definitely...

FINAL VERDICT: Awesome chapter, I think. 'Team Sasuke' definitely seems to be having a lot of interesting characters, Suigetsu is pretty cool, and Karin is an intriguing character to me. The dialogue, art, and the overall story in this one was top notch.

RATING: 5 of 5

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Sorry guys, I wasn't able to even access MH all week, so I just now saw everybody's comments! xD

I'm glad that some of you guys don't seem to mind the downgraded version of my reviews. =) I'll try to reply with more of my thoughts to everybody's posts later on but right now let me just get my thoughts on 347 out ^^

Chapter 347: Side Trip!!

http://img108.imageshack.us/img108/4391/ch347ukpage02tk4.th.png (http://img108.imageshack.us/my.php?image=ch347ukpage02tk4.png)

1. Juugo from the North Base? Karin from the South Base? Aha, so Sasuke IS trying to form a group... for what purpose? Probably just to make the odds against the Akatsuki a little better?

In response to Iwanin's post, I certainly hope it's a little more interesting than just having a Rock nin, Wind nin, etc. to go with Suigetsu being a Water nin. I already got my fill of "elemental buddies" from watching the Ghost Rider movie! xD

2. So, how does Suigetsu look like? Got our answer to that one here. Long hair, intense eyes, and the teeth of a piranha.

I guess you could call my first impression pretty much neutral on his design, it wasn't until later in the story I started to appreciate it a little better.

3. Suigetsu's dislike of Juugo and Karin seems to show that he wasn't expecting Sasuke to choose these two in particular. Could it be that there are more others around that Sasuke COULD have picked to go with him? I suppose Orochimaru probably had a lot of prisoners...

You know, what is the nature of Suigetsu's dislike of the others, though? Is it because Suigetsu's disgusted by their violent natures? This is what I first thought when he seemed said here "what does that say about you Sasuke that you picked them..."

But I think the opposite is probably true - Suigetsu might not like them because he considers them "weak and emotional" possibly. Still, I believe Sasuke doesn't care too much about their personalities as long as they're all *powerful* enough to be able to face down the Akatsuki. Guess we'll see.

4. Sasuke's bossy attitude amused me as much as it seemed to irrirate Suigetsu. That might be something that might get Sasuke in trouble later on.

Suigetsu is another "God of Flash," eh? Y'know, I think if a guy in the nude was right behind me, I mean, RIGHT there, I think my heart would probably have skipped a beat... whether I killed Orochimaru or not. Sasuke must have had ice in his veins...

5. Oh wow, Zabuza is actually mentioned in this chapter as Suigetsu's "senior". Whaddaya know? Maybe my theory of Suigetsu being the love child of Zabuza and Haku wasn't that far off after all! Ha!

Makes me think Suigetsu could possibly be from the Momochi clan. Of course, we don't know just how many clans in the Water Country exhibit such distinguishing features as razor-sharp teeth. There could be more clans and they could all be half-fish!

Whatever the case, here's a little quick drawing I did to show the differences between Suigetsu and Zabuza, heh.

http://img474.imageshack.us/img474/268/suigetsuzabuzafa5.th.png (http://img474.imageshack.us/my.php?image=suigetsuzabuzafa5.png)

Originally posted on my DeviantArt. (http://www.deviantart.com/deviation/51538099/) =)

6. Hah, so Konohamaru's finally learned Kage Bunshin? And what does he use it for? What else?

You guys probably remember that Naruto was able to beat Konohamaru's instructor, Ebisu, by using Mass Kage Bunshin and then turning them all into naked girls hugging the stuffings out of him.

So I'm really not surprised at all that Konohamaru was inspired enough to do a similar trick. "Double Knockout Girls!"

7. But who the hell inspired Konohamaru to do "Double Knockout Guys!???"

I blame the yaoi fangirls. One of them must have gotten into the series and bribed him into doing it!! (LoL @ Sakura's reaction - she's been exposed as a pervert after all!)

(Seriously, this chapter almost seemed like Kishimoto took a break and just let a fan write the plot instead of him!)

Ah well, hope you fangirls enjoyed the eye candy!

8. The Great Naruto Bridge! Actually didn't expect Kishimoto to EVER return to the Land of the Waves at all. It's a nice homage to the first part - the Zabuza arc was what got many of us really loving Naruto - and it's pretty amusing to have seen Sasuke's reaction to the name of the bridge. Just as I would've imagined, though, he just said "hmph."

Still, again, it feels as though a fan was writing the plot for this chapter.

9. THE RETURN OF ZABUZA'S BLADE!!! Awesome. And it's not rusty eh?

I loved Zabuza as a bad guy, and I don't believe Suigetsu will be as cool as him, but what the heck. It sure brings back the good memories.

Funny though to see Suigetsu struggle to just hold it - I wonder how good he'll actually be with it, though, considering he probably hasn't been able to train with a similar sword for years, trapped in that container as he was? Maybe he hadn't been a prisoner for so many years as Sasuke, though...

Seems like Suigetsu's definitely from Kirigakure, though, if he's been training to try to become one of the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist.

10. So who's this at the end of the chapter? Karin? Definitely a female, though...

Looks like we're going to have a Team Sasuke - so I definitely predict a confrontation between Team 7 and Team Sasuke at some point.

FINAL VERDICT: This was a surprising chapter. As I said, it almost seemed like a fan wrote the plot for the chapter. It was also disorienting how Sasuke and Suigetsu just seemed to immediately move from Orochimaru's hideout to the Water Country, without much pretense. The Konohamaru antic also seemed to be out of place - not saying that Kishimoto shouldn't have included something like that, but he probably should just have saved that for another occasion. This chapter would have been better if it just concentrated on Sasuke and Suigetsu all the way through (and maybe already introduced one of the other two eventual companions). I AM curious to see where all this leads to...

RATING: 4 of 5

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Chapter 346: The Secret of the New Jutsu!!

http://img108.imageshack.us/img108/5507/ch346ukpage01fj3.th.png (http://img108.imageshack.us/my.php?image=ch346ukpage01fj3.png)

1. Another Sasuke cover? Kishimoto's obviously making up for lost time - though it's a rather cool cover, and I'm glad that there's still hints that Sasuke may be summoning snakes himself at a later point. This makes me wonder, though, just what will be Sakura's reaction when she finds out her own animals will probably be slugs... poor girl!

But then again, she'd probably prefer slugs to snakes anyway. These reptiles tend to scare girls, don't they?

2. Woah, Sasuke actually pulled Kabuto into Orochimaru's dimension with his own Sharingan? It seems as though the Sharingan must have that ability as well - and Orochimaru must have possessed it through his own eyes, perhaps? Or mouth... >.>

I wonder if we'll ever find out if Sasuke has his own dimension where he's able to toy with his opponent's minds, like Itachi's (when he trapped the Kakashi clone.) Guess we'll find out in time, but I think he does. Wonder if Kakashi does though...

3. Not only did Sasuke pull Kabuto into the dimension though, it almost seemed as though he was showing a flashback directly to him of what had already transpired between Sasuke and Orochimaru. So perhaps not so much taking him to a dimension as he was just sending images into his mind? Odd...

4. Woa. The three-headed monster coming up behind Sasuke almost seemed to be a bijuu too. Three heads? I wonder... well, the Kyuubi did seem to indicate that Sasuke had a beast inside him too. I guess we're seeing it in action here. (This is almost feeling like Blue Dragon now...)

5. Orochimaru's rant about his 'destiny' - I have to say I'm just completely stunned. I had expected Kishimoto to make Orochimaru more of a permanent fixture as a villain always plotting in the background while events were happening all around him. Here we obviously see Orochimaru being completely defeated and humiliated again. And spout some denial as he went down. I feel for the Oro fans.

6. But wait. Kabuto at first thought Orochimaru was dead, but it seems as though Sasuke took him over, instead of vice versa. So are we to assume that Sasuke is now in control of "that" dimension, and he has Orochimaru within his mind? Wonder if that'll be how Sasuke will be able to obtain Orochimaru's own powers (it almost seemed as though Oro just trained him to be better at his own abilities). Hence the possible snake summonings later on...?

So will Orochimaru's mind become like the devil on Sasuke's shoulder, always tempting him to do something the angel on his other shoulder (most likely Naruto) will warn him against doing? Heh.

7. Well, I initially didn't think there was that much of a difference between Naruto's Rasen Shuriken and his usual Rasengan when we saw him hit Kakuzu with it, besides just more power, but here we get a very nice example of what exactly the fuuton properities added to the Rasengan. Complete cellular collapse. I wonder if Kakuzu actually felt any pain at the end, or his body just went completely numb - paralyzed!

8. Uh-oh, another forbidden technique. Figures. Poor Naruto, having all these setbacks one after another even as he's feeling like he's accomplished stuff. Though he HAS defeated an Akatsuki, the jutsu ends up doing some damage to Naruto's own hand as well. Curses!

Well, although Naruto always has the Kyuubi inside him to heal him... but I'm sure Tsunade took that under consideration as well as her own medical jutsus...

9. Heh, Naruto still stubborn as always.

10. Suigetsu eh? I wonder if Sasuke's going to start his own troupe of companions, just 'cause he knows he can't face the Akatsuki all by himself (probably would be suicide.) A team of his own? Hmm... well anyways, as to who Suigetsu is, my bet is on the love child of Zabuza and Haku. Ok, just kidding. I don't think he's related to Kimimaro either, though I did immediately think of him when I saw the back of Suigetsu's head!

Most likely just a new character. Also, my respect for Sasuke keeps going up. He's obviously still his own man, and he isn't so distant that he's not going to consider helping others as well if it works towards his own plan.

FINAL VERDICT: Again I enjoyed the chapter, though I was very disappointed at Orochimaru's sudden downfall. I sometimes wonder if Kishimoto does cater to the fans' demands, because Orochimaru was never really that popular in Japan as a character. So instead of having him being more of a prominent villain, Kishimoto's made him into almost a secondary character. Oh well. However, I have to say the storytelling continues to be very good, with more surprising twists lately than we've had in quite a while. New developments too which are very welcome...

RATING: 5 of 5

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Thanks to Kylara for the RAWs (wee, she's our savior!), and Hisshou, Winterlion for the translations and Des, and Japflap for the awesome scans.

Chapter 345: Ritual!

http://img155.imageshack.us/img155/83/ch345ukpage01ii0.th.png (http://img155.imageshack.us/my.php?image=ch345ukpage01ii0.png)

1. I laughed my head off at the cover. Have you ever seen a more suggestive cover than that one in the entire series? Kishimoto might as well have labelled Orochimaru "PEDOPHILE" on his forehead here and be done with it.

As for the chapter itself. Well, three things jumped out at me at the outset.

2. Orochimaru's 'white snake' blood actually emits a numbing poison? That'd be even more dangerous than Sasori's mechs! No scorpion's tail necessary to sting you into near-death, just breathing the air will do?

Not to mention, it'd take you by surprise if you didn't know about it beforehand.

3. Well can't blame Sasuke for turning off his CS2, he had no clue about the effect of the snake's "bodily fluids" and thought the battle was over. I would have too.

4. And how exactly did Orochimaru trap Sasuke into his "dimension?" Did he just swallow Sasuke up? If you reread the chapter you'll see what I mean: there was no real indication of exactly how Orochimaru mentally forced Sasuke into his morbid soul transfer process.

5. At first, I thought Sasuke's Sharingan had something to do with it, but I suppose he was just activating it so that he could be able to at least fight.

6. Then there was the much-anticipated Itachi and Orochimaru's flashback. It was great to finally see that matter settled: Itachi had indeed defeated and even humiliated Orochimaru, and we see why the ol' snake left the Akatsuki. Though I was stunned to see Itachi gain his victory so... easily. No wonder Orochimaru feared Itachi so much. Sorry Oro fans, but we got the final answer to THAT particular argument.

That is, Orochimaru did indeed lose to Itachi in an actual battle, and it wasn't just that he left to avoid a fight. Thing is, I wonder what led them to having to fight. Was Itachi required to challenge Orochimaru for being the Konoha representative of the Akatsuki?

I also can just see Itachi's 'binding jutsu,' with the stakes and everything, being copied in the video games eventually, for both Itachi and Sasuke!

7. Heh, never thought we'd see Orochimaru's former body again - the first one we saw when he fought Sandaime (and then again when Tsunade punched his nose off.) You know, the young boy who actually didn't look that far removed from Orochimaru - would be creepy if he was actually his son.

Trapped within Orochimaru's dimension, along with Genryussai, this must have meant that these guys were still a part of Orochimaru's mind, despite their "physical deaths." I wonder if he's ever able to "free" these spirits and use them again as followers later on.

8. Then when Kabuto was musing about having to do the soul transfer ritual (not knowing it was already going on - I guess he actually didn't know Sasuke was coming to battle Orochimaru after all)...we got a glimpse of Orochimaru's old hand, still with its Akatsuki ring on it. I have a feeling that will be important to remember at some point.

9. When Kabuto peeked into the chamber to see what was going on, we saw Sasuke standing (no blood on him!) and Orochimaru's white snake body fallen, his eyes looking mightily peculiar. What was up with that? Looked almost as though Sasuke's Sharingan had blinded him.

10. Finally, the suspenseful ending of the chapter was very well done and was more interesting than I had expected it to be. Did Sasuke or Orochimaru win? Good stuff to talk about in front of a water cooler and argue for a week afterward. I actually didn't think Kishimoto would reveal the truth until a long time, but turns out I was wrong on that.

FINAL VERDICT: I did enjoy the chapter a lot. My only minor complaint was that Orochimaru's "soul transfer dimension" was somewhat kiddish-looking and not as intimidating as I would have liked it to look. I mean, I liked how Orochimaru "took over" Genryussai's body much better, you know, the awesome scene where we saw a huge illusion of a gigantic snake rearing up around Genryuusai, hissing, and more than ready to gobble up its unfortunate victim. Oh well, I'm sure Orochimaru's dimension will look better in the anime, though.

RATING: 5 of 5

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REMINDER!!! Please be patient with me, I won't be able to answer replies as quickly as I used to. Feel free to comment, though - I WILL read your posts and reply eventually.

mageofdeath
March 17, 2007, 11:47 PM
it stinks that you can't do the usual good ol GK 10, but I still like reading your opinion...
pretty solid points in the comments this time...
I was also dumbfounded at how pathetic oro was made to look against sasuke, and if that dimension belongs to oro, then what body/mind was it in? sasuke's? oro's? very confusing, also since when does the sharingan allow you record things and then play them back in people's minds?
maybe sasuke just threw some genjutsu into kabuto's mind instead of a play by play, replay...
as for suigetsu, I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought haku when I saw him, it would be interesting if oro cloned haku or his abilities like with the first and yamato...

SilveryShadows
March 18, 2007, 01:33 AM
I was typing a reply, then FF just shut down, and it's gone now. :mad: Session Manger was suppose to save form texts. >>
So, I'll re-reply later today when it's not past midnight, or tomorrow.
RL should come first. Should. Yes. um..

Gold Knight
March 18, 2007, 02:46 AM
:hug @ SilveryShadows

That's happened to me before, it's so darn frustrating! xD

mageofdeath, yeh, I think the only REAL complaint I have about this whole arc is the sudden "demise" of Orochimaru, but it seems there's likely to still be a chance where Oro might regain control again sometimes. After reading 346 initially, I thought Kabuto might be able to "save" Orochimaru someday from the dimension that Sasuke now apparently controls, by entering it himself and then letting Orochimaru "borrow" his body. At least, there might be a chance where Sasuke would trap somebody in his "dimension" again (especially if he ever gains the MS, which I'm almost dead certain he will someday) that Orochimaru might be able to take advantage of...

I think that the dimension became Sasuke's after Orochimaru lost. Or rather Orochimaru was transferred to Sasuke's own dimension - since his "willpower" ate Oro's dimension. It's a pretty interesting dynamic.

And good point about genjutsu, you're rpboably right.

miyi
March 18, 2007, 05:07 AM
I'm one of the lurkers here, and I've read your reviews for a while now, probably since chapter 325 or something. I've always enjoyed them, and it's too bad that your reviews from now on will have to be less in length, but it's all good. In fact, I've been doing reviews of my own in one forum, due to your influence, I might submit some here, when I find the time.

Great comments, as always. One thing I noticed though, is when Tsunade was explaining the medical adverse effects of the rasen shuriken, is when Kakashi notes, "it's poison and best described as, not because of it's speed, but because of how it is concentrated".

Then I remembered the time when, Kakuzu got owned by Naruto with the FRS, and Kakashi said something like, "that jutsu is so fast my Sharingan can't keep up with it". It turns out it's not because of its speed, but because of it's microscopic effectiveness. Therefore, is the sharingan, then, ineffective at the cellular level? I think so, and I know it's a minor and somewhat irrelevant issue, but still worth noting.

Btw, here's the link to my chapter review thread:
http://www.nbforums.net/forum/index.php?topic=2857.msg1832172#msg1832172

BlaZeR
March 18, 2007, 05:13 AM
You sir, are quite the journalist :).

juUnior
March 18, 2007, 05:24 AM
Nice review GK even if its shorter, but enough to enjoy reading ;p

I agree, now two covers in a row with Saske.. with first with Oro also, and the seocnd in my opinion was cool :D
Also, the flashback with Itachi owning Oro was superb hyhy ^^ Now all questions to that apsect Ita vs Oro are just answerd. Also, we do know how ritual can is working via some dimension's Oro ^^ I also enjoyed how Sasuke done that monster in that dismension. And tyical saying form the mouth of bad guy I think, that Oro that, Oro that, it's just like with Hidan.. and thus I think Hidan and Oro will have comeback (but on the other hand, I'm with that Hidan woundt have comebacks...).
heh and maybe Saske is doint another Sound 5 with him as a leader :D

btw. I dont know if I misunderstand, but the first panel body, which Oro was controling in fighting Sandaime and later on, was a woman body. But probably miseunderstood reading ;p

ibra87
March 18, 2007, 05:26 AM
It's good to see you post comments GK, it's infinit times better than not posting them at all.

And about the RasenShuriken, I wonder what will happen of it. Tsunade says that he won't be able to draw any more chakra, but that reminds me of the Neji-effect -> Naruto can just draw chakra from the kyuubi. Was the what he meant with "I know my body more than anyone else"?

And it's good to know Sasuke isn't an idiot who plans to face Itachi and Akatsuki alone. Guess he wasn't that much of an emo+idiot after all. :) Wonder who that guy is. Surely someone who holds a grudge agasint Oro. But that's an of course. Maybe he knows somethign about the ring? Imagine Sasuke using the ring to send an image to Akatsuki! Heh, never gonna happen.

arslan
March 18, 2007, 08:57 AM
great points made, gk, about both chapters though its a shame that you can't write your detailed comments. about oro's dimension i think its is ore of a genjutsu that was started due to oro's snakes being cut and the 'poison' the snakes produced. the sharingan is pretty good with genjutsu and that's probably why sasuke was able to reverse oro's jutsu on oro. also sasuke showing kabuto what transpired was also an illusionary technique. about oro being trapped in sasuke's mind, i have a bad feeling about it. i would rather sasuke just kills orochimaru. otherwise a good job GK. i look forward to reading your articles in the future.

jaimacando
March 18, 2007, 11:12 AM
GK,
Thanks for your terrific insight into the chapters. Unfortunately, I only got to read 4 reviews before you had to switch to the low-key version. Your reviews helped to balance out the uninformed comments I found on other websites.

