Naruto Shippuden Season 8

The Two Saviors

The eight season of Naruto Shippuden (Part II of the manga by Kishimoto Masashi) began airing from March 25 until August 26, 2010. Konohagakure learns of the Sage’s demise. The leaf village will have to fortify themselves against their enemy, just as Naruto surpasses his master to avenge him. Naruto takes on one of Akatsuki‘s most powerful, Pain. The two students of a master finally meet. Naruto will learn of his father, the love Hinata bears for him and what real pain is. After the clash of the titans, as Tsunade lies in a coma and Konohagakure rebuilds, Danzou uses the opportunity to appoint himself as the next Hokage of the village. War will reign under him.

The season opening and ending themes:

1. Flow’s “Sign” (ep. 142-153)
2. Azu’s “For You” (ep.
142-153)
3. Motohiro Hata‘s “Toumei datta Sekai” (
透明だった世界 – Transparent World)
(ep. 154-176) DOWNLOAD
4. OreSkaBand’s “Jitensha” (自転車 – Bicycle) (ep. 154-166) DOWNLOAD
5.Supercell’s “Utakata Hanabi” (うたかた花火) (ep. 166-176)

NARUTO

NARUTO SHIPPUDEN

• SEASON 1 (Feb. 2007 – Oct. 2007)

• SEASON 2 (Nov. 2007 – April 2008)

• SEASON 3 (April. 2008 – Aug. 2008)

• SEASON 4 (Aug. 2008 – Dec. 2008)

• SEASON 5 (Dec. 2008 – June 2009)

• SEASON 6 (June 2009 – Dec. 2009)

• SEASON 7 (Jan. 2010 – March 2010)

EPISODES

MARCHAPRILMAYJUNEJULYAUGUST

MARCH 2010

March 25, 2010 | ep. 152 & 153: Somber News & Following the Master’s Shadow

Konohagakure, and most importantly, Tsunade and Naruto will hear of the death of a dear comrade and master. This will open the floodgates. Naruto will have to become much stronger; as how his godfather and master would have him better himself.

Sasuke brings Killer Bee’s body to Madara, as the remaining members drain Utakata. Madara questions Sasuke whether his front of destroying Konoha is a ruse. Sasuke tells him that his love for his brother is as strong as his hatred for the three village elders and Konohagakure. He will see to their demise, after tending to his and his teammates’ wounds.

Naruto reminisces on the day he met Itachi in the forest, while tracking Sasuke. (Sept. 10, 2009 ep. 126: Twilight)

Itachi traps Naruto in his genjutsu after Naruto attacks him. He insists he is there to “talk.” Itachi asks Naruto why would he want anything to do with a traitor like Sasuke. Naruto replies, “I am more of a brother to him than you could ever be.” He continues that he would do anything to bring Sasuke home to Konoha. Itachi, satisfied with the answer, leaves Naruto.

Naruto remembers conversing with Jiraiya about being wise to give up on Sasuke. Jiraiya states that Sasuke is a lost cause. Naruto then replies, if that is what it means to grow wiser, he will forever remain an idiot. This he tells to Itachi too. That he will save Konoha and Sasuke with every fiber of his being. Hearing this, Itachi ends up giving Naruto some of his powers, hoping that he will never have to use that against a deceived Sasuke in the future.

gamabunta

Gamabunta

Later, Naruto is told by Kakashi that Tsunade has summoned. As the two head towards her office, they see Gamabunta outside headquarters. As they arrive, Tsunade’s room is filled with large and small toads, Sakura and Sai. There, the oldest and smallest of the toads, Fukasaku speaks. As the sage and Jiraiya’s master, Fukasaku breaks the news of Jiraiya’s death to Naruto. He tells of how Jiraiya infiltrated Amegakure and found out who Pain/Nagato is with his powerful Rinnegan and six paths. Fukasaku continues that even at his death-bed, Jiraiya etched a code on his back to tell the secret of Pain to Konohagakure. However, Naruto doesn’t hear any of these information. All he hears is how Tsunade allowed Jiraiya to leave on such a perilous mission by himself.

“If Ero-Senin (pervy sage) was the fifth Hokage, he will never have allowed you (Tsunade obachan / granny Tsunade) to go on this death mission.” – Naruto to Tsunade upon learning of Jiraiya’s death

As he storms out, Fukasaku states that he can understand why Jiraiya loved this boy, the child prophesied, so much. The boy loved him as well.

Jiraiya

Tsunade doesn’t stop Naruto. She too feels the lost of someone dear. Someone who could not forgive himself for not bringing Orochimaru back to Konohagakure. Now, she is the someone who has to live with that guilt for permitting such a mission.

Before Fukasaku leaves with his entourage, he reveals that Jiraiya had more parting gifts for the village. Jiraiya had sealed one of Pain’s path inside one of the toad. Tsunade promptly calls for an autopsy of the body.

As Naruto walks the streets aimlessly, he thinks of the times that Jiraiya and him spent together training. As sleep does not claim him, he wanders off into the night, only to stop at a convenient store to pick up a popsicle. Iruka sensei finds a quietly weeping Naruto with a melting ice-cream in the park. He tells Naruto, that Jiraiya has and will always think the world of him. Naruto was Jiraiya’s prized student, and Naruto should never forget that.

Shikamaru came next, not to console but to revive a fellow friend (and more importantly, to decode Jiraiya’s message). Having no luck with Tsunade and Kakashi (who for a moment thought the code meant Tsunade’s breast size, but quickly dismissed it), Shikamaru turned to Naruto. After visiting a pregnant Kurenai sensei, Shikamaru tells Naruto that Asuma entrusted him with his child. Shikamaru himself is to be the unborn child’s teacher. Just like that, the younger generation becomes teachers to the future generation. Naruto too then has to grow up and be a pillar for the future ninjas of Konohagakure.

Time for Naruto to be the man who Jiraiya hoped for him to be. After wiping off the tears, Naruto begins his training.

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APRIL 2010

April 8, 2010 | ep. 154 & 155: Decryption & The First Challenge

The brightest of Konohagakure gather to decode Jiraiya’s message. The code is finally cracked, only with Naruto as the key and with the brains of Shikamaru and Shiho (who seems to take to Shikamaru. If Temari is not quick to act soon, Shikamaru may just be spoken for). The key to the code is Jiraiya’s Icha-Icha novels. Part of the message reads, “The real one is not here.” Yet, they still do not understand it, although Fukasaku should have easily deciphered that – meaning that none of the 6 Pains that were fighting him were the real Nagato. Autopsy of the one captured Pain path is carried out by Mizune.

Nara Shikamaru

Nara Shikamaru

Lord Fukasaku then convinces Naruto to learn senjutsu – Sage Jutsu, just as Jiraiya did. They travel to Mount Mokyubo, Land of the Toads, where Naruto learns to gather energy from nature and blend it with his own internal chakra. To train for that, Naruto risks turning into a toad himself, which is why Jiraiya, who never quite mastered it, always had remnants of toad-like features on him when he is in the Sage Mode. Of course, explaining the process to Naruto isn’t easy. Lucky for Naruto, Gamakichi is there to dumb it down for him.

Finally, Naruto sees and is able to gather Natural energy, but only with the help of the toad oils. He now has to train to do it without the oils. Lord Fukasaku then passes Jiraiya’s first novel to Naruto – Tales of a Gutsy Ninja (about his father, Namikaze Minato, the Fourth Hokage). Meanwhile, Naruto is forced to feast on insect grubs that Lord Fukasaku’s wife, Shima, has prepared for them after their hard day’s work. Naruto quietly and respectfully swallows every grimy, crunchy and very colorful insect.

Meanwhile, in Akatsuki lair, after draining six tails, they turn their attention on hachibi. Madara warns Pain (and Konan) that now is the time to move ahead and capture kyuubi before they leave Konohagakure with too much time to hatch a plan against them. As they drain hachibi, it turns out that Killer Bee is only part of an octopus leg. The real Killer Bee has escaped!

Is it my ears or are both the new opening and ending themes like kaka? What has a jitensha (bicycle) got to do with anything? And for that matter, who’s the chick in the ending theme?!

