So I first came across this argument on some forum last year, and dismissed it as nothing more than an interesting but otherwise unimportant consideration.
Recently, I was re-watching an old Naruto episode, and at the point when sasuke and Naruto first meet after two years (Sasuke has his blade against Naruto’s neck), I suddenly realized what it was that had happened nearly three years ago at the water fall. suddenly this question seemed infused with greater pith than I had originally assigned to it.
So I recently decided to give this topic some serious consideration, and this is what I came up with. As far as Naruto part 1 goes, this was the pinnacle of the Naruto story; for so long we had watched and cheered on as Naruto Uzumaki had overcome great challenges to stand side by side with greater shinobi his age like Neji and rock lee. And even when we saw Naruto emerge victorious against the likes of Gaara and Kabuto, we all recognized them for what they were, interim victories. None of them really mattered, not really, not when compared against Naruto’s true desire, SASUKE.
It didn’t matter how many Gaaras and Zabuzas Naruto would tear his way through to the top; it wouldn’t even matter If he went up against the likes of Orochimaru and Itachi; all we wanted to see as Naruto crazy fans was Sasuke acknowledge Naruto as a worthy colleague (that is a lie, we or at least I wanted to see Sasuke get his ass kicked by Naruto).
SO when it finally arrived at Episode 134, it was the realization of a dream, the battle between Sasuke and Naruto that we had all been waiting for since Episode 1. We watched it with bated breath, with no idea of who would emerge victorious, and after an awesome double episode that showcased Naruto doing everything we had wanted and hoped to see him do-show Sasuke his true power- the victor was decided.
Sasuke had triumphed, and for all those hoping to see a return to the happier days of team 7, we began down a path to a new age of Naruto, one with less comedy and laughter, and more drama, sadness, and clearly moppy Naruto Uzumaki.
So I m going to approach this idea with an open mind, never mind by bias towards Naruto as a character. This was a big moment, the action was awesome, the scenes were intense and the fight was everything we had ever hoped for, for 12 year old shinobi at least.
But why ascribe more importance to it than that; this is a franchise that has spanned more than 400 episodes and chapters, with a myriad of interesting characters, story lines and more than enough plots to keep us all interested for a couple of more years to come.
Since then we have seen more action, more drama, more awe striking battles in shipudden than the entirety of Naruto part one. Heck even the stakes have risen to a whole new level. We have god like shinobi fighting on a whole new scale for targets and prizes greater than the future of an angry and confused 12 year old. SO basically there is no doubt that the world of Naruto was created by a variety of characters and events, all of which had helped build a small facet of the whole.
One single event, especially involving 12 year olds, cannot truly affect the future of the entire series of Naruto. So in asking this question I thought that some misguided individuals where imputing more importance to one incident than could be acceptable.
After all, Naruto is a machine consisting of several very important parts of which Naruto and Sasuke are a part. This is what I thought the first time I came across this topic, and why I couldn’t think about it seriously.
Then I realized something that the creator of this topic had mostly likely determined in creating this topic. This is Naruto and Sasuke we are talking about, and as far as the Naruto series is concerned, that fact changes everything.
Are Naruto and Sasuke the most important characters in the series? When you subtract orochimaru’s obsessive interest in Sasuke, and Naruto’s possession of the nine tails fox, then the answer in NO. That’s what makes Naruto so great; you could spend entire episodes/chapters without laying an eye on these two characters and Naruto would be awesome.
What Naruto and Sasuke are, is the core of the series. If you are not following, then that will sound contradictory, so I will explain it like this. Naruto and Sasuke are the rudders of the ship that is Naruto, their fates, actions and reactions to the events of the Naruto world have an adverse affect on the future of events. Basically their actions always determine he direction that the story will take at any one given point in time. That would make them the nucleus of the Naruto machine. They are that important even without being the most important.
