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Gold Knight
February 18, 2007, 10:18 PM
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Can't.... believe.... it...! Fillers over!??

Well, 'twas a week of much excitement, what with fillers finally ending on the Naruto anime and Shippuden starting with, as Deidara would say, a bang. If you're one of these (like me) who enjoyed the episode enough to want to discuss it, be sure to check out Bax's Shippuden Review. (http://mangahelpers.com/forum/index.php?topic=15149.0)

I'll also be rating the episode at the end of this review, as a sort of bonus comment I guess you could say.

But Shippuden wasn't the only exciting Naruto-related installment this week, of course. We also saw another end to a Naruto storyarc in the manga... one that started last early June with Chapter 311. No kiddin'. June. Now it's the middle of February. GEEZ, where did the time fly by? Come to think of it, I'm nearing 50 reviews on Naruto at MH, as well! Woo! Anyway, I'll also be throwing in some quick comments about what I thought of the whole arc in general and where it ranked among all the other great tales we've been treated to in the series.

Time for credits! Thanks to Touch for getting us the RAW as usual, Hisshouburaiken for speedily translating the chapter, Rockstar1426 for making a MQ scanlation that I could use for my review, and Fnuckale for cleaning the header.

As always, enjoy reading, and looking forward to your posts.


* * * Gold Knight's Ten Comments on Naruto Chapter 342: King. * * *

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Ah good... Now I can see Sakura bathing better!

1. King of the Toads! I was surprised that the cover this week had absolutely nothing to do with Shippuden, as many expected last week when we all heard that there'd be some colors again this week. (Three chapters in one volume with some color...? Hey - is that a record for Kishimoto?) Instead of some sort of Shippuden advertisement, though, we get Naruto proudly standing atop four toads stacked on top of each other and peering through the woods.

Well, as usual, I do think Kishimoto has a purpose for all his covers. What's the significance of this one, though? Heck, all you have to do is read the title. King, right? Of course it's a reference to what Shikamaru learned from Asuma about the "King" that he had to protect, but I think this cover hinted that Kishimoto also intended for the title to be a bit ambiguous with the cover. I mean, Naruto here has a commanding posture usually reserved for a pirate captain steering his ship through a vast ocean - he sure seems to be very much like a leader. He's already got the toads doing whatever he wants them to do (besides Gamabunta, I'm sure, who probably still views him as an underling). How soon before he becomes Hokage and takes charge of Konohagakure, as well?

On that note, I'd really like to see a return of the toads soon. I've been wondering why Naruto hasn't used them at all this whole time. You know, I'd think they would have been useful in getting to Gaara faster, chasing Deidara, bringing Kakashi back to Konohagakure when he was injured (instead of Gai carrying him), getting to the Bridge - of course, it'd ruin the element of surprise in some cases. Still, Naruto hasn't even called any of his amphibian allies to come to his side at all the whole time in Part 2. Well, now that he's refusing to work with the Kyuubi, he might have more use for them now. I'd be willing to bet that there are some toads with different abilities as well that could be useful in battle, just like Kakashi's pups. Hope to see more of them soon enough.

Anyway, I liked the cover. Sure it isn't all that exciting, but you know, we really don't get many colored covers or doublespreads where we actually get to see the forests of Konoha in the background, which I've always thought was strange. So I liked that Kishimoto's seemingly starting to do more with trees and foliage here, as well as the toads. It's like he's saying, "Don't worry, I haven't forgotten anything. These things will come with time."


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Holdin' on for deer life... right?

2. Emerging Victorious. Guess Sakura and Sai would have been better advised to just stay behind to help the rest out against Kakuzu, huhn? (Not that anybody did much of anything except Naruto, Kakashi, and Yamato...) Sakura is more than likely going to have a whole lot of respect for Shikamaru now, having faced one of the Akatsuki before and needing help from Chiyo-baasma to actually beat him. Shikamaru, on the other hand, won almost single-handedly. I doubt that Sakura would have any problems following Shikamaru's lead from here on.

Sai also seemed amazed, even though he's never fought an Akatsuki before. Must have had a good briefing of how dangerous the organization was back home, or he's heard a few stories from Sakura and Naruto. Or he knew that Orochimaru used to be an Akatsuki and must have expected the rest to be equally as formidable.

Anyway, Sakura seemed to understand exactly why Shikamaru chose to take Hidan on himself, and why he "had to win at all costs." She's probably feeling the same way about trying to get Sasuke back to Konohagakure, and she sees the same kind of determination in Naruto's face daily, as well.

Note that Shikamaru hastily put away Asuma's box of cigarettes into his bag. I wonder if Kishimoto intends for him to keep it as a token now, so that he would only take it out whenever he achieves a great victory. Heh, wonder if Shikamaru's victory pose in the games will consist of taking out a cigarette and puffing on it, now...


http://img508.imageshack.us/img508/1800/03dn9.png
Wonder if Naruto knew that was a compliment...

3. New Respect! Just like Shikamaru, Naruto's also earned some major points with his victory against Akatsuki. Remember when Ino and Chouji were both like "same old Naruto again?"

Now Ino's healing Naruto while mumbling about what he just did almost in total disbelief, and diiiiid ya notice just how quickly Chouji jumped on Naruto's bandwagon, even daring to compare him with Shikamaru? Even though he did fall short of calling them identical minds (which would have been laughable, really...), he finally recognized at least that Naruto wasn't somebody he should ever underestimate, too.

More additions to the Church of Naruto. But also, this could be a big turning point for Naruto, because he's progressed so much that no one in Konohagakure should any longer view him as a bumbling fool anymore. Kiba has already lost to Naruto once before, Hinata obviously always believed in him, Sai, Sakura and Sasuke have all first-hand witnessed his determination, Shikamaru, Rock Lee, Ten-Ten, and Neji recognized his power in the Chuunin Exams, Yamato, Kakashi, Jiraiya, and Tsunade have watched him mature before their very eyes... who's left now? Shino? Ha.

So after this, I think it'll be more of a matter of proving that he's capable to the rest of the world, now. Besides the Sand, of course, who are already convinced. Should be intriguing.


http://img519.imageshack.us/img519/7816/04azr5.png
(...and for me to read more Icha Icha Paradise, woot!)

4. Surpassing Expectations. Not much to say here, but after seeing Naruto's growth, Kakashi almost seems to be sad that the "next generation" is about to take over completely. It's as though he did relish his role as a young, elite ninja but recognizes that eventually he's just going to have to deal with being "one of the best" instead of the very "best." So he's having mixed feelings here.

For some reason I thought he'd have been more happy, considering that he's always more interested in reading the latest romance novels and just relaxing out on a roof somewhere. At the same time, though, you could sense his anxiety to get out of the hospital every time he gets put there.

So you could call him a man of action, and he's recognizing that he's going to have to share it now. Well, all things must come to an end. But it's almost like he's experiencing a mid-life crisis right now. I mean, he's only thirty years old now, and he's definitely still got a lot left in him. Cheer up, Kakashi-sensei! (Says me, I'm probably going to be feeling the same way when I turn 30 too, and have to turn Mangahelpers over to a bunch of you young 'uns. Ha!)


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Sealed Again?

Incidentally, concerning the "seal" on Sasuke's neck in this panel, you could say that was likely a blooper on Kishimoto's part. But you could also say that Kakashi is "seeing" Sasuke in his mind, and he still sees his old seal around Orochimaru's curse mark. Either way it's a minor detail that I'm not going to worry too much about - I just commented because it seems to be a point of interest for many people. Kishimoto also drew the seal the last time we saw a Sasuke panel before (see for yourself (http://img231.imageshack.us/img231/46/10ago7.png)) so maybe he's saying that Orochimaru put another seal on it, perhaps to keep the beast from unleashing itself too often?


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Don't I even get social security?

5. Out with the Old, in with the New. This was indeed a badass moment for Kakashi - one of his more memorable quotes - but I think I would have almost preferred to see Kakuzu already having been killed by Naruto.

I mean, that RasenShuriken hit Kakuzu point blank in the back, and should have destroyed the heart inside his chest. It did enough to vaporize the other two hearts (as evidenced by the crumbling masks the chapter before.) So why these two, and not the one inside Kakuzu's body?

