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[Naruto] hmm . . .

does anyone else find this latest interview with Kishimoto to be singularly unsatisfying?

my issue with these interviews are that he's never asked useful, meaningful questions. its always something stupid like 'if an Uchiha and a Hyuuga ever had children what eyes would the child get?' <-- yes this was once an actual question. and yes it does have an answer *eyeroll*. then the interview always ends with Kishimoto having an absolute mangasm about Sasuke. but that's my point. Kishimoto is not going to tell you how Naruto ends because he likes making money (i'm of the opinion Sasuke dies because if Kishimoto can't have him then nobody can, but that's just me), so why not ask for clarification on relevant shit he's already written that need answers, won't give away what's left of the plot, and we would never know otherwise?

like, a useful question would be 'if Naruto and Hinata ever sat down to discuss her confession during the Pain Arc, what would they say to each other?' because they are never going to talk about this in series. why? because Kishimoto doesn't like girls. oh he dresses it up nice by saying 'he doesn't understand girls' hearts' but that's code for 'i don't care'. seriously, he should have saved himself some trouble and awkwardness by making Naruto in some kind of Namekian-Human Hybrid Universe -- it worked for DBZ is all i'm saying.

a good question would be, 'why did you turn Naruto into a super-hero comic when its supposed to be about militant-ninjas?'. the second Jiraiya died and Kishimoto said he did it to 'Grow the Characters up Mentally', that's when everything went downhill. now Naruto's growth in emotional/mental processes has been completely neglected in favor of making him some kind of Super Hero Godlike figure that crushes people with pure power. remember that slightly annoying kid who used to beat geniuses by setting up an elaborate 'prank' that ultimately led to him out-thinking and out-maneuvering the opponent? y'know, that guy who didn't quit and only used Kyuubi every now and then -- like when death was imminent? i miss that kid.

lately its like Kishimoto forgot what the show was about. dammit, it's called Naruto because as taken as Kishimoto is with Sasuke, he at least fundamentally understood that Sasuke is boring and the show would never have been as popular if he had been the main character. so, knowing this, why would he make Naruto more like Sasuke who has to do everything by himself, and be so damn tortured, and dominate through power alone? that makes no sense!

hell, all i'm saying at this point is that this 'War' is not Kishimoto's crowing glory of the series. there were very few storylines i actually gave a damn about. and i know i complain a lot about this series but i think its just frustration that this show could have been so much more, and it falls woefully short -- not because the potential isn't there, but because the author fails to see it.

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ladysable
Dec. 27th, 2011 08:56 am (UTC)
I wasn't going to comment on this (because no one else commented, and I'm a scaredy-cat ^^' ), but I kind of just remembered something that had to do with this post.

he at least fundamentally understood that Sasuke is boring and the show would never have been as popular if he had been the main character. so, knowing this, why would he make Naruto more like Sasuke who has to do everything by himself, and be so damn tortured, and dominate through power alone?

The thing is, is that Kishimoto was told that he needed a rival for his series to be good. He was told to create Sasuke by an editor. Meaning, Sasuke wasn't even thought of in the beginning of this story. He just happened into the story, and I guess Kishi did like him enough to move the plot forward using him. (Does Kishi ever state somewhere that Sasuke is his favorite? I hear about it a lot in fandom, but the only thing I've ever heard him say anything about Sasuke being a favorite was drawing him. Meh *shrugs* doesn't matter anyway.)

remember that slightly annoying kid who used to beat geniuses by setting up an elaborate 'prank' that ultimately led to him out-thinking and out-maneuvering the opponent?

