It's taken long enough, but I'm finally seeing some promise for this battle. This sets a better example of what this clash should have been from the beginning. Naruto getting power boosts from the varying Tailed Beasts he holds to counter or press his advantage against Kaguya. I just don't know if we really needed two full page panels to show Naruto has made a lot of clones. They both looked great, but it felt a tad excessive.
A touch that I particularly enjoyed was when Kaguya is tired of playing defensively and really goes out for blood. Getting to see more of her abilities is far preferred over just telling me she's strong. It also created some risk that the hero might have been taken out. I don't even care how unlikely it may appear. It at least makes me question what happens and wonder how the hero survives. That's a good place to be as a reader.
Kishimoto seems to finally be making some kind of attempt to explain why the god-level Kaguya hasn't been trying to kill Naruto or Sasuke this whole time. All while she's known they possess the one technique that could seal and ultimately defeat her millennium long plan for revival. She seems intent on absorbing their chakra, but it's never explained why she needs their particular chakra so badly. I know they're pretty powerful at this point, but what makes them that special? Are they cherry flavored...or something? She has the entire world's population to absorb. I don't see how one or two less would make a difference.
You can't tell me it's because she needs all the power of the Tailed Beasts he holds or the Infinite Tsukuyomi won't hold, because by the end of the chapter she's completely willing to kill him and forsake that power. If she was so sure that she killed off the original Naruto, then why return to the ice world when Sasuke was in the intermediate dimension she was already in? More so when it's revealed she loses huge levels of chakra when changing time-space. I admit that it makes for a pretty cool reveal at the end, but you also undermine the tension of the possible death of the protagonist within the same chapter.
I was incredibly close to giving this chapter a 4 out of 5. The action that we got and the quality in the art were certainly worth it. It's just the writing that I'm finding questionable. The creator has been doing a pretty poor job with trying to give the reader a reason for why Naruto and Sasuke are so needed that the antagonist is willing to risk total defeat. It all just leads me to believe it's due to bad planning on Kishimoto's part. That becomes more evident when Sakura went from having no chakra to heal Naruto to suddenly having enough to form the 100 Healings mark in what must have been thirty minutes to an hour.
This was still far more enjoyable a read than I've experienced with this series in an unfortunately long time. I have my fingers crossed for a repeat of something similar to this or better next week.
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