Naruto Shippuuden 170 – 171 Breakdown: Fillers? Maybe we should start calling them “empties” instead…

Hello everyone and welcome to another weekly Naruto anime breakdown.

This week, we have a bit of an oddity in the form of an hour special filler episode, which has landed, almost absurdly, right in between what could be considered the most important moments of the currently running Pein arc. As if that alone wasn’t strange enough, the filler also takes place in part one of Naruto, before the three year time-skip, which means it has little or no relevance to the current feel or placement of the story as it stands right now.

All things aside, I guess we have to deal with it regardless. The question is, is this filler entertaining, or is it just as empty as so many other episodes of its kind that have come before?

Oh yeah!?!?! Well why don't I summon your ass on a platter next time?!?! >_<

To start things off, this special takes place just before the final rounds of the Chunin exam in Konoha, where all the remaining Gennin that have made it through the hotly contested preliminaries are training hard to prepare for the trial that awaits them.

Naruto himself is working hard on his summoning technique with Jiraiya, in an attempt to gain more control of his Kyuubi chakra as well as an additional advantage for the final round. However, after yet another unsuccessful attempt at the technique that yields little more than a tadpole for his efforts, Naruto finally passes out from chakra exhaustion. The last words he hears Jiraiya speak, are about how the older man had hoped that the Yondaime’s Legacy would have helped Naruto in the final round.

And so begins our story, as Naruto sets off in an attempt to find out what the Yondaime’s legacy truly is and how it will help him succeed. Of course, with no-one to give him the answers he is looking for, an upstart Maito Gai decides to intervene and send Naruto on a new adventure, one which quickly sucks up Sakura and Team 11 into the fray as well.

Now, this story summary may sound all good and fine to Naruto purists, who are itching for every breath of their favorite anime that they can suck into their all too inviting lungs, but that doesn’t prevent this episode from feeling somewhat cheap in the end.

Ah yes. Shameless, in-episode advertising. Can fillers sink any lower than this? <_<

I wonder if anyone in the village thinks it is odd that we have a 16-year-old Naruto jumping around in a poster on the wall, when Naruto himself is only 12 in this part of the story. <_<

As one could guess, simply by reading the title of this episode, the emphasis of the story is heavily weighed on the theme of the Fourth Hokage as a whole and the in-episode advertising for the new upcoming movie, which features our favorite blond Hokage, is not the only link made between the two featured media. In fact, this entire filler just feels like an overdeveloped form of advertising to increase hype for the new movie release, which in itself dampens the enjoyment somewhat.

I will admit, however, that the episode was not completely without its charms. I did laugh quite a few times, on more than one occasion, so it was not lacking in humor despite how shallow it may have been. However, those fleeting moments of joy were more often than not, the result of the crazy antics of Gai and Naruto, as opposed to any richness or depth to the writing or the story itself. As a whole, this double episode felt very empty and meaningless, and although the nostalgia of seeing the old team 7 was there, it did little to fill the gaps.

Hehehe... I R creepy pedophile!!!

The animation itself was what one would expect. Not particularly impressive, but not bad either. The colour panels and music did their job to make this episode come to life, so I guess one cannot really complain.

One of the biggest problems, however, is that the themes of friendship and teamwork that are so relentlessly portrayed in this arc, as Team 7 and Team 11 have to work together to pass each trial that has been set of for them, are all lessons that have been stressed to us all too many times before in the past. They carry very little weight in value in the episode as a whole and the way they are administered this time around almost feels a little immature, as if directed purely at a far younger audience than this anime would normally adhere to.

We are used to seeing meaningful messages carry across in moments of sadness or desperation, such as during Naruto’s battle with Gaara, when he puts his life on the line for those he cares about. It was those moments that carried the true heart and feeling of this anime across to its viewers and made it feel special, while right now, it simply feels like it is being spoon-fed to us and forced down our throats.

That may work for kindergartners, but older watchers of the series may not be so easily impressed by it.

