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Just enduring these moments would qualify as an S rank mission.
The general treatment of Naruto prior to the series. It's at least somewhat understandable that the villagers would be suspicious and angry at the boy who is hosting the same demon that caused them so much pain. What isn't understandable is that the leaders allowed these events to unfold. It has been made clear more than once that the higher-up ninjas (including Kakashi) were fully aware of how much his life sucked. They never once considered the possibility that this kind of treatment might cause the boy possessed by the powerful, malevolent demon to go on a killing spree? Or that instead of seeking attention he would decide to betray the village the first chance he gets?
This is a problem with just about all the villages, save Kumo. The villages apparently believe they can abuse the jinchuuriki into subservience, and if the child turns out like Gaara, they kill them and try again.
Sasuke and the Zabuza clones, initially he got his ass kicked by one but the second time he curbstomps several with ease. Somehow, Sasuke gained a ridiculous speed boost offscreen. It also had nothing to do with chakra as Sasuke had to think about using the principles of the tree climbing in order to avoid Haku needle barrage.
Lee's battle with the three sound ninjas. First is the fact that even though Lee is facing three opponents, he uses a move that he knows will only take out one opponent (which it doesn't) and then leave him completely helpless. Even worse is when it's later revealed that he can simply take off his ankle weights and move at superhuman speed. More than fast enough to take out all three sound ninjas. Why didn't he just take the weights off and beat them?!
Made worse by the fact that they ended up being pretty much extras. Especially after he was shown curbstomping Sasuke and later taking Gaara to his limit.
Apparently, Sakura's combat prowess only works around Naruto, one of the earliest examples is her fight vs Zaku who stabs and bites him. However, sometime later, Naruto mocks Lee, and she sends him flying. Where was that power when she needed it?
While the Gaara vs. Lee fight was awesome, one moment stands out that makes you want to hit your head against a wall. Gaara managed to get away from Lee's Initial Lotus by creating a perfect sand replica of himself, pulling a Replacement Jutsu with it, and burying himself in the ground while rather high in the air getting bounced around like a pinball, and all of this was done in the time that it took the person hitting him to blink. While Gaara was likely to win given his importance to the plot, his manner of doing so was utterly nonsensical.
Though this is part of the problem in that most Jutsu are never fully explained, Replacement being one of the first examples. All we really know about it is that it's very common and lets the user swap themselves with a prop of some kind, but in practice it seems to allow near instantaneous teleportation and make the prop look like the user. The obvious question being if they can use Replacement to do these sort of things like the Lee example, why can't they do it all the time just to get the benefits of super speed? Using Replacement, Gaara is able to escape Lee in the blink of an eye, but at no point anywhere else does he display that kind of speed. Infact, if you combine the factors of insomnia, carrying the gourd, carrying the sand armor, being able to fight without moving from his spot, and being able to block almost anything that's going to attack him (and thus never requiring fast reflexes), he should be one of the slowest main characters in the whole series and just because they said "Replacement Jutsu" they handwave him being to out maneuver one of the fastest, while in the air, while setting up follow up traps.
Not mention how Gaara being kicked 20 feet in the air doesn't hurt him whatsoever because he has a inch or less thick layer of sand covering him.
Team 7's first encounter with Sasuke in Part II. The story portrays their failure to bring him back to Konoha as Sasuke simply being too powerful for them. Sasuke's new power did indeed play a hand in their failure, but it was also because they fought like idiots. May I remind you that the reason Naruto and Sakura vowed to get stronger over the Time Skip was to bring Sasuke back by force (even if it's questionable what good this will do to someone who left the village on his own will). So Naruto decides to show just what he trained for... by standing absolutely still like a moron while Sasuke slowly pulls out his sword and swings it at his neck, requiring Sai to step in and stop an attack that Naruto had all the time in the world to avoid. Then Naruto just swings on his arm, getting shocked when Sasuke uses his new Chidori Nagashi. Sakura, who'd spent the entire fight just staring at the LOL'some Curb-Stomp Battle, finally decides to charge in... in full view of Sasuke, ultimately requiring Yamato to get stabbed and paralyzed to stop Sasuke from harming her. The battle ends with Sasuke hardly having worked up a sweat, having made total fools of Team 7 for not attacking him seriously after all the training they went through for this exact purpose.
Following Sasuke's fight with Deidara, Deidara used a gigantic self-destruction technique. Sasuke survived the resulting city-sized explosion by summoning and mind-controlling a massive snake to shield him, when he was explicitly described as being nearly out of chakra just a few panels before. Any one of those techniques would have required a vast amount of chakra, never mind both. Sasuke managed to do all of this in the time it took for the explosion to reach him. After it had already started, just a few feet away from him.
Not just any Summon either, Manda the most powerful Snake Summon who even Orochimaru feared would turn on him. But hey, so long as your an Uchiha you can do anything.
The section of the manga where Pain spends a few chapters detailing his backstory. Pain likes to paint himself as a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds, claiming he has felt pain like no other. While the basics of his back story had been mentioned, the exact reasons he suffered more than anyone else had not been revealed until then. Fans were expecting a sad tale that made Gaara's life look easy by comparison... and got a bunch of chapters showing a list of cliched Freudian Excuses. It's supposed to make Pain's villain status understandable, but it makes him look like an overgrown Emo Teen. Even worse when you consider that Kishimoto had done a much better job of humanizing his villains in the past. (Gaara, Gaara, Gaara.)
It was just a case of With Great Power Comes Great Insanity, especially when that power involves summoning a death god by sprouting hundreds of spikes painfully out of your back, after having your legs crippled, your best friend shoving your kunai into his chest, and your idealistic outlook thrown in your face.
It's a no-win situation. We would've wanted to know his backstory, given that he claimed that he had suffered more pain than anyone else. But, assuming it wasn't otherwise important, leaving his past as a Noodle Incident would've been safer — then we could still have imagined that what he claimed was true.
Just because Pain is of the opinion that his pain is more deep and important than other people's pain and that gives him the right to cause untold death and destruction doesn't mean it's supposed to be true.
The reveal of Big Bad Madara Uchiha as the real villain because of its timing. This marked when the Uchiha clan got a complete stranglehold on the story; and this reveal came right in the middle of the biggest mystery of the manga up to then, the question of who led Akatsuki, and spoiled the drama. It also marked the abandonment of Akatsuki's ingenious Arabian Nights Gambit; the initial replacement for that gambit didn't look as interesting.
The Ass Pull that occurs when the Kyuubi is about to break free once and for all. The fourth Hokage suddenly appears in Naruto's mind from out of nowhere, gives him a short pep talk, repairs the seal, and vanishes. This in itself was foreshadowed with the Third's explanation of how the seal works. But Naruto emerges almost unharmed; his skin should have literally boiled off during the short time Kyuubi was out, and he should not have been able to heal that quick. He was ready to take on Pain again with recharged chakra. It defuses what could have been the single most dramatic part of the entire manga with a Deus ex Machina.
Jiraiya stated that when the seal is restored and the transformation reversed (he used the key to loosen and then re-strengthen Naruto's seal the first time he went 4-tails), the chakra was able to heal his burns. When Yamato stopped Naruto's transformation back in the second arc, his technique forcefully subdued the Kyuubi, leaving Naruto unable to heal. Don't talk about the Sora Filler transformation; that was inconsistent.
Nagato manages to get even worse. He's just revealed that he had the power to raise the dead all along. En masse. He brings back the entire village of Konoha (whom he had just killed) and all the named characters he slaughtered (except Jiraiya). It is even implied that, if he hadn't been exhausted, then he could have done this without dying.
The village itself is still a smoking crater. This does not make the mass resurrection any less of a massive cop out.
Nagato has the ability to perform any Jutsu, up to and including mass resurrection. There are healing and repairing Jutsu out there. Why didn't Nagato perform one of the healing Jutsu on himself and fix his legs?
Hell, why didn't he go around raising people from the dead and preaching his gospel? He could have taken over the entire world with his brand shiny new religion, and he could have been the Messiah. Instead, see below.
We can probably declare chapter 449 to be official Worst Chapter in All of Naruto. It took the previous thirty chapters of intense drama and stunning action and undid most of the long-term effects all at once!
The Jyuubi. Way to give us another Ass Pull, Kishimoto. To elaborate: Throughout the entire series, we've been led to believe that the Tailed Beasts were real mythical beasts who could one day just happen to show up to wreak havoc upon your village. Then Madara reveals that they were nothing but by-products of this Jyuubi and were created from its powers when it was sealed inside the moon.
He said that he wants the body and that he wants to seal the demon inside himself. This violates the Evil Overlord rules on several levels... but there you go.
The existence of the Jyuubi had never even been hinted at before this chapter. It felt like Kishimoto had just made it up on the fly.
The Jyuubi idea had been seen in fanfiction since the Shukaku's appearance but before its canonical appearance. That might make it worse.
Kishi managed to top himself AGAIN. Naruto hyperventilated and collapsed while crying at the thought of Sasuke needing to be stopped. Remember, Naruto had successfully handled his mentor being killed, his village being nuked, and his mother-figure being put in a coma; he even forgave the guy responsible. But the mere thought of having to take Sasuke behind the shed has him collapsing in a panicked pile of childish immaturity. Naruto, ladies and gentlemen: the biggest disgrace of a shonen protagonist ever.
It's not that what Naruto is doing is illogical in itself. You can make a good argument that this development makes sense (see below for the good argument). But you just made a former Determinatorwimp out like a small child when, if he's worth his salt, he should be growing up, trying to find the right solution, or trying to consider the options. Making him wimp out and knock himself unconscious because the world isn't going the way he wants is NEVER the wisest option. There's a reason Shinji gets so much flack for that crap—but Shinji was always that kind of person in that kind of seriesnote It's also justifiable in the fact that in his world, children don't regularly put themselves in the line of combat to save the world from seemingly extraterrestrial beings. Naruto was a Determinator — why should he give up now?
While not as wall banging as Nagato's Deus ex Machina, the lack of interaction between Naruto and Hinata is mind boggling. What does Naruto do after returning to the village, after a girl declares her love for him and attempts to save his life even when she knows it's almost certain death for herself? Nothing! After declaring her love and getting a life-threatening smackdown, and upon seeing Naruto return, what does Hinata do? She cries tears of happiness with the rest of the crowd — nothing more. What the hell, Kishimoto?!
A simple "thank you" on Naruto's part would have been nice. Apparently, Hinata is not important enough even for that. That's what bugged a lot of people about the whole business. It felt as if Hinata was brought out solely to make her Anguished Declaration of Love and draw out the Kyuubi through her near-sacrifice. In other words, she was a simple tool to move the plot forward instead of a legitimate character. Now that she's done her job, she has become background noise once again.
Kishimoto had time to flesh out Konohamaru's relationship with Naruto. Granted, Konohamaru is more important to the storyline than Hinata, but just barely.
Sasuke decides to go to the Kage Summit to kill Danzo, the current acting Hokage. The problem? Danzo is surrounded by the other four Kages — who are all extraordinarily powerful ninja — each Kage's two Jounin bodyguards, the leader of the Land of Iron, and loads and loads of samurai security guards. Sasuke could have been killed several times over if it wasn't for the timely intervention of Madara Uchiha. Sasuke is effectively too dumb to consider living.
