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In the light of the recent events in the naruto universe, I have yet again been reminded by a character held in very high esteem, one with a strong, healthy fan base. All brains and no brawl, the ninja in question is Shikamaru. Possessing one of the most efficient strategical minds in naruto, his analytical capabilities unquestioned, his name (altough sometimes forgotten - I had a friend who called him Shikachimaru) praised far and wide by many other characters, including teamates Chouji and Kotetsu, Asuma-sensei and Sarutobi Sandaime himself, Shikamaru has effervescently been glorified by the writer of the story many times over.
His backstory, altough simple and honestly quite boring, has somewhat warmed some of us to this laid-back, calculating embodiment of intelligence. Most of us certainly find a certain liking to his personality, connecting ourselves with his exaggerated laziness and sense of philosophy. Some people even tell me he makes them feel old, but perhaps they've just been confined in a nursing home for too long.
Back on topic; thank you for sticking with me through this lenghtly introduction, by the way XD
I feel that a lot of effort has been put in naruto to ground the characters in the story, to give them a more "human" feeling. Of course, encompassing a human being in a 2D manga strip would prove difficult, yet the author does this very sucessfully by showing us unique traits to each characters that we can all relate to. For example, "loneliness" is the main theme of many of the shinobis, as is envy and hate for Sasuke or shyness for Hina-..oh shit, I'm wandering off-topic again >.>
Anyways, it all comes down to the principle attributes of Shikamaru, that are overly present and even repetitive sometimes: his intelligence and loyalty. The latter can't be stressed enough by the author. He must have an obsession of reminding us of Shika's unwavering loyalty. He put so much emphasis on this, that he even tried to make us lose faith in this lazy shinobi during the invasion of Konoha arc - just to betray our first impressions and make us see what a real hero Shikamaru really is. Countless times afterwards, is his commitment to his friends referenced, such as in the save Sasuke arc, where his "leave no man behind" philosophy had to be put aside in order to accomplish a mission. A mission that ultimately failed; resulting in a harsh scolding by his father for leaving every single man behind.
But our brave little boy learned his lesson, or so we can assume. Three years later, Shikamaru returns as a brash young man, loyal to his old friend Naruto, and to the death to his sensei. Sporting a chuunin flask vest and the same old haircut, his accoutrement is unimpressive, but typical to a character that doesn't care much. That aside tough, I've noticed that once again, are his intellectual capabilities excessively displayed.
Actually, I'm begining to think that Kishimoto himself got lazy, and just decided to show us some panels of previous chapters, with the excuse of Shikamaru re-thinking over a hundred times something that supposedly happened mere seconds ago >.>
In my humble perspective, that was some poor writting on his part. I was expecting something much more out of the ordinary, something that would've made me remember why I think naruto is such a brilliant manga. But guess what ?
Right. So what I want to know is, what do you guys think of shikamaru ? Abrupt and awkwardly written, or masterpiece of the naruto universe ? Stimulating and interesting, good supporting character, or "meh" ?
And stay on topic XD!!!!
Shikamaru is not a hero.
That much people should know by now. His skills always take him up to a point, and then his enemy reveals a trump...
In this case...
EVERYTHING WENT ACCORDING TO PLAN...
In this situation... much like many others...
Shikamaru happened to come up against his "worst possible opponent".
I think that it more of a problem in this manga than anything... how perfectly one-sided some fights look in hindsight (look the the entirety of the Chuunin Exam Tournament for proof....lol)
But we have to remember one thing...
Shikamaru DOESNT HAVE TO WIN RIGHT NOW...
This is nowhere near the final battle, so really... don't worry about it.
Characters like Shikamaru and Lee will continue to lose... so that their final victory will be that much more grandiose and fulfilling.
While it feels like Kishimoto is being lazy... I feel that he is really setting the stage for the final battles...
The sense of agitation you feel now, will be transformed into a mixture of relief and happiness.
I guarantee it.
I really like Shikamaru. I think he is the OG pimp of the Narutoverse. He's a very dynamic character with a lot of potential.
And we've got to remember, Shikamaru is the self proclaimed #1 coward, yet he shows increadible bravery when necessary. AND! He's got that whole Temari love interest thing going on.
I hope we get to see a lot more of him in the future. I think he (and the rest of his team) could really shine, yet i think they wont have the opportunity so much unless it's in the anime because there is SOOOO much else going on. GUH! Naruto should never end. *nod* XD
He's just a great character dang it!!!
I just find it somewhat surprising that he has not won a single battle since he beat Temari.
[b][font=verdana][color=green][size=1]It's a good change.Originally Posted by kiddo7
shika has developed.. but, still not tooo... much..
when he beat tenmari.. i couldn't read his way of thinking..
but, when he faced hidan..
i would expect more from shika then..
not only how to counter hidan jutsu's.. but i expect that he could create some other strategy, or opening for a back up plan..
kishisama is under performed this time..
so.. shikamaru.. i have great expectation 4 you ....
c'mon kishisama.. !!!
I think many get disappointed by the fight between Hidan and Shikamaru, because it didn't show the intelligence that we were expecting by Shikamaru.
The ability to believe that your opponent will live after having a second deathblow heaped upon him, especially having his head cut of... is NOT intelligence. Quite simply, it's near insanity to think that...Originally Posted by Luckas04
I believe that Shikamaru's body lets him down again...
Which is the part of him which is NOT elite. But considering he IS going up against the Akatsuki, this is to be expected.
Those guys just have far too much experience, and chakra gained from it...
True. But it's somewhat unfair to say that. No offense meant ofcourse. Shikamaru's greatest ability is his brain. His fast in perceiving things and also a calm and calculated ninja. But unfortunately, he lost all of his cool when Asuma is on the verge of death.Originally Posted by DarkManSharingan32
True also for the Akatsuki opponents. Judging on experience, he's too weak to fight against an Akatsuki.But, I'm impressed that his brain already read what secret lies on Hidan's jutsus. Unfortunately also, he didn't saw what is coming after him.
Team Shikamaru up with someone like Naruto and you have the ultimate team.
I like the point that u made; yeap i too feel that Kishimoto is setting up the stage for these charcters final battles even though its really slow. I like shikamaru's character again it doesnt matter if he looses or wins its abt how he plans his battles that impresses me the most.Originally Posted by DarkManSharingan32
But I insist, Shikamaru is a hero, just like Naruto. At least in my book. I mean he selflessly almost sacrificed himself for Naru to move on and bring back Sasuke. Twice.Originally Posted by DarkManSharingan32
And for me, anyone who does that is indeed a hero.Originally Posted by Rampage
But it is fact we can't deny that he is a coward. A heroic coward.
In my book all chracters (Neiji, rock lee, garaa, naruto, chouji, shikamaru, kiba, etc) are heroes
According to one definition, courage is fear with a breave face. So if shikamaru is a coward and nontheless he is willing and able to sacrifice himself for others and therefore become a hero, then technically he should be called a courageous Hero, and not a cowardly one.Originally Posted by ibra87