Either Kakuzu managed to shield his own heart from the impact with the tendrils inside his own body, or he moved his heart to, say, his calf, just in the nick of time. (Hey, he's weird enough that he could have possibly done that.)

And no, I'm not being nit-picky because Naruto didn't get a kill. He's killed before (there was poor ol' Yuura masquerading as Itachi (http://img465.imageshack.us/img465/2899/v29ch260pg16qb0.png), after all), so that wasn't a big deal for me, really. It's more of a question of how did Kakuzu survive that one?

While we're at it, how about the fact that since Kakuzu was still alive, why wasn't Kakashi even interested in taking him back to Konohogakure to be interrogated by, say, this guy? (http://img186.imageshack.us/img186/9840/ch331ukpage14ck6.png)

I think perhaps it's because Kakuzu might not have made it anyway, and Kakashi saw that he was dying, that he had taken too much damage. Or possibly he just saw Kakuzu as being too dangerous to just bring along back to the village. Who knows what other tricks he had up his sleeves... er, back? Not to mention, having experimented so much on himself, Kakuzu likely wouldn't have been affected too much by any kind of torture interrogation. So, I wasn't really too surprised that Kakashi decided to just finish him off right there and then.

After all, they have Jiraiya scouting and getting information, somehow, about the Akatsuki activities, so it wasn't THAT necessary. Shikamaru still probably should have thought to take Hidan's head back, though. He was obviously helpless.


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Complacent? Shikamaru? Never...

6. Rest Up! Just a quick observation here - it seemed to me as if it won't be too long before we see both Team 7 and Team 10 in action again against the Akatsuki. Tsunade definitely seemed like she had more work for everybody as soon as they all healed up. Perhaps she's finally decided to try an initative strike?

Almost amusing though, Tsunade's speech here reminded me of what my football coach would usually say to the team after each game. "Okay, good game, rest up over the weekend, come back for practice on Monday. Don't get drunk or do anything stupid." Guess that's life in Konohagakure, as well.

I was somewhat surprised, and disappointed, though, that we didn't get to see Shikamaru being promoted to jounin here. He beat an Akatsuki almost single-handedly, after all. I'm still wondering if we'll ever find out just how exactly jounins are made - well, I'm sure that's a detail Kishimoto's been saving up for later in the story, but still, I'm ready to find out already, heh.


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Papa Shikamaru's already cool!

7. Kurenai a Momma!? Well, now we know what Asuma wanted to talk to Kakashi about (http://img355.imageshack.us/img355/6030/ch313ukpage14uz5.png), now, before Kurenai entered the room and he had to shut up. And why Asuma looked so longingly at Kurenai's window (http://img528.imageshack.us/img528/451/ch319ukpage02zs6.png) before leaving the village. And why, so early on in the arc, Asuma seemed to have a change of heart (http://img49.imageshack.us/img49/241/narutov35ch314p13zt9.png) about his role at the village and also about how he felt towards his father.

And why Kurenai never did accompany Team 10 on their mission to avenge Asuma.

Why? What else? Kurenai's pregnant, by golly! I happen to remember a few predictions back in the summer where this was the case. Congratulations to all these who saw this coming, you were right. I actually didn't see this coming, but it all fits and makes sense now.

And so, of course, you just know it has to be Asuma's baby. Who else it could be? (No, Shikamaru's not that MUCH of a pimp, people! Har.)

So, where does our ol' Shikamaru come in now? For starters, he's probably going to feel protective of the kid, as well. I think that he could be said to be completely awakened by this turn of events from his former carefree, lazy way of living, and he now realizes fully that he has to work hard in order to protect his village if he ever wanted to live up to that "cool adult image" that he admired so much in Asuma.

Pretty cool moment of character development. Also neat that Kishimoto didn't just concentrate on character deaths, but also character births (and you just know we'll find out what this kid looks like in the future.)


http://img520.imageshack.us/img520/6098/08yq3.png
So prepare and get a lot of baby powder...

8. And The King Is...! Finally, we get the definite answer to a question that's been burning in all our minds ever since Asuma casually mentioned the subject over a game of shogi with Shikamaru (http://img511.imageshack.us/img511/1107/ch316ukpage15vx6.png) in Chapter 316. Who is the "King" that they all have to protect?

The unborn children of Konohagakure. The next generation. Aw heck, of course. It's not for the sake of the Hokage that they're fighting to keep their village safe, it's for their OWN future, their families, everything that's yet to happen. Asuma didn't realize it until he found out that Kurenai was pregnant with his child, and of course he would naturally fall into that way of thinking.

We really should have known, heh. They may worship the generations that's come before them, sure, but they can't really protect them. They're already dead. What else can they protect but their future?


http://img517.imageshack.us/img517/7163/09uj1.png
BRING IT ON, OLD MAN!

9. Better Luck Next Time, Son. This was the best part of the whole chapter to me. Shikamaru's always been one of my favorite characters in the series, but to see him finally lose a game of shogi to his father... hilarious, and now we know where Shikamaru got his super IQ from!

But in that clan, with their shadow-controlling abilities, it makes sense that they'd all naturally be strategists at heart. Shikaku obviously has had far more experience than Shikamaru, and I wonder if he's still better even now...! Well, for the time being, I think we can reasonably assume that Shikamaru still has a ways to go, after all, before he catches up to his father. It's actually nice to see Shikamaru lose for once - to see that he's still got challenges ahead of him.

And I'd love to see Shikaku in action again, so that we could possibly compare him to Shikamaru. Maybe someday, especially if a certain somebody we know is up to no good again...


http://img81.imageshack.us/img81/2070/10yg2.png
All in a day's work.

10. Guess Who's Back? Well, Sasuke and Orochimaru have returned, and they're obviously on the move. It looks as though as Orochimaru is going to be the villain of the next arc, or we are going to have an arc seen from Sasuke's perspective for the time being. That would be a nice change from all the Naruto and Shikamaru we've been getting recently, and it would be a good time as any to find out what's exactly going on in Sasuke's world.

He's been a stranger to the story for quite a while, after all.

And as for his hesitation to kill the shinobi lying on the ground...? Maybe he doesn't think it's worth his time. And just maybe, he's still kind of avoiding killing as much as he can, especially since Itachi is really the only one he wants to kill. "Soft," huhn? Wouldn't it be worse if he was on a killing spree and he's going around the country on a rampage? Maybe he realizes he'd turn too much into a monster like Itachi if he did that. Either way, we'll have to wait and see what's exactly going on in Sasuke's head. Should be interesting.

RATING ON NARUTO CHAPTER 342: 5 of 5 - This chapter was an epilogue which did its job, which is wrapping up most of the important loose ends in an entertaining way. It was a much better finish than the last chapter of the Grass Arc (though Sai's acceptance of Team 7 as his friends was touching, it wasn't as much fun). All in all, it made me feel satisfied with the arc as a whole, despite all the minor annoyances that I had with it. For that, the chapter does deserve a 5 rating.

FINAL RATING ON IMMORTAL ARC: 3.5 of 5 - Definitely not the best arc in the whole series. But it's a step up from the Grass Arc (the last storyline), which I would've rated as a 3. My problems with the arc overall includes the obvious foreshadowing of Asuma's death, the timing of Team 7's appearance in the final battle which seemed contrary to Tsunade's deadline, and how some of the companions (ie. Izumo, Kotetsu, Ino, Chouji) never really seemed to have bigger parts in the battles with the Akatsuki. And of course, how in the world Shikamaru was successful in getting Kakuzu's blood on Hidan's blade without him even suspecting. We were also left without answers to Hidan's background. I'm really hoping that the next arc will be much better. I haven't really enjoyed Naruto the same way that I used to since the end of the Sasori Arc. But overall this arc was more exciting and interesting than the Grass Arc was, although it falls short of all the arcs from Part 1 (which I would have ranked all a 5, actually) as well as the Sasori Arc (probably a 4.5). There were a lot of positives such as Shikamaru's character development and Naruto's progress learning a new jutsu, and finally, of course, Hidan and Kakuzu were very entertaining as an Akatsuki duo. I'll miss them.

