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Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9 – Original & Uncut (a J!-ENT Anime DVD Review)

March 15, 2012 by  



More action and more fun!  “Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9 – Original and Uncut” features many of the characters of the Konoha Village in an all-out battle against enemies orchestrated by Orochimaru and Kabuto.  If you are staying with “Naruto Shippuden” for the long haul, this anime series is recommended!

Image courtesy of © 2002 Masashi Kishimoto/2008 Shippuden. All Rights Reserved.

DVD TITLE: Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9 – Original & Uncut

DURATION: Episodes 101-112 (300 Minutes)

DVD INFORMATION: 2.0 Stereo Surround Sound, Bilingual (Japanese & English), English Subtitles

COMPANY: Shonen Jump/Viz Media

RATED: Rated T for Older Teen

Release Date: January 24, 2012

Originally created by Masashi Kishimoto

Series Directed by Hayato Date

Produced by Tomoko Gushima, Ken Hagino

Series Coordinator by Junki Takegami, Satoru Nishizono

Character Design by Tetsuya Nishio, Hirofumi Suzuki

Music by Yasuharu Takanishi, Yaiba

Music Production by Aniplex

Anime Production by TV Tokyo, Pierrot

Featuring the following voice talent:

Junko Takeuchi/Maile Flanagan as Naruto Uzumaki

Chie Nakamura/Kate Higgins as Sakura Haruno

Noriaki Sugiyama/Yuri Lowenthal as Sasuke Uchiha

Akira Ishida/Liam O’Brien as Sabaku no Gaara (Gaara of the Desert)

Hideo Ishikawa/Crispin Freeman as Itachi Uchiha

Houchu Ohtsuka/David Lodge as Jiraiya

Kazuhiko Inoue/Dave Wittenberg as Hatake Kakashi

Kentarou Itou/Robbie Rist as Chouji Akimichi

Kenyuu Horiuchi/Troy Baker as Pain

Kouichi Toochika/Steve Staley as Neji Hyuuga

Kousuke Toriumi/Kyle Hebert as Kiba Inuzuka

Kujira/Steven Blum as Orochimaru

Masako Katsuki/Debi Mae West as Tsunade/Fifth Hokage

Nana Mizuki/Stephanie Sheh as Hinata Hyuuga

Nobutoshi Canna/Henry Dittman as Kabuto Yakushi

Rikiya Koyama/Troy Baker as Yamato

Romi Paku/Tara Platt as Temari

Ryoka Yuzuki/Colleen O’Shaughnessey as Ino Yamanaka

Satoshi Hino/Ben Diskin as Sai

Shinji Kawada/Derek Stephen Prince as Shino Aburame

Yasuyuki Kase/Michael Lindsay as Kankurou

Yoichi Masukawa/Brian Donovan as Rock Lee

Orochimaru’s minion Guren will do anything to stop the Leaf ninja from sealing Three Tails, but the Leaf’s top shinobi will be tough to beat! While a sealing team tracks the location of the beast and its host, a guard team led by Kakashi and Naruto fends off attacks from Guren. But it’s no ordinary battle when Naruto finds himself fighting alongside his enemy in a most unusual location – inside the Three-Tailed Beast!

Since 1999, “Naruto” created by Masashi Kishimoto (“Karakuri”) has been one of the most popular anime and manga series in Japan and has easily become a favorite best selling anime/manga series among fans all over the world.

For the anime series, since 2002, “Naruto” lasted until 2007 with a total of 220 episodes. The series would follow the adventures of a boy named Naruto Uzamaki, who may not be the brightest ninja from the Konoha Village but he makes it up with heart and also tremendous power as the killer beast known as the nine-tailed fox has been sealed within him.

Earlier in the series, the anime series focused on Naruto and his team members Sasuke Uchida and Sakura Haruno as they would go on adventures and learn to become a team and also honing their ninja abilities. The series would then begin to introduce other young ninjas from the village who Naruto would be paired up with and the young ninjas would take on rival clans to helping people in need. But somehow as the series continued, Sasuke Uchida would then go off on his own personal mission to stop his brother Itaki Uchida, who murdered the whole Uchida clan and his family, only leaving Sasuke alive.

Within those six years, we have seen Naruto and his friends grow as friends and also in their abilities. For Naruto, all he has wanted is to become the next Hokage (the leader of the village) when he grows older and to help his friends accomplish missions. He knows that to be a good leader, he will need to get stronger so he can protect the village once he grows older. Of course, there is so much involved in the “Naruto” anime series and what makes its special is its humor, its action but also how well the series integrates so many characters but yet features a good number of character driven episodes that makes the viewer appreciate many of the characters in the series.

“Naruto”, the first series ended with the young ninja leaving to train with Jiraiya for two-and-a-half years.

In “Naruto Shippuden”, the storyline now features everyone a little grown up but the stakes are much higher.  We learn that the Akatsuki including Orochimaru are looking for those who possess a jinchuriki. With this power, this will give too much power to evil and this can lead to the death of many people and the destruction of many villages.

In the past few volumes, the Leaf Village along with other villages have managed to defeat the Akatsuki, unfortunately the price paid was the death of Asuma and a few other members of the Leaf and Sand Ninja.

Now, Orochimaru using Kabuto, have their sites set on capturing the Three Tail Jinchuriki and to to that, they will need to use a young boy named Yukimaru.

