Naruto Chapter 697 – The Fated Battle: Sasuke

Naruto chapter 697 - Goodbye my friend - colour by HikariNoGiri (http://hikarinogiri.deviantart.com)

Farewell my one and only friend – colour by HikariNoGiri

I am going to be honest here, but I seriously can’t come to like this battle, be it because it is a battle between friends or just because it feels so dam forced or both, I really am not enjoying it. I would have enjoyed it much more if the final antagonist of the series was the Shinju and the Naruto and Sasuke conflict was settled much earlier. The Naruto and Sasuke battle may have been fated, but relative to the weight the Shinju fight held, this battle feels so weak and forgettable. It doesn’t feel like it connects with the rest of the story, I just can’t help but feel that it is only included in the story because Kishimoto-sensei forced it in rather than it arising naturally through the flow of the story.

You can tell Sasuke doesn’t want to kill Naruto, but he forcing himself to want to because he feels that the only way forward is to kill his own heart and isolate himself from his humanity. That is the only way Sasuke believes the world can be saved, for him to transcend his humanity and become a “God” of sorts for the world. It may appear to be an incredibly selfless act in his own eyes, but all Sasuke is doing is being conceited thinking that the world can’t be saved without his help. Sasuke is ignoring the fact that the world survived billions of years without him and fails to realise that it can continue surviving without him for another billion years.

Naruto chapter 697 - Sasuke and Naruto

Part of Sasuke really doesn’t want to kill Naruto

It was interesting seeing the counters Sasuke had to Naruto’s attacks the counters Naruto had for Sasuke’s but ultimately the power which Hagoromo gave Sasuke is allowing him to gain the upper hand. It is strange how whenever Sasuke needs power it is given to him – Orochimaru, Itachi, Hagoromo. And of course, when Sasuke needs chakra, he has the Rinnegan available to allow him to steal it from Naruto. Has Sasuke ever earned something before? Before deciding who he feels earns the right to live in his revolutionised world, Sasuke should first earn the right to decide that for everybody. I really am looking forward to the moment in which Sasuke is crushed and Naruto reigns victorious over him.

The cliff hanger was dramatic but Naruto isn’t going to die, so the farewell which Sasuke is expressing is grossly premature. Ah just when I was starting to like Sasuke, these recent chapters have caused me to dislike with a passion Sasuke’s immaturity and reluctance to realise how unnecessary his actions are for the continuation of the world’s survival. Hopefully the next few chapters are able to conclude the series off in an inspiring way. Looking forward to the next chapter.

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