Why Naruto Is The Perfect Hero
Naruto's Mysterious Power and Why He Is The Anti-Thesis of an Emotionless Shinobi
There's rampant crappy analysis on this site from people who cry "weak storytelling". Many don't seem to understand the story, or Naruto (and Sasuke) as characters.
To begin with, Part 2 is not supposed to be the same as Part 1. It never was. Part 1 was child-Naruto training to be a ninja in school. Part 2 is young-adult-Naruto learning what it means to be a man in an ugly world. Those of you who have made false assumptions about where the story was going after VoTE should be disappointed only in your assumptions.
I wrote this thread after seeing compLaints in the chapter 412 discussion about how Sasuke and Naruto's rivalry has vanished (followed by "this story sucks"). I don't get why you don't get it. Sasuke and Naruto had a rivalry AND a friendship in Part 1. Sasuke abandoned both at the end of Part 1 when he said very clearly and succintly that the past he shared with Team 7 was over and that he would cut those bonds.
Naruto holds on to friendship, but the theme of "rivalry" is really more about conflict. The question is important: Is it possible to have a healthy relationship with someone you are competing against? In Part 1 the competition was simple and that answer was an obvious "yes." In Part 2 the competition is not mere competition but actual conflict. Sasuke's goals and Naruto's goals are not aligned. If Sasuke attacks Konoha, they will be contradictory.
The "rivalry" between Naruto and Sasuke now is a difference in philosophy.
Sasuke made a choice to pursue power through hate and power-ups ("hax" if you will through absorptions, curse seal, blood bargain sharingan-upgrades etc).
Naruto is pursuing strength through relationships and hard work (denying the 9 tails and slowly and steadily gaining his own power). Naruto's philosophy is that love is stronger than hate and that bonds give more strength than loneliness and despair, and that friendship is worth fighting for.
People make fun of Naruto and wonder why he doesn't give up on Sasuke. Aside from the quest being central to his character, his philosophy, his promise of a lifetime, and his "way of the ninja", Naruto MUST believe that Sasuke is worth it as a human being, that there is a "good" Sasuke beneath the facade we see now that is worth fighting for, even if Sasuke himself has forgotten it. I wish I had friends that cared that much, because I think most people abandon their friends when they go through trials much less severe than what Sasuke is going through.
At any rate, it can't be denied that Naruto's growth IS slow (but steady) while Sasuke's is blazing. But that fits with everything that the manga has stood for to date. Gifted people progress faster and more easily. Gifted people make life seem unfair, but it's also true (yes in real life as well) that anybody can compete (and win against) a genius. Is it ALSO true that the genius and the competitor can be friends? This is a theme.
It is important to understand that not all battles are won by power alone (or stats). Weapons and abilities lose their effectiveness in ineffective hands. Character has a lot to do with it. So do conditions. So do motives. When stacking Naruto and Sasuke side by side, which do you think is the stronger person? I don't mean which can throw the biggest punch. That isn't real strength.
A lot of people are hating on Sasuke right now. And then they say that Kishimoto is developing him badly. I disagree. You're supposed to see Sasuke as, at the very least, cold and unbalanced. He is has made himself cold to avoid feeling pain, which has stunted his growth and made him childish as well. He has verbally SAID he is stuck in the past with all he has lost; and he is relying on his gifts and vengeance to make him powerful. Not that Sasuke doesn't also work hard, but his inner foundation is weak and crumbling.
Meanwhile, Naruto is full of vigor and fight, gaining allies by the dozens, and gradually maturing into someone who is starting to see the bigger picture--not just his friendship with Sasuke, but the meaning of friendship in general, and the problems the entire Shinobi world faces for being considered "tools".
And Naruto has something that no one else has. And it is because of this thing that he will be able to become Hokage greater than all previous Hokage.
Naruto's special gift is NOT the 9 tails.
It's not "that jutsu" or Sage training, or being the son of the 4th Hokage.
Naruto's greatest distinction (with great irony, and not intentional by the 4th, I don't think) is that he was ostracized as a child.
No. Really. I'm serious.
BECAUSE Naruto was ostracized as a child, he has actual reason to care about friendship (unlike many shallow shounen heroes). And also because he was ostracized, he missed all the indoctrinization of "what it means" to be a Shinobi. No one educated Naruto about the Shinobi world until he joined team 7, and by that time he had gone ahead and formed his own ideas. We know he didn't study, so his ideas about "the way of the ninja" were things he made up, and so he made rules that coincided with his heart.