April 15, 2010. ep. 156: Surpassing the Master

Now comes training without the aid of the oils. The only reason for that is, the oils is not transportable outside of Mount Mokyubo, it evaporates immediately. Naruto is then taught to balance at the highest tip of a crest, whereby each drop into the ravine could mean death. As Naruto learns to adjust his equilibrium quietly and be one with nature, he also masters the skill of transforming into the Sage Mode. Later that night, while Lord Fukasaku is resting, Naruto quietly sneaks out of the room to practice a secret technique. Could it be that he’s using the forbidden Rasenshuriken? Or has he realized what Itachi has given him through his meditation, and has begun to use it? Option 1.

Naruto_Sage

Ninjas from Kumogakure (Cloud Village) are searching frantically for traces of Killer Bee, Lord Raikage’s brother. As one of the ninjas, Jay, closes in on Team Taka’s hideout, Karin immediately senses him. Not before Sasuke realizes his eyesight may be waning. Sasuke immediately heads out and dispatches the ninja and his messenger lizard.

Team Samui

Team Samui

Back in Kumogakure, Lord Raikage has no choice now but to summon Team Samui, former students of Killer Bee. Team Samui consists of leader Samui, a big busted woman, who is also the only calm and collected member of the team. The other members are Karui, a red-headed flat-chested woman who is constantly arguing with Omoi, the only male in the team, who even though is level-headed, tends to exaggerate situations. Their mission is to go to Konohagakure to respectfully inform Tsunade that Lord Raikage will be dealing directly with Sasuke Uchiha. They are to also gather information about Sasuke and the Akatsuki from Konoha.

April 26, 2010 | ep. 157: Konoha Attack

Pain and Konan reach Konohagakure and begin their infiltration and assault on the unsuspecting village. The deciphering, intel and autopsy units are all closing in on their work at hand, when the Akatsuki pair barge in. As Anbu and the rest of the ninjas gather information on the identity of the attacker(s), Shikamaru, Sakura, Choji, Ino and Neji will have to defend the village. Come on intel!!! The real one is NOT with the 6 Paths of Pain. The real Pain is protecting his debilitated body elsewhere.

When they finally realize who they are dealing with, Tsunade makes a decisive decision, and tells her ninja that she wants Naruto to be back in the village – as he would want – to defend and protect the village.

Meanwhile, Lord Fukasaku reminds Naruto that the Sage Mode is a very dangerous technique for two reason.

1. If the user is not careful, it will turn him permanently into an amphibian
2. When gathering Natural Energy, the user has to be still thus any attacks will leave him/her in danger

The solution to the first is to obviously stop the process immediately. The second, as Jiraiya did, is to merge with Lord Fukasaku. Naruto will have both Fukasaku and Shima sit on his shoulders, whereby when one is counter attacking or defending, the other is quietly and steadily gathering energy.

April 29, 2010 | ep. 158: The Power to Believe

After her orders are communicated, the elders of the village vehemently disagree with her (after Danzou convinces that Naruto should be kept away not as a protection for him by a last-minute trump card for the village) and want a retraction. She tells them, just as the elder Chiyo of the Sand Village and Jiraiya have believed in the strength and power of Naruto, so will they. This boy has gone through so much adversities that it is time for him to live up to his potential.

Meanwhile, as they argue it out, the new generation of ninjas are protecting their home, just as Tsunade believes they would. The village has a new protector and Tsunade entrusts them with the duty.

The elders finally agree for Naruto to be back. After Tsunade sends out her orders, the frog messenger is told to quickly get Naruto and relay the message of Shizune’s findings of the chakra rods. As they leave, the frog is killed, even before he moves. Danzou has ensured that Naruto remains.

Everyone has their mission now. Even Tsunade has left her office and has called upon Katsuyu to disperse the Hokage’s chakra among the ninjas to aid them in their protection and healing of the village. She will protect the village, even if it means her life.

Iruka sensei saves another comrade from one of Pain’s Deva Path (Tendou aka Yahiko) and is about to meet his demise when Kakashi arrives. His sealing eye-patch has been removed as he knows he will be needing his Sharingan.

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MAY 2010

May 6, 2010 | ep. 159: Pain vs. Kakashi

Kakashi finally meets Pain’s Deva Path in battle. Kakashi immediately erects a wall with his earth element jutsu to block off their impending battle. He calls upon his Raikiri (Lightning Cutter, an enhanced and concentrated form of Sasuke’s Chidori) but Deva Path’s Rinnegan is activated. Kakashi misses his mark, but Deva Path manages to stabs Kakashi on his left shoulder instead. Kakashi attacks again, this time with an animal Raikiri, but is quickly repelled too.

Suddenly, out of no where, Asura Path (Shuradou) appears as a back-up for Deva Path. The Asura Path is almost robotic with much body alterations and fires various arsenals on its targets. Asura Path fires at Kakashi, but he dodges it. He creeps up to the Asura Path and tries a sneak attack, but Asura Path easily evades it. “Impossible,” Kakashi thinks. “He had his back to me.” Kakashi looks up, and realizes then this is what Fukasaku was talking about, the six Pains are all linked by their sight. They all see what the other Path sees. It hits him then, he will not be able to win this battle by himself, not when Jiraiya himself could not withstand the battle.

Deva Path

Deva Path

The Deva Path draws him in with his gravitational pull, while Asura Path waits patiently with his blade ready to throw the finishing punch. Kakashi is killed, but it is soon revealed that it was a lightning shadow clone that Asura Path got. Deva Path realizes that this person he is dealing with is extremely brilliant to be able to devise a plan and figure out his abilities in such a short span of time. This is someone he has to finish off, soon.

At the nick of time, Akimichi Chouji and his father Chouza emerge and quash Asura Path. After using his lightning shadow clone, Kakashi has only half of his chakra remaining. They have to act quickly and decisively. He now knows the Deva Path’s abilities. He is able to attract and repel objects or people using himself as the center of gravity. However, the technique cannot be used in rapid succession. The window of attack is between 5 seconds to a few minutes after each pull or push of energy, depending upon the force that had to be used. Kakashi shares this knowledge with Chouji and Chouza and quickly devises a plan with this small window in mind.

Asura Path

Asura Path

Kakashi attacks as a decoy, and when Deva Path disperses him with Shinra Tensei, Chouji and Chouza ensnare him. However, the corresponding attack is too slow. Deva Path had already recovered. Just as Kakashi uses his Raikiri to kill off a trapped Deva Path, Asura Path returns from the “dead.” Asura Path then uses himself as a human shield to protect the Deva Path from Kakashi’s Raikiri, just as Deva Path deploys a fatal attack against the Akimichis and Kakashi. Chouza uses himself to protect his son, while Kakashi is fatally injured and immobilized in a pile of rubble. This time, Deva Path is sure the Kakashi in front of him is no longer a clone. Using a nail, which he aims towards Kakashi’s head, Deva Path tells Kakashi, “Know Pain.” Kakashi falls. Thinking everyone dead, Deva Path leaves the scene.

Chouji awakens from the shock and realizes his father lies dead. Time is of the essence and Chouji is now the only one left alive to tell Tsunade of Pain’s abilities. As he tries to leave, Asura Path revives once again and launches a missile towards an escaping Chouji. A barely alive Kakashi is forced to protect the remaining informant in this massacre. In the earlier attack, Kakashi used his Mangekyou Sharingan to warp the nail away from him. Kakashi’s only known Mangekyou jutsu called Kamui can warp space by sending object(s) in a vicinity to another Kakashi uses his remaining life force to warp the missile away from Chouji, just as Asura Path realizes Kakashi’s ability.

Chouji finally reaches Tsunade to relay this message, as she feels Kakashi’s life slipping away from him. She, however, send Chouji back to his father, as he still has a chance of life. Tsunade leaves her protective circle and readies herself to meet with the enemy.

Kakashi drifts off and remembers his promise to Obito to protect Rin. Unfortunately, Kakashi only remembers his inability to protect anyone, thus, breaking his promise. He never protected Obito, nor Rin, nor his sensei, the Fourth Hokage. As he falls deeper into sleep, he arrives at a campfire. “This is where you have been all this time,” Kakashi states to the stranger. The stranger asks for his reason to be there. “It’s a long story,” Kakashi replies, “Father.”

