Naruto Chapter 684 – 685 Breakdown: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
It looks like we’ve had an interesting past two chapters. Although plot wise they haven’t advanced things that much, what they have given us is a bit more insight into the capabilities of a few star players in this grand battle for the world stage.
One of the most versatile characters in this battle, of course, is Naruto himself. Thanks to his alliance with the spirits of the 9 Bijuu that inhabit him, it looks like he has very few limitations with regards his abilities. We’ve seen everything from the ability to use cursed seals from Shukaku, to the ability to use multiple elements – even combination elements from the likes of Son Goku – but probably the most interesting iteration so far, was from the five-tails, Kokuo.
When we consider that the nine Bijuu were once part of the Juubi, which was considered to be the precursors of all living beings, it stands to reason that the Bijuu themselves have each adopted a multitude of various attributives with regards to life, chakra and even physical abilities, which have all been split between them. So while some have shown a particular aptitude for the likes of genjutsu, natural energy, different elements or even a penchant for sealing techniques, it seems Kokuo in particular has adopted the trait of great physical strength, which could be associated with Taijutsu. One might even go so far as to call him or her the Taijutsu specialist of the Bijuu.
With that in mind, I couldn’t help but notice how similar Naruto appeared in the panels above, to how Gai appeared when he unleashed his 8 celestial gates, even to the point where it almost looked like he was burning up. The boost to his strength was likewise significant, though it’s hard to tell how it compares to Gai’s with such a brief display. The fact that Kokuo referred to it as “unrivaled physical strength” and the fact that Naruto managed to send even Kaguya flying with one punch, however, is quite telling.
Of course, Naruto isn’t the only versatile combatant in this battle extravaganza. Kaguya herself has more than a few aces up her sleeves. In fact, it might be more accurate to surmise that her entire deck is just made up of aces.
Putting her stubborn hair and space-time jutsu aside, after noticing that Naruto managed slip into her central dimension (the one that connects the other five seemingly elemental-based dimensions together) Kaguya displayed another weapon in her already elaborate arsenal of “lots of crap that can kill you”.
A few breakdowns ago, I bought up the possibility of a connection between the Kaguya clan and Kaguya herself. Aside from the obvious fact that the Kaguya clan shares the same name as Kaguya herself, I also notice that the circular dots above Kimimaru’s eyes were also similar to the dots above Kaguya’s eyes.
Now this hypothetical connection has been all but confirmed by the fact that in the above page, we see Kaguya using the same kinds of bone techniques that Kimimaru had displayed in the past. The fact that the attack she used on Naruto was called “Suicide Ash Bones” does much to absolve any doubts anyone might have had to the contrary, including myself. With this latest revelation in mind, it seems to me as though all the strongest, most prominent clans in the Narutoverse seem to have adopted one of Kaguya’s primary traits, with the Hyuuga inheriting her Byuakugan, the Uchiha her Sharingan, the Uzumaki and Senju her life force, and the Kaguya clan her bone techniques. It might also be said that whatever clan Jiraiya was part of, somehow inherited her hair.
Still, I think what was most startling about this attack of Kaguya’s in particular, was how terrifyingly efficient it was with regards to its purpose. Living up to its name “Suicide Ash Bones”, it quite literally turned Naruto’s clone into little more than a pile of ash and dust.
I think this display of ruthlessness on Kaguya’s part was, in a way, a bit of an eye opener – not only for us readers, but for Naruto as well. It’s quite sobering to think that the only reason Naruto and Sasuke might have survived this far, was because Kaguya was not fighting to kill them in the first place, and was instead trying to keep them alive in order to extract their chakra. It also goes a long way in showing that, on a mere whim, she can quickly turn deadly if she feels threatened and it doesn’t take much at all for her to take away someone’s life once she’s provoked into doing so.
Still, despite that, it doesn’t take her long to realize that the Naruto she killed was merely a clone and that the real Naruto was still waiting for her back in the ice dimension. Luckily for Obito and Sakura, who made it to Kaguya’s central dimension intact, this gave them the time they needed to find Sasuke.
Seeing as how we’re on the topic of the different capabilities of our battle royal participants, I guess I should also throw in Obito and Sakura, just for good measure. While I was hoping that we’d see Obito using Susanoo at some point in the near future, unfortunately, we were limited to just the usual Kamui we’ve grown accustomed to so far, just on a bit of a higher level now that he has both of his eyes. Still, despite that, I guess that’s what the situation calls for, though I think Sakura is the one we really have to give credit to here.
I’m have to say, I’m glad Sakura hasn’t simply resorted to being a typical damsel in distress, and that is actually contributing in a meaningful way in this battle. Sure, she might not be able to seal Kaguya away herself, given that this is a task only Naruto and Sasuke can perform together, but she has at least shown that she is still an integral part of Team 7’s success, and while she isn’t showing us anything particularly new, she has shown that her mastery of the Yin Seal Release is quite substantial. I also like that she’s toughened up, even going so far as to shrug off being covered in acid, regarding it as unimportant in the scope of their primary objective.
No, if there’s one participant I was disappointed in with regards to these chapters, it was actually Sasuke.
Here’s the deal. A few chapters ago, during Sasuke’s and Naruto’s battle with Madara, there were a few theories flying about with regards to what Sasuke’s new eye power was. While I personally believed that he was using the Izanagi, there were others who were also suggesting some extreme form of the Shunshin no Jutsu, or even a space-time jutsu of sorts. And yet, despite all those hypothesis, the reality was so anticlimactic, I was left with a sense of astonished disbelief. The consensus we’ve been given, is that Sasuke’s jutsu allows him to swap places in an instance, from a distance, though there’s a limit to how far.
… Really…? Is that it…?
So basically, Sasuke’s almighty eye power is little more than a souped up version of the Kawarimi no Jutsu (substitution jutsu), which anyone who is Jounin level or above has been using since the start of the series. The only real difference seems to be that Sasuke can also swap other objects/people besides himself with each other as well, but even still, it’s not quite as elaborate as I was hoping for.
All-in-all, when we consider the cards all the other players have been bringing to the table, Sasuke’s hand just seems to be left wanting. Hell, even Sakura seems more impressive than him right now, and that’s saying a lot. I really hope we see a bit more depth to Sasuke’s Rinnegan soon, because I’d hate to think the most powerful doujutsu in existence has been reduced to a cheap party trick.
All ranting about Sasuke’s Jutsu aside, I do hope that the fact that he was rescued by Sakura and Obito, has opened his eyes up a bit to the fact that he can’t do everything on his own and that his companions aren’t as dispensable as he believed them to be.
In any case, that’s it from me for now. I can’t add much more to this breakdown without paraphrasing the chapters themselves, scene for scene, and I think they were clear enough on their own so as to not be too confusing.
With that said, here are the winners for last week’s Bubbliton Contest:
5th) Mark Bayan:
Bubble: Having friends is so mainstream. Welcome to myspace…
Caption: Deserted emo is deserted.
Bubble: I shouldn’t have eaten so many beans…
Caption: Fart no jutsu, making craters bigger than chibaku tensei!
Bubble: If only there was a way to get around here faster..
Caption: Like maybe an eagle, no? Okay then.
Bubble: I knew I should’ve taken that left turn at Albuquerque.
Caption: On the next episode of Lost…
Well done to Pein0Avenue for his winning entry! I was glad to see more entrants this time around as a whole though, because it allowed me to give credits for runner-up places as opposed to just posting the winner. Keep them coming please!
Here’s this weeks Bubbliton Contest:
See you all in the comments! ^ ^