SKREEE!!!! I am a pterodactyl!!! Ah dammit. Guys, I can't take off with all of you on top of me. T__T

Pterodactyls do go “skreee” right? I couldn’t think of any other sound they would make. <_<

*Coughs.*

In the end, Naruto and his team eventually succeed in passing the trials that Gai had set up for them, with teamwork, knowledge and understanding, and as a reward for their efforts, they are presented with a message.

“There are no shortcuts to what is essential to be a ninja.”

The meaning is clear and obvious, and that is that true strength cannot simply be discovered like some sort of object that can simply be collected, it has to be earned through hard work and perseverance. It doesn’t simply exist, it has to be created. Of course, some of these core philosophies are those of which Gai himself lives by.

I suppose when one thinks back on what the Yondaime’s legacy could have been, we could say that it was the Will of Fire, passed on from each generation to the next and that it is through that will that bonds all those in Konoha together, that true strength is found. However, I personally believe that Jiraiya’s words had a more specific meaning than that and I also believe that it was in Naruto that those words were truly focused.

The question is, what do you think?

Yes, that's right son. Eat your veggies and one day you can have HUGE eyebrows like me as well. ^ ^

In the end, I guess charm and humor saved this episode from failure, and instead turned it into a tolerable filler that some may very well enjoy. In either case, that’s it from me this week. I hope you enjoyed the breakdown and the episode. Now, if you will excuse me, I have to purge myself of all things filler, which may involve last nights dinner as well.

In the meantime, you can all have a look at last weeks caption contest winners.

Top Five Caption Posts:

5th) Holycow185: Some people say that more than a handful is too much. Some people are retarded.

4th) Pein0Avenue: *Please refer to the long comment in the previous breakdown that is too long to post here.* <_<

3rd) Pein0Avenue: Reason 198776298492739 to hate Sakura – Sakura: “Don’t worry my healing will reduce the swelling.”

2nd) Supertrek89: I can locate Naruto’s position by consulting this topographical map of Konoha Mountains.

Kantonkage: The true power of the Kekkai Genkai.

Well done to everyone who entered. The entries were very good last week, so it was difficult to choose the top five, but they were all very enjoyable to read.

Here is this week’s screen.

*Insert caption here.*

Other than that, it seems things will be going back to normal next week, where the last moments of the Pein arc will finally get underway.

Here is a preview for anyone interested.

See you all next time! ^ ^

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~ by Tenrai Senshi on August 2, 2010.

46 Responses to “Naruto Shippuuden 170 – 171 Breakdown: Fillers? Maybe we should start calling them “empties” instead…”

  1. FIRST! Now to read… >_>

  2. I read it! 🙂 Pretty good breakdown – I didn’t see the 171 episode yet. XD I didn’t know it came in a set or whatever! :O I guess I should check back or something. <,<;

    I thought I saw two advertisements in 170 – wasn't it inside Gai's pocket? OR WAS HE JUST HAPPY TO – (FALCON PAWNCH). NO!!!

    Anyways, it was decent I guess. I can already see Sakura bashing coming – something about in Naruto's dreams, or Sakura's worst nightmare, or Sakura doesn't deserve this, or what the fuck ever. But I'd actually be likely to do something uplifting? X3

  3. Shameless advertising ftw! Ten, you need to make ur breakdowns less epic. When your Breakdowns are this good, you make the episode fail by comparison. The Naruto anime team’ll probably put a bounty on your head >_>

  4. Zeah, but this is not the first case of advertising. Every Naruto movie was advertise in regular episodes such is this.

    Quite bad filler. This is realy the wors filler I had ever wathed in Naruto.

  5. Sorry for bad speling in last message send by me, but I must to say one more thing. In last caption contest Pein0Avenue wrote: Reason 198776298492739 to hate Sakura – Sakura: “Don’t worry my healing will reduce the swelling.”