Didn't Itachi show Sasuke the death of their parents over and over using the Sharingan?

Not sure if Kishimoto is pandering to his audience, but I found the writing to be both surprising and climactic. I can't wait for the next chapter!!!

baboysai
March 18, 2007, 12:20 PM
I happen to like this review even if its shorter. It's more concise, i guess, that's why.

And for that, good job! Brevity is not an easy thing to achieve when writing out opinions sometimes.

-------------------------------
so true on the orochimaru and sasuke cover thing... I really thought: Gay. hehe.

MadDog
March 18, 2007, 04:07 PM
Your weekly insight/summary is definetly appreciated.

With Sasuke haven "taken over", it'll be interesting to see how Orochimaru effects his subconscious and attitude towards Konoha.

Also, am I the only one who thinks that Sasuke forming a ninja crew is a big departure for his character? The kid has always been a loner. I can see him freeing Oro's slaves/experiments, but not setting himself up as their leader.

I think that Sasuke will come to regret not killing Kabuto when he had the chance (obviously for plot reasons). My guess is that Kabuto winds up working with Akatsuki, if not a full member. Why? For one, he has a boat load of intelligence on Naruto, Konoha, Sasuke and others. Not to mention his ninja skills, which could be viewed as valuable to an evil organization like Akatsuki. Plus, you can't forget the ring on Oro's rotting hand.

godofthesunn
March 18, 2007, 04:50 PM
good job, bloke

TayuyatheNorthGate
March 18, 2007, 05:00 PM
Very insightful look into the last chapters, I commend you.

Shorter does not always mean worse. Sometimes a concise answer is better than a sprawling one. Though, I will admit openly I will miss your dissections of the chapters. They were always interesting to read.

I...do not agree at all with what happened in the chapters myself, and thought they were horrible. The sudden downfall of Orochimaru is something thick, and bitter upon the tongue, very hard to swallow, maybe impossible to ever be. I think Kishimoto threw him away much too quickly--he burned away like an ember in the wind of night--quietly, glowing faintly, until he finally vanished into nothingness. Not fitting at all. This was a mistake. Something wrong.

I am hoping he will break out of whatever this is that Sasuke has done to him. I refuse to believe Sasuke has a deity's prowess. I will not believe it.

I, myself, am having a very hard time with it, as you can well see.

cno
March 18, 2007, 05:08 PM
All I can say after these past 2 manga's is WOW.

Seriously, how much more fast paced is this second part to the first? It also leads me to think that the series may be approaching it's end soon. Not that soon of course, but a few weeks ago, I thought this series was for sure going to see atleast 1 more time skip, now at the rate the series is moving, I can also see Naruto ending in part 2 (but I sure hope not).

As far as Oro's death is concerned, I think it's obvious that he'll be back, he's been the 1 constant villian through-out the series, and Sasuke even admit's to the fact that it's more like he's taken over his body, instead of actually killing him.

This does bring up more intresting idea's as well. Does Sasuke, now inherit Oro's knowledge? Or is he just being held captive inside of Sasuke's mind. Regardless, we now see how powerful Sasuke has really gotten. Even if Oro was in his weakened state.

As far as how Oro actually got Sasuke into his dimension, it's in 345, his paralyzing venom taints the air, and imo what happens is, Oro jumps into Sasuke's body due to the fact that the venom has slowed down his reaction time/abilities, and in the bottom half of page 5 in chapter 345 you see Oro lunging at Sasuke.

I also think we need not worry about the fact that Tsunade banned the Rasenshuriken. I'm 100% positive the jutsu that even Yondaime couldn't complete would be completly disgarded. Either one of two things can happen here, first Naruto can learn how to throw the Rasenshuriken, which is what the name suggests will happen or two, Sakura could surpass her teacher, and develop a medical Jutsu that could repair chakra cells at the cellular level.

What about the question of Sasuke and Mizugetsu/Suigetsu (spelling could be off on my part)? Clearly this person was released with the intention of taking on Kisami, or atleast keeping him busy while Sasuke and Itachi fight. Because as we clearly have seen unlike most of the other 2 man teams in Akatsuki, these 2 actually like eachother and have eachother's backs. The question is, is he going to get a few more people on his side to help take down the rest of Akatsuki. However I think it's just going to be the two of them, considering Akatsuki work in 2 man teams as it is, and I really don't see Sasuke jumping in to fight the whole group dolo.

Also, what of Kabuto now? His master is trapped inside of Sasuke's body, so is Kabuto going to stick around Sasuke, in hopes of possibly releasing him later on? Or is he going to serve Sasuke seeing how he is superior to Oro. So far Kabuto has proven loyal to Oro, and we have no reason to think otherwise at this point, so only time will tell.

Regardless excellent chapter, can't wait for next week.

sahugani
March 18, 2007, 05:15 PM
sorry to see that GK's famous reviews are being downsized. they were an inspiration

as for the chapters, i also thought Orochimaru's demise was too sudden. While the whole Akatsuki thing has been an issue for Naruto, the biggest thing for him has been getting Sasuke back from Oro, so this sudden ending to that problem i found a bit strange. However, i do think that Orochimaru's ring will play some vital part for Sasuke and i cant wait to see what the deal is with his new friend

dfcarolinaguy
March 19, 2007, 08:26 PM
I totally agree with you GK, but the rating on chapter 345 should have been lower like a 4 lol and I can't believe orochi got demolished by ITACHI hehe.

PaperYomiko
March 19, 2007, 09:31 PM
Sorry to hear your comments will be shorter ~ I've always enjoyed reading them! But I'm sure they'll still be just as interesting, I certainly won't stop reading :amuse

I thought of Kimimaro too...but that would be pretty lame and slightly impossible. (Although I've learned that it's rare someone's ever really dead in manga...or I guess shonen, anyway) I'm definitely excited for the new character ~ is it Suigetsu or Mizugetsu? The scan I read said Mizugetsu, but I suppose it's basically the same thing.

Anyway, good luck with life!

karma28
March 19, 2007, 10:05 PM
suigetsu = water moon

although i doubt it with kishi, who seems to like introducing new characters, suigetsu could be the transcendental form of kimimaro. if you look up buddhist texts about the nature of the "water moon" and its symbolic and religious meanings it starts to a make a little sense. kimimaro moved his body through his conscience alone towards the last stages of his disease and basically became the quintessence of the "water moon" philosophy (the nature of human perception of reality). so maybe kishi was trying to allude to a "new" or ressurected form of kimimaro (for all we know kimi didn't die in front of us).

'tis all just fan speculation. applause for a job well done, gk

Saifi
March 20, 2007, 12:05 PM
^ i donno isnt mizu the term for water ? so shouldnt the right translation be mizugetsu ! ?

Also GK dont worry about shorter reviews , RL always has to stick its nose in where it doesnt belong (kinda like my boss expecting me to actually work and take a break to goof off not vice versa):sbunny

only one thing disappointed me and that was sauske yet again using CS and kicking oros ass with his sharingan + CS ! i mean i am disappointed that oro couldnt do anything about CS which HE gave sauske , but then again i guess if a dimention he created was stolen by sauske (thief!) then the CS is a smaller issue !

cherryenchanted
March 20, 2007, 12:43 PM
Thanks for the insight!!!is just kinda disappointing if Orochimaru will just end up his story like that, I think Oro is not yet dead..his just disappear somewhere in the dimension...

Just a question: What is really the name of the person that comes out in the water?Since there are scanlations that says "Mizugetsu" others is "Suigetsu"...if its Suigetsu, I find a research on that name & it was one of the lake of Japan named Lake Suigetsu...so it does really relate to water..

SilveryShadows
March 21, 2007, 09:22 PM
:hug GK

Must be more frustrating for posting your long reviews(referring to closed browser erases reviews).
I don't like to retype the same thing, and I might forget things I had typed before this time around. ><

(Would had replied earlier, but too tired, much school work, etc. Still having those 'problems', but..)

345
4. Orochimaru's soul entered Sasuke's mind/body?

7. Probably not a good idea to free prisoners, even if Orochimaru could. They could turn against him, flee, or something(since not all of them were willing). More useful to have them inside his body/dimension.
If he is able to free them, he would need bodies to 'host' the spirits/souls. Possibly something similar to that jutsu that 'revived' dead people.

9. It's as if Sasuke has an 'ultimate defence' or something. Or just really skilled.

10. I had thought it might not be revealed until later too, but I guess this way the story can move on and focus on Sasuke. (If the identity of who's in control of Sasuke's body wasn't revealed, then that'd be difficult to focus on Sasuke without revealing too much of who it really is.) But better this way. It settles arguments and confirms theories.

verdict. I don't remember how that part looked like/what happened, but the snake could be the big white snake? (The white snake has to leave the old body, and then enter the new body?)

What's with villains and their 'own world inside their minds'? (Well, not exactly in their mind, I suppose.)

346
2,3. More like a 'replay' of what happened? (In Sasuke's mind? Or he entered Kabuto's mind to show it??)

6. I hope for a possibility of Orochimaru taking control on day. Or at least try to/fight back.
It'd be more interesting, and at least does some justice to his quick 'disappearing off the face of the Ninja world'. And it'd be just no good if he doesn't return somehow, because he isn't dead.
But now the manga needs to focus on Sasuke, after the lack of focus on him for so long.

10. After reading the spoilers, you're not too far off. xD Well, connected to Zabuza, so..


Now Sasuke has a 'beast' inside him too! (And if Sakura's inner mind counts... Though I don't recall having seen that since part 2 started. hm..)

Will future reviews be in the first post? Or a new post?

(Overused ''s.)

Edit: I forgot to mention that I like reading your reviews no matter if it's long or short. :) I don't mind the wait.
I look forward to read your comments about the new chapter. xD

sabyr
March 22, 2007, 08:21 PM
wow, reading 347 i see you were right about not just one, but TWO things! your getting better at predicting what's next!

Iwanin
March 23, 2007, 03:26 AM
Well, chapter 347 is out now, so this feels a little late, but there are a couple of things I wanted to say and I probably won't be back here until looong after GK posts his review for chapter 347 so....

A couple of thoughts of mine:

1. Mangekyou sharingan? Maybe I missed it, but I couldn't find any remark to this effect on this thread. I would have thought it'd be the first question to come to mind. What Sasuke used to show Kabuto what happened was definitely not regular Sharingan - superficially, at least. Sure, it didn't look like Itachi's Mangekyou, but neither did Kakashi's. Some speculated that this could be owing to Kakashi's being "incomplete", and the fact that he can't pinpoint the exact spot he wants to "transfer"definitely supports this theory, but might it not simply be that all Mangekyou look different? Another point for Kishi to clear up.

2. The way I understood what happened is that, instead of Orochi possessing Sasuke, Sasuke possesed *him* - I'm tempted to say that, in effect, he *copied* the possession ritual as it was taking place. This means that all of Orochimaru's jutsu and memories are now Sasuke's. Whether we'll see him reemerge through Sasuke's body remains to be seen, but I wouldn't count on it.... *sniff, sniff*...

3. It might have been Lost in Translation, but Orochimaru's final words were notable in that he actually sounded like a man instead of a middle aged woman. "I am Orochimaru the Immortal! The one who will bring all of this world's mysteries to light!" The first line ends in "zo" (a predominantly masculine particle - although *tough* women like Tsunade have been known to use it) and the second in "na" - which, if not exclusively masculine, sounds a lot less gay than "ne." It was the most shocking part of the chapter to me. Maybe being fused with Sasuke was starting to show it's effects already, :p

4. When he said "you're first" to Suigetsu, I immediately thought: "let's see... we have "Water Guy", so we now need "Rock Guy" and "Wind Guy"..." And when I read this chapter, I realized how silly I was being: one of these guys has to be a girl. Silly me. Four-man cell with one girl: a mirror of Team Kakashi. And maybe the girl will use Genjutsu? And it'll be up to Sakura to whip her ass.

5. It's funny, but I have mixed feelings about this plot development. Sasuke's forming a team and he'll inevitably cross swords with Naruto. That much is certain. But I'm not sure he's "bad guy" material. Orochimaru makes for a far more delicious villain than Sasuke. And if Sasuke ends up Killing Itachi, what badass villain is there left? Sasuke's more like a misguided moron than an evil mastermind. He's not decent enough to be a good guy, but not bad enough to be a bad guy. At any rate, my prediction's that Sasuke will head for Konoha ... again, looking for the power to defeat Itachi. The Uchiha's secret shrine is there. At that point we find out what relationship the Uchiha clan has with the Kyuubi and such.

Oh, who knows. As long as the manga's not too predictable, I think I can live with it. But it's almost like Kishi's run out of Akatsuki and is now looking to offer us another "set" of battles with "Sasuke's Sassy Four." Dammit, man, would you start answering questions and making sense of your manga already! -_-

Battles are useless without plot!

theshizzle
March 23, 2007, 05:58 AM
good job

Gold Knight
March 25, 2007, 07:38 AM
Sorry guys, I wasn't able to even access MH all week, so I just now saw everybody's comments! xD

I'm glad that some of you guys don't seem to mind the downgraded version of my reviews. =) I'll try to reply with more of my thoughts to everybody's posts later on but right now let me just get my thoughts on 347 out ^^

Chapter 347: Dropping by on the Way!!

1. Juugo from the North Base? Karin from the South Base? Aha, so Sasuke IS trying to form a group... for what purpose? Probably just to make the odds against the Akatsuki a little better?

In response to Iwanin's post, I certainly hope it's a little more interesting than just having a Rock nin, Wind nin, etc. to go with Suigetsu being a Water nin. I already got my fill of "elemental buddies" from watching the Ghost Rider movie! xD

2. So, how does Suigetsu look like? Got our answer to that one here. Long hair, intense eyes, and the teeth of a piranha.

I guess you could call my first impression pretty much neutral on his design, it wasn't until later in the story I started to appreciate it a little better.

3. Suigetsu's dislike of Juugo and Karin seems to show that he wasn't expecting Sasuke to choose these two in particular. Could it be that there are more others around that Sasuke COULD have picked to go with him? I suppose Orochimaru probably had a lot of prisoners...

You know, what is the nature of Suigetsu's dislike of the others, though? Is it because Suigetsu's disgusted by their violent natures? This is what I first thought when he seemed said here "what does that say about you Sasuke that you picked them..."

But I think the opposite is probably true - Suigetsu might not like them because he considers them "weak and emotional" possibly. Still, I believe Sasuke doesn't care too much about their personalities as long as they're all *powerful* enough to be able to face down the Akatsuki. Guess we'll see.

4. Sasuke's bossy attitude amused me as much as it seemed to irrirate Suigetsu. That might be something that might get Sasuke in trouble later on.

Suigetsu is another "God of Flash," eh? Y'know, I think if a guy in the nude was right behind me, I mean, RIGHT there, I think my heart would probably have skipped a beat... whether I killed Orochimaru or not. Sasuke must have had ice in his veins...

5. Oh wow, Zabuza is actually mentioned in this chapter as Suigetsu's "senior". Whaddaya know? Maybe my theory of Suigetsu being the love child of Zabuza and Haku wasn't that far off after all! Ha!

Makes me think Suigetsu could possibly be from the Momochi clan. Of course, we don't know just how many clans in the Water Country exhibit such distinguishing features as razor-sharp teeth. There could be more clans and they could all be half-fish!

Whatever the case, here's a little quick drawing I did to show the differences between Suigetsu and Zabuza, heh.

http://img474.imageshack.us/img474/268/suigetsuzabuzafa5.th.png (http://img474.imageshack.us/my.php?image=suigetsuzabuzafa5.png)

Originally posted on my DeviantArt. (http://www.deviantart.com/deviation/51538099/) =)

6. Hah, so Konohamaru's finally learned Kage Bunshin? And what does he use it for? What else?

You guys probably remember that Naruto was able to beat Konohamaru's instructor, Ebisu, by using Mass Kage Bunshin and then turning them all into naked girls hugging the stuffings out of him.

So I'm really not surprised at all that Konohamaru was inspired enough to do a similar trick. "Double Knockout Girls!"

7. But who the hell inspired Konohamaru to do "Double Knockout Guys!???"

I blame the yaoi fangirls. One of them must have gotten into the series and bribed him into doing it!! (LoL @ Sakura's reaction - she's been exposed as a pervert after all!)

(Seriously, this chapter almost seemed like Kishimoto took a break and just let a fan write the plot instead of him!)

Ah well, hope you fangirls enjoyed the eye candy!

8. The Great Naruto Bridge! Actually didn't expect Kishimoto to EVER return to the Land of the Waves at all. It's a nice homage to the first part - the Zabuza arc was what got many of us really loving Naruto - and it's pretty amusing to have seen Sasuke's reaction to the name of the bridge. Just as I would've imagined, though, he just said "hmph."

Still, again, it feels as though a fan was writing the plot for this chapter.

9. THE RETURN OF ZABUZA'S BLADE!!! Awesome. And it's not rusty eh?

I loved Zabuza as a bad guy, and I don't believe Suigetsu will be as cool as him, but what the heck. It sure brings back the good memories.

Funny though to see Suigetsu struggle to just hold it - I wonder how good he'll actually be with it, though, considering he probably hasn't been able to train with a similar sword for years, trapped in that container as he was? Maybe he hadn't been a prisoner for so many years as Sasuke, though...

Seems like Suigetsu's definitely from Kirigakure, though, if he's been training to try to become one of the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist.

10. So who's this at the end of the chapter? Karin? Definitely a female, though...

Looks like we're going to have a Team Sasuke - so I definitely predict a confrontation between Team 7 and Team Sasuke at some point.

FINAL VERDICT: This was a surprising chapter. As I said, it almost seemed like a fan wrote the plot for the chapter. It was also disorienting how Sasuke and Suigetsu just seemed to immediately move from Orochimaru's hideout to the Water Country, without much pretense. The Konohamaru antic also seemed to be out of place - not saying that Kishimoto shouldn't have included something like that, but he probably should just have saved that for another occasion. This chapter would have been better if it just concentrated on Sasuke and Suigetsu all the way through (and maybe already introduced one of the other two eventual companions). I AM curious to see where all this leads to...

