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Naruto volume 51 by Masashi Kishimoto (a J!-ENT Manga Review)

June 29, 2011 by  



An awesome volume of “Naruto” as Danzo and Sasuke fight to the death, meanwhile Sakura plans to confront Sasuke on her own.  This volume is full of emotion and soul and balances quite well with the action featured in the manga.  A very impressive volume that fans will truly appreciate.  Highly recommended!

© 1999 by Masashi Kishimoto. All Rights Reserved.

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MANGA TITLE: Naruto Volume 51

STORY AND ART BY: Masashi Kishimoto (岸本 斉史)

FIRST PUBLISHED IN JAPAN: SHUEISHA, Inc.

PUBLISHED IN USA BY: VIZ Media, LLC/Shonen Jump Manga

RATED: T for Older Teen

RELEASE DATE: June 7, 2011

Sasuke finally takes on Danzo, the leader of Konoha, determined to interrogate him about the Uchiha clan and what really happened between the political factions of Konoha and his brother, Itachi!

The popular manga series “Naruto” has been going strong since its debut in Shueisha back in 1999 via “Weekly Shonen Jump” magazine.

The manga by Masashi Kishimoto is about a young ninja named Naruto Uzamaki, a ninja of the Konoha leaf village who grew up facing prejudiced within his fellow ninjas because the evil nine-tailed fox was sealed inside him. But throughout the series, we have seen how Naruto is a kind-hearted boy who has worked hard in protecting his friends and staying true to his word with the goal of someday becoming the next Hokage of the village.

In the beginning, Naruto was part of Team Kakashi, alongside Sasuke Uchiha and Sakura Haruno and as a team, have grown up together taking on missions and also, joining with other teams of Team Konoha as well as other villages in taking on other major missions as well.

But now years have passed since those earlier years of Team Kakashi and Naruto and his friends are much older and his teammate Sasuke has left the village to pursue his brother Itachi for revenge of killing everyone of the Uchiha clan but worst of all, Sasuke is in search of the traitor of the Konoha village, the evil Orochimaru, in order to obtain more power.

During Naruto’s last confrontation with Sasuke, it appears that a black evil curse has consumed him. But as a promise to his teammate Sakura, Naruto will do what it takes to bring Sasuke back despite whether or not Sasuke has become evil.

Now, Sasuke along with his new team featuring team captain Yamato, Sakura and a ninja named Sai (an emotionless young ninja who was hired by the Black Ops leader Danzo to spy on Naruto) are now on a mission to investigate the Akatsuki criminal organization led by its founder Madara Uchiha who have been doing all they can to capture all tailed-beasts including Naruto’s nine-tailed demon fox.

In Japan, a total of 56 volumes have been printed so far (as of June 2011) and in the US, the 51st volume has now been released.

In the last volume, the story takes place after Pain has tried to destroy the Konoha village and Hokage Lady Tsunade uses up all her energy to summon Katsuyu to protect the village but in exchange for the powerful summon, she has now gone into a coma and Danzo of the Black Ops (a rival that Tsunade has never trusted) has now been appointed as sixth hokage in Tsunade’s place.

Raikage has summoned all Ninja leaders to come to Gokage summit but immediately, Sasuke Uchiha has now shown up. Along with his friends, they start attacking those who have attended the summit. Meanwhile, the Konoha ninjas (Naruto’s friends) try to convince Sakura to tell Naruto that she cares about him, so he can stop looking for Sasuke.

In volume 51, Naruto can’t understand why Sakura would tell him that she loved him when she really loves Sasuke but he learns the truth.  She does not want Naruto to fight her battles, she has depended on him for so long that this time, she wants to do the right thing for the Konoha village and that is to take care of Sasuke on her own.

When Naruto and friends find out what happened at the Gokage summit and what Sasuke has done, Naruto starts to realize that the friendship and bond of protecting Sasuke has now changed as many of his friends are planning to sacrifice their life in taking out Sasuke, including the one person that he knows loves Sasuke… Sakura.

Meanwhile, this latest volume shows us Sasuke’s explosive potential as he takes on Danzo in a fight to the death.  Who will win, who will die?

But most of all, what happens when Sakura tries to eliminate Sasuke?  Will she get herself killed or will Naruto and friends stop her in time?

Here is a brief summary of each chapter of “Naruto Volume 51”:

  • Number 474 – A Hokage’s Decision!! – Sai tells Naruto the truth about Sakura and her true actions.
  • Number 475 – Madara’s True Worth!! – Madara takes on Danzo’s men.
  • Number 476 – Sasuke vs. Danzo…!! – It’s a battle to the death, Danzo shows us his true power vs. Sasuke.
  • Number 477 – Do Not Speak of Itachi – Danzo tries to observe why Itachi would go so far to protect his younger brother?
  • Number 478 – Sasuke’s Susano’o – Sasuke shows Danzo his true power by unleashing the beast Susano’o.
  • Number 479 – The Izanagi – Sasuke shows Danzo his true power by using the Izanagi!
  • Number 480 – Sacrifice – Danzo is surprised by how much power Sasuke has that he needs to sacrifice part of himself to continue fighting.
  • Number 481 – The Death of Danzo – The fight concludes.  Meanwhile, we learn a little about Danzo’s youth and his relationship with the Hokage.
  • Number 482 – Just One More Time… – Sakura tries to trick her teammates in order to face Sasuke alone.
  • Number 483 – Master and Student Reunited!! – Kakashi comes to the rescue but will he make it in time to prevent Sasuke from killing Sakura.

What can I say about volume 51 of “Naruto but….”WOW!”

I said the same about volume 50 but this time, I emphasize the awesomeness of this latest volume as not only do we get to see how powerful Sasuke has become, but to see how much he has fell to the darkside.  If anything, a perfect juxtaposition of Sasuke would be of “Star Wars” Anakin Skywalker, a person who wants so much power that he would side with pure evil to do so and his actions in this latest volume are surprising but also a reminder to loyal fans of “Naruto” that the Sasuke Uchiha we knew back then, he’s gone.

Also, for the first time, I think Naruto realizes how evil Sasuke has become and learns that if Sakura is able to kill the person she loves because he has become evil, her sacrifice is for love.  For Naruto, it’s a difficult situation because Sasuke is his true friend but can he do what Sakura has done and kill his best friend for the purpose of doing so because he is a good friend and doesn’t want to see him fall lower towards the dark side?

And of course, the battle between Danzo and Sasuke is surprising, action-packed and was exciting!  Especially the teaser as we get a glimpse of who may be taking on Sasuke next!

So, all I can say is that if you enjoy “Naruto”, this latest manga volume is fantastic and I can’t wait until vol. 52!

Overall, “Naruto” is an awesome manga series and for those who have appreciated the anime series first, will definitely enjoy the manga series as well. This latest volume has a lot of emotion and soul to balance off the action and it takes things back to the original team, the original members and a realization for the first time that they may not be able to rescue Sasuke like they once thought.  Rescuing him now, may have to be by ending his life.  Can Naruto and Sakura do just that?  I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

But once again, another thrilling, action-packed volume of “Naruto” the manga series.  Highly recommended!

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