And as such that one battle at the water fall wasn’t merely an important event, it was a turning point for the entire series, one of two or three. When this battle began, the entire series literally stood at a cross road; which ever way the battle went, it would determine not only which direction the series would go, but also how Kishimoto would write things from then on.
So yes, this is truly an important topic worth considering at great lengths.
In tackling the consequences of a different result to this battle, I find myself narrowing it down to three major categories; how it could have affected Naruto, how it could have affected Sasuke, and how different the entire Shinobi world as a whole would have been as a result of Naruto defeating Sasuke.
Now if you have truly been watching Naruto from day one, then this isn’t really a question for you. You will already know that if Naruto had beaten Sasuke, Sasuke would have returned to konoha. If you really know your Naruto, then this seems like a fact to you, and I will agree.
And it would be at this moment that I would dive into what changes I think would have occurred after. And I will get to it. But before that, I believe it is important to ask ourselves WHY? Sure, as Naruto fans we all know that Sasuke losing to Naruto=Sasuke heading back to Konoha. For some of you, that isn’t even a question.
But we really need to ask why? If Sasuke lost to Naruto, why would it lead him to returning to Konoha? That is what I will first try to answer.
First, when we consider Sasuke’s defeat,we can consider only two primary out comes.The first is that Naruto beats Sasuke and he forces him back home. We know this because NAruto said he would defeat Sasuke and break his arms and legs if he had to and drag him back.So SAsuke ends up in Konoha.
The second option is that after losing, Sasuke and Naruto have a long talk and he accepts to return to Konoha. Now that might sound redundant to you,either way he gets to konoha.That’s the same option. NO.
Even if Naruto forced Sasuke back to Konoha, he could just as easily heal up,regain his strength and escape again; better yet Orochimaru himself attacks Konoha and takes Sasuke and either way we get to the same result as current Naruto.
For this scenario, Sasuke was beaten and accepted to return to Konoha.So why would he?
We know two things about Sasuke’s decision to leave Konoha. The first was Naruto. We could say that sasuke was jealous of Naruto. He was Konoha’s avenger, sworn to take the life of his brother for the massacre of his clan. Then he joins team 7 with loser naruto, and then sits back and watches as, before his very eyes, Naruto transforms from helpless child to brave shinobi. He is watching Naruto not only grow but surpass him.
I believe this felt like a threat to his revenge. He was the genius, the sharingan wielder. He was the one searching for a way to defeat the super shinobi Itachi. Not only was he nowhere nearly as strong as itachi, but he stood a chance of losing to the loser Naruto.
Basically Naruto’s growth was like a stamp on his own weakness. Besides the whole bond thing, if he couldn’t beat/kill someone like Naruto, then he wasn’t the avenger that could wield the power to defeat itachi. SO Naruto’s strength vindicated his own weakness. It highlighted it.
So he had to defeat Naruto to prove his own worthiness and maybe even defend his mission, proving to himself that it was still alive and that he still had the opportunity to gain the strength to beat Itachi. Chances are that didn’t make sense, but I am having a hard time expressing that part of Sasuke.
Anyway, secondly was Sasuke’s true reason for leaving. Sasuke was weak. He needed power immediately. He had spent 12 years training in Konoh’a shinobi system and when he fought Itachi, he wasn’t even the ant worthy of his brother’s foot. And even worse, he couldn’t even beat Naruto on the roof top.
So we know that he basically determined that his was a life meant to be lead outside the formal system of ninja. Basically he had tried the normal shinobi thing and that path had failed him. So he turned to a darker path, one that promised true power, true power that as far as he was concerned was devoid in the formal shinobi system. Along this new path he saw it, the image of his dream come closer, enough so that he could grasp it.
This is what Naruto would have probably wanted to convey to Sasuke, that their was another way to achieve his goal rather than the dark path he was about to take. Sasuke wasn’t convinced and probably even saw Naruto as a representation of the very path that he had discarded. He would have seen beating Naruto as vindicating his belief, that in the formal shinobi system was weakness, and no true power.