RATING: 4 of 5

fatboy812000
March 25, 2007, 08:08 AM
nice reviews as usual.team sasuke huh, well it is likely to end up as elemental buddies probably cos it gives him the option of setting up new abilities based on ones weve seen already and all the rogue groups seem to follow that formula but i like to hope we'll see some hidden rain or hidden cloud nin, those villages seem to feature so little in the naruto world. the chapter as a whole was more funny for me esp the whole knock out thing who said naruto isnt a good role model/teacher sakuras reaction was funny as well.
anyhow this is one of the things kishimotos shines at though introducing new characters, so i cant wait to c wat happens nxt.

arslan
March 25, 2007, 09:57 AM
nice review GK and i agree with the prediction about one on one confrontation between team 7 and sasuke's tean. sakura will be fighting the girl and sai may fight suogetsu coz there abilities seem to be liquid based not that we know too much about suigetsu or sai for that matter. so good job GK, can't wait for the next chapter though.

SilveryShadows
March 25, 2007, 01:47 PM
Great review!

When facing Akatsuki, it'll be against at least two (more if at their base), while Sasuke may feel he can defeat Itachi, he may not be able to defeat Itachi while Kisame is there too. The rest of the group could be there to fight other Akatsuki members.
Sasuke's group members must be strong, because he wouldn't choose weak people whom would be of no use.

Is Suigetsu Sai's brother? They look so much alike.. Despite that Sai's brother could be dead, and probably a Leaf Nin, I think it is still a possibility. (And a more plausible theory than Tobi=Obito.)


I may be wrong, but from my understanding, knowing about Zabuza's sword, the Seven Swordsmen, and training to use the sword doesn't make Suigetsu a Mist Nin. (Though he has those teeth like Kisame and Zabuza, so he probably is a Mist Nin.)
And it doesn't make Zabuza Suigetsu's 'teacher' or something. Or Suigetsu trained under Zabuza, in other words. I don't really understand Japanese, but 'Sempai' doesn't mean that Zabuza was Suigetsu's teach, now, does it? (It's just showing respect, right? Correct me if I'm wrong.)

Suigetsu could be a Mist Nin(or born in Mist), but he could also had actually became a Konoha Nin later on in life or something.

Maybe all Mist Nins have horrible shark-like teeth? Or maybe it's some kind of clan or bloodlimit(?) that gives them that trait?

Only because I had drawn Sir Leader and Suigetsu, but they have the same eye shape. Probably means nothing.

Just a fun chapter to be laughed at like any other non-serious chapter.
But I felt it was a bit overboard because aren't many/most readers still young? It'd be kinda awkward if they read the chapter when there's people around. D: (Not that it happened to me, but with the large number of readers out there...)
Why does it seem like the chapters lately had input from fangirls? (Sasuke showing emotions, smiling - almost, fanservices.. Sasuke.)

PaperYomiko
March 25, 2007, 05:13 PM
As always, nice review :amuse

I actually liked that Kishimoto put in the part with Konohamaru. Partly because it was funny, and I think it's important to balance drama with comedy, but besides that, it shows that he's developing Konohamaru as more than just a comedic, little-brother type of character, because of his already being able to do kage bunshin. I was surprised, since the only characters that we know of who can do it are all very advanced (Kakashi, etc) and Konohamaru certainly doesn't have the large amount of chakra that Naruto does. The fact that he can do it already means he must be smart enough to not only learn the technique, but have pretty darn good chakra control so he doesn't kill himself. I think that the real point of that scene was not so much to gratify all the fangirls out there, but to show that Konohamaru is going to become an important character in terms of his fighting ability, and that, like Naruto, his dream to become hokage is not all talk.

dfcarolinaguy
March 25, 2007, 05:48 PM
great review GK.

miyi
March 26, 2007, 01:24 AM
As I've said before, I'm one of the lurkers that finally exposed himself.

Gold Knight, great review as always, the Naruto chapter is only half complete without your reviews.

We agree on a lot of things for this chapter, and if I were to rate this, it would've been a 4.5/5, because it's not as exciting as the past several chapters, and as you've mentioned, it seems like a fangirl submitted this story.

I thought that the purpose behind the Konohomaru comedy scene can be of two things:

[1] the emphasis in the "new generation" of kids improving and growing up. Konohomaru learning a high level jutsu as a Kage Bunshin is an obvious sign of growth.

[2] the sexy jutsu being a "diversion" tactic, is probably a hint that Sasuke is assembling his small army as a "diversion".

Whether Sasuke is going to meet with the Akatsuki or back to Konoha (or whichever comes first), I'm sure the convenience of having the new recruits around will help lessen the attention he will draw on himself, hence as a "diversion".

I agree, it almost seems so coincidental that this small army is a 4-man-team (mirror counterpart to Naruto's 4-man-team). I bet Sasuke and Naruto will meet again soon, and seeing him reminisce under the "Naruto Great Bridge" not only suggest he still cares about Naruto and Konoha, but also the chance of them meeting again is getting near.

I don't think Sasuke is ready to go up against Itachi. He still needs some power-gathering to do. As Iwanin mentioned several posts back (great post btw, I agree with you completely), Sasuke might be headed for Konoha to possibly visit the Uchiha temple. Perhaps he might find some answers here, discover some secret about the Uchiha clan and their abilities, or whatever further inspiration that he may find.

@drawing - that's amazing. You're so multitalented, please keep up the good work. As a skilled writer and artist, I bet you'd make a good mangaka. Again thanks for the review.

Gold Knight
March 26, 2007, 02:57 PM
Hey y'all again!

Okay, I'm afraid I'm going to have to skip on replying to the pre-347 posts (too much to do right now - and my arms are *sore* after digging post holes all day) but thanks all for posting! And here goes for the 347 comments.

@ fatboy812000 - I agree with you that I'd like to see a little more variety of characters from elsewhere rather than just Suna, Konoha, and Kiri. More Hidden Cloud would definitely be appreciated by me. But also I'd like to see some from Iwa too. I suppose that would make them elemental buddies though, wouldn't it? Wind and earth definitely if it turns out that way. So I guess it'd be fine. :-)

@ arslan_tariqch - Sai vs Suigetsu because of their liquid abilities eh? Ink vs. water. Could definitely happen!

@ Silvery_Shadows - Yeah, I was sort of skeptical on Sasuke picking up his own "Kisame" but whatever, I suppose it all works towards his plan to catch up to his elder brother and defeat him.

It's good that Sasuke hasn't completely lost his head and thought about taking on the entire Akatsuki organization all by himself. But the interesting part to me is that he didn't want to fight the Akatsuki with Naruto and Sakura. He chose other companions. Is it because he wants to fight with people that he doesn't give a damn about, though? Because he knows very well that they COULD die against the Akatsuki?

Suigetsu as Sai's brother? I'd like to hear more about Sai's brother, but I doubt Suigetsu isn't from Kirigakure... his teeth and then his mentioning Zabuza as "sempai" and to top all that off his idolization of the Seven Swordsmen pretty much confirmed that for me, I think.

Though I'll agree that it's debatable that he's actually ever been to Kirigakure, because he could have just easily been a child found on the battlefield and adopted by a clan from a whole different country (like Kabuto). But I do think he's from a Kirigakure clan...

Though I was thinking, if shark teeth were all that common in Kirigakure, why did Zabuza decide to cover his mouth with wrappings? Since he obviously didn't care about being recognized as a missing nin from Kirigakure (or else he'd have thrown his forehead protector away to ensure he stays hidden) I was thinking he did it to hide his more inhuman features. I always thought his teeth had something to do with him being called a "Demon," but now I'm thinking he was just self-conscious? :s

You couldn't have said it better about the Konohamaru scene - I do think this chapter was a little overboard. That's the reason I think that part could have been better by having been in another chapter, when there's not so much, well, fangirl service elsewhere! :-)

@ PaperYomiko - You say that the Konohamaru scene balanced out the drama in the chapter - well for me there wasn't THAT much drama in this chapter. Sure, Suigetsu did threaten Sasuke's life, but I never got the sense that Sasuke was ever in danger (otherwise why bother having him beat Orochimaru?) It was just us getting to know Suigetsu, and he was naked the whole time - it was kinda... bizarre!

But I'll agree that I do think Kishimoto is building up Konohamaru to be a major part later in the series (at least I hope he doesn't plan on killing Konohamaru like he has the rest of the Sarutobis we've known!) So it's good to see a little of him every now and then and see how he's progressed =)

@ dfcarolinaguy - thanks! ^^

@ Miyi - you are SO right to be looking for hints right now. Very smart of you. If the Immortals arc taught us anything, it's definitely that Kishimoto seems to like to throw hints at us of what the next arc might be like!

So yeah, Konohamaru's scene being a hint of Sasuke using his companions as mere "diversions" as relating to his future opponents - VERY likely! Very, very smart observation of you ^^

Uchiha temple - well, that depends - I would have thought Sasuke would have gotten everything out of it the first time he was there though. But maybe not. o.o

Thanks for commenting! Keep it up guys, I learn something new every time I read your posts xD

SilveryShadows
March 26, 2007, 03:45 PM
I don't think and didn't mean that those teeth is a common thing.
Reread through the early chapters, this (http://groups.msn.com/NarutoMangaReturns/volume3.msnw?action=ShowPhoto&PhotoID=669) doesn't quite support that, because it shows people with shark-like teeth. I was looking for the flashback of kid!Zabuza, but the flashback doesn't really show the other kids' teeth. (Though I wonder if what Kakashi was saying implied that the teeth was a bloodline trait? )
(Maybe the teeth an requirement to become a Seven Swordsmen? lol. Or someone had called Zabuza ugly before because of his teeth? xD)


Is it because he wants to fight with people that he doesn't give a damn about, though?
Ah, good point. I only supposed that Sasuke had witnessed those people's strength, and thought they were strong enough to go with him; however, he doesn't acknowledge Naruto and Sakura's strength.

Gold Knight
March 27, 2007, 07:42 AM
That link didn't work for me =(

xD Good grief, I'm now expecting some kind of silly fanart of Zabuza crying at his village-people calling him ugly - wouldn't it be funny if Kisame was thought to be "beautiful" compared to Zabuza, though...

Reminds me of this guy at NF who would always pimp Kisame as being the sexiest son of the gun in the Akatsuki >.>

I think Sasuke does acknowledge Naruto's strength/potential, I just think he believes that Naruto hasn't been applying himself (he noticed almost immediately - probably due to catching him off guard with his own speed - that Naruto hadn't exactly been working towards his goal of being Hokage lately).

As for Sakura, yeah, she didn't show him much the last time... ><

bilheteira
March 27, 2007, 11:22 AM
Great review!

Is Suigetsu Sai's brother? They look so much alike..

you know?

this maybe stupid to say but when I saw Suigetsu for the first time he looked like Sakura in a bad hair day (of course without the shark teeth)

Navid.
March 27, 2007, 04:25 PM
Wow, I haven't been around here in a long time now, thanks to Uni being on full speed and churning out assignments at a record pace, not to worry though I have been able to keep up and have been getting the chapters/episodes (for both Naruto/Bleach and One Piece).

Sometimes I've even found the time (between research and writing essay after essay) to have a quick read through these very pages as well as the discussion and spoiler pages of each of the previously metioned manga's...

Anyway, I'm sure you've heard enough of people telling you how sad they are of how you will not be able to continue your "more in depth" comments... So I won't say I'm sad to see you shortning the comments as I can perfectly understand why you had to do so.

I also have to say I'm really impressed with how you are still able to keep replying to all/most of the messages posted here, so two thumbs up... great job. (This goes for everyone who does a "comment" for whichever manga within mangahelpers... you have my respect :) )

Anyway onto the chapter (347):

The nudity factor - I will probably have to disagree with you (hopefully for the first and last time) on the subject of Suigetsu being naked during his little conversation with Sasuke, I felt it gave a almost authentic/realistic feel to the scene. (Much unlike when you see a holywood movie where the actors dont look all perfect looking at all times, even after having killed off a small military force, been through five explosions, shot on two occasions, and not one had to go to the bathroom). I would have liked it less if he came out of that canister fully clothed and ready looking...

Many of the responses I've read reminded me off the kind of comments I remember reading when Raiden (MGS2) was shown during his capture/escape scene. However I felt there where no "gay" undertones about the scene between Sauske and Suigetsu and Kishi pulled it of very well. The whole issue showed that it was business first between these two and instead of Suigetsu going of and getting dressed, he felt his first priority was to declared himself on par with Sasuke, now I'll go onto how well that went...

Suigetsu and Sasuke act 1 - Well the confrontation between Suigetsu and Sasuke was mainly used by Kishi to show us not only Suigetsu's skill but also drop a few hints about his abilities:

First of his skills seem to borderline on a bloodline power, did he run past Sasuke, or did he move through the water (similar to how Haku used to move through his mirrors).
But one thing we can confirm is that whatever it was he did, he is fast, but is he fast enough? (I'll will expand on why I ask this next)

Look at Sasuke's eyes before the frame showing Suigetsu standing behind Sasuke, his already looking at where Suigetsu. Does this mean he was able to folllow his movement, in the same way he could see Haku way back when... except he dosen't have his sharingan activated.

And this is where I will ask what I feel is a improtant question after having seen/and read through the confrontation between Sasuke and Suigetsu, (no need to answer this, just think it over):

Did the confrontation make you feel more impressed with Suigetsu or Sasuke?

For me it was Sasuke who stood out during that scene, the way his expression didnt change and he left Suigetsu do all the talking, and in the end back off... well to make a long story short, to me it showed that even with Suigestu saying otherwise Sauske is in fact the boss out of the two.

Back to Konoha - Now onto the little side tracking that is Konohamaru and Co, I have to say even though this got a smile out of me, it felt out of place and like Kishi was filling up space/slowing progression down, which in my opinion shouldn't be necessary when you think how few pages he has every week to write/draw and move the story forward with.

Then you look at people like Oda who gives his readers arguably twice the amount of information/story every week... this is probably the only aspect of Kishi as a mangaka which I feel he should improve in.

Overall I really didn't in the long term feel the was any significant point to the scene, I would much rather have a scene of Naruto urging to go tack down Sasuke again...

Me getting side-tracked - While were on the subject, isn't Naruo/Team Kakashi a bit too calm considering how little time Sasuke has left (actually it should have already happened) before Sasuke is taken by Orochimaru. It's like they already know he's ok...

The fact that the whole battle between Sauske and Orchimaru took place and was solved whitout Naruto or Team 7 present felt like all of Naruto's training in fact didn't really matter for the cause it was though up for in the first place, don't get me wrong it took out Kakuzu and will probably in the future help Sasuke...

But the whole point of using Kage-Bunshin was to get Naruto improved in as short time as possible, to get back Sasuke, in the end Sasuke ended up saving himself, so was it a total failure on that part?

Sometimes the manga makes me ask myslef, why won't Team 7 just leave Sauske to his path... All credit to Kishi for making it me ask this question, as it shows that there is in fact no black and white, right and wrong path, it all mixes, overlaps, and merges into a dark shade of grey.

These are some questions I have been asking myself recently, try answering them as honestly as you posibly can for yoursleves:

1. Was Sasuke right to leave Konoha and his freinds, to prusue his goal of getting his revenge?
2. Did he leave Konoha and his friends to protect them and distance himself and his cause from them or was it simply becasue he felt they where useless?
3. Incredibly enough Shika did take the same path as Sasuke for a while, but instead of going the whole path alone, he brough his freinds with him... but fought Hidan on his own seperated from his freinds (to protect them?), was that the correct path?

I will leave it there, but I expect Naruto and Team 7 to hear of Sauske's actions very soon, it will be interesting to see what action Naruto takes afterwards.

Suigetsu and Sasuke act 2 - Finally we see Suigetsu and Sasuke back at pretty much where the series really started off, the Great Naruto Bridge. Needless to say Sasuke's reaction was very Sauske like...

What was interesting for me is how Suigetsu seems to carry around water adn it seems like he needs a drink from time to time... you would think a ninja from the mist could just use a couple of water Ninjutsu when he needed water?

And it ends with Suigetsu getting non other that Zabuza's sword, (I personally always liked how Zabuza made use of it, so great news), and once again making a claim to his equality in skill/strenght to Sauske... hopefuly this time the claim will have me more convinced.

Overall I would say this chapter didnt have as much long term impact as the few previous chapters, and Kishi could in my opinion have made better use of some of the pages he had availabe... 4/5 for me.

miyi
March 27, 2007, 04:57 PM
Navid, that was great analysis! I will try to respond, but I'm currenty using a school internet, and only have less than 20 minute time limit, so forgive me because this will be rushed..

You made several outstanding points, four of which I have time to reply to:

[1] confrontation between Suigetsu and Sasuke is to show who's dominant between the two
[2] the fact Sasuke ended up saving himself from Oro made Naruto's training to rescue Sasuke, up to this point, seem meaningless
[3] Shikamaru's revenge against Hidan is similar in the way Sasuke has separated himself from Konoha to have his revenge against Itachi

re: [1] I guess you're right, the emphasis here is both guys are eager to assert each other's authority. Here we get a glimpse of Suigetsu's quickness in his fluidity with the water, but I too felt Sasuke stood his groung convincingly here. He didn't skip a heart beat. I thought right then, Suigetsu instantly realized he was no match for Sasuke, and out of respect won, he is willing to obey and be allied with Sasuke.

re: [2] Good point, but I also consider the possibility that Sasuke saved himself ahead of schedule. If it took a bit longer, I'm sure Naruto would have made it in time to at least get to Sasuke to attempt rescuing him. Oro is at his capacity, as Kabuto was saying to himself in the lab. So it makes sense that Sasuke acted at an unexpected moment, where he had good opportunity to win. I can't blame Naruto for that, Sasuke just acted quicker than expected.

re: [3] I think Sasuke separated himself from the rest of his friends at Konoha because he felt this is his fight alone, and he need not get his friends involved and harmed. In a way, he's acting selfishly thinking he can tackle his problems alone and not trusting his friends enough, but at the same time, he is also well-meaning, wanting no harm done to his friends.

I'll edit this post later on, sorry.

oh, and about the Sasuke not acknowledging Naruto enough, I think in fact he does. And I think he made it clear at one poiint: "Naruto, I want to fight you". It's because of Sasuke that NAruto has pushed himself to his limits. He has an overall big impact on NAruto, and I think Sasuke is aware of that and that's why he is sort of arrogant towards him, so he can push his friend forward.

SilveryShadows
March 27, 2007, 06:15 PM
Ah. Link doesn't work for me either. I didn't check after I linked it. So, here. Uploaded on imageshack (http://img266.imageshack.us/img266/8599/naruto2513ho2.jpg)
I don't know if the shadowed image (of what I assume people with bloodlines) actually prove anything or not..



you know?

this maybe stupid to say but when I saw Suigetsu for the first time he looked like Sakura in a bad hair day (of course without the shark teeth)
xD Not a stupid thing to say. I didn't think of that. The hair style does look like Sakura's. Let's just hope the colour isn't the same. xD

Iwanin
March 28, 2007, 02:55 AM
Suigetsu and Sasuke act 1 - Well the confrontation between Suigetsu and Sasuke was mainly used by Kishi to show us not only Suigetsu's skill but also drop a few hints about his abilities:

First of his skills seem to borderline on a bloodline power, did he run past Sasuke, or did he move through the water (similar to how Haku used to move through his mirrors).


