Monday, June 6, 2016

Obsessing Over: Naruto

Okay, so I watch anime and read manga. (If you don't know what they are, google them. I'm not explaining them here. I'm going to spend my time trying to convert you into being a fan of this series.) I've dabbled in a good portion of the long-running shonen series' (another term for you to google :)) and have had mostly bad luck.

And then there's Naruto.

I started watching this show YEARS ago. I made about thirty episodes and...wasn't really impressed. And definitely wasn't going to spend forty-five or more dollars for ten to fifteen episodes of the show. So the show got back burnered.

Then I started buying it again. Then I made it to the timeskip.

And at that point, something started happening. I started obsessing over it.

My experience with shows - pretty much all shows - is that the earlier episodes are better than the later. This goes doubly so for anime shows, as most of the long ones start losing me around episodes one hundred to one-fifty. (Though One Piece waited 'til much later to upset me.)

Anyway, I hit episode two twenty-one of Naruto, the start of Shippuden, and thought 'this show is getting better'. Then, a few story arcs later, I realized that I love the show. It's a series that keeps getting better as it goes on and, as of where I'm at right now, shows no signs of letting up.

But, what's it about?

Twelve years before the start of the series, the Nine-Tail beast attacked the Hidden Leaf Village, destroying much of the village and taking many lives. The leader of the village, the Fourth Hokage sacrificed his life to seal the Nine-Tails into a newborn, Naruto Uzumaki. Orphaned by the attack, Naruto was shunned by the villagers, who out of fear and anger, viewed him as the Nine-Tails itself. Though the Third Hokage outlawed speaking about anything related to the Nine-Tails, the children — taking their cues from their parents — inherited the same animosity towards Naruto. In his thirst to be acknowledged, Naruto vowed he would one day become the greatest Hokage the village had ever seen.

Okay, so that doesn't tell you a lot, does it?

Naruto's a story about friendship in many forms - some of them quite unhealthy - and vengeance. It's a story about doing what you think is right and about searching for acceptance. It's about loneliness and never going back on your word.

After all:
"I'm not gonna run away and I never go back on my word, that is my nindō! My ninja way!" - Naruto Uzumaki

Pictures from: Hulu
Synopsis from: NarutoWikia