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View Full Version : Review Gold Knight's Ten Comments Special (Naruto Volume 41) [Incomplete]



Gold Knight
October 23, 2007, 05:25 AM
http://img145.imageshack.us/img145/5923/headerao9.png
"Angel" Konan, once again by the spectacular graphic artist Amaretti.

Hey, guys. How's it going?

Well, I had some time on my hand last week, so I was able to work on this review a bit earlier than usual. Let me know if doing half of a volume review at a time is more convenient for you guys or not. I'm going to try my best to do them like this from now on... it's certainly easier to write about only five chapters at a time than all of it at once.

Just keep in mind that once the volume is complete (in four weeks or so from now) to come back here a week afterwards because the review should be complete as well then. Also, I might add to some of my observations for previous chapters with blue text... so check for these too!

One final note about the future of these reviews (ie. news on my life) - Graduate school's just around the corner for me, so I may be attending classes again by the next time I write a review for the next volume. But from all indications, and this is the good news, I'll still be able to have time to write further reviews because I should still have a lot of free time between classes.

However, and there is still a chance of this happening - if I still happen to disappear for a looooooong time, at least you know what to blame it on now! So, if you are an aspiring reviewer, be sure to keep in practice around here! You never know when you'll be the only one here for a while. :p

Once again, many thanks to Kylara, our translators, and Japflap for all their great work in bringing us a great Naruto chapter every week, and all the artists as well for coloring some great stuff this time around.

Well, that was a short introduction, wasn't it? Guess it's time for the review. :) Feel free to make any observations of your own as always, of course.


* * * Gold Knight's Ten Comments on Naruto Volume 41 * * *
* Note: This is only half of the current volume's review. The last five "Comments" will be added at a later point. :)

370: 胸騒ぎ
1. A Premonition

http://img150.imageshack.us/img150/3325/frame01uf0.png

Aha, so that was the deal. The Toad Sage catches the flies, and lets Ibiki feed on them for the most part. Who else but the unquestioned master of interrogation? No wonder Jiraiya extracted so much information from the Akatsuki! Good ol' Ibiki. Do you reckon he's still pissed about Asuma? We never did see Kakuzu's dealer after that - hmm, I guess accidents will happen.

Heh, even though Jiraiya didn't get the information he wanted from the other guy, though, Ero-Sennin has also never, NEVER seemed more intimidating than when he was evilly grinning here and saying, "Now tell me everything you know. Or you'll be eating flies for the rest of your life!" Kishimoto actually did a great job of turning what was initially a lame-seeming technique into something of a relatively frightening prospect here!

Moving on to the major topic of the chapter... which is, of course, Naruto's seal and its "key," which obviously took on an even more of a material shape than we all thought in the form of a living and talking amphibian "Scroll" with an attitude! (Just when I thought Naruto couldn't get any weirder.) There's a lot of stuff to cover here, so let me just take a deep breath first. .....Ok, ready? Here goes.

Well, according to what we've learned so far in the series, there's no question that Minato AKA Yondaime - Naruto's daddy - had really big plans for his kid. We already knew back at the beginning of the story that the Fourth Hokage had intended for Naruto to be a savior (http://img263.imageshack.us/img263/4837/naruto2013nh9.jpg) for the Leaf.

Despite Naruto being resented by just nearly everybody in the village for being the container of the dreaded Nine-Tails, he wasn't exiled or put in a prison, nor was he put through rigorous training and brainwashing therapy, as many other villages could have done (especially the Mist, and perhaps the Cloud, as well). That would have been against Yondaime's wishes... as Naruto's growth would have certainly been more than a bit stunted in any of these cases. (Not that it wasn't, but even more so, at least.)

Instead, while Naruto may still have been treated with contempt, he was still allowed the freedom to live as an orphan child that could make his own choices, even as far as being allowed entry into the Ninja Academy. Minato and Sandaime wanted Naruto to at least have the chance to grow to love the village on his own and surpass everybody's expectations.

Now we have even more reason to understand why Yondy may have wanted Naruto to grow normally... that is, as normal as possible, anyway, for a kid in his circumstances.

Okay, please bear with me here, I'm about to go off on a bit of a discourse. I think we mostly suspected, early on in the series, that Minato's seal was made primarily to try to contain the Kyuubi from taking control of Naruto and to never let it emerge again, and that was all.

However, when Sasuke apparently died against Haku, the seal started breaking almost by itself due to Naruto's emotional state, and the Kyuubi leaked out and was able to take control of Naruto enough to change his appearance, strength, and speed.

Yet, while Kakashi obviously knew about the Kyuubi having a bit of a presence (http://img88.imageshack.us/img88/740/naruto28005dn6.jpg) at that fight, and probably reported the situation, Naruto's seal was still apparently left alone in its flawed condition. Nothing done about it at all, not even an investigation!

In fact, Orochimaru, of all people, was the only one to ever put a conker on the Kyuubi's chakra (http://img165.imageshack.us/img165/2072/naruto4907ts2.jpg) in Part One, by forcibly placing an additional seal on Naruto's stomach as so to repress it even further and render him less of a threat. Yet Sandaime never did such an additional seal, nor did he ever seem that concerned about the Kyuubi chakra, at least until the Chuunin Exams, (http://img134.imageshack.us/img134/2273/naruto12417xn7.png) after Jiraiya had removed Oro's seal himself and trained Naruto to control his chakra better for use in his classic battle against Neji. Even there, though, Sandaime seemed to think of it as something that would have happened eventually, just not so soon.

When Jiraiya had first taken up Naruto as his pupil, too, we actually did get to see the inside of Naruto's mind - and the "prison" of the Kyuubi - and it did still seem relatively secure. You could even see the seal itself, still in place and undamaged, right on the gates. (http://img341.imageshack.us/img341/890/naruto11514xy1.jpg) So I thought maybe at that point Jiraiya improved on the seal, so now that only with Naruto's willpower could he open these gates slightly in order to draw out the Kyuubi's chakra, but never for long. I thought he was actually going against Minato's wishes a little bit, as evidenced by his mental apology in this page. (http://img521.imageshack.us/img521/24/naruto11405gc4.jpg) (Though, maybe he was just apologizing in advance for throwing Naruto off the cliff, heh.)

With this chapter, we now know that Jiraiya had nothing to do with the seal, and that it was all Minato, instead. There had been a secret key all along, being kept safe for Naruto to inherit someday from Minato through Jiraiya. The gift - a means of finally drawing out all that powerful chakra gave Naruto the possibility that he could, one day, be able to control it all to use for some heroic purpose.

What a dad, huh?

So it's seemingly obvious now that Minato must have meant for the Nine-Tails' chakra to be able to leak, slightly, as to have Naruto's body slowly get used to controlling that chakra. And Jiraiya was simply trying to train Naruto to the point where he could control all of it that much better. Especially during the timeskip.

EDIT: And it's become even more obvious! Thanks Kaylee!

It seems obvious, because we actually have learned it before (and I had completely forgotten about it until reading your review). Back when Jiraiya first meets Naruto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/91/11/), Jiraiya notices that Naruto's seal is set up so that some of the Kyuubi's chakra will leak through to combine with Naruto's.

As for the making of the seal itself, Minato had evidently thought it out - he wasn't just going to put a monster into his son's belly without taking some precautionary measures.

According to Jiraiya, Minato must have figured that by stripping the Kyuubi's chakra of its "YIN" aspect - apparently the more undesirable aspect of the Kyuubi's being that was sacrificed to the Death God - a human container would then have the opportunity to eventually more easily control the rest of the "YANG" chakra, as long as he was given a chance to actually learn how to use it without dying in the process.

(At least, that's how I finally saw it anyway, after numerous re-reads. Y'all are welcome to disagree with me if you want to. ^^ )

Anyway, the Kyuubi must have been a real beast, when its original chakra was all together. We've already seen the destructive properties of a Kyuubified Naruto - now just imagine it multiplied by five, at least. No wonder the Nine-Tails must have caused such widespread destruction whenever it appeared. It's amazing the Kyuubi didn't blow up the world when it still lived. Maybe he could have - but he didn't want to be destroyed too in the process!

And boy, Minato must have had tons of faith in his son. This was a kid that he never lived long enough to see grow, never seeing how his temperament might have been like, and all that. He must have been trusting enough that somebody of his own blood would have possessed the strength, gentleness, and self-discipline necessary to have been able to contain the Kyuubi on his own and to be able to use it for good. It's a lucky thing that Naruto wasn't given the key already, though, he would have already been lost by now. He definitely hasn't shown an aptitude for controlling the chakra at all. Yet!

Hopefully, someday, when Naruto does inherit this key, he'll be at least understanding enough to know that he needs plenty, and I mean PLENTY, of self-training, before he's ever able to control it fully without sealing his own doom! (Did I just make a pun...? Sorry, sorry.)

And now we know, I suppose, why Jiraiya concentrated so much on trying to help Naruto with his "red chakra" over the last two and half years. That training may not borne any real fruit yet, but you know, it may still have very significant impact on the story soon enough! I like that VERY much. I enjoy the prospect that Naruto's training exercises with Jiraiya might not have been a complete waste of time, after all. Is the best still yet to come...?

But wait, there's still more that we learned in this chapter. We, of course, also got our "Premonition" of the chapter, as per the title - we found out that Uchiha Madara was able to command the Kyuubi! No wonder the Nine-Tails seemed to have a such strong distaste for Sasuke's ancestor. He likely didn't enjoy being on a leash, after all.

Anyway, this revelation created even more questions, though. Mostly importantly, how and why. And maybe a little who is Tobi, really.

How did Madara gain such mastery over the Kyuubi, and why did he want to use the Kyuubi? And why did he rebel against Konohagakure in the first place, if he did indeed use it on his village? He must have had some bad history with Shodai Hokage!

As for the latter question, I still think Tobi isn't Madara. Who in his right mind would sit on the head of a statue made in his honor, cackling? Though Tobi being in his right mind at this point is still certainly debatable.

By his own admittance, though, he possessed the "power of Madara." Even if the translators insist he was calling himself Madara, I still wonder if Kishimoto didn't intend for that line to be a bit vague. Obviously, Jiraiya's words here were highly indicative that Tobi will be able to control the Kyuubi when the time comes. (That's a scary thought for Naruto.) Did Tobi then mean that he could control the Kyuubi, just as Madara did, therefore he could be said to have the same powers?