This is why the Chuunin Exam/Invasion of Konoha Arc will always be my favorite. To me, that arc was the best that Kishi has ever done. I know some people liked the Pein/Pain Arc, and Shikamaru's defeat of Hidan, but to me, the chuunin exams encompassed everything I loved about Naruto (it's also the part where I first got into Naruto when it was showing on Cartoon Network). I love my idiot heroes, but I love them even more when they prove people wrong. Don't get me wrong, there are a few arcs that I liked in Shippuden (especially the Kazekage Rescue Arc...for reasons... =D ), but maybe it's because I recently got back into Naruto, and re-read the whole thing back in May, but there is definitely a different feel to Naruto in the first half from the second half. I know Shippuden probably made Naruto 10x more popular, giving the age boost, and thus the whole all shipping is possible (kind of) thing, and, yeah, I didn't mind Naruto being a little more mature than he was in the first part...but I think I'll always prefer the first part to the second part.

that guy who didn't quit and only used Kyuubi every now and then -- like when death was imminent?
Or used Kyuubi only when someone he wanted to protect was close to death. (Although, can't say I don't mind the whole befriending Kyuubi, er, Kurama, that's going on right now. ^_^) I miss the old Naruto, too. *Sigh*

I wonder if Kishimoto forgot in the 10 years of writing Naruto what his theme was for his manga, and that's where, while Naruto is good, it falls short of being great. (Unlike One Piece, which is always epic. Hahaha, my other fandom that I could never write for because Oda, the mangaka, is way too awesome and epic.)
Erk, it's long...again. T_T

Edited at 2011-12-27 10:37 am (UTC)
entitys
Dec. 27th, 2011 06:01 pm (UTC)
(because no one else commented, and I'm a scaredy-cat ^^' )

no need to be scared. i'm pretty easy going and i like getting other points of view. even long ones.


He was told to create Sasuke by an editor.

*nods* that makes sense. his editors manage to point out useful flaw fixes every now and then (sometimes too little too late, but *shrugs* they try). which is also why i thought he would kill Sasuke off during the Zabuza fight and replace him with Haku (because that's what i would have done) and you still get the rivalry, with Naruto forgiving Haku for killing Sasuke, and learning to work with Haku now, while taking up Sasuke's mantel to 'Deal With' Itachi, on top of becoming Hokage. it also would have given a chance for Sakura to grow and be more than a Sasuke fangirl her entire existence, and Kakashi a chance to . . . do his angst thing for failing again . . . pretty much it was the turning point that could have 'fixed' a lot.

but i'm rambling. to the point, i've never had a problem with this whole 'rivalry' thing -- in Japanese culture, especially boy-aimed comics, its a big deal -- the problem is Naruto wouldn't have been as popular if the roles were reversed. if it had been called Sasuke and about a genius who picks on his loser teammate who is slowly but surely catching up to him, then we still would have rooted for Naruto. and somewhere along the line, that's exactly what Kishi did, he reversed the hero for story arcs at a time, and it didn't work. it became less Naruto and more Sasuke. (which is why i maintain the show should have been called U; then it could have been Uchiha episodes or Uzumaki and nobody would have got annoyed.)

Does Kishi ever state somewhere that Sasuke is his favorite?

yes, kinda. there's the 'he was in-love with Sasuke's design' interview, and another where he states he mainly/only plays Sasuke in the video games. and pretty much everything in the Naruto'verse is Uchiha this and Uchiha that every chance he can get. so maybe not outright stated, but his feelings are known.

to me, the chuunin exams encompassed everything I loved about Naruto

yes! this is my favorite arc too. followed by 'the Sasuke in a Barrel Arc' because it allowed other characters to be the focus of the series. and then 'the Gaara retrieval Arc' probably for the same reasons you like it so much, and because Naruto doesn't think about Sasuke at all until after Gaara is pronounced dead. but yeah. i pretty much completely agree with that whole paragraph.