    Nice. 😀 I laugh. Lol. Good joke. 😀

  6. I win yosha!

    Well i didn’t like this filler it was almost as bad as the Ino look-alike marriage stupidity.

  7. great breakdown ten , but you are slightly wrong in one thing about the legacy of the fourth hokage

    remember the itachi v.s kakashi fight when kakashi said “what is it that your’e after is it sasugay?” itachi replied “the legacy of the fourth hokage” kakashi then said “naruto….”

    this explains that the legacy is either naruto that is his son ? or the kyubi

    so the first two options in the poll are totally wrong

    and since i havent watched the episode ill take what you wrote

    “The last words he hears Jiraiya speak, are about how the older man had hoped that the Yondaime’s Legacy would have helped Naruto in the final round.”

    yondaime’s legacy would help naruto ? that means it cant be naruto ! and one more thing we already know the kyubi chakra helped him so yeh

    its the kyubi ! 😀

  8. sorry for the double post but for those who are wondering yeh i do remember each and every line from each and every kakashi battle >_>

  9. Shitty. That was one shitty filler. I almost quit half way through. The cartoonish and colorful attempt at humor left me in awe at how stupid the entire thing was. Now I know why they put this thing in at the end of the Pein Arc. Advertisement. Now I don’t want to see the movie just to protest their unnecessary and annoying promotion.

    *sigh*

    But besides that, great breakdown Tenrai! At least you got more enjoyment out of that thing than I did.

    @Ahsan: I believe the Minato’s legacy is Naruto. Tenrai had that up there and gave different options for varying points of view so he wasn’t “wrong”. Like I won’t say you’re wrong for saying it’s the Kyubi…>_>

  10. Caption: You know he’s about to get kicked right.

  11. Well tenrai the movie is about time-travel.

  12. @ahsan

    Actually, I believed the legacy was Naruto as well. If you read my words carefully, I said that we could say that ther legacy was the will of fire passed on from each generation to the next, because that is what the episode itself implies.

    But I then said that I believe that Jiraiya’s words had a more specific meaning and that I believed that his words were focussed in Naruto himself. However, for the sake of letting everyone else make up their own minds, I didn’t give a direct answer to my own beliefs. I just gave a poll and let it to you all.

    @Kisu

    Thank you very much. I appreciate the gesture. And thank you to everyone else who enjoyed the breakdown. ^ ^

  13. yes actually thats what i am saying . the first two options in the poll cant exist because they are wrong and its proven .filer has no real value so even if the filler says its the will of fire it cant be so .
    from what kakashi said we can very safely know its either naruto or the kyubi and then i took what you had said already to show it was the kyubi . if it isnt the kyubi still the only probable options are naruto or the kyubi …..

    why i dont think its the will of fire ? because every one has it the rookie 11 etc most people have it and more over because i know its not because kakashi’s said naruto … in the sense it can either be him or the kyubi

    anyway dont take me seriously >_> XD

  14. @Ahsan

    Actually, all of them are right in a way. A parent doesn’t only leave one thing for their child. Also remember that every action a kage takes leaves a legacy behind for those that follow, so essentially, the will of fire is one such legacy left behind not only for Naruto, but for the village as well. So how is that not an option?

    The Kyuubi is yet another, left behind for Naruto to help him in the future against Madara. Even the toad contract could be considered another such gift and Naruto himself, of course, could be considered the Yondaime’s greatest legacy left behind for the world.

    What matters is which one feels closest to you personally and which one you feel best represents your own answer. But as Super said, that doesn’t mean anyone else is wrong, it just means you have different viewpoints.

    It’s like me saying peanut butter tastes good. Just because I feel that way, does it mean it is a fact and therefor everyone must think it tastes good?

    No, it doesn’t. It is simply how you feel deep inside.

    What you are suggesting is that I take away the freedom of choice, thereby enforcing my own opinion on others simply because I believe it is right rather than letting them come up with their own answer. That would defeat the entire purpose of a poll in the first place, now wouldn’t it?

