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Gold Knight
July 09, 2008, 07:20 PM
In my Ask Me thread, juUnior asked me for my thoughts on 403-407. So for anybody's who interested, this was what I wrote. Sorry, not a proper review, but what the heck. :)

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403: I liked the first part very much. Itachi showed that he had tremendous foresight and knew that there could still be problems even after he died. So he decided to check out Naruto - who he had to know went to a lot of trouble to save Gaara, somebody he barely knew - so what would he do for a friend of his? So after he ensured that Naruto was indeed a true friend to Sasuke by considering himself a better brother to him, while still seeming to be loyal to Konohagakure, he posed a very difficult question that Naruto would have to face soon enough. Getting an answer he liked - that Naruto would try his best to find some way to save both friend and village - he bestowed on him some kind of mysterious gift. I like intrigues, and that gave us another one. And it was well-written as well. It showed that Naruto's meeting with Itachi wasn't pointless, and it should've never been.

I didn't really like the last part though. Kishimoto was just trying to cover his tracks by showing Itachi with his forehead protector turned around - his original design, but one he abandoned later on for a better one. If Sasuke had indeed seen Itachi cry at that point and repressed that memory, it made no sense to me. You'd think Sasuke would try to find any sign that his brother wasn't really as heartless a murderer as he seemed to be that night.

I also wonder if Kishimoto threw us a red herring by having Tobi ask Sasuke if he needed to look at Itachi's body. I had previously suspected that Sasuke did possess the EMS now, because Itachi apparently "transferred" all his doujustus to him. Of course, if it was that easy, Madara's brother would have done the same for him - but perhaps he didn't know how to without giving over his eyes? In any case, I actually still think Sasuke has the EMS, but the star pupils are apparently, I guess, just his normal MS...
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404: Kishimoto did a good thing by having Kisame find out Tobi's identity as his previous leader here. If Tobi is the Mizukage, that means Kisame is still an essential character to the Akatsuki. I was worried Kisame would become kind of obscure and unwanted and worse of all - ignored - after Itachi's death, but apparently not, so good.

And that also means - not to toot my horn too much but - I was actually partially right in guessing the leader of the Akatsuki was a Kage years ago. XD I just didn't know it would be Tobi, I thought it was Pain, but pfft, minor details and all that, haha.

Naruto finally finds out about Jiraiya's death. The first ever death of one of his close friends, and Jiraiya was that to him. I guess since it's a momentous event for Naruto (perhaps he'll grow up a bit) Kishimoto wanted to expand on this extremely awkward scene to show his shock fully, but I could have done without it in this chapter, really.

"Taka" and Akatsuki apparently aren't getting along together very well, that's to be expected I guess. I found it amusing Madara threatened to kill every Taka member if they betrayed him. I think Sasuke isn't intimidated at all and they will likely come to blows at some point, I have no doubt. I think Madara basically means to use Sasuke as a pawn to attack Konohagakure, this time hiding in the shadows himself. While their missions coincide at the moment, I don't think Sasuke is going to be so willing to go to the same extremes as Madara, especially when it comes down to capturing Naruto. And I'm guessing Kisame and Suigetsu still has another bout to come. I don't think much must have happened in the first one (they probably just got wet...)
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405: This chapter's supposed to show the grief of Naruto and Tsunade, especially Naruto, over the death of Jiraiya. While I did like the melting popsicles and what they signified to Naruto, I actually think the grief over Asuma's death was done better. And Itachi, as well. I guess there's been so many deaths lately that this chapter didn't do much for me. I didn't shed any tears or anything - though Kishimoto did a good job on drawing Naruto's sorrow. (I love how Kishimoto always manages to find new facial expressions to draw on his characters.)

I did like that Iruka came in as a major supporting character at least briefly, too. Shows that he's still alive - and that he's still a fine foster father to Naruto.

I liked the last page a lot, though. Something about remembering a person through all his years, from adulthood to childhood, makes you realize that Tsunade had WAY more memories of Jiraiya than Naruto ever did. I felt sorry for Tsunade that Naruto laid all the blame on her, especially as Tsunade herself told Jiraiya not to go in the first place.
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406: Heh, I loved this chapter the most of the recent ones. Shikamaru is such an *awesome* character. It's funny how he started out looking like such a minor character (even punkish) and yet, has become probably the most developed character in the entire series. I sometimes wonder if Kishimoto's even surprised by it himself...!

It seems like Jiraiya sure did a ton of favors to Konohagakure though, because now they can prepare better for Pain's coming. They've got a Rain nin (who should tell them what his comrade already told Jiraiya about the downfall of the Rain and Hanzo), one of his disposed bodies from when Jiraiya defeated him inside one of his frogs (maybe a secret to how his technique works), AND they've got a hint from Jiraiya himself at who is the real Pain (will get to that next chapter...)