Ah, sure, he does appear to have the Sharingan, so he does appear to be a Uchiha. I'll confess that my Danzou theory in the last review had all kinds of holes in it, so here's a new and probably better theory that I've come to believe in the last few weeks.

I've come to suspect now that Tobi is actually Uchiha Shisui, otherwise known as Itachi's "best friend" that apparently "drowned" and left a suicide note. (http://img90.imageshack.us/img90/8008/narutoch222p04zt2.png) We'll see if there's any truth to this though, but for now, let's move on to the next chapter. If you would like to vote on who you think Tobi is, though, and discuss it further, feel free to head over to my Ask Me thread and vote in the poll there. (http://mangahelpers.com/forums/showpost.php?p=574375&postcount=1866) :)

Good chapter, even if it was somewhat confusing!

Rating: 4.5/5


371: 旧知...!!
2. An Old Friend...!!

http://img512.imageshack.us/img512/3581/frame02sc7.png

So, did Sasuke know that Naruto was actually just a bunshin, or did he actually try to kill him there? What do you think?

I'd like to believe that he was so wrapped up in his "revenge lust" that he didn't even bother to think about Naruto's life at that point, he just wanted to get through him, plain and simple. Whether his former comrade was real or not.

That would indicate that he still has a bit of a dark side that's definitely coming out right now after he had just seen his own brother - the very goal of his vengeance. Is Sasuke about to fall even further into darkness?

We also got our first glimpse of Pain's new body in this chapter that arose from the second pod. Apparently, this must be some brother of Deidara's, because they certainly look similar.

When Konan brought the news of Jiraiya's presence to Pain, I found their subsequent conversation pretty interesting, as well! First of all, of course, the revelation that Jiraiya was once a mentor to them both was pretty intriguing. But, while Pain's always seemed more human than most of the other Akatsuki to me (especially in his cynical humor), here he was actually emotionally so!

He just stood there, seemingly dazed, as he was obviously recalling all the memories that he had with his former sensei. One would almost think he was torn between whether to bake his old friend a welcoming cake or kill him dead on the spot.

Konan, while she seemed to be able to mask her emotions better, was obviously even more shaken. She was so hesistant and unsure about what to do that she ended up having to actually ask Pain what their next course of action was. Then when Pain responded that they were to kill him, Konan actually said that she could leave it to him. No, she definitely didn't want to battle her old teacher.

But of course, Pain saw right through her and didn't want her to become all sentimental on him, so he did tell her to kill him if she got a chance. Can't have an emotional kunochi on one's hands, after all, right?

This was definitely a refreshing change from all the other cold, emotionless, or merciless Akatsuki that we've seen so far. These guys actually act human. Almost even more so than when Sasori realized his grandmother was coming to give him a good spanking!

And, finally, we got some action!

To recap, Konan used her nifty "origami" ability to blind Jiraiya's captive, thinking it was actually a henge. Then she formed a paper lance in order to try to kill him with it.

I hadn't thought about Konan's abilities too much to that point, but this proved that she was indeed deadly with her control of paper. Forget papercuts. These are nothing. Being blinded by paper, on the other hand... just imagine all the openings that'd leave! If that had been any normal ninja, he would have been dead before you could have said "Crom!" (If you got the reference, have a cookie.)

Luckily, though, Jiraiya wasn't just any bum off the streets. Taking a hint from the Nara family, he had actually used his captive's shadow to his own advantage - by hiding in it. How he did that, I have no idea, but Konan referred it to as "Toad-Silhouette Control Technique." Now, I have two problems with that.

1) Why would the toads even have any techniques associated with shadows?

2) If Konan already knew about this technique, why didn't she suspect it when she knew she was fighting her old mentor? Did her memory just become fuzzy? But there was that tell-tale scroll of Jiraiya showing up in the shadow.

You'd almost suspect, especially given her earlier hesitation, that she knew, and let Jiraiya off the hook. And he threw oil up on her. Nice.

And figures, the first thing Jiraiya does upon seeing one of his old female students for the first time in nearly twenty years, was to ogle her! What else?

Rating: 5/5


372: 泣いている国!!
3. A Crying Country!!

http://img90.imageshack.us/img90/5353/frame03hv3.png

Ever noticed all the analogies lately that Kishimoto's been writing?

"I always thought you were dead, but all this time, you were just a bunch of papers scattered in the wind..."
"Ahh... you're God's angel..."
"I must kill you. That is the will of God."

Heh. Sometimes I wonder if Kishimoto's getting a bit too carried away with all that poetic writing. He must have really been proud of himself after he compared Sasuke to a hawk (http://img518.imageshack.us/img518/5835/ch344ukpage1415eg5.png), too, because he commented on that again, via Tobi, just last chapter. (http://img340.imageshack.us/img340/6123/ch371ukpage02sf1.png) Not that I really mind that, but I just found it amusing. :XD

Anyway, Konan's "angelic" look was truly stunning in this chapter, though. I don't often comment on Kishimoto's art (mostly because I'd probably always be rambling about how good it is - I did that once for my Chapter 341 review (http://mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8286) - and so many people already agree it's great, anyway!) but this time, I just have to.

Even when not colored, this double-spread looked magnificent. And when colored by the likes of Amaretti... oh man. Now you're talkin' art, pure and simple.

Though I just have to comment on what I think Kishimoto might have been inspired by in drawing Konan like an angel, and especially after she shed all these "feathers" to use them as lethal weapons. That is, if he read American comics at all, but who hasn't tried X-Men? How about this X-Man? Archangel. (http://img296.imageshack.us/img296/3491/xf024pg19ll6.jpg)

Hey, it's possible. But I won't hold it against Kishimoto if he purposely recycled that idea, Archangel was an awesome character!

Then Jiraiya went and threw oil up on her, as already mentioned last chapter. Eew. Well, whatever gets the job done. Konan certainly found herself in quite the hairy situation, though, after Jiraiya unleashes the amazing growing power of his hair.

(By the way, I should have expected all of Jiraiya's hair techniques after seeing how he defended himself against Orochimaru with porcupine hair (http://img523.imageshack.us/img523/3397/narutoc16612wv6.png) - somehow, I didn't, ha!)

Did you guys notice that when Jiraiya said the rumors that Konan's two companions were dead must have all been lies, she looked slightly sad? I wonder if that's a hint that one of them, at least, did die. Well, I'm getting ahead of myself here...

So we got some pretty cool flashbacks here - our biggest glimpse into Jiraiya's former life as a young Kohana shinobi so far! You know, I'm beginning to think that these flashbacks aren't omens that he's going to die, after all - they're just there to give a glimpse into Pain's life and hint at why he might have become the leader of the Akatsuki. But it might just be wishful thinking...

I found it clever of Kishimoto to initially point all the signs at Yahiko, the spiky-haired kid, as the future Pain. His face was the first one we saw after Jiraiya said, "Then Pain... must be him." And Yahiko did strongly resemble the first adult body we saw Pain using when he came out of the shadows. (So much for my theories that Pain must be related to Naruto, though, in that case.)

I've always found the possible dynamics of the Legendary Sannin pretty interesting, so I was pretty pleased to see Tsunade and Orochimaru also in the flashback, and how they each reacted to the Rain orphans' plea for some ninjutsu training. Orochimaru's response, I don't think anybody was surprised by that, but Tsunade - well, she definitely isn't one for mothering, even with her healing abilities. She was visibly upset that Jiraiya decided to take them with him.

Well, not that I blame her. These were children of an enemy nation. Jiraiya's more of a softy than I ever realized - and I don't think anybody would argue that now.

In a way, Yahiko was remarkably more practical than Jiraiya in their difference of opinion on the possibility of peace. Almost reminds one of the Middle East peace talks that always seem to break down. Jiraiya's a dreamer - he hopes for peace and tranquility between all nations. Yahiko's the realist - he has less faith in people than that, and he's probably right - there'll always be wars as long as one nation is stronger than the other.

In accepting them for training, he was more or less taking pity on the Rain country for not being as able to defend themselves against foreign powers as they could have, and especially these kids. Even at the possible expense of his own country. What a softy, huh?

Still, I somehow did expect that kind of reaction from him. He also, probably, took pity on Naruto and agreed to train him even though he knew Naruto was a bit too obsessed about bringing Sasuke back. :amuse

Rating: 4.5/5


373: 師弟時代...!!
4. The Student-and-Teacher Era...!!

http://img219.imageshack.us/img219/5994/frame04iy1.png

First off, of course we know now that Nagato would be the future Pain - or is he? At first, I thought that maybe Kishimoto might be fooling us all, and that Yahiko might actually have inherited Nagato's abilities, a la Kakashi and Obito. But all the evidence in this chapter certainly seems to point at Nagato. I'll get to all that in a bit...

About the Rinnegan. Though we now know that it possessed the ability to do all forms of ninjutsu, I'm going to have to say that there was probably a misunderstanding from one of the translations we had here.

Instead of "most powerful" doujutsu, it could also be said to be "most venerable." This personally makes more sense to me, because if Nagato's ancestor was the one to have created modern ninjutsu, of course the Rinnegan would have been incredibly respectable.

Anyway, I have to say that I'm pretty pleased to see that a new challenger to the Sharingan has finally appeared. Whereas the Sharingan only copied the jutsus, the Rinnegan actually gave a personal ability to be able to manipulate any form of jutsu, regardless of whether the owner was naturally more better at one element than the other. I'm looking forward to more from the Rinnegan.

About the "Sage of the Six Paths." More Buddhist stuff, huh? I think it's already been widely discussed by now, but I might as well throw in my own thoughts. By the way, since the Six Paths of Buddhist fame are doubtless roads that one does not want to travel if they were trying to achieve enlightenment, this Sage must have been a terror to be known as that!

Now, about how the Six Paths might pertain to Pain himself - since we saw six bodies in Pain's chamber, I do think now that the real Pain must be one of the six bodies now, instead of some other body in a distant room - as I first thought.

So which one is the real Pain? Or rather, Nagato, in the possibility that Pain might actually be Yahiko.

I do believe now that the first body is an adult Yahiko - and the description of the first path as "hell, intense suffering, and despair" could definitely apply to how Nagato might have felt if he had failed to protect Yahiko. To him, Yahiko had become the embodiment of hell and suffering.

In the case Yahiko really is Pain, and Nagato is the dead companion, it'd probably be no difference, besides it being more of a matter of self-reflection. If either did fail to protect the other, he'd certainly have suffered a crushing blow - just as Naruto would if he ever loses Sasuke. Young Yahiko did resemble Naruto very strongly on that point as well in appearance. And Nagato, he did seem to take the loss of his family the hardest, so losing his best friend would probably have been just as terrible to him.