May 13, 2010 | ep. 160: The Mystery of Pain

While Naruto daydreams and wonders about his village, Lord Fukasaku tells him to snap out of it. They need to practice merging together instead of wasting precious times. As Lord Fukasaku and Naruto begin to meditate to meld their breathing as one, the toad is suddenly hurled from Naruto. “That’s weird.” They try again. This time, Fukasaku tries it with the Amphibian Jutsu and sees Kyuubi safeguarding his vessel and throws Fukasaku off again. Fukasaku tells a confused Naruto that maybe this merge is impossible as Kyuubi is rejecting him. What was all that training for then? Is this exercise all for naught? How else can Naruto enter the Sage Mode during battle? Or can he use his kagebunshin, as he has done for his Rasengan and Rasenshuriken techniques?

Back in Konoha, Danzou tells his minions to stay hidden and await instructions instead of helping out the village. This, according to Danzou, is a necessary sacrifice of the village for him to be the Hokage. Plus, the Princess (Tsunade) is protecting the villagers with her slug Katsuyu.

At the Intel Division, Yamanaka Inoichi, Ino’s father, is called upon to probe the mind of Pain’s follower, Yuudachi. He immediately retrieves Yuudachi’s entire day of memories in under a minute and realizes that Pain was collecting dead bodies. Shizune arrives to share her previous information on Pain with Morino Ibiki and his team, but so has Pain’s Animal Path (Chikushoudo) who crashes the party with a Giant Rhino. Inoichi realizes he has seen that face before, it is the dead girl brought in by Yuudachi for Pain! But this is definitely the Animal Path, which Jiraiya also indefinitely killed. How is that possible?!

Animal Path

Animal Path

Communicating telepathically with Ino, Inoichi, Shizune and an Anbu make their way towards the Cipher Division to finish piecing their information together. But they are watched by the Human Path (Ningendou), the mind reader and soul reaper of Pain, as they flee the scene. Ibiki, the commanding officer of Konoha’s Anbu Torture and Interrogation Force, takes on the Animal Path with a few Anbu. The Anbu team try to restrain and cook up the Animal Path’s Giant Multi-headed Dog with a concerted effort of mud, encasement and lightning, but to no avail. Ibiki restrains the Giant Rhino with his Iron Maiden summon.

Morino Ibiki

Morino Ibiki

He then imprisons the Animal Path with his own summons – the torture chamber, where he slowly squeezes the young lass with piano strings. True pain, brings out the truth. But then he realizes too late that this person not only does not feel pain, but is cold like a dead body. The tables are turned as the Animal Path frees herself from the restraints and calls upon her summoning jutsu on Ibiki’s stomach. A Drill-Beaked Bird immediately breaks free from his back, as she leaves Ibiki’s mind trap. “You would never understand true pain.” Katsuyu immediately appears to attach herself to Ibiki to heal him.

The Animal Path then summons more animals: a ram, lobster and a chameleon, together with the earlier animals, the dog, rhino and the bird – to begin the destruction of Konohagakure.

May 20, 2010. ep. 161: I am Konohamaru of the Sarutobi Clan

Sarutobi Konohamaru (grandson of the Third Hokage) tries to convince his “Konohamaru Ninja Squad” team members: Udon and Moegi to join in the fight. He reasons with them that their duty is to protect the village now that Naruto is gone. He assures that he has now acquired a high-level jutsu that has to do with rotation, power and containment. The other two, instead, convinces him that their duty is to guide and protect the civilians to a safe house. Konohamaru relents and picks up an old lady to the infirmary. However, he witnesses Pain’s Naraka Path interrogating and eventual killing of two Konoha ninjas. Because they will not sell out their own comrade, the two had their tongues extended and then drained of life force.

Before Konohamaru escapes, he accidentally hits his head on a steel pipe, causing the Naraka Path (Jigokudou) to search for him. Ebisu sensei appears, giving Konohamaru a chance to escape. However, instead of running away, Konohamaru remains to watch the scene unfold. Ebisu is easily outmatched and caught by the Naraka Path. The Outer Path appears, only to the eyes of the captured.

Naraka Path

Naraka Path

Naraka Path’s ability lies in the use of summoning the Outer Path. It is a large head that emerges from the ground to interrogate, and in times of trouble, restore. Interrogation begins with the capture of the enemy. After the questioning, the mouth of the Outer Path opens and draw’s the victim’s life force from their mouth. If the victim lied, the Outer Path will consume the life force that is drained, thereby killing them. Otherwise, they would be spared. In restoration, the Outer Path ingests the destroyed being and soon a healed body emerges. In most combat formations with the other five Paths, the Naraka Path is protected by the rest, standing behind even the Deva Path. It’s healing abilities is one of Pain’s more important bodies.

A captured Ebisu is questioned and sees his life flashing before him. He trusts Naruto’s strong will to teach Konohamaru and the village the meaning of living, thus refusing to divulge Naruto’s location. Before Ebisu sensei is killed, Konohamaru throws kunai knives at Naraka Path, which immediately frees Ebisu sensei. Konohamaru psyches himself up, telling himself that there is no shortcut in the ninja world. Together with Naruto, they will both fight over the Hokage position. Konohamaru manages to dodge Naraka Path’s attacks through swift, evasive maneuvers, only to be hit eventually. Before he is caught, he realizes getting caught will be the end of the road for him. Finally he sees what the rest of the victims see, the Outer Path. Before he is drained of his life force, his shadow clone, which was used as a decoy to be captured, disappears. He finally uses the technique that Naruto has taught him. With another bunshin (clone), he attacks Naraka Path with the Rasengan! The Path retreats.

Back in Mt. Mokyubo, Naruto tries to pull in natural energy while running. Lord Fukasaku tells him that, unfortunately, this is an impossible task and the technique and training is at a dead-end. A glimpse at the etched code on Fukasaku’s back reminds Naruto that Jiraiya never gave in, even until the end. His master’s nindo (ninja way) is also his. They will never give up. However, Lord Fukasaku tells him to give up on trying to run and collect energy simultaneously. It’s a futile as telling him to look left while he is looking right. Right? Right! The light bulb goes off in Naruto. His kagebunshin (multiple clones) will indeed be his solution to the problem.

May 27, 2010 | ep. 162: The World Shall Know Pain

At the autopsy room, Preta Path (Gakidou) searches the bodies and finds one with rod chakras in it (the former Animal Path taken down by Jiraiya). He is ambushed by Kiba/Akamaru and his mom Inuzuka Tsume with her companion Kuromaru (the only talking ninken). They both attack him using the Dual Piercing Fang, but he uses the former Animal Path as a shield. They realize that physical attacks are disastrous for him. The Preta Path is capable of absorbing any ninjutsu technique, thus rendering it ineffective. It can also offensively absorb all the chakra from anyone he touches or grabs. Preta Path flees, but not before Akamaru leaves his dynamic markings on him. They give chase and corners him.

Preta Path

Preta Path

Shino, his father (Shibi) and a few of the Aburame clan members meet Konan and realize this is not Pain. They use their insects to attack her paper clones but realize that her clones are all armed with bombs. The real Konan has already been saturated with water, thus making her “weakness” against fire null.

Elsewhere, Guy’s team returns from a mission and sees the birds flying away from their village. They hastily make their return home.

The Deva Path/Yahiko finds Tsunade atop the headquarters of Konohagakure sending out her healing chakra through Katsuyu, but protected by Anbu. As Deva Path speaks, Tsunade realizes that this is one of the three children who were saved by Jiraiya, Yahiko. He tells her that her efforts of protecting Naruto, the bijuu, is futile. “The tailed beasts are no longer the power equalizers in the villages. (Since Akatsuki have captured and drained all but two remaining beasts) We are the ones controlling the wars now.”

“Don’t underestimate the five kages,” Tsunade replies.

She gets a Rinnegan attack in retaliation, but disperses it.

“The village’s (Konoha) past actions are unforgivable, but your actions now are worse!”

Deva Path presses for Naruto’s location, thinking that the villagers are protecting him.

“You have made one huge error. Naruto is strong. He is not being protected.”

Inoichi realizes that the woman with the summoning jutsu was the same corpse he saw being transported. Pain can revive the dead, and he controls them using the chakra rods. The six Pains are all corpses. Jiraiya’s coded message “the real one is not here” means that there is one out there controlling the corpses. Is it one or six? Either way, this person possesses a huge amount of chakra. If Pain is animating dead bodies (like puppets), in a similar manner to Inoichi clan’s mental manipulation jutsu, the real Pain pulling the strings (through his chakra rods) is at a relatively close location.