RATING ON SHIPPUDEN EPISODE 001: 5 of 5 - Amazing episode. I'm so glad the fillers are over, and they did an excellent job pumping me up with the beginning, which was an unexpected preview of the Grass Arc (which looks even better animated). But lots of humor and nostalgia throughout the episode when it returned to the beginning of Part 2, despite some minor changes being made. The animation quality was great, the dialogue was perfect, and I give it all a thumbs up and can't wait for the next episode.

Predictions: We get a big dose of Sasuke in the next chapter and find out what Orochimaru is up to. I don't know if it will actually involve Konoha at all, most likely a different country. Let's hope so.


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Yup, we knights are awesome like that.
Comment!

CheckMate
February 18, 2007, 10:39 PM
Hi..

1. About bringing Kakuzu to the village. Dont you think It is extremely dangerous, considering he still has his tendrils attached to him? He can easily find another / other hearts to restore his energy/life.
So i think it's wise for Kakashi to finish him off on the spot.

2. Sasuke still 'cannot' kill his opponents, means it is a very definite sign that he will surely come back to Konoha one day.
I agree that the next arc iwill be bringing/saving Sasuke back to Konoha (again)


Anyway, a great well written comment like always. Thanx for that.

Gold Knight
February 18, 2007, 11:00 PM
Hi..

1. About bringing Kakuzu to the village. Dont you think It is extremely dangerous, considering he still has his tendrils attached to him? He can easily find another / other hearts to restore his energy/life.
So i think it's wise for Kakashi to finish him off on the spot.

Said that: "Or possibly he just saw Kakuzu as being too dangerous to just bring along back to the village. Who knows what other tricks he had up his sleeves... er, back? Not to mention, having experimented so much on himself, Kakuzu likely wouldn't have been affected too much by any kind of torture interrogation. So, I wasn't really too surprised that Kakashi decided to just finish him off right there and then."

So yeah, I agree.


2. Sasuke still 'cannot' kill his opponents, means it is a very definite sign that he will surely come back to Konoha one day.
I agree that the next arc iwill be bringing/saving Sasuke back to Konoha (again)

Oh yes, I forgot to comment on that. I'll go back and edit it.


Anyway, a great well written comment like always. Thanx for that.


Thanks!

manu
February 18, 2007, 11:19 PM
Yuura was a sacrifice for Itachi's jutsu. Doesn't the term sacrifice generally mean killed for other purposes. So in my eyes this chapter just proved to me that Naruto isn't capable of change. So yeah... entertaining chapter just not mind blowing.

Robotic Red
February 18, 2007, 11:27 PM
One thing.

About your comment on Sasuke's seal, I'm assuming you're talking about the squiggly line around the Heaven seal when you said "Kishimoto also drew the seal the last time we saw a Sasuke panel before (see for yourself) so maybe he's saying that Orochimaru put another seal on it, perhaps to keep the beast from unleashing itself too often?"

Remember way back when that Kakashi put a seal around the curse mark to try and keep it from activating. To work, Kakashi's seal had to depend on Sasuke's willpower.

Remember now GK?

Nice comments.

Athena
February 18, 2007, 11:31 PM
Did you guys notice in the last page Sasuke said "They aren't the ONES I want to kill”. He used the plural form of the noun not the singular. I think he put Naruto in the same place as Itachi to kill; Meaning he wants to kill Naruto as much as he wants to kill Itachi

This single sentence/word completely ruined Sasuke’s character for me. He does not deserve a friend like Naruto.


Inana

LadyHatake
February 18, 2007, 11:38 PM
And so, of course, you just know it has to be Asuma's baby. Who else it could be? (No, Shikamaru's not that MUCH of a pimp, people! Har.)

Shika isn't, but Genma is :D

<3 another great review.

SilveryShadows
February 18, 2007, 11:48 PM
3. lol. Shino.
Shino always gets excluded.

4. What big battle haven't we seen that ends up with Kakashi needing to go to the hospital, or a very long recovery rest? Not many, if any at all! ):

If it is Kakashi seeing Sasuke in his mind, why would he see Sasuke with his time jump clothes? Kakashi never met Sasuke after time jump. So, that doesn't make sense to me.

I think you're right about the reseal. The last panel shows the seal.
Possible that Sasuke goes into CS2 form a lot, but can't control it well, gets out of control, so a new seal...

7. Although I knew of the pregnancy as a possibility, it still was a big surprise when I read the spoilers. Lots of surprises from the two(this and Bleach) Mangas I'm following.

And Kurenai&Asuma were engaged/married too.
Do Sarutobi children tend to grow up one(or both?) parentless or something? Konohamaru, now this unborn child...

No more lazy&carefree Shikamaru :( Although I like the new determined Shikamaru, but I prefer the old him.

10.
Maybe he realizes he'd turn too much into a monster like Itachi if he did that.
I think so. He didn't want to kill his closest friend to obtain MS like Itachi, so he probably wouldn't want to kill people just to test his abilities either..

Nice review. I look forward to the arc review.

RaZe
February 19, 2007, 12:00 AM
Either Kakuzu managed to shield his own heart from the impact with the tendrils inside his own body, or he moved his heart to, say, his calf, just in the nick of time. (Hey, he's weird enough that he could have possibly done that.)
wewt, im not the only "heart in foot" guy. -_-



And no, I'm not being nit-picky because Naruto didn't get a kill.
especially since sasukes just as much of a kill-virgin. -_- and really, since the hearts are apparently self-sufficent, they may qualify....

Gold Knight
February 19, 2007, 12:06 AM
Yuura was a sacrifice for Itachi's jutsu. Doesn't the term sacrifice generally mean killed for other purposes. So in my eyes this chapter just proved to me that Naruto isn't capable of change. So yeah... entertaining chapter just not mind blowing.


I understood that as meaning the Akatsuki were willing to "sacrifice" Sasori's followers, not that the jutsu itself would kill them - but nevertheless you can't deny that Naruto still killed Yuura. He attacked him with lethal force. Of that I'm pretty sure. By the same token Kabuto would have died as well from Naruto's Rasengan, if he hadn't been able to heal himself.



About your comment on Sasuke's seal, I'm assuming you're talking about the squiggly line around the Heaven seal when you said "Kishimoto also drew the seal the last time we saw a Sasuke panel before (see for yourself) so maybe he's saying that Orochimaru put another seal on it, perhaps to keep the beast from unleashing itself too often?"

Remember way back when that Kakashi put a seal around the curse mark to try and keep it from activating. To work, Kakashi's seal had to depend on Sasuke's willpower.

Remember now GK?


I do remember that, but I had figured that *that* seal had been broken a long time ago. Guess not, though.



Did you guys notice in the last page Sasuke said "They aren't the ONES I want to kill”. He used the plural form of the noun not the singular. I think he put Naruto in the same place as Itachi to kill; Meaning he wants to kill Naruto as much as he wants to kill Itachi

This single sentence/word completely ruined Sasuke’s character for me. He does not deserve a friend like Naruto.

Inana


I did notice that, but I'm thinking he's probably thinking of the Akatsuki as a whole, since they're associated with Itachi and most likely bearing some responsibility for what happened to his clan as well. Could also be talking about Naruto. Not sure, though.



Shika isn't, but Genma is :D

<3 another great review.


Thanks <3 And Genma? Hmm. >.> We'll find out if the kid develops a habit of chewing on toothpicks.



4. What big battle haven't we seen that ends up with Kakashi needing to go to the hospital, or a very long recovery rest? Not many, if any at all! ):

Yeah, true. His Sharingan takes such a toll on his body that - well, that's his real weakness. He's no Yondaime, just flying through all the battles like crazy one after another. In that sense Naruto has definitely surpassed him, but he always had more chakra and energy to begin with. =(

Otherwise Kakashi might likely have been recommended by Jiraiya to be Hokage instead of Tsunade...



If it is Kakashi seeing Sasuke in his mind, why would he see Sasuke with his time jump clothes? Kakashi never met Sasuke after time jump. So, that doesn't make sense to me.

After thinking about it, that was a bad comment on my part. It's probably the same seal Kakashi placed on Sasuke's neck.



I think you're right about the reseal. The last panel shows the seal.
Possible that Sasuke goes into CS2 form a lot, but can't control it well, gets out of control, so a new seal...

Could be that too >.>


7. Although I knew of the pregnancy as a possibility, it still was a big surprise when I read the spoilers. Lots of surprises from the two(this and Bleach) Mangas I'm following.

