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"Going back to what Orochimaru said earlier, can someone elaborate on the whole 'Madara has been resurrected and has begun his genocide of all shinobi' thing..."
"Yeah, well, he stabbed me too..but here I am anyway. I suggest you just go with the flow as well."
There's tons to Sasuke's Reply, so I'm going to skip the formalities and get straight to the previous poll results that way we can dig in. Last review I asked if you guys were or weren't satisfied with how the Valley of the End bout. The majority of you were, and now there's another big event for everyone to get all critical about. Sasuke's reply...
Naruto 627 Sasuke's Reply
The images in this review are credited to Mangastream.
Having given Sasuke his requested answers, Hashirama shifts focus back to the battle at hand, which is...you know...happening right now and with great impact to the future of everyone. No worries. Sasuke explains the mechanics of Madara's plot and mentions the irony that the person who most shared Hashirama's POV was Itachi, and Uchiha. This prompts more wisdom as Tobirama points out that there were other Uchiha who shared his loyalty and whom he respected, despite his appearance. Men like Kagami from his squad, who later fathered Shisui of the Mirage. Tobirama explains that he didn't discriminate against the Uchiha specifically. Rather, he kept an eye on all clans who agitated the village, and the Uchiha happened to do so often, despite his attempts to tie them more strongly to Konoha.
This leads to a discussion of Hiruzen's inherited will of fire, along with Kagami, Shisui, and Danzo, who despite being a jerk, still clearly cared about Konoha. Hiruzen starts a pity party that Minato then hijacks, and Orochimaru rubs some salt in the wound about how some thought Orochimaru would have made a better Fourth. He is, after all, the only one of them still alive today.
In the end, Sasuke decides to join the battle alongside the Hokage.
Orochimaru agrees to follow Sasuke's lead, unbinding the Hokage. When asked why, he mentions that he's interested to see where Sasuke's path leads since Kabuto, who followed his own to the letter, failed. Suigetsu contemplates escape, but his attempt is foiled by Karin who abruptly shows up. Her anger at being betrayed is easily assuaged by a quick apology from Sasuke. And with that, everyone's ready to head into battle.
As it has been the past few chapters, the character's reaction faces remain telling and amusing. Just the scene where everyone's waiting for Sasuke to speak was expressive, everyone waiting for a reply. But we had much more: regret filled Hokage, Tobirama embarrassed of his brother, a cheesy Hashirama, Suigetsu's dread, Orochimaru's smugness, Karin's quick change of moods, and Sasuke actually being a little weirded out by how attached she is to him.
Another element of note this week was Sasuke's Itachi collage while he considered his options. The collage which is the static visual equivalent of a film montage, but that reads differently on paper than in motion. Where on film you have successive scenes shown one after another, sometimes at varying speeds or deft editing to disorient the audience, with the collage, you are bombarded with numerous images at once with no set path with which to traverse them. While not very artfully assembled here, that messiness...the haphazard way the montage was thrown together...underlines how overwhelming those memories are for Sasuke. If there's any one moment that helps sell his decision this chapter, it's that one double-page spread.
I've been plenty busy the past couple of weeks, which has made getting these reviews out in a timely manner somewhat difficult. But I had such a blast reading Naruto 627 that it wasn't too hard at all.
In fact, the chapter goes out of its way to provide quick resolution and tidily packed up themes. So let's start with the big one. Sasuke decides, after hearing Hashirama's story and remembering Itachi's unconditional acceptance in death, to join the fight so that his brother's memory and inherited will won't be erased by Madara's infinite genjutsu. In the end, it wasn't Naruto who brought him around, though there might be opportunity there for the two to work out desegregating the various clans. It was Hashirama, whose will of fire was inherited most intensely by Itachi. It took a lifetime for Hashirama to understand what a shinobi was and decide that he would strike down any of his brothers to protect the dream he had for Konoha, but Itachi came to that conclusion early on, which further supports both Hiruzen and my claim that Itachi was easily a Hokage level candidate.
Throughout this decision, some themes were repeated. Namely, regret over the past and the burden of responsibility. Each of the Hokage has it in some way and form. Hashirama regrets being unable to save his friend and perhaps helping initiate the downfall of the Uchiha through his unbridled naivety. Tobirama tried to take a middle road between his brother's naivety and Madara's skepticism, but his conclusion made many the Uchiha feel more secluded from the village. Hiruzen looks at the fruits of his labor, Orochimaru, the Uchiha massacre, Minato's untimely death, and feels a failure. And Minato feels guilty for his brief tenure, believing he may have been able to avert the Uchiha massacre had he lived longer.
