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Naruto 511 – Symbolic In More Ways Than One

While reading this chapter, all I could think about was how it would be adapted into the anime. In terms of drawing out some sort of emotional response from Yahiko, Nagato, and Konan’s past with Jiraiya, a single chapter in a manga doesn’t quite do it for me. In fact, I find it pretty difficult for something I’m reading to evoke any sort of response, since it just doesn’t have the same ambiance that moving pictures with music and sound provide. This is one of the reasons why I almost always prefer anime over manga or visual novels even if they’re not completely faithful, and why I was interested in seeing how various characters’ deaths ended up being animated.

I never did get around to watching Jiraiya’s, but I am curious as to whether it would have the same sort of impact that the Third’s did. I’ve always felt that the beginnings of Naruto did a lot of things really well, whether it was slowly introducing us to the ninja world or stressing the drama side of things, and one of those defining moments for me was the Third’s funeral. Even now, I still have some attachment to the “Ai to Hi” (Grief and Sorrow) track from the first soundtrack, and would love to see Naruto as a series return to those days. For a trip down memory lane, have a listen on the right.

[flv:Naruto_OST1_Ai_to_Hi.mp3 180 180]

During the 114 or so episodes of Shippuuden that I watched, I can’t even recall a single track that’s been memorable enough as this one I heard back in 2003. As such, I’m not expecting much to come from Konan’s death and the feeling that she was reunited with Yahiko, Nagato, and even Jiraiya in their small house in Amegakura. I do hold onto some glimmer of hope that I’ll be pleasantly surprised whenever the anime gets to this point, as this latest chapter did make me feel more attached to these Akatsuki characters than I ever thought I would. It may have become nothing but a distant memory by the time it rolls around — just like Jiraiya’s death that was animated not too long ago — but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a need to do the original material justice for anime-only viewers. If I can actually remember to do so, I’ll be checking out this part of the story when the anime reaches this point in the story. I loved the symbolic meaning of the nameplates showing that they had all returned “home”.

As for the other symbolic aspect to this chapter, it would be none other than Madara’s new mask. From the looks of it, it’s a combination of a Rinnegan and a Sharingan, with two eye holes now so that he can likely use one of each or some fused combination of both. Much like I was expecting back in chapter 506, the scroll with the information Kisame stole does make its way back to Madara to give some meaning to his sacrifice, so it should be interesting to see what comes from that. For now, it would appear that we’re going to finally see a showdown between Naruto and Madara, which has me excited because we still have no idea exactly what these two are capable of with their recent improvements. I haven’t counted Sasuke making an appearance at some point either, seeing as he’s been noticeably absent for the past twenty-five chapters or so.

September 26, 2010 at 3:46 pm
  • September 26, 2010 at 3:58 pmXiShi

    im guessing madara is going to be the one who capture Bee, and sasuke will be the one that fight naruto :)

  • September 26, 2010 at 3:58 pmSecsuey

    I can’t belive she is gone.. she was the only usefull female character on this manga RIP Konan

    BTW I think this was the last time we saw Madara’s time space technique I just feel like he had to lose it to make a interesing fight and tiwh the new mask and new doujutso it feel like he will fight on a diferent way

  • September 26, 2010 at 3:59 pmBossun

    Seems things are reaching the climax. It’s gonna be sad to see this series end (I had the attached song playing while writing this comment, which made the impending conclusion seem even sadder)

  • September 26, 2010 at 4:25 pmPochi

    ya I agree with ya man, even though it’s had it’s ups and downs Naruto was definitely a pretty damn good watch and read back in the beginning and it hasn’t really collapsed as much as Bleach into a DBZ sorta thing from what I’ve noticed so that’s good…

    I do wonder what will happen after Sasuke and Madara are dealt with… cause its seems both of them are going to be the major villains in the next big battle… but does that mean Naruto will fight Sasuke then Madara seeing as Madara seems more like the final boss then Sasuke… or is it gonna be some cheesy team up against Madara battle after Naruto beats some sense into Sasuke then eventually ending up with Sasuke taking responsibility for everything and sacrificing himself to finish off Madara….

    on top of all this we still have the Orochimaru obsessed snake guy running around (forgot his name)….. soo…. ya lots of stuff to go through before this story ends I think…

    the same could be said with Bleach and sure as hell can be said with the awesome beautiful amazing One Piece…

    so there’s definitely lots more to do with all 3 of the Big 3… but… I do wonder what will happen when one of the Big 3 ends… since D.Grayman really hasn’t kicked up as much as I thought it might and instead became D.Yaoimen in a sense… and then of course we have Fairy Tail but it doesn’t seem like it will be a Big 3 replacement… so ya…