And Kurenai&Asuma were engaged/married too.
Do Sarutobi children tend to grow up one(or both?) parentless or something? Konohamaru, now this unborn child...

Wouldn't be surprising, considering shinobi die all the time...


No more lazy&carefree Shikamaru :( Although I like the new determined Shikamaru, but I prefer the old him.

He'll probably always have his share of quite moments just like Kakashi does, heh.


10. I think so. He didn't want to kill his closest friend to obtain MS like Itachi, so he probably wouldn't want to kill people just to test his abilities either..

Nice review. I look forward to the arc review.


Thanks and I'm not reviewing the arc actually. I rated it at the end of the review ^^;



wewt, im not the only "heart in foot" guy. -_-

Haha, who knows...

bax
February 19, 2007, 12:30 AM
Well, now that he's refusing to work with the Kyuubi, he might have more use for them now. I'd be willing to bet that there are some toads with different abilities as well that could be useful in battle, just like Kakashi's pups.


I would love to see that too GK. But yet again, all the events in Part 2, in my view, were unsuitable for him to summon the toads. Lets recall back. Well, during the Save Gaara arc, he was in a hot pursuit. I don't think a toad would be any good in that time-restraining event. During the chase of Deidara, eemm.... toads won't do any good against bird, ne? >.> Plus, if he summons a toad at least as big as this (http://www.imagehosting.com/show.php/235586_Naruto12410.jpg.html), I don't thing Deidara wants to play either :tem Then in the Grass Arc, eerrm. they required subtle movements, don't they? And in the fight against Oro, Naruto absolutely been played into Oro's words >.>

And in the Immortals Arc, well, one of the main point of this arc, is for Naruto to show off his new jutsu :p



Sai also seemed amazed, even though he's never fought an Akatsuki before. Must have had a good briefing of how dangerous the organization was back home, or he's heard a few stories from Sakura and Naruto. Or he knew that Orochimaru used to be an Akatsuki and must have expected the rest to be equally as formidable.


Sai definitely knows what is an Akatsuki ^^ His mission was originally to kill Sasuke back in the Grass Arc. And he knows Sasuke is under Oro's supervision. And Danzou being one of the oldest in Konoha, surely knows what to expect from Oro, and surely Danzou knows that Oro was one of the Akatsuki before. I mean, Danzou is military-typed man. You don't go into the battlefield without knowing who your opponents are.



For some reason I thought he'd have been more happy, considering that he's always more interested in reading the latest romance novels and just relaxing out on a roof somewhere. At the same time, though, you could sense his anxiety to get out of the hospital every time he gets put there.


:XD Well, that's as cliche as it can gets ^^ Younger generations will always take over.



Either way it's a minor detail that I'm not going to worry too much about - I just commented because it seems to be a point of interest for many people.


Well, I'm surprised as well. Either Oro doesn't care about it, or it's just Sasuke. Well, impossible Oro can't remove that, I mean he created "immortality" :o Or Kishi wants to convey the message that Sasuke still remembers his friends back in Konoha. Because Kakashi once said that, the seal is activated by his own will :tem



We really should have known, heh. They may worship the generations that's come before them, sure, but they can't really protect them. They're already dead. What else can they protect but their future?


So much for the Hokage as King :XD Lucky, I didn't say that -_-; Meh, Hokage fights for the village, not to be protected, so, it's making sense ^^


"The title Hokage, is a promise to die protecting the village"

I read this somewhere >.> Maybe on one of the chapters' covers



10. Guess Who's Back? Well, Sasuke and Orochimaru have returned, and they're obviously on the move. It looks as though as Orochimaru is going to be the villain of the next arc, or we are going to have an arc seen from Sasuke's perspective for the time being. That would be a nice change from all the Naruto and Shikamaru we've been getting recently, and it


Yesh, finally a change of view for a while. Hopefully, Oro is planning something bad again. Well, both Sasuke and Oro wants to kill Itachi. Maybe they'll go after Akatsuki after this. But hey.. please no >.> Akatsuki just lost 2 members. In total 3. Now, there are only 7 of them left.

And please no Konoha either. I mean, I don't want Naruto and Sasuke to clash at this moment. In fact, in reality, Sasuke doesn't have any business to do with Konoha right now. He shunned himself from that village. But well, I should get ready for another twist of events by Kishi again ^^


And nice as always GK :kkthumbs

Gold Knight
February 19, 2007, 12:47 AM
I would love to see that too GK. But yet again, all the events in Part 2, in my view, were unsuitable for him to summon the toads. Lets recall back. Well, during the Save Gaara arc, he was in a hot pursuit. I don't think a toad would be any good in that time-restraining event. During the chase of Deidara, eemm.... toads won't do any good against bird, ne? >.> Plus, if he summons a toad at least as big as this (http://www.imagehosting.com/show.php/235586_Naruto12410.jpg.html), I don't thing Deidara wants to play either :tem Then in the Grass Arc, eerrm. they required subtle movements, don't they? And in the fight against Oro, Naruto absolutely been played into Oro's words >.>

They would have gotten there even sooner, though, with a huge toad carrying them just as Gamabunta carried Naruto quickly to the hospital, right? But maybe they aren't ALL that fast-moving in the end, not sure.


And in the Immortals Arc, well, one of the main point of this arc, is for Naruto to show off his new jutsu :p

Yeah, but how did they get there so fast? :s


Sai definitely knows what is an Akatsuki ^^ His mission was originally to kill Sasuke back in the Grass Arc. And he knows Sasuke is under Oro's supervision. And Danzou being one of the oldest in Konoha, surely knows what to expect from Oro, and surely Danzou knows that Oro was one of the Akatsuki before. I mean, Danzou is military-typed man. You don't go into the battlefield without knowing who your opponents are.

Probably right ^^


:XD Well, that's as cliche as it can gets ^^ Younger generations will always take over.

True, but it's nice to see these people aren't living in the past after all.


Well, I'm surprised as well. Either Oro doesn't care about it, or it's just Sasuke. Well, impossible Oro can't remove that, I mean he created "immortality" :o Or Kishi wants to convey the message that Sasuke still remembers his friends back in Konoha. Because Kakashi once said that, the seal is activated by his own will :tem

Hmm, you have a point there what with why Orochimaru didn't remove it... maybe he was amused by it.


So much for the Hokage as King :XD Lucky, I didn't say that -_-; Meh, Hokage fights for the village, not to be protected, so, it's making sense ^^


"The title Hokage, is a promise to die protecting the village"

I read this somewhere >.> Maybe on one of the chapters' covers

Yeah, it was the first chapter ^^


Yesh, finally a change of view for a while. Hopefully, Oro is planning something bad again. Well, both Sasuke and Oro wants to kill Itachi. Maybe they'll go after Akatsuki after this. But hey.. please no >.> Akatsuki just lost 2 members. In total 3. Now, there are only 7 of them left.

Yeah, one of the things I'm really interested in is seeing what the Akatsuki will do as a result >.>


And please no Konoha either. I mean, I don't want Naruto and Sasuke to clash at this moment. In fact, in reality, Sasuke doesn't have any business to do with Konoha right now. He shunned himself from that village. But well, I should get ready for another twist of events by Kishi again ^^

Hope not either ^^



And nice as always GK :kkthumbs


Thanks for coming by bax :)

MadDog
February 19, 2007, 01:18 AM
Great summary, as always. I can't beleive this arc had being going on since June. Not bad overall, but I'm glad the story is moving on.

3. I wonder if the details of the recent battle somehow make their way back to Akatsuki... If so, you can bet the house that the remaining members will pay more attention to Diedara'a advice concerning Naruto. When Akatsuki finally make their long awaited second attempt to apprehend him, they will most likely show him more "respect" by not holding anything back.

9. Yeah, I've always wondered about older ninja like Shikaku and others of his generation. Are they still active duty, part-time, retired, etc..? While they don't play a big part in the story, it would tell us more about the village and the career length of most ninjas (who manage to survive).