So that leaves five more paths for Nagato himself - (2) hunger, (3) animality, (4) anger, (5) humanity, and (6) heaven.

Ordinarily, I'd have said "heaven," but since the sixth body we saw definitely did not seem to be of Nagato's build - unless he's been eating a whole lot of biscuits since we saw him last! - I'm going to say "humanity," the fifth path, is Nagato's body.

In the description of "humanity," it's stated that it aims for temporary balance and tranquility. After what we learned in the next chapter about Pain's goals, that definitely seems to be what he is trying to do in general. (I'll talk more about that next chapter.) In which case, it's a strong argument that Nagato is indeed Pain. Right?

Of course, all this is really assuming that Kishimoto is going by the same Six Paths of Buddhist fame. There's a really, really big possibility that he might make them something entirely different. He's been known to take writer's license with such things in the past, especially when Chinese mythology and the tailed monsters were concerned - this might not be any different. But hey, it's fun to speculate.

Anyway, back to the flashback! So Jiraiya ends up becoming their sensei and he has a very personal and touching conversation with Nagato, where he comforts the kid on what he did to the dead nin out of self-defense, and emphasizes that he did it for a good reason: protecting his friends.

He also apparently gave the speech that would seemingly spur on the twisted "growth" of Pain into a self-proclaimed "god," out of a desire to make everybody feel the same pain that he did, to have everybody else be more "kind" to each other as a result. Oops. (This is the best argument yet that Nagato is Pain.)

Here, I might need to remind people, since I still see Pein being used here, that Pain's name is just so obviously Pain, not Pein, judging by Nagato's line here, "I just wanna protect them, no matter what kind of pain I have go through." It's just a nickname in the end, anyway. So don't worry about how awkward it sounds as a name.

We soon see 'em all growing insanely powerful, even managing to beat one of the Ero-Sennin's bunshins. At that point, Jiraiya decides he's done enough for them and says his good-byes to them.

Now, is it just me, or did you also definitely sense some resentment from Konan and Pain after the flashbacks in how they referred to Jiraiya as an "outsider" who knew "nothing about what happened to them?"

Looks like Jiraiya did make a big boo-boo by leaving them and not staying in touch with them. And training them in the first place. Ah well. Life and learn and all that jazz. I haven't lost my respect for Jiraiya - he was kind to these kids, perhaps too kind, but he did what he had to do to ensure that they would survive, and probably overdid it.

But by the same token, if he had let ol' Orochimaru have his way with them, he wouldn't have been able to live with himself, that's for certain. Jiraiya did what he had to do, but he didn't forget his country. And it was too obvious that Yahiko intended all along to stay behind as a protector of the Rain, so he couldn't just have taken these kids back home with him.

And Jiraiya certainly couldn't have foreseen any of them having anything to do with the most infamous criminal organization in the whole world!

Good story, I actually liked it.

Rating: 4.5/5


374: 神への成長!!
5. Growth Into a God!!

http://img140.imageshack.us/img140/4364/frame05rx5.png

In this one, we sure got a lot of action right off the bat, and then a whole lot of talking.

First, Pain uses his "crab summoning" to wash Konan away from Jiraiya's oil, and distracts him enough that Konan could escape safely.

Jiraiya then retaliates with a technique called Ranji Shigami no Jutsu - "Raging Lion's Mane Technique," which basically consists of his hair growing like wildfire to apparently banish the crab back to wherever it came from, and to tie Pain up - or what turned out to be a bunshin of him, anyway.

Well, that technique is going to be fun for all these Naruto video game developers to incorporate into their games, if nothing else. That's really going to look so impressive in a fighting game - Jiraiya with his hair flying in all directions! Perfect for a guy who likes to have so many dramatic poses. I already can't wait to see what an Orochimaru vs Jiraiya square-off looks like in the next one!

Anyway, upon being asked about Yahiko, Pain seems to recall him and his apparent death in a dismissive way, which makes Jiraiya realize that if it is Nagato, it's not the same one he once knew.

And since Pain does clearly seem to be reflecting on what Jiraiya told little Nagato to do - namely "growing up" and "suffering pain" - I think it's no longer any doubt that Pain is Nagato at this point.

Pain, or Nagato, here, also seems to confirm that he is indeed seeking to "conquer the world" - something he had told the Akatsuki before. This time, he adds a new dimension to that plan, though. Instead of going over how he would simply build up an army of mercenaries that all nations would be dependent on, he goes into his own motive for doing such a thing more keenly.

He would use the combination of all the bijuu as a "nuclear weapon" - partially to cause widespread chaos that would result in what he hoped to be mutual unity and peace - but also to stifle any more devastating wars.

Well, I can't blame Kishimoto. Japan to date has been the only nation to suffer the devastating side-effects of a nuclear bomb, so I'm pretty sure they've been reeling ever since from that. It also effectively ended World War II for good. And despite the aftermath, which was the Cold War, if America had remained the only country to have nuclear weapons (the Soviet Union would come up with their own), who knows what the world would have become by now? America would probably have had far, far more power and control.

So, without any opposition of any kind like what America had, Pain really could have the world in his hands with such a nuclear weapon. He could force everybody to live in peace. But to become what he truly considered a "god," eternally in control of this weapon, he'd also have to be immortal. No wonder he's gotten together with so many others who are trying to be immortal, huh?

The problem, though - who really wants to go through that kind of pain? What Pain is threatening means potentially tens of thousands of people could die, whole villages and towns would be razed, the landscape would be dramatically changed, and he'd really make everybody miserable. He's clearly overdoing the whole shebang, and he doesn't even realize it. America would likely not have made any friends if they had constantly bombarded the world with nuclear explosions.

What Pain is doing is actually self-defeating to himself and could result in the total doom of his own country. Nothing unites people more than a common enemy.

No wonder Jiraiya called him a comedian. He's definitely right there that the fighting would only escalate. Nagato's really not thinking this through, and it's also so obvious that Kishimoto is pretty much setting up this scenario: a certain somebody is probably going to end up converting him over to the Church of Naruto at some point!

At least it still makes for an interesting conflict, anyway. Pain's a much more global threat than any other that Naruto's ever fought.

Rating: 4/5

Quick Thoughts on Chapter 375:

I'm definitely guessing that each of the six bodies possesses total domination over a certain kind of ninjutsu, and Pain's current body is that of summoning. Since he's using it without doing anything else, and he's able to summon just about anything, it seems. Whereas his first body, "Yahiko," apparently can control any kind of water-based jutsu (giving even more evidence that it is Yahiko, since we saw him doing suiton jutsus in the flashback.) The question is, with the Rinnegan, why does he have to do that? I really don't have a clue on that though. We'll have to wait for more chapters will tell us the answer.

As for Jiraiya's "Hermit mode," more stuff for the video games to adapt from the manga, it seems to me. It sort of looks lame to me, but hopefully Kishimoto will prove me wrong, as he did with the earlier "toad transformation" jutsu. ;)

Hope you enjoyed!

OVERALL VOLUME RATING: To be determined later. Check back in a few weeks from now!

Credits:

All Scanlations used in this review were by Japflap.

Fan Colorings used in Images:
Chapter 370 Konan Cover by Dynamic Dragon
Chapter 371 Naruto Cover by Dralaquan - one of the best Naruto colorings so far.
Chapter 372 Page 4-5 Konan by Amaretti (also used for the header) - beautiful work!
Chapter 373 Jiraiya Cover by Dralaquan

matsyes
October 23, 2007, 11:58 AM
One thing that has to be observed though i dont know its significance is that, It was prolly due to yondi's orders that nobody knows Naruto his is son. The only reason I can think of this dissassociation is thta yondi did not want naruto to attract anymore attention than he allready would due to the kyuubi. Also possibly there is a threat in the narutoverse that yondi is well aware of and doesn't want any enemies targetting naruto. Who knows it could come to some blodline thing though thtat is speculation at best.

Also I like your point that Jiraiya trained naruto to control the kyuubi that makes quite a bit of sense considering recent chapters. But why hasn't anyone told naruto about this as he is now listening to Yamato abt not relying on kyuubi chakra which is what is part of the great plan for him.

If tobi is uchiha shisui then are u totally supporting the theory that itachi is a good guy ?? Also if Itachi is a good guy why would he tell his brother to kill his best friend to get MS, if that is not the path he used to get MS. Also how did he get MS then?

That is a very good observation on how pain and konan are both so shaken by jiraiya's presence and how konan does not even want to fight him. I think ur right on the mark there. What I wonder is the conclusion of a fight between such reluctant opponents going to be. Or is pain going to spare jiraiya on a whim ;). The more I see of him the more he reminds me of sasuke. Except sasuke is obssesed with revenge while he's obsessed with pain.

Jiraiya oogling at konan was just a perfect way to end the chapter. Its things like thes that make me think jiraiya is not gonna get killed after all.

The arch angel observation is brilliant!!! And finding the comic with the exact same pose with the blades flying is really good!! A fight between oro and jiraiya will be interesting , Oro having his snakes weave around and jiraiya having his hair weave around. It'll make for a good fight :D.

The dynamics of the legendary sanin are interesting. I have always wondered why jiraiya and oro would ever get along. Oro is just plain evil, He has almost in no flash back showed any sign of humanity. The closest he comes to that is in the flashback with the white snake. Sasuke at least showed signs of behaviour as a normal human being. Infact if his family hadn't been killed in that manner sasuke prolly would not have been a crazy avenger but been a quite stable guy and has been shown to care for his teammates before he deserted them. Oro on the other hand as no driving emotional factor like sasuke but yet chose a much darker path. I am really interested in that story.

I think jiraiya made a real error in not taking the orphans to konha. Thats what he should have done. Also he finds a ninja with the rinnengan becomes a father figure to him and yet does not entice him to konha is shocking!! I thought that villages were always trying to get stronger clans and families and now he has the chance to get back a real strong ninja and he drops it. The worst part is that it would have been a kindness to the orphans given them a home again. Also I don't think yahiko would have protested that much. I think it was a real wasted chance on jiraiya and very impractical.

I found the conversation between pain and jiraiya very nice. Especially when he calls him a comedian. Now thats something pain prolly doesn't hear everyday :D. But kishi is over setting pain for an encounter with naruto. But how will naruto ever get along with pain is a mystery especiall if jiraiya is killed by him.

