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"Until my revival, you are Uchiha Madara"
This has been a strange couple of months for Naruto. We've had reveals, art, and plotting that have run the gamut from excellent to ill advised and a plot 'twist' that was initially quite controversial. This week's chapter follows two in which my enjoyment was hampered by oddities in the art. In Dream World, those problems have been smoothed over (a cloaked, exoskeleton Obito looks far better with his mask unraveled into a spiked collar) and the pacing is a bit off. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
Naruto 606 The Dream World
The images in this review are credited to Mangastream.
The first half of this week's chapter focuses on Obito taking in the aftermath of Rin's death. Surrounded by death, he's unable to even touch her at first because of his space-time ninjutsu. When he does cradle her lifeless body in his arms, he remembers Madara's goal of a perfect world built through genjutsu and promises to create a world where he can meet Rin again. Then, saddled with a righteous cause, he marches back to Madara ready to fulfill his role in the plan.
After making sure Obito wasn't followed or found out in his rampage, Madara brings Obito into a realm of genjutsu in which the caster's will can create anything by borrowing from the Gedo Mazo's power. To create an illusion large enough, the genjutsu must be cast on the Ten-Tails' shell: the moon. The Gedo is something Madara unsealed when he awakened the Rinnegan near death, many years after he retrieved Hashirama's DNA at the Valley of the End. From the statue, Madara cultivated the Hashirama clone from which the Zetsu are created, and he can impart his will (using chakra receivers created from will and the Gedo) unto them creating Black Zetsu.
Madara also teaches Obito forbidden Uchiha jutsu, Sage of the Six Path jutsu, and yin and yang release before disconnecting from the statue and dying. The chapter ends with an older Obito and Zetsu meeting with Nagato under the guise of 'Uchiha Madara'.
I mentioned it in my intro, but the below comparison of this arc's main character from 604 and 606 should illustrate just how important character design can be into pulling you into or out of a scene.
I've been down about the last few chapters, so I want to get all the stuff I didn't like out of the way first. For starters, there's the pacing. We speed through Obito's formative years here very rapidly. In the chapter's beginning, Rin is dead. By the chapter's end, Obito's recruiting Nagato for the cause. And everything in the middle is glossed over. Madara imparts some wisdom. Obito trains. Plans are made. Madara dies.
A lot of this interim action is important to Obito's credibility, but strangely glossed over. This is a character who at some point fights Minato and manipulates the Fourth Mizukage and questions have been raised about how quickly Obito grew in skill to do so. Yet Madara downloads some knowledge into Obito, Obito masters it mostly off page, and then we're expected to accept he's a Tobi level badass now. Likewise, he jumps into his alliance with Madara extremely quickly, letting go of his connections to reality without deeper reflection.
Given that the previous chapter felt so slight, I think Kishimoto might have been better off tightening up the fight in 605, eliminating the unnecessary flashback's to Madara's warnings just a chapter ago, and throwing in Obito's decision as a capper. Then he would have had more room to expand on Obito's tutelage this chapter. I'd have to say that so far, Obito's story pales in comparison to the recent histories of Kabuto or Itachi we've seen.
That said, kudos to Kishimoto for giving us so many answers upfront. How did Obito become so strong? He inherited Madara's knowledge. What is Zetsu? Clones of Hashirama who occasionally have Madara's will injected into them. How did Madara come by his abilities? By stealing Senju DNA during his famous last battle with Hashirama and then waiting 'til he was near death for the effects to kick in. Nagato's Rinnegan? Actually those were Madara's implanted in a useful Senju candidate.
I'm not crazy about the last one and I would have liked to know why Rin died (seriously, does Obito not care about the details because dreamworld?), but appreciate the quick clip of answers. Naruto 606 Dream World gets a ...
3 out of 5.