Unfortunately for them, before this information is sent to Tsunade, the Human Path (Ningendou) stops them. He ambushes them and captures Shizune.

Human Path

Human Path

The Human Path is capable of mind reading by placing its hand over the victim’s head. He retrieves information against the victim’s will. It’s most powerful and lethal ability lies in its power to rip the soul off his victim, killing the victim in the process. After catching Shizune, he immediately finds Naruto’s location and then rips off her soul. With that information, he shares it with the rest.

The Animal Path pulls back her summons from destruction. She proceeds to summon the rest: Preta, Human, Naraka, Asura and Deva Paths, so that Pain can use Shinra Tensei, a massive destructive jutsu. Pain severs his connection with all the Paths, except for Deva. Konan, who was also called back, warns Nagato against using such an attack as it will indefinitely shorten his life.

Before Deva Path leaves Tsunade, he chants, “Accept Pain. Know Pain. If you don’t know Pain, you will never know peace.” Tsunade realizes that Pain is not retreating but preparing for something colossal. She calls on Katsuyu to protect everyone, as she wonders what is keeping Naruto.

Back in Mount Mokyubo, a messenger toad hurries to Lord Fukasaku to tell him that Kosuke the messenger left in Konohagakure is dead as his name disappeared from the registrar. Something bad must be taking place in Konohagakure. Luckily, Shima, the wife of Lord Fukasaku is in the area and she immediately summons them.

Pain annihilates and flattens the entire Konohagakure using his “Shinra Tensei” – Almight Push. Katsuyu shields the people from the devastating blast. As Sakura pulls out from within Katsuyu, and sees the destruction, she cries out, “Naruto! Hurry come back!”

And he is back! Naruto returns to Konohagakure with an arsenal of toads: Fukasaku, Shima, Gamaken, Gamabunta, Gamakichi and Gamahiro,.

Gamaken, Gamabunta, Gamakichi, Gamahiro & Fukasaku

Gamaken, Gamabunta, Gamakichi, Gamahiro & Fukasaku

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JUNE 2010

June 3, 2010 | ep. 163: Explode! Sage Mode

Naruto is transported back to Konohagakure only to see the destruction of his beloved home by Pain. At first, he doesn’t even recognize his home as the entire village is leveled to the ground. Then he sees the Hokage Monument from a distant as the plume of dust settled.

A bleeding Tsunade sees the annihilation of Konoha and vows that Pain will not get away with this. Her guarding Anbu notices that the violet rhombus mark on her forehead has vanished. That mark is her Yin seal, a chakra gathering point, which Tsunade transferred to Katsuyu to protect and heal the living beings of Konoha. Elsewhere, the Aburame clan breaks out of their protective barrier of their insects. Kakashi and Shizune lay dead. Kiba is caught under a massive wall but manages to throw it off with his legs. Shikamaru’s leg is broken, while protecting Shiho, but that is the least of his worries. He ponders if Pain had a purpose to fulfill when he changed to guerrilla attack against the village. He surmises that he was after Naruto. He concludes that the entire village better pray that they will not be hit with the same attack again. Very true, because Tsunade no longer has the power to protect all of them.

Deva Path meets Naruto, while the rest of the Paths outside the walls of Konoha are revived again. Naraka Path calls upon his Outer Path to restore the dead Asura Path. Animal Path is thrown back into Konoha, who then summons the rest of the Paths back into the village. On cue, they all appear before Naruto, Fukasaku and the rest of the toads: Gamaken, Gamabunta, Gamakichi and Gamahiro. Fukasaku tells Naruto, that these are the same 6 Pains who took down Jiraiya. As the battle is about to begin, Tsunade appears and introduces herself as the Fifth Hokage and protector of Konohagakure. “Looks like you understand what pain is,” notes Deva Path. Asura Path immediately tries to attack a weakened Tsunade, but Naruto jumps in and destroys him with his Giant Rasengan, created by his kagebunshins, shadow clones.

Naruto vs. Pain - Asura Path

Naruto vs. Pain – Asura Path

“Reminds you of both of them,” Gamabunta observes with pride, as he sees Minato and Jiraiya in this promising lad.

Deva Path realizes his tendou powers will be replenished as soon as he prepares for the battle ahead. Naruto sends Tsunade away, under the protection of Gamakichi. He instructs her to get the villagers away from the battlefield too. Before Tsunade leaves, she puts the smallest of Katsuyu in his care, as the slug has intel on the six Pains. Little Katsuyu is taken into Fukasaku’s care, and slowly hides in the folds of Naruto’s clothes. Finally, Naruto asks the whereabouts of Kakashi. Tsunade doesn’t answer.

The moment Gamakichi tries to leave with Tsunade, Animal Path summons her rhinoceros, but is stopped by Naruto who hauls the animal by its tusk and throws it into midair. Gamakichi arrives safely at Sakura’s location, with his precious cargo. Sakura sees a transformed Tsunade – her actual self.

Naruto vs. Pain - Preta Path

Naruto vs. Pain – Preta Path

Naruto holds off the rest of the animal summons with his new Sage Art. Katsuyu tells Naruto that ninjutsu won’t work on Pain, and what’s more, all the Paths do not have a blind spot as their visions are linked. Gamabunta takes on the dog summon while Gamaken takes on the charging rhino. Naruto faces and crushes the Preta Path with Frog Kata, Kawazu Kumite (Toad Sage Fist). Deva Path notes that Naruto too has become a sage, much like Jiraiya sensei. Yes, they are brothers in training sharing one master. Naruto listens in disbelief as he refutes his belief that he was ever Jiraiya’s student since Jiraiya would never have called upon this kind of destruction even towards a sworn enemy. Jiraiya desired peace, but he never knew the true meaning of peace – according to Deva Path.

Calling upon his bunshins again, Naruto prepares his perfected Rasenshuriken. Elsewhere, Sakura “watches” the fight with a Hyuuga clan ninja telling her everything. When he sees the shuriken-like wind form and tells Sakura, she realizes Naruto is using the forbidden Rasenshuriken. Even Shima and Fukasaku are surprised by this new technique. Naruto hurls his Futon: Rasenshuriken towards the remaining Paths.

June 10, 2010 | ep. 164: Danger! Sage Mode Limit Reached

Rasenshuriken expands as it nears the four remaining Paths of Pain, taking out the Human Path in the process.The Animal Path manages to escape and summons her animals to her aid. The Chief Toad, Gamabunta, Gamaken and Gamahiro take on the three-headed dog. As they cut it up, the dog separates and increase in numbers. The drill-beaked bird attacks Naruto, as Animal Path ambushes him. Fukasaku notices (and so does the Deva Path) that Naruto is slowing down as he slowly loses his Sage chakra. Before he reaches his Sage Mode limit, they have to stop the Animal Path and her summons. Fukasaku and Shima both know what they have to do.

From afar, Shikamaru sees the huge crater and wonders who is fighting Pain. Katsuyu tells him that it is Naruto. There is no way Naruto can take the six Pains by himself. But Nara Shikaku, his father, stops him. The best teamwork is to stay out of his way, as he has requested. Naruto is on a league of his own now after having mastered the Sage Mode.

With his chakra slowly dissipating, Fukasaku hurls Gamabunta towards the Animal Path. Shima, using the Sage Art Wind Release: Sand Dust, Gamabunta traps the Animal Path in his mouth, and uses his Rasenrengan – twin Rasengans – to destroy it. The multiplied dogs disappear. Four down, two more to go: Naraka Path and Deva Path. But are they really down? However, he has run out of natural energy and has exited the Sage Mode. So his Sage Mode is good for only two Rasenshuriken. He has to use this attack wisely.

Naruto vs. Pain - Deva Path

Naruto vs. Pain – Deva Path

Shima urges Fukasaku to merge to Naruto now, as Deva begins his attacks against Naruto. Fukasaku tells Shima that they cannot join with him, because kyuubi is preventing Naruto from accepting other sources of chakra. Naruto will have to rely on his bunshins, as he himself realized. He pulls out his summoning scroll. Since he is unable to summon without Deva Path attacking him, Fukasaku retrieves the scroll from him to call upon his shadow clone from Mount Myouboku. Naruto left two shadow clones behind to gather natural energy for him. Two clones, therefore he has use for four Rasenshurikens left.