Also are the words for pain in japaneese and english same or similar? Or is it that kishi has used the english word pain as a name for him and written it phonetically in japaneese. Something like maito gai?

ornis
October 23, 2007, 12:07 PM
Excellent synopsis, there, GK!

Quick question: (Let's say, in regards to the elements) do you see Yin/Yang as a fundamental essence? Not that it would be a surprising element, but I really can't take it as the sixth one, unless for an simple reason. Kishi can make it happen, with all of the Yin/Yang referencing... Iwanin's trans (http://http://mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20195) has me on this point.

I mostly think Yin/Yang is at the basis of each element as all elements depend on one another to be defined. The idea involves a balance found by examining three consecutive elements of the known elemental system (includes just five):

Fuuton beats Raiton; Raiton beats Doton

The only single element that Doton assuredly loses to is the only single element that Fuuton assuredly overcomes: Raiton. So, Doton and Fuuton depend on Raiton to mediate the balance between one element's loss and the other one's gain. It helps define them. Yin/Yang is naturally there in that sense.

I will be back >.>

chvis002
October 23, 2007, 12:59 PM
Great review as always, can't wait for the whole volume version. :thumbs

I so hope that this battle won't turn in to some summoning jutsu technique contest, cuz that would only be too lame (and Jiraiyas "power up" doesn't make it any better, but atleast he started right away). My guess why Pain is only using summons is of sentmental purposes only, to beat his master in what he does best to show off his superiority and make us reader fear the worst. Btw, how could he do bunshin no jutsu if he only could do summonings?

kaylee
October 23, 2007, 01:18 PM
Thanks for the review, GK!! It was almost more entertaining to read than the chapters themselves, and definitely more enlightening. :D




Aha, so that was the deal. The Toad Sage catches the flies, and lets Ibiki feed on them for the most part. Who else but the unquestioned master of interrogation? No wonder Jiraiya extracted so much information from the Akatsuki!


Yeah, it's a pretty ingenious technique -- almost impossible for their prisoners to be intercepted or recaptured on their way back to Konoha. I wonder what Ibiki does with these guys after he's finished interrogating them though. Seems like keeping them in prison or killing them would start an international incident, especially since Konoha's not at war with Amegakure. But whatever, I'm sure Konoha has enough problems without worrying about that.



Now we have even more reason to understand why Yondy may have wanted Naruto to grow normally... that is, as normal as possible, anyway, for a kid in his circumstances.


Regarding your thoughts on Naruto's upbringing, it was certainly Minato's intention for Naruto to be regarded as a hero, not as an outcast. But I don't understand why he would have wanted his son to grow up with basically no training until he entered the academy. It's possible he wanted Naruto to be able to make his own choice about whether to be a ninja at all, but he must have known that without proper training, Naruto would be at a huge risk to be overwhelmed by the Kyuubi's chakra when his emotions got the best of him.

As you said, Yondaime placed a HUGE amount of faith in his son making the right choices.



So it's seemingly obvious now that Minato must have meant for the Nine-Tails' chakra to be able to leak, slightly, as to have Naruto's body slowly get used to controlling that chakra. And Jiraiya was simply trying to train Naruto to the point where he could control all of it that much better. Especially during the timeskip.


It seems obvious, because we actually have learned it before (and I had completely forgotten about it until reading your review). Back when Jiraiya first meets Naruto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/91/11/), Jiraiya notices that Naruto's seal is set up so that some of the Kyuubi's chakra will leak through to combine with Naruto's.

About Naruto's 2.5-year training with Jiraiya, I agree that Jiraiya must have been teaching Naruto the foundations of controlling the Kyuubi's chakra in greater amounts, especially given what we know now about Naruto's "key." I'm expecting to see some flashbacks of that training -- finally! -- once Naruto receives the key and has to continue to train on his own.




According to Jiraiya, Minato must have figured that by stripping the Kyuubi's chakra of its "YIN" aspect - apparently the more undesirable aspect of the Kyuubi's being that was sacrificed to the Death God - a human container would then have the opportunity to eventually more easily control the rest of the "YANG" chakra, as long as he was given a chance to actually learn how to use it without dying in the process.

(At least, that's how I finally saw it anyway, after numerous re-reads. Y'all are welcome to disagree with me if you want to. ^^ )


I agree with you on this. This point was extremely confusing at first, but after rereading (and looking through all the translators' notes on this chapter), I think this is the only logical interpretation.





But wait, there's still more that we learned in this chapter. We, of course, also got our "Premonition" of the chapter, as per the title - we found out that Uchiha Madara was able to command the Kyuubi! No wonder the Nine-Tails seemed to have a such strong distaste for Sasuke's ancestor. He likely didn't enjoy being on a leash, after all.


Weeelll, I wouldn't go so far as to say that Madara could command the Kyuubi -- Jiraiya only stipulated that Madara might be able to summon him. It could work along the same lines as Orochimaru & Manda, except on a much bigger scale. And by that I mean, Orochimaru was able to summon Manda, but Manda was far from eager to acquiesce to his demands (without the proper incentives, of course).



I've come to suspect now that Tobi is actually Uchiha Shisui, otherwise known as Itachi's "best friend" that apparently "drowned" and left a suicide note. (http://img90.imageshack.us/img90/8008/narutoch222p04zt2.png)


You know my thoughts on this one already, so I won't repeat them, except to say that the Shishui-Tobi theory is definitely possible, but pretty unlikely (as all good theories are, I guess!) :D



So, did Sasuke know that Naruto was actually just a bunshin, or did he actually try to kill him there? What do you think?


Sasuke definitely knew that Naruto was a bunshin. Karin first mentions that she senses a ton of people with "identical chakra" (i.e. kage bunshins) surrounding them, and Sasuke knows Naruto's tendency to resort to that jutsu. I'm guessing Sasuke took him out right away to prevent the bunshin from following them or from accidentally learning any information from Karin, Suigetsu, or Juugo. This is assuming that Sasuke knows about the property of bunshins to send back information to the original though.



So that leaves five more paths for Nagato himself - (2) hunger, (3) animality, (4) anger, (5) humanity, and (6) heaven.

Ordinarily, I'd have said "heaven," but since the sixth body we saw definitely did not seem to be of Nagato's build - unless he's been eating a whole lot of biscuits since we saw him last! - I'm going to say "humanity," the fifth path, is Nagato's body.


Good analysis here. I agree with you that Nagato is likely to be in the body representing "humanity." I wonder though, if the key to defeating Pain lies in this body? i.e., once the original's (Nagato's) body is taken out, does that mean Pain dies as well?



Now, is it just me, or did you also definitely sense some resentment from Konan and Pain after the flashbacks in how they referred to Jiraiya as an "outsider" who knew "nothing about what happened to them?"


Absolutely. Pain has become completely embittered towards Jiraiya and towards his seemingly noble ideas about "pain" and "growth". He's learned the hard way what those words really mean (apparently there must have been some tragedy after Jiraiya abandoned them), and the first thing he does when he sees Jiraiya again after so many years is to throw those words right back in Jiraiya's face : "It's a conclusion we came to on our own". He seems to find the idea that Jiraiya even knows them any more incredibly presumptuous.

EDIT -- Just wanted to add that with all of Pain's talk about being a "god" and being "above humans", I don't think even he realizes consciously the extent of his resentment towards Jiraiya. Hopefully we'll see more development of this in upcoming chapters.




...it's also so obvious that Kishimoto is pretty much setting up this scenario: a certain somebody is probably going to end up converting him over to the Church of Naruto at some point!


I definitely see this happening, especially given your point earlier about Naruto's resemblance to Yahiko.



I'm definitely guessing that each of the six bodies possesses total domination over a certain kind of ninjutsu, and Pain's current body is that of summoning. Since he's using it without doing anything else, and he's able to summon just about anything, it seems. Whereas his first body, "Yahiko," apparently can control any kind of water-based jutsu (giving even more evidence that it is Yahiko, since we saw him doing suiton jutsus in the flashback.) The question is, with the Rinnegan, why does he have to do that? I really don't have a clue on that though. We'll have to wait for more chapters will tell us the answer.


I thought that too, at first. But what's the advantage in splitting up a body that can do every type of jutsu and control every element into 6 bodies that are only specialized in one thing? But maybe the advantage simply is in having the 6 bodies, and there's no choice in how to split up the jutsus. Or maybe every body is specialized except for Nagato's original, which still possesses its original powers.


apologies for the long post, but you had a lot of good points to respond to. :amuse

noonethere
October 23, 2007, 03:35 PM
Great review.
One thing that puzzle me in the manga is that Jiraiya taught konan, nagato and yahiko how to use elemental chakra but completely negleted this aspect while training naruto.Also one thing which is not clear is whether the sannin were already able to use their respective summoning when they fought against hanzo.
Anyway the fact that none of the Akatsuki members dared to attack Jiraiya can now be explained which shows unexpected humanity from pain.

About Nagato's original body, maybe it is sealed in the machine and that he uses the other six bodies like puppets specialised in certain aspects like taijutsu, ninjutsu, genjutsu, summoning(the one fighting jiraiya), sealing(Akatsuki leader)and maybe medical jutsu.

Your theory about toby being shisui is refreshing. He could have been hiding using henge when he was supposedly dead while Itachi killed another Uchiha to gained the Magekyou sharigan.
Again thanks for you reviews. I'll wait for the rest.

Franckie
October 23, 2007, 04:52 PM
I always enjoy reading your reviews, GK, and reading your reviews happens to be something I always look forward to seeing. I'll be back again sometime down the road to check up on your additions.


According to Jiraiya, Minato must have figured that by stripping the Kyuubi's chakra of its "YIN" aspect - apparently the more undesirable aspect of the Kyuubi's being that was sacrificed to the Death God - a human container would then have the opportunity to eventually more easily control the rest of the "YANG" chakra, as long as he was given a chance to actually learn how to use it without dying in the process.

This part has always confused me, even though I've read through various translators' opinions on the matter. Not everything the Death God seals is doomed forever to dwell within the pit of its belly. If you look at the picture of Naruto's seal under chapter 370, you'd notice the pattern of Shiki Fuujin, which is solid proof that Naruto has had a personal encounter with the Death God before. The Kyuubi's seal is actually composed of two seals: Shiki Fuujin, and Hakke no Fuujin. It was the Hakke seal which sealed the Kyuubi's chakra into Naruto's own body and allows him limited access to the portion of that power. It doesn't explain the Shiki Fuujin seal.