10. I wouldn't mind seeing a chapter of two from Sasuke's perspective. It would be a cool twist on things. Not sure if it will actually happen though, as Naruto was off finsihing his jutsu for most of the recent chapters, prior to the last couple. When I first saw the ninjas scattered around Sasuke, I had the impression that they were from hidden rock. But, it lookds like they're just generic, which is too bad. At this point in the story, I'm surprised we haven't seen more from the other main villages. Hopefully one of the other villages gets worked in somehow. I'd like to see hidden cloud myself...possibly related to Akatsuki killing Yugito (doesn't seem likely, though).

ophidial
February 19, 2007, 04:12 AM
thanks for the review gk, it was definately a nice end chapter to the arc
with alot happening yet maintaining a rather relaxed feel to it.
though i agree with you about arc as a whole not being up to
the standards of part1, anyways there are a few things i'd like to add.

1. the toads would definately be great to see again, i can't see why
kishi has left them out of the story for so long, except maybe the somehow
naruto may have angered/killed one of the toads and perhaps that's why jiraiya told naruto not to use 'that jutsu'. though i would be somewhat disappointed if 'that jutsu' wasn't something entirely new.
also on the note of toadback travel i guess it would be somewhat
unwieldly as most of the toads would demolish the terrain.

5. well naruto definately deserved the kill but if the kakazu surviving
needed explaining the most probable answer would be that in chapter
341 in the early pages it has kakazu storing up chakra in his body to act as a buffer to narutos attack.

Reaver Reload
February 19, 2007, 07:43 AM
I can't believe that Dragonzair's totally outlandish theory (at the time) came true! Kurenai is pregnant. I could almost hear her screams "I WAS RIGHT I WAS RIGHT I WAS RIGHT!" followed closely by a: "I hate you Kishimoto... how dare you leave Asuma's child fatherless!"

And did anybody notice that we got an extra page this chapter? 18 pages this time. I sure as hell hope Kishweemoto continues his cover rampage! More colour love this way.

I'd love it if we see the "cleanup" with Zetsu carrying Hidan's head off into the distance =D Although, half a chapter from Sasuke's perspective would be pretty awesome, we'll finally know where he's at and hopefully how much time there is left to "save" him from Orochimaru.

Dragonzair
February 19, 2007, 08:46 AM
I can't believe that Dragonzair's totally outlandish theory (at the time) came true! Kurenai is pregnant. I could almost hear her screams "I WAS RIGHT I WAS RIGHT I WAS RIGHT!" followed closely by a: "I hate you Kishimoto... how dare you leave Asuma's child fatherless!"

And did anybody notice that we got an extra page this chapter? 18 pages this time. I sure as hell hope Kishweemoto continues his cover rampage! More colour love this way.

I'd love it if we see the "cleanup" with Zetsu carrying Hidan's head off into the distance =D Although, half a chapter from Sasuke's perspective would be pretty awesome, we'll finally know where he's at and hopefully how much time there is left to "save" him from Orochimaru.


I was right right in the fact that Asuma's baby was going to be the King. And you all were "NOOOOES! It's Naruto!!!!"

Heh. Three predictions, plus me saying Asuma was Sarutobi's son came true. What a chapter. Yet...:crying :scry

Anywho. XD

fatboy812000
February 19, 2007, 09:02 AM
nice overall review i agree with most but i dont c why every1 seems 2 be caught up in the whole narutos first kill thing personally thruout the series naruto has never really killed any1 the trend continued and i wasnt surprised or disappointed and i think it was more about him improving as a shinobi not about who kills who, i mean there isnt a head count is there? .but then this is just MHO.

ps-a little off topic here, am i d only 1 abit pissed that we may not c kakashi gaiden i mean a chance to animate the 4th :yondaime ,why wud they pass dat up.

kadoman
February 19, 2007, 11:50 AM
Great review as always GK.

Can I just say that I also cannot believe DZ's outlandish theory came true! I think it's really lame, to be honest. I think the whole pregnancy/marriage/doomed romance between Asuma and Kurenai thing sounds like a cheesy plot device from The Bold and The Beautiful (to any England dwellers = Eastenders) and I think it's not one of Kishi's finer moments as a story teller.

But...moving on...GK, I love your idea about 1. Oro being the main villain (oh yes, yes, yes!) and 2. the story being told from Sasuke's pov. That would be fantastic. Someohow, I don't think the second option will really come true, but it's nice to dream. :amuse

As for Sasuke's reluctance to kill, that is intriguing indeed, coming off the back of his coldness towards Naruto and Sasuke (remember, he was quite prepared to kill him!) or so we were led to believe. Seems like Kishi is toying with our minds again, but that's good. Keeps us guessing.

I think he does still have a long way to go before he is at his brother's level and that he didn't kill those ninja has convinced me more than ever that Naruto will save him. :amuse

P.S - I also want to say that Shika's dad is hot! :D

conan
February 19, 2007, 11:59 AM
Great review as always GK.

Can I just say that I also cannot believe DZ's outlandish theory came true! I think it's really lame, to be honest. I think the whole pregnancy/marriage/doomed romance between Asuma and Kurenai thing sounds like a cheesy plot device from The Bold and The Beautiful (to any England dwellers = Eastenders) and I think it's not one of Kishi's finer moments as a story teller.

But...moving on...GK, I love your idea about 1. Oro being the main villain (oh yes, yes, yes!) and 2. the story being told from Sasuke's pov. That would be fantastic. Someohow, I don't think the second option will really come true, but it's nice to dream. :amuse

As for Sasuke's reluctance to kill, that is intriguing indeed, coming off the back of his coldness towards Naruto and Sasuke (remember, he was quite prepared to kill him!) or so we were led to believe. Seems like Kishi is toying with our minds again, but that's good. Keeps us guessing.

I think he does still have a long way to go before he is at his brother's level and that he didn't kill those ninja has convinced me more than ever that Naruto will save him. :amuse

hahahah, bold and the beautiful or east enders, nice one kado, but for real I agree with you, the story of naruto is one of the main reasons I follow it, to mee it is one of the best I have ever seen, and this end of the story was just lost on me, it does really seem like a cheesy plot device, but I hope kishimoto will impress us later, there is still lots of room for that, and GK you are always awesome and you dont need me to tell you that every week, I really didnt comment on your comments this time becuase this chapter frickin confused me, but it seems that kadoman has posted my exact thoughts anyway so thats fine.

glasskatana
February 19, 2007, 12:27 PM
Great comments as always GKsr! I have only a few things to add.
I'd like to think that Naruto's attack did indeed destroy all three of Kakuzu's hearts and that Kakuzu was currently in the last stages of his life.

Also, in regards to your idea that Shikamaru would take out the cigarrettes, you can see Shikamaru put them at Asuma's grave, so I think he's done with them. Or perhaps, every time he visits Asuma's grave he'll smoke, just for him. :amuse

And finally, I find it strange that in the last double spread, you can see a curse seal on Sasuke's neck. I think Kishimoto is simply forgetting that it's not supposed to be there. Last time he drew Sasuke (in the Sai and Sasuke arc) you can see that there is no seal anymore. Perhaps Sasuke Activates the curse seal so that he doesn't use the seal mark too much. After all, Kakashi did tell him that if he relies on the curse mark, his strength growth will stop. Oh well.

juUnior
February 19, 2007, 03:23 PM
Great review :D

Only one think I think other way around:


Shikamaru, on the other hand, won almost single-handedly. I doubt that Sakura would have any problems following Shikamaru's lead from here on.

I woudn't compare this fights like that. For me, Shikamaru beat Hidan with mostly the helps of Asuma, as Sakura with Chiyo. If Shikamaru didn;t know about Hidans abilities, the fight would be differnt, and he probably would have much worse case scenario with his plan. So for me it's not like much of a difference in Sakuras of Shikamarus fight with Akatsuki. But defiently it's other way around with the time and chapters on that xD

And I also would rank 5/5 for the chapter. And probably as you GK said, arc maybe will be with Oro, Saske and co. But I would like to see some mix Oro, maybe Saske vs Akatsuki member(s). That would be fine for me ^^

kiddo7
February 19, 2007, 03:24 PM
Did you guys notice in the last page Sasuke said "They aren't the ONES I want to kill”. He used the plural form of the noun not the singular. I think he put Naruto in the same place as Itachi to kill; Meaning he wants to kill Naruto as much as he wants to kill Itachi

This single sentence/word completely ruined Sasuke’s character for me. He does not deserve a friend like Naruto.