Made worse because Tobi expected Sasuke and Team Jobber to succeed so that Madara could hold them all hostage. Yes, Madara's plans were hinged on Sasuke and his Job Squad defeating an army of Samurai, five Kage, and their elite bodyguards.
No, he only wanted them to weaken them, and they succeeded. The Raikage walked away without an arm.
Danzo has several Sharingans! On his ARM! And the face of the Shodai on his shoulder. Why these developments are a problem:
It means that every main antagonist or antagonistic character (Madara, Sasuke, Danzo) has the Sharingan for no better reason than Sharingans being awesome. (See the Spotlight-Stealing Squad complaint above.)
Orochimaru specifically said that Yamato was the only replica of the First that could handle his cells. But Danzo is able to use them when only a single copy of the Shodai out of several can.
Danzo was working with Orochimaru. Obviously, the testing on Yamato and the others helped to perfect it with Danzo, who still couldn't use it well.
The Sharingans have another special technique; uber-illusions, inextinguishable magical fire, and literal Plot Armor weren't enough. This technique allows Danzo to choose to reject events such as his own death. At least he can't use whatever eye used the technique, right? Oh, wait, none of them are in his eyes. This is short-circuiting what had looked like canonical restrictions to Sharingans. Okay, maybe it'll just be One Shot Revisionism — maybe only Danzo will ever use this loophole — but still...
It got worse, see Konan fight below.
A relatively minor one: Sasuke went from willing to sacrifice himself to save his comrades against Killer Bee to abandoning them to go Danzo hunting in what couldn't be more than two weeks, for no clear reason.
Even with the mass resurrection, the Pain arc did one good thing: it made clear that Naruto was now a badass. Kishimoto, apparently angry at himself for making Naruto cool, spent two chapters turning Naruto into a complete pussy who humiliates himself over a guy who betrayed them for one of the village's worst enemies. Hell, even other characters seem to think this is stupid.
It doesn't help that Sasuke's currently working overtime to make Naruto look like a bigger and bigger idiot for being such a pussy in front of the reigning King of BadAss in Naruto, the Raikage, with each passing chapter.
Ever since the Pain arc, Kishimoto has been working overtime to piss away all the cred Naruto earned in the fight with Pain by successively portraying him as a punching bag, a beggar, a crybaby, and finally an indecisive pushover who faints when told to get over his lifelong obsession with Sasuke. Meanwhile, Sasuke has been merrily jumping from one Kage-level fight to another. Perhaps the mangaka has an ulterior motive in elevating his personal favourite character (hint: he's the younger of two surviving Uchihas) in the next popularity poll by derailing his rival and our (designated?) hero, Naruto.
There are several more problems with this development:
There is Moral Dissonance of Naruto implying dangerous repercussions to the Raikage's actions if he tries to stop a murderous criminal from acquiring Sealed Evil In a Can to hold the world hostage just because the criminal in question is the friend he swore to bring home alive.
This is the second time in a row that Naruto was faced with a difficult situation and had an emotional cop-out. This feeds into the third problem:
This is Character Derailment for one of the greatest Determinators in manga history. Naruto banishing his doubts and deciding that his old Nindo was just fine after all is fine. Naruto being smart and looking for a way out is fine. Naruto deciding to face facts and Shoot the Dog is also fine. Naruto wimping out and fainting because he can't face facts is not.
Sasuke is a murderer and a terrorist. Even though the Raikage's reasons for wanting to kill Sasuke have a personal edge, he isn't the only one who wants Sasuke's head. Naruto asking the Kumo leader to forgive Sasuke—who is still a revenge-fueled, traitorous criminal—is asking him and everyone else in the world to turn a blind eye to terrorism because otherwise feelings would be hurt. This degree of selfishness in a character who used to be a Messianic ArchetypeIdiot Hero is appalling. This guy wants to be in charge of a village?
Actually, Sasuke hasn't killed a single person until the Kage summit and as far as the world knows he personally took out two mass murderers, Orochimaru and Deidara. And Naruto never asked any one to turn a blind eye to Sasuke's action, just to put off the killing orders on him. Nothing is said against capturing him. No, the real Wall Banger here is that Naruto should have simply asked the Raikage to let him investigate the matter first. The Akatsuki are known for using mind control Jutsu before, so it's very possible that Sasuke could be forced to work for them. Add to that the fact that both Sand and Leaf had good reasons to hate both Deidara and Orochimaru, which will make Sasuke a hero to them because it's believed he killed them, and you have plenty of good reasons to convince the Raikage to let Naruto deal with Sasuke.
Kishimoto appears to be trying to derail Sakura's character by portraying her as a shallow bitch who's in the wrong. Naruto insists that she's "lying to herself" when she confesses love for him, that she still has feelings for Sasuke deep down, and that she is trying to use Naruto as the next best thing. But she doesn't seem nearly as in love with Sasuke as Naruto is; she has enough intelligence to try to hunt him down, while Naruto still insists on "saving him." Hell, Naruto even says that he understands why Sasuke wants to destroy the village and that he wants to help him ease the pain! The whole affair reeks of bad writing.
Can we drop the pretext and flat-out state that Sakura is now a Double Subversion of a Faux Action Girl or Damsel Scrappy? Sakura has been on a downhill slope ever since the end of the Gaara Arc, but the evidence is overwhelming now: Sakura is no Action Girl. Having to get rescued twice in two chapters because she was choked on both occasions after she deliberately sabotaged her own efforts to Shoot the Dog (seriously, couldn't she have told the others to stay back?) is bad enough; but one of the rescuers is the person who specifically told her to Stay in the Kitchen.
Sakura, you have SUPERSTRENGTH! And yet, you nearly die by being strangled twice. You could've broken his arm like a twig... but no...
Sakura hits it out of the park again! After seeing Naruto's controversial confrontation with Sasuke, she believes that her resolve is nothing compared to Naruto's, and all that's left for her to do is... believe in them. Not just believe in Naruto's ability to save the man who tried to kill her in cold blood, but believe in Naruto AND Sasuke. Not take part in this confrontation of wills or try to stop Sasuke herself so Naruto doesn't have to fight him and risk a Mutual Kill; just... stand uselessly on the sidelines and believe. Sakura's character development has essentially come full circle.
A big one: How is it that hardly anyone in the Leaf seems to know that Naruto is the son of the Fourth Hokage? It's been Handwaved by stating that Sarutobi must have covered it up, but that doesn't explain how. Naruto retains his mother's maiden name, and unless Minato and Kushina were married in secret (unlikely considering they lived in the same house and walked in public together) the connection would be obvious for everyone to make.
Minato's reasoning behind sealing Kyuubi into Naruto and not let Kushina take it with her when she died: I can't raise a kid,'cause I'm a guy. Also, he should have known what he was getting into when he was conceived by Shinobi parents. And worse, Kushina AGREES with him orphaning their child and pretty much condemning their son to a life of isolation and emotional abuse without argument.
Though it's more of blind trust considering that Naruto being the Jinchuriki became public knowledge but him being "the son of heroes" doesn't.
A continual Wall Banger is how little the women contribute to the plot. The last truly awesome battle we had was the Mizukage; that one had an Ass Pull to save her opponent, rendering it useless. This is taken to ridiculous heights in chapter 510. Satellite Character Konan faces off against Big Bad Tobi for Nagato's Rinnegan eyes. She's analyzed his ability and shows him OVER 600 BILLION exploding tags on paper - enough to keep him from phasing through since he can only maintain the technique for five minutes and the explosion will go on for ten. Does that work? No. Why? Tobi uses Izanagi (with an eye that was for no reason covered up) to survive the explosion and appear behind her. He stabs her through the gut and hypnotizes her, making the battle pointless and stuffing Konan into the fridge. Have pity for these poor women who find themselves in Kishimoto's work.
At least it meant something. Her awesome Heroic Sacrifice at least limited Big Bad Madara to one Izanagi, unless Kishi cops out again.
Tobi's got a wall full of Sharingans. Several dozen at least. That poison bug guy getting Tobi to tear an arm off is about how effective Konan's attack was.
It's worse. Tobi simply used Pain's Rinnegan eye as a replacement.
But wait! There's more. Now, if Izanagi alone had been the reason for Madara's victory, it would have stayed within the established Sharingan powers as displayed by Danzo. But no, it turns out Tobi won vs. Senju even though previous canon seems to suggest otherwise. The dialog suggests it may just be a moral victory (Immoral Victory?), but even this interpretation contradicts all his previous hints about being "a shadow" of his former self. Anyway, he took the First Hokage's Senju powers (or whatever) and made himself the second Sage of the Six Paths. He also did something to Nagato, who turns out to be an Uzumaki with no prior hints of it, to make him the third Sage. And Izanagi turns out to be an ability only those with the powers of the Sage can use, which means Danzo either knew as much as Madara about the subject or lucked out in his choice of powers. In fact, Madara says that Danzo's version was incomplete and that the real Izanagi is true reality-warping power — it's how the first Sage made the nine tailed beasts. It's as if he's on the path to become a VillainGod-Mode Sue. The Uchiha Plot Tumor just keeps on GROWING to absurd levels, and all of them probably have Plot Armor now. In fact, thanks to this logic, it seems as if Naruto himself is on the path to getting an upgrade to being the fourth Sage because of that crow Itachi made him deep-throat all those chapters ago. All that's left is for Sasuke to get his hands on a similar power, which could be Nagato's eyes, and essentially the Uchiha will be the one and only reason anyone in the manga ever succeeds at anything.
In regards to the point about Sasuke, it gets worse: Sharingans can transform into Rinnegans somehow, if an Uchiha is given Senju DNA. The villains have access to plenty of Senju DNA - enough to power up an entire army of Zetsus and then some. We're over 50% of the way to a massive Wall Banger.
Nagato's eyes are actually Madara's. When or how he did it's never explained.
Possibly worst of all, Naruto not only inherited the 'Will' of the Senju clan but is actually a blood relative and by extension a descendant of the Sage of Six Paths! This puts the final nail in the coffin of the whole 'Destiny doesn't matter' theme from Part 1 because all the major events with Naruto in the Ninja World, from his rivalry with Sasuke to his eventual confrontation of Madara have been declared as being set up by the old Uchiha-Senju connection as they are reincarnations of the sage of six paths son destined to do battle with the sage of six path's other son forever. Looks like Neji was right after all. Fate decides everything.
The Sage of the Six Path later has the audacity to claim that "No matter how excellent the parents are, the child doesn't necessarily inherit their whole potential." while up until then the series proves the opposite statement.
It goes much further than that when you think about it. Naruto is related to 4 of the 5 Hokage note 3 of them are indirectly(Sarutobi is the only one he isn't), comes from a clan with a Kekkai Genkai that ruled it's own ninja village, is descended from the RikkudoSennin and had the most powerful of the Bijuu sealed into him at birth. So instead of the no name commoner he was presented as, Naruto has the most prolific pedigree of any character in the entire series.