This makes him unique. Naruto's other gifts aren't his jutsus. Not that those aren't important, but they aren't his trump cards.
Naruto's personality is his winning combo. He is tenacious, proactive, hard working, self-affirming, and extremely likable. There are what are commonly called "leadership" qualities (they pull you aside in high school if they think you have them--really). Naruto just hasn't grown into them entirely. He hasn't defined his goals yet (i.e. what does it mean to him to be Hokage?) but in the "real world" these are the qualities of successful people--many who were also misfit failures at one point in their lives!
There's one thing that all successful people share in common: When people laugh at them for their dreams, they don't care; they believe in themselves and just kept on trucking, and this is exactly what Naruto does. The more READERS laugh and give up on him even, the more true to life, and the better the story in the end.
Furthermore, Naruto really cares about other people, about kindness and happiness and relationships (all things traditionally counter to Shinobi), AND although he doesn't study, he does listen to advice, all of which are excellent leadership qualities. If THAT weren't enough, Naruto is steadfast, sticks by his principles, but is NOT resistant to change. In fact, Naruto is a catalyst for change: he busts through the barriers with the subtlety of an elephant. And if THAT weren't enough, he also has what it takes to become really powerful... just more slowly. But when he gets there, it will be with real strength, as Haku predicted long long ago.
And Sasuke will not be the only one who will be amazed and inspired by this. Naruto's personality is SO contagious, in fact, that he has the potential to change not only Konoha, but the entire Shinobi world.
No offense or anything, since you developped your theory well and all, but you certainly like to state the obvious in a really dragged out way.
a.k.a Action Bastard
Are Kishi himself cause you spit out all this useful stuff in every theory you make or maybe you help write the manga with him but seriously another get theory cant wait till the next one and dont let people hate on your theories they just wish they could make theories as good as you Theory Master
You made a long post but like the guy said this is a given and you are stating the themes from Naruto. Althought they are well explained and some people might not fully understand them so it might shed some light on their narutoverse knowledge.
Thanks for the positive comments. I DO think that Naruto's character was purposefully made to be the anti-thesis of the "typical ninja." And yet there is something so human and compelling about him that the others are starting to absorb... and it's making Konoha better. If Naruto can gain the strength to prove that he can do what ninja must do and still retain his humanity, then he will win them all over.
Every jutsu Naruto has used thus far we have "seen" him training that jutsu. Not so for Sasuke. He's been downloaded a lot of information and jutsus and "seems" to be the stronger character. I'm not so sold on his fight with Itachi, and Orochimaru. Neither were flat out wins and you could argue me to the teeth about this but I won't buck my position. So don't. Sasuke fanboy. Sasuke is not in the class of Pein or Madara. The last two chapters standing are showing evidence of this. He is weak, emotional, and a failure. Why do you think he left Konoha? He was so confident that his jutsu (on his rooftop fight with Naruto) was so superior that he couldn't fathom Naruto having a stronger jutsu than he. So he cried and left.
I have to agree there ^ He is far more distinctive then any other ninja. Kishimoto did this for a reason and i would even say he was foreshadowing from the start that Naruto was going to have a major impact on the ninja world by changing it. That is where the whole "chosen one/King" dilemma fits in. O i just noticed are you refering to me as the Sasuke fan boy lol?
As much as fans and readers rag on Naruto, his motivations are always clear. His compass always points north, and his sense of direction, purpose, and his place in the world are unquestioned. He is at peace with himself because he has refused to become something less than what he is. And by being himself, he affects those around him in a positive way.
Imagine for a second if Itachi had found a better way to resolve the clan dilemma? Imagine if things hadn't turned out the way they did? How much better would not only Konoha, but the world be if Itachi had had a Naruto-like nindo and followed it to the end?
That's the difference one person's actions can make. This truth extends outside of the manga and into real life.
He would become and old blind senile old fart >_<
Originally Posted by SHODAIME!
Also what makes him even more impressive is that he has remained consistent throughout the entire manga, from when he ranted on at Zabuza for treating Haku like a tool to now as he trains in the same art as Jiraiya, remembering him not as a shinobi but a close personal figure. Naruto sees no one as a tool and this is what seperates him from everyone else. He has no desire for manipulation in the way other people do. The only way he manipulates people in any form is through the positive effect he has on everyone around him because of his attitude, and he doesn't even do that on purpose.
In effect the Land of Waves/Zabuza and Haku arc sums up the entire manga's theme and direction perfectly.