I think you are forgetting one important fact here, This manga is translated from japanese, so if you are going to make inferences based on sentence structure and grammar you have to refer to the original text.
Did you check with one of our wonderfull, dedicated translators here, to make sure that is what he said in japanese? or did you just assume that the translation was accurate enough?

@GK
Great review, I have already given my opinion in Robotic Red's review and I find it very hard to say a lot more meaningful things after doing it once. But i do have tsome fresh thoughts since then.

The most current one being about shikamaru, or rather the state of being chuunin/jounin I am begining to think that unlike the gennin/chuunin transition this one is more of a personal choice, you can apply to become a jounin if you want more missions where you are sent outside of konoha and even the fire country, and you will eventually be assigned a team. While people who do not like to "commute to work" can opt to stay chuunin like iruka, kotetsu and izumo, and probaly shikamaru. I think it is a brilliant theory, if i say so myself, this could imply that it is possible to actually posses skills superior to a jounin and remain a chuunin if you do not want the hassle. sound familiar? it als would mean that (assuming all my theories are correct) shikamaru will become a jounin as soon as he applies for the possition and that it will happen soon since we all saw how he decided to change and become a more active person/ninja.
Well what do you say Goldy? oh any of you others are welcome to give your thoughts on this too by the way.

one last thing, I loved it when Shikamaru had his ass handed to him in shougi by Shikaku. I would have given that panel the caption: "who's your daddy?" I don't know why but the idea of shikamaru loosing in shougi of all things just made my entire week. It was by far the best part of this chapter for me. Shika's dad is slowly turning into one of my favorite minor characters. Actually when i think about it, so far his every appearance was pure ... not sure, some weird combination of badass, cool, and funny, I guess.
yeah thats all for now.

dfcarolinaguy
February 19, 2007, 04:56 PM
That was a great review GK and I agree with your rating too :noworry

SilveryShadows
February 19, 2007, 05:59 PM
I'm not reviewing the arc actually. I rated it at the end of the review ^^;
Oh. ^^' Thought you meant... ah..
It was late. Wasn't really reading right. nods. hee.

chvis002
February 19, 2007, 06:05 PM
1. The fact that naruto only once summoned gambakchi (the giant toad, my spelling sux) in all his fights so far makes me wonder what it would be like if he summoned him all the time. It would probably like some pokemon (or digimon or whatever cursed shonen manga with giant beast battleing it out) shit and no-one except 10-year-olds would read it. So I personally don't want to see that giant toad ever agian.

7. When I read spoiler thread I thought it was complete bullshit but boy was I wrong. (a little side not: it kind of ruined the event, I'll never read spoilers again) Too bad we didn't get to see something more than "hello you *blush*" between them. A kiss wouldn't have hurt (the girl in me speaking :P)

9. If Shikamaru has an IQ over 200, then what does his dad have? Or is he just good at whatever they're playing?

10. I'm glad to see that there's some humanity left in Sasuke. I think that the odds of him not beeing taken by Orochimaru drasticly increased.

Prediction: team 8 anyone? Me wants to see Hinata in action *drewls*

Lastly, great review as always GK :thumbs

Gold Knight
February 19, 2007, 09:28 PM
@ Maddog Hayate: Thanks, and agreed on the story moving on. I'm excited to see what's next. I'm usually always that way whenever an arc is over, though... As for the Akatsuki paying attention to Deidara, I'm not sure they don't already; Hidan was just an exception. I think Shikaku and the other parents are still active (remember when Shikamaru's father was called away on a mission during the end of Part 1, just like Kakashi?) And I hope a journey for Sasuke is coming up, even a chapter or two would be good enough for me. I wonder if we'll actually get a Sasuke Gaiden though, showing us all what he did before the timeskip.

@ ophidial: You're welcome. I can't see Naruto angering the toads, although I could understand if they became a little nervous about the Kyuubi inside him. And true, you gotta award the victory to Naruto even though Kakashi finished him off.

@ Reaver Reload: Yeah! Dragonzair was right on the mark. Yeah, 18 pages - hopefully the next arc will be 19 pages each chapter, just like the old days. I miss that. I wouldn't be too surprised to see Hidan come back now that Kakuzu's definitely down. We still have a few things we haven't learned about him yet after all. Though I'm sure Shikamaru is going to be pissed if Hidan escapes. Thanks for reading and commenting!

@ Dragonzair: Heh, yeah, you were right. I just didn't think that Kishimoto was going to take Asuma and Kurenai's relationship to another level.

@ fatboy812000: Yeah, I could care less about if Naruto kills anybody. I never thought that Naruto was supposed to be a killer, anyway. But just throwing it out there anyway because I know a lot of fans do care. As for Kakashi Gaiden, I still think that it will be animated sooner or later, just as a flashback now when Kakashi meets Chiyo-baasma in Sunagakure.

@ Kadoman: Kishimoto always did say that he enjoyed Sasuke as a character (though he says it's a pain to draw him), so I wouldn't be surprised to see a Sasuke Gaiden eventually showing us what he had to go through during the timeskip. And you just knew Oro was going to come back one way or another! As for Asuma and Kurenai, yeah, it was a bit overdramatic in some ways, could've been done better. Still a good way for Shikamaru to grow up, though. Thanks for commenting :D

@ conan: thanks, and what exactly confused you about the chapter? You didn't quite say xD

@ glasskatana: you could be right, Kakuzu could have been dying and Kakashi was actually just being merciful there. I didn't see where Shikamaru put the cigarettes at Asuma's grave. You're very perceptive GKjr ^^

Perhaps there's a new seal on his neck...

@ juUnior: That's true, Shikamaru went in very prepared thanks to Asuma, and also with Kakashi's help as well. Good point.

@ kiddo7: I tend to doubt that any chuunin could just volunteer to be a jounin, I think they have to earn it through being in a whole lot of dangerous missions, ie. being in the ANBU or helping out a lot in a war, like Kakashi did at a young age. However having never heard of any Jounin Exams to this point, I don't think there's any Jounin Exams at all - that it's something that the Kages have to bestow on you when they deem it to be the right time.

And yeah, that would probably have made a better caption, darn that I didn't think of it ;) But my favorite scene by far certainly.

@ dfcarolinaguy: Cool ^^

@ SilveryShadows: No problem :D

@ chvis002: True, I don't want a Pokemon type of manga either, and I agree that summoning too much would be a little disorienting in that there'd not be any actual battles between shinobi without help of creatures. Perhaps that's why Kishimoto decided not to use the toads too much, but I wouldn't mind seeing them being summoned for travelling purposes, just as Kakashi always summons Pakkun to sniff out his targets.

Spoilers are a double-edged sword ;) It can excite you way ahead of time and by the time you get to read the chapter, it's not news anymore to you.

Shikamaru and Shikaku probably have similar IQs in my opinion. It's just that Shikaku also has more experience on his side.

Team 8? That'd be fun if Sasuke and Orochimaru encountered Team 8 on a whole different mission, unexpectedly. Thanks, chvis002 :)

kiddo7
February 19, 2007, 10:05 PM
I am sorry If i did not make myself clear enough, I meant that a ninja can opt not to become a jounin even if he is qualified. I did not mean to imply that all you need to do to get the jounin rank is ask. Naturally, there have to bee some requirements, like for instance the completion of a predesignated number of a-rank missions and demonstration of leadership capabilities. I was just thinking that it is probably done on a case by case basis and the final desicion is up to the ninja when and if he wants to do it.
I guess it would be like a regular cop applying to become a dedective or a test pilot applying to become an astronaut. something like that anyway.

Gold Knight
February 20, 2007, 12:30 AM
Ah, I understand kiddo7 ^^ Hmm, could be, but I think if any one refused the promotion, they'd be seen as slackers, probably...