The fight with Nagato. Okay, not only does Naruto lose about every braincell he has to even forget something he realized five seconds ago, Kabuto loses every braincell and actually forgets about Itachi, the S-rank ninja who just broke free of his control. No, seriously. He just forgot he was there despite wanting Shisui's eye and everything. He makes Nagato act like an idiot, literally making no move to fight with any nobility. Itachi's Gary stu-ism level also leaps off the charts. While Naruto and Bee panic, Itachi just calmly analyzes everything and forms a plan and defeats Nagato more or less instantly in a single chapter. The most hyped character in the entire manga goes down with almost no fight whatsoever. Even if he's fighting something far, far out of his league, Itachi will always win with no difficulty at all. It's gotten way too much.
Oh, look, now Itachi is taking the lead against Kabuto so his brother is relegated to sidekick status despite having the Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan. Itachi is revealed to have ANOTHER trump card in Izanami and Kabuto can't even get the upper hand once. Except when Itachi is so PURE AND PERFECT that he takes the hit to save his poor dear brother. Everyone'd be lost without Itachi! Fucking Stu.
Naruto vs Sasuke at the Valley of the End. Naruto blaming himself when he THREW the fight when he purposely went for Sasuke's headband.
Whenever Naruto appears to be growing as a character, he seems to immediately take a level in dumbass. Made worse by the fact that the characters regularly comment on the fact.
The Resurrection of the real Madara; in his first attack he takes out most the 4th division and wounds Onoki, with the ability to drop meteors out of nowhere, when the 2nd Mizukage, Tsuchikage and the No SellingJuggernaut that is the Third Raikage could not despite their badassness, and here's the real headbutt, because he appeared all of a sudden the other three decide to join forces with the other two. Just to prove that once an Uchiha is on the battlefield everyone will get worfed, the Second Tsuchikage gets effortlessly bitchslapped away.
In addition to that his Eternal Mangekyou Sharingan. He has both Mokuton and Rinnegan. On top of that he's an immortal zombie. Only the Author Can Save Them Now indeed.
Anko and Tenten are apparently some of Kishimoto's favourite characters. Tenten is also apparently only there to be third of Team Gai as she was randomly defeated off panel. The first time Anko appears after the Chunnin Exam/Invasion arc is THE INVASION OF PAIN, SIX YEARS LATER!!! You want to know who his favourite is? Sasuke. Tells you something doesn't it.
And Anko was pretty much stuffed into a fridge soon after to act as a powerup for Kabuto. Though there may be a chance for Anko to escape considering she's not dead... yet.
The entire Itachi and Sasuke vs Kabuto fight. Kabuto, who had been hyped as potential Big Bad has to be injected with a 'quest' to find his true self so Itachi, the God-Mode Sue that he is, can find his problem and fix it with Izanami, which is a technique specifically created for the battle so Itachi can get away with yet another win.
The history of the technique is just as ridiculous. Apparently it was created to punish the Uchiha who were abusing the (Senju DNA required) Izanagi.
It gets worse; Sasuke, who just activated the Eternal Mangenkyo Sharingan and gets worfed.
Kabuto's powers. Basically, all of his abilities he's gained via LEGO Genetics. Gaining someone's Kekkei Genkai via blood transfusion is par for the course. But Kabuto also uses it to learn (amoung others) Jirobo's earth techniques and Tayuya's genjutsu, completely ignoring that both are just techniques, not bloodline abilities. No, just no.
Genma, Raido and some other guy know Hiraishin. Just those five words. When Jiraiya, his teacher and Kakashi, his student allegedly don't but some nobody that has never been seen or named does. That is the worse case of New Powers as the Plot Demands, EVER!!!
Just a bunch of these no names that have appeared through the Shinobi War arc. It doesn't get any dumber than two no-names apparently having the power of a jinchuriki after being barfed out by Kyuubi.
Tobi being involved with the freeing of Kyuubi from Kushina's seal. Because now we know that Tobi wants to use the Kyuubi to destroy Konoha, that he can easily enter and leave Konoha whenever he wants, and that the only people who know that he exists (Minato and Kushina) are both dead. The wallbanger is that he completely ignores Naruto and the Kyuubi for 13 years, despite the fact he could easily capture Naruto with noone being the wiser. Hell, he could have done it as an afterthought while he was in Konoha helping Itachi murder the rest of the Uchiha.
Madara somehow knows Edo Tensei and as a result breaks free of the jutsu just as it's released. So now Madara has all the benefits of Edo Tensei but it's impossible to release it.
What's even worse was the fact that Hashirama and namely Tobirama, it's creator didn't break out of the incomplete version.
Chapter 599 was almost entirely flashbacks of Obito's career. It shows that Kakashi always showed him up at the Academy and the Chuunin exam. And when he did get promoted to Chuunin, his promotion was overshadowed by Kakashi becoming a Jonin. The problem? Obito was the same age as Kakashi and became a Genin when he was 9 and made Chuunin at 11. Kakashi was already a chuunin when was 6 and a Jonin when he was 13. So Kakashi was a Chuunin for 3 years before Obito was a ninja and wasn't promoted to Jonin until 2 years after Obito made Chuunin. How did Kakashi overshadow him on all these occasions again?
The same chapter reveals Tobi's identity as Obito. To say this reveal lacks any amount of common sense would be underselling it. Kishimoto's going to have to pull yet another Ass Pull.
On a note related to the age screw up, the chapter also shows Obito standing in front of the Hokage memorial... with Minato's face as one of the faces. This would be fine and dandy, except for the fact Minato wasn't hokage until after Obito died!
But wait there's more! The ages of people in Obito's class vary by almost 10 years. Hayate and Raido were both in Obito's class. Except Hayate was 23 when he died during part 1 and Raido was 32. Given that every ninja from before Naruto's generation graduated earlier than he did, by the time anyone was old enough to actually learn anything (Kakashi made Genin when he was 5), anyone 9 years older would have already been a Genin for a few years, if not a Chuunin.
Tobi's /Obito's apparent reason for turning evil. It was because Rin died. That's it.
Chapter 629 reveals that he already knew why Rin died and claims that he didn't wage war over her. He says that he's just fed up with the "fake world" and wants to change it by force with an illusion... yeah. All because Rin died. It's as if he found out later on in his life what happened to Rin and said "That's why she died? Okay, but I'm still gonna be evil".
Seems like every villain nowadays has a "Woe is me, it's everyone else's fault I'm evil despite the fact I've went and killed defenseless people and plan on destroying everything." There's a word for that, Wangst. Every bad guy is now a goddamn Emo. Remember Orochimaru? Remember how much he was hated by both the characters and the fanbase and reveled in what he did? He's the only Villain who was actually a Villain instead of some wrist cutting wannabes who whine about how things didn't go their way.
The Uzumaki Clan had a temple/compound right outside Konoha. What? So did Naruto and all his friends, just miss this place their whole lives?
If there was something like a S Ranked Genjutsu masking its presence or if it was in a Hidden Area in The Forest of Death then yeah it could be explained why but there wasn't. You mean no one in Konoha ever noticed that Temple right outside Konoha? There's stupidity, and then there's The Simpsons stupidity. Guess which one they fall into?
It gets better, the Uzumaki had a mask that lets someone reverse the Shiki Fūjin at the cost of their life (unless of course you're someone like Orochimaru who just possesses a new body). Really? Letting someone steal back souls from the God of Death? And of course, Orochimaru immediately summons the four dead Hokage using Edo Tensei.
And why were these obviously powerful and dangerous artifacts not being kept under guard?
On the topic of the Uzumaki, the fact that they all possess extremely long lifespans stung rather hard for me. I was under the impression that this was the story about an underdog, starts out with practically nothing to his name, and then rises to the top through hard work. The fact that Naruto has something like a ridiculously long lifespan that he inherits with absolutely no work on his part broke that impression quite definitively.
It's become a bit of a meme about how broken that aesop is in this series but to be brief, the primary fight that is meant to embody that trope is Naruto vs Neji where he only wins due to the Kyuubi chakra that was given to him at birth. Sure he did a little training to use it but most of his Jiriya training went into learning the Summoning Jutsu. Rock Lee is similarly a representative of hardwork but is never shown to win a fight in the series, sure he proves he's capable in his own right but he never overcomes plot armor and is left as worf bait. And to throw salt on the wound, Sasuke is able to copy his speed thanks to his inherited sharingan and while he can't use it to the same extent, he's clearly able to skip over massive swaths of the training Lee did to get to the same place.
Chapter 620. Sasuke tells the resurrected Hokage that if he doesn't like their answers, he's going to destroy Konoha. Tobirama says he'll kill Sasuke first and moves to do so. Hashirama immediately stops him and basically says, "This is no place for your prejudice against the Uchiha." To make it even better, Hashirama states that they had better answer his questions or he could "turn into another Madara." So, if he's planning on destroying your home and has the potential to equal the Big Bad, what's the problem with killing him?
It really is maddening how the story continuously trips over itself to keep Sasuke or Itachi from ever being criticized by anyone over their actions. Sasuke at this point has killed innocent people who tried to stop him invading their home, has sacrificed his comrades, attempted murder on multiple occasions, betrayed his home and sought to kill his former comrades... but people comment how he's still 'pure.' Itachi is even worse. He aided Akatsuki, never once attempted to stop them in any meaningful way, had zero contingency plan for Pain should Tobi die, ordered Kisame to kill Konoha ninja, mentally tortured Kakashi, tortured Sasuke into a coma, among other things? Naruto has nothing but gushing praise for him, even asking he meet Sasuke, despite Itachi being responsible for Sasuke's descent into darkness. Killer Bee has no problem with Itachi planning to Mind Rape Sasuke into a slave of Konoha, because we all know Bee would approve of controlling elder brothers. Hiruzen Sarutobi gushes about how wise Itachi was at the age of freaking seven and Hashirama Senju, the other God of Shinobi cheerfully admits Itachi was a better Shinobi than him. Only Itachi criticizes himself to make himself look more humble, and thus more praiseworthy.
The revelation that Uchiha are only evil because they can't take losses well. It just seems like it was a forced attempt to make them sympathetic. All it does it make them look perhaps even more petty than they already do.
Add onto that that the revelation only says "Uchiha feel love stronger than other people" (Which also comes off as an ass pull because we only see Uchiha as either relatively average like Sasuke's mother, or brooding and serious like his father, Obito was the only upbeat Uchiha we've seen), which is to say that it somehow is meant to justify how they let it turn to hate so easily. That "Uchiha love" might be used to give a flimsy excuse for Sasuke hating Itachi so much but it doesn't help the fact that it didn't bother him enough to stop him from trying to kill who he acknowledged as his best friend in the world.
The absolute schizophrenia over how events have gone. Despite being hyped against the Masked Man, Naruto barely manages anything against him. The fight is a massive team battle and any personal enmity between the two, of which there had been a lot of build up for (including the Five Kages telling Naruto to defeat him), vanish when Tobi's identity is revealed. The fact that Tobi corrupted Sasuke, killed Naruto's parents and killed Konan, who fought to her last breath believing in Naruto to the end does not matter at all. Madara then arrives, who has no personal conflict with Naruto, and his fight with Naruto is glossed over completely. Then the fight become one major group battle with Naruto being unable to get much done in his own freaking series and nearly surrendering to despair until Hinataslaps sense into him. It's insane how the main character can't have a straight fight with the main villains of his series. Sasuke had far more chances to show solo skills than Naruto throughout part 2.
