In the past few chapters we have seen a focus solely on Sasuke and Itachi vs Kabuto, and Naruto chapter 581 is no different in that regard.
This was a kind of interesting chapter in all honesty, the thought of an actual battle was thrown out the window in favour of more talking.
While this type of chapter isn’t to everyone’s taste, I have always been a fan of them, as they usually end up revealing something big or important. What was interesting about this is the way that Sasuke was acting / reacting to what Kabuto had to say, and it actually revealed more about Sasuke’s nature now than I expected. After the recent chapters, I commented on how Sasuke seemed to be back to his old ways where he wasn’t just full of hatred and wanting to destroy everything in the name of revenge, and admittedly I was thinking that maybe he would stay that way after meeting Itachi, but after this it has raised fresh doubts in my mind.
I thought it was pretty awesome how Kabuto was still trying to talk Sasuke in to siding with him, and basically trying to work on the psyche of Sasuke. Kabuto told Sasuke once again about what a liar Itachi is, but also told him in harsher and more realistic words that the Itachi Sasuke sees in front of him now is nothing more than a dead wooden doll, and that he has no reason to feel guilty if he wants to switch over to Kabuto’s side.
Then came my favourite part of the chapter in the form of a short flashback Sasuke has, that appears to have happened shortly after Itachi’s death. A hooded Sasuke is actually in Konoha at a bar, and listens to a conversation a group of Konoha ninja are having about the news of Itachi’s death. They are all glad Itachi was killed, with one of them saying it was fitting punishment that one of Itachi’s comrades was the one to kill him considering Itachi had massacred his own comrades. Another person then says how he wanted to be the one to kill Itachi, and stabs a picture of him with his kunai. A look of pure hatred comes across Sasuke’s face as he listens a bit more to the group, with one of them saying that the village and the country will probably want to give Sasuke a medal and a good wage for killing an S-Rank criminal like that.
Then, a Kunai quickly appears from under Sasuke’s robe and in to his hand. Just as he is about to turn and confront the men, a hand is placed on his shoulder, and it’s revealed to be Tobi. Tobi tells Sasuke That the people he is angry with don’t know the truth, and that the place was too crowded anyway. Sasuke tells Tobi that he will tell them the truth, but Tobi just tells Sasuke to stop it, saying that they would never believe him anyway, and that even if these villagers asked the higher-ups then they would deny everything. Tobi then tells Sasuke that this is what Itachi wanted, he wanted to be labelled a traitor to the village for the sake of everyone in it.
Back in the present, Sasuke tells Kabuto that he is not like him, and that his reasons for wanting to crush the Leaf Village are his own. Kabuto then goes on to say that he knows why Itachi did what he did, saying he is the same, and explains about his childhood and how ever since he was first adopted by a Konoha ninja, he has been working hard for the village and making sacrifices. But despite doing so, all that ended up happening was he became distrusted just because he wasn’t originally from Konoha, and that both he and Itachi ended up getting nothing but shame and dishonour brought upon them in exchange for all they did for the village. Kabuto asks what has the village ever done for either of them, and tells Sasuke about how he too was molded in to a different person because of the way he was treated, and says that since he can understand Sasuke better than anyone else can, he will become his new older brother and stay at his side if Sasuke will come with him.
Itachi responds by telling Sasuke not to listen to Kabuto, saying that all this means is that Kabuto is a better liar than he is. Itachi then admits that Konoha is flawed and does have a darker side to it, but says that ultimately he is still Itachi Uchiha of the Leaf Village. Itachi goes on to say that he can’t criticise Sasuke for what he has done or how he has turned out, but that there is still one thing he has to say to him, though it will have to wait until after they stop Kabuto.
Kabuto begins boasting about how they can’t win and how his Edo Tensei is invincible. Itachi says to Sasuke that while Kabuto is annoying, he does have a point with what he is saying. Itachi then says Kabuto doesn’t know the true strength of the Uchiha, and says that the Uchiha’s eye power can affect a person regardless of their 5 senses, but that in exchange they lose the light from their eyes. Sasuke asks if he means Izanagi which takes Itachi by surprise. Itachi asks Sasuke how he knows about it, and when Sasuke tells him he encountered it during his fight with Danzo, Itachi tells Sasuke that it was impressive that he could survive against it.
Sasuke kind of shrugs off the comment and just asks how to use Izanagi, but Itachi tells him it’s not Izanagi he had in mind, instead it was something else, something that forms a pair with Izanagi. Sasuke replies by saying “Another one?” obviously wondering what it could be, while Itachi explains it’s already been prepared and calls it the ultimate jutsu that shall hold his destiny, with Kabuto now charging straight for them. Itachi blocks Kabuto’s attack with his sword, and reveals the technique is named Izanami. Itachi tells Sasuke that if Izanagi is a jutsu that can change destiny, then Izanami is a technique that can decide it, with the chapter ending as Itachi tells Sasuke to just stay close behind him.
Overall this was a decent enough chapter, though I admit myself I would like to see some more actual fighting in the next chapter. The flashback with Sasuke was awesome and was my favourite part of the chapter as I said earlier, and it was good hearing a bit more about Kabuto as well. The main talking point however is inevitably going to be about the new technique Itachi spoke of, Izanami.
It’s going to be pretty controversial in any case, as the Sharingan and its’ powers get a lot of grief from some fans as it is for the stupid amount of powerups and hax it has, so with yet another new technique I am sure it will make a lot of people unhappy. While I for one am excited and looking forward to seeing just what this technique is and what it does, I will admit that the Sharingan gaining new powers seemingly every time an Uchiha is in trouble is over the top.
Moving away from that briefly, I think this chapter also showed that maybe Sasuke really hasn’t moved on in any way since he first became “crazy”. The past few weeks it appeared as if there had been a change in him since meeting with Itachi, but it felt like Kabuto did a good job of peeling back this veil and underneath revealing that maybe, just maybe, Sasuke doesn’t trust Itachi that much afterall, and that there is a decent chance that once Itachi is out of the picture once more, Sasuke will go back to his goal of crushing Konoha.
So as I said, I am pretty curious about Izanami, especially after Itachi’s words. If whatever it is takes away a user’s light, it must be something pretty amazing like Izanagi. With Itachi saying that Izanami is a technique that can decide someone’s fate it is of course intentionally vague, but I would like to hear what your thoughts on it are and what it may be, so any ideas or theories just leave in the comments box below!
So overall a pretty good chapter in any case, but yet again one that has left me more anxious to see the follow up rather than loving what is already released.