In chapter 370, the frog mentions Naruto transforming the Kyuubi completely, yet Jiraiya counters that Minato split the Kyuubi's yin and yang chakra, and only sealed the yin aspect of the Kyuubi away while sealing the yang into Naruto with the Hakke seal (the "key" the frog possesses solely matches this seal). After all, how can Naruto transform into the demon if two seals with two effects were utilized on two different portions of the demon? If you look back at the matter with the fourth tail, it is heavily implied that Naruto is instigating what people fear the most, which is Naruto transforming into the demon completely.

Just take a look at what chapter 295 is titled:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v332/yami_serge/Naruto/v33_ch295_p01.jpg

"Becoming the Kyuubi" is what chapter 295 is titled, and I find it strange. Furthermore, let's consider the following statements:

-Jiraiya (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/291/10/): "It was as though he became a miniature Kyuubi demon fox."
-Orochimaru (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/293/07/): "My...This sensation...Quite different from what I've seen thus far."
-Kabuto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/17/): "He's become even more like the Kyuubi than he was just a few minutes ago, I see".
-Yamato: Look here (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/03/) and here (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/04/). Yamato makes a slight emphasis on how the chakra feels and notes that something peculiar is going on with Naruto.

Naruto is literally becoming the Kyuubi the more tails he accesses. The fourth tail is significantly different from Naruto's previous forms. Why?

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v332/yami_serge/Naruto/kyubi%20and%20%20naruto/v33_page_067_UK_ch293.jpg

Naruto crosses the seal and enters the Kyuubi's clutches where a big boost in power is given, and the Kyuubi comes one step further to fully reincarnating itself once again into the world via Naruto's body. What I find even more perplexing is what Jiraiya mentions how the seal is weakening, yet he has no clear idea as to why (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/291/10/). Obviously now, Jiraiya concluded that poking the "key" into the Hakke seal is not responsible for the seal weakening, so what other plausible scenario exists?

We know that whatever wraps around Naruto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/95/16/) leaks out of the seal and is channeled by Naruto. If the Yondaime did in fact seal the yin chakra into Naruto (I don't think Shiki Fuujin seals things into peoples' bodies considering it deals with ripping out seals and tying them together to the recipient's soul) as well, him crossing over into the seal and into the Kyuubi's clutches would cause the yin chakra to be "yanked out" in addition to the yang chakra. If this truly is the case, then it would explain why the seal is weakening since Naruto is inadvertently causing the seal to do something it was never suppose to do--pump out yin chakra in addition to the yang chakra--and why the fourth tail is so vastly different from Naruto's previous transformations because the yin and yang is beginning to recombine together with Naruto as a medium, hence the "mini-Kyuubi" business.

Sorry...random thought here.


One thing that puzzle me in the manga is that Jiraiya taught konan, nagato and yahiko how to use elemental chakra but completely negleted this aspect while training naruto.

Elemental training can take any number of years to accomplish. Just doing the leaf-cutting exercise alone can take up to six months. Jiraiya only had a couple of years to prepare a chuunin-level jinchuuriki (Naruto) to face-off against kage-level opponents (Akatsuki). When Jiraiya had the frog slightly, slightly, slightly poke the "key" into the Hakke seal, KN4 blew right up in front of Jiraiya and it nearly killed him.

If you look back at the fuuton training, you'll constantly see Naruto going Kyuubi on several occasions. In chapter 329, one of Naruto's bushins went KN3. The seal that Jiraiya gave Kakashi was developed during the timeskip, and it is implied that Naruto went Kyuubi on more occasions than once. The seal would have taken a massive shock from Naruto going KN4, which may explain why the seal has been weakening over the past few years (Jiraiya still isn't entirely sure of why the seal is weakening again). Jiraiya could no longer train Naruto as hard as he could anymore, and add on to the time it would have taken for Jiraiya to recover from his injuries, which would have been quite a number of months, Naruto's training was further hampered.

Also, Jiraiya planned on having Kakashi finish anything he didn't have time to do when he left him in his care after the timeskip concluded itself. So, he could have initially planned on having Kakashi finish up what he never had time to finish, but circumstances went horribly wrong the moment Kyuubi screwed both Jiraiya and Naruto immensely over.

Gold Knight
October 23, 2007, 05:30 PM
One thing that has to be observed though i dont know its significance is that, It was prolly due to yondi's orders that nobody knows Naruto his is son. The only reason I can think of this dissassociation is thta yondi did not want naruto to attract anymore attention than he allready would due to the kyuubi. Also possibly there is a threat in the narutoverse that yondi is well aware of and doesn't want any enemies targetting naruto. Who knows it could come to some blodline thing though thtat is speculation at best.

Good observation there. But I think it's also because they didn't want Naruto to have the burden of knowing that he was the son of the village's famous hero. They wanted him to have the freedom to choose his own path, not just because he feels like he has to... but yeah, they didn't want him to attract all kinds of attention. Though Itachi seems to have known somehow.


Also I like your point that Jiraiya trained naruto to control the kyuubi that makes quite a bit of sense considering recent chapters. But why hasn't anyone told naruto about this as he is now listening to Yamato abt not relying on kyuubi chakra which is what is part of the great plan for him.

Probably because Jiraiya and Yamato felt that Naruto just was not ready at this point, especially after the timeskip disaster, and then again when Naruto almost killed Sakura. In this case I think Naruto's aggressiveness and wild nature is clearly being a detriment.

This is not to say that Naruto may never master the Kyuubi chakra though, he just doesn't really have the understanding to do so right now. But at least he's got experience to back him up on, now, so he can at least become Kyuubified to some degree without too much risk.


If tobi is uchiha shisui then are u totally supporting the theory that itachi is a good guy ?? Also if Itachi is a good guy why would he tell his brother to kill his best friend to get MS, if that is not the path he used to get MS. Also how did he get MS then?

No, I don't support that theory so much as I suspect it, but I hope it doesn't happen. I'd very much rather Itachi and Shisui have been fellow conspirators.

Itachi probably meant for Sasuke to fall even further down the dark path by having him believe that achieving the MS was only done through killing his own best friend. Itachi probably actually achieved his MS the same way Kakashi did - which hasn't been revealed yet. I think Kakashi holds the answer to that one though.

And I think Sasuke will learn the MS someday, from Kakashi himself, but we'll see.


That is a very good observation on how pain and konan are both so shaken by jiraiya's presence and how konan does not even want to fight him. I think ur right on the mark there. What I wonder is the conclusion of a fight between such reluctant opponents going to be. Or is pain going to spare jiraiya on a whim ;). The more I see of him the more he reminds me of sasuke. Except sasuke is obssesed with revenge while he's obsessed with pain.

Well, I think part of the reason why Pain chose to tell Jiraiya his whole plan was so that he would have an excuse to kill him. And good comparison between Pain and Sasuke there ^^


Jiraiya oogling at konan was just a perfect way to end the chapter. Its things like thes that make me think jiraiya is not gonna get killed after all.

Me too. Though, it's how Jiraiya would like to go out anyway...!


The arch angel observation is brilliant!!! And finding the comic with the exact same pose with the blades flying is really good!! A fight between oro and jiraiya will be interesting , Oro having his snakes weave around and jiraiya having his hair weave around. It'll make for a good fight :D.

Yup!


The dynamics of the legendary sanin are interesting. I have always wondered why jiraiya and oro would ever get along. Oro is just plain evil, He has almost in no flash back showed any sign of humanity. The closest he comes to that is in the flashback with the white snake. Sasuke at least showed signs of behaviour as a normal human being. Infact if his family hadn't been killed in that manner sasuke prolly would not have been a crazy avenger but been a quite stable guy and has been shown to care for his teammates before he deserted them. Oro on the other hand as no driving emotional factor like sasuke but yet chose a much darker path. I am really interested in that story.

I like to see the Jiraiya-Orochimaru relationship as being possibly similar to the Camaron Majere-Raistlin Majere (http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/9494/books20spring20dawningbo8.jpg) relationship from the fantasy series Dragonlance.

Raistlin, a mage, is very much so like Orochimaru in the way he's obsessed about gaining power. But he's rather fragile and helpless on his own. Camaron, a warrior, has always been protective of Raistlin and he was the sort of guy who saw Raistlin's good points instead of his bad. Raistlin has always hated this sort of protective attention, though, as he never liked to feel like he was weak. Eventually, Raistlin finally achieved power and godhood and left Caramon, and became a black mage and an enemy. (http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/6636/raistlinwf0.jpg) And Caramon had to start keep tabs on him, still hoping to bring him back to the fold of good.

Sounds vaguely familiar, huh?


I think jiraiya made a real error in not taking the orphans to konha. Thats what he should have done. Also he finds a ninja with the rinnengan becomes a father figure to him and yet does not entice him to konha is shocking!! I thought that villages were always trying to get stronger clans and families and now he has the chance to get back a real strong ninja and he drops it. The worst part is that it would have been a kindness to the orphans given them a home again. Also I don't think yahiko would have protested that much. I think it was a real wasted chance on jiraiya and very impractical.

I think he was actually thinking about it. But then Yahiko went into that rant about how they've got to protect the Rain Country and that they would always be enemies with the Leaf. So... well, I think times were pretty tough back then. This was right before the Third Ninja Wars, I think, so things were probably very tense between all the countries. I don't think Konohagakure was as tolerant back then.


I found the conversation between pain and jiraiya very nice. Especially when he calls him a comedian. Now thats something pain prolly doesn't hear everyday :D. But kishi is over setting pain for an encounter with naruto. But how will naruto ever get along with pain is a mystery especiall if jiraiya is killed by him.

Ha, yeah, I loved the comedian line. And true, Naruto won't like Pain very much if Jiraiya dies. Which seems to indicate that he'll live.


Also are the words for pain in japaneese and english same or similar? Or is it that kishi has used the english word pain as a name for him and written it phonetically in japaneese. Something like maito gai?

You would write it out "Pein" but it wouldn't sound the same in English, according to NJT and Iwanin. If you were to pronounce what's written, it'd be exactly Pain.

I was confused about this point too, and I argued wouldn't it be パイン ( PA I N ) as his name, instead of ペイン ( PE I N )? And he responded that if it was パイン it'd actually sound more like "Pine!"

ペイ = Makes the sound "pay"
ン= Makes the "n" sound

Pay + n (sounds mind you) = Pain

Well, something to keep in mind - naming conventions in Japanese fiction (especially manga), asks that names *should* be corny. You're talking about a manga with names such as "Scarecrow," "Screw," and "Sea Dolphin."