In Chapter 627 the Four Hokage are off to the war front! And Sasuke, Juugo, Orochimaru, Suigetsu, and Karin are going to help as well. Really? Suigetsu doesn't care and Juugo will go wherever Sasuke goes. But Sasuke had not only been driven to destroy Konoha but was quite obviously suffering from Sanity Slippage. Orochimaru has in every appearance demonstrated that he's a monster. And Karin had up until this chapter been the only sane person to be betrayed by Sasuke. Everyone else who he almost kills shrugs it off and decides to keep trying to "save" him. Karin had decided she was done with him after he tried to kill her (it helped that her sensor powers pretty much told her he was completely evil) and now she's acting like a Stalker with a Crush all over again, flat-out saying she can't stay mad at him. Like Sakura, her Character Development has been completely and utterly reset.
Remember how when Naruto first began it was about how if you believe in yourself and work hard and never give up, your dreams would come true? Neither do I. All you need is a a fancy pair of eyes and the whole world will line up to say how great you are :P
Also, do you know how the manga has been slowly building itself up to Naruto and Sasuke having a big battle of strength, determination, and beliefs? How Naruto's sacrificed so much of himself and believed in Sasuke when everyone else decided (rightfully) that Sasuke was an insane supercriminal, and it'd be up to Naruto to change Sasuke's heart? Well, forget all that! Sasuke talks to Itachi, hears a story from the First Hokage whose message is about how ninja are all about enduring, and he's suddenly a good guy again! Remember all that sacrificing and belief and determination from Naruto? All completely meaningless and an utter waste of time! Hell, the best you could say is that Naruto has the vaguest of connections to this change (asking Itachi to talk to Sasuke) which could have been done by pretty much anybody. So, combined with the fact the significance of Naruto's connection with Tobi has pretty much been dropped in favor of army vs. supermonster battle, we could pretty much replace Naruto with an Amplifier Artifact that gives the army a powerup and nothing would really change.
Jiraiya is on the verge of capturing Itachi: Only for the absurdly powerful Amaterasu to pop up and burn his way through.
Naruto vs Sasuke at the Valley Of The End: after all his boasting that he'd drag Sasuke back to the village, Naruto throws the damn fight by scratching Sasuke's headband. It's like he flashed back to their fight on the hospital roof and forgot where he was in the present. You could have punched in the head. That'd have left a fucking mark!
Naruto vs Sasuke at Orochimaru's hideout: Sasuke suppresses Kurama's power out of nowhere.
The Sasuke vs Deidara fight: an exhausted Sasuke can suddenly pull off a Kage level summon and reverse summon with mind-control on top of that after Deidara had already exploded.
Sasuke vs Itachi: Sasuke tried to fry the Death Seeker only for Susanoo to pop up and deflect EVERY attack Sasuke throws at him.
Sasuke vs Killer Bee: Sasuke survives thanks to Team Hawk's gaining two separate healing abilities out of nowhere.
Sasuke vs the Kages: Almost dies by melting from but Zetsu pops up and absorbs her Chakra, then almost gets disintegrated but Tobi grabs him at the last second.
The previously mentioned Sakura and Sasuke encounter after his fight with Danzo.
Tobi vs Konan: Konan bombards her opponent with BILLIONS of explosive tags. Only for Tobi to use Izanagi with FUCKING LEFT EYE! That was NEVER shown.
Tobi wants info on the shinobi alliance: He gets it thanks to Guy opening the scroll and activating the trap Kisame had planted, instead of disposing of it.
Itachi And Nagato vs Naruto and Killer Bee: Itachi pulls off the most ridiculous Chekhov's Gun ever and breaks free of Kabuto and practically single-handedly defeats Nagato
Itachi and Sasuke vs Kabuto: Itachi wins after bringing out yet another Asspull the Izanagi.
Madara vs Naruto, Gaara, Onoki and the rest of the fourth battle company: Madara absorbs a Rasenshuriken after activating the Rinnegan and later drops two mountain-sized meteors out of thin air
Tobi revives the Juubi because he had a small portion of Gyuki's tail and the Kin-gin brothers' chakra.
Madara vs Tailed beasts, the tailed beat him up like a punching bag only for him to use Susanoo without eyes to break from the sand pyramid.
Itachi wants Sasuke to kill him. Only for Itachi to No SellALL OF Sasuke's ATTACKS!!!
The Kurama Clan Arc: Kurenai is explicitly stated to be Yakumo's legal guardian. She knows that Yakumo is less than sane and that she has a ridiculously powerful demon trapped inside of her. But rather than, say, getting her a caretaker, she leaves Yakumo alone in a dark, isolated mansion. One wonders why she isn't charged with abusive neglect, but considering the series we're in...
The Reveal that the reason Kakashi killed Rin was because she asked him to after she was kidnapped by the Hidden Mist Village and forcibly made into the Sanbi's host so she'd rampage and destroy the village eventually, in a way that just screamsAss Pull... At no other point of the entire series is hinted at that and no proper development is given to it, specially considering how much of an important plot point the Tailed Beasts are. It comes off not only as an Ass Pull, but an Ass Pull that feels like a cheap attempt to give Obito a better reason for his Face-Heel Turn other than just "You let Rin die.".
Kakashi predictably refuses only for Rin to literally jump in front of him while mid-attack.
Hell, why the heck was she running towards Konoha in the first place? That was what Mist wanted her to do. She should've stopped running and turn on her "pursuers" and threaten to release it in Kirigakure and on them instead of going home where if unleashed he would cause havoc and destruction. If there's an Idiot Olympics in Naruto, she's a clear front runner for the Gold.
Not to mention that contact with Minato, an expert on sealing jutsu, was more than possible. The very least Rin could've done was, you know, try and stall the procedure until Minato was in a position where he could attempt to save her.
The "Uchihas love more than anybody" bullshit of an excuse is one of the stupidest things in manga. Yeah, sure and the founder of the clan who resented his brother who was named the Sage of Six Path's heir instead of him did it out of love. Also they threatened a coup on Konoha and were willing to kill thousands of people out of love. Not to mention Tobi, who threatened to kill a minute old Naruto out of love, of course Sasuke nearly impaling Sakura and trying to kill both Kakashi and Naruto numerous times he did out of love. And finally Madara killing off hundreds of people including Ino and Shikamaru's dads he did out of love. You know what they love? Power and Control. That's the only thing that matters to them and they'll do whatever it takes to obtain them as they can't stand the fact that someone could be better than them or be higher than them. (Sasuke calling Kakashi a thief and lowlife when he reveals his own Mangekyo for example, hey jackass your entire clan is built on them stealing from others and killing those who oppose you!)
The biggest issue with this reveal is that it's just such horrifically lazy writing. In essence, the Uchihas all have a Freudian Excuse genetically built into them, so the effort of writing actual motivations for them doesn't have to be put in. In essence, the narrative has given the entire Uchiha clan a collective "get out of consequences free" card, as they'll still be treated as redeemable fallen friends, who are simply walking down the wrong path, no matter how horrible their actions are.
Apparently learning a new Jutsu is infinitely easier than readers have been lead to believe. The ENTIRE Shinobi army learns and uses a brand new jutsu in seconds. Juubi is preparing a massive attack and Shikamaru telepathically asks Kitsuchi for the hand signs for an earth wall jutsu then sends the hand signs to the rest of the army. Said army then gets into position and summons thousands of walls. All of this in the seconds it took for Juubi to charge up its Wave Motion Gun.
Chapter 631, where to begin? Minato showing up and going Kyuubi cloak, something that took Naruto so much to obtain, like it was nothing. Then Sasuke shows up and claims he's gonna be Hokage, apparently ignoring all of his various crimes, though at least most of the characters (except Naruto naturally) treated him as an idiot for it. And then there's the NaruSaku shipping moment, which involves Sakura, predictably, violently striking Naruto when he replies to Minato's question of if Sakura is his girlfriend and Minato thinks about how she's like Kushina. Poor Hinata, despite being supportive, understanding, and loyal to Naruto, is treated like she doesn't exist by the blonde idiot when there's even a hint of him and Sakura getting together despite all the abuse she gives him (which, in this particular case, he had coming to him!)
632 has the Ass Pull that Sakura has been an S-rank fighter ever since the timeskip but hasn't fought at full power because she's been charging the Souzou Saisei for the last three years. Made even worse by 1) Sakura had previously been lamenting how pathetically weak she was and 2) Shizune stating that she never managed to learn the Souzou Saisei. Shizune has been Tsunade's apprentice and a Jounin longer than Sakura has been alive but somehow Sakura still learns in a few months what Shizune couldn't in over a decade.
Given that Naruto mastered Sage Mode in a couple of months where Jiraiya hadn't in some 20 years, this is par for the course.
It's even more jarring how she ignores Naruto and gives most of the credit to Sasuke.
In 633, Sai makes an reappearance and is almost immediately taken down.
And during the whole "showing off our badass moves" montage, what does Hinata do? The 64 Trigram Palms. Her big "look how I've improved" move is doing something Neji did THREE years ago while he was a Genin.
Uchiha Sasuke and his relations are responsible, directly or indirectly, for at least 50% of the wallbangers in Naruto. Those he is directly responsible for tend to be Deus Ex Machinas that allow him to win a fight.
Even worse is the main character. While Sasuke has plenty of offscreen training that could potentially answer some of the asspulls, Naruto has no such excuse. His entire strategy resolves around spamming shadow clones and different Rasengans until one of them finally works- several of the movies have even been solved by him pulling a different Rasengan out of his ass. If he is going to fight an enemy he wouldn't be able to beat with that alone, or with the Kyuubi giving him power, the previous chapters are conveniently concerned with giving him new upgrades that rocket him from chunin to jonin to kage levels. It's not just with the fights, either: army of plant men copying your soldiers perfectly? Give Naruto the ability to sense them anyway, making him the best ninja in the world (that we know of) in a field he has put precisely zero effort or interest into. Plot armor is big in the series, to say the least.
Said Plant men in itself "oh look how broken can we make our villains I KNOW why not have them be able to perfectly copy anyone they touch." Then we pull an Only the Author Can Save Them Now excuse. Brilliant. It's also made bad in that Naruto can find them by sensing their evil intent. We've seen that there are PLENTY of very evil characters that are bound to exist in a world where children are raised to be assassins, there's no reason why Naruto can sense the opposing army's evil clones and overlook similar evil intent from allies.
One mirror-fight in the "Rescue Gaara" arc has Team Gai pulling a "We must become better than ourselves - oh, wait, we just did" Deus ex Machina ending.
For Gai and Lee, anyway. Neji and Tenten can be justified because they just invented new overkill techs on the spot.
Note: This didn't happen in the manga; it was fluff for the anime.
Considering the clones were explicitly exactly as strong as when they were created, with no increases or decreases over time, it would have made more sense to just have Guy and Lee open a chakra gate, beat up their clones, then go help the others.