I think that was the whole point. I don't know exactly how it was translated, but Suigetsu says "Under these circumstances, I have the advantage" - meaning that the situation they were in gave him an edge over Sasuke (or so he seemed convinced). Sasuke and Suigetsu were both standing over a puddle of water.

Seeing as how Suigetsu was invisible in the tank, and how he emerged from the water, it seems he can "fuse", with it.

One thing is that this may imply he's from an advanced bloodline... and these guys were supposedly hunted to the brink of extintion in The Village Hidden by Myst, so we might be in for an interesting flashback or two.

The girl, from the name, I'm guessing is "Karin". I'd bet 1,000 bucks she's got the hots for Sasuke, but I don't think anyone would bet against me.

One of the reasons I think Sasuke and his posse will head for Konoha in search of something is that otherwise he's got no reason to clash with Naruto, and the manga's called Naruto, not "the incredible genius Sasuke."

His ultimate objective - at least, his immediate ultimate objective - is to kill Itachi. Thus, he has no reason to take a detour unless the detour will somehow make him more powerful - providing him the means to do so.

It's been like two weeks since he last met Naruto, and at that point he was confident he could *not* beat Itachi. I doubt he feels he's now ready.

Then again, what do *I* know. :p

Oh, and I always knew Sakura was a pervert. Remember the scene in the Forest of Death when Naruto's about to take a leak in front of them? Sakura scolds him, but then we see Inner Sakura go "I wouldn't mind if it were Sasuke!"

One of the ideas behind Naruto and Sakura's relationship is that they're a lot more similar than Sakura would like to admit. Naruto's the one who "gets it" (remember their conversation near the very beginning of the series, when he was posing as Sasuke).

baboysai
March 28, 2007, 09:39 AM
The girl, from the name, I'm guessing is "Karin". I'd bet 1,000 bucks she's got the hots for Sasuke, but I don't think anyone would bet against me.

0.0 tempting... what made you think so? If it's the reaction "can't be..." or something, I think she said that because she sensed a familiar chakra, might think that it's Orochimaru since it was stated that Sasuke took him over. So the possibility of emmitting a similar chakra is there. And I think that's what she felt and so she reacted that way. Coz if what she sensed was Sasuke, why'd she react that way?

UNLESS-- you're right and she does have the hots for him. In any case, I'm not betting :p

I bet, Karin is hot. (unlike Suigetsu...). Yay more hot girls makes manga interesting. ^_^

Gold Knight
March 28, 2007, 10:46 AM
@ bilheteira

"I saw Suigetsu for the first time he looked like Sakura in a bad hair day (of course without the shark teeth)"

When I drew Suigetsu it felt a lot like when I'd draw post-Timejump Sakura, so nope that wasn't a dumb thing to say ;) It's definitely the spiky-hanging hair.

@ Navid.

First of all while I said it was a "bizarre scene" I didn't have a thing against Suigetsu being naked when he appeared, especially considering he seemed to be able to in "liquid form." It's commonplace to see "prisoners" usually dressed in nothing more than rags after all.

However any implied "gay undertones," whether real or not, could have easily been avoided with a little writing. Kishimoto definitely did that on purpose because as his Sai-Sasuke yaoi scene later on in the chapter proved, he's well aware of how Sasuke is perceived as yaoi fodder for the fangirls. Suigetsu and Sasuke may have gotten to business right away, but that was in part spurred on by Sasuke's condescending tone.

But I didn't say I had a problem with this scene at all. It was the addition of the Konohamaru scene later on that made the whole chapter look REALLY fangirlish.

Nice analysis, btw. =)

And you're right about Kishimoto making it more of a question mark as to whether Team 7 should have kept worrying about Sasuke or not. I think I've already commented on that in the past - I believe that Naruto DID already save Sasuke from being self-destructive with his chase after him at the end of Part 1. Even Sakura herself may have had a little to do with Sasuke's decision not to entirely do what Itachi wanted him to do - he cryptically said "thank you" to her right before he knocked her out as he left Konohagakure. So I think as "friends" that consider Sasuke somebody worth saving I think they've already accomplished their objective - they just don't know it yet. But because they acted immediately, they did their job already as friends.

Here's where I do think Naruto and Sakura both went wrong, though: they spent all these years worrying and obsessing about Sasuke. I think that in part did hinder both their progress as shinobi, and it's showing, especially in Naruto's case. That's very off the par as far as the usual shinobi creed for being "emotionally uninvolved."

Actually looking at it that way, I'm starting to think Sai was a great addition to the team - he, and also Yamato, balances them out pretty well by being less emotionally involved with what's going on around them. Maybe they will help Naruto and Sakura realize that they need to think more about what they can do for their VILLAGE instead of one dude who's too busy seeking revenge elsewhere to give a damn about any of them.

(That's all I can post right now, I'll come back later guys ^^;)

ornis
March 28, 2007, 02:59 PM
Here's where I do think Naruto and Sakura both went wrong, though: they spent all these years worrying and obsessing about Sasuke. I think that in part did hinder both their progress as shinobi, and it's showing, especially in Naruto's case. That's very off the par as far as the usual shinobi creed for being "emotionally uninvolved."

Actually looking at it that way, I'm starting to think Sai was a great addition to the team - he, and also Yamato, balances them out pretty well by being less emotionally involved with what's going on around them. Maybe they will help Naruto and Sakura realize that they need to think more about what they can do for their VILLAGE instead of one dude who's too busy seeking revenge elsewhere to give a damn about any of them.



I agree. Definitely. Konoha's goal (to protect family) won't do squat for them, unless Sakura and Naruto can learn from the "defection" that already led them astray. However, something hits me as an ironic possibility. The defection back then could have been Sasuke's first diversion. Hopefully, that will come to pass... then no one ever had to save Sasuke, because his actions and his drama were like a grand genjutsu... gosh, that would be brilliant....
-
You know, when Oro was bound by Sasuke's genjutsu, the ordeal showed how Sasuke can face the past and defy it in a physically intangible world... if I could make my point any clearer, Sasuke's defection parallels the "ritual realm" face-off. The past was Itachi's impact. The genjutsu was cast on Itachi from afar and very directly when they fought in that hotel. The possibilty is pretty unbelievable to me, but I see it plainly now... Itachi thinks he made Sasuke snap but only Sasuke knows what Sasuke is doing.
-
Besides, has Sasuke's hate really increased or is he stalling for time like when he faced Naruto in Oro's lair.... there wasn't a quick act, to get to the point... intentions only claimed say little, when actions working upon those goals waste enough time to be stopped.

Gold Knight
March 28, 2007, 03:45 PM
@ miyi

"oh, and about the Sasuke not acknowledging Naruto enough, I think in fact he does. And I think he made it clear at one poiint: "Naruto, I want to fight you". It's because of Sasuke that NAruto has pushed himself to his limits. He has an overall big impact on NAruto, and I think Sasuke is aware of that and that's why he is sort of arrogant towards him, so he can push his friend forward."

Maybe, and I do agree with you to the respect that Sasuke recognizes Naruto's potential, especially as it was a big part of what frustrated him so much that he decided to leave Konohagakure.

I don't think it's so much that he doubts Naruto's capabilities as he's nervous about how much the camaraderie of his old team influenced him - he just doesn't want to lose his burning desire to put Itachi's head on a stake and burn it!

And if he grows closer to others and the memory of his clan starts to fade, then Itachi will become more of a sidenote to him. Not saying that if Itachi suddenly appeared, Sasuke wouldn't want to kill him - but Sasuke wouldn't be hunting for him anymore.

@ SilveryShadows

LoL. I forgot about these grinning faces. Hm... your guess is as good as mine as to whether Kishimoto intended these to be Kirigakure nins, but something tells me he just drew these toothy guys to emphasize the inhuman differences between the normal guys and the guys with the bloodlimits. :-)

@ Iwanin

Good memory to recall Inner Sakura's thought about Sasuke back in the Forest of the Death xD

But I don't think Naruto's posing as Sasuke early in the series had anything to do with some kind of innate knowledge of Sakura's "pervert-ness," Sasuke was just the guy Sakura liked, and that was obvious to everybody in the classroom... even an idiot could have figured it out (hence Naruto pretending to be him >.> )

I don't think Sasuke wants a confrontation with Naruto's team at all - I'm just saying it's probably inevitable even though Sasuke is actually hunting Itachi and the Akatsuki. What I want to know is why Suigetsu and the others would come.

As for Karin and Sasuke... I guess we'll find out next chapter, won't we?

Good observation about Suigetsu definitely having the advantage as Sasuke was surrounded by puddles of water at that moment. It'd be interesting to see what Suigetsu can do with water as a potential weapon, if indeed he can. I found it interesting when he was "drinking" from a water bottle when they were arriving at the Bridge. Does he have to constantly replenish himself with water as he walks on land?

@ baboysai

Yes I agree that we need more female characters in the Naruto series! Especially ones that can handle themselves. Hopefully Karin will be a welcome addition, even if she turns out to be another Sasuke fangirl...

@ ornis

I'm actually not sure if Sasuke's astral battle with Orochimaru could be considered any kind of irrefutable proof that Sasuke now can face "his past." I believe Sasuke still has Itachi on the mind and as long as he's still seeking revenge, he's unable to defy the pain and torture that his past has brought him...

And I believe that Sasuke left Konohagakure in order to foster his hatred for Itachi, so yes, I think his anger's still there. But that's just my guess ^^;

Saifi
March 28, 2007, 07:10 PM
good review GK, i was also kind of surprised by the abruptness of sauske just collecting members, and i don't like the elementals idea but do think that all these people should have bloodlines cause A) that would be a good reason why oro was interested in them in the first place and B) thats the only reason sauske would keep em around no ? because if hes such a bad mofo that he learned all of orochimaru's jutsus (he said oro didn't have anymore to teach him) then why would he need people why not just copy their jutsus and move along !

As far as him wanting to use them as distraction to fight itachi , i dont think that if sauske ever challenged itachi that itachi would allow kisame to interfere with their fight either! so i think he doesn't have to worry about that.

okay now my other problem with team Sauske, the parallel is fine and all but i always thought sauske was a loner and didnt want a team? so why a team? whats he planning that he needs them? isn't he like a lone avenger kind of thing and since he has the whole "You lack uciha blood" attitude why is he even looking to make a team ?

and then of course how can we forget the blatant fan servicefangirl service , and i am not talking about the usual one which you can rate T , no ... i am talking about stuff that would only be on hbo or showtime -_- i mean jeez, this is supposed to be a shonnen manga , (even if it has taken years and most people reading it arnt kids) but jeez ! ( and i dont care if everyfan girl out there whips/flames/stones me for this..) but i must say WTF??

but ya if u really want to salvage anything from it actually story development wise , all i found was the great naruto bridge moment and maybe one can say that konohamaru developed a lot , esp in terms of KB! (and howcome he was all alone then, isnt he usually with his possie ?)

but ya anywhoo , thx for NOT giving this chap a 5/5 , it had its moments but i dont it over all it had much going for it !

MadDog
March 28, 2007, 08:57 PM
I think Gold Knight is right on the money with his thoughts on Naruto already having saved Sasuke. I'm surprised that kishimoto hasn't changed Naruto & Sakura's attitude towards him even slightly, given their last encounter. Not mention Tsunade allowing them to keep persuing their almost selfish obsession with the kid. It's almost not beleivable that Naruto seemingly makes his own agenda, versus that of the village.

Plus, I'm really surprised with where the story is going in this current arc. It seems out of character for Sasuke to all of a sudden start forming a team. He's always been portrayed as longer at heart, not someone who would ever seek help from relative strangers (he's on familiar terms with Suigetsu, but it doesn't seem like they knew each other very well). It'll be interesting to see what his newly formed ninja crew brings to the table in the next few chapters.

ornis
March 29, 2007, 12:26 AM
@GK

I'm actually not sure if Sasuke's astral battle with Orochimaru could be considered any kind of irrefutable proof that Sasuke now can face "his past." I believe Sasuke still has Itachi on the mind and as long as he's still seeking revenge, he's unable to defy the pain and torture that his past has brought him...

*I should clarify more often, the other examples were very rushed, I have something better below*

@MadDog (and as a continuation of my previous post)

The group formation is very strange. I hope it sheds light on Sasuke's ability to use everything that his brother and his twisted "mentor" abused in a different way. Still, the contrast would show his dependency on actions and tools that once oppressed and tempted him: Itachi mind-raped sasuke and the pain was turned against Oro to justify Sasuke's sudden defiance; plus Sasuke is forming a group as Oro did with the Sound Five and Four, and the sound four "helped" Sasuke gain stage two of his CS.

Well, I honestly believe that a certain perceived Sasuke can fade. I have realized my viewpoints limit me if they only view the copycat, er impressionable Uchiha. To me, the nudity in 347 showed how realism and diversion can be blurred very well. It highlights Sasuke's lack of self-reliance and reinforces the impact Itachi has on Sasuke. To rely on such deceptive power, Sasuke's not "in control" without undue and "misleading" assistance. He's a bit unstable *at once I said chaotic :s*

Why can't Sasuke be true to himself---admit he's bought and go find a purpose in his life, not in history's deaths? His life evokes Natalie Imbruglia's Torn almost religiously.

But while I question that, I believe Sasuke could have always wanted power to express it in a way that those who judged him assumed his intent was lustful. Anyone could see his dependency on strength "by any means;" he is chasing power and creating his own as the chase progresses. The growth seems to correlate to his powerlust therefore one could believe his hunger led too the ability, when it does not promote the possibility of how he could learn everything to end his journey to Itachi, not enjoy or embrace it. Well, "When it comes to " overall, "[Sasuke] will be ruthless." That's why I posted the idea that Sasuke's [I]defection, as apart of that journey, could essentially be a grand "genjutsu;" Just an illusion that hides his true quest.


The defection back then could have been Sasuke's first diversion. Hopefully, that will come to pass... then no one ever had to save Sasuke, because his actions and his drama were like a grand genjutsu...

Well, what about Sasuke's view on bonds? Could the "team" he makes, if he makes a team, explore his true feelings? Well, if there's any bond that matters to him it is not the one he shares with Itachi, to me. He still strengthens it; and whomsoever stands with/between him and that stronger tie with Itachi, may not improve Sasuke's desired strength (likely, his family's love and encouragement) but may test his ability to stop Itachi, in Sasuke's way---I hope he won't kill a friend, he seemingly turns around and bluffs about how he can at any whim...

Sasuke's hate is a touchy subject to me. I mean, why did he leave his friends alone when he "defected?" Clearly he tried to kill Naruto though, at the Valley of the End. And Sasuke restrained himself. Even thanked Sakura, immobilized her, then moved on without trying to kill her. When they reappeared, why'd he take so long to finish things on a whim--he didn't finish anything!

If anything he guards their chance to be clear of his obvious path. They have goals. Oro and Itachi stay impulsive, like they're puppets to blind faith. *Deja Vu* Oh, Sasuke may have seen clearly how hate gets him nowhere and that is the destination where he may want to "leave" Itachi.... Maybe by MS or against it. Maybe with Itachi as the pawn in Sasuke's game. He's not letting Itachi leave Sasuke there. I see your point GK.



And I believe that Sasuke left Konohagakure in order to foster his hatred for Itachi, so yes, I think his anger's still there. But that's just my guess ^^;

And I believe there will be Sasuke's life after "hate," even if he has to humbly get there with powers that seem "borrowed..."

*life after hate... with borrowed powers.... Is that what Sasuke meant by claiming "Oro can have [his] afterlife," if need be? Hah, clever play on the whole whimsical attitude---if that's what he meant :blink *
-
And about those puppets to blind faith.... Sasuke could become one.

Someone needs to keep him steady, and Naruto can do just the trick. I just can't forget that Uchiha pride---but the Kyuubi said Sasuke would regret killing Naruto... sounds conflicting: Sasuke's pretty proud. First being able to regret not having the strength to protect his clan, which I believe is most likely eating away at Sasuke's sanity, then to have another person's death cause him to regret.... well, then.

Perhaps, unlike how he can live Sasuke's Way and "impress father," Sasuke can't be a proud Uchiha without "needing" Naruto, without preventing an unknown potential, which he would regret, from ever surfacing... so much for going against blind faith, if he gets too arrogant, maybe this fact will really "burn his wings...." That Icarus comparo (http://www.mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?p=327498#post327498) to Sasuke may not fail.

MadDog
March 29, 2007, 12:43 AM
The group formation is very strange. I hope it sheds light on Sasuke's ability to use everything that his brother and his twisted "mentor" abused in a different way. Still, the contrast would show his dependency on actions and tools that once oppressed and tempted him: Itachi mind-raped sasuke and the pain was turned against Oro to justify Sasuke's sudden defiance; plus Sasuke is forming a group as Oro did with the Sound Five and Four, and the sound four "helped" Sasuke gain stage two of his CS.

Interesting hypothesis. If you compare Sasuke's purpose in creating his new "team", it actually mirrors Orochimaru pretty closely. Basically, he's using them as tools to acheive his goals, and nothing more. In practice, however, it's doubtful that he would be as ruthless and cruel as Orochimaru was to his subordinates (just ask Zaku Abumi and Kin Tsuchi).

ornis
March 29, 2007, 08:57 AM
Interesting hypothesis. If you compare Sasuke's purpose in creating his new "team", it actually mirrors Orochimaru pretty closely. Basically, he's using them as tools to acheive his goals, and nothing more. In practice, however, it's doubtful that he would be as ruthless and cruel as Orochimaru was to his subordinates (just ask Zaku Abumi and Kin Tsuchi).

Oh, absolutely, absolutely. I agree. The reflection of Oro is too bright to ignore, but that could blind one's view of Sasuke's practical intent. I understand the doubt.

leaderofakatsuki
March 29, 2007, 04:33 PM
Why can't Naruto use kage-bunshin no jutsu to perform the futon:Rasengan everytime? This way his original body won't be in contact with Rasenshuriken and hence he won't take that cellular damage. Don't tell me that he will get the damage even if his bunshin is attacked, because bunshins give back the user only experience(and the mental fatigue) and chakra.

juUnior
March 30, 2007, 02:31 PM
I already got my fill of "elemental buddies" from watching the Ghost Rider movie! xD
xDxDxD


I guess you could call my first impression pretty much neutral on his design, it wasn't until later in the story I started to appreciate it a little better.
Haha it was the same with me, when I first just look speedy on Raw which came out :D


Suigetsu is another "God of Flash," eh? Y'know, I think if a guy in the nude was right behind me, I mean, RIGHT there, I think my heart would probably have skipped a beat... whether I killed Orochimaru or not. Sasuke must have had ice in his veins...
I see it other way probably.. sure, it seems if there is water (i think it was because of water on the ground) Suigetsu is really fast, but in my opinion Saske in all likelyhood probably saw that movement of Suigetsu, even without Sharingan. So thats why his heart didnt even bit from shock or whatever. But its probably only me ;p


Oh wow, Zabuza is actually mentioned in this chapter as Suigetsu's "senior".
It was nice to "read" Zabuza'a name again, and senpai to that, ehh memories :D


Makes me think Suigetsu could possibly be from the Momochi clan. Of course, we don't know just how many clans in the Water Country exhibit such distinguishing features as razor-sharp teeth.
Agreed.