Compared to those names, "Pain" seems pretty cool.


Excellent synopsis, there, GK!

Thank ye!


Quick question: (Let's say, in regards to the elements) do you see Yin/Yang as a fundamental essence? Not that it would be a surprising element, but I really can't take it as the sixth one, unless for an simple reason. Kishi can make it happen, with all of the Yin/Yang referencing... Iwanin's trans (http://http://mangahelpers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=20195) has me on this point.

I mostly think Yin/Yang is at the basis of each element as all elements depend on one another to be defined. The idea involves a balance found by examining three consecutive elements of the known elemental system (includes just five):

Good question. I was going to talk more about that when I did my 375 review, but... Well, I'm just guessing... I think that Yin/Yang isn't the sixth element myself, mostly because of this page. (http://img521.imageshack.us/img521/588/ch316ukpage09af1.png)

It would have been simple to address to it as being one more elemental affinity, yet Kakashi never mentioned it as one, (http://img135.imageshack.us/img135/1407/ch315ukpage13kb6.png) and Yamato and Kakashi seemed to indicate that it would be too complicated to explain to Naruto. So I'm assuming it's not so simple as that.

And which is Summoning as a power, for that matter?


The only single element that Doton assuredly loses to is the only single element that Fuuton assuredly overcomes: Raiton. So, Doton and Fuuton depend on Raiton to mediate the balance between one element's loss and the other one's gain. It helps define them. Yin/Yang is naturally there in that sense.

I will be back >.>

I think you're onto something there, ornis. I'm definitely looking forward to learning more about Yin/Yang, especially as Shikamaru and Chouji both seem to have family traditional powers related to it. (And probably Ino as well.)


Great review as always, can't wait for the whole volume version. :thumbs

I so hope that this battle won't turn in to some summoning jutsu technique contest, cuz that would only be too lame (and Jiraiyas "power up" doesn't make it any better, but atleast he started right away). My guess why Pain is only using summons is of sentmental purposes only, to beat his master in what he does best to show off his superiority and make us reader fear the worst. Btw, how could he do bunshin no jutsu if he only could do summonings?

Thanks. And yes, I liked that Jiraiya decided to go straight to the finale, lol. I have no idea why Pain is only using summoning right now. As I said, the only thing I can think of is that his current body is just naturally able to do it.


Thanks for the review, GK!! It was almost more entertaining to read than the chapters themselves, and definitely more enlightening. :D

Thank you :glomp


Yeah, it's a pretty ingenious technique -- almost impossible for their prisoners to be intercepted or recaptured on their way back to Konoha. I wonder what Ibiki does with these guys after he's finished interrogating them though. Seems like keeping them in prison or killing them would start an international incident, especially since Konoha's not at war with Amegakure. But whatever, I'm sure Konoha has enough problems without worrying about that.

I don't think it ever gets out that Konoha has POWs, especially if they're in Ibiki's custody, lol. They probably all live in a dungeon somewhere until whenever the time is that they can go without risking national security. Poor guy, though.


Regarding your thoughts on Naruto's upbringing, it was certainly Minato's intention for Naruto to be regarded as a hero, not as an outcast. But I don't understand why he would have wanted his son to grow up with basically no training until he entered the academy. It's possible he wanted Naruto to be able to make his own choice about whether to be a ninja at all, but he must have known that without proper training, Naruto would be at a huge risk to be overwhelmed by the Kyuubi's chakra when his emotions got the best of him.

As you said, Yondaime placed a HUGE amount of faith in his son making the right choices.

Yes, he did, and that's the only thing that's a bit iffy to me...

But I have to assume that Yondaime left it up to Sandaime to decide how to best handle Naruto. And it would have caused some attention if Naruto (who was known as the container for the Kyuubi) was taken in for early training - and probably it would have been a very unpopular decision.

One thing I'm not crazy about is just how did it get out that Naruto was the container for the Kyuubi? There's obviously some people who knew that Naruto was Yondaime's son ( Kakashi and Itachi did ) and it would have been far preferable for the majority of Konohagakure to know Naruto as the Fourth Hokage's legacy than it was for him to be known as the Kyuubi's container.

However it got out that Naruto had the Kyuubi inside him, I don't think Yondaime foresaw that happening, and Sandaime had to end up handling everything more delicately.

Murphy's Law and all that, maybe?


It seems obvious, because we actually have learned it before (and I had completely forgotten about it until reading your review). Back when Jiraiya first meets Naruto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/91/11/), Jiraiya notices that Naruto's seal is set up so that some of the Kyuubi's chakra will leak through to combine with Naruto's.

Oh snap, I forgot that page myself. Good grief. I'll edit that page into my review and credit you, thanks! :hug



Weeelll, I wouldn't go so far as to say that Madara could command the Kyuubi -- Jiraiya only stipulated that Madara might be able to summon him. It could work along the same lines as Orochimaru & Manda, except on a much bigger scale. And by that I mean, Orochimaru was able to summon Manda, but Manda was far from eager to acquiesce to his demands (without the proper incentives, of course).

Hmm, good point.



Sasuke definitely knew that Naruto was a bunshin. Karin first mentions that she senses a ton of people with "identical chakra" (i.e. kage bunshins) surrounding them, and Sasuke knows Naruto's tendency to resort to that jutsu. I'm guessing Sasuke took him out right away to prevent the bunshin from following them or from accidentally learning any information from Karin, Suigetsu, or Juugo. This is assuming that Sasuke knows about the property of bunshins to send back information to the original though.

Again, good point.


Good analysis here. I agree with you that Nagato is likely to be in the body representing "humanity." I wonder though, if the key to defeating Pain lies in this body? i.e., once the original's (Nagato's) body is taken out, does that mean Pain dies as well?

Interesting thought... but I wouldn't be surprised if he'd learned how to transfer his subconsciousness completely from his original body. Orochimaru did, after all...


Absolutely. Pain has become completely embittered towards Jiraiya and towards his seemingly noble ideas about "pain" and "growth". He's learned the hard way what those words really mean (apparently there must have been some tragedy after Jiraiya abandoned them), and the first thing he does when he sees Jiraiya again after so many years is to throw those words right back in Jiraiya's face : "It's a conclusion we came to on our own". He seems to find the idea that Jiraiya even knows them any more incredibly presumptuous.

Yeah... personally I feel bad for Jiraiya. He was just trying to help 'em.


EDIT -- Just wanted to add that with all of Pain's talk about being a "god" and being "above humans", I don't think even he realizes consciously the extent of his resentment towards Jiraiya. Hopefully we'll see more development of this in upcoming chapters.

Hopefully so.



I thought that too, at first. But what's the advantage in splitting up a body that can do every type of jutsu and control every element into 6 bodies that are only specialized in one thing? But maybe the advantage simply is in having the 6 bodies, and there's no choice in how to split up the jutsus. Or maybe every body is specialized except for Nagato's original, which still possesses its original powers.

I have no idea but it might be to remain relatively inconspicuous and move around more easily and still stay powerful. And he must be pretty good at it. None of his own underlings have ever really felt like they've met Pain.


apologies for the long post, but you had a lot of good points to respond to. :amuse

Thanks! I love hearing your thoughts. :D


Great review.
One thing that puzzle me in the manga is that Jiraiya taught konan, nagato and yahiko how to use elemental chakra but completely negleted this aspect while training naruto.Also one thing which is not clear is whether the sannin were already able to use their respective summoning when they fought against hanzo.
Anyway the fact that none of the Akatsuki members dared to attack Jiraiya can now be explained which shows unexpected humanity from pain.

Well, perhaps at the time Jiraiya wanted to concentrate on Naruto's Rasengan and the "red chakra" more than anything else. But yes, it is odd that he never bothered to give Naruto the whole "paper test" for his elemental affinity. As well as go into just how useful his clones could be in training. I think I already commented on "why did they so long to teach THAT to Naruto!??" back then when Kakashi finally taught him. Hmf...

Although, Jiraiya does seem to tend to focus on only teaching one possible jutsu for Naruto at a time until he perfects it. Contrast that to Kakashi, who probably tries to teach as many different jutsus as he can think of, as he's a sort of jack-of-all-trades in that area.

And as we've already seen, Naruto's wind jutsus still haven't really turned out to be feasible without a whole lot of personal risk to himself.


About Nagato's original body, maybe it is sealed in the machine and that he uses the other six bodies like puppets specialised in certain aspects like taijutsu, ninjutsu, genjutsu, summoning(the one fighting jiraiya), sealing(Akatsuki leader)and maybe medical jutsu.

Yeah, good theory. It's still possible that they're all just extra bodies for him, and his body isn't one of them and within a machine somewhere, channeling all his chakra to each one.


Your theory about toby being shisui is refreshing. He could have been hiding using henge when he was supposedly dead while Itachi killed another Uchiha to gained the Magekyou sharigan.
Again thanks for you reviews. I'll wait for the rest.

Thanks for reading :)
[hr]

I always enjoy reading your reviews, GK, and reading your reviews happens to be something I always look forward to seeing. I'll be back again sometime down the road to check up on your additions.

Thanks, Franckie :)


This part has always confused me, even though I've read through various translators' opinions on the matter. Not everything the Death God seals is doomed forever to dwell within the pit of its belly. If you look at the picture of Naruto's seal under chapter 370, you'd notice the pattern of Shiki Fuujin, which is solid proof that Naruto has had a personal encounter with the Death God before. The Kyuubi's seal is actually composed of two seals: Shiki Fuujin, and Hakke no Fuujin. It was the Hakke seal which sealed the Kyuubi's chakra into Naruto's own body and allows him limited access to the portion of that power. It doesn't explain the Shiki Fuujin seal.

In chapter 370, the frog mentions Naruto transforming the Kyuubi completely, yet Jiraiya counters that Minato split the Kyuubi's yin and yang chakra, and only sealed the yin aspect of the Kyuubi away while sealing the yang into Naruto with the Hakke seal (the "key" the frog possesses solely matches this seal). After all, how can Naruto transform into the demon if two seals with two effects were utilized on two different portions of the demon? If you look back at the matter with the fourth tail, it is heavily implied that Naruto is instigating what people fear the most, which is Naruto transforming into the demon completely.