But Yukimaru has looked up to Guren, the woman responsible for killing Yukimaru’s mother (which he doesn’t know about) and a woman who had aligned herself with Orochimaru.    Guru knows they need the Three Tail beast but the more the two are together, the more Guren starts to feel like she is his guardian and wants to take care of him.  In fact, Yukimaru looks to Guren as a place called home.

Meanwhile, Naruto searches for Yukimaru as he blames himself for telling Yukimaru of trying to find a place called “home” and not knowing that the person he has given all his trust to is Guren, a person working for Orochimaru.

Because of the severity of this mission, Lady Tsunade sends out various teams in order to protect another team that must seal the Three Tail Jinchuriki before Orochimaru or the Akatsuki can capture it.

VIDEO:

One thing I noticed when it came to “Naruto” is that the series has had its share of well-animated and well-painted artistic backgrounds but then for some of the filler episodes, has had a decrease in quality. Fortunately, “Naruto Shippuden” continues to look awesome. I really like how the characters look much older and the emotions on the character’s faces. For this volume, it does go back to a bit of monotonous landscapes.  A lot of trees, a lake, underwater and mountains.  Not much of the action is taken place anywhere else.  But the storyline focuses on the action than location and as far as picture quality goes, it is good and what one can expect from DVD.

AUDIO & SUBTITLES:

As for the audio, the audio for “Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9” is pretty much Dolby Digital Stereo 2.0 Bilingual (Japanese and English). Similar to a series like “Dragon Ball Z”, with “Naruto”, I have always enjoyed the voice acting of the English dub series. It’s well done and the voices fit the characters very well.

Especially Maile Flanagan’s Naruto Uzumaki. Personally, I didn’t think there would be a voice actor that could capture Junko Takeuchi’s Naruto vocals and sure enough, Flanagan does a great job. But I have watched the series in Japanese and English and for the most part, voice acting for both soundtracks are well-done.

Since the series is front channel driven, for those with a modern home theater receiver probably will enjoy a more immersive soundscape by selecting stereo on all channels.

Subtitles are in English.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9 – Original & Uncut” comes with the following special features on disc 3:

  • More from Viz Media – Trailers for upcoming or current Viz Media releases.
  • Online Features – Text-based screen of where “Naruto Shippuden” can be watched online.
  • Story Boards – Ten pages of storyboards (featured in negative format).
  • Production Art – Using your remote, you can view through ten pages of artwork.
  • Omake – (6:03) All the omake ending portions (after the credits) from the episodes featured in DVD Set 9 of “Naruto Shippuden”.
  • English Credits

In “Naruto Shippuden” vol. 9, we get an entertaining filler storyline which revolves around Naruto wanting to save a child that is tied to a Jinchuriki.

And it’s a filler episode that actually makes sense as for those who are reading the manga series, anyone possessing a jinchuriki are now targets by the Akatsuki and Orochimaru.  So, it would make sense to see how the side of evil are going after these targets and seeing the Leaf ninja doing all they can to prevent it.

This volume is about the three-tailed demon turtle and about a boy named Yukimaru who has the power to bring out the demon turtle which lays underwater.   Orochmaru sends out the deadly ninja named Guren to look over the boy, but unexpectedly, both Guren and Yukimaru begin to bond, almost like mother and son or older sister and younger brother.   She doesn’t want anything bad to happen to him and because Yukimaru had contact with Naruto about being happy and finding a home he can go back to, that home for the young boy is by being close with Guren.

Of course, Naruto and the leaf ninja know that this is Orochimaru’s scheme and for Naruto, he is desperate in wanting to save this boy.  Meanwhile, this volume gives people a chance to see the other Leaf ninja in action.   And this is probably the biggest difference with the manga series as the manga had begun to focus on this deep plot involving the Akatsuki, the beloved characters of the Konoha village are hardly featured anymore.

So, with these filler episodes, the writers wanted to bring them together and involve them in a major battle as a few of the female characters try to seal the three-tailed demon turtle, others are in battle.

And because the series can allow some time and separation with the manga series, it’s inevitable that there will be an elongated storyline of filler episodes.  Fortunately, unlike the original “Naruto” series which had a lot of 3-4 story arcs, this one has managed to last a quite awhile and I think from here on in, the standard will be to incorporate a storyline from the manga which Masashi Kishimoto had created and then dedicate the remainder of episodes to filler.  And because the storyline of the Akatsuki and Orochimaru targeting people who are tited to a jinchuriki is not shown entirely in the manga series, it allows the writers for the anime series to focus on it and build a whole storyline arc around it.

While filler episodes are not for everyone, in the case of “Naruto Shippuden”, there is only so much the writers can do in order to incorporate what is seen on manga and with the creator’s timeline. Otherwise, the other option is to go on hiatus for several years and return, as what was done with the “Inuyasha” series, so there is no over-reliance on filler episodes.

As for the DVD set, you get a total of eleven episodes and a few special features such as storyboard, production art and the ending omake for each episode.

Overall, I feel the writers have much more to work with in “Naruto Shippuden” vs. what was done towards the latter half of the original “Naruto” series.  We are watching a lot of filler episodes but these are filler episodes that are entertaining and relevant to the overall storyline.

If you are fan of “Naruto Shippuden” and are staying with this series for the long haul, “Naruto Shippuden DVD Set 9 – Original & Uncut” is another entertaining and action-packed volume worth watching.






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