  15. Caption: Ah young love, isn’t it beautiful? Just wait till she realizes it’s not Sasuke… X__X

  16. firt of all i never said that the legacy is this thing because i say so or because i feel so . im just trying to prove a fact ^.^

    Ten its not what Minato left “for” naruto its about minato’s legacy
    what minato left behind .

    we know for a FACT that this conversation clearly took place

    kakashi said “what is it that your’e after is it sasugay?” itachi replied “the legacy of the fourth hokage” kakashi then said “naruto….”

    of course you wont take my word for it so here is the link for the episode watch it

    http://narutofights.com/original-naruto-fights/asuma-kurenai-and-kakashi-vs-itachi-and-kisame/

    fast forward to 16:00

    even if you dont take kakashi reply of “naruto” has acceptable we already know that itachi came looking for the kyubi or as a whole you can say naruto now we know thats its either naruto OR something that naruto only has . now you can say that naruto has the will of fire too but the others too have it and another thing is that if you go read this .

    http://naruto.wikia.com/wiki/Will_of_Fire

    how can minato leave behind a thing which is already being passed on from generations as his legacy ?

    this is as clear as is gets THE WILL OF FIRE HAS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING TO DO WITH MINATO’S LEGACY

    as you suggested above that the episode this episode suggests that its the will of fire [the legacy that is] i dont care what this episode suggests because its filler

    how can minato leave behind the summoning contract for the toads as his “legacy” it wasnt even he who gave it to naruto it was jiraya …

    now lets look at the two options that are the most probable

    1- naruto

    2- kyubi

    now here is where my personal belief comes into play perhaps but it has nothing to do with proving the first two options wrong

    now lets look at these two options upclose

    first of all why did itachi come to the village

    to get the kyubi right ?

    he termed it as “the legacy of the fourth hokage” but you could say that it could be naruto as well as technically he would have to take naruto to take the kyubi out so ok this doesnt prove much

    you yourself said in this breakdown that the 4th’s legacy would help naruto survive in the final round … even if its a filler they cant make such a huge mistake now can they ? …. if its something that will help naruto it has to be something the 4th “gave” to naruto it cant be naruto himself right? ok forget that even

    *SPOILER ALERT*

    *READ AHEAD ONLY IF YOU READ THE MANGA *

    *SORRY BUT TO MAKE MY POINT 100% PROVEN I HAVE TO POST THIS TOO*

    http://mangastream.com/read/naruto/71771778/3

    here is a page from the latest chapter
    kushina says why sacrifise your own son to maintain the balance of the tailed beast aka leave behind the 9 tails for the leaf village . what does this tell you about the minato’s legacy .

    i am not trying to force my opinion on anyone as i proved above [hopefully you will agree] that the first two options are not probable at ALL it can either be naruto or the kyubi [or any other option except for the first two].

    my opinion [i tried to prove it as well ] is that its teh kyubi . but when i say that the first two options are wrong its nothing but FACT [unless you can prove me wrong lol]

    sorry for the long post hopefully you will understand what im trying to say im not saying anyone is wrong or something im just pointing something out and further giving facts to prove my point sorry if i hurt you ^.^

  17. So basically you are trying to tell me that you are not trying to force your opinion on anyone, but then go on and on about how my opinion is incorrect?

    Then you go on to say how you aren’t saying anyone is wrong… But only you are right?

    Wow…

    Ahsan, to be honest, the manner in which that post was written is incredibly disrespectful. When I asked the question, I wanted each person’s opinion on what they felt the fourth’s real legacy was, that’s all. You can believe or feel what you like, but please, do not step on anyone’s toes like that again, because I believe it is incredibly immature and selfish.

    Your so called “facts” have no more weight than anyone else’s opinions on this blog, because even I can state any case I like as a counterargument and give reasons for my beliefs as well, but at the end of the day, I have no inclination to debate with someone who addresses others in such an arrogant and condescending manner.

