Naruto Shippuuden 178 Breakdown: The first mini-filler arc comes to an end, with a free (lame) motivational poster! ^ ^

Hello everyone and welcome to another weekly Naruto anime breakdown, with this week showcasing the last episode of our mini-filler, as well as a brief glimpse into the dealings of Taka and Akatsuki respectively.

I have to say that, all things considered, this was a pleasant filler that was well worth watching in the end and this last episode showcased was definitely the highlight of them all, partly due to the great production values injected into it, which were definitely a positive representative of that great achievement, and partly due to the great story at its heart.

When a filler makes you smile, then you know there is hope for the world and violent people everywhere after all.

*Hugs Kantonkage.* @__@

This, will probably get me killed…. X__X

Ah yes, children are so innocent. *Tries to sit up and realizes that my chair is glued to my bum.* T__T

Ah… you can almost see the fox glint in his eyes.

In any case, to reiterate what I mentioned before, I have to compliment the animation of this episode, because the quality was really exceptional. The animation was smooth, the line drawings were meticulously crafted and even the overall colour palate seemed to be toned down a bit, opting for a more subtle shading, softer tones and more vivid lighting that really gave the entire appearance a fresh and striking appeal.

The music, as usual, was appropriately elevated to meet that quality of the animation head on, but then, I would have never expected otherwise. The sounds were dramatic when they needed to be, with the emotional flair we have all come to know and love, while at other moments, a more casual chorus was exuberantly chanted during some of the more light-hearted and humorous scenes that really brought a smile to my face.

Aww.... He only wanted to invite them to his Neverland ranch. T__T

Speaking of humor, this episode was nicely sprinkled with moments that made me genuinely laugh and the animators did a good job of keeping it within reason, so as to not let it reach a point where it became ridiculous or where it felt forced. Those moments of humor that were there, felt natural and appropriate, which made them that much more enjoyable, yet at the same time, when things became more serious, the tone of the episode perfectly followed suit.

These subtle transitions between the more profound scenes and the more light-hearted ones were almost unnoticeable, which only enhanced the impact of each moment that much more.

Seeing Naruto trying his hardest to evade the deadly attacks of his pursuers in a fashion that only his exaggerated demeanor could make funny, was definitely worth while watching, and a hilarious scene with a poorly time Sexy Jutsu following in the wake of such silly antics, almost brought tears to my eyes.

All the other girls were jealous of Naruto's good looks. <_<

However, even despite the seemingly light-hearted nature of this episode, there was also a fair amount of action as well, although some may have considered it to be a bit on the brief side. The enemy shinobi, although typical of filler villains that we could hardly care less about, did their part in keeping the episode exciting by portraying a real threat to Naruto’s safety, without ever coming across as absurdly incompetent or cheap and they were even well drawn and just as carefully animated. The way Iruka admirably defends Naruto from harm against them, even giving the three female shinobi a considerable run for their money, was heartwarming as well.

Although the fact that Naruto was on Iruka’s back, with deadly projectiles being launched at them from behind, is somewhat questionable. <_<

Regardless, the real heart in the episode shone through from Iruka’s final acceptance of his part in Naruto’s life and his willingness to understand the boy who was so much like himself in so many ways. His determination to protect Naruto is just a symbol of that new found devotion and it was largely thanks to the Third Hokage that this union could have come about in the first place.

We are never truly alone. Sometimes, we just can't see the people who are waiting to save us from our pain. We can't see the ones who truly care for us...

All of this finally builds up to a climax that left me reeling from the effects and at the end of it all, I couldn’t help but feel happy that the relationship between Naruto and Iruka was at least somewhat absolved.

I do have to admit, though, that I was hoping for a more complete commitment on Iruka’s side regarding amount of affection and understanding he showed Naruto, or perhaps at least a few more heartfelt words from him to Naruto to make the boy feel even a little bit more accepted or wanted by someone. This was mostly because the nature in which the conflict between them was ended seemed more indirect and open to interpretation, as opposed to something solid or tangible, but then I realized that having such a perfect happy ending would have only detracted from another equally important scene further ahead in the future where Naruto first learns that he is the container of the Kyuubi.

That's it lady! I'm giving you detention!!! >_<

It was during that single moment, during Mizuki’s attempt on their lives, that Iruka was actually first able to tell Naruto how important and special he was to him and how much he actually cared. To tell him that he wasn’t a monster or a germ or a parasite and that he was a human being and a great student of his. If he said it now in the fillers, long before such a time would come to pass, then that very important moment would have been severely dampened or lost altogether, so for now, it is understandable that they still have that imperfect relationship, where Naruto is still, for the most part, an outcast and a pariah, albeit a somewhat happier one at that.

And with a new goal instilled by Iruka’s words of encouragement, Naruto truly has something to work towards now for the first time in his life, a means to make himself feel accepted and wanted by everyone in the village, to become Hokage.