Saifi
February 20, 2007, 12:46 AM
well o start off , v good koments GK , i esp liked adding the shippuden 001 + arc review

i agree with most of what u said up there , which is why i didnt komment cause well.. i didnt have much to add , but since the jounin discussion came up , i think its not a matter of refusing promotion but maybe not going out of ur way asking for more A and maybe S rank missions , n those who do enough of these are classified as jounin , n this way they can have a choice , cause i dont think its fair for shinobi's with families, or gfs or whatever , i mean not all people in konoha are nins are they , cause the u need more things to run a village than nin, gen, tai jutsus etc !

king_crimson-
February 20, 2007, 01:02 AM
And of course, how in the world Shikamaru was successful in getting Kakuzu's blood on Hidan's blade without him even suspecting
it's like when sakura only got some scratches from sasori's satetsu kaihou...i call it "luck of the hero" :P something that has absolutely no sense and no coherence, but has to be done, because the good guy should win without dying :)



Great review :D

Only one think I think other way around:

I woudn't compare this fights like that. For me, Shikamaru beat Hidan with mostly the helps of Asuma, as Sakura with Chiyo. If Shikamaru didn;t know about Hidans abilities, the fight would be differnt, and he probably would have much worse case scenario with his plan. So for me it's not like much of a difference in Sakuras of Shikamarus fight with Akatsuki. But defiently it's other way around with the time and chapters on that xD

what? shikamaru defeated hidan, Sakura didn't defeated sasori. It was chyo, sakura helped her. It's very much different. Sakura even knowing everything of sasori, could never ever even dreamed to shatter hiruko, alone. I agree that shikamaru would have no chance against hidan, without knowing him, and prepare a plan to defeat him. But still, he managed to force hidan to fall for his trap, and even use him to kill one of kakuzu's hearts...

well, hidan isn't exactly sasori, afterall(i agree that sasori seemed the strongest akatsuki thus far, infact the one who defeated him was chyo, and with sakura's help...)

i'm also disappointed in naruto not using kuchiyose no jutsu...he even spent 2 years with a man, jiraya, who is a true master of summonings(for those who don't like summonings, jiraya make a really massive use of summonings, and orochimaru too uses it alot...in every BIG fight with the strongest ninjas involved, there were always summonings...and i actually like it)

btw, great review GK :yeah:

only i'm a bit disappointed in sasuke...i want him as the last villain for naruto, so he should start carrying out ecatombes by now >__<

Chiru
February 20, 2007, 02:59 AM
7. Damn right we'll find out what he looks like in the future. He's the Akatsuki Leader--who coincidently is from the future. n_n

rokudai(ME)
February 20, 2007, 03:07 AM
Great review GK...i also agree with you about seeing more toads in the future...especially since i saw the older version of Gamakichi...i wonder what he does?...looking forward to reading you next review...keep up the good work...

Goji
February 20, 2007, 01:29 PM
GK, my man. Big :thumbs for yet another bunch of great comments. ^^

As usual, I mostly agree with you. I definitely would want to see Naruto fight together with his toad-buddies more, and also would love to see a few chapters from Sasuke's perspective.

'Cant wait for the next one!! (that goes for the anime as well!)

Iwanin
February 21, 2007, 04:25 AM
FINAL RATING ON IMMORTAL ARC: 3.5 of 5 - Definitely not the best arc in the whole series. But it's a step up from the Grass Arc (the last storyline), which I would've rated as a 3. My problems with the arc overall includes the obvious foreshadowing of Asuma's death, the timing of Team 7's appearance in the final battle which seemed contrary to Tsunade's deadline, and how some of the companions (ie. Izumo, Kotetsu, Ino, Chouji) never really seemed to have bigger parts in the battles with the Akatsuki. And of course, how in the world Shikamaru was successful in getting Kakuzu's blood on Hidan's blade without him even suspecting. We were also left without answers to Hidan's background. I'm really hoping that the next arc will be much better. I haven't really enjoyed Naruto the same way that I used to since the end of the Sasori Arc. But overall this arc was more exciting and interesting than the Grass Arc was, although it falls short of all the arcs from Part 1 (which I would have ranked all a 5, actually) as well as the Sasori Arc (probably a 4.5). There were a lot of positives such as Shikamaru's character development and Naruto's progress learning a new jutsu, and finally, of course, Hidan and Kakuzu were very entertaining as an Akatsuki duo. I'll miss them.


Things I've really liked about part 2

1. Akatsuki. Every single one of them is a keeper. Except for Tobi. Maybe.

2. Sakura kicking ass in the battle against Sasori.

3. Sai's foul mouth (but not Sai himself).

4. Yamato and his powers, and how they tie into the rest of the plot.

5. Orochi's battle with a kyuubified Naruto.

6. Sasuke being able to "see" Kyuubi and supress his powers.

Things I haven't liked:

1. How it doesn't make any sense that Chiyo waited until to end to bring out her ultimate puppets against Sasori (kinda messed up what until that point had been one hell of a battle). I mean, this isn't Mazinger Z.

2. The whole "Root" subplot, which has yet to go anywhere or serve any purpose other than explaining how no one knew who Sai was. And incidentally, the meaning of that panel where Yamato/Tenzou is fiddling with the Anbu costume worn by Sai's sempai...what was it, again?

3. Akatsuki's plans. The revelation was rather poorly done and does nothing to explain why all these outlaws would suddenly submit to AL. "Follow me and we'll rule the world twenty, thirty years from now" could hardly be said to be a tantalizing proposition.

4. The fact that we've yet to get a single explanation on several mayor plot points. The only mayor "answer" we've gotten is Akatsuki's plans and y'all know how I feel about that one. The Fourth's name, his relationship (if any) to Naruto, how Kakashi got the Mangekyou, the Uchiha secret/curse, the "other" mangekyou user, to name a few... He also hasn't developed Naruto and Sakura's relationship very much so far.

5. The ludicrous notion that all that's needed to bring Sasuke back is more firepower. Oh, I'm sure Naruto's new jutsu will knock some sense into Sasuke... if it doesn't kill him first, of course.

Overall, I still enjoy the series and I still think there's a lot of potential here, but it's been going on for seven years now. If Kishi would just start answering questions and answering them well, and developing episodes around these answers, I think fans would be much more into it. It's like the rate of plot per action has gotten to the point where we're getting three times as much action as in part one, but not even half the plot and character development.

Things like the Hyuuga clan, The remaining Jinchuuriki, Naruto's relationship to Sakura, the Root subplot, Shikamaru and Temari, Hidan and Kakuzu's villages and background... things that could *really* be developed are just dropped, and instead we get incredibly well drawn but ultimately predictable content.

kadoman
February 21, 2007, 05:31 AM
Super great post Iwanin, I agree with you word-for-word. :thumbs

I don't rate the entire arc as highly as GK. For me, the only good thing was Sasuke's reappearance (people will say I'm biased, but if they think hard about it - it really was the best thing about this arc) and even then, I don't think Kishi handled it well at all.

Although it was good to see Sakura in action, it was one of the more unconvincing plot moves in the manga. Sakura has never kicked anyone's butt before, or since, yet this one time, she takes out a ninja the calibre of Sasori - who took out an entire village on his own? I thought it was a cheap way to lose Sasori, who was an interesting character and could have served a better purpose.

I especially agree with you about Sai's intro which was a complete and utter waste of time and has so far served absolutely no purpose to the overall story that I can see (except to show that Naruto still has the ability to 'convert' people).

For me, this was the arc where I cared the least for the manga and my care factor dropped to an all time low with the Hidan/Kakuzu fight that was stretched waaay beyond its natural lifespan.

Still, for as many complaints I have about, I have equally as many highlights and truly wonderful moments, so I do still enjoy Naruto and won't ever stop reading it. But like you say Iwanin, enough is enough Kishi; it's been 7 years; start resolving some issues already!

juUnior
February 21, 2007, 09:37 AM
Still, for as many complaints I have about, I have equally as many highlights and truly wonderful moments, so I do still enjoy Naruto and won't ever stop reading it. But like you say Iwanin, enough is enough Kishi; it's been 7 years; start resolving some issues already!


I agree on part that I also enjoy Naruto, and even if sometimes is lacking something, if I will take whole chapters and whole thingy, than Naruto is the best ^^
About the second, I think that there are answers to be told to us via manga, but seriously, there isn;t too much of that (I mean this seriosuly thoughts, which are theorys for them, not such as mother of Lee..).
And superb spoiler is true, so now it will be cool :D



what? shikamaru defeated hidan, Sakura didn't defeated sasori. It was chyo, sakura helped her. It's very much different.