At least Guy should have had no way to get out of this fight alive: He can open all 8 chakra gates, so his clone can, too. This would kick his clone up to kage levels and beyond. The only way for Guy to defeat his clone then would have been to open the gates, too. But you die after doing that. The clone would not have had a problem with that, but Guy would have been dead even if he managed to defeat the clone. Idiot Ball on part of the clone/"programmer", indeed.
The existence of mirror clones at all is one. Because it seems to have no limit at all. It's able to copy both bloodline limits and the skills of the target, it's a technique that's ludicrously powerful but some how it's only used to guard a door. Just think about the implications if this was used as anything other than a glorified bouncer. With Neji, if his clone ran away instead then the akatsuki now has a free set of Byakugan, eyes that previously almost started a war over whether or not a village could steal them. And with Gai, they had a user of 8 gates under their control that was DISPOSABLE. Power repeatedly said to surpass a Kage that they snatched up with this mirror thing and again, it's only used to block the door to a cave.
The way the Pein vs. Kyuubified Naruto fight was animated turned what had been a serious, intense fight into an Anime Looney Tunes.
It would have made sense if it knocked him out until Hinata attempts to get the last spike out of Naruto's hands.
Itachi. Fucking. Uchiha. So Sasuke is a huge bastard jerkass who wants to kill everyone? Well, he can't take all the credit. Basically, everything that made Sasuke who he is came from Itachi and stupid decisions. Worse is that Kishimoto's volumes play Itachi ON A POSITIVE LIGHT!!! I don't care if some of the Uchiha are jerks, nothing justifies genocide and brainwashing people into becoming slaves like Itachi did! What's worse is that people actually ROOT FOR ITACHI KILLING THE UCHIHA CLAN!! Just because they don't like Sasuke for being a bastard, which he is because of Itachi!!!
Hashirama calling Itachi a better shinobi than him.
Even more wallbangery part of that moment is that in theory it makes sense if he was talking about the activities they are supposed to perform. A Shinobi is supposed to be all over assassination, spying, espionage, etc. Itachi went the whole nine yards, while Hashirama did none of that. In fact, because of this and his optimistic bent his concept of shinobi is probably FAR different from what is mentioned above, so Hashirama is basically calling Itachi not just a better ninja, but a better person.
Hmm, Hinata's first attack in Shippudden is 32 palms. 32 PALMS. When Neji was a genin he could do 4 times as much. So Hinata as a chunnin is still weaker than Neji when he was a genin.
It gets better. She now knows the 64 palms meaning she's half as strong as Neji was when he was thirteen.
Tobi is Obito Uchiha, and his reason for wanting to use Mugen Tsukiyomi on the world is because Rin died. Way to go, Masashi Kishimoto; you have succeeded in making the main Big Bad for the past five years into nothing more than a wangsty Uchiha brat.
Worse, Kishimoto butchered one of the series' most beloved characters, and the guy who made Kakashi everything that he is, to boot. If Obito had been given a more admirable motivation for his actions, then he'd still be cool even now and might work as the Big Bad. Instead, Kishi is convinced that the only sort of villain that works is a wangsty whiner with a trite reason for throwing away his compassion. Just because heaven forbid villains are actually cool (*cough* Zabuza/Orochimaru/Danzo/etc. *cough*) Well played, Kishimoto. Well bloody played.
Also the fact that making a dream world illusion with the moon implies that he wants everyone to be in it, as in, making a global (though by force) utopia. Misguided, but not malicious... though for some reason he's rather happy to do attacks that only cause misery and destroy morale. So is he a misguided wangsty guy trying to force peace or just a sadist?
Also the fact that he bothered to involve literally anyone else at all. If he really wanted to get the job done he could have just teleported in, grabbed the tailed beasts' hosts and teleported out. Take a few weeks to extract each beast, cast the Infinite Tsukuyomi whenever you feel like it. Instead he waits twenty years, screws around with Akatsuki, sits around with his thumb up his butt, reveals himself to Naruto et al and starts a war all for literally no reason. Quality writing there, Kishimoto.
Part of the reason for causing such a commotion is eventually said to be himself doubting the plan and wanting to be proven wrong by someone like Naruto. Which looks like another attempt to make him sympathetic despite how evil it all is. I'm only seeing a few possible rationales and none of them are good. Either he's insane, thinking the world is an illusion and his perfect dreams are the real world, which makes him not as bad as a murderer in his own eyes but still speaks to evil tenancies (stabbing a pillow with the face of someone you hate isn't murder but it isn't heroic at all either). Or he doesn't think that and wants to be proven wrong by someone like Naruto, which says he values the opinions of others meaning he views others as living beings with thoughts and feelings worth considering... making him a murderer.
Also the tailed Beast fight, which turned out to be completely unnecessary. It was just Fanservice for the Jinchuuriki. Naruto actually benefited from this.
Unlike the other teams who constantly interact with their Sensei on a regular basis, Team Kurenai had never been seen together at all. It doesn't make it better that Shikamaru sort of takes care of her now.
In Episode 257 of Shippudden: The lonely orphan named Naruto wants to know about his parents. The so-called gentle and kind old man, known as the Sandaime Hokage says no because it won't bring them Back from the Dead. What kind of person would say that to a little kid?
If you ever wonder why some Toonami fans snarl in rage whenever you bring up Naruto, just take a look at the seemingly endless Filler at the end of Part 1. Now sometimes Filler is needed in case the show Over Takes The Manga and some can be good. However most if not ALL the filler of Naruto was terrible. Stupid plots, Character Derailment, everyone suddenly losing all their IQ points, Naruto being a bigger dumbass than usual, and The Stupid Brothers it went on and on for a year and it didn't help that Cartoon Network showed Marathons of it on Toonami instead of other shows. It went like this, Naruto says something stupid, Sakura punches him, Hinata faints, Villain of the Week with stupid idea shows up. Wash, Rinse, and Repeat. Take a drink for each episode where something stupid happens or they act OOC, you'll be dead in five minutes. Ratings started to tank and yet they insisted on showing the filler before airing Shippuden. So to some Toonami fans, Naruto is the reason it got cancelled.
The fact that every single mother (sans Kiba's mom) stayed home from the 4th Shinobi War. Kurenai staying home despite being a jounin makes a sort of sense given that her child is at most a couple months old. All the other mothers not only have kids in their teens, but said kids are fighting in the war. Most of them outrank their children too! Guess once a kunoichi becomes a mother she has to Stay in the Kitchen.
The Blood Prison movie: starts off with Konoha sending Naruto to prison. It was his mission for him to destroy the box of willingness. However, Naruto was kept in the dark about this. He had no decent backup either. Chances are if it wasn't for Ryuuzetsu, he would have never have known about the box.
And when Naruto finds out about this plan to destroy the box of willingness in the prison that he wasn't told of, what does he do? Does he show resentment for this? Is there any anger about the fact that none of his so-called 'friends' so much as raised a single complaint about sending him to prison to be physically and emotionally tortured without telling him the plan? How about justifiable outrage in regards to the emotional turmoil them seeming abandonment no doubt caused him? No, he completely and immediately forgives them. THANK GOODNESS, that it's not canon.
The OVA has Naruto vs Konohamaru at the Chuunin Exams ends with Naruto getting DQ'd because of the handicap placed against him and only him. Since only he knew Sage Mode and more importantly, he doesn't become a chunnin. Also, Konohamaru has the audacity to demand that Naruto becomes his subordinate. Congratulations Konohamaru, you've just jumped back to being The Scrappy.
Made even worse since it's made very clear that the Chuunin Exams have an "Anything Goes" policy during actual combat portions of the exam.
The Road To Ninja movie: Sakura is praised as the daughter of heroes, in contrast to Naruto, who was never told like the rest of the village.
Menma IS the wallbanger, after The Reveal that he is the Masked Man. The whole thing turned on its head. Apparently, he pulled a mysterious Face-Heel Turn, dyed his hair black and conveniently disappeared sometime before Naruto arrived.
And Minato pretty much says they're the "main characters". I guess Sakura tripped and broke her ankle while "making Naruto and Sasuke stare at her back", allowing them to pass her again and making sure she stayed where she belongs.
Also from 641: While undeniably awesome, exactly how/when did Minato and Tobirama come up with a Hiraishin technique to let them switch places? They have literally never met but they somehow have the teamwork to simultaneously teleport to each other's locations so they functionally switch places.
As shown in 644 and 645, Kishimoto can't make up his mind whether Naruto is an Idiot Savant or Too Dumb to Live. One moment Naruto is the only one to realize that Obito can still be hurt by sage techniques. The next he goes charging into battle without using sage mode.
Made worse by the fact that Naruto took a serious dive in intelligence between not just Part 1 and Part 2, but even from the beginning of Part 2 and now. In Part 1, he was cocky, self-assured, and a little Book Dumb, but that was more from lack of training than anything else. And even then, he showed a level of tactical intelligence and ability to learn new jutsu quickly that surprised everyone. Hell, he made Kakashi's joke technique "Thousand Years of Pain" into a serious technique and invented the "Uzumaki Naruto Combo" after seeing Sasuke do the Lion Combo once (despite Kakashi trying to downplay it). Now he's pretty much a complete idiot who somehow doesn't even know how babies are made and forgets things HE JUST POINTED OUT HIMSELF.
Way back when Tobi released the Kyuubi/Kurama from Kushina and she and Minato sacrificed themselves to seal Kurama in Naruto, there's one glaring problem. There's an enemy that can get through their security whenever he wants (he not only found and broke into the secret and sealed off area Kushina was in, he killed all their guards before they raised the alarm) who's clearly after the Kyuubi and thus Naruto. It never occurs to Minato or Kushina to maybe warn someone about Tobi before they die. If Tobi was even remotely competent, he would have kidnapped Naruto a few weeks later and either released Kurama again or brainwashed Naruto into a Laser Guided Tyke Bomb.
The Third Hokage proving that Elemental rock-paper-scissors only mattered so Sasuke could defeat Deidera. For the longest time it seemed that the only reason this was thrown into the plot was to explain how sasuke could nullify explosive clay with his chidori as other clashes could easily be explained away with just power levels but preventing explosions needed an actual reason for happening. But now we have the scene where the 10-tails fires 5 massive elemental blasts at the ninja army which is countered by the Third using shadow clones to return fire. Does he use elemental advantages to stop each blast with a superior element? Nope, he uses EQUAL elements to fire back at each one, so instead of showing off your intelligence as one of the best ninja ever, he uses a strategy that requires exactly the same amount of power as the enemy. No strategy at all, just brute force.
Chapter 648: Sasuke can suddenly pull Nature Chakra from Juugo and combine it with his Susanoo to make it resemble his old C2 form because... Well, because we can't have an Uchiha sitting on the sideline like the commoners and watch while Naruto, who TRAINED to wield nature chakra, gets some glory of his own.
Orochimaru practically gushing about how Sasuke will become even stronger and one day surpass Madara. Are you serious! Orochimaru not once was he ever subservient to anybody, not Sarutobi, not Pein, and he certainly ain't subservient to some prick! You have effectively ruined the only character in the series who you could call a villain. Shippuden might as well be non canon.