Next week looks like it'll be the Adventures of the Young Akatsuki, so it's possible that the week after we'll get a tale about Obito's tenure as shadow Mizukage the week after as I predicted. As for Nagato, I'm willing to bet that he's the one who reveals to nagato how to make the most out of the Rinnegan by cultivating Six Path bodies.
One Line Reviews
- The humans in Gantz 372 are left shaken and feeling isolated after their discussion with higher-dimensional beings. The chapter's a fitting end to a series of brutal story arcs, but provides little hint for what's in store next.
- In the wonderful Billy Bat 87, the murderous father has met his end for his sins, but the son's fate is still undecided. Will the mother's hopes, passed down among generations of mangaka, be able to reach her son in the future before it's too late?
- One Piece 685 continues to set up the conflicts that'll come to a head in the arc's conclusion, but also features a strange, sweet, and funny tale of a kidnapped boy becoming a dragon.
- Though it's more slight than a normal chapter, Bleach 512 features Ichigo's return and the moving last words of Byakuya Kuchiki.
- Tower of God S2 Ch36, my Pick of the Week, offers up a break in the regular story to give us an extended flashback to Baam's slayer training. The chapter reveals more about the supporting FUG characters than it does about Baam, but it's fascinating all the same.
Thanks for the good review and your take on this week's chapter..just wanted to add a small correction though which is that the ten-tail's shell is not the moon but the gedo mazou..the moon was infact the sealing stone within which the gedo mazou/ten-tails shell was sealed..so perhaps the ten-tail should look more or less like the gedo mazou itself with tails extended and the wooden appearance smoothened..
Secondly as an extension to your prediction, this chapter also cleared doubts that it was not the real Madara who was controlling Yagura but it very well was obito himself..the hairline, the right sharingan shown in Kisame's memory confirms it further[the real Madara didnt have a right eye but obito has]..obito was merely introducing himself to kisame as Madara just the way he did with Nagato, thus contradicting some of the popular views that kisame had met the real Madara then and obito was casting genjutsu [such that his face resembles the real Madara kisame had seen previously] over kisame the second time when he revealed his face by pulling off his mask before zetsu and kisame..infact he was only showing himself yet again but this time he no longer had the overgrown hair he had then..the point least favoring is but why did obito look too weak then?..and my guess is that perhaps yagura might have put up a great fight prior to succumbing to subjugation thus weakening obito
Finally one doubt still prevails which is at what point did obito switch his mask from the whirlwind design to the fiery fire design shown in his fight against Minato and his meeting with Itachi as far as art is concerned..once kishi gives explanation to this I hope it clears some of the timeline issues people are having with regard to this manga thus far..once again thanks for the good work
I've always read your reviews, but never commented once; guess it's time to do it.
I agree with you with the fact that things were a bit rushed, but considering the limited number of pages, Kishimoto couldn't have done better.
Anyway I suppose that now we will see the formation of Akatsuki, and more importantly, what Obito did at Kirigakure and during the Uchiha massacre.
Last edited by Zasz; October 25, 2012 at 11:43 AM.
Great black! Maybe even better than usual! I agree with you about the events speed in this chapter,but the chapter itself was quite awesome: it explained so many things such as zetsu's origin,the statue being the 10tails,nagato's eyes,madara's troubles before awakening the rinnegan,and the most important thing,maybe out of the whole shippuden: why obito joined the dark side!
Kishimoto maybe leaving the fleshing out of Obito to Tobi's conversion to the Animators, and if last week Naruto Shippuden is any indication, the animation house responsible for fleshing out (milking the anime for all its worth) the Naruto universe, may very well give Obito four to five episodes to become Tobito.
And in truth, I thought the sealing of the Seven Swordsman was handled too quickly, especially since kakashi said we'd get to see him cut loose and show everyone why he's called Kakashi of the thousand Jutsus, which would be awesome seeing as how we didn't get to see him do so in the Manga.
But ironically, we didn't get to see him do it in the Anime other than him besting a supposedly powerful swordsman far too easily. There are still another five swordsman out there, so we'll see.