DVD Review: Naruto Shippuden Series 9 Box Set
Naruto Shippuden is considered one of the best anime series of all-time!
Lord Orochimaru is getting close to his goal of controlling the three-tailed beast, but the Leaf Ninja stand in his way. Orochimaru’s right hand woman, Guren has to keep her growing hatred for Kabuto in check while she has to prevent Naruto from getting his hands on Yukimaru. If Naruto wants to get him from her clutches, he will have a hard time as Guren’s crystal style ninjustu is floorless as well as dangerous.
Naruto’s characters have several distinct types; the good guys are colourful and energetic, sporting individual outfits. It is easy to tell the difference between these and the bad guys as Orochimaru and his cohorts have an evil look to them, and an ugliness too. They wear clothes that give them away as the enemy with their tops and baggy pants, and the length of rope they wear around their waists. Orochimaru, Sasuke and Guren wear these to good effect to show their allegiance. Kabuto, isn’t dressed the same as he has a tendency to play both sides, it’s his eyes behind those rounded glasses that make him seem sinister.
One thing that seems to be unique to anime is that emotions, regardless of whether the character is good or bad come out in the episodes, proving they are not completely good or entirely evil. They have emotions, even Orochimaru, Sasuke and Guren. In fact Guren’s emotions show a great deal in this series, and they can turn her against the ones she looks up to, causing her trouble with her lord and Kabuto. She listens to what Naruto tells her about Yukimaru, and as most viewers will be aware, Naruto has a hypnotic effect on anyone he talks to (even Sasuke to a certain extent, though his will to destroy his brother is stronger.) Naruto, who is only interested, even obsessed with bringing Sasuke back from Orochimaru shifts his focus from him to Yukimaru, as saving him is the only thing on his mind.
In the middle of every long running anime series, there is a succession of filler arcs that give the animators a chance to work on the real arc later, and this is starting to leave the filler arc and go back to Sasuke’s story and the growing threat of the Akatsuki.
In Naruto several characters are getting ready for conflict. Kakashi and Captain Yamato need to make sure Naruto doesn’t go off on his own as he is prone to it, while Guren’s loyalty to her lord and Kabuto is fading as she has developed a close bond with Yukimaru, and doesn’t want them pumping him with drugs so he can control the beast. She thinks he might die from using too much of his power, and her attitude towards him is what a mother would feel for her son.
Guren is a strong female character who at first acted cold and ruthless, but changed her ways when she thought Orochimaru and Kabuto might do Yukimaru harm. Yukimaru in turn is the total opposite of Orochimaru and his henchmen. He is nice, kind and, from a female perspective, ‘cute’.
The story tells of how Guren found him, but his recollection is vague about what happened. It is interesting then that Guren can fill him in on the bits he missed out. The problem is if she does, she risks losing him as her friend, or potential adopted son.
Along with Bleach, Naruto Shippuden is considered one of the best anime series of all-time. It has the heroes, the villains (even if they are comical like Orochimaru and Kabuto) and all the problems associated with warring clans as in similar anime series, Basilisk. Naruto isn’t always serious; it has humour and slapstick moments usually where Naruto acts like a fool in front of Sakura. This is entertaining, and also shows how she feels about him now that Sasuke, the one she originally loved had left the Hidden Leaf Village. The anime is fun though it can be long and drawn out at times when it need not be, but always remarkable.
Label: Manga Entertainment
Release date: 4th June 2012
Running time: 325 mins
Director: Hayato Date
Language: Japanese/English (Dubbed)
Sandie has a keen interest in Anime, Manga and all things Japanese. Her interests other than reviewing are Japanese Language, dress and culture, liking Harajuku Girls, Gothic Lolita, folding some neat Origami, drawing her own Manga characters, writing her own Manga stories and everything in between.