What makes the above wallbanger even more hysterical? When Nature Chakra was first introduced during the Pain arc, it was stated that if you aren't careful with it you will permanently be turned into a frog statue. A body of Pain suffered this onscreen to emphasize this. This leaves us with either two options for the above Saskue moment, neither very good:
Either Sasuke is just that special to be able to get by this in a few panels,
Or Kishimoto is outright ignoring previous canon so Sasuke can do this. Come to think of it, how does Juugo have Nature Chakra?
Allegedly, all of Juugo's powers (and thus the curse seal itself) come from being able to draw in nature chakra constantly. Despite 1) it's been established that complete motionlessness is necessary to draw in nature chakra. 2) This doesn't explain how Juugo mutates his body into whatever he wants.
Chakra being retconed as a magical power passed on from eating the fruit of the Shinju tree, when the idea that chakra was people's life energy was one of the most basic premises of the series. Not to mention the fact that people are dying from chakra drainage RIGHT THERE IN THE SAME CHAPTER! That this would require every ninja to be descended from the sage also makes no sense, because then why are only the Senju and Uchiha special? (As if we didn't know the answer to that one.)
Even worse when you consider that Nature Chakra exists. Not just people, every living thing has Chakra. Are the plants and animals descended from the Sage as well?
Naruto is using the 'Talk-no-jutsu' on Obito Uchiha now. Kishimoto just can't let any Uchiha go unredeemed, can he?
Naruto saying that Obito can just come back to Konoha and be punished for his crimes is a massive Wallbanger as well. Does he just like to forget that people are killed for far less than what Obito's done? Technically, Sasuke should have faced the death penalty! What the hell does he think would happen when they got back to Konoha? Obito is stripped of rank and allowed to walk free? JFC.
An addition to the above; why does Kishimoto hate the concept of absolute evil? The 10 tails- originally a foul demon far more evil than the others. Nope, just a tool of nature manipulated by two assholes. Obito- someone who wants to destroy/erase the world as they know it. Naruto is trying to get him to come back to the Leaf.
The fact alone that they're trying to forgive him for all he's done is idiotic. A guy who's made the lives of not only our "Hero" (given how pathetic Naruto's been as of late) a living hell but as many others and they're going to forgive him all because he's still crying over Rin?
More of a thing about all Shonen, yet Naruto is particularly anvilicious about it. All of this is because someone is trying to take an easy way- a shortcut. For all the easy ways out that Kishimoto gave Sasuke, why does he have to make Naruto be a story basically telling the audience 'Do not take the easy way out'?
Finally! Obito is going to be kil- Oh wait, no, Minato has to stop Kakashi from dealing the finishing blow.
And we get to hear about why the genocidal, kidnapping, murderous, world war-starting, global domination planner is to be pitied and not executed like the criminal he is. Because his crush died and made him all sad, so everything is bad.
Yeah Minato, forgive the guy who killed your wife, Sarutobi's wife, tried to murder your less than a minute old son and a whole lot of other stuff all because he's still throwing a temper tantrum. Is by being a Dumbass how they select Kages? I can see where Naruto inherited his stupidity! Haku saw his mother murdered in front of his eyes by his father; Kakashi lost his father, his team and was literally forced to kill one of them; Kimimaro saw his clan destroyed and was stricken with a fatal illness. And yet they and others who had worse lives than him didn't decide to destroy the world.
While the idea that nobody is purely evil, everybody is capable of redemption, and things will work out if you just keep trying are all fine and dandy messages, there is a point where the narrative is too idealistic, because something called the Moral Event Horizon, which people generally feel Orochimaru and Obito both crossed years ago, and many feel Sasuke has as well. There is a point where a villain's atrocities are too horrible for them to be worthy of sympathy or redemption in the audience's eyes, and collectively, attempting to kill a minutes-old infant, performing horrible and often fatal experiments on children and infants for your own selfish goals, murdering dozens of people, betraying everybody who has ever even thought to care about you, using every single living person on the planet as a pawn for your own selfish goals, attempting to wipe out the human race because you're too much of a crybaby to get over the death of somebody you care about, among other things, severely limit the sympathy the audience is capable of feeling for these characters.
Ok, so Obito was just going to sacrifice himself to do something right- only for it to be yanked away. I know it's better that Madara is still a villain and gets ahead, but it kinda yanked away any sort of heartwarming tension to see just who Obito was about to bring back to life.
Obito pulls a Heel-Face Turn; basically, Madara admitted that he was just using him, and it attempts to portray Obito as an Unwitting Pawn, even though he was a willing accomplice in Madara's plans and at no point did Madara ever attempt to hide that Obito was just a tool for his own ends.
Everything that's been done to Obito's character since The Reveal in chapter 599. At the time of his introduction, Obito was the only Uchiha to be portrayed in a likeable fashion, and his "death" was one of the series' Tear Jerker moments, partly because of how it explained a lot of present day Kakashi's angst. Hundreds of chapters later, he of all characters is revealed to be the series' Big Bad, who committed so many senseless, cruel acts of Disproportionate Retribution - and incidentally, many of said acts only took on such a meaning after his Freudian Excuse was revealed. As mentioned above on the page, said excuse was incredibly poorly-done, as if to try making him not only sympathetic, but also capable of redemption. Now he's being portrayed as capable of making a Heel-Face Turn, even after the hell he put everyone through, and at a point where feeling anything positive about Obito's character is incredibly difficult to do.
Another thing-for just going through numerous battles all without so much as a pause, all the characters seem to be missing something rather important, like, oh, say ANY SIGN OF PHYSICAL EXERTION! And yes, some of them have scratches here and there, but that has yet to slow them down in the slightest. This might as well be nothing more than a training montage for them. That they are not being shown in anything but the top of their health takes away from what few stakes are left, now that we know nobody (unless everything you said in part one was proven true in part two) can die and the villains (possessing the Sharingan) will always be forgiven by the biggest idiots on the planet just so long as they have a (no matter how poorly thought out) excuse to do what they did.
And now that he has one of his eyes, he instantly takes down the Bijuu in one fell swoop. It took Akatsuki a few hundred chapters and they still failed. Not only that but he also extracted the Bijuus in a few minutes despite it taking Akatsuki three days to seal one with 10 members.
Kishimoto actually said he doesn't know how to have Madara be defeated at this point and acknowledged he made him too overpowered. Not even the author can save them now.
The problem goes back to Kishimoto's desire to prove that killing Madara won't solve anything: Kishi's whole theme caused this to happen.
Everyone is mentioning how they're almost entirely out of chakra while they still have a Kyuubi cloak up. How are people out of chakra when they have a cloak giving them literally more chakra than they have ever had before?
Top that by the fact that Tsunade and Sakura both have fully-stored Yin seals, and Chouji has been fattened back up by the chakra.
Naruto's death being somehow fixable by putting the other half of the kyuubi inside of him. Does anyone care to explain how this works, or why it would work? No, it just does. Especially when it was implied that it wouldn't have saved Kushina.
Chapter 663: We see that the Asspull has Karin apparently sharing Kushina's ability to wield chakra chains. An ability she's not only never used before even when it'd be remotely useful (like in the fights against Killer Bee or Danzo).
Speaking of Killer Bee, who simply disappeared after having Gyuki extracted. No fanfare, no nothing! Just a Zetsu talking about Bowel movements.
Anko has a Curse Seal but unlike Sasuke, she doesn't have a counter-seal over it. Why? Given that Sasuke's counter-seal was based on his willpower and desire to not use it (and isn't that a wonderful idea; give the guy who lusts after power to kill his brother something that requires him to not want access to more power), Anko would have an insanely strong seal given how much she hates Orochimaru.
Speaking of her, is Anko still alive? They haven't said a word about her in two years. Hey Kishimoto, what happened to Anko? And Yamato? You know you haven't said anything about them in years since what happened to them. Are they alive or are they dead since you forgot about them existing?
Word of God states that there's "more than meets the eye" to Yamato's character, and that the nature of such will be revealed this arc. So...after keeping the character Out of Focus for years, Kishi picks now of all times to make him relevant again?
Anko was last seen being used to resurrect Orochimaru using her cursed seal and Juugo picked her up. After that, she'd vanished the next time we saw them. So either they dropped her off somewhere off-screen, or one of them ate her.
We finally have a chance to save Naruto- Oh no! Guess what?! Black Zetsu steals Yin-Kurama from Minato before he could give it to Naruto. On top of that, Kishimoto just put the biggest foreshadow in hopes it won't be an asspull!
Also the fact that Bijuu can be transferred to others with ease just by touching the recipient.
The fact Minato activates the Toad Sage Mode with NO foreshadowed training! At least Kabuto had alluded that he and orochimaru sought out the snake sage, and Jiraiya and Naruto were SHOWN to have trained in the manga and anime, even if only in flashback. But no, Minato just pulled it out of his ash!
And then Madara just rolls his eyes and pwns him, Gaara and Kakashi in one motion.
Explained in the next chapter. Even then, it's just a recon so that someone there has Nature Chakra while Naruto is suffering a Disney Death.
Minato trying to be a cool dad is essentially given the finger after Obito successfully transfers Kurama into Naruto .
Chapter 668: A flashback claims Gai is completely incapable of using ninjutsu or genjutsu like Lee. Except Gai's been shown to use the summoning jutsu
Divisive opinions about him aside,Obito was the Big Bad of this series. He caused Kurama's attack on Konoha, the Uchiha Massacre, was the true leader of Akatsuki, recreated the Juubi, and numerous other attrocities in the series. Yet despite his actions and his parallels with Naruto, he isn't the final villain. In reality, he's given a rushed climax to his fight and pushed aside so Madara can swoop in and Ass Pull his way into god hood.
One serious problem the series faces is the fact that one of the main messages seems to be that simply killing the villain won't instantly solve all of the problems they cause. This is true, but it would certainly help, especially with somebody like Madara, who clearly has no interest in being saved and has done nothing with the opportunities and mercy he's been handed besides become even more evil and powerful. In fact, one could argue that Hashirama's entire philosophy of never killing Madara is responsible for the problems the characters are facing now, as if he'd simply allowed Tobirama to kill Madara when he had the chance, the Naruto universe really would be a better place. It, and the recurring theme of showing mercy to obviously unrepentant villains just because they were your friend once, create an awfully selfish message that ends up looking like "Your friend's life is more important than the greater good, even if it's your friend who is directly threatening it."
A lot of these problems that the series has would've been solved if they had just grown up and quit wangsting about what happened beforehand and taken Old Yeller behind the shed and put a bullet between his eyes when they had the chance. Such as Sarutobi should've executed Orochimaru when he discovered his experiments. But nope, so long as you have a flimsy excuse you are free to do whatever you want no matter how many people hurt and die because of you. Great lesson there.
Worse, the only two people in the series who disagree are Tobirama and Sarutobi. The former is portrayed as a Jerkass and the latter only realizes his mercy was a mistake years after the fact and dies barely inconveniencing the man he let live.