But who the hell inspired Konohamaru to do "Double Knockout Guys!???"

I blame the yaoi fangirls. One of them must have gotten into the series and bribed him into doing it!! (LoL @ Sakura's reaction - she's been exposed as a pervert after all!)
hahaha but on the other hand it was useful: Sakura like most of the girls from hobby a&m loves yaoi muahaha xDxD <half-joke>


The Great Naruto Bridge! Actually didn't expect Kishimoto to EVER return to the Land of the Waves at all. It's a nice homage to the first part - the Zabuza arc was what got many of us really loving Naruto - and it's pretty amusing to have seen Sasuke's reaction to the name of the bridge. Just as I would've imagined, though, he just said "hmph."
For me it was one of the best moments in this chapter. The title of the bridge, the reaction of Saske, which probably was good to see it like it was shown, and some nostalgia ^^ The second moment was:

THE RETURN OF ZABUZA'S BLADE!!!
Defiently :D It was the moment which I would never imagine to come again to storyline xD


I loved Zabuza as a bad guy, and I don't believe Suigetsu will be as cool as him, but what the heck.
Yes, Zabuza was one of the best. And with that moment, when Suigetsu talked to Zabuza: senpai and he will now have sword of "Demon" Zabuza :D i queite like him ^^ (in the first look I thought what a freak ;p)

All in all, it was really awesome chapter. Maybe moments with Konohamaru werent superb (for me it would be better to see it in more realted chapter in whole to Naruto person, rather than Saske) it would be one of the greatest ;p

Gold Knight
March 30, 2007, 04:08 PM
Thanks to Kylara for the RAW again! And Hisshou for his translation and Cez & Kokotas for their great MQ scanlation.

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Chapter 348: The Next One!

http://img291.imageshack.us/img291/6774/001ff7.th.png (http://img291.imageshack.us/my.php?image=001ff7.png)

Cover: Suigetsu.

Seems like Kishimoto's trying to do something a little different with him here, eh? Not smiling so much here - he's almost solemn. Almost seems as though he's saying a prayer, isn't he?

Karin's probably going to be on the next chapter cover.

Comment 1:

Suigetsu shoots the question that's been on my mind the last two weeks. What exactly is Sasuke up to?

Sasuke didn't really give us a definite answer though, but he did say that he needed a full platoon to pull off the plan he had in mind effectively. So, why Suigetsu, Karin, and Juugo? Sasuke here says he had selected them all very long ago for their particular abilities.

I couldn't help but think of Shikamaru; he's somebody else who would also think that far ahead - remember how he had come up with a plan in order for his team to be able to defeat Hidan and Kakuzu? Even though Ino and Chouji weren't as useful as Kakashi was in the end, they did each do their part for him.

So is Sasuke developing Shikamaru tendencies? Heh. Well, maybe not all the way. Shikamaru could probably come up with a plan using anybody he had around him. Sasuke might have had to think very carefully about which shinobi to choose because he couldn't do likewise...

Comment 2:

Suigetsu also brings up why he definitely wouldn't like Karin: they were on opposite sides of the fence as far as their feelings about Orochimaru were concerned.

Whereas Suigetsu seemed to bear some sort of grudge against his former captor for having experimented and imprisoned him for so long, Karin apparently is devoted to Orochimaru.

But she's maybe not SO devoted to Orochimaru as he thinks... but I'll get to that in a bit.

Comment 3.

So what are Karin's "unique abilities" that made Sasuke want her on his team so much?

Suigetsu's agreement with Sasuke by saying "oh yeah, she's unique, I'll give her that," really makes me wonder. Especially coming from him...

Comment 4.

Boy, Orochimaru sure liked having prisoners. I wonder how well he took care of them...

Makes me wonder if that's how Karin and Suigetsu fell into his clutches as well, both originally prisoners.

I had to laugh when one of the prisoners thought that the only reason Sasuke came there was to free them.

But man, how much time exactly went by since Sasuke defeated Orochimaru? It didn't take long for the rumors to spread all over? I guess Sasuke and Suigetsu *had* been walking around, though... must have been a week or so.

Comment 5.

Karin's first appearance was kinda eye-opening wasn't it? I loved that she seemed so accusing at the start. "I knew it!" Guess that's the "shitty attitude" Suigetsu mentioned earlier - she definitely seems "bossy."

I have a hard time deciding what the appropriate nickname for her would be ... Glasses? Legs? Spiky? Nerd? Heh.

Although I think I know what all the SasuNaru fans would probably call her, but I want to keep this review PG-rated...

Anyway, she definitely has a different look from the other female kunoichi in the series. Closest would be Kurenai, but she definitely doesn't seem as warm...

I can't help but think of her being a black-haired, female version of Kabuto, though. Heh, so now, not only does Sasuke have a mini-Kisame on his side, he also has a female Kabuto? Wonder if she can heal at all...

Comment 6.

Kishimoto's strength of dialogue writing is really shining through here. We're already becoming accustomed to Suigetsu after only a span of two chapters, and we's starting to get a sense of who he is and how he thinks.

When Sasuke tells him to go free the prisoners, Suigetsu was all like, "still acting like the boss, eh?" He seems somewhat macho in that he doesn't want Sasuke to "look down" on him so he's constantly reminding Sasuke that he doesn't consider him the "boss."

Comment 7.

And that's not even all. When Suigetsu goes to free the prisoners, he told them to spread the word that Sasuke was bringing "peace and safety to the world." He might as well be like, "Sasuke's fighting for Truth, Justice, and the Konoha Way!!!"

Seems like Suigetsu's got a twisted sense of humor. He knew that'd bother Sasuke. I have a feeling Suigetsu's popularity is going to just rise after this chapter. He's definitely personable.

Comment 8.

Back to Sasuke and Karin. Initially Karin was all adamant and refusing to go, then suddenly she changed her mind and "warmed up to Sasuke" as only a fangirl can.

But.... is she so much a Sasuke fangirl, or was she just trying to play him?

I think when the realization hit her that Sasuke did indeed defeat Orochimaru, then her devotion to her former master became obscure. And she decided to go over to Sasuke's side then, and that was when she started putting the moves on.

So she might not be *THAT* lovestruck with Sasuke, but is just trying to charm him into thinking that she could be somebody he can trust. I have a feeling she's "faking" most of it, though I do think she's genuinely attracted to him either way.

Whatever the case, I can imagine this happening in real life, so I have no problem with it. As for everybody who complains, "ugh, not another Sasuke fangirl!" Well - Sasuke was established early on as being a girl magnet, so I actually think Kishimoto is just saying here that Sasuke's "still got it," ya know? We haven't had too many antics lately where girls are all crazy over Sasuke, because he's been nowhere to be seen.

Kishimoto, I believe, just wants to re-establish that part about Sasuke in Part 2 that we already knew from Part 1. So I'm totally fine with it. It also brings up all kinds of interesting drama later on for whenever Sakura or Ino might run into Karin.

Comment 9.

So Kishimoto must have liked the Hulk movie, maybe? Not only can Suigetsu transform to water, he can also control his body parts to grow bigger, too? I guess that's not so surprising, though... I mean, he obviously CAN control his body molecules to begin with...

Makes him more interesting than just a "water guy" in my book, though, so I'm glad.

Comment 10.

SO, Juugo. Uh-oh. He must have been involved in a lot of bathroom scandals while in prison...

Creepy is all I can say. But I can see a lot of people making a *LOT* of jokes as a result of what he said this page... it's definitely got people talking. So all I can say is that Kishimoto did his magic again. Another interesting character coming up, definitely...

FINAL VERDICT: Awesome chapter, I think. 'Team Sasuke' definitely seems to be having a lot of interesting characters, Suigetsu is pretty cool, and Karin is an intriguing character to me. The dialogue, art, and the overall story in this one was top notch.

RATING: 5 of 5

SilveryShadows
March 30, 2007, 04:24 PM
Karin looks like Sasuke, I've read some people write elsewhere.
She does have the spiky hair thing at the back/side.
When I first saw the spoilers, I thought she acted Ishida Uyruu-like (Bleach). With this expression from spoilers images (http://img50.imageshack.us/img50/4289/86287juwokz060122399lofb3.jpg).

I wonder if she's really good at Genjutsu? (Radnom thought. Although Genjutsu isn't useful against Itachi.)

9. It's kinda like Chouji's jutsu.. Somewhat similar to it, in terms of appearance. But maybe it is a blood limit, for Suigetsu?


Great review. :)

Luckas
March 30, 2007, 04:44 PM
Nice review, Gk; with many interesting points.
Just a random thought: so am I the only one who thought Juugo was asking himself if he prefer eating boy or girls?

Gio
March 30, 2007, 05:25 PM
Great comments Gk.

o_o about lucka's thought: i didn't think it at all, but dude.. it makes sense o_o, now i think the same.


About Karin, mmmh.. well i still like her... o_o but dude... in the last chapter i had fallen for her.. now that is gone.. i guess i was just expecting her to be a lot different(Physically and mentally as well). Anyways, i'm pretty curios about how is going to react Kakashi when he hears "Uchiha Sasuke killed Orochimaru"

and finally, Just a thought i would like to share about predictions, when, Konoha finds about this, and as the tension about Oro taking Sasuke's body is out of the picture (at least for now), i can sense Chuunin exams coming later on, as well as Sasuke or Akatsuki making some moves using the Chuunin exams as a bait.

Gold Knight
March 30, 2007, 05:37 PM
In case anybody's interested, by the way, I neglected to mention I did a drawing of Karin and Sasuke, too.

Check it out here! (http://www.mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10925) ^_^

@ SilveryShadows - I think they may need a genjutsu expert, though, in order to cancel Itachi's own illusions, so you MIGHT be right actually. =) But Sasuke and Suigetsu seemed to indicate that she had a little more special ability than that.

Maybe Juugo might be the genjutsu expert...?

And yeah, I did kinda think she could be an Uchiha too, but eh, there's probably millions of spiky-haired people in this world... xD

@ Luckas - woa. o_o I hope not, we already have a Zetsu xD

@ Gio - I think Karin already knew that Sasuke "killed" Orochimaru though.

And I'm definitely curious about how Naruto and Sakura will react when the rumors start to spread to them that Sasuke beat Orochimaru, and he didn't even need their help. Hehe.

arslan
March 30, 2007, 06:09 PM
In case anybody's interested, by the way, I neglected to mention I did a drawing of Karin and Sasuke, too.

Check it out here! (http://www.mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=10925) ^_^

@ SilveryShadows - I think they may need a genjutsu expert, though, in order to cancel Itachi's own illusions, so you MIGHT be right actually. =) But Sasuke and Suigetsu seemed to indicate that she had a little more special ability than that.

Maybe Juugo might be the genjutsu expert...?

And yeah, I did kinda think she could be an Uchiha too, but eh, there's probably millions of spiky-haired people in this world... xD

@ Luckas - woa. o_o I hope not, we already have a Zetsu xD

@ Gio - I think Karin already knew that Sasuke "killed" Orochimaru though.

And I'm definitely curious about how Naruto and Sakura will react when the rumors start to spread to them that Sasuke beat Orochimaru, and he didn't even need their help. Hehe.

as far as genjutsu is considered i think sasuke might need to deal it by himself because sharingan enhanced genjutsu might be too much for the others though it is very hard to speculate on the abilities of sasuke's new *buddies* at this point.:amuse

Gold Knight
March 30, 2007, 06:37 PM
as far as genjutsu is considered i think sasuke might need to deal it by himself because sharingan enhanced genjutsu might be too much for the others though it is very hard to speculate on the abilities of sasuke's new *buddies* at this point.:amuse

You're right! I forgot Sasuke could do it himself. Duh me...

fatboy812000
March 30, 2007, 06:49 PM
its been awhile ,how u been .nice comments as usual ,its seems sasukes clique is going to have some interesting chracters at least.
To be honest i was one of the pple that said uh oh another sasuke fan girl but when u mentioned her bumping into sakura or ino i was snickering cat fight,then theres truth, justice and the shonobi way i wonder the reaction when the news hits the five countries esp konoha poor pple will probably think they can convince him now yeah right.like i said in one of my older posts im really ready to see ninjas from the more obscure villages like cloud and maybe grass with new abilities but seeing suigetsu go all "suigetsu smash puny door" was nice hope karin is even better.anyway glad 2 have u back and keep up the good ish.

Gold Knight
March 30, 2007, 07:01 PM
Yeah, with all that, I think this chapter made the next arc seem pretty promising overall =)

I like how you said "Truth, Justice, and the Shinobi Way," xD

Thanks =) I'm actually not "back" so to speak though... though I have been around more than I thought because I've liked the chapters for Naruto and Bleach so much -.O But I've been making time...

MadDog
March 30, 2007, 07:35 PM
Great chapter overall. It kind of makes me wonder who's the culprit spreading the news. The only people who would have knowledge of Sasuke taking down Orochimaru are Sasuke, Suigetsu and Kabuto. I guess there could have been other prisoner's that were set free at the first base. My guess is Kabuto. What his purpose is, who knows.

Karin is kind of nerd, but the interaction between her and Suigetsu promises to be entertaining (until it gets annoying).

....finally a Jr. Member...whooohoooo....Pissah!

Gold Knight
March 30, 2007, 07:39 PM
Probably Kabuto, though. Definitely can see him sort of talking to somebody who was also at the hideout who was wondering what happened to Orochimaru, and then the news would spread just like that.

And congrats ;D

sahugani
March 31, 2007, 04:03 AM
as promised, here is this Phil's response to another Phil's review

Cover - ya. the image here seems to contrast the attitude he has displayed since we met him. If Kishi does the contrast idea for Juugo (for the impression we have of him at this point) would it be just a perfectly sane person?

comment 1 - at first it seemed a bit strange that Sasuke would start up a team for what i can only assume to be fighting Itachi and Akatsuki since he was so adamant about beating his brother solo. After his speech to Orochimaru though it makes some sense. He can't beat his brother and by beating Orochimaru all he did was beat another person who can't beat Itachi. Then there is the partner, Kisame, to concider. I didn't really think of his preperation as becoming more like Shikamaru but rather as shedding the weakness of his past self. All he did was put 2 and 2 together and see that he needed help. From then on he had 2.5 years to learn the best weaknesses to exploit and the best ones to do them. As you said, Shikamaru's strength is split second planning. No ninja but Naruto goes in without a plan, so Sasuke's actions are simply normal protocol with the advantage of time to plan it perfectly

comment 2 - I was definately looking forward to seeing what exactly clashed between the personalities of Suigetsu and the others that caused him to react as he did. the thought of someone who actually liked Orochimaru is creepy in and of itself, so i can't really blame Suigetsu

comment 3 - From the nature of Sasuke's release of Suigetsu, i at first assumed that the team would be elemental, but now i don't think that is likely. Her ability may have been the reason Orochimaru didn't treat her mean like Suigetsu. Orochimaru highly valued Kabuto's innate medical abilities, but being that Karin was part of the experiments she is probably more like Yamato in that she is the sole survivor of an experiment for a critical ability

comment 4 - Well we know that Suigetsu at least spent his childhood in the hidden mist, so he was likely a prisoner before the experiments. In Karin's case though, i would not be surprised if she was actually born the same way as Yamato and instead was raised among Orochimaru's teachings, causing her acceptance of them.

comment 5 - She was definately not what i was expecting. she seems more like Orochimaru's rude secretary than anything. i did get a good laugh when she ignored Suigetsu though.

comment 6 - I also really liked Suigetsu's attitude about the whole matter. Sasuke's crew is kind reminding me of One Piece in a wierd way. A group of super strong wierdos each with their own quirks all loosely banded together. While Sasuke is the main binding force behind the group, they have no problem acting independantly. Suigetsu's sarcasm while following Sasuke's requests reminded me of Zoro.

comment 7 - I found Suigetsu's line very strange. Sasuke up till now was sided with pure evil and suddenly his team is becoming the new Justice League. I think Suigetsu was just living in the moment as he knew thats just what the prisoners wanted to hear. Lets face it. Sasuke wont give a damn about what the prisoners or the world thinks of him.

comment 8 - I think Karin may actually be genuine about her love for Sasuke. She may just be a very clingy person and now that Orochimaru's gone, she needed someone new to idolize. Kishi took advantage of this and the established attractiveness of Sasuke to have a little fun and make her more rediculous than Suigetsu

comment 9 - seeing Suigetsu's arm was definately strange. Sasuke and Karin did not even give it a moment's notice, but Kishi made damn sure we noticed. He said the sword was heavy, so in order to act as cocky as he did when he picked it up, a muscle mass boost skill makes sense. I'd also like to note that he had reattached the handle to Zabuza's sword, which makes me wonder why he took it off to begin with.

comment 10 - This was my WTF moment for the chapter. Next chapter promises to be hilarious as each of Sasuke's recruits gets a more and more rediculous personality. really all i can say at this point is WTF

Final - I definately enjoyed the chapter. after the recent darkness in Naruto and Bleach, it was nice to have chapters dedicated to comic relief while still progressing through the stories. the humor of Sasuke's recruitment process is making it easier to accept his shift away from the pure evil of Orochimaru

MadDog
March 31, 2007, 09:45 AM
I think both Gold Knight & sahugani raised a good points about Sasuke's strategic planning ability.

What Shikamaru excels at is making instant judgements of his available resources and then placcing them into a postion to succeed. He was able to do this last minute in his first mission as a Chuunin and with a little more time when planning his revenge on Hidan. Shikamaru mainly stands out by planning several steps ahead to defeat much stronger opponents.

Forming an instant plan based on the strengths/weaknesses of the enemy is not uncommmon. Heck, even Naruto put a plan together for defeating Kakuzu.

It is becoming clear that Sasuke has thought out the steps of his plan years in advance, and things are only now starting to come together. He most likely had limited exposure to both Suigetsu and Karin (as well as Juugo and the the pool of other potential recruits). however, he was able to deduce quickly that they would be of use and determined they would fit in his grand scheme.

Like Shikamaru, Sasuke has thought his plan out several steps in advance, picking the available ninja who best fit his plan to defeat a a stronger enemy

miyi
April 02, 2007, 03:01 AM
Wow, Gold Knight, you submitted your review so quickly this time. As usual, thanks for the great review. A very nice Sasuke + Karin fanart, btw.

I agreed with you on most parts.

+ It was nice that you compared Sasuke with Shikamaru, I never would imagine them being put in the same category together. But you

wykowsuki
April 02, 2007, 02:45 PM
(Page 11)
"When you get out spread the word, ""Uchiha Sasuke Killed Orochimaru and set us free"" and that ""He's here to bring peace and safety to the whole world"

For me this statement was the best part of the chapter, Not only does it add a hint of humor it also further blurs Suigetsu's intentions.