As Fukasaku summons Naruto’s clone, Naruto tells the Chief to step back, as he is reentering the Sage Mode. Just as Deva Path tries to stab him with a shuriken, Naruto enters the Sage Mode and deflects his attack. Naruto immediately creates and attacks with another Rasenshuriken only to have Preta Path absorb the attack. Naruto was sure he took this fat boy out. Katsuyu tells him then that the Naraka Path, standing right at the back of the six Pains’ formation, has revived Preta Path. But the most problematic, will be Deva Path, but he has yet to show his powers. Why is that? Either way, Naraka Path has to be destroyed first.  Creating a Rasenshuriken he hurls it towards the three remaining Paths, but creates a smokescreen to cover him. Preta Path absorbs the Rasenshuriken, but it soon turns out that Naruto had used the Transformation Jutsu to turn himself into a Rasenshuriken and neutralizes the Preta Path instead. The real Rasenshuriken heads towards Deva Path. While Deva Path is distracted, Naruto uses his clone to attack the Naraka Path with Rasenrengan, thereby defeating it.

Before Naruto can take out the Preta Path too, Deva Path’s power returns and he uses Shinra Tensei that temporarily surprises Naruto, thus allowing the Preta Path to escape. With each exertion of power, there is a 5-second window of attack for Naruto. Ninjutsu and Taijutsu won’t work on him. They will have to trap him with genjutsu, but Naruto sucks at that. Shima and Fukasaku will use their  genjutsu, like the last time with Jiraiya.

Gamabunta tries the attack Deva Path, but he escapes and uses Shinra Tensei again. The Chief Toad does down, and so do the other two.

June 17, 2010 | ep. 165: Kyuubi Capture Complete

Every one of Naruto’s friend realizes that he is fighting alone. They will have to put their faith in him. But Hinata doesn’t want it to be so, leaving him to fend for the village himself.

The three toads, Gamabunta (every bone in his body is broken), Gamaken (weakened) and Gamahiro (fate unknown, floating in a pond), are down. Fukasaku and Shima are trying to build their chakra towards their ultimate genjutsu, but they need time. Naruto will have to buy time, but he has to be careful, as he has only one clone left in Mount Myouboku and he, ironically, cannot prolong the battle anymore.

Even with four of the six bodies of Pain down (Asura, Animal, Human & Naraka), Deva suddenly uses his Bansho Ten, Universal Pull, to suck Naruto in, even as Naruto prepares to attack him. Unable to resist the pull, Preta Path locks him in. Hinata sees the alarming development. Not to worry, Deva Path assures Naruto, he will not kill him. He is, after all, the jinchuuriki for kyuubi. Unfortunately, the two toad elders have yet to accumulate enough chakra to aid Naruto. He still has to hold up against Pain by himself.

Preta Path begins absorbing Naruto’s chakra to nullify him. However, Preta Path is unable to handle natural energy, and Naruto knowing this pumps him even more with the Sage chakra, thus petrifying Preta Path into a frog statue. Naruto frees himself from his grasp, as he readies himself to battle Deva Path. Katsuyu reminds Naruto that this is not the real Pain. The Paths are all but puppets of the real Pain.

Naruto vs. Pain

Unfortunately, Deva Path is also ready for Naruto and the toad elders. Just as the elders are ready to use their genjutsu, Deva draws Fukasaku in and immediately kills him. Naruto and Shima are devastated by Fukasaku’s death. Before Naruto is able to react, he is once more drawn to Deva Path’s Bansho Ten, Universal Pull. Naruto is immediately immobilized when both his hands are impaled by Deva’s sword. Suddenly, kyuubi awakens from his slumber. “What do you want?!” Naruto screams. “Why are you doing this?”

“Why?” Deva wonders if he should even share his ideology with this young un. “Even if I told you, you can’t change it.”

According to Pain/Nagato via Deva Path/Yahiko, this goal is something that even Jiraiya cannot achieve. He wants to create peace to bring about justice.

Naruto cannot believe his ears. Peace and justice in one sentence with the devastation and death around him. “My master (Jiraiya). My sensei (Kakashi). My village. My friends. You dare talk about justice?”

Pain turns this around. What about Naruto’s goal now?

“To kill you. To bring peace and justice without you.”

Pain then throws this back at him. “What about MY family. My village. My friends.” He was once in Naruto’s shoes. The land of Fire and Leaf became too big. They were profiting from war, while the little nations (like his village) suffered from the pain and devastation. They are no different from each other. They both lost the same things. They know pain. They both seek vengeance under the guise of justice. The cycle of hatred is perpetrated. History repeats itself. It is hatred in the name of justice.

Naruto recalls Jiraiya’s words, that there is too much hatred in the ninja world, but he has faith that people will come to understand each other one day. Pain questions Naruto, how will he stop this hatred. Naruto is unable to reply.

Akatsuki was created to stop this cycle. They need kyuubi’s power to destroy villages and created tailed-beast weapons. But that is not peace.

Ino’s group meets Shikamaru’s group and they begin to share intel to unravel Pain’s secret. They will make themselves useful as Naruto fights the Paths alone. Even with Inochi’s power of detection, he cannot trace Pain’s real body. They will retrieve all of Katsuyu’s self to gather information on everyone who has encountered the Paths. As they share their information, a light bulb hits Inochi. The female body that he saw was transferred to a tall and wide tower. Pain is in the highest spot in Konohagakure!

Pain/Nagato speaks while being guarded by Konan in a secluded and secret place. He is loosing too much chakra, but peace is within his grasp.

Hinata sees a helpless Naruto. She will go to his rescue, even knowing she is no match against Pain.

June 24, 2010 | ep. 166: Confession

As Tsunade lies in a coma, Naruto returns to Konohagakure in the nick of time. He faces off with the six Paths of Pain and takes down five of them before being stopped by Deva Path. Unable to move (physically and mentally – after the talk with Deva Path), Deva Path tells Naruto that his death will lead to peace. Deva further immobilizes Naruto with more chakra rods on strategic locations of his body, thus pining him down. Shima calls out to him not to give up, as both Fukasaku and Jiraiya truly believed in him. Deva Path shuts her up for good and prepares for a final attack on Naruto. But Hinata comes to Naruto’s aid.

Guy’s team reaches the outskirts of the village and from afar, they see the body of Gamabunta, Jiraiya’s summon. Meanwhile Katsuyu will recall her little selves from those able and surviving villagers to help piece information on Pain together.

Hinata remembers her younger self being warned to stay away from Naruto. Even then, he promised everyone that he will one day become the Hokage of Konohagakure. She grew up unable to live up to her father’s expectations. During a test of prowess between Neji and Hinata, Hinata loses out to her cousin in front of her disappointed father. She runs away in tears, only to bump into a group of bullies.

Hinata knows she is no match against Deva Path, but she still goes to his rescue because she wants to. This time, she will be the one to protect him.

Hinata hyuga

Hyuga Hinata

“I have always chased after you, to catch you. You saved me. Naruto, I love you.”

With that speech, she prepares her stance for her gentle fist, and breaks one chakra rod holding Naruto down. She is immediately thrown away by Deva Path with his Universal Push technique. Even as she tries to approach Naruto, she is thrown away again. She prepares herself for her gentle step, two lion fist and gains a window of opportunity when Nagato coughs. She breaks another chakra rod, but Deva quickly recovers and sends Hinata flying into the distance.

“Hinata!”

Naruto came to her rescue during her childhood, even though he was no match against the three boys. He gets beaten up, but stands up again, telling the boys he will prove them wrong and become the Hokage.

“Hinata!!” he screams over and over again.

She stirs and regains consciousness. Barely able to stand, and fatally wounded, she stumbles her way toward Naruto. She falls. Naruto tells her not to approach him. He pleads with her to run away to save her life. She crawls to him and tries to pull the rod off his hands.

“I stand by what I say,” she mimics his words, “that’s my ninja way (nindou).”

She gets discarded like a rag doll by Deva Path. He approaches her, pulls out a chakra rod, and stabs her with it.

Naruto watches, unable to believe his eyes that Hinata is dead believing in him and protecting him.

“Know pain.”

In agony, kyuubi awakens.