    • September 26, 2010 at 4:52 pmSecsuey

      yea always shontastics mangas about fight

    • September 26, 2010 at 7:43 pmKiiragi

      Honestly, the “Big 3″ is just a phase. Once any of them end, the people who latch onto them will move onto the next one. There’s a lot of manga that have stories just as good as them, but are constantly overshadowed by the ridiculous amount of popularity the main three have. When there’s nothing to look for, they’ll start looking elsewhere, giving the lesser known manga better attention.
      Nontheless, Kishimoto has a one shot coming out soon, as said from the chapter, so he might have another manga lined up right after Naruto anyways. Kubo.. well, needs to probably get mentored by Urasawa Naoki or something.

  • September 26, 2010 at 4:37 pmkeiOnDaisuki

    man, i can’t believe konan died T_T but oh well,i’m a little happy though since she’s gonna be reunited w/ nagato..XD i could’ve preferred for that USELESS SAKURA to DIE anyway..MAH KONAN~ T_T

  • September 26, 2010 at 4:45 pminnerchihiro

    I feel the same way about anime vs. manga/books. I love the way moving pictures bring together so many arts and evoke so much emotion. There have only been a few times where I’ve felt that a manga was better than an anime for reasons other than “it wasn’t like the original.”
    As for Naruto, that song is really a trip down memory lane. For me it was Haku’s death in the very first season. I cried like a baby >_____<

  • September 26, 2010 at 4:51 pminfinite

    Divine you need to go back and watch the episodes where Asuma and Jiraiya die. There is nothing good about dying but both of there deaths were animated good. Watching there deaths in the anime was better then reading them in the manga IMO. Plus the BGM is some of the best in anime.

  • September 26, 2010 at 5:06 pmLucian

    The anime really made the Jiraiya vs Pain fight well, as well as had his death go well too. I would definitely recommend you go back and watch that. But I don’t blame you for dropping Naruto Shippuden, it does quite suck most of the time.

  • September 26, 2010 at 5:09 pmShirt

    Even I, someone who stopped watching a long time ago, know of this theme and the sadness that was there when the scenes played out with it. It’s actually pretty depressing just to listen to it again. It’s funny though, I think this was the point in the story that I stopped watching..


  • September 26, 2010 at 5:28 pmYoon

    so glad Konan is finally dead

    • September 26, 2010 at 5:43 pmHavoc

      Why? Did she step on your puppy? I think she is definitely one of the underrated characters. Most of Akatsuki is actually. What is the point of killing awesome, badass, occasionally relateable villains in 2 chapters?

  • September 26, 2010 at 5:40 pmEspyLacopa

    Eh, I find that anime only trumps manga when the studio making the anime actually puts in the effort to make it good. Some cases. . .they fall far short.

    • September 26, 2010 at 9:25 pmBlaineo

      I second that. Anime could easily trump manga when it has been made with care. Unfortunately they mostly produce sloppy, rushed animation, especially for series like this. If only they weren’t so greedy and took a break in between seasons. :(
      I find, especially in Naruto, that a lot of the scenes with potential were skimmed over with no care or attention.

  • September 26, 2010 at 5:57 pmCode Breaker

    Well Konan was and will probably be the most kick-ass ninja girl in this whole series =/

  • September 26, 2010 at 6:00 pmyanipheonu

    Anyone else think Hakumen from Blazblue after seeing Madara’s new getup? XD

  • September 26, 2010 at 6:20 pmvirox

    I liked the indication of Konan and Yahiko having some sort of love relationship. An unexpectedly sad chapter. Always loved the soundtrack of the old Naruto series..

  • September 26, 2010 at 6:21 pmAshen

    *mostly skimming because of spoilers*

    I hafta agree with you regarding the soundtrack for the eventual animated ver. The song you have here is probably one of the most memorable in Naruto’s anime for me as well, along with the “slow theme” after Naruto’s big clash with Gaara pre-Shippuden, as well as one of the OPs.

  • September 26, 2010 at 6:22 pmTakaii

    “Since it just doesn’t have the same ambiance that moving pictures with music and sound provide. This is one of the reasons why I almost always prefer anime over manga or visual novels even if they’re not completely faithful”

    This is exactly how I feel. Which is why even though I haven’t watched Naruto is ages, I’m dying to see his parent’s past animated.

  • September 26, 2010 at 6:33 pmkoukiryu

    Even though I haven’t watched Naruto faithfully since the Third Hokage’s death, I’m definitely looking forward to seeing this animated.
    For most of the Akatsuki – mainly Yahiko, Konan and Nagato – I was pretty surprised by how their stories effected me and this chapter really surprised me with how sad it was to read.