    Please refrain from posting another message like that again, one that lacks any form of respect for others on this blog who are entitled to their own beliefs, otherwise I will remove those messages. When you debate with someone, do it in a decent and respectful manner.

  18. @tenrai, hope i’m not speaking out of place here, but you need to lighten up a little, i don’t think you should change or anything, ur awesome and ur posts and insight is amazing, but I really don’t think ahsan’s goal was to make u feel dumb… he said in my opinion several times and at the end said, prove me wrong, or something like that. Ur bound to find several personalities on a blog, and some people just talk that way…

  19. @omar101990

    Look, it wasn’t his opinion or even his beliefs that get to me. He is entitled to his own opinion just as much as anyone else. It is they way he addressed me that really gets to me.

    Please reread the post and tell me that he couldn’t have even tried to make it sound less condescending or arrogant.

    Maybe I do need to cheer up. Maybe I am just under too much pressure right now. Maybe others also need to be more understanding as well, because creating these posts is a lot of hard work and for someone else to come in and make you feel like crap, or to make you feel like you are worthless empty, makes me ask myself why I am trying so hard. I have actually had enough now.

    People need to consider how their words will be read by others. I have read his post now a second time just to see if maybe I was overreacting, but it still looks the same to me. If Ahsan feels he can do a better job on the breakdown with his one-answer polls, then fine, he is welcome to do it. If he wants to criticize my choices, that is also fine, but then he can at least do so in a respectful manner and in a way that is constructive, not destructive.

  20. Caption

    Sakura: Oh for the love of…
    Naruto: Shh…we’re frozen like this…just let me enjoy…
    Sakura: Take a picture, it’ll last longer…
    Naruto: Shh…we’re frozen like this…and I have gained a new love for Kishi’s cohorts…
    Sakura: Oh for the love of…

    I don’t have any interest in watching this episode, but nice breakdown.

  21. i miserably fail in explaining myself dont i ? anyways im sorry for the trouble

  22. Nice Breakdown as usual Ten 😉

    I just wish they didn’t cheaply break up the Pein/Naguto arc, I mean u can say any character gets a raw deal but seriously Peins awesomeness is just sad what they did :(\\

  23. @Tenrai: I can tell from Ahsan’s writing how it may be taken the wrong way but I’ve known Ahsan for a long time now (just as you have) and it doesn’t sound like he’s being disrespectful. Why would he try to be so condescending and malevolent as you interpret? Maybe because the post wasn’t directed at me I perceive it differently but all of this is disconcerting.

    @Ahsan: Maybe you did fail in explaining yourself…>_> Lol, anyway people let’s move it along. Let bygones be bygones, water under the bridge. Don’t make me post my Yatta video again. -_-

    @Pein: Why would they throw this flashback at this time? You got me.

  24. Yeah, I’m just hopen they throw a random filler into Kushina’s story. Those anime bastards have been systematically destroying the Pain Arc, they should at least destroy Kushina’s as well 🙂

  25. @kisu not really I thought they made some improvements. Other than the fact than Hinata hit Pain with the Juho Soshiken and since Kishi like to make sure whatever fight she gets in she gets curb-stomped EVERY FREAKING TIME. That really pissed me off because he should have died since he got killed by a Rasengan. DAMN YOU Older Twin KISHI.
    Caption: This is what happen when Sakura is on drugs

  26. 26th! Thats better than 36th I suppose <_<

  27. Maybe I just need a break. Things seem to be getting to me too easily lately. T__T

  28. Mmmmmmmmmmmaaaaaiiittttttooooooo GGGGGggggggaaaaaaaaaiiii!

    *thumbs up pose, tooth sparkle* DING!

  29. Oh…and…I like cheez.

  30. You sure know how to make an entrance!

  31. I think I just need to say that I am sorry for my reaction yesterday, to Ahsan and anyone else who may have been offended by it. I seem to have a tendency to misinterpret the meaning behind the words of others and take them too personally.