Orochimaru and Itachi get in on that action too. While within Kabuto, Orochimaru witnessed what his nihilistic philosophy led when taken to the extreme. With hindsight, both he and Itachi wonder what might have been or might be if they had placed faith in the future. There are levels of miscalculation present and Sasuke seems to respond to them. No longer is the Senju and Uchiha history a black and white affair of grievances and reprisals. It's full of well meaning but flawed people.
Then, of course, there's the theme of inheritance that's always been prominent in Naruto. Hashirama's will was inherited by Itachi and Shisui. Tobirama's by Kagami, Danzo, and Hiruzen in various ways. Hashirama's compassion by Hiruzen. Hiruzen's will by his students and Minato. And Orochimaru's by Kabuto, Karin, Suigetsu, and Juugo.
This lineage of succession doesn't just create a sense of purpose and continuity. By examining their ideals as claimed by their successors, each of these predecessors is able to spot the flaws within and hopefully course correct if they're caught in time.
But besides all that, 627 remained a breezy, quotable, at times humorous read full of small surprises, so it should come as no wonder that I'm giving* the chapter a
5 out of 5
*kind of begrudgingly. The last few chapters have been so consistently good that I almost want to downgrade the rating here out of guilt for so many consecutive fives. But given that I'm grading each chapter against expectation (past chapters), this is still very much better than the serviceable and merely good chapters that this long "Fourth Shinobi World War" arc has produced.
Well isn't this something. Only one of my predictions didn't pan out: Minato mentioning masked-face Uchiha during the Kyuubi attack that preceded his death. However, Kishimoto wrapped things up nicely. Sasuke decided. There was some last minute wisdom. And everyone...literally everyone present...decided to go off to war.
This should be some battle. Naruto, Sasuke, the previous Hokage, the would-have-been-Hokage-if-not-evil Orochimaru, and his choice experiments on the stage. I have a feeling that we'll be seeing a Juubi-jinchuriki (my money's on Obito not Madara for this) soon. The only thing missing now are the current Kages. Speaking of which, it's been awhile since we've seen those guys, hasn't it?
So, the question here is whether Kishimoto can maintain the quality that's been present in the last tankobon worth of material and how he plans to transition into the next mini-arc with 628.
One Line Reviews
- Bleach 533 takes the long route to its inevitable destination. Soul Society, Hollows, Urahara, Quincy, and Aizen intersect in various ways, sometimes without realizing it, in this slow-burning but entertaining chapter.
- One Piece 705 is one busy chapter. Eiichiro Oda seems to delight in taking an already complicated web of motivations and movers and twisting it even further. This chapter touches in with pretty much everyone and introduces even more new characters, one of which is pretty big.
- One Shot, One Opportunity is in full swing in Tower of God S02 Ch58. Everyone's making big moves and risks missing their chance to get into the tournament. But the real draw is the cliffhanger ending that reunites Baam with another Season 1 character.
- Best of the Week is a toss up between Tower of God and One Piece for both being so wild and unpredictable. There’s this since in each that anything can happen and that the authors have a master plot that they’re concealing with some well placed misdirection.
Yes this is a 5/5 and a huge pay of from an already entertaining piece of manga. I had my reservations from the begining, like the Uzumaki shrine suddenly appearing for plot convenience but I am willing to forgive that. I only have one gripe with this manga right now and I will leave that out as it does not effect this piece in form of discussion.
This turn in Sasuke didn't feel like a shocker at all. He finally got all the pieces of the puzzle put in place, he had been fooled time and time again before and now he finally got the truth and acted upon it. His turn is to what he believes is true so when bad people tell him something he thinks is the truth he will ofcourse go down that path and with all the information he had it was really not that strange.
I find this chapter to be hugely satisfying. This is in my opinion Kishi at his best. The build up and giving the readers the chance to let their imagination run wild is a great card to play and he does it very well. The question for me though is if he will be able to live up to the hype he now has created.
Will the upcoming epic battle really be epic? Will there be turns that downgrades or upgrades? I don't know but I am hopeful.
5/5 for sure, I almost feel like upping the rating a bit but a perfect score will just have to do I guess.
The only downside is Karin appearing again......personal bias I guess, I don't like her at all ^^ but it did get me thinking, a child betwen Sasuke and Karin, that would produce a sage right? hmmmm
Ladies and gentlemen this is what we call character development.
It's only not "believable" for people who hate that development.
Last edited by Ryr; April 12, 2013 at 02:45 AM.
great review, I think it was too fast,though. I'd have pointed out that Minato stated he was gonna give a gift to his son,maybe a hint to his half of the fox ?
Nice review as always.
This chapter left a few questions open.
Why would Orochimaru has a change of heart all of a sudden, his reason does not sound convincing.
As itachi stated once Sasuke might get twisted again if he hears out Madara.