I don't mind the whole befriending Kyuubi, er, Kurama, that's going on right now

i like this too. honestly, he's acting more like Old Naruto with the Jesus Powers now than he has since Shippuuden started. when he was all 'i don't remember your name, sorry' to the Five-tails i just wanted to hug him for a minute and say, 'my boy has returned temporarily.' *sighs*

I wonder if Kishimoto forgot in the 10 years of writing Naruto what his theme was for his manga, and that's where, while Naruto is good, it falls short of being great.

this! yes. i was researching interviews and in this one Kishimoto talks about being more like Naruto as a kid, y'know a failure, so he related more with Naruto and that comes across in part one. its almost like, in the series becoming so popular, Kishimoto began to feel less like 'Naruto the Loser' and more like 'Sasuke the Genius' and as a result the series suffered. he probably did forget.
ladysable
Dec. 27th, 2011 08:50 pm (UTC)
which is also why i thought he would kill Sasuke off during the Zabuza fight and replace him with Haku

Th-that's such an interesting scenario! I would never have thought of something like that! I could see why it wouldn't be accepted though...it would really bring to front the fact that these kids are children soldiers, and that would be a really dangerous line to play with this being a shounen, and not a seinen. But...now I know that it could have been so...so...much more dangerous and savvy, and, just, everything. I mean, what author would kill off the important rival at the beginning? [I don't know why, and it's probably terrible, but I think that if Sasuke had died, Kakashi would have shaped up a lot more, er, that is, he would have been a better teacher. (I have this weird thing with Kakashi, in that I like him, but I never felt like he'd been much of a teacher to Sakura or Naruto, at least, not until Sasuke left.)]

I like friendly rivalries, something where the two characters help each other grow through their rivalry. Actually, I don't mind rivalries in general, it's just my preference that they help each other grow, instead of just one growing.

If it was called U, there definitely wouldn't be as many grievances...but I don't know, I think some people just started losing interest with Sasuke in general. Most people want a story about an underdog achieving something that's hard for him (like Naruto and shadow clones), not something about a genius who's already so much stronger. Also, there's the fact that there was too much of a difference between Sasuke and Itachi, so that Sasuke should have looked like an underdog to Itachi, but I don't think it was done well. Maybe it was their difference in age, or maybe it was the huge difference in ability. I don't know. It could also have been that Naruto is the underdog to Sasuke, who's the underdog to Itachi, or something, I don't know (and now I'm rambling).

so maybe not outright stated, but his feelings are known.

Ah, I see now. I just wasn't paying attention when I was reading it before...and I guess when I re-read it I got bored after the Kazekage Rescue Arc so I skimmed over a lot of the Uchiha this Uchiha that stuff... <.<

(I-I wonder if Kishi realized that Naruto and Gaara were...getting a little too close for comfort, and was like, 'Oh, man, I gotta get Naruto back on track, and up his need to find Sasuke because this is way too uncomfortable." [Just a little curiosity on my side, but I wonder if Kishi is, at the very least, bi. From what he says, he doesn't understand girls, and jeez, his manga is seeping with undertones of ho yay(you don't even need slash goggles), but that could also be that he doesn't understand girls, so everything's reverted to guys, except the acknowledge hetero love that's there. He's also almost 40 and not married, although, it could just be that he doesn't want to get married, or all his time is spent on Naruto that he doesn't have a social life(which is highly possible)...or there could be other reasons.])

Kishimoto began to feel less like 'Naruto the Loser' and more like 'Sasuke the Genius' and as a result the series suffered. he probably did forget.

Oh! That's an interesting take! That would make a lot of sense, and does explain a few things. I really loved Naruto from part 1, and I understand Naruto's need to be powerful because he has powerful enemies, but I still miss the prankster, simple-minded Naruto (that's hopefully making a comeback. =D ) who was strong, not because he knew powerful jutsu, but because he didn't give up, had a good imagination of what the techniques he did know could do beyond what they were used for, and always, always kept thinking ahead, just in case the last blow didn't work (looking at the fight with Neji here).
entitys
Dec. 28th, 2011 03:30 am (UTC)
these kids are children soldiers, and that would be a really dangerous line to play with this being a shounen, and not a seinen.