    Looking ahead, I’m just wondering where Sasuke will eventually fit into the eventual confrontation between Madara and Naruto.
    With even more connections brought out into the open between the two clans, I wonder how things will play out now.

  • September 26, 2010 at 7:40 pmLectro Volpi


    It’s been a long time since I hated a character… I’ll be waiting for the day Madara snaps with the classic “DAMN YOU!!! DAMN YOU ALL!!! I AM GOD!! I AM THE PERFECT SHINOBI!!!!”

    At least Konan got a full chapter for herself. Frog suits FTW.

    Great instrumental, but the one that played at the Third’s funeral is the best for me.

  • September 26, 2010 at 8:12 pmEternal

    I don’t read or watch Naruto anymore but that bgm track is quite beautiful, wonder why I didn’t notice it in the past.

  • September 26, 2010 at 8:49 pmbubbles

    Even though there were some rough patches with naruto after the time skip, i still find this series a good read. ie: revelation of itachi, jaraiyas death, etc
    Itll be sad when this series ends

  • September 26, 2010 at 9:29 pmplatue

    does anyone else love the fact that Naruto is now the bridge to peace in the ninja world, with Nagato, Yahiko, and Konan becoming the pillers to hold up the bridge.
    And the fact that in the first major story arc in Naruto, the Land of Waves Arc, Naruto defended the new bridge that was to reconnect land of waves to the land of fire. The land that the Uzumaki clan came from, that was destroyed by the second great ninja war, and the bridge was then named after Naruto.
    I had ccompletely forgotten about bridge Naruto but remembered it when reading last chapter.
    It kinda suprised me that this similarly was written into the story.
    And it kinda made me a little giddy when I made the connection.

  • September 26, 2010 at 10:12 pmShinjiro

    RIP Konan! I’ve taken a liking to this character and I am sure she could have been even more developped. In one way, it might be for the best, I’d be truly raging over if I really got attached to her. I do hope her after life would be filled with peace and joy along with her two best friends and even Jiraiya-Sama.
    I think manga will always be a great and main pillar for any long running good anime. The music does bring a true emotional impact on any listeners. I do agree there could have been a lot more emphasis on certain scene. If you remember, a lot of people raged and got ticked with Hinata’s death in the manga. That scene, imo, had been downplayed in its emotional weight in the anime.
    You got to give it to Kishimoto-sensei, he is certainly not afraid to kill characters (as opposed to Kubo).

    • September 27, 2010 at 1:31 amcurious one

      Konan’s death is almost an exact parallel of Harribel in Bleach (though Konan does have more relation to the plot). Killing off all the Akatsuki is just like killing off all the Espada. I certainly agree that Kubo doesn’t kill off important characters, but it’s hard to say that the guy who had most of the village resurrected is more willing to kill characters just because Konan died. Kakashi and Shizune were dead, and we thought Hinata was for a week, but they all lived or were brought back.

  • September 27, 2010 at 1:14 amsto

    konan was quite epic, too bad she was only good in the last moments before she died =( makes me sad to see such development and then have it wiped out.

  • September 27, 2010 at 2:55 amvalgaav

    there’s a little theory that I came up with. I might be overthinking it, but it just may be true to some degree.

    Remember the story about planks? With them being white and red? The thing that caught my attention is about the white part.

    You can read it here -> http://mangastream.com/read/naruto/63074102/8

    Now, if you think back, and remind yourself the last page of previous chapter, you will remember that Nagato’s hairs turned…. white ! I think it might be somewhat revelant, and that Madara could get fake nagato. After all, he was able to make all those 6 paths with same exact eyes as he had, so it wouldn’t be problem to make another one, or at least have one looking exactly like him. I’m pretty certain that there is some hidden meaning behind this flashback. What’cha think about this?

    • September 27, 2010 at 6:14 amAbyss

      I believe that this teory relates to the death of themselves, but one thing caught my attention, the smile of Nagato when Madara grabbed his eyes.

    • September 27, 2010 at 11:08 aminfinite

      I like your theory. You might be on to something.

  • September 27, 2010 at 6:07 amAbyss

    If Madara was untouchable with the sharingan, now, with the Sharingan and the Rinnengan combined? a new god among humans, I’ve been thinking that Naruto will obtain the Rinnengan, you know, the Nagato/Sage of the Six Paths heir and everything. Kishi just broke the balance power in Naruto, Naruto even with the nine tails power can’t touch him, and one question, the sharingan can control the kyubi… that means that a sharingan user has some tipe of effect over that power? (kyubi’s chakra).