You don't get my point ;p I know, that SHikamaru defeated Hidan, thats true. But like eveyrone says, that Sasori was deafeted by Chiyo and Sakura, I think that Hidan was deafeted by Asuma and Shikamaru, even, if the one, who ended evything was Shika ^^

Gold Knight
February 22, 2007, 03:04 AM
Haha. Okay, I won't comment on the chapter any further because I already saw the spoilers, but I"m going to respond to Iwanin's great post regardless (good way to pass the time until the next chapter comes out!)

Pete, I agree with your 6 points for why you liked Part 2, I'm pretty much in complete agreement with you there. So moving on to:



Things I haven't liked:

1. How it doesn't make any sense that Chiyo waited until to end to bring out her ultimate puppets against Sasori (kinda messed up what until that point had been one hell of a battle). I mean, this isn't Mazinger Z.

Well, if you look at the way that fight progressed, we had:

1) Chiyo and Sakura trying to break the Hiruko shell. Success.
2) Chiyo and Sakura having to fend off Sasori's Kazekage puppet with Sasori's parents. Failure.
3) Sakura having to defeat the Kazekage puppet on her own. Success.
4) Sakura having to keep Sasori himself from killing Chiyo. Success.
5) Chiyo finally resorting to her "trump card" - her puppets, via Sasori's "trump card" of mass puppets. Success.
6) Sakura and Chiyo teaming up to render Sasori's body immobile. Failure (because of the jump from puppet to puppet).
7) Sakura having to stop Sasori again from trying to kill Chiyo. Success (though Sakura suffered a whole lot of pain for it.)
8) Chiyo finally having to defeat Sasori with Sasori's parents again. Success (though Sasori at this point seemed to hesitate at seeing his parents fly at him and allow himself to be defeated.)

I think the whole battle was 'testing' and 'exhausting' each other's bag of tricks to the point where they would feel confident it was a good time to use their trump cards, because y'know, Chiyo and Sakura would have been absolutely screwed if the Kazekage puppet had rendered all of Chiyo's "trump card" puppets immobile and broken them.



2. The whole "Root" subplot, which has yet to go anywhere or serve any purpose other than explaining how no one knew who Sai was. And incidentally, the meaning of that panel where Yamato/Tenzou is fiddling with the Anbu costume worn by Sai's sempai...what was it, again?

Agreed here though. I had higher hopes for that little sidestory and it was a big disappointment, one reason the Grass arc is my least favorite storyarc.



3. Akatsuki's plans. The revelation was rather poorly done and does nothing to explain why all these outlaws would suddenly submit to AL. "Follow me and we'll rule the world twenty, thirty years from now" could hardly be said to be a tantalizing proposition.

Well, here I think the Akatsuki themselves, being able to take down the bijuus almost single-handedly at times, were enough to make any one believe that they could fulfill their promises. It's kinda like how Hitler convinced Germany that he can make them powerful through his charisma alone.



4. The fact that we've yet to get a single explanation on several mayor plot points. The only mayor "answer" we've gotten is Akatsuki's plans and y'all know how I feel about that one. The Fourth's name, his relationship (if any) to Naruto, how Kakashi got the Mangekyou, the Uchiha secret/curse, the "other" mangekyou user, to name a few... He also hasn't developed Naruto and Sakura's relationship very much so far.

Well, I think Kishimoto's planning to reveal all these answers in a later part, NOT Part 2, but I would like to hear a few more questions answered, too, besides just how Kakashi gained his Sharingan in the Gaiden. Definitely the matter of how Kakashi got his MS. But I think Kishimoto's saving that up for a later point because he's afraid it'll spoil that Sasuke probably got the MS too himself.



5. The ludicrous notion that all that's needed to bring Sasuke back is more firepower. Oh, I'm sure Naruto's new jutsu will knock some sense into Sasuke... if it doesn't kill him first, of course.

Well, I can understand that. Naruto lost their battle the last time, and I'm sure he felt like if he had at least proved to Sasuke that he would have been a powerful ally by actually winning their battle, Sasuke wouldn't have felt like he had to leave Konohagakure to learn how to be more powerful from other people. I see it as a sort of "proving Konohagakure's power" to Sasuke.



Overall, I still enjoy the series and I still think there's a lot of potential here, but it's been going on for seven years now. If Kishi would just start answering questions and answering them well, and developing episodes around these answers, I think fans would be much more into it. It's like the rate of plot per action has gotten to the point where we're getting three times as much action as in part one, but not even half the plot and character development.

Things like the Hyuuga clan, The remaining Jinchuuriki, Naruto's relationship to Sakura, the Root subplot, Shikamaru and Temari, Hidan and Kakuzu's villages and background... things that could *really* be developed are just dropped, and instead we get incredibly well drawn but ultimately predictable content.


I do agree that Kishimoto is very vague on a lot of things though, and he really should expain them a little more speedily. It's a bit frustrating in some cases, especially when Hidan's background wasn't even elaborated on.

Iwanin
February 22, 2007, 03:31 AM
Haha. Okay, I won't comment on the chapter any further because I already saw the spoilers, but I"m going to respond to Iwanin's great post regardless (good way to pass the time until the next chapter comes out!)

Pete, I agree with your 6 points for why you liked Part 2, I'm pretty much in complete agreement with you there. So moving on to:

Well, if you look at the way that fight progressed, we had:

1) Chiyo and Sakura trying to break the Hiruko shell. Success.
2) Chiyo and Sakura having to fend off Sasori's Kazekage puppet with Sasori's parents. Failure.
3) Sakura having to defeat the Kazekage puppet on her own. Success.
4) Sakura having to keep Sasori himself from killing Chiyo. Success.


When Sasori's using the Third, Chiyo loses her ability to manipulate puppets with two hands, because her "puppet" hand winds up clogged with iron sand.

But the moment Sakura smashes the Third, Chiyo should be able to recover her puppet hand and use the 10 masterpieces. Instead, she just stands there leaving Sakura to do all the fighting, despite the fact that there's a time limit on the antivenom. It's only after Sasori reconstructs himself that Chiyo brings out the pupets.

That's what I'm referring to. :)

Anal retentive on my part? Perhaps. But you're reading the chapter going "OMG, Chiyo's got no more puppets, only Sakura can attack" and then she goes "Oh, wait - yeah, I actually have more puppets."

It's like suddenly deciding Kakuzu has ten hearts instead of five (although Kishi did seem to add one more).



It's kinda like how Hitler convinced Germany that he can make them powerful through his charisma alone.


Yes, but ridiculous though it may be, the notion "we will create a superior human race which will thrive in utopia" is far more enticing than "We shall rule the world! Eventually...maybe...kinda...within a couple of decades. You guys will still all be my subordinates anyway, though." I'm sure every missing nin out there is just *dying* to be AL's bitch.

Well, I guess you *do* get to paint your toe nails and look badass at the same time... ;)

Gold Knight
February 22, 2007, 03:55 AM
When Sasori's using the Third, Chiyo loses her ability to manipulate puppets with two hands, because her "puppet" hand winds up clogged with iron sand.

But the moment Sakura smashes the Third, Chiyo should be able to recover her puppet hand and use the 10 masterpieces. Instead, she just stands there leaving Sakura to do all the fighting, despite the fact that there's a time limit on the antivenom. It's only after Sasori reconstructs himself that Chiyo brings out the pupets.

That's what I'm referring to. :)

Anal retentive on my part? Perhaps. But you're reading the chapter going "OMG, Chiyo's got no more puppets, only Sakura can attack" and then she goes "Oh, wait - yeah, I actually have more puppets."

True, you have a point there.



It's like suddenly deciding Kakuzu has ten hearts instead of five (although Kishi did seem to add one more).

Does seem like it! >.>



Yes, but ridiculous though it may be, the notion "we will create a superior human race which will thrive in utopia" is far more enticing than "We shall rule the world! Eventually...maybe...kinda...within a couple of decades. You guys will still all be my subordinates anyway, though." I'm sure every missing nin out there is just *dying* to be AL's bitch.

Well, I guess you *do* get to paint your toe nails and look badass at the same time... ;)


Most of these guys seem to have had subordinates for quite a while, though, most of them (except for Tobi) aren't far off from Orochimaru in having a lot of cronies under their command. I'm sure they already had connections. And heck, I don't think they even tell their subordinates their plan - they just now told Hidan after all.