So will Sasuke maintain his senses when he hears Obito or Madara?
How will Kishi fit a believable fight for these characters.
As it stands now Naruto by himself is able to stand toe to toe with Obito and Madara with help of other Shinobis. Only one of the hokages joining the fray as a zombie will change the balance. Now a group of minimum S and God class Shinobis are joining against Madara and Obito.
I think Karin might have some revenge plot in her mind. I suspect she might probably side with Oro and Oro might have some plan like take Madara's eyes and Zetsu's body, then he has the ultimate body and the eyes he had wished for.
Probably Oro might become the final villian after achieving this feat. He could probably become jin of Jyuubi.
With this Sasuke and Naruto would have to join hands to fight against one common villian. All hokage's soul might get relieved seeing their village in good hands.
Madara might finally see how his life would have been if he had put little more trust, his soul might find peace seeing how Sasuke and Naruto work together who resemble Madara and Hashi respectively.
no naruto cant stand toe to toe with obito and madara otherwise their is no need of the others
I DONT THINK this is the sasuke he is likely to change his mind after listening to madara
do you think the hokage are all secretly happy about the massacre of the uchiha clan.
at least there is only sasuke left there is no more trouble or looking over the shoulder or spying on the other clan because they all hate uchiha not loved them. sasuke made the wrong choice
Great review, my only gripe is what the heck was Obito thinking starting the war WITHOUT Kabuto in the first place. There has to be more here. Madara, Obito and Juubi vs everyone else (2 jinchuriki and everyone) seemed like an uneven match to begin with, siding with the ninjas.
But now...what the heck, I almost want to root for a bad guy twist because it seems so lopsided. Oro, Sasuke, and the past 4 Hokage including Hashi, unbound and ET!? lol It'll be hard to build up the intensity now, though the excitement is there!
We really didn't hear about the current Kages for a long time :O I almost forgot about them actually.
Secondly, I think he has come around like Sasuke, only his transformation was alluded to rather than explicitly stated. We've seen from flashbacks that he wasn't purely and always evil. He's ambitious and lacks morals, yes. But he was also lost, prideful, and cynical about the state of the world. Inside Kabuto he saw the fruits of that labor, after Sasuke, Itachi, Hiruzen, and Tsunade taught him a lesson in humility. Considering the aforementioned along with the hints that he was, regardless of his posturing, conflicted about his decision to destroy Konoha (Sasuke's speech and also him tearing up before fighting Hiruzen), and I don't think it's too far to say he's turned a new leaf.
This new Orochimaru might not be "good", but he's willing to admit he's failed and that a better path may be open to him. Could he be the final villain? I"m not sure. I kind of have a feeling that he and Tsunade might die together when all is said and done.
I had a feeling that we wouldn't wait long for your review this week. The chapter begs to be talked about haha.
Reading it has clearified an already clear picture that I had already gotten from reading this chapter. I also share the opinion that the 2 page spread of sasuke and the flashbacks of itachi was something special. When I got to it I almost read every single flashback panel in the background and savoring the last few moments of the almost decade wait and specualtion and hope for sasuke's future before I clicked and read the following page because I knew the following page would be a sigh of fuckin finally !
I made the below prediction a bit over 2 months ago
I'm quite satisfied with how close I got with Orochimaru having his moment with Hiruzen although I thought that the 'moment' would have been more thought out by Kishimoto which in my defense probably should have been...Quote:
I also concur with a few people that Minato's gift to naruto is probably the second half of the kyuubi even though they might not really need the extra help.
I wonder how Naruto will react to his loved ones alive (Sas too lol). Too bad I don't think Jiarya will ever be brought back. Haven't been this excited with Naruto in a long while, though I still think EMS Madara has his hands full already, now to add more to the mix...I can't imagine it's a challenge. But most likely Hashi will actually want to do a 1v1 with Madara to settle an old score, and they'll both die with their friendship, forever fighting in the afterlife.
What I find interesting is Oro's comment when he sees Karin. That another one of his experiments bore fruit. Does he mean her in general? Or does it have something to do with her Sasuke obsession? Aw shit, if Sasuke and Karin end up together then Sakura will end up with Naruto instead of Hinata and yet again a Ship I really like gets sunk. Be nice to actually have one sail someday.
I said in the discussion thread, but I'll say it here too. I think that Naruto did have something to do with Sasuke's change of heart. If you think about it, he and Naruto were in the same situation as Hashirama and Madara. But Naruto made a choice that Hashirama didn't. Rather than loose and let his friend destroy the village, or kill his friend to save the village, Naruto states they'll die fighting if he can't change Sasuke's mind.
I like the change of the story and reasonable rating black, i'd give this a 5/5 too. Lets just hope that sasuke can keep it together when he fights madara.