Naruto Chapter 652 – 653 Breakdown: The art of letting go.
Here’s to another double breakdown. These things are exhausting, whoosh! But, at the very least, it seems we’re finally coming to the conclusion of this battle with Obito, so maybe a bit of a change in the pace and tempo of this story will make writing breakdowns a bit more refreshing and less exhausting. Lol!
Unless, of course, the Emochiha decides to be difficult…
Oh well, let’s get on with the show!
After delivering the final blow to Obito, it seems Naruto has somehow managed to grab hold of the chakra of the Bijuu still trapped inside him, or, more specifically, inside the Juubi’s body that’s inside him.
What succeeds that is an all too familiar tug of war that we’ve witnessed before between Naruto and Kurama, only now on a larger scale as everyone unites together in the efforts of stopping Obito’s plans. We also see that while the Ichibi rejects Naruto’s attempts to pull it out, it reacts more positively to Gaara, who it still has a connection with, which only leads me to wonder whether or not Gaara might become a Jinchuuriki again.
An even more pertinent matter is whether or not Naruto is about to become the Jinchuuriki for seven Bijuu, but I suppose only time will tell what he will do with the chakras once he has wrestled them from Obito.
However, something else happens during the tug-of-war, in that Obito’s and Naruto’s chakra seems to become connected – in a similar manner to how Jincuuriki can read other people’s hearts and minds through fist bumping – and Naruto gets a glimpse of Obito’s life up to that point.
In the process, Naruto learns just about everything there is to learn about Obito, to the point where he even sympathizes with him and his circumstances, if Naruto’s tears are anything to go by.
I think it’s this form of compassion we see coming from Naruto that makes him different from those around him in many ways. Where in the world of Shinobi, perceived wrongs are usually met with righteous retaliation, ever since Naruto’s battle with Nagato, he’s chosen to adopt a more open-minded approach to dealing with his enemies and, subsequently, the cycle of hatred that moves the world ever deeper into despair.
I think part of why Naruto can do this is because he is a Jinchuuriki and while other shinobi have long regarded shows of compassion to be shows of weakness that makes one vulnerable to their enemies, Naruto has, through his own hardships, come to appreciate any show of compassion from others, such as Iruka and Jiraiya, who lifted him up even when the rest of the world seemed to be his enemy simply because he was alive.
It’s for this reason that Naruto works so hard to strengthen his bonds with those around him and why, unlike Obito, who chose to forsake the rest of the world, Naruto now has the loyalty and trust of entire nations.
It’s at this point, that Obito begins to wonder if he’s starting to regret his actions, especially in the face of what Naruto has managed to achieve with the help of those around him. I have to say that when I look up at this scene above, it reminds me of similar scenes before where we see Naruto standing along crying, with a void of emptiness behind him and how that void slowly fills with people who are becoming close to Naruto, and eventually we see him smiling. Right now, Obito is still stuck in that same void, only it has never been filled.
I’d also like to point out an observation I made on this page and that is the fact that Sasuke doesn’t appear alongside the friends standing at Naruto’s side. This might be symbolic of the fact that Sasuke himself is still lost in that very same void as well and has yet to find his way back to his comrades.
It’s also at this point that Obito and Naruto begin to converse in what can only be considered a pure battle of wills, as Naruto tries to show Obito who he really is despite his efforts to hide from that truth.
In a way, you could say that Naruto’s ability to sympathize with the circumstances of his enemies might be the one true deciding factor that ultimately allows him to “forgive” them, so to speak. Naruto himself knows how easy it is to give into revenge as he himself almost did with Nagato, so he also has a more open mind in that regard before passing judgment on others. We saw the same thing happen with Nagato after Naruto learned the true nature of his past and why he was doing what he was and so it’s no surprise that Naruto would try to do the same thing again here, with Obito. I also think it’s a case where Naruto knows that if he condemns one person following a specific set of parameters, he needs to apply those same parameters to others, including Sasuke and even himself.
In a way, it’s a similar approach to the one Itachi used when deciding how to deal with Kabuto. Rather than blindly condemning him and ending his life, Itachi chose make Kabuto see what he had become and help him understand that he is on the wrong path, just like Itachi himself was once.
In the end, I suppose the real question is whether you as a reader can agree with Naruto’s way of doing things, or if you feel that there needs to be some form of justice that condemns those like Obito for their actions. While I still believe in stories like this, the author will always implement some form of karmic justice that may lie outside the actions of the hero themselves (such as the former villain sacrificing their own lives in atonement, as was the case with Nagato), some might prefer it if Obito wasn’t just “let off the hook” and that he paid the piper with interest.
The only issue with the latter option is that you have to once again question just who is innocent and who is guilty in a world were killing is the norm and where kage or even nations have committed acts ranging from murder to genocide all in the name of the greater good, acts that have created people just like Obito.
All in all, with regards to chapter 653, I have to say this was one of Naruto’s better speech no jutsus, mostly because unlike before where Naruto never had any real answers, and where his speeches were mostly just about never giving up, this time Naruto showed a true sense of maturity in his words. He displayed an air of insight, maturity and wisdom that was well beyond his years and the way he spoke about how a Hokage is the one who needs to endure the hardships and break down the barriers for others to find their way, was truly inspiring.
Reading Obito’s expressions as Naruto spoke was almost as interesting as reading the chapter itself, because his face told a story all its own through every gesture he made. You could quite literally see his emotional defense – or rather, his mask – slowly crumbling to dust at every word Naruto spoke. In the end, when Naruto offered his hand to Obito and asked him to join his side again, you could see him wrestling with his own will about what to do.
I felt Naruto’s offer was a very strong gesture overall, mostly because I can’t imagine what it’s like to hold out a hand to an enemy who has essentially taken so much away from you, including your parents. Ultimately, I think it shows that Naruto is trying to put the good of everyone above his own personal feelings and while I don’t think he expects Obito to simply be let off without a slap on the wrist, I think he wants him to pay for his crimes in a different way, through his own form of penance.
The only question now is, what will Obito do? Will he take Naruto’s hand or will he reject it? Or, will he even get the chance to decide in the first place?
Well, that’s all from me for now. I hope you enjoyed the breakdown!
See you in the comments! ^ ^