Was that Shizune who was about to perform the autopsy on Pain's body? Man, she didn't look feminine there >.>

Guess Kishimoto wants to put in a possible canon pairing involving the glasses wearing code-breaker girl, Shiho, with Shikamaru. Since both their names start with Shi-, I'm willing to bet Kishimoto plans to pair them up at some point. I still prefer Temari with Shikamaru, but I'll give Kishimoto a chance to change my mind, I guess. :/

I lol'ed at the 106cm part. Looks like even Kakashi has some fond memories of his own of the grizzled old toad sennin... heh, sometimes I think Kakashi should be the one in the most grief since he won't be getting any more Icha Icha books. xD

It's funny, but you guys know how Shikamaru always seems to have a "this is so troublesome" look on his face? He didn't seem to have it when Kurenai showed up. His eyes actually seemed to brighten, as if he's already deciphered the purpose of his life. He was to be the mentor of Asuma's kid, and he's looking forward to it as though it's not anything too troublesome to him... I found that interesting.

Anyway, I think Shikamaru's positive attitude about everything after the death of Asuma certainly seemed to have an influence on Naruto. I think that had been what Kishimoto had been planning all along - to make Asuma's death significant to the plot of Naruto by having Shikamaru be able to emphasize with Naruto's pain and show him what he shouldn't just mope around and that he had to get on with life. (And maybe Naruto will finally grow up a little?) In all, it's not bad plotting at all, it just took a tad too long for my tastes. >.>

But excellent chapter even so, I'd have given this one a 5/5 without a doubt. :D
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407: This was a so-so chapter. I'm actually kind of disappointed with Jiraiya's reasoning for his code. Also I find it too far-fetched that Jiraiya would remember exactly the first word on specific pages of one of his books to use as a code. The only way I can force myself to believe that is that he planned a code-making system already before for some possible warning to Konohagakure. But this code seemed to be specifically only one that Naruto could recognize, so it's all hard to swallow.

And if that's what Kakashi's books are like, damn. XD

Pain has a new body, and thankfully, it's not Jiraiya. I didn't think that would be possible because I didn't think Pain seemed interested in diving into the ocean to try to find his sinking body. I do find it a little weird that Jiraiya recognized all the Pains as former people he's fought before, so the "true" Pain must be somebody Jiraiya has fought before and with a personal connection to him, we just don't know who yet. But Jiraiya seems to know that none of the Pain bodies is really him in actuality, and I guess he felt it was more important to tell Konohagakure that they needed to look outside the nine, pierced Pain bodies for the real entity. Possibly Jiraiya didn't figure that anybody would know who the real Pain is but him, so sending a name would probably be useless.
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408: This one hasn't come out yet, but I've seen the spoilers. But I'll save that for later this weekend ;)

Karma
July 09, 2008, 10:18 PM
agreed with your review.. Nicely done even though i miss the long details with pictures from you... But I think the code isn't complete.. because i doubt its just that to know about pain..

ShadowScythe
July 10, 2008, 06:38 AM
Thanks for the review(s), I went back and looked over the chapters, thinking about what you said. I'm surprised you didn't mention the scene where Tobi seemed to be mocking Pain. I thought it was pretty interesting, seeing the tension between the two of them. With Madara's secrets pretty much revealed, I'm really interested in finding out the truth behind Pain.

I also can't wait to see the 8 tails, I hope he won't just be a random character to reappear 3 chapters later, dead.

Gold Knight
July 10, 2008, 01:46 PM
I think I had already commented on Tobi mocking Pain before, back when we first saw them both together. Remember - Konan kept calling Pain "invincible" and "undefeated" and Tobi chuckled at that, and I think it was just because Pain had never had to go up against Madara in an actual battle yet. I think Madara knows exactly how he can beat him - he just doesn't have to yet.

But yes, there's still a lot of mystery left with Pain. It'll be interesting for sure. :)

And yes, I hope not either. Naruto could use somebody else who could help him control that pesky lil demon inside him, anyway. I thought Nibi would be able to do that before she died, but perhaps this guy...

juUnior
July 10, 2008, 02:05 PM
THX GK once again for Your thoughts on Naruto chapters :D

403 - wow, I didn't thought about it, that Itachi saw how Naruto was trying his best for Gaara, so he considered him the great opportunist <via friend> to Saske - hehe that's why I love your reviews GK, always something with which I didn't come up with <and sometimes it's just obvious like that xD>

404 - awesome! hehe the comment on "the wet" was goodie xD And I agree with You, that Saske and Madara relation want be an easy one <but probaly easier, than for example Saske - Orochimaru, because this time we have two Uchiha :X>

405 - oh yeah, I had the same feeling - it was sad, we could cry and all, but really, I was expectiong MORE of this <for example: big panels of crying Naruto on the whole page, as it was with Saske few times on Madara talk and his "Shocks" :x>

406 - like I agreed with you SOME time ago <in reviews in weekly cycle, when Your were writing on Hidan and Kakuzu arc xD - end> so I agree this time: SHikamaru is one of the best developed characters in the entire series, if not the best <and I mean: developed, not shown>
hehe with Shizune it was good, that Kishi wrote her name on the sign in autopsy room - I would say it's a new character <Kishi might have watched anime, because in anime authors of that did such hair to Sakura, when she was "operating" bro of Gaara :x>
About SHiho - I feel the same. I favor really Shika x Temari, but actually Shiho is from the same village, and maybe diffrences in villages maybe a problem. And when we look at it, how Shikamaru was "thinking" back than in Konoha war, where he was full-tracking those sound ninjas, we can assume it a good part to Shikamaru: he wants just to have family, goes to job, his wife can be normal not necessary beatiful - and vuala: at this point we have Shiho ^^>

407 - agreed :p


But I'll save that for later this weekend
A review? xD