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JULY 2010

July 1, 2010 | ep. 167: Planetary Devastation

Kyuubi’s power breaks out of the chakra rods put in place by Deva Path and immediately four tails appear. Deva quickly protects himself from kyuubi’s extreme rage and power. An awaken and uncontrolled kyuubi, with six tails out, hammers Deva into the ground, while the skeleton of the bijuu slowly forms. Deva pulls himself out from the ground and draws in water to douse kyuubi and attack him simultaneously. But kyuubi is too quick for him, and retaliates with a barrage of fire power against Deva Path. Tsunade’s gift to Naruto is activated to seal kyuubi, but he only crushes it and continues to grow. Kyuubi speeds through the growing body of water to reach an escaping Deva, only to have Shinra Tensei, Universal Push, used against him. kyuubi withstands it and grabs Deva’s head.

kyuubi with six tails

Deva Path manages to free himself from Naruto’s grip, but is thrown against a stone wall. Using his Universal Pull, Deva Path throws a boulder at Naruto to pin him down. Naruto breaks out of the boulder with a half conscious Hinata calling out to him.

Elsewhere, the ninjas realize that kyuubi’s power has been released. Sakura calls for an evacuation of the village. Yamato soon realizes that kyuubi’s six tails have appeared.

Deva draws kyuubi away from the village, not to lessen the destruction, but to draw him closer to the source of his chakra, Nagato’s hideout to use his ultimate technique Chibaku Tensei, Planetary Devastation. Mountains are moved to create a colossal ball in the sky, akin to a miniature moon, to trap kyuubi in it. An unconscious Naruto tries to break out of his unknown feeling and suffering. He calls out for help, only to be answered by a sealed kyuubi promising him the destruction of everything and to ease his suffering if only Naruto gave him his soul.  The eight tails form, while Naruto’s seal on his body is released. Kyuubi breaks out of Deva’s encasement with newly formed flesh on his bones.

Inside Naruto’s unconscious, kyuubi calls out to him to pull of his seal. As he reaches out to pull of the seal at the gate, the hand of Minato, the Fourth Hokage, reaches out to stop him. Naruto awakens from his hypnosis and is helped up by Minato.

July 15, 2010 | ep. 168: The Fourth Hokage

Minato Namikaze is the Fourth Hokage of Konohagakure and Naruto’s father. Before Naruto is tempted into releasing kyuubi, Minato appears to stop him. Minato put in a fail safe in Naruto’s chakra seal. When the eight tails appear in kyuubi and before the ninth is completed, Minato will appear. However disgusted he is in seeing kyuubi again, he is very happy to see his 16-year-old son. Naruto, hearing this, slowly realizes this is his father. The Third Hokage, Sarutobi, must have not told Naruto much for his own protection. Getting over this shock, Naruto punches Minato in the stomach. Why was kyuubi sealed in him? He had to suffer so much during childhood and work so hard just for people to like him. Minato apologizes for this slight, but explains that there was no other choice. Plus, he believed that his son would be able to overcome that hurdle in life. After all, he is the Fourth Hokage’s son.

Minato and Naruto

Minato and Naruto

As their talk continues, Minato draws on his suspicion that just like kyuubi was manipulated, there is another mastermind behind it all, the orange masked man – Uchiha Madara. People like Pain, whose lives were destroyed by war, know nothing but war and living in that vicious cycle of creating it. Pain is not the leader of Akatsuki. He is controlled by someone even more powerful and fearful. His hatred is used. Ninjas have to confront this hatred, just as Jiraiya left it to Naruto to find an end to this hatred. Still confused, Naruto asks for guidance and answers. He admits he is not the sharpest tool in the shed. But the Fourth Hokage has faith in him that he will find the answers himself. A parent will always have undying faith in his son. As his chakra dwindles, Minato restores Naruto’s chakra seal on his stomach for the last time. He leaves Naruto to find a more peaceful way of stopping Pain’s ideal of restoration through death and destruction.

Mighty Guy’s team finds an unconscious Hinata and a limp Lord Fukasaku. Gamabunta has to move to help Naruto.

Back at the fighting grounds, Deva Path watches in disbelief as the eight-tailed kyuubi breaks out of his Chibaku Tensei, Planetary Devastation. It disappears.

Naruto reappears in his sage mode. During his inner fight with kyuubi and meeting his father, he lost his last clone. He uses his remaining chakra for the sage mode. Nagato, pulling the strings from an undisclosed location, begins to cough violently. Naruto senses that Hinata is still alive but Lady Kutsuya tells him that he caused a great devastation to Konohagakure when kyuubi escaped.

Deva Path mocks Naruto in his attempt to chase after Sasuke. Naruto calmly replies that he wants to meet and speak to the real Pain face-to-face. So, just like his master, Jiraiya, Naruto has figured out that the Paths are all controlled by another person. However, Deva Path tells him that the talks have ended a long time ago. He also notes that Naruto’s Sage Mode only gives him enough power for two Rasenshuriken, and after that, he will be dead. Naruto immediately attacks Deva Path, and breaks his chakra rod. With that chakra rod, Naruto stabs himself with it, thereby reversing the track of chakra to Nagato and finally finding his location.

Now, Naruto just have to get rid of Deva Path who is standing in his way to Nagato. He calls on his clones to begin the creation of his Rasenshuriken, and hurls it. Deva Path uses his Almighty Push to dissipate it, and with that, Naruto has a 5 second window of attack. He summons his multiple bunshins (shadow clones) to attack Deva Path. Deva Path’s window opens again, and once again, he uses his Almighty Push. The clones hold on to Naruto. Naruto has to find the answers, especially when so many people are placing their trust in him – Jiraiya, the Fourth Hokage and Kakashi. The Sage Mode is gone, but Deva Path is left vulnerable for the next 5 seconds. Naruto attacks with a simple Rasengan!

July 15, 2010 | ep. 169: The Two Disciples

Sakura heals Hinata, while Team Guy meets with the rest. Katsuyu informs everyone gathered that Naruto has suppressed kyuubi by himself. Lee and Guy jump at the chance to see some action and help Naruto. Katsuyu stops them, telling them they will only be in his way. Although Naruto has defeated the six paths of Pain, he is not hurt, just exhausted. He will go the actual body of Pain (Nagato) alone. Shima mourns the passing of her husband.

With the attack of the Rasengan, the final Path of Pain is crushed. Naruto pulls out the chakra rods from the body, to disable it permanently. As he pulls the rods out, her remembers Deva Path telling him they were both searching for peace. They each have their own way of expressing justice. He proceeds to stab himself on his palm with the rod and sees all those who have died in Pain’s hatred and revenge; as Jiraiya called it – the world of hatred in the ninja world. Naruto heads out in search of Nagato.

While looking for Pain’s real body, Shikaku, Inoichi and a member from the Hyūga clan, meet Naruto. Inoichi asks if Naruto defeated Pain, to which Naruto answers that it didn’t matter who won or lost. He is at a lost for words, and needs to find his answers alone after finding Pain’s real body while in Sage Mode. Inoichi states angrily that talking doesn’t solve anything as proof in the destruction of the village and the lives lost. Shikaku steps in, and tells Inoichi to let Naruto go at it alone. He is only trusting his son’s instincts. Shikamaru sees something more in Naruto, something very important to the village, which makes him want to follow him. Oddly enough, Shikamaru does not praise anyone. The older generation will have to put their faith on him.

Before heading to the nest, Naruto quietly gathers the natural chakra and changes to the Sage Mode. After that, he digs into Nagato’s hideout and is met by Konan standing guard. “Move back,” he orders. She obliges.

Naruto finally sees the real Pain. He is emaciated, cooped up in a drum of a machine, with chakra rods sticking out of his back. Seeing him, Naruto remembers his master (Jiraiya) and teacher (Kakashi). Does he want to avenge them? If so, the cycle of hatred will begin again. As the Fourth Hokage says, “Hate is a system that gives birth to the Pains of the world.” Jiraiya had entrusted and believed in him to find a way out of this hatred.