To pass on the will of fire, the will to protect the one's you love, the Third Hokage shows his greatest strength as it radiates from the very depth of his heart.

And so Iruka is finally able to thank the Hokage for making him Naruto’s homeroom teacher, understanding now, fully, what the old man’s intentions were in doing so. He was finally able to find his reason for teaching again and he no longer felt the need to turn Naruto away.

Moving further along we also had a few brief moments with Sasuke and Akatsuki in this episode, but they are far from the real focus by any reasonable measure. These scenes felt more like a reminder of what is still happening, to give us a wake-up call and to bring us back into the ‘real world’ but other than that, their significance is questionable at best.

We're all asking ourselves the same question, Karin. <_<

We also get a brief look back at Konoha, where Shikaku is called to an emergency meeting by an ANBU, but I doubt we will see much progress in that regard for the time being, mostly because it looks like we have another mini filler arc coming up, in the wake of this first one. The only difference this time, is that it will focus on Kakashi as opposed to Iruka.

*Hears Kakashi fans jumping for joy.*

It would be really cool if we had one that focused on Jiraiya as well, to get a more in depth look at his three years of training with Naruto, especially seeing as how this seems to be a series of flashbacks from all Naruto’s teachers, but that is just some wishful thinking on my part.

With every moment in time that passes, we grow ever taller, inch by inch, but our true growth cannot simply be measured by any physical height we attain. Instead, it can only be measured by the strength of our will as it steels itself within our hearts.

In any case, I guess that is all for this episode. I hope you all enjoyed it and the breakdown! Here are last weeks caption contest winners:

5th) Prawlkage:

Dammit! Akamaru just pissed down the back of my neck!

4th) Chariman Kaga:

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly. (Only in pay per view.)

3rd) Pein0avenue:

Ninja academy student, the future of the Military Strength of Konoha….. No wonder it get destroyed and attacked so often. @_@

2nd) Kantonkage:

We are the three ingredients needed to make a couch potato for we are Lazy, Fat and Stupid.

Prawlkage) Chouji: Hey Shikamaru, Why do hotdogs come in packages of 10, and the buns in packages of 8? Shikamaru: God Dammit Chouji! You’re not going to eat another one of Kiba’s puppies are you? Kiba: *look of silent horror*

Well done to everyone who entered. It was a bit of a tough one, I will admit.

Here is this week’s screen.

*Insert caption here.*

There were actually so many screens that I could have used for this caption, because a lot of them had great potential, but I thought this one might have yielded the most interesting and non-cliched results.

Let’s see what you guys and gals can come up with. ^ ^

In the meantime, here is the trailer for the next episode, for those who are curious about it.

Let’s just hope it is good enough to be worth watching.

See you all next time. ^ ^

~ by Tenrai Senshi on September 20, 2010.

34 Responses to “Naruto Shippuuden 178 Breakdown: The first mini-filler arc comes to an end, with a free (lame) motivational poster! ^ ^”

  1. First!

  2. Great breakdown Tenrai.

    I liked this filler arc, mostly for it’s themes of acceptance and friendship.

    Anyway, It was great to see some humor and Naruto as a child again! 🙂

  3. Second! Yay! Ten, always a pleasure reading your breakdowns..

  4. I don’t like the number three, so I’m calling dibs on fifth!

  5. fourth *punts Tenrai* FEMALES ONLY

  6. Hehehe… nice breakdown! The Mizuki ordeal should really be the deal-breaker for Naruto-Iruka relationship and this is a good precedence.

    But it’s just mind-blowing why they’re able to put very good effort on a filler and totally screw the awesomest Pain arc. >_<

  7. Caption:
    Slow-motion=Epic Epicness
    Making an epic moment even more epic.

  8. instead of this filler they should have put more stuff on pain…it’s not that the filler sucked, it was actually good for once…it’s just that i want more PAIN!

    caption1: shit just got real!

    caption2: and that was when iruka understood that they weren’t just trying to TP him…

  9. kyaa!! i just love it when the place fairly sizzles with Ten and Kanton’s intense “love-love” atmosphere. soooooo damn cute.. XD

  10. @elatedpuppy

    I’m sure Kanton will love that. Lol!

    Now we just need to get Super here and then we’ll see the love… and I will run away…

  11. i really liked the last 10 minutes of this filler since that part wasnt filler.. was nice to se Suigetsu praise himself as he does..

    nice breakdown!!


  12. @tenrai *eye twitches and forehead vein pulses* why won’t you let go of me.*takes out a crane and haves it wrap itself around Tenrai and ElatedPuppy in hopes of escaping*
    CAPTION: Just great they had too slow it down near my face.