Just like Aizen before him, Madara, after a few chapters showing off Evil Is Cool, took it too far for most fans' standards, starting by crushing the Five Kages together, and pulling off too many powers and breaking some of the rules established beforehand. Some of the most notable traits are how turned suddenly stronger than both Hashirama and Tobirama, easily absorbing Sage Chackra, having so much chackra to easily defeat and restain all the Tailed Beasts in seconds, easily defeating any character he comes across, fight properly without his eyes, but also regenerate and absorb chakra/ninjutsu, using Rinnegan and Sharingan techniques despite not having eyes, becoming the Ten-Tailed beast host without having gone through an Almighty Idiot phase and overall reducing all this plot which had been done a few chapters ago by Obito. The fact that Kishimoto praised him as an Invincible Villain and revealed he was so powerful he went through Writer's Block didn't help.
It gets to the point where Kishimoto had to have the Rikudou Sennin, basically the most powerful character in Naruto, suddenly come to Naruto and Sasuke as a ghost to give them a power-up so they can fight Madara. While revealing that Naruto is the reincarnation of his younger son and Sasuke the reincarnation of elder like Hashirama and Madara before them.
The fact that at this point the final battle against Madara is dragging on for more chapters than Frieza and Aizen battles (which themselves are classical examples of dragged-out fights with villains who pulled One-Winged Angel powerups out of their asses repeatedly) combined is a Wall Banger by itself.
...So now Madara can switch places with his shadow, for some reason...I don't know what is going on anymore, i just know it doesn't make any sense...
Kishi also shows us that expert medical knowledge of his by having Madara ripping Kakashi's Sharingan out and jamming it into his eye socket. I know this one already has an entry for a similar offense, but it still must not go unnoticed.
Worse than that is what happens later. It turns out Sakura is taking her sweet time with the fairly simple task of destroying Obito's Rinnegan. There's no fighting involved, her only task is to just pierce it with a kunai and Obito is standing there in front of Sakura begging for her to do it before Black Zetsu takes control back. She does nothing and Madara inevitably appears just in time to make a visit. Add on the factors that both, she's a medical ninja so blood and injury shouldn't faze her, and this is only his eye not his life so there's barely any moral ambiguity here.
Even worse was Obito stated that he couldn't use Kamui as the ten-tailed, lo and behold Madara does it within seconds after shoving the eye into his empty socket.
Naruto is apparently Jesus now, as his magic medic powers completely heals Kakashi's eye. As in gives him a new eye. I didn't think there was a way to make Sakura even more irrelevant after the whole 'gaze at my back thing' but...Kishi found a way.
From the same chapter, we find out the Madara was the mastermind behind Rin becoming the Jinchuuriki of the Sanbi, not Mist. And he did it to get Obito to fall to the darkside. It just feels like a huge Ass Pull, especially seeing how this affects many of Obito's crimes as the Big Bad, such as his role in the Hidden Mist blood purges, wherein he basically made kids kill each other to get back at what only a few adults did. And even with all this in mind, we're still supposed to feel sympathy for him, and we're still expected to not be outraged by his sudden Heel-Face Turn.
The entire thing with Madara Uchiha is becoming truly insane. With this new chapter, Madara has officially surpassed Sosuke Aizen as a Villain Sue, even though Aizen is one of the most notorious characters of that type. Because when Aizen claims to have been behind the entire plot, it turns out to be bullshit and he's taking credit for the results of a plan of his that went wrong. With Madara, he really did plan everything almost exactly as it happened, and he really was behind pretty much everything that's ever happened in Naruto. And what's worse? The narrative is still leaving the door open for this character to be redeemed.
In 676, Sakura decides (again) that she's done standing behind Naruto and Sasuke, so she activates her super mode and charges in an attempt to distract Madara. Unsurpisingly she fails. It's times like this when you realize that the only purpose for Sakura's existence is to sit on the sidelines and stare in amazement at how awesome Naruto and Sasuke are.
And then for some reason she's shocked and saddened that Sasuke doesn't even look her way after it happened. Has Sasuke done anything to prove he's changed from being the sociopath willing to throw away anyone not useful to him or if helping them would inconvenience him? He's betrayed pretty much everyone he's ever teamed up with except the resurrected Hokages, which is only because he hasn't been given the chance to do so.
Not to mention it makes Kakashi's statement in the previous chapter on how she grew out of her crush on Sasuke an Informed Attribute. One chapter after that she is disappointed Sasuke, and only Sasuke specifically, didn't care at all for her change on Madara.
Sakura's reaction becomes worse when you consider the situation they are in. Just moments ago, she acknowledged herself that Madara is too damn powerful with a single Rinnegan, and it would become worse if he gets the second one (which he does). Then the two characters who **might** have some chance against him have to risk their lives to rescue her. At this point, Madara is barely a couple of moves away from winning the World War and dragging everyone into his endless dream. Yet the thing bothering Sakura the most is that Sasuke doesn't care about her. Tsunade-sama would be pleased to know indeed.
Finally, Madara has four, count them, FOUR Shadows. I remember when Kishi first said something to the equivalence of "I have made Madara too powerful". He has only gotten more powerful since then. It's like every chapter Madara is in in, he has to find a way to make himself even more invincible.
In 677, it turns out that Killer B survived the extraction by pulling the same trick he pulled on Taka, only this time he was the tentacle! This not only further cheapens death in this series, but it also breaks the rules established regarding Tailed Beast extraction resulting in death, unless you have Senju/Uzumaki blood, and that only staves off death for a while (unless your name is Naruto).
In Chapter 678, we actually get an explanation for how Madara was able to break so much established canon! It turns out that Madara never had the power to instantly seal the Bijuu, use the Sharingan without eyes, control the Jyuubi without struggle, just generally be stronger than everyone else for no reason etc, it was all actually Kaguya's will working through him. Hooray! The constant barrage of nonsensical Madara superiority has finally been justified! By something that's even more nonsensical. And now the entire story was caused by a Big Bad who was introduced roughly ten chapters ago. As a result, Madara goes from one of the biggest Villain Sues in anime history to an Anti-Climax Boss in four pages. Not to mention the timing of all this, which was basically after Madara pretty much succeeded with the Mugen Tsukuyomi before taking it all away. Because of this she mainly comes off as a Fake Ultimate Villain.
Kaguya's revelation that she was behind everything or rather her will allowed this to happened and that Zetsu was her will despite being created by Madara himself.
Sasuke tells Sakura and Kakashi they're useless and he's taking control in the most assholish way possible... And they agree with him! When Naruto's the one calling out Sasuke's action. Not to mention that Sasuke's one of the manga's worst tacticians, with all of his victories requiring a combination of his Plot Armor, his opponents to Take A Level In Dumbass, and outright AssPulls. And whenever he loses one of them, he ends up brutally beaten into the ground. And Kakashi, while not on God Tier like our 'main characters', is a MUCH better tactician than Sasuke could hope to be.
Sasuke's idea of strategy is to throw his teammates under a bus, abandon them whenever he sees fit, and kill them if they are in the line of his attack.
And it's not like Kakashi has a history of contributing to and even winning fights he should have no business participating in with pureskillandtactics or anything... Oh Wait, that's more or less what he's been doing for the entire Part II of the series.
That same chapter once again tries to paint Madara as a Well-Intentioned Extremist, and even he is shown to consider himself such. So, after all the trouble he put the cast through, which to name but a few things from the current arc, includes nearly killing Naruto and Sasuke, orchestrating Rin's death to get Obito under his control AND cutting off Minato's other arm after he'd already lost one to Obito, Kishimoto STILL considers it possible for Madara to be viewed in such a way?
In chapter 679, we get to see what Sasuke's tactical brilliance comes up with: run at the Villain Sue currently being attacked by a BIGGER Villain Sue and try to kill them with a direct attack. It ends as well as you expect. And Kakashi proves he's the better tactician by realizing that such a plan is stupid and stopping Sakura from doing it as well.
How the Rinnegan was treated is a good example. It was said at several points to be the most powerful of the three eye techniques, yet it is constantly overshadowed by the Sharingan. The Rinnegan apparently allows the user to use any technique of the five elements, yet as far as this troper can recall, that's never shown off anywhere. That, and the Sharingan constantly has new abilities coming out of nowhere while the Rinnegan is almost like a cosmetic to have that somehow powers up people like Obito and the resurrected Jinchūriki, despite them never really using any of its powers.
Chapter 681 has a rather large one: none of the Uchihas were ever evil - they were just manipulated by the Black Zetsu, who until recently was stated to be created by Madara around the time of Kakashi's flashback, but is now hundreds if not thousands of years old. This comes across as Kishimoto trying to sweep the Uchiha's history of generally being self-centered and arrogant under the rug (even the spectacularlycrazy cases), and it doesn't exactly work to say the least.
The same chapter reveals how Madara survived the fight with the First Hokage - he bit off a piece of the Hokage's arm, and somehow, that activated Izanagi - yet another case of the established rules of the universe being completely ignored for Madara's benefit.
And the eye he sacrificed to use Izanagi somehow turned into an even better one ie Rinnegan. There are two types of rules in the series, what ninjas can do & what ninjas except Madara can't do.
These last few chapters have not only turned a once-epic manga into a convoluted mess, they've also once again made the Uchiha characters into Karma Houdinis. Where the series previously had the recurring theme that no one is born evil, and they become that way as a result of the life they're born into - which is actually a fairly interesting one - it now seems to go out of its way to portray the villains as Unwitting Pawns. So, even after all the despicable acts they did, usually over petty, selfish reasons, Kishimoto STILL considers humanization possible?
That very message doesn't really work very well in Naruto to begin with. One of the main themes is that nobody is born evil, but the Uchihas' "loving more than anyone makes us turn evil for some reason" trait that is naturally within them was written as a direct contradiction to that. Apparently seeing this, we then got a very nonsensical explanation that still doesn't really explain their "love" trait in any way.
Kaguya has Naruto and Sasuke in a death grip, only for Naruto to break it without any effort. And Kaguya just sorts of lets it happen. instead of, you know, killing them.
The sad thing is that this is pretty much the first time since this entire debacle started with Naruto/Bee vs. Tobi and his Jinchuuriki paths that Naruto managed to rescue himself after being endangered instead of needing to be rescued by someone else.
As a final note, not that anyone should really be surprised, but Sakura and Kakashi are off doing nothing of value, like they have been since this fight started. If Kishi brought them back so Team 7 could be one again would it not be better if they actually did something other then cheerlead and play damsel as they have been for the past five or so chapters? they have contributed almost nothing to the entire fight, save making Sasuke look like and even bigger prick, and letting Sakura feed the Shippers while coming off as even more self-centered and obsessed. The only thing of value given is from Kakashi holding back Sakura from following Naruto and Sasuke to her certain doom, and perhaps saving them from all falling into a pit of lava, but the two important ones learn to fly immediately afterwards, so that was rendered moot.
The Art Evolution of Naruto's Kyuubi cloak. it started out all well and good, as a menacing orange outline that literally oozed and bubbled malice, and managed to make a plucky twelve year old kid look intimidating. but after Naruto's training with Killer Bee, it was thrown out the window for a completely unfrightening, presence-less void that was a yellow outline of Naruto. And while it has slightly improved with a trenchcoat (which comes from...literally nowhere. Seriously, what aside from Ruleof Cool makes it exist?) the design still looks completely out of place, more at home in a Dragon Ball knock off then Naruto. Also for no particular reason, he has no foxlike feature such as the tails and looks like the Sage of six paths.