hmm. yes and no. a. there's a precedent in Yuu Yuu Hakusho with the main character dying within the first 12 seconds of it in epic Meet Joe Black proportions -- and it was considered shonen. and b. how Sasuke 'theoretically died' in the show was actually handled well: he died protecting Naruto, for the first time in his life considering someone else, Sakura holding Sasuke's dead body as a random beam of light and bubbles illuminated them -- i was okay with him not getting up (dislike of his character at the time aside).

but I think that if Sasuke had died, Kakashi would have shaped up a lot more

oh definitely. i thought Kakashi was too lax as a teacher -- hell its no wonder that his students all ended up being taught by someone else. and its like, i like him, but not in any teaching capacity. i get that he was supposed to be the cool 'real ninja' in the series, but it just didn't work with Kishimoto's character skimping. *deep sighs* you see why i get so frustrated with this -- too many avenues that could be improved on.

so that Sasuke should have looked like an underdog to Itachi, but I don't think it was done well

just another Storytelling = Fail casualty of Kishimoto's Plot no Jutsu. but yeah i too have rambled at length on Sasuke's identity and how Sasuke was actually pretty mediocre for being an Uchiha, and that being called a Genius completely went to his head, probably.

I-I wonder if Kishi realized that Naruto and Gaara were...getting a little too close for comfort, and was like,

here, i actually think he was looking at his character polls and wondering why Iruka was so popular as a super minor character. and then he realized he'd screwed up again in forgetting to take this little Slash subdivision of his fandom into consideration in not blatantly/covertly setting things up into the pairings he would have preferred. like notice now, you see Kishimoto 'pushing' GaaNaru, ChouShika (and he has said outright that he would never pair Shikamaru with any of the girls in the series in an interview), and just lately, GaiKaka (and this last one could have been avoided if he'd just have introduced Gai at the same time he'd introduced Kakashi.)

but that could also be that he doesn't understand girls,

i'm throwing the Bullsh*t Flag, five yard penalty. i don't understand girls, but note i will not portray them in the blatantly disrespectful way Kishimoto does. the way he treats the girls in this series is bad no matter the genre. imo, his disregard for women is a bit beyond cultural and stems from mommy issues or something, because liking someone enough to be willing to put yourself out there and ask them to either 'stay with you' or 'consider your feelings' or even just 'confess' is not male or female, it is human. i don't know his sexuality, but i think Kishimoto has issues beyond work that obviously don't allow him to date. notice his twin brother doesn't have the same attitude (er, at least doesn't show it).
tj_dragonblade
Dec. 28th, 2011 06:11 am (UTC)
Haven't encountered Kishi-interviews in my fan-experience, really, so I'm just going on this one you linked, but it doesn't seem like there's much info given.  Although it's obvious to me (as if it wasn't before) that he doesn't much like Sakura. :/  Which makes a lot of sense in the big picture.
 
i miss that kid.
 
Me too.  T_T  I think fandom in general would be a bit happier with things and more forgiving of all the other shortcomings if Naruto himself got back to being more like himself.  *re-reads sentence*  Yeah.
 
frustration that this show could have been so much more, and it falls woefully short -- not because the potential isn't there, but because the author fails to see it
 
Yes, this right here.  That sums it all up very well.  Naruto as a series is full of potential, and it's frustrating that as long is it's gone on, as huge as it is, that potential isn't being adequately tapped.  I think even the characters that fall into that 'don't hate, but don't particularly care about either' category for me would probably rate higher if they got the chance to grow and develop a little more.  Almost everyone could benefit from more focused and thoughtful character development.
entitys
Dec. 29th, 2011 06:28 am (UTC)
Haven't encountered Kishi-interviews in my fan-experience

meh. *waves hand* you're not missing anything.

he doesn't much like Sakura

yeah. he should have either scrapped her altogether, or killed her off in the beginning. as is, his dislike gets in the way.

*re-reads sentence*

*snickers* exactly. just a little bit of Old Naruto hanging around permanently would go a long way right now.
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