    I guess I am just a bit on edge right now. The reasons are personal, but I guess the gist of it is that I am not in a very good space right now and lately I have been taking it out on others in the wrong manner. I let my emotions get the better of me and it’s almost like I am always waiting for the next person to attack me, even though in reality, it’s just me who is failing to see things clearly.

    So, I guess I am taking many words the wrong way. I am sorry to anyone I may have offended. I think all this pressure is turning me into someone I am not…

    Maybe it’s time I just took a step back and thought about things a bit.

  32. What is up guys, sorry I have not been on in a while. I am writing this in an Internet cafe where kids are screaming in arabic as they blow each others heads off in counterstrike. Anyway, I took the time to watch the episodes and I believe that the fourth’s legacy can be taken two ways.
    1.) It was left ambigous in order to be left up to the audience to interpret.
    2.) It really has no meaning, they placed the words Fourth’s Legacy in the title to make us watch this crappy filler all the way through to maybe catch some kind of revelation on the fourth that was not mentioned in the manga. The concept of this “legacy” has as much thought behind it as the the thought that went into this hour of my life I will never get back watching this filler.

    The creative team behind this show has some kind of Jeckyl and Hyde syndrome. Either way I do not see the point in debating a point when the reality is that there most likely is no point. Anyway, thats my two cents. Loving your breakdowns. Looking fowrad to when I get back to the states to leave my comments on my own computer.

    -accordionninja

  33. @kantonkage: you are trying to make sence of a fight that could easily have a Tom and Jerry soundtracck. Characters in this series have no internal organs or die by normal means, they are made of tofu and die when Kishi says so.

  34. Question for anyone to answer, I want to read the Naruto Manga too, but I haven’t read a single chapter and I don’t want to reread stuff I’ve seen in the Anime, so does anyone know what Manga Chapter I should start reading on?

  35. @ifsbattle chapter 444

    @accordionNin true doesn’t mean I have to like it. Damn u Older Twin Kishi

  36. dan here ya go

    http://www.narutobase.net/manga/Naruto/444

  37. The new episode is out.

    http://www.narutoget.com/watch/732-naruto-shippuden-episode-172/

  38. the anime disappointed me again. The new episode is solid, but it looks like the flashback ends next episode. WHY!? Instead of the pointless Part1 filler they did (don’t we have like 80+ episodes of pointless Part1 filler already?), they could have done a pointless filler about how Nagato, Yahiko and Konan got a gang in the first place, how they became so prominent.

    Anyhoo, this episode was good. No crazy animation or artwork. Excellent music as usual. If you don’t like Nagato after this episode then you’re less human than me…..just saying >_>

  39. Chibi!!!
    *Why can’t they do the same with Shinra Tensei???

  40. @Tenrai, since episodes 171 and 172 are gonna be about Pain, how about throwing his theme song (“Girei”) into the Breakdowns when you do them? Plus it really captures the hopelessness and dark nature of Nagato’s childhood. Just a suggestion >_>

  41. Caption: The anime screwed up again. Sakura’s chest isn’t anywhere near that bi- err…fat, even in Shippuden!

  42. well the ep. wasn’t all that bad i just couldnt wait to see Hanzo and kishi didn’t dissapoint, now next week i hope they add to the battle that will ensue cause i vwanna see him in action along wit our good friend Danzo

  43. caption: Hey Hinata, you got the chest part wrong.

  44. i love the fact that his name isnt actually tiny… chibi sounds cuter lol

  45. @Kisuzachi

    Actually, it seems as if there is now a problem with uploading music on our posts on wordpress, which is why I didn’t have any music in this current breakdown. T___T

    It seems we now have to pay for an upgrade in order to be able to upload music files again, so I’ll have to look into that.

  46. @actually, I was watching the preview for the next episode and it looks like they have improved the animation on that one. But not enhanced like in the Pein battle, it looks quite different.

    Is it just me?

    Anyway, just for the record… CHIBI NNNNOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!

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