Just take a look at what chapter 295 is titled:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v332/yami_serge/Naruto/v33_ch295_p01.jpg

"Becoming the Kyuubi" is what chapter 295 is titled, and I find it strange. Furthermore, let's consider the following statements:

-Jiraiya (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/291/10/): "It was as though he became a miniature Kyuubi demon fox."
-Orochimaru (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/293/07/): "My...This sensation...Quite different from what I've seen thus far."
-Kabuto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/17/): "He's become even more like the Kyuubi than he was just a few minutes ago, I see".
-Yamato: Look here (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/03/) and here (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/295/04/). Yamato makes a slight emphasis on how the chakra feels and notes that something peculiar is going on with Naruto.

Naruto is literally becoming the Kyuubi the more tails he accesses. The fourth tail is significantly different from Naruto's previous forms. Why?

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v332/yami_serge/Naruto/kyubi%20and%20%20naruto/v33_page_067_UK_ch293.jpg

Naruto crosses the seal and enters the Kyuubi's clutches where a big boost in power is given, and the Kyuubi comes one step further to fully reincarnating itself once again into the world via Naruto's body. What I find even more perplexing is what Jiraiya mentions how the seal is weakening, yet he has no clear idea as to why (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/291/10/). Obviously now, Jiraiya concluded that poking the "key" into the Hakke seal is not responsible for the seal weakening, so what other plausible scenario exists?

We know that whatever wraps around Naruto (http://www.onemanga.com/Naruto/95/16/) leaks out of the seal and is channeled by Naruto. If the Yondaime did in fact seal the yin chakra into Naruto (I don't think Shiki Fuujin seals things into peoples' bodies considering it deals with ripping out seals and tying them together to the recipient's soul) as well, him crossing over into the seal and into the Kyuubi's clutches would cause the yin chakra to be "yanked out" in addition to the yang chakra. If this truly is the case, then it would explain why the seal is weakening since Naruto is inadvertently causing the seal to do something it was never suppose to do--pump out yin chakra in addition to the yang chakra--and why the fourth tail is so vastly different from Naruto's previous transformations because the yin and yang is beginning to recombine together with Naruto as a medium, hence the "mini-Kyuubi" business.

Sorry...random thought here.

VERY awesome thoughts, don't apologize. I enjoyed reading that.

I, too, don't know why the Kyuubi would have such an opportunity to take control of Naruto and re-emerge if it was lacking a crucial aspect of itself, the Yin chakra. Well, technically, we haven't really seen the Kyuubi as a rational being take over Naruto - just simply Naruto going berserk and going on the Kyuubi's instincts.

But it might indeed be - as you said - that it's pumping out yin chakra from a different source, maybe Naruto himself, and that's what is weakening the seal, and putting Naruto even more at risk of becoming the Kyuubi in actuality. Maybe it was set up that way so that Naruto could possibly learn how to control all the chakra, not just the yang chakra, one day.


Elemental training can take any number of years to accomplish. Just doing the leaf-cutting exercise alone can take up to six months. Jiraiya only had a couple of years to prepare a chuunin-level jinchuuriki (Naruto) to face-off against kage-level opponents (Akatsuki). When Jiraiya had the frog slightly, slightly, slightly poke the "key" into the Hakke seal, KN4 blew right up in front of Jiraiya and it nearly killed him.

If you look back at the fuuton training, you'll constantly see Naruto going Kyuubi on several occasions. In chapter 329, one of Naruto's bushins went KN3. The seal that Jiraiya gave Kakashi was developed during the timeskip, and it is implied that Naruto went Kyuubi on more occasions than once. The seal would have taken a massive shock from Naruto going KN4, which may explain why the seal has been weakening over the past few years (Jiraiya still isn't entirely sure of why the seal is weakening again). Jiraiya could no longer train Naruto as hard as he could anymore, and add on to the time it would have taken for Jiraiya to recover from his injuries, which would have been quite a number of months, Naruto's training was further hampered.

Also, Jiraiya planned on having Kakashi finish anything he didn't have time to do when he left him in his care after the timeskip concluded itself. So, he could have initially planned on having Kakashi finish up what he never had time to finish, but circumstances went horribly wrong the moment Kyuubi screwed both Jiraiya and Naruto immensely over.

Yes, I've often argued that Jiraiya had a major setback by being nearly killed during the timeskip, and I don't think he ever really got a chance to supervise or watch over Naruto's training as far as new and powerful stuff.

And I just realized something too: Naruto's clones did tend to transform into the Kyuubi from his bunshin training in trying to master wind, and most likely Jiraiya didn't want to risk that happening. Yamato had to be there to stop it from happening. Didn't think of that.

kaylee
October 23, 2007, 06:34 PM
One thing I'm not crazy about is just how did it get out that Naruto was the container for the Kyuubi? There's obviously some people who knew that Naruto was Yondaime's son ( Kakashi and Itachi did ) and it would have been far preferable for the majority of Konohagakure to know Naruto as the Fourth Hokage's legacy than it was for him to be known as the Kyuubi's container.

However it got out that Naruto had the Kyuubi inside him, I don't think Yondaime foresaw that happening, and Sandaime had to end up handling everything more delicately.


Well, the law against the adults speaking about the Kyuubi being sealed into Naruto was created so that the secret wouldn't pass down to the kids. It could very well be that all the adults knew about it simply because they witnessed it happening. I wonder if the fact that Naruto was Yondaime's son was as widely known... probably not.

The fact that Yondaime wanted Naruto to be regarded as a hero for being the Kyuubi-container (can't remember where this was stated), seems to imply that he did know that other people knew about Naruto being a jinchuuriki. He just didn't predict their reactions to it.

But if Yondaime wanted Naruto to be regarded as a hero, does that mean he didn't want naruto to grow up with a "normal" life? oy, I'm confusing myself here. :amuse

Gold Knight
October 23, 2007, 09:05 PM
All that really makes me wonder what really happened to Naruto's mother. I think she's a big part of the whole puzzle somehow. :darn

lordHokage
October 28, 2007, 06:12 PM
All that really makes me wonder what really happened to Naruto's mother. I think she's a big part of the whole puzzle somehow. :darn

I agree with you. :blink

flareofdragon
October 29, 2007, 10:24 AM
I will just talk about the elemental affinity here because I don't really want to type something extremely long.

A lot of people like these techniques ever since the Zabuza arc and have been waiting for Naruto learn them since forever. They mostly believe this because chakra manipulation is apparently a high leveled skill that requires a ton of natural talent. And this is all true, we have had confirmation from the manga so it would naturally be better to learn elemental techniques right?

I don't think so. Elemental techniques, while cool, do not REALLY change the battlefield , especially for the amount of effort put in (think about it, the leaf cutting itself takes 6 months, imagine how long the waterfall would take, and thats just the beginning). It only pays off in later years when one has mastered the use of elements and really push them to the limit. These abilities are mostly used as a surprise attack or strengthening what is already given. Naruto already has that in the form of Kyuubi, he can use this to grab people out of range, he can use this to repel attacks, he can use it to shoot things out like a cannon. What Naruto does not have is the things Jiraiya has taught him, combating genjutsu, taijutsu. His ninjutsu is already on par with chuunin, so maybe he put less focus on that.

Additionally, Naruto has always been about things that have sheer power. He has never been a chakra manipulating guy, and Jiraiya has already said that Naruto would be better off using up his huge chakra pool rather than learning how to fine tune it. Chakra manipulation is simply chakra control in a very minute by minute basis. Besides, these nature abilities need to be mastered to be truly effective (remember, we are talking above Jounin level group instead of just defending yourself), and 2 and a half years is really not enough time without something to level the field.

It would be like learning the special move before learning how to battle in straight out combat. Its just not going to be effective when fighting real warrior battles.

Gold Knight
October 31, 2007, 03:39 AM
There's the negative side-effect of "losing control" with the "cloak of the Kyuubi" though... and we've already seen how effective brute power can do to somebody like Itachi and his genjutsu... just wasting chakra.

I think Jiraiya didn't take in account just how useful Naruto's bunshins could be to his training. We won't ever know for sure on that though, but now that Kakashi's taught him their usefulness, that does give Naruto the necessary time to be able to learn several jutsus that may potentially be much less chakra-draining than the Rasengan and otherwise, but still gets the job done just as effectively. Fine-tuning is now something Naruto CAN afford to do now, despite not having the "genius" to be able to do it without the Kage no Bunshin.

It makes Naruto's dreamt-of path to being a Hokage that much more feasible as well.

kiddo7
October 31, 2007, 03:58 AM
Actually I was wondering, how likely is it that Jiraiya did not actually know about that property of Kage-bunshins? I mean it is, after all, not one of the jutsu he uses often (Or should I say ever???). One could always say he would have to know, him being one of the legendary and all but I could not help wondering.
What do you think?

I mean, Kakashi is known to be a genius and it almost seemed to me like he had just recently came to the realization, at the time he decided to use kage-bunshin to train Naruto. Like it was some new knowledge he aquired during the time skip alongside his mangekyou...
Wait a minute! never mind. Ok I'll just shut up for now

ornis
October 31, 2007, 11:24 AM
So, is Konan getting shanked or not? :notrust Your prediction? Perhaps you'll share some hope there, 'cause I can just see her being dropped sooner or later<---pessimism, yeah, well...

I hope she isn't just a side-show<---thinking, "That's a bit more optimistic."

Gold Knight
November 01, 2007, 05:11 AM
Actually I was wondering, how likely is it that Jiraiya did not actually know about that property of Kage-bunshins? I mean it is, after all, not one of the jutsu he uses often (Or should I say ever???). One could always say he would have to know, him being one of the legendary and all but I could not help wondering.
What do you think?

Now that you mention it... Jiraiya's never seemed to have bunshins in the entire series. You could be right, he just didn't have enough experience with it. Whereas Kakashi, who likes to use speed, strategy, deception and trickery in his battles, would naturally know more about the advantages of the bunshin. Eh, who knows.

But as already mentioned before in this thread, there was also always the risk that one of Naruto's clones would get out of hand and accidentally be Kyuubified. Yamato had to be involved with that kind of training.

It's possible that Jiraiya always had the intention of training Naruto's kage bunshin no jutsu, but he wanted to be sure that Naruto could control the Kyuubi better. Obviously, over the time-skip, Naruto still hadn't cleared that objective.