  13. @Tenrai – loved the emoticon demotivational poster, haha

    @elatedpuppy – lol, just what Kanton and Tenrai need.. encouragement

  14. Another excellent breakdown from our awesomenes anime breakdown writer.
    Reading the filler breakdowns instead of watching them is so much more satisfying to me. Especially when you have someone like Tenrai writing them.

    This beats watching the filler any day. X___X

  15. Caption1:

    Oh look, it’s a letter from my mother-in-law. O_o


    What do you mean, I forgot the eggs? >_<


    Quick! Someone hit rewind!!! T__T

  16. Awesomeness breakdown! 😀

    CAPTION: Oshi-! Glad it’s not butter.

    CAPTION: Whew! Glad that wasn’t penetrating!! WHAT A BOOM!!!!

  17. @Kanton: Oi, oi..leave me out of your domestic squabbles. threesomes are sooo not my thing..besides, admit it – you’re radiant and positively glowing when in Tenrai’s company.. ;p (That being said, I now depart to dig my own grave and complete my coffin. Now then Kanton, commence the massacre!)

    *On a side note, i just clicked the preview button and good gawd, there’s gonna be a rehashing of the naruto-disguised-as-sasuke almost kiss with sakura?! We’re actually expected to sit still throughout that godawful scene?! I need to stock up on benadryl. I’t been years but last time, I broke out in hives. Ugghh, suppressed memories coming back..NOOOOO!!!

  18. CAPTION:

    A coupon for Ichiraku Ramen? I’ve never seen such aggressive advertising!

  19. @Elatedpuppy Radiant glowing you said of course that what happens when you use channel eletricity. *takes out fan and lightly slaps Elated puppy into a floor * It’s a first offense and bonus points for you first comment in the manga topics.
    Caption: Hate mail INCOMING!!!

  20. CAPTION:

    A struggling bachelor’s worse nightmare: Eviction Notice no Jutsu!

  21. Caption: Iruka Thoughts: One. Position. To. Die For…
    Naruto: Iruka, don’t let the death threat put itself to use. I’m only, like, 8 you know. Some day, I’ll be able to see Tsunade wif big b00bies <43

  22. Caption: At least you won’t have use the “dog ate my homework” excuse.

  23. @elatedpuppy

    That glowing may just be the rage-induced solar radiation emanating off of Kantonkage. O_o


    Wow, you held back. Maybe this means there is hope for you after all. O__O


    Is this covered by my life insurance?

  24. Great Breakdown!!

    I get the feeling its gonna go through all the teachers Naruto had, Iruka first then Kakashi (shared with Sasuke) and then last Jiriya (I think) So there may be hope… I am so upset that there is better animation in a FILLER ARC then there was for PEIN!!! I mean WTF… anyways great breakdown. ^:_:^

    I will stop it with my mind *booom* (fail)

    At least I will die quickly… NOOO not instant slow mo…

    A watched bomb never…. *explodes*
    Kettles bombs not the same thing O_O

  25. Caption:
    “Oh no my pay slip…”
    Choices, drop Naruto or loose pay…

  26. Caption:

    “So, that is where the bathroom key is”


  27. Caption: “Tenrai there is no hope.”

  28. Caption :

    “there is still hope …. you can do it

  29. DUDE! I CAN BELIEVE I! TWO GOOD FILLERS!?…IN A ROW!? (Six tails + this one). Sadly, it looks like the anime team is putting more effort into fillers than the actual story. I will never look at the anime the same way again after episodes 166 and 167 (and the whole Pain Arc in general) T^T

    Altogether, Shippuden only has 1 horrible filler in my opinion..3 tails eww. God that was AWFUL! It was the worst filler i have EVER seen in an anime in my entire life, and that includes Bleach’s Sword Fiends mini-arc. Sora was good. It gave Asuma some much needed character development and gave us info on Chiruku (who was a throwaway character in the manga), and overall increased the sadness we felt when he and Asuma died (well I was glad Asuma died because he was unbearably weak, perhaps we should blame him for Ino’s ninja skills, or lack thereof), AND the arc gave us info on the 12 Ninja Guardians (or w/e they’re called).

    Yep, only Yukimaru, Guren and those 4 filler villains suck in all of Shippuden.

  30. @kisu yea I agree we don’t need stuff that doomed by canon aka trying to seal the Sanbi was ridiculous was gonna fail they should have expanded the Roshi vs Kisame fight now that is something I wanted to see.

  31. Great breakdown Tenrai! Funny and sensitive as always ^_^

    Caption 1: What do you mean I got fired!?

    Caption 2: Oh crap! I forgot our date tonight again. X__X

  32. Just to let everyone know, there was no anime last week, so there will be no breakdown until the new one comes out.

    (Which should be this Thursday, I think.) O_o

  33. I’m re-catching up to the Naruto anime…soonish…>_>


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