I think it may have been added so word will quickly reach Konoha.

Soon Naruto will find out, Sasuke didn't need Naruto to 'save' him from Oro. at all.

miyi
April 02, 2007, 03:37 PM
In addition to what wykowsuki said:

and just as word will quickly spread to Konoha, it will also reach Akatsuki. I agree, this really "blurs" Suigetsu's intentions. What is he up to, exactly?

You know, all Akatsuki needs to do is capture one of the released Oro-prisoners, force him to spill out information about Sasuke's whereabouts and other extra information (i.e. where Kabuto is, the lair's location, etc.).

And then Sasuke won't even have to look for the Akatsuki, because the Akatsuki will come to him. I'm not sure if this is what Sasuke has in mind, but Suigetsu is basically asking for worldwide attention.

Although Suigetsu seems to be the guy who's most loyal to Sasuke, whereas Karin is loyal to Orochimaru, you have to wonder, why is he doing this? Is it with good intentions? Is it because that's how he perceives Sasuke, a liberator and peace-keeper?

There's probably something else going on here. I'd have to learn more about Suigetsu before speculating about their motives.

Navid.
April 03, 2007, 10:16 AM
Great review as always Gold Kight :)

For me the most important aspect of this chapter was all the new information we got about the three new characters, so i will just give my thought on that aspect:

Suigetsu: To me this guy is the new Kabuto, dosen't really like being bossed around, and is smart and ambitious enough to make his own decisions and have his own agenda...

This is most clearly shown when he releases the captive prisoners, I feel he almost does what he does because he can, and not much else... almost like a experiment and to maybe see the reaction from Sauske. This along with their first encounter, would make it the second time he has directly showed that he is his own master, both times his actions have been occurred after he was given a order by Sauske.

In my opinion, Suigetsu will will be the greatest of the three, both as and ally and as a threat to Sauske. The reason why I think so will become clearer as I explain my thought on the other two.



Karin: Now one aspect with karin that really stuck in my mind was how fast she moved away from Sasuke once Suigetsu broke down the door, she then was quick put on her spectacles like a verid parody on Superman.

It almost felt like she has multiple personalities, this really makes her hard to understand without more "screen-time". But I understand well how you (GK) belive she might be a manipulative person... what with her asking Sauske to leave Suigetsu behind.

But I will also say, I dont think that her actions towards Sauske where totally pre-meditated, I do belive she might have some feelings for him even though I don't think that are as apparent as she made them be during that scene.

Aslo her reaction (compared to Suigetsu's) to hearing about Juugo, almost makes me feel she wont be the powerhouse of the group but more of a support/spy/long distance fighter.



Juugo: Only one thought sprung to my mind with the introduction of Juugo, Garra...

Remember how Garra used to talk to himself (and his general behaviour) during the Chunnin exam... Juugo very much resmeble that, sitting there thinking about wheter it would be more fun fighting/killing (I know some people on the forum think he was completating other issues :p ) a man or a woman before somewhat coming to the conclusion that whichever would be fine really.

To me this guy will be the strong, crazy and slightly uncontrollable one in the group, but I think his mind frame will be much simpler than that of Suigetsu or Karin... if this where to be the case, I feel we will be suprised as he could end up being the easiest for Sauske to control and keep hold of out of the three.

Saifi
April 03, 2007, 12:19 PM
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/page1.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/page2.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/page3.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/page4.jpg

Also.....can someone refresh my memory on how to make em thumbnails ?

white silver
April 04, 2007, 11:24 AM
Hello again, GK.

I'm still amazed that you're still doing commentary until this time. I'm very sorry to hear that you won't be continuing for awhile. But nevertheless you are always a great reviewer. Wherever you are, please take care of yourself! Till we meet each other again.

Thanks for the comments through my posts earlier.

ornis
April 05, 2007, 04:51 AM
Great comments, GK! I decided to focus on four.

ON THE COVER:


Suigetsu looks and acts like he's got some insecurities, and the spread for one shows a perhaps reclined nature, I agree, "he looks kinda solemn." But he was bound by Oro, in that giant cylinder… that looked like a great “test tube.” The pic shows me a man basking in the warmth of his seniors “legacy” not knowing the burden or the gift and perhaps "praying," as you stated. He could be praying for a direction… or praying over how to accept Sasuke’s MO for now


ON CMMNT 1:


Heh. What direction is on the Uchiha’s mind, the boy that strides a boss' stride, though as Suigetsu remarks, Sasuke’s “still talking like the boss,” still talking… well, I’ll at least review Sasuke’s bossy stride below


JUMP TO CMMNT 7:






Pondering here, Suigetsu nearly seemed like an innocent “role-playing” child when he removed the Decapitator -- heh, reminds me of Arthur taking Excalibur... that stance of triumph when he held up the sword was very genuine to me---but could’ve been playful, too… Sui wants to be apart of that band of seven, but for whose sake? I mean, Sasuke wanted to belong to his clan in his father’s eyes.
Acceptance: For wanting so genuinely and cheerfully to be in a "circle" that appeals to him, Suigetsu kind of mirrors Sasuke to me. He may just joke about the position Sasuke takes: In the past, none of them were ever leaders or very significant compared to their seniors…. Now Sasuke does talk like he's the boss. At heart though, I guess Sasuke leading for “peace and justice” would be a joke to Suigetsu or a bold ambition---Sasuke seemingly can't lead himself and longs to be significant, but in whose eyes, now: his own or…*swallows* gosh this is sad---what does Suigetsu know about Sasuke... boy does that little bit say so much... That grin, while opening the prison gates, was like a devious show of amusement… or an honest heart that can’t believe what that fan is doing, in my opinion…(About that Stride)


Sasuke seems like an introvert, but he lost his interest in himself to me, as a self-defined person, a time ago. And the team creation highlights his blood’s power. To endure his life this long, sarcastically implies to me that Sasuke's fine, like "God's in his place. All is right with the world." *Thanks, Hideaki Anno* In my opinion, Sasuke is... well, the true Sasuke began to fade when his dad died and wrathful intent "took over" Sasuke's blood...



ON CMMNT 8:


Karin was an "Oro apostle," but if Sasuke consumed Oro, why does she try to push Sasuke’s buttons… for a little bit more than Oro could give? :amuse I can see her "playing" Sasuke, GK.


However, she says she’s tired of being a guard. And I notice Karin doesn’t question Sasuke’s goal(s), just declares her desire to get moving, while being fed up with protecting Oro’s prison---she’s declaring she’ll go with Sasuke not follow him. "You and me, not you ahead/behind, just us; we need to be together. " The entire dialogue shows me more than just a ploy. Karin could benefit from Sasuke and Sasuke could gain something from her; It'd be a mutual agreement, a compromise: She talks to Sasuke as if Sasuke can't reach his goal alone no matter how well he plays "head honcho"... interesting. …Like he's in charge. Would he need Karin---and have to satisfy her, too...?



Suigetsu's comment about Sasuke bringing peace could lean the same way. When it comes to perfect harmony---Sasuke's the one to get it! Right! How could he save the world! Sasuke's probably not really controlling Sasuke. I thought Sasuke knew what Sasuke was planning, what he's directing. But the remark Suigetsu made (I'm thinking sarcasm) dispells me. Sasuke probably just knows what he follows... that hate for now… perhaps it's something he'll regret later...Alright. So Karin sounds like another forced necessity, and she's pushing herself on Sasuke, like Itachi's desired hate... something Sasuke can't breathe without. And yet hate, as a forced necessity, smothers his dignity... Karin highlights how well Sasuke could be running a misleading path, even if he promotes himself as a leader of this group.



The mirror Sasuke looked into as he questioned the similarities between Itachi's purpose and Oro's has reappeared pretty fast to me; and I'm thinking it hints to how dominant either purpose (immortality, itachi's utsuwa) will be later on, even if Sasuke defeats Itachi and has "sealed" Oro away... Sasuke's still there *Your point on how Sasuke may become despicable later looks really sharp, GK. :) * Overall, I believe Karin uses some great psychology and presents a strong reminder of Sasuke's possible foolishness: like he's not leading anything, like he's just following a path and lying to himself as Karin did: "I'm just going in the same direction." It’s as if she screams that Sasuke lies to himself, that Sasuke nearly claims, "I'm only leading myself along this hate path, in my way." Sasuke's trailing Itachi, regardless.... Shucks! *heh* The manga hits me hard, even through the "comedy.” :p Brilliant folds of irony. *Awesome, Kishi*


I agree; it is a great chapter, GK.

Gold Knight
April 06, 2007, 01:24 AM
Thanks guys for your replies =) I actually don't have much time to make much of a response, but here's an attempt anyway:

sahu, I suppose my comparison of Sasuke to Shikamaru wasn't very well received at all, I didn't mean to say that Sasuke was becoming like Shikamaru now, but as you said, he is learning how to include people in his strategies, which is what Shikamaru has so much natural talent at. In the past, I think that Sasuke's always felt like he only had to rely on himself. That's all I really meant by my comment.

Good analysis over all again man =) I agree with you on pretty much everything, especially the One Piece comparisons. I wouldn't be so quick to declare Karin as not having elemental powers though.

MadDog, exactly. =)

miyi, I'll make a point of reading your review soon, apologies for taking so long. I think Karin didn't want to be disturbed by Suigetsu while she was trying to charm Sasuke, and was hoping he'd go away or keep quiet, but I don't think she expected him to just burst into the room with his sword, heh.

wykowsuki, agreed =)

miyi, I don't think the Akatsuki would be looking for Sasuke, though. Though they did seem to show a little bit of interest in that Orochimaru had captured him back at the end of Part 2 so I could be wrong on that. I'm *hoping*, really hoping, that Sasuke's not another bijuu, though...

Navid. - interesting observations you have on all three - I don't know if Suigetsu will be the greatest (after all Sasuke is on the team) but he certainly has the most potential to be the most sneaky, if you know what I mean...

Nice thought there on Karin possibly having multiple personalities (a take on a female Clark Kent/Superman? heh) and Kishimoto has always wanted to show that the fair sex had secret personas they like to keep hidden (like Inner Sakura)... so maybe this is another case.

Good one to compare Juugo's mumblings to Gaara's inner ramblings too. This may be our next Gaara for all we know, and this one could be an adult. An older man, even, maybe? That'd be even creepier... he's probably been locked under key and chain in there a long time, if Orochimaru was able to develop the cursed seals several years in advance...

Saifi, you've got awesome handwriting. A little like mine even. I should write my next 10 Comments in my own handwriting, just for the heck of it, too. ;)

But yeah, as you said, "Spunky" is definitely attracted to power, very well put. 2-faced? Likely. Again that could be something Kishimoto wants - this time he's able to explore the personality of a scheming power-hungry gal - something he hasn't really had much opporunity to do until now. =)

And good catch on Suigetsu's possibilty of being able to do something with his "finger" while he was pointing it to Sasuke's head last chapter - something I was just thinking about the other day too as I was rereading Japflap's HQ. I'm thinking he could have had his finger "enter" Sasuke's head through the ear and really done nasty things to him. That is, if he's able to do that before Sasuke leaps the hell away from him, which he probably could have done, heh.

white silver - thanks for visiting and hope everything's well. Yeah, I've had to really cut down on the length of my commentaries but I still manage somehow to get my thoughts out anyway so maybe this is a good way for me to learn how to write better? ;) Something to be said about just getting to the point at times...

ornis - you just made me think of something interesting - Suigetsu's obviously been held prisoner all this time by Orochimaru, yet it doesn't seem to have scarred or changed him in any way - I have the feeling that his personality is still pretty much left the same as when Oro found him. Even despite the experiments. Maybe I'm wrong, but I get the feeling he definitely has strong willpower either way...

Good points about Suigetsu possibly wanting to be accepted in Sasuke's eyes, but not as one who's looked down on. That sounds like the best way of describing his attitude at the moment to me.

I think Sasuke's very well written though, even though I don't like him much as a character. But the thing is, he's an avenger - and these type of characters are incredibly tough to draw with the intention of having them be a big part of the story. Writers have the temptation to completely rewrite them as more likeable and less concerned about their original goals.

Kishimoto's not doing that, I hope, so the challenge is: how to make an obsessed avenger exciting to the readers? Just by making him an introvert, mysterious, not knowing what exactly he's scheming at the moment. And surround him with a cast that can bring out his "other qualities" without sacrificing the core of his character. Which is at the moment is exactly what's going on ;)

I'll be interested in following what Karin has in mind for Sasuke, for sure, too. She seems to have the incredible potential of completely distracting Sasuke from his goal. In its own way, she's another obstacle to him, but also apparently he needs her. Must be frustrating for him ;)

Navid.
April 06, 2007, 07:39 AM
Navid. - interesting observations you have on all three - I don't know if Suigetsu will be the greatest (after all Sasuke is on the team) but he certainly has the most potential to be the most sneaky, if you know what I mean...

Nice thought there on Karin possibly having multiple personalities (a take on a female Clark Kent/Superman? heh) and Kishimoto has always wanted to show that the fair sex had secret personas they like to keep hidden (like Inner Sakura)... so maybe this is another case.

Good one to compare Juugo's mumblings to Gaara's inner ramblings too. This may be our next Gaara for all we know, and this one could be an adult. An older man, even, maybe? That'd be even creepier... he's probably been locked under key and chain in there a long time, if Orochimaru was able to develop the cursed seals several years in advance...

Well what I said about Suigetsu, was in relation to the other two, as a subordinate/partner to Sasuke this is exactly what I said:

In my opinion, Suigetsu will will be the greatest of the three, both as and ally and as a threat to Sasuke.

Now, i'm sorry if I wasnt clear and therefore caused the confusion, but what I meant was that out of the three that Sasuke has picked, I felt Suigetsu is the one with most personal ambition and therefore can either become a great ally to Sasuke or a threat to Sasukes own personal ambition...

Having just looked at the spoiler pictures posted by the Touch (thanks by the way), look at Karin in her front view pictures, one side of her hair, is spiky while the other side is neat and flat, the two being split at the very middle... almost directly hinting to a split personality.

Gold Knight
April 06, 2007, 12:04 PM
Ah, maybe. I do agree that Suigetsu has the most potential to be a long-lasting character in the series over the other two. =)

I just thought of something regarding Juugo, it could be that he's a shapeshifter and he was trying to decide on which he would prefer to be when he escaped, a guy or a woman.

Just a random thought that entered my head. Guess we'll see.

kiddo7
April 06, 2007, 02:40 PM
Well answers to a few questions are finally here. I can't wait for your analysis of this chapter. Juugo should turn out to be an interesting character, I think he and Naruto would get along just fine. And sorry but no, he is not trying to decide on who he should shape shift into. although the shape shifter guess is not too far off.

I should stop now before I start spoiling everyone. TTYL

juUnior
April 06, 2007, 03:04 PM
Good one to compare Juugo's mumblings to Gaara's inner ramblings too. This may be our next Gaara for all we know, and this one could be an adult. An older man, even, maybe?
Maybe it will be true, after reading chapter 349 it comes to, that Juugo is actually some sort of power (im not spoilering till now ;p). Can't wait what will you write about that GK :D

Gold Knight
April 07, 2007, 12:03 AM
Once again, Kylara has come to our rescue here with the RAW. Consider yourself lucky we have *such* a fantastic girl as her hanging out here who's willing to spend some of her valuable time scanning her mags in order to help us out! Thanks also to Hisshou for his terrific translation and Dynamic Dragon for his MQ scan, and Japflap for continuing to do their terrific HQs!

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Chapter 349: North Base!

http://img398.imageshack.us/img398/8370/page1011jp2.th.jpg (http://img398.imageshack.us/my.php?image=page1011jp2.jpg)

Comment 1:

Okay, so I get the North Hideout's supposed to be full of terrifying, twisted human experiments due to it being Orochimaru's primary laboratory.

What I don't get is why Karin seemed so disgusted when talking about the "horrible, unnatural monsters." I mean, as one of Orochimaru's "dedicated followers," she was likely to have a hand in some of these creations, too! Yes, she could just have been nervous about the inevitable riot that would take place there shortly, but I still had the feeling she was somehow disgusted with the place. Which did strike me as kinda odd. Maybe she just wanted to try to find a little more romantic place for her and Sasuke to be, heh.

Comment 2:

Ah, so we get the answer to Juugo's cryptic ramblings at the end of the last chapter - he was thinking of which he'd rather want to kill right now, a guy or a girl. Still kinda twisted, but definitely not as bad as we all thought he was talking about at first!

Comment 3.

Suigetsu sure likes to take a lot of breaks to sip some water (assuming that's what it is). Karin accused him of being tired a lot due to carrying Zabuza's blade around. Heh, well, it'll build up his stamina with time, I guess. I'm guessing he wasn't too big on endurance before.

I'm kinda curious about whether he has to drink a lot of water in order to replenish himself or not. He also seemed to be just fine when walking on water or close to it (as on the bridge), but not on land. Hmm.

Either way, I don't get the sense he's really a "slacker" as Karin called him. It's almost as though he *has* to stop to rest one way or another. Wonder how Sasuke feels about that slowing down the progress - but he naturally hasn't said much about it to this point.

Comment 4.

Karin, incidentally, seems *really* flaky right now. She's obviously trying hard to hook up with Sasuke but she still seems very embarrassed if her feelings are in any way suspected or revealed to Suigetsu. Which all does seem to imply that she's truthfully romantically interested in Sasuke, whether it's because she's attracted to power or just a pretty boy... or both, I guess!

I can't help but wonder if she's determinely trying to act like an amateur at hiding her feelings or she has an ulterior motive in seeming so, though. I think that I'd like for the latter to be true - because if Karin's just being a great actress right now instead of being so obvious, then it'd only add to the drama and the story even more.

Unfortunately I don't think that's the case here. She really is nuts about him - or just plain nuts!

Comment 5.

Good! Now we get the answer to why Suigetsu went along with Sasuke: he has his own agenda, too. Maybe they're both out for revenge. I like that our questions were answered pretty early on.

Something tells me Suigetsu will have his own back-story that'll be revealed pretty soon.

Comment 6.

I absolutely loved the subtle humor in the page where Suigetsu accused Juugo of being crazy of coming to Orochimaru "under his own will," and Sasuke looking over to him and seeming a little put off by that comment. Priceless stuff.

Would have totally rocked too if Suigetsu actually knew that Sasuke did the same thing, but wanted to egg him on anyway.

Comment 7.

So Juugo, somebody who seemingly can't control his powerful "killing intent," is, basically, the origin of the Cursed Seal. Excellent!

One of the things I was so nervous about after Orochimaru's defeat was that Kishimoto would just totally skim over the whole history of the Cursed Seals and how their power operated, but looks like we're going to get our answers on all that, too. Or maybe we already did with this chapter.

It would also explain why Orochimaru couldn't take away Sasuke's Cursed Seal during his fight with him - he actually didn't have any power over it after all.

