Post Author: Kisuzachi
A little over a year ago I made a post about the most important failings of this current arc, and over the course of merely a year Kishimoto has topped every gripe I had. Essentially, in comparison to the current failings, last year’s list may actually be winnings, but only in comparison of course. Now, a thing like fails is somewhat subjective, but I think we can all be in agreement when I say some things are objectively bad. I’ll be posting this on my phone, so forgive the lack of colors, I ask.
1. The Villains are too powerful.
It is a common storytelling tool, especially in Shonen, that the next bad guy is typically stronger than the one before. However, it is important for one to not go overboard with this. when you’re careful, you go from a villain like Orochimaru to the Akatsuki. When not careful you end up with Madara, Obito and Kabuto. These three villains are so absurdly powerful that there is no convincing way to beat them without making them pants-on-head retarded. Then there’s the Jubi, whose menace is non-existant at this point since it continues to fail and have no real impact on anything. All tension dies the moment you remember Madara could drop a meteor on the battlefield and kill everyone there or that Tobi could just trap Naruto and Bee in his pocket dimension like he did with Fuu and Torune.
2. The Villains are bad.
Why is Madara evil? Because Tobirama rightfully said they should keep an eye on the Uchiha and because he wasn’t made Hokage. Hashirama is one o the worst characters I’ve ever ha the displeasure of knowing about. He was willing to sacrifice his life for an evil, selfish bastard in Madara that he had already defeated. He got upset at Tobirama for making the people vote for their leader instead of going along with him appointing Madara as leader. His entire character was devoted to appeasing Madara’s ego, and all this did was make Madara come off as a stupid, self-entitled brat with an incomprehensibly large mancrush on Hashirama.
What is Kabuto’s goal? He wants to follow in Naruto’s footsteps and overcome Orochimaeu like Naruto overcame the Kyubi like he said all those hundreds of chapters ago? Wrong! Okay, he wants to learn as many jutsus ad he can like Orochimaru did? No! Okay, i give up. Tell me what he wants. He wants to be Sasuke’s older brother. What. No, really, what? That is Kabuto’s nonsensical goal that in no way meshes well with him helping Tobi.
Tobi… oh Tobi. I don’t even know where to begin with this guy. When his mask came off two characters got kicked in the nuts by Kishimoto: Obito and The Masked Man (TMM). TMM was the nihilistic guy who spent most of his time onscreen getting to the point and avoiding lengthy talking. Obito was the one unambiguously good Uchiha that gave his beliefs to Kakashi, who in turn gave it to Naruto. After the mask came off, Tobi became incessantly whiny, the things he says no longer makes any sense and he contradicts himself every time he opens his mouth. “Don’t think this is about you and Rin, Kakashi.” then he says “You let Rin die, you’re trash.” and he continually thinks of her while onscreen.
3. The Uchiha
Remember how we were supposed to think the Uchiha massacre was a bad thing? In fact, we’re still supposed to think that. But why should we? This Arc revealed that every Ichiha is born with evil brain chakra… LOL. This is no joke, you read that right, evil brain chakra. What this means is every Uchiha, more than anyone else in the world, is predisposed to evil. This, in essence, means Tobirama would’ve been downright NEGLIGENT to not watch them, and a leader would be downright inept if the Uchiha were not massacred before they threw the world into chaos. No, Kishimoto, evil brain chakra does not Bsolve the Uchiha of their crimes, it just means they should’ve been dealt with faster.
4. Character Derailment
I’m gonna keep this section short, sweet and to the point.
A) Sasuke: suddenly becoming sane and joining the good guys, conpletely negating hundreds and hundreds of chapters of buildup. I swear you cannot handle someone switching sides worse than Sasuke the two times he did it.
b) Itachi: he moved from a tragic character to becoming Christ. Suddenly his parents were happy to be killed by him, lessening the paun associated with their deaths. He’s somehow good enough to be giving Naruto and Killerbee instructions in the fight with Nagato as if they were Genin. He tells Labuto he is lying to himself… but who or what makes Itachi good enough to tell Kabuto he is lying to himself. Kabuto busted his ass to get to where he was and WAS trying to find his true self through his biological knowledge, but Itachi goes “lolnope, I somehow know you better than yoh know yourself.” He’s a self-righteous asshole, but Kishi portrays his self-righteousness as noble. Disgusting.
C) Sakura: think about recent developments. Now think about what’s happened over the past 400 chapters. Let it sink in. Sakura has been storing up chakra all this time and refused to use that stored up chakra against Sasori even though he was gonna kill her and Chiyo. She didn’t use it when Naruto went 4tails against Orochimaru to help him. She didn’t use it against Hidan and Kakuzu. She didn’t use it during Pain’s invasion. She didn’t use it to beat Sasuke, even going so far as to say she’s useless and that she’ll just leave things in Naruto’s hands. She didn’t use it to heal Neji before he died. What this tells us is that she’s either a heartless monster or Kishimoto NEVER planned this and just did it to have shitty Sanin symbolism.
There are others, but if I went through them all we’d be here all night.
5) Broken Aesops.
Old generation being surprised by the new. Lol, right. Given what we saw in the Madara vs Hashirama battle, no ninja has surpassed those two. Madara easily beats all 5 Kages. When things looked their worst against the Jubi, the previous 4 generations of Kages come to save the day. The old generation kicks ass and the current one IS ass.
Unity is Stronger than all the Biju and kekkei genkai in the world. Bullshi-. Naruto and Bee are wasting time and chakra protecting the 50000 or so Ninja there. The “alliance” has literally contributed nothing to this that Naruto and Bee couldn’t by just throwing Bijudama after Bijudama at the Jubi. In fact, they’d likely have done more damage since Kurama wouldn’t have the need to be giving out his chakra like that.
Be your own person. Itachi vs Kabuto was basically one big PSA about being yourself because you’re the only you. The message exists in Naruto and Sasuke too. Before Kishi tried making Sakura ‘useful’, Naruto hadn’t used Jiraiya’s techniques and teachings for a hell of a long time because right now he’s forging his own legend. Sasuke abandoned Orochimaru and the Snake motif when he changed his team’s name to Hawk, and stopped using Snakes, instead summoning a hawk against Danzo. In a ploy to make Sakura seem like she has grown, he reverts Naruto and Sasuke’s character development to maintain Sanin Symlolism.
A happy world of lies is worse than a terrible world of truths.
Tobi: “Rin didn’t deserve to die. If this wold allows someone as good as her to die, it simply cannot be real.”
Kakashi: “I’ll kill the present you to maintain the past you.”
See the similarity?
My main problems with this arc fall into being very subjective, so I will end it here. I do hope yoi enjoyed this read, because I sure as hell enjoyed writing it more than I’ve enjoyed Naruto in the past 2 years. This post doesn’t come from a place of hate; I hate Twilight but you don’t see me devoting entire posts to it. No, thismpost is born from feelings of betrayal coming from someone that once loved this series. I hope this manga is coming to an end, but I also hope Kishimoto actually pits effort into this, or far more than he has been. This series, despite its many many many flaws deserves a strong ending. G’night Shannaro!