Saturday, December 19, 2015
Naruto (manga, vol. 55) by Masashi Kishimoto, translated by Mari Morimoto
I have less that 20 volumes to go before I'm done with this series. I've been reading it for so long that it feels like I need to make it to the finish line, but this volume made me wonder if I'm going to be able to manage it.
Part of the problem is that it's been so long since I read the volumes prior to this one. The result was confusion – so many characters I either didn't know or could barely remember. Personally, I think Kishimoto is better at depicting one-on-one battles than large-scale wars. I miss the days of reading extended battles that were really just an excuse to reveal characters' thoughts and emotions and to maybe throw in a flashback or two. It should have been a more emotional experience, seeing characters I knew and loved, like Haku and Zabuza, reanimated and forced against their will to fight. Instead, I had to struggle to feel anything. There was just too much going on.
I continued to dislike Killer Bee's efforts to rap all his lines. I can't wait until Naruto is finally done training with him, because I would like him to go away. Why does such an annoying character have to be so important?
I'll wrap this up with a quickie comment about the jutsu Kabuto used to reanimate people. We're told that it can't be broken, even with the caster's death, and yet Sasori (a master puppet user who was killed a while back) and Sai's brother crumbled to dust after, what, dealing with their unresolved issues? For Sasori the key was his mother and father puppets, and for Sai's brother the key was seeing Sai's drawing of the two of them together. How could Kabuto not know about that little problem with his supposedly unbeatable jutsu?