Think vampires - Orochimaru's had Juugo's blood - or enzymes if you want to get detailed - on his fangs, he went to bite Sasuke's neck, the venom bestowed the Seal on his victim, and the Seal changed Sasuke into another Juugo. Or would have.

Without taking the proper methods to "stop" the Seal from overtaking his body, it would have killed him or made him incapable of controlling himself, and maybe that's what Tayuya meant by that it would enslave him to Orochimaru - just like Juugo right now. Well, or maybe most victims.

Comment 8.

I was really afraid when I saw the dude that was tearing up the place, thinking at first that this guy was Juugo. I was like, hadn't we already seen this guy before? Remember Jiroubou of the Sound Four? Yeah, this guy seemed like his twin brother or something.

If he HAD turned out to be Juugo, I would have had serious doubts about Kishimoto's creativity - he really would have seemed like he was running out of character designs. I needn't have worried.

Must have been Kishimoto wanting to psych the readers out a little bit. He got me.

Comment 9.

I actually didn't expect Sasuke to be able to take care of "Jiroubou #2" in a single sword stroke. Looks like Karin shouldn't have worried either!

Comment 10.

So, Juugo is going to kill a girl if one opens the door eh? Heh, I predict already we're going to get a little scary moment where it seems like Karin is gonna open the door next chapter. Mark my words.

Juugo's face being revealed above the nose almost makes me think he could be related somehow to the Akatsuki leader. He seems to have the same hair and facial shape. Eyes of course are different - no double pupils - but I can't help but think Kishimoto decided to go with a different design for the Leader altogether and used another design he had in mind for him for Juugo instead. Guess we'll see.

FINAL VERDICT: Another very good chapter, though a bit too much on the talky side and not enough action, so I'm going to have to give it less than a 5 rating. Lots of answers though which made me happy.

RATING: 4.5 of 5

juUnior
April 07, 2007, 10:34 AM
Ah, so we get the answer to Juugo's cryptic ramblings at the end of the last chapter - he was thinking of which he'd rather want to kill right now, a guy or a girl. Still kinda twisted, but definitely not as bad as we all thought he was talking about at first!
hehe I thought he will be like Sai or a little like that, but actually it seems his "playing" :D


I'm kinda curious about whether he has to drink a lot of water in order to replenish himself or not. He also seemed to be just fine when walking on water or close to it (as on the bridge), but not on land. Hmm.
Good point. Actually it makes sense, because of that "entrance" from water :D


Good! Now we get the answer to why Suigetsu went along with Sasuke: he has his own agenda, too
hehe I am happy with that line. I wonder what it will be.. he already told prisoners before he realsed them, that "Sasuke is saviour of the world", so actually like he said, Saske is going to "help" him with something. And I hope it will be true :D


I absolutely loved the subtle humor in the page where Suigetsu accused Juugo of being crazy of coming to Orochimaru "under his own will," and Sasuke looking over to him and seeming a little put off by that comment. Priceless stuff.

Would have totally rocked too if Suigetsu actually knew that Sasuke did the same thing, but wanted to egg him on anyway.
xDxDxD


So Juugo, somebody who seemingly can't control his powerful "killing intent," is, basically, the origin of the Cursed Seal. Excellent!
Probably one of the best moments in chapter. Finally another answers ^^ I really believed that Kishi will show us that thing, and actually it's just happening :D


Must have been Kishimoto wanting to psych the readers out a little bit. He got me.
Me too... I though back then: this is Juugo!? wtf .. and then ehhh he looks like filler character or something like that.. and after seeing this for few minutes, I read later on and show that it was actually some minor person, porbably just to show contrast on CS and story related in this chapter about Juugo.


I actually didn't expect Sasuke to be able to take care of "Jiroubou #2" in a single sword stroke. Looks like Karin shouldn't have worried either!
hehe another one of the best moments in entire chapter, I like that very much :D

btw. it looks like Suigetsu and Karin didn't know about CS on Saske, or I'm mistaken only? But they really when they were talking about it, they not even special consider seeing or talking about it to Saske. But probably im more into that, they just must know it already, and Saske's neck :x

All in all, very good chapter. Cant wait for more info on Juugo and on CS :D

arslan
April 07, 2007, 10:48 AM
good review GK. i also find Suigetsu's comments about Juugo being retarded to join oro of his own will very funny and kinda ironic since sasuke did the same. it would have been funnier if sasuke tried to argue in Juugo's favor that Juugo might have his "own reasons'. trying to cnvince that he, sasuke, is not retarded like suigetsu said. would have been a great comic relief but kishi wants to depict sasuke as a rigid character for now.

kiddo7
April 07, 2007, 10:51 AM
Nice review GK I might come back to answer later.

SilveryShadows
April 07, 2007, 05:47 PM
5. Suigetsu has a vengeance on Kisame maybe? Or something totally unrelated to Akatsuki.
Or to find his long lost brother, Sai.

7. Then, why doesn't Orochimaru give himself the Curse Seal, and use it himself?

8-9. Don't know if you noticed or not, but that guy in CS2 form, he has hand-wing thing that looks like Sasuke's, except it looks like it grew from his arms and hands, instead of from the back. And the wings don't quite look like a hand, but more wing like, with those' finger' things.

10. I thought so too! First thought was: he's either related to AL, or is AL himself.
Guess we'll find out more if next week's colour page is of Sasuke's new team. If Juugo has orange hair, then....

Great review!

Nybarius
April 07, 2007, 06:26 PM
I am sure somebody has already predicted this, but it seems likely to me that Sasuke is going to use Juugo's blood as a way of furthering his sharingan powers. If he "lacks hatred," Juugo might be the best way to induce it artificially.

lordHokage
April 07, 2007, 07:24 PM
Once again, excellent comments. I completely agree with you on everything, but we differ on Juugo’s relationship status. He bears a resemblance to the Third Hokage, in my opinion.

juUnior
April 08, 2007, 10:00 AM
but we differ on Juugo’s relationship status. He bears a resemblance to the Third Hokage, in my opinion.
hehe Your right, I didnt thought about it, but he also resembles that. And if we differ from Naruto manga, than he also resembles in someway "L" from DN haha :D

sahugani
April 08, 2007, 11:13 AM
Sorry it took a while for me to get to commenting here. Things were wierd friday and i spent most of yesterday working on a few MH projects

Comment 1 - Its interesting that you mention Karin's apparent disgust. However, i don't think that she was ever a part of the process at the North base and thus her disgust is only natural. Her attitude and the impression i got from her base was that her role there was more for general management and storage of prisoners rather than experimentation. i think only the mad scientists like kabuto would actually deal with running this place. being in her position though, she did have access to all the stories of the North base experiments and is is thus more knowlegable

Comment 2 - While it is good to find out what he actually meant, it signals that Kishi is dropping the intense humor of this arc and is now making us take Sasuke's journey more seriously.

Comment 3 - I agree with you regarding Suigetsu's frequent stops. I don't think he's lazy or that it is a result of low endurance. It most likely has to do with whatever physiological condition he developed as a result of or that intrigued Orochimaru. What that is we have yet to see

Comment 4 - hahaha. once again i agree. Karin is simply head over heels for Sasuke. While an ulterior motive would be nice, i think we'll already get that from Suigetsu and i would much rather focus on that one than create a second split in the group

Comment 5 - As i just said, i think Suigetsu will be the one to surprise us with his real intention later on down the road and i can't wait till that day comes

Comment 6 - That look gave me a good giggle as well. Sasuke is a bit irked, but nothing will penetrate his "i don't give a shit" attitude

Comment 7 - That was definately the big revelation of the chapter. I know it caused a lot of stir when Sasuke used the cursed seal against the man who supposedly controls him through it. Now we finally have an explanation and we actually get to meet and recruit the man who it stemmed from. my question is, how will they keep him from killing them?

Comment 8 - I was on the same page as you as i saw that guy's rampage and was shocked to see Sasuke slay the guy Kishi tricked us into thinking was Juugo. In hindsight, why would the prison use the ball&chain method on prisoners strong enough to do that much damage? they are clearly strong enough to walk and even attack with it

Comment 9 - That really says alot about Sasuke's strengthat this point to one hit KO a level 2 curse seal, so good luck catching up Naruto

Comment 10 - I've got the same feeling as you regarding Karin's threat of death. also, now that you mention it, Juugo does somewhat resemble the AL, so i wouldn't doubt that connection

kiddo7
April 08, 2007, 03:48 PM
Am I the only one who is a firm believer of the "Karin has an ulterior motive" theory?
From the instant I saw her lock the door and then suddenly put the moves on sasuke I have been convinced that this cannot be "true love" I think this is a classic case of "bad guy gangs" where everybody is planing on stabbing everybody in the back, That is what I believe.

lordHokage
April 08, 2007, 04:44 PM
Am I the only one who is a firm believer of the "Karin has an ulterior motive" theory?
From the instant I saw her lock the door and then suddenly put the moves on sasuke I have been convinced that this cannot be "true love" I think this is a classic case of "bad guy gangs" where everybody is planing on stabbing everybody in the back, That is what I believe.


No, you

ibra87
April 08, 2007, 06:22 PM
Nice to see that I'm not the only one who thought Sasuke getting an insult indirectly was kinda funny. He still didn't say anything though, but he might have unleashed all the anger and frustration inside him at the CS2 dude. Poor guy. What's weird is that Suigetsu didn't know what it was. Guess Orochimaru's never let him out because of the dangerous abilities he has I guess. Kishimoto got me good with tricking me into thinking Juugo was that guy. Although I did notice that he was a bit too fat if compared to the sneak peaks we've had of him so far.

Also I've noticed Sasuke looking down as if ashamed or sad when Karin was talking about Cursed Seal's source. Wonder why? As far as I'm concerned he's pretty happy for it (remmeber the time he told Naruto he's not the only one who's special?).

Let's hope Juugo's state is more than the Cursed Seal. After all he has it all over his body, so hopefully he's able to boost himself up more than the others, especially since it looks like he gets so much power he can't control it anymore.

Thanks for the comments GK (and nice fanart of Team Sasuke btw).

ornis
April 09, 2007, 12:27 AM
@ ibra87: About Karin's insult... I thought it was sad *and freaking hilarious!* But Sasuke should deal with the blow... it's his drawback for pulling those guys together. Though, at least some advantage could come from it...

-
GK, I nearly agreed with you on all points, but I'm a bit obsessed with one more than the others: Karin's like a talking microscope in this chapter. And that's just how you play hard to get!

I don't think it's just because she likes him either! *I like your point* It's like she can't help herself :D like's she's trying so hard not to, but she finds Sasuke in her mouth, no matter what... :blink ...On my take of the scene...


Karin---boy does she pay attention to Sasuke. I mean the detailing talk about Curse Seals... it's like she's picking apart the guy---bite wound and a little bit more *perhaps it's mere coincidence?*

Well, Thanks to HisshouBuraiKen, I know more about the Curse Seal via Karin's... "analysis." Karin reveals Sasuke's Curse Seal to be the product of Oro abusing a "junkie's" urges. Juugo had a demon within him that would appear from time to time. And Sasuke looks away when she mentions what allowed Oro to place other ninja's in Juugo's "liberal" though ironically suppressive state

*which Oro wanted to do and did use to manipulate people---well, then... (what a genius, Karin, to of speak it---right after it failed to manipulate Sasuke!)*

Why does Sasuke look off? Well, Karin even says that Juugo snapped, forgot himself, and thus, became that monster Oro took note of *hint, hint* Sasuke nearly did all that at the Valley of the End. He at least remembered himself :)

Clearly, Karin has her glasses on for a reason... the magnification of Sasuke is a bit high. She seems to know so much about him; maybe shes's too obssessed if she intended to "hit on him" like that. :eyeroll I agree GK, its like she's foaming at the mouth (It's rabid OCD, I say! RABID!!)

This is why an image of Sasuke as the unfortunate but very defiant Icarus just won't leave my mind... he's reaching for power while taking uncontrollable and seemingly strong willed people (that mirror him to me) for the ride.

(Yes, Karin goes against Sasuke's purpose to me, but she could resemble just a suppressed nature Sasuke has; and he hates it so much he won't show it through him...)

He seems like he's declaring he's an introvert by grouping the needy, the twisted, and the aspiring sides of him for some goal---but they're physical counterparts this time, showed in a subtly extroverted way.

This layers the cake thicker for Sasuke. His "serving" of revenge might fall on the floor before it's even done... I wouldn't be surprised if he gets "no satisfaction" from taking on Itachi, he has some other goal to me...

-

Am I the only one who thinks Sasuke's crew members are nearly "self-relative" monsters in his pocket... but he just can't carry big enough balls to contain them?

It's like he's revealing every part of him and trying to "organize" it before us... even with the many personalties of him dancing all about... it's really interesting, to me. And very entertaining :nuts *Dance for me beasts, DANCE!! :kukuku*

Everyone mimics some quality of his, and if he could losely manage these creature-feature "personifications," he'd be closer to managing himself... he'd be a self-savior! They all create a new take on group therapy... the group forms a picture of the leader, the one with the important problem, so the leader can say "I'm on my way to fixing myself by examining an active billboard of me." Absurd? Maybe. But very hilarious... and laughter is ... okay---WON'T go that far.

Sasuke's flying high to me. Duality intended. Heh, and I guess Karin's high off of him LOL.

In the last three Chapters, regardless of what foolishness Karin protects and what Juugo helped Oro start, Sasuke intends to use them, the... forsaken to me... they never had control of anything, none of them. It's as if he's defying the past: He knows he had no control but he's going headstrong anyway into the future with unstable creatures "supporting" his parade.

-

This seems like a deceptive "joint-salvation" arc to me. The focus might be Sasuke's self-deliverance in his own, uh... self-reflective way...

But taking control of Juugo could make Sasuke very proud and then he could lose his entire "self-leader/self-savior" image in a moment---by losing to someone who is more "forsaken..." than he could ever imagine... immediately afterward. *And I agree, Sahugani: the Sasuke bit seems to be getting more serious as we go.*

Then Sasuke just might need a real team... Unless these tools prove that Sasuke doesn't need anyone to save him but himself... *which would prove he isn't high, in a bad way...*

Gold Knight
April 09, 2007, 07:21 PM
( Ornis, just so you know, you can edit your original post instead of deleting and re-posting ;) )

I've read everybody's replies, thanks all! I'll try to come back on Wednesday to answer everybody. I've just had a busy couple of days and I'm currently in the middle of drawing some stuff right now ^^;

Also just so you guys know, I'm planning to do a "full review" for Chapter 350 since it's, well, numero 350! And also my 50th Naruto review here at MH not counting my massive review for Volume 32 (wow... where has the time gone by?)

But probably just this week for now... =)

kiddo7
April 09, 2007, 08:13 PM
awesome! can't wait for the resurrection of the full Gold Knights 10 comments. even if it is only for one week, it will be a good week.

leaderofakatsuki
April 10, 2007, 02:06 AM
Why can't Naruto use kage-bunshin no jutsu to perform the futon:Rasengan everytime? This way his original body won't be in contact with Rasenshuriken and hence he won't take that cellular damage. Don't tell me that he will get the damage even if his bunshin is attacked, because bunshins give back the user only experience(and the mental fatigue) and chakra.

kiddo7
April 10, 2007, 08:34 AM
you know, that is an excellent observation and a great question and it might end up being his solution to the problem.

MadDog
April 10, 2007, 10:49 PM
Great analysis as always.

Comment 1:

Karin's reaction struck me as odd as well. I'm on board with the theory that she's not what she seems to be. As a hardcore Orochimaru servant, it's unlikely that she's be that put off by what was going on at the north hideout. I think we've yet to see the real Karin.

Comment 3.

Who knows how long the kid was locked up in the water tank for. He probably hasn't had a chance to do mutch excercise (besides tred water, maybe).

Comment 4.

I think you're on to something with the actress angle. But, it's probably a combination of her acting and actually wanting to hook with Sasuke.

Comment 6.

The dig at Sasuke and his reaction were great. Totally intentional, in my opinion.

Comment 7.

I'm curious about Juugo's age. If his being the origin of the "curse seal" is to make sense, wouoldn't his relationship with Orochimaru have to extend prior to his leaving Konoha? Anko receiving the curse seal after that time would be dubious (plus, the filler explenation with the fish-girl doesn't count). The timeline for Juugo seeking help from Orochimaru would would have to be almost 15 years ago! At least, Juugo would have to be in his mid twenties. Maybe I'm over thinking this.

Comment 9.

Sasuke's super speed is kind of rediculous. It looks like he got there before all the rubble settled. He pulled the same move in the last meeting with Naruto. How do you counter that?

Looking forward to the full review for this week's chapter.

Gold Knight
April 16, 2007, 08:01 PM
Sorry for the lateness everybody. I know what I said - that I'd do a full review for 350.

But that was before I read the chapter, and well, I think I'm going to save the extra treatment for another chapter - because I really didn't find that much to talk about that I didn't already say something about before, to be honest ^^;

That and I'm still a little bit preoccupied even today unfortunately... so if you guys don't mind I'll just do another short 10 comments for this one, too. (Maybe I'll do the full review next time).

Though it is still my 50th Naruto review here at Mangahelpers, so yay for anniversaries! xD

Ok, on to the chapter itself. Once again Kylara has to get the credit for providing the full chapter for us, Hisshouburaiken for translating, and also thanks to NBST for the scanlation as well as everybody else who did one.

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Chapter 350: Ground-Breaking News!

http://img407.imageshack.us/img407/233/nbstnaruto3500102qn6.th.jpg (http://img407.imageshack.us/my.php?image=nbstnaruto3500102qn6.jpg)

Cover: Uhm, yes. Well, compare the colored spread we got for Naruto to what the Bleach fans got last week (best covers I've seen in forever), and I think it's probably obvious why I didn't feel very enthusiastic about this one.

Not only did it not satisfy by choosing to not reveal the official colors of Sasuke's new comrades yet, it wasn't even a dynamic spread either.

Comment 1:

Actually, I don't blame Naruto for misunderstanding the situation when Sakura came to his door and knocked on it. Granted, they're teammates, but it's usually not the girl who comes knockin'. Hehe, and Sakura's angry reactions is starting to make me think that she's just hiding her feelings, too.

I wonder if Naruto's sleeping habits have changed lately because of his injured arm (since he overslept). That wound sure is taking him a while to heal fully, even with the Kyuubi inside him.

Comment 2:

Jiraiya's back, eh? Somehow I can't help but feel that Kishimoto has seen the Shippuden anime and realized he needed to give us more scenes with both Jiraiya and Tsunade in the manga, too.

Comment 3.

So Naruto and Sakura now knows that Sasuke defeated Orochimaru, if he didn't outright kill him at least.

While not unexpected, I do like that Kishimoto didn't take his sweet time in letting them hear the rumors too, since they certainly seem to have already spread over all the Five Lands.

Comment 4.

Ah, Naruto, Naruto. First he says that he knew Sasuke would free himself all along (if that's true, why the heck did he worry so much, heh) - and then he goes and naively expects Sasuke to be coming home. Sometimes I get the feeling Naruto actually doesn't know Sasuke ALL that well...