    Hey folks! I see Naruto with one step in the other world

  • September 27, 2010 at 8:02 amplatue

    I’m still trying to fully understand the idea of the 6th paths.
    The Rikudō Sennin was said to have all 6ths paths and that made him a god among men.
    Madara said that he now has 3 of the 6th paths, the Sharingan from the Uchiha clan, the streingth of the Senju clan, and Nagato’s Rinnegan.
    he also said that having the tailed beasts would give him the 4th path.
    Pain had 6 paths of pain, but these have nothing to do with the 6 paths of the Rikudō Sennin.
    So where Madara is at right now he is just as strong as Pain was before he died, because Pain had 3 of the 6th paths.
    So to have the first 2 paths you need to be born with them, or somehow take them from someone who was… then if your born with the first 2 paths you just get the 3rd path… the get the 4th path you need to collect all the railed beasts recombine them into the 10 tails and seal it into your-self…

    • September 27, 2010 at 9:57 amSOSAnimeBoy

      O..M..G… my brain just melted.

    • September 27, 2010 at 2:11 pmHalfDemonInuyasha

      I’d hazard to try to guess on ANYTHING in-depth being done right now with everything being thrown at us, especially since a lot of older questions have yet to be answered as well.

      Also, in case one forgot, the Juubi’s eye that we see is basically a Rinnegan/Sharingan combination too; 3 tomoe on each of the 3 ripple patterns. The Rikudo’s “symbol” with the yin/yang symbol in the middle is also reminiscent of the Juubi’s eye.

      And seeing all this stuff now…I do have an inkling that Naruto will end up becoming a complete Sennin himself by the end. An Uzumaki himself, directly connected with Hashirama Senju with the Uzumaki’s “special” chakra most likely, coupled with part of “Itachi’s power” that was given to him (and he gave his ocular power to Sasuke before he died). Hell, just look at Naruto with his Kyuubi-chakra transformation. He even has the 6 tomoe “necklace” like the Rikudo Sennin had.

      But yeah, everyone is becoming haxed; at least Naruto and Madara, which makes me dread when they bring Sasuke back into the picture x_x;

      • September 27, 2010 at 4:57 pmplatue

        I always thought that the Juubi’s eye that we saw only looked like that because the Rikudō Sennin was controlling it at that moment.

  • September 27, 2010 at 12:54 pmAbyss

    Thinking of it, Madara said that he given the rinnengan to Nagato … if Nagato was an uzumaki, an heir to Senju, receiving a sharingan … evolves into a Rinnengan? Senju body + Uchiha eyes = Rinnengan?

    • September 27, 2010 at 5:03 pmplatue

      But, Nagato was born with the Rinnegan. He was maby 10 when he first used the Rinnegan.
      Maby Madara experimented on Nagato’s pregnant mother, then wiped the memory from her… if that can be done, or Madara is Nagato’s real father, all starwars like.
      There’s no was he could have just given him sharingan eyes.

    • September 27, 2010 at 9:40 pmDivine

      I threw out this idea last chapter. I’d say it’s possible for a Sharingan to evolve into a Rinnegan in a Senju’s body. It is supposed to be a derivative of it after all.

  • September 27, 2010 at 3:05 pmYanDaMan

    Those frog suits in this chapter amused me to no end.

  • September 27, 2010 at 6:29 pmtman

    Are you planning to make a post about the One-shot next week, Bench?

    It’s by Kishimoto, and there’s no naruto next week.

    • September 27, 2010 at 9:41 pmDivine

      Possibly. I’ll keep an eye out for it.

      • September 28, 2010 at 9:08 pmtman

        the same guys who make the translated scans of Naruto will release Bench as well

  • September 29, 2010 at 8:18 amName (required)

    @valgaav: I don’t think the hair thing is really that important. I took it as an indicator that Nagato, Konan and Yahiko finally parted to the other world. See, as I see it, Nagato’s hair was red because Konan was still alive, and away from him and Yahiko. When Konan finally died, they could finally rest together (I think at this point it’s safe to assume there is something like a netherworld in the universe Naruto takes place in).

    So, Nagato was “red” because he was tied to this world, he was “still here”. Konan dies, he “leaves” the world, his hair turns white. They go to the other world and wait until some important character is about to die, then they reappear and save his (or her) sorry ass. Naruto at its best.

  • September 29, 2010 at 10:03 aminchvbeam

    hey! thnx for publishing the song! nice :)

    reminds me of the greatness of Naruto when it’s was at its prime the last time..

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