Chances are in some corner of his mind, Sasuke hoped that Naruto would emerge victorious, that with his own way of the ninja, he would overcome not only Sasuke’s superior skills but the power of the curse mark. And with that victory, Sasuke would have something concrete to believe in as far as following the pure path to power, in the fact that Naruto, a loser, transformed his very existence to achieve skills and power that could beat even his heritage, the sharingan.
These two facts would have swayed Sasuke. In beating him, Naruto would have crushed Sasuke’s treasured and infuriating ego. His own image of his self worth would have crashed down to earth. I also believe his restlessness would have settled, and Sasuke would have taken a long hard look at his ambitions and considered the possibility of a life of revenge that wouldn’t consume him so completely that he would take the first hand offering him support. This would occur after he accepted Naruto’s power and ability as a competent shinobi. This in turn would allow him to consider the possibility of acquiring great power along side Naruto and his philosophies.
Chances are that might not have made sense. I had the idea clearly formed in my head, but putting it into words in a cogent, cohesive manner is proving difficult, so take what you can out of it. Let’s move on to the next point, the consequences to the Naruto world.
I came up with this topic weeks ago, but I am only getting to writing about it now. Why? I am lazy. The first time I considered writing about this topic, it was several dozen pages long in my head. That would take forever to write, and I am one writer that doesn’t like writing anything over a period of several hours or days. I am referring to the whole writing, take a break then write again regime. If I musty write something, I will down and get it done in one sitting, even if it takes several hours; this applies to blogs, chapters or scenes.
So what’s my point? While I was working out how to summarize this (this was for the reader’s benefit by the way, as I have recently discovered that most internet users fall on the lazy side, and can’t stand reading extremely long blogs) I had quite a lot of time to consider the ramifications of Naruto beating Sasuke. I came up with quite a long list spanning the entirety of the Naruto world. But because I don’t want this blog to ran into several pages, I have decided to break it down into three specific areas; I will let you readers fill the rest of the blanks in. That way I save mine and your time.
SO, the first part shouldn’t me the most important, but to a lot of Naruto fans it is. So I will settle this quickly. I believe that this scenario would have settled the whole Naruhina, Narusakura issue. If Naruto is barely competing when sasuke is playing the evil megalomaniac hell bent on Konoha’s down fall, chances are he would be decimated with Sasuke right there, in sakura’s face, day in and day out, fighting along side Naruto to save Konoha.
Chances are, by the time Shippuden rolls through, we would have Tsunade making wedding preparations, while Jiraiya fits Naruto and Hinata for their respective companion roles. In some ways in would suck, in other ways it wouldn’t. Then again that might not even happen, depending on how events play out. Hinata confessed to Naruto during the pain arc.
It is unlikely that she would have had the opportunity to save Naruto with Sasuke around. But even better than the thought of Sasuke’s involvement in the pain arc is the rather awesome image of sakura and Sasuke versus Sasori. Now that would have been a ramble.
Anyway, when you consider parallel scenarios like this, the first thing to jump to mind are the strengths. How strong would the protagonists be after a hectic two year time skip?
I have heard the argument that Naruto would be an ordinary shinobi, going on to replace iruka sensei as some instructor in the academy. The idea here is that Naruto only got stronger because he had to save Sasuke from himself. And that without that motivation, Naruto would be no more than a dog in Sasuke’s shadow. Now what do I say to that?
WRONG. WRONG. WRONG. I envision the very opposite. Think of it this way. Naruto went off for two years to train with jaraiya. And what were the results of that training? He could make a bigger rasengan. He could make an even bigger rasengan. He could make a rasengan with two clones…really what the hell did Naruto learn from Jiraiya? I know you know that the answer is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING?
Before Naruto left with jiraiya, he could rely on the nine tails cloak to help him in battle. What happened after? He was suddenly so bad at controlling the power of the nine tails that he was growing freakin tails. So for all intention and purpose, jiraiya had little to no effect on Naruto’s development.