Comment 5.

Okay, so we get a change of scenery, and we see Team Sasuke facing down an army of Cursed Seal monsters. And Sasuke asks Karin to apparently scan them all to see if Juugo is one of them...?

Suigetsu would seem to confirm it later that one of her abilities is apparently "finding." Does she have an sixth sense or something that works like the Byakugan?

And man, I guess Cursed Seal monsters weren't that rare after all. I wonder if they were all rejected concepts by Kishimoto while he was inventing the Sound Four, heh. Orochimaru must have had them all locked up because he couldn't keep them all under his watch, and they'd probably bring too much attention to him if they ever did get out of control...

Comment 6.

Oh, man, so Sasuke didn't kill that dude last chapter after all. Though Suigetsu certainly seems to believe it's due to Sasuke being a Leaf Ninja, heh, but I wonder if Kishimoto is just trying to convince us that Naruto and Sakura's former teammate is still on the side of good.

Still... even Leaf Ninja kill, too, don't they? I know I saw Kakashi kill, before. I know the Leaf are more of pacifists than ninja from other countries, partly thanks to Sandaime's teachings, but, well, if Kishimoto is trying to create the impression that Leaf Ninja (ie. Naruto) will somehow be failures if they kill too often, that idea isn't going to be very popular with the fans, I think.

But either way, right there, we probably just got a hint that Naruto is probably never going to be much of a killer in the entire series. Not that I could see him being one anyway.

Comment 7.

Kinda annoying that one second we see a whole army hissing and snarling at Team Sasuke, and the next page they're all on their backsides gasping for breath and mercy. And we didn't get to see any action at all.

I guess the point was just to let us know that Team Sasuke was definitely formidable, but c'mon, Kishimoto, at least one lousy page of exciting action, even if it is of Sasuke and Suigetsu swinging their swords, wouldn't have hurt.

But instead we just got a guy moaning, "too strong," right before he loses consciousness. Yeah, we'll have to take your word for it. Wuss.

Comment 8.

Once again we get a little Suigetsu-Karin "internal conflict" where this time, Karin misdirects Suigetsu in going one way and she goes off the other way with Sasuke. More than ever now, Karin really seems like a spoiled kid to me. I'm not quite liking her as much as I did at the start, even though this scene was still mildly amusing.

What surprises me is Sasuke went along with it without even bothering to call Suigetsu back. He must have been more concerned with finding Juugo at the time.

I think the one thing that really made an impression on me, though, was that Sasuke hasn't changed ALL that much.

'Would you let me go? I can walk fine on my own.' What does that remind you of...? How about the next-to-last panel of this oldie? Heh. (http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/454/naruto36018qo1.jpg) Same ol' Sasuke.

Comment 9.

Hmmm, so we get our first real look at Juugo's full face. He seems to me more like a psychotic punk than anything else. You guys know something though? It'd be interesting if he actually turned out to be the reverse of that, and that he was actually a very nice guy who wouldn't even hurt a bug. But having been locked up for so long probably put his "rage illness" in overtime.

Comment 10.

So, big battle coming up between Sasuke and Juugo next chapter? I hope we'll get to see some REAL action this time, unlike when they were fighting the monsters. Well, I'd like to see Juugo actually put a scare in Sasuke. I sort of think the biggest reason Sasuke wanted Juugo is for his fighting prowess, so...

FINAL VERDICT: Okay, hate to say this, but this wasn't the most memorable chapter ever. I think Kishimoto is back to his old habits of sort of slowing down the pace again. But a chapter that gave me this much trouble finding something to talk about, isn't a particularly great one at all. Just a lead-in to the next chapter, a filler, though I am glad Naruto and Sakura found out about Sasuke's escape, and that we finally got to the final member of Team Sasuke. So... a 4 it is this time.

RATING: 4 of 5

SilveryShadows
April 16, 2007, 08:36 PM
1. Kyuubi can't heal cellular damages (well)? It used to be a wound can be healed within a few days, but this time..

3-4. What will Naruto and Sakura do now? Obviously, Sasuke doesn't need any kind of 'saving' from them. Will they still 'try to bring him back'? Or wait for Sasuke to come back?(unlikely, the wait and Sasuke returning of his free-will before he completes his goal.)
Almost three years, Naruto and Sakura's 'saving Sasuke' really didn't have a purpose. Sasuke never needed 'saving'.

All this conflicts with the 'image' of Sasuke we learned from his first appearance in chapter 306-.
His whole speech, was really just for show (to show Oro), wasn't it? (And trying to get Naruto to stop trying to save him, but that didn't work of course) Before these chapters, it would have seemed that Sasuke had the intention of killing Naruto if he wasn't stopped. However, now, his actions back then need re-evaluating.


5. Karin can sense chakra? Or through scent? Or some kind of telepathic ability? The possibilities can be endless, really.

6. We had seen Naruto kill someone, or at least with the intention of killing someone. Kakuzu. Although he didn't die, Naruto did want to kill him.

I thought that Sasuke not killing any one is maybe Kishi's way trying to 'redeem' Sasuke. It doesn't reflect upon Leaf Ninjas (at least I didn't think of it that way). Rather, just show that Sasuke is still human, and doesn't wish to kill the 'innocent'.



On the last page, Juugo's hand has a square C (or [ thing) shape. I wonder what that means.. I would be disappointed if it has no point other than character design.

Great comments! Still nice to read. I don't mind the shortness, as long as I get to read comments from you :D.

sahugani
April 16, 2007, 08:57 PM
i can't say i'm not disappointed that we didn't get to see the short-lived return of your all powerful review, but i agree that it is better saved for a more eventful chapter. at least you're still here doing your best with your time issues.

Cover - i don't think you can really compare Kishi and Kubo when it comes to color spreads. Kubo seemed to love doing those more than anything, which was a very good thing for my reviews (i'm hoping there will be another one waiting for me to use when i get back to them)

Comment 1 - as long as we've known him, Naruto has been very hopeful for the possibility of that happening, so ya you can't blame the guy. and in regards to his sleeping habits, i generally get up around that time (or later :p ) when i don't have shit to do that day, so once again, i can't blame him. About the injury though, you make a good point. Although it's no longer in a cast, it is still bandaged, so we're just seeing the extent of the Kyuubi's healing power. I mean Naruto is no Wolverine, so shattered bones and nerve connections still take longer than most of the other injuries he has shrugged off

Comment 2 - Jiraiya has been pretty non-existant for the most part in the post-timeskip, so i'm hoping he'll actually stick around for a bit as he and Tsunade deal with the defeat of the third Sannin

Comment 3 - I had been wondering for a while how Kishi was going to break the news to Naruto and while Naruto's reaction was pretty expected, i was concerned that the manner in which it was revealed could break the pace of the arc, giving me split opinions. On one hand i'm not a huge Sasuke fan and want to get back to Naruto (and hopefully some team 8), but on the other hand, i really like the direction Kishi is going with Sasuke's adventure here and want to see where it is going. I like that the issue was recognized but put off till after Sasuke's jouney progresses a bit more

Comment 4 - As i said, i really expected that kind of reaction from Naruto. While he is the only person who can connect with Sasuke on a deep emotional level, he's just way to simple minded to think about things like motives with any form of logic

Comment 5 - Karin's ability intrigues me as well. Since it's some kind of identification technique, Sasuke's use for her might be a way to locate Itachi without being in range for either Uchiha to use Sharingan. As for the cursed seal monsters, i really liked the image in sabyr's review about Davy Jones' crew from POTC2. If Kishi needed some quick ideas on deformed looks for his CS2 army, there are enough freaky looking things in the ocean to provide that kind of inspiration.

Comment 6 - Suigetsu's comment was pretty clearly intended to give us a glimmer of hope for the future. Especially after the hope being denied to Naruto early in the same chapter, it starts to make us believe again. Sasuke has had al this time to formulate his plan (presumably to beat Itachi) and it now seems that his plan my not include the self-sacrificing revenge he had intended before

Comment 7 - Ya i would have loved to see some action too, but if you want to see storyline time used instead for increased cinematics, then stick to Bleach (not that it's always a bad thing though). I think one of the main purposes for not showing the fight is because Kishi doesn't want to reveal Suigetsu's abilities yet (or the other two for that matter).

Comment 8 - i also got a little chuckle at Suigetsu's expense, but i guess Kishi doesn't want him interfering with a fantastic cursed seal duel which may be the reason he has been holding back on the cimematic scenes of fights. that would be kick ass

Comment 9 - I think that despite his psychotic rages, Juugo will turn out to be one of the most lovable characters in the series. We know that he feels regret for his actions while enraged as he came to Orochimaru for a cure. I wouldn't be surprised if after a big battle, he stoops down to help a little girl retrieve her teddy bear :amuse

Comment 10 - i can't wait to see a cursed seal battle, but doubt it will continue on too long. Just as Kishi has denied us the pleasure of seeing Suigetsu's combat style (and the reason for his freaky arm), he won't reveal Juugo's CS2 either. despite that, seeing CS1 Sasuke battle the CS1 of the seal's father will be absolutely stunning (so he better show it :rant )

juUnior
April 17, 2007, 02:55 AM
GK Yay for 50 review on Naruto xDxDxDxDxDxDxD

About cover, I feel the same... Kishi did awful job, and if, like You said, anybody comapred to Bleach covers, then this one is really dissapointing...


That wound sure is taking him a while to heal fully, even with the Kyuubi inside him.
Yeah, I also was wondering, what kyubi does now... Narut should be healed, but maybe it is really bad injury.. heh


Sometimes I get the feeling Naruto actually doesn't know Sasuke ALL that well...
I think that Naruto didnt knew Sasuke... sometime in the future maybe somebody will tell to his head, that Sasuke wants to kill Itachi.. because right now, to that moment, he didnt know that :x


And man, I guess Cursed Seal monsters weren't that rare after all.
Felt the same... CS was not so "rare"... and also that percents of living with cursed seal, when it was introdced to us... all is now a lie...


, but I wonder if Kishimoto is just trying to convince us that Naruto and Sakura's former teammate is still on the side of good.
I feel, thats the point of Kishimoto.


Kinda annoying that one second we see a whole army hissing and snarling at Team Sasuke, and the next page they're all on their backsides gasping for breath and mercy. And we didn't get to see any action at all.
Kinda reminds me of Hidan and Kakuzu, when foghting two-tails jinchuuriki.. it was not shown to not let us know their abilities. Maybe the same here.. we only now know, that they use swords :D


'Would you let me go? I can walk fine on my own.' What does that remind you of...? How about the next-to-last panel of this oldie? Heh. Same ol' Sasuke.
ehh nostalgia ^^


Hmmm, so we get our first real look at Juugo's full face. He seems to me more like a psychotic punk than anything else.
You know, I comapre him to Gaara very much (not Hidan via only tha art and pose), but to Gaara only.
First, Juugos pose face with psychic was similar to Gaaras when he was "bad", for example just looking at chuunin exam, or when Gaara wanted to kill Lee in hispotal and Narut and Shikamaru talked to him.. he was having the same im[ressions :D
Second, it looks like Gaara was alsways silent type, and when he went on killing, it was some rampage, and like Kankurou and Temari said, demon was burninig in him. Now look at Juugo, and speech of Karin about him.. his normal type, which when something occurs, goea rampage and transform or something into a demon only to kill.. similar? xD
Third, names written. The second letters are double and the same amount of letters:
Gaara = Juugo :D

CAnd I agree, chapter is prelude to some bigger things xD I hope action or more about CS xD

Robotic Red
April 17, 2007, 08:02 AM
Well GK, Sasuke did tell Orochimaru that "they aren't the ones I want to kill."

Saifi
April 17, 2007, 03:55 PM
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p1.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p2.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p3.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p4.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p5.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p6.jpg
http://i103.photobucket.com/albums/m143/Saifi_2006/p7.jpg

ooh and thx for the compliment on writing , i was actually looking fwd to seeing you do komments that way , like u said , but maybe if u have time u can do it next time
and i srry in advance for the overly slanted writing :-s

Gold Knight
April 18, 2007, 01:20 PM
Firstly of all, I gotta apologize for never getting around to everybody's responses from last week. I'll try better from here on.

Silvery - yeah, I always assumed Kyuubi could heal cellular damage though, 'cause Naruto sure has been through his share of serious injuries, and I'd think that would require at least some kind of cellular regeneration.

I'm happy that Sakura and Naruto are going to have to deal with the fact that Sasuke didn't need them after all. They seriously need to get new goals instead of just orienting on rescuing Sasuke all the time. He's no fragile princess, and they really do need to get better objectives for themselves.

I think Sasuke was probably just lying back in chapter 306, in order to fool Orochimaru in believing his loyalty so that he could learn more jutsus, although I'm sure in the back of his mind he was always feeling like he would probably surpass Orochimaru and he would fight back in the end.

Smelling chakra through smell? Heh... Karin'd be a good fit in the Akamaru litter then! Telepathy would be interesting, but I don't think she will be one. Otherwise she'd probably have showed it by now. But maybe she CAN sense particular kinds of chakra.

I don't think Naruto ever had the intention of killing Kakuzu, he just simply wanted to win, for Kakuzu to be lying on the ground at the end. But we HAVE seen Naruto strike to kill before - with Yuura, who was masquerading as Itachi at the time. I just meant that Kishimoto probably won't have him make a habit of dispatching all his opponents without mercy.

Wow, good eye to notice that on Juugo's hand. Didn't see it. o.o;

Thanks as always for coming by and replying to my Comments =)

sahugani - hey there dude =)

Naruto once said that he always needed just a good night's sleep in order to heal fully - but I guess that was mostly after just wearing himself out training. But nevertheless if you'll remember the Demon Brothers incident, where Naruto was nearly poisoned and had a nasty hand wound, it healed almost immediately. I just have to wonder that if the ShurikenRasengan really did this much damage, how the heck did Naruto manage to survive training to learn it in the first place?

I too hope Jiraiya will serve a little bigger role in the next arc. I'm personally hoping to learn more about how he obtains all his information.

I agree that the revelation of Sasuke's escape to Naruto and Sakura makes the story seem more slow-paced because they won't have to worry about Sasuke quite so much now. But I'm sure there'll still be drama coming our way.

I liked sabyr's allusion to the Davy Jones' crew from POTC2 too =)

Heh, sometimes it almost seems as though Bleach has too much action, and Naruto too little action. They definitely have different pacing.

Can't wait to learn more about Juugo myself =) Thanks for commenting!

juUnior -

You mentioned that the sudden defeat of all the CS monsters was reminiscent of Hidan's unshown defeats of Yuugo and Asuma's friend - that's how I feel too. I didn't mind it as much back then, but when it's done over and over I'd just rather not have it be part of the story at all.

I do agree that Juugo might be our next Gaara. But unlike Gaara, who meant to kill others, I think Juugo is a victim of his own curse. So the situation will probably be different. We'll see.

Thanks for stopping by again =)

Robotic Red - Indeed Sasuke said that, and yet it didn't stop him from wanting to kill Orochimaru, though. ;) I really don't have an issue with all these ninjas not killing anybody, it's a kid's story after all. But eh - remember what Aizen said in Bleach, he was so insanely powerful that it was tough for him to pull back at all without killing anybody. If Sasuke is that strong, it'd be pretty crazy, and quite frankly, hard to believe, if he could keep from killing everybody around him.

But then again, these were CS sealed people, I suppose...

Saifi -

Ha, a handwritten reply again ;) Well, here's my response =D

http://img441.imageshack.us/img441/4070/saifiresponsemj0.png

matsyes
April 19, 2007, 01:26 AM
First off i really like the handwritten comments its brilliant. But how did you put the scanned page in the post?

Well i can understand that is arm is injured but naruto has always been the type who if he can't practice with one thing will try to practice another technique or something.

Also i am yet confused about what tsunade and sakura kept going on about earlier how medical nijutsu can't heal him completely. Does it mean if he uses the jutsu a lot his arm will deteriorate like the brain deteriorates in alzhiemers or something?? But that doesn't make sence the kyubi fixed him when sasuke drove the chidori through him. so whats cell repair compared to that.

I completely agree that it is the editors wanting to show sasuke's not a killer after all he is a very influential character. But it doesn't make sense after all the guy is going to kill his brother and what more terrible message can u send then that!! I hope this trend does not continue and they show leaf ninja kill ppl after all their NINJAS!!

Well next chapter i hope they finally show naruto healed and some action from sasuke and not him just holding his sword above a vanquished enemy.

kiddo7
April 19, 2007, 02:14 PM
Once again I do not have a lot to say. But there are a few things I would like to get of my chest.

First of all @Saifi: You have a very beautiful handwriting, it was a most pleasing change of pace reading your responce (and later GK's too).

Now about the WTF-ness of Orochimaru's defeat. I believe that Jiraiya, Tsunade, and probably Shizune also already heard the news before telling Naruto and Sakura. In other words, What we saw was not their initial reaction to the news but rather how they where feeling after they have somewhat come to terms with the news. Furthermore, I think any amount of WTF-ness would be suppressed by worry, or puzzlement over Sasuke's potential next step. I mean think about it Jiraiya had his spies set up and Tsunade and him both knew Oro pretty well they could at least to some degree predict how he would think or react to given cases and I am going to bet they kind knew about where to look for him. Now with sasuke they have nothing at all and they do not know how he thinks all they know is that he is strong and that he went off on his own, there is much to be considered...

Now on to my next and final point; The CS2 hoard.
This I am entirely pulling out of my ass, but there is some logic behind it, check this out.

I do not think that the pages of this chapter suggest that CS2 is common in Naruto's world nor do I believe that it should be disregarded as being powerless.

It was said that few survive the curse seal, I do not think this meant that people actually die from it but rather they go entirely crazy their mind "dies" they become a danger to them selves and anyone around them. Next we know that Orochimaru was an elitists. He would routinely gather up anyone who looked somewhat strong and have them battle it out so that he could take whoever came out on top. I am beginning to think that with CS there is a similar story. Would it not seem logical that only a few are strong enough to keep their minds about after getting the seal? Would it be a stretch to conjecture that it is only these who can stand up to it mentally that actually gain any significant boost in fighting power? My guess is that the ones holed up at this base are all failed attempts they are either mindless beasts of instinct or the curse seal did not actually enhance them a lot The sound five would bee the exception, the few that stood out. That is why Orochimaru took them with him.
Then of course you might ask why Juugo was not one of the sound five? Since he is the source he must be the strongest right?
Well not necessarily, and besides there are other reasons why Orochimaru would want him safely locked up.
One: He actually does not want his power. He wants to be "cured"
Two: He is pretty much crazy. with his mind in that state he would not be much use to Orochimaru.
Three: He is the source! If he dies, no more curse seal for anyone.

hmm...
Guess this post became a lot longer that I thought it would. How did that happen. I swear, all this where just two small thoughts in my mind, they where nowhere near this long. Anyway, can't wait for the next chapter.