Design aside, perhaps the most notable reason it's so jarringly out of place is that characters charging so much chakra that they have a dbz esque battle aura is fairly common for the series, but the yellow cloak is opaque. So rather than the original which looked like Naruto with an aura of red kyuubi chakra, the new one is Naruto himself looking like a living glowstick. For the DBZ analogy, imagine if when going super sayian, Goku's whole body turned yellow rather than just his hair, he'd suddenly look just as jarringly out of place compared to every other character in the series.
Honestly, the fact that Sasuke is being made an important part of the final battle is a wallbanger. Because it makes the entire "Naruto is the Child of Prophecy" angle that was repeatedly shoved down our throat completely pointless. Because it said that "the student of Jiraiya" would either save or destroy the world. Not 'the student of Jiraiya and that prick over there' would save or destroy the world.
Naruto uses the Sexy Reverse Harem Jutsu on Kaguya... and it actually works, distracting her long enough for Naruto to successfully land a punch on her. Funny, but it's gonna be difficult to take Kaguya seriously after that.
And now Naruto is bringing Obito back to life. Yes, you read that correctly, he brings Obito back to life. The man who almost killed Naruto within seconds after his birth, is directly responsible for the death of his parents, started a war, made kids kill each other to get back at what only a few people did, and so many other senseless, cruel things, all because he lost his childhood crush. Kabuto's Freudian Excuse made him at least mildly sympathetic, but Obito's doesn't elicit much, if any. The only thing worse than this, would be if Obito were to make a Heroic Sacrifice, he fully intends to do.
Kaguya's plot based behavior to make the above even possible. She decides to separate Naruto and Sasuke and take them out one at a time. She then grabs Sasuke to warp him into another dimension with her... then warps again to return herself to the original world. There's no reason why someone would add on a trip like that except for 'lol plot'. The normal, expected flow of events would be she warps herself and Sasuke to another dimension, succeeding in splitting them up, finishing off Sasuke, then returning to the original world to get Naruto. The 'lol plot' flow however is to warp herself and Sasuke to another dimension, then return to the original without touching Sasuke, then fight Naruto on the same side as Obito so the above sync can happen at all. We're watching the villain go out of her way to take the path of most resistance for no other reason than there's no way the protagonists could succeed if she behaved naturally.
Later it is noted That not only is the technique Chakra intensive even for a Physical God, But as a added bonus, she teleports to a dimension that connects to all of her other dimensions to escape a Zerg Rush from Naruto, allowing him access to that dimension.
Much like Naruto bringing Obito back to life, Hashirama is trying to do the same to Madara, ie the guy who just caused the apocalypse by revealing the power to negate any ability to dismiss the Edo Tensei and thus become unkillable.
It was Tobirama, because he exists solely to make bad decisions so Hashirama can be the perfect one. Kind of like how Black Zetsu and their 'mental disorder from loving too much' excuse exist so Kishimoto's beloved Uchiha can get off scot-free for every bad thing they did.
Chapter 686: In a dimension where the gravity is so strong that Naruto, Sasuke, and even Kaguya are pinned to the ground from it, Obito and Kakashi not only manage to stand up, but are able to move fast enough to get in front of attacks fired by Kaguya at our heroes. The only explanation given: the ghost/memory/whatever of Rin grabbing their hands and giving them a bit of a boost.
The fact that Kaguya, by most definitions a Physical God at this point, apparently has no way to exempt herself from her own effect is bad enough, but in the same chapter, Kaguya misses her shots at Naruto and Sasuke, apparently forgetting that the high gravity would also affect her projectiles.
Also Obito negating Kakashi's Heroic Sacrifice not because he wanted to save his former friend. It was because Obito viewed Kakashi as an obstacle getting in between him and Rin.
Chapter 687: Naruto says Obito an inspiration to him. Yes Naruto, the Man who single handedly nearly killed you half a dozen times (once when you were no more then a few minutes old), is directly the cause of thousands of deaths, the death of both your parents, and countless other crimes, is worthy of your respect. Why don't you start praising Orochimaru for his stubbornness while you're at it?
Even worse, Obito gets everything he ever wanted in death! He dies a complete and total Karma Houdini!
Naruto claims the reason he respects Obito is because he tried to become Hokage. When exactly was that? Obito wanted to be Hokage when he was a kid, which isn't the same thing as trying to be. In truth, Obito totally abandoned that ambition the second he faced personal tragedy and instead spent the rest of his life trying to kill everybody.
Even more insulting, the chapter ends with an apparent reunion between Obito and Rin in the afterlife and Rin says she's happy with him because he "tried his hardest". Again, the only thing Obito has ever actually tried to do was end the world over her death.
One insulting thing to consider with Obito receiving an Alas, Poor Villain is that in doing so, his death was treated as sadder than some of the people he'd murdered in cold blood. Take Konan for example, who died trying to end his crimes and took her last breath believing that Naruto would do what she couldn't. All it takes for Obito to be accepted as a good guy is to admit that trying to end the world is a shitty thing to do and thus the same guy that killed so many people essentially gets a hero's sendoff, with Naruto practically drooling on him.
Chapter 688: The Sharingan somehow becomes even more ridiculously powerful, as Obito uses it to contact Kakashi from beyond the grave, and just gives him a pair of fully matured Sharingan eyes. This makes absolutely no sense, as the Sharingan is a bloodline, and should not be transferable by something like whatever this is.
Kaguya is in absolute hell power-wise. She's basically a Physical God who Naruto and Sasuke are supposed to have next to no chance against, if that, but they still toss her around as if she were any other opponent, including tearing one of her arms off, making it really difficult to take her seriously as an enemy. It doesn't help that she's essentially taking orders from Black Zetsu the entire time.
The situation with Kaguya's power is actually worse than this. Naruto and Sasuke were fighting fairly evenly with Madara after being powered up and still having quite a bit of trouble. They're thrashing Kaguya, despite the fact that she is supposed to be many times stronger than Madara. Not to mention Kaguya has allegedly been growing stronger the entire fight, but all the audience sees is Naruto and Sasuke having an easier time the longer the fight goes on.
I'm no expert on reincarnation, but...if Madara and Hashirama are reincarnations of Asura and Indra, and Naruto and Sasuke also are...How do Madara and Hashirama come back from the dead? Isn't the idea of reincarnation that the soul passes on to a new life, thus leaving the realm of the dead? And does the soul not have to be in an accessible location for Edo Tensei to work (I.E. not in the God of Death's stomach), something I imagine in someone else's body would count as, or at least present a problem? And even if there was some sort of soul time share program regarding reincarnations built in to the Edo Tensei, one would think that it would have come up at some point.
Chapter 690 appears to be the end for Kaguya. So in the span of roughly 20 chapters, Kaguya is first mentioned, summoned as the Physical GodBigger Bad, and gets resealed, all without really contributing anything to the story besides killing Obito. It'd be nice to say We Hardly Knew Ye, but we didn't really know her at all. Her entire existence and the fight against her seemed really pointless and anticlimactic.
Chapter 690 also has Naruto, by all means, throwing Black Zetsu to the moon to punish him for everything he's done. This, on its face, is not so bad. He's the Man Behind the Man for every bad thing that's happened in the Naruto universe aside from Kaguya's initial existence, however from a writing standpoint, Black Zetsu is nothing but a Hate Sink. In essence, he and Kaguya were the only ones who were ever actually evil and he exists solely to excuse or ignore the crimes of pretty much everyone who has ever lived since he began his plans, but primarily the Uchihas and especially Obito. Keep in mind that, while the Uchihas were tricked into their turn toward evil (somehow), they and many others still actively chose to do the things they did and were never forced into any of it.
Chapter 691 expects the death of Madara to be a tearjerker. Expecting us to be sad at Obito's death was severely stretching it as it is, but Madara? And you can't blame Black Zetsu, because he only went for Madara after the guy threw a temper tantrum and fought Hashirama due to not being voted Hokage.
Chapter 692: Sasuke goes off the deep end, again. He takes control of the Tailed Beasts with the Rinnegan out of nowhere, suddenly reveals he has the ability to create gravity wells when he pretty much got jobbed the entire fight with Kaguya (we're thus supposed to believe that Sasuke somehow mastered all these powers during said jobbing and was holding back the whole time), and decides he'd rather kill the five kage in the Infinite Tsukuyomi for the sake of revolution. Why, you may ask? To ensure there was a Naruto and Sasuke fight.
Using the Chibaku Tensei could be justified by his having just learned it by observing the jutsu with his sharingan, which, while explicable in context, is still part of a much larger source of wallbangers. Just how many asspulls could have been avoided without something so obviously broken as the ability to instantly copy any power you see?
Also, Infinite Tsukiyomi can apparently be dispelled by Naruto and Sasuke working together, without even needing the power of the tailed beasts to do it. Even Kurama lampshades how anti-climatic it is. So now with Sasuke being evil, Naruto can't kill him, so he's going to have to Talk no Jutsu Sasuke into not being such a prick.
This plot twist pretty much sums up how Naruto has handled the "make friends with everyone" Aesop: the story enforces it so hard that it ends up breaking it in the process. We can only guess if the philosophy is supposed to be "you have to break the Aesop a dozen times before it finally comes true", but that's what's happened. Just like with Madara, redemption will be offered to a character who has made it abundantly clear he doesn't want to be redeemed, and again like Madara, has done nothing with his mercy and second chances than become more evil and powerful. Again, the attempt to portray the Uchihas in any light than Always Chaotic Evil fails because now Naruto has to literally force Sasuke to stop being evil, the way it has been since Part 1, the only difference now being that he has justification beyond "Sasuke is my friend" for giving him his endless supply of undeserved mercy.
So not even five minutes after claiming all the Uchiha including ObitoAND Madara were pawns of Kaguya who tricked and manipulated the whole clan into what they did, the last of said clan goes nuts again and threatens to kill the Bijuu and the defenseless Kages? Are we seriously supposed to think Sasuke is even capable of learning his lesson after this display of total idiocy?
When Kakashi asks Sasuke why he wants to kill the Kages, he says that the 5-Kage system is broken and he'll become the new leader of the entire world by killing all of the current authority. He's now officially become ChaoticStupid Evil. First of all, what makes Sasuke think that anyone would be alright with him doing that? All of the Kages have friends and family and nobody would willingly work under someone who would kill their leader after everything they've been through throughout the course of the war. Especially when you keep in mind that a Kage isn't necessarily a dictator or tyrant, they're "the most Acknowledged", the people who in addition to being one of the most powerful, are often one of the most well liked ninja of their respective villages. All killing the Kages would do is turn the entire world against Sasuke even more than it already was. Secondly, how does that make him any better than Madara? At this rate, you could easily say he opposed Madara not because what he was doing was reprehensible or even merely impractical, but because Sasuke wanted to be worshiped himself and Madara would be getting in the way if he'd won out.
The Yota saga was rather ridiculous but one point stand out. Somehow a bunch of 10 year olds note Naruto, Sakura, Shikamaru, Ino, Chouji, and Kiba managed to not only break into the Anbu headquarters but managed to escape said facility.
Itachi went all perfect on us again in the Mecha Naruto special, secretly planting a new program in the robot to make it side with Naruto.
Don't you mean "Itachi went all Itachi on us again"?