I mean, Kakashi is known to be a genius and it almost seemed to me like he had just recently came to the realization, at the time he decided to use kage-bunshin to train Naruto. Like it was some new knowledge he aquired during the time skip alongside his mangekyou...
Wait a minute! never mind. Ok I'll just shut up for now

Well, it's a technique that only a jinchuuriki could use with all the chakra he has, and still required a large amount of patience and discipline, and somebody like Yamato to keep the Kyuubi from taking control. Kakashi also never really concentrated solely on improving Naruto's skills before - he always had Sasuke and Sakura to worry about, too - he probably had more time to think about Naruto while he was stuck in the hospital bed recuperating from his MS usage. And Kakashi wasn't even sure that Naruto could accomplish his objectives of obtaining a powerful elemental jutsu in that case, either. It was a calculated risk.


So, is Konan getting shanked or not? :notrust Your prediction? Perhaps you'll share some hope there, 'cause I can just see her being dropped sooner or later<---pessimism, yeah, well...

I hope she isn't just a side-show<---thinking, "That's a bit more optimistic."

Oh, Kishimoto has developed Konan far too much to just leave her out of the story now. I think there will be a battle involving Konan later on, just not in this case.

This battle is clearly more between Pain and Jiraiya, and Konan didn't really want to fight her old mentor. We'll likely see Konan against somebody else later on.

GrayFoxx
November 03, 2007, 07:27 PM
Thank you so much for the review GK, it makes me understand the story a lot more :amuse

biotech_vertigo
November 05, 2007, 01:42 PM
Personally about the section where Jiraiya was in the shadow of his 'captive', wasn't said 'captive' already on the way to Ibiki inside the toad that Jiraiya sent back?

I'm already beginning to wonder about who/what the hell that 'captive' is.....

Gold Knight
November 20, 2007, 07:52 PM
No, there were two captives, he sent the transformed toad-captive back to Ibiki, and it seems Konan allowed the other one to get away from Jiraiya and escape. The ambiguity of the scene where he told the toad to "take the captive" back to Ibiki was meant to fool us into thinking that was only a henged bunshin of the captive, instead of Jiraiya controlling the captive from the shadow.
[hr]
* * *

One more chapter to go, then I'll be finishing this review up.

I've decided to go back to weekly reviews after this, though. This volume reviewing is getting a bit old for me, and I need to get back into a weekly habit of writing anyway.

TWNJ
November 21, 2007, 04:18 PM
hey, heres some links that i found useful with the back ground to naruto.

this one - http://forums.narutofan.com/showthread.php?t=106576 - is good for the whole stories background (it will change your look on the whats happened so far forever...)

this one - http://www.diskusjon.no/index.php?showtopic=454210 - isnt exactly the one i wanted but its as close to the right info. The one i read had all this stuff about a god that made the bijuu and why etc etc.

just thought you may be interested.

Gold Knight
November 27, 2007, 12:31 AM
OK, change of plans...

I don't think I will be finishing up this volume review, as there's not really much that I can expand on - I think these last few chapters have been mostly self-evident, and I'm not really all that interested in trying to analyze and rate them. At one point, it almost seemed like Kishimoto was talking down to his readers - but I think even little kids would understand what's going on right now.

Let me just say that I believe that once this arc finishes up (that is Jiraiya vs Pain) - at which point I think the story will get more interesting - I will likely do a weekly review at that point and try to keep it going then. I'll also go into a few thoughts on the ending of the Jiraiya vs Pain arc in that review as well, don't worry.

In the meanwhile, I'm unstickying this thread.

Marq
November 29, 2007, 11:19 PM
Ah, oh well. Still looking forward to your reviews GK, they are very informative and tend to touch on things even I don't notice.

Gold Knight
December 12, 2007, 09:21 AM
Definitely doing a weekly review this time. The chapter was too good. Give me the weekend though, it's been a while and I'm a bit out of practice - lol.

And Marq, I likely wouldn't have been able to find much that you didn't already notice in the last five chapters. Naruto has never felt so watered down to me in the whole series.
[hr]
* * *

I owe an apology to everybody here.

I haven't been very enthusiastic about the second part of Naruto for a very long time now, and my love for the manga has dropped to an all-time low. It's a bit disappointing to say the least. Not saying that I would rate any of the most recent chapters any lower than 3/5 - I still probably wouldn't - but it does seem as though that Kishimoto's writing has become rather stale and cliché of late.

I would have very likely rated every single chapter of the first Part of Naruto a 5/5. So, as you guys can imagine, I never expected that I'd be rating ANY chapters lower than 5 during Part Two. Alright, maybe one or two here and there, but there's just been too many 3/5's and even some 2/5's lately. Just a few 4/5's in a row would have bothered me.

And I first grew enamored with reviewing - aka doing these Ten Comments - on a weekly basis *because* of my tremendous love of Part One of the Naruto storyline. I had never been so hooked to a story in my life and couldn't get enough - and that passion had been going strong for at least three years. I had re-read Naruto countless times - well over 30 times at least. It was one of the first mangas I ever read, and I couldn't believe how good it was. So, for that reason I couldn't talk enough about it.

My first Comments were made in the Discussion threads at Naruto Forums in the spring of '05 as some of my very first posts there. Naruto Part 2 had just started after a grueling month-long wait in December '04 after the conclusion of Part One and Kakashi Gaiden, which thrilled me to no ends. I started with Chapter 251, which actually had some very positive reactions even though they were simple, short comments - they really were short statements back then, since I wasn't very well known back then and I was just trying to make my post stand out as much as possible so I could get some nice feedback.

And the best way to do that at first was to do it the KISS way - "Keep It Simple Stupid." Some humor here and there and I was well on my way to reviewing for almost two years. After a while in reviewing Naruto here at MH, thanks to you guys, I started being more and more confident in my writing, enough that I didn't feel like I had to follow the KISS rule anymore, and my reviews started getting larger and larger until they were almost more time-consuming than it was for me to write out my art history papers back in college!

But I'm glad I did review Naruto, and I haven't felt like I've wasted my time at all. It's been very rewarding. If I had never started reviewing, I doubt very much that I would be administrator of Mangahelpers, a terrific site with an awesome community, right now. Because my Comments were what first attracted me to the attention of the NF mods, and despite my relatively low post count there, I was ultimately moderated to supervise the Naruto Library there, and ever since it's been one surprising development after another on my way to helping NJT start MH.

But it's a fact now - Part 2 just isn't the same manga as Part 1 Naruto. I haven't been able to muster up the energy to talk about it as much as I had in the past. With graduate school coming up, I've been struggling with the idea of whether it was really necessary for me to keep taking out free time to review a manga on a weekly basis that I wasn't as interested in anymore. I finally decided no this past weekend. So I'm afraid it's finally time for me to bow out.

But I'm still not going anywhere, and I'll still be willing to answer questions about how I feel about recent Naruto chapters (and Bleach, ES21, Vagabond, Berserk, Gantz, and One Piece for that matter) - I'm just not going to review them anymore. Another reason for that, I'll finally feel free to be able to get a little bit behind in reading Naruto, and be able to just catch up five chapters at time; that sort of thing - which is sometimes more enjoyable than reading one chapter at a time. In my signature, there is a link to a general thread where you can ask me for my opinions on anything. You all know me by now now; you can be sure I'll be forthcoming with something to say if I know something about what you're talking about and I'm online enough to be able to respond. And feel free to recommend new stuff to me too - I love manga in general, and I'm beginning to love anime as well.

But let me end this with - thanks a thousand times for all your support guys. You've all been great. :)

kiddo7
December 12, 2007, 09:36 AM
This post of yours reminds me of the wga strike; I feel a tinge of sadness which is overshadowed by understanding.
But there is one useful thing I learned from Teentitans, that can be applied to this situation too: "Things Change"
I too do not find as much excitement and satisfaction from reading my favorite mangas anymore and yet, I will miss your comments, which most likely where what started me posting on Mangahelpers. Things are different now but that does not mean they are bad just different. Mangahelpers will still be here and GK will still be here and we will find new things that inspire us.
Thank you one more time for giving us as much as you did.

Saifi
December 12, 2007, 03:42 PM
dang GK i was soo looking fwd to your reviews being regular again , it was kind of an incentive to post , and also a place where we could go on and on regarding various tangents of discussion about the latest chapters in w8 for the next ones, but..

i do agree that real life does indeed take its toll , esp when part 2 hasn't been as consistent as part 1, i myself thought of starting my Komments but then realized that i do better at responding then creating (plus i am way too biased) , anyway ... well miss your 10 comments, and hopefully if naruto follows suit with the current arc(good stuff) , now that its winding down ( i think) maybe some of it would motivate you to return :).

have fun and thx for all your reviews.

kaylee
December 12, 2007, 06:25 PM
:hug

GK, your reviews are what got me to start reading here and posting here as well, and I'm sad to see them go. They are definitely a major part of MH history, to say the least. So thank you (a million times over) for spending so much time and effort on all of your reviews! But as long as I can still talk about Naruto with you, I'll be happy. :D

And I hope Naruto picks up again soon, at least enough to inspire you to read it on a weekly basis. GK not liking Naruto is just too sad. :scry

fenix2012
December 13, 2007, 05:25 AM
GK I defenetly hope u star rewiewing again , this is just my second post , but i can state that ive been enjoying spendind little of the time that i have (real life does take it's toll"qote Saifi :)") for the passing year, and that u are one of the reasons for making it so great and lastin. Hope u can eventually find ur "desire" back for doing rewies again. Will be here w8tin.Respect

Marq
December 13, 2007, 10:01 PM
GK, it's sad to see that you won't be reviewing Naruto anymore, but I can't disagree with your notion/opinion that Naruto part 2 isn't that great. I even share that opinion. Normally everytime a naruto chapter comes out, I'm always excite. So far part 2 hasn't been like that in a long time. It feels like you are witnessing a trainwreck of some sorts. Anyways I hope Naruto picks up soon and you will be inspired at least read it on a weekly basis again.

matsyes
December 14, 2007, 02:59 AM
I guess everybody above has already stated how its going to be a real loss not being able to read ur reviews , Though it is hard to deny Part 2 hasnt really provided that much to write abt ... I hope kishi ramps up the level of naruto soon and it'll reach the level of part 1 again ..At any rate I guess I'll be dropping by ur thread soon :D

Luckas
December 21, 2007, 06:58 AM
It is sad nut understandable GK, thanks for all your reviews until now.

GPZrag
December 27, 2007, 05:43 PM
OMG u_u... GK one the many reason i started to post here in MH was because your awesomes reviews... even tough im not a native english speaker, your reviews were always so easy to understand and always came witha a lot of light about a chapter... i hope you can do from time to time a review or another... plz feel free to a review of a chapter that you like, thx a lot.... anyways :)