Nagato fires a rod and Naruto is injured. He purposely missed his vitals to save the precious jinchuuriki, but kyuubi’s chakra leaks out and overpowers Nagato. Naruto is not there for a fight. He is there to confirm his feelings, as he stood before his enemy. It is true, he cannot forgive him, and wants to kill him. He resists Nagato’s holding chakra as he attacks and Konan prepares to block. But then a memory of Jiraiya creeps up to him, and he stops short of the attack. Jiraiya believed that people would understand each other, that above all, Naruto will find the answers. It is not a simple task; it is too easy speaking the words of forgiveness but harder to extend a hand of love. The sage mode disappears.

Naruto questions Nagato, as a fellow student of Jiraiya, how did he turn out as he has, killing others mercilessly? He will share his pain with him.

Yahiko__Nagato__Konan

Yahiko, Nagato & Konan

July 29, 2010 | ep. 170 & 171: Big Adventure! Search for the Fourth Hokage’s Legacy – Part 1 & 2

**Filler alert!** Naruto has traveled a long way to become who he is.

Time travels back to the Chunnin Exams for the youngsters of Konohagakure. Only Naruto, Neji, Sasuke, Shikamaru and the Sand Village Siblings: Gaara and Temari remain, vying for the final round. People travel from near and far into Konohagakure to watch the next generation shine. Others go there to gamble on the next big thing. Will it be Naruto or Neji? The last Uchiha or Gaara of the Sand?

Naruto trains with Jiraiya; learning to summon the frogs, but ends up summoning tadpoles with legs and tail and promptly falls from exhaustion. While drifting off for a snooze, Naruto overhears Jiraiya saying something about finding the Fourth Hokage’s Legacy. When he awakens, he makes it his mission to find that legacy. He dashes off to the Third, but the stingy old geezer doesn’t want to share. No one wants to share the secret. He finally bumps into Mighty Guy, who “accidentally” lets slip about the Legacy being at the Honey Honey Grounds.

On his way there, he meets Sakura who insists on going with him. This is not for his benefit, but to retrieve the Legacy for Sasuke. Meanwhile, they are followed by Rain Village ninjas who are sore from not getting into the final round. As Sakura and Naruto reaches the gates of the Honey Honey Grounds, Naruto runs right into the electric fence trying to enter. After getting electrocuted, they find Shikamaru, Choji and Ino in the compound already. After they all enter, they see Guy dressed as an old Sage handing them a tiger scroll. Naruto is the only misguided fool who believes an old Sage is guarding the Grounds.

Their journey begins with the test of passing through a giant spider tightrope. The scroll offers its first wisdom, “Close the blades, calm the heart.” With that, they pass through their first obstacle. Then they move on to a cave, but Shikamaru sensing  danger, goes up to the mountains alone. Naruto follows and they are ambushed by the Rain Village ninjas. They are quickly dispersed when they realize they are no match to Naruto’s bunshins and Shikamaru’s brilliance.

“Offer a wild chrysanthemum…” At the cave, the team is pummeled by sleeping gas. Choji blocks the hole to a giant flower while hitting a switch, thereby extracting the gas from the chamber. After escaping the gas chamber, they reach an opening. “Be extremely nimble, show determination.” Naruto immediately jumps into a raft on a river. It soon takes them to a fall that will be their watery demise. Naruto immediately makes a leap of faith to the right with everyone following his lead and find themselves on a safe ground.

They reach their final hurdle. Ino and Choji stop Sakura and Naruto from moving forward. “Go beyond hatred, for the one who approaches, the path will not open…” Shikamaru tells them, that if they have learned anything from this journey, is that they are all stronger as a team. Naruto offers his hand, but Shikamaru gives him the scroll instead. As they enter a huge room filled with too many scrolls, the Rain ninjas have followed them. They summon the rain, which floods the room the young Konoha ninjas are in. This is no ordinary water, as the flood slowly drains their chakra. However, Sasuke arrives on Kakashi’s orders to test out his chidori. He takes them all down and the rain dissipates.

After the rain clears, they see a talking parrot and Naruto is forced to play nice. Upon stepping on a tile, the floors open up. They may just have found the Fourth’s Legacy! “The location of the infinity, to the one anointed.” Naruto pulls out the scroll and out pops the “old Sage.” He tells them they have broken the Fourth’s record and in turn, gains the Legacy. The legacy is written in the scroll.

After this trial, the youngsters just want someone from their village, instead of their own team, to win the chuunin exam. The scroll reads, “There is no shortcut to being a ninja.” If there isn’t a shortcut, then Naruto will just take the long way – all the way from the start of the journey again!

AUGUST 2010

August 5, 2010 | ep. 172: Meeting

Gamabunta has been returned to Mount Myouboku and the Great Lord Elder awakens him. The Elder tells him that the two children of the prophecy are finally meeting and talking.

Nagato resolves to share his story with Naruto, considering that he alone brought down the six paths of Pain. His first pain started as a kid in Amegakure, Hidden Rain Village, during the Second Great Shinobi World War. As food became scarce, two Konoha ninjas broke into his home looking for food, unaware that there were still inhabitants in it. Nagato’s parents thought of escaping with their only child while the ninjas were busy. However, a slight noise draws the attention of the ninjas. Mistaking the civilians as enemy ninjas, the Konoha ninjas attack Nagato’s parents. His parents died protecting him. The ninjas apologize for their hasty mistake, but it is too late. In anger and grief, Nagato’s Rinnegan awakens and unintentionally kills off the ninjas.

He soon wanders the land looking for food, and his pain soon turned into hatred. When everyone turned him away, he found friends in a dog he named Chibi, Konan and Yahiko. The three become fast friend as Yahiko leads them with his wit and strength. The three war orphans are forced to become stronger to fend for themselves, just to live. Yahiko hasn’t lost hope though. He vows not to perish in a place like this. He will rise to the top and dominate the world, because as the ruler of the world, he can do whatever he wants. However, as they travel closer to the war zone, they are attacked by shuriken bombs and Chibi becomes its first casualty. They witness the fight between Hanzou of the Amergakure with the soon to be named Sannin: Jiraiya, Tsunade and Orochimaru. They manage to escape, and Yahiko vows that he will have to be God to stop the fighting. To change, they need more power. He will learn ninjutsu, not from Hanzou who killed his parents, but from Konoha’s ninjas. However, what will Nagato do, as it is the Konoha ninjas who killed his parents, thus making him an orphan?

Nagato follows Yahiko and Konan. Together, the three begin looking for the Sannin to beg them to teach them their art. They soon run into the Sannin as the war ends, and Jiraiya takes the three on as students.

August 12, 2010 | ep. 173: The Origin of Pain

The three orphans watch in awe as the soon-to-be-legendary Sannin take on Hanzou of Amegakure. After that, Yahiko approaches them, asking the Sannin to teach them ninjutsu to protect themselves. However, Nagato only sees Jiraiya’s headband and remembers the Konoha ninjas killing his parents. Konan presents them an origami flower but Orochimaru scoffs at at the gift and the orphans. Orphans of war will have a harder time surviving. It is better to kill them to free them from their misey.

After Orochimaru threatens to kill the orphans, Jiraiya steps in. Instead of returning to Konoha after the war, Jiraiya takes on the task of teaching the orphans to care for themselves. In this way, they can atone for their sins of the war. During his stay with the orphans, the two boys are attacked by an Iwagakure ninja. Nagato unintentionally uses his Rinnegan again to protect Yahiko and kills the ninja. When Jiraiya and Konan gets to them, Jiraiya sees Nagato’s powers. He begins to train them in ninjutsu to enable the children to protect themselves, and for Nagato to learn to control his Rinnegan. Not knowing how to handle killing another human being, Nagato finds solace in talking to Jiraiya. Jiraiya tells him to use his eyes to find peace for the world. His action was neither right nor wrong. But it saved a friend. At that point, Nagato realizes he has accepted Jiraiya as his sensei. To know pain, he has to arrive at his own answers to grow, even though the world is thick with hatred. Nagato realizes he has to protect his friends.

After three years of training, Jiraiya leaves the orphans to fend for themselves once again and returns to Konoha. Nagato’s Rinnegan could be the answer to peace. Before leaving, Jiraiya tells Nagato the story of a monk, Rikudou Sennin, the Sage of the Six Path, who preached ninshuu, which later became ninjutsu. He possessed the Rinnegan and wanted to bring peace and order to the world. In a war-torn world, ninshuu was not meant for military purposes. It was to establish peace that he passed down to his two sons to achieve. His power was so great that he was the first known jinchuuriki, harboring the original ten tails in him. The older son, inheriting the Sennin’s eyes, believed that power was the key to peace. While the younger son, who later became his successor, inherited the Sennin’s body. He believed that love was the true key to peace. With the succession passed to the younger son, the bitterness and envy grew between the brothers. Their feud will continue to their descendants, the Senju and the Uchiha clan.

Jiraiya, even though far from them, always received news of their exploits through the years. The news was always of someone else’s demise in connection to them, until he finally got word that they too had perished.

Yahiko, Nagato and Konan

Yahiko, Nagato and Konan

The truth is, the three orphans wanted to find peace as Jiraiya had taught them. With Yahiko as the leader, their peace organization grew. While the Rock, Leaf and Sand village were at war, the Rain village, under Hanzou called on them to use their influence to spread peace to the other nations. When they returned to Amegakure as ninjas, Hanzou, the leader, saw them as a threat to his rule and schemed with Konoha’s Anbu Foundation under Danzou to eliminate them. The three were ambushed in the guise of a peace talk, and Nagato was forced to kill Yahiko or watch Hanzou kill Konan. Not wanting Nagato to choose, Yahiko impaled himself as he believed Jiraiya’s prophecy of Nagato being the savior of the world. In his anguish and devastation, he summoned Kuchiyose: Gedou Mazou, the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path, to kill Hanzou. The giant statue released multiple chakra rods from its abdomen and pierced Nagato’s back, thereby sucking up his chakra. As he is slowly drained, a dragon like beast is released. When Hanzou escaped, the chakra rods broke off from the statue, but remain embedded in Nagato’s back as he became emaciated. Severing his ties with Amegakure, he scratched through the forehead protector of the village and resolved to teach the village and the world of his pain. Nothing has changed since the death of his parents. It didn’t change with the death of Yahiko either. This became Nagato’s second great pain of his life, which eventually led to the creation of Akatsuki with Uchiha Madara.

August 19, 2010 | ep. 174: The Tale of Naruto Uzumaki

The story of the emergence of Pain continues with every one of his friends, comrade and village dying at the hands of the Land of Fire who profited from the war through the sale of “peace.” Peace is nothing by bloodshed for small countries that are unable to defend themselves. True peace does not exist. Nagato once bought into Jiraiya’s ideals but quickly realized that it was nothing but wishful thinking. Now that the story is complete, what is Naruto’s answer?

Naruto pulls out a book, which Jiraiya wrote about his hopes of everyone understanding each other one day. It is true, that he cannot bring himself to forgive Nagato for his actions. Naruto hates him. But, Jiraiya left his hope with him. And because Ero-sennin believed in Naruto, Naruto believes in the vision of Ero-sennin. That is his answer. He will not kill Nagato. That will only perpetrate the cycle.

Nagato laughs at his naïvety. There is no true peace. How long can Naruto wait for, and hope for something like that?

Naruto vows to “break the curse. I will never give up.” To stop the hatred and achieve real peace, the vicious cycle of hatred has to be broken. These are words taken straight from Jiraiya’s book, his first novel that changed the world of the ninjas. In his final chapter, he wrote about his student, Nagato. It was during a rainy night, while Jiraiya took a break from his writing, Nagato visited him. He had thought about hatred and how peace has yet to be achieved. The young Nagato promises that he “will break the curse one day.” At that moment, Nagato became Jiraiya’s muse. Jiraiya found his point for his novel. And that name of the hero is…he looks to his bowl of half-eaten ramen.

Soon Jiraiya leaves to return to Konoha. The youngsters cry as they bid their final farewells to their teacher, not knowing this was the last time they would see him. Nagato finally thanks Jiraiya for being a teacher to him, accepting his alliance to Konoha. When they return to their home, Nagato sees that Jiraiya left his novel behind. “If there is such thing as peace, I will find it,” the protagonists says to his assassin. “My name is…”

Jiraiya truly believed in the prophecy of one of his students bringing world peace. As Yahiko once believed as he gave his life to save Konan’s and Nagato’s, telling him, “You’re the savior of the world.”

“My name is Naruto!” Naruto reveals the name of the Jiraiya’s hero. He will honor his master’s legacy. Not only will he become the Hokage, he will bring peace to Amegakure.

“How?!” Nagato questions Naruto. “How can you possibly say you won’t stray from the path and have the confidence to believe in yourself?”

Naruto can say that because he too has carried his own cross to bear. He knew of pain as a child growing up alone, without friends, ostracized by the village. He knew pain when he finally won friends, comrades and enemies over only to lose a brother to vengence. He knew pain when he began to rely of “foreign” power, but hurt his friends instead. He knew pain when he lost his village, his master, and his teacher simultaneously. But he won’t stop believing because of the pain. He can’t cease being the hero of the novel by rewriting the story and changing it.

As brothers who share the same master, they should have been taught the same thing. However, Nagato is unable to believe in Jiraiya or himself. However, he believes in Naruto’s way of finding peace. He summons his final and most powerful jutsu with the remainder of his chakra and life force, his seventh path Gedō: Rinne Tensei no Jutsu (Outer Path: Samsara of Heavenly Life Technique). Rinnegan’s power can call upon life and death. Konan watches as Nagato sacrifices his life for this boy, believing in his ideals.

Elsewhere, the toads watch as Jiraiya’s students bring about the peace Jiraiya could only wish for. In fulfilling his pre-ordained future, Jiraiya never gave up.

August 26, 2010 | ep. 175: Hero of Konoha

Using the Gedou, Nagato revives the fallen citizens, killed during the invasion, of Konohagakure. The Gedou reinfuses new life force energy to the dead. With the body as an anchor, the souls leave the crossroad of life and death, and return to the vessels. There is a limited time for the technique to be used. He is unable to bring back those who have died for an extended period of time: Yahiko and Jiraiya. Nagato ages before Konan and Naruto, and atones for his past mistakes by giving up his life to revive Konohagakure.

War is an infliction of pain, through the death of loved ones. Eternal hatred cannot heal pain. With his dying breath, Nagato places his trust on Naruto to bring about the much sought after and elusive peace. Konan then embalms the bodies of Nagato and Yahiko to return to Amegakure, and severs her ties with Akatsuki. She places both Yahiko’s and Nagato’s dreams on Naruto.

The once fallen of Konohagakure are revived: fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, lovers, teachers, students. Kakashi, speaking with his father, the famed White Fang, asks him why he chose to go against the ninja code just to save friends and ends up dishonoring his name in death. But before he answers, Kakashi tells him he finally understands why he chose that path and is proud of him. With that, Kakashi is drawn back to the world of the living, together with Fukasaku. Everyone in Konohagakure realizes that Naruto has saved the village, as Lady Katsuyu spreads the good news.

Naruto stumbles back to Konoha, but not before paying his respects to Jiraiya. It is done. Just as he is about to fall from exhaustion, Kakashi is there to catch him, and carry him home. He thinks to himself, “He has gotten heavy.” As they approach the village, Naruto is greeted by the cheers of the villagers waiting for his heroic return. This once ostracized boy has definitely done well. He was once feared as a child, jeered at for being in Kakashi’s team and ridiculed before overcoming Neji at the Chunnin exam. Through all the tribulations, he never gave up and stayed true to his ninja way. He took on Gaara to protect the village, brought Tsunade and Jiraiya back to the village after defeating Orochimaru and convinced Tsunade to take on the leadership role of the 5th Hokage. He even fought a brother to bring him home, and rescued the Kazekage Gaara after Akatasuki began gathering jinchuurikis. He dealt with the death of his protector and master, Jiraiya, and even learned to master the Sage Mode, all through sheer determination and never giving up.

Iruka sensei was once told by the 3rd Hokage Sarutobi, that the 4th sealed kyuubi in Naruto to make him the hero of the village. However, he grew up having to validate and prove his existence. Sixteen years later, he is the hero that the 4th and the 3rd dreamed of. Naruto is overjoyed. But so are his friends and teachers who know how far he has traveled.

Naruto Shippuden 4: The Lost Tower will be released July 31, 2010

• SEASON 9 (September 2010 – January 2011)

• SEASON 10 (February 2011 – July 2011)

• SEASON 11 (July 2011 – Dec. 2011)

 

• SEASON 12 (January 2012 – August 2012)

 

• SEASON 13 (August 2012 – present)

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