Some are going to make the Sage mode claim, that with the power Naruto gained much later in Shippuden, he was much better equipped to handle Sasuke. But that doesn’t even begin to make sense. Sasuke had nothing to do with sage mode at all. That was all about Jiraiya. In fact I wager that the pain arc was the very first time in the entire Naruto history that Naruto Uzumaki wasn’t thinking about Sasuke.
Naruto took a page out of Sasuke’s play book. He acquired sage mode for one reason only, and that was revenge. He wanted to kill pain. Chances are if jiraiya had lived a full life or had died after Naruto mastered kyubi mode, he wouldn’t have taught Naruto sage mode. If I am not mistaken jiraiya never made any attempts to teach his student, Minato sage mode, so, yeah, that makes my point.
As for Kyubi mode, the nine tails has been a part of Naruto since he was born. He would have had to deal with it eventually.
Fact is, Naruto began to get stronger when Sasuke came onto team 7. We all watched them during the zabuza arc, training side by side, aiding (unknowingly) each other to achieve greater skills.
With Sasuke around, I see Naruto becoming a shinobi like we have never seen before. Chances are, if Jiraiya did indeed die, he would have mastered sage mode, most likely over a period of several months (pain wouldn’t be invading for a while). Chances are, with Sasuke’s help, he would have truly mastered it, and I don’t ,mean that thing he does with the clones. I can imagine him learning it and taking it to a whole new level, probably even inventing a whole other mode for himself.
The kyubi mode would have come around even earlier, but most likely after Sasuke’s mangyeko developed. I envisage him helping Naruto calm the fox down every time it breaks loose, only for Naruto to have him release control so that he can try again. Basically he would be a much more effective yamato, and chances are the eventual kyubi mode would be something far different than it is now, due to a different training regiment than the one killer bee used.
Better yet though, I can see Naruto mastering actual justus, and by that I mean Naruto actually weaving hand signs to execute whatever wind justus he had mastered. Right now Naruto doesn’t seem to know any hand signs other than summoning.
This would most likely be due to Sasuke’s advice, who would push him to diversify beyond rasengan. Suddenly I am seeing Sasuke teaching Naruto Genjutsu, the basic kind of course. But that would be rather cool, especially since Naruto has massive chakra reserves, which means if he can’t do complex, he can go big, like he does with his clones.
Sasuke would have a similar improvement, but unlike Naruto who I see simply being a better version of what he is right now, Sasuke’s abilities would be completely different. I am reminiscing of the old Naruto where kakashi warned Sasuke that if he gave into the curse seal and orochimaru, he wouldn’t grow and that Naruto would surpass him. I believe that that has come to pass, though not directly.
I like to call Sasuke the hand out shinobi. It doesn’t mean he didn’t have to do some work for it, or that it doesn’t take skill to use, but it kind of feels like every major skill and jutsu Sasuke has was handed down to him.
This Sasuke would eventually master amaterasu and the rest, but I believe it would be long after he had mastered a whole load of other even more amazing jutsus. And we all know that what we love about Naruto is seeing him train and taking something created by someone else and making it better in some unique way. It would be interesting watching Sasuke master amaterasu, and mangyeko with kakashi and Naruto’s help. Who knows what would result, maybe a chidori created with two clones.
The results would be what we all love about naruto, and that is unpredictable. I envisage Sasuke actually fighting and working to create his own skills. Chances are he would discover a second element and develop his own techniques. or he would take his lightning element and develop a technique stronger than chidori.
I can’t even imagine how he would go about mastering mangyeko, but it would be a ride I would be willing to go along. Chances are after Naruto Masters sage mode, he would assist Sasuke in mastering his own snake sage mode.
And after he sees Naruto achieve kyubi mode, he would strive to achieve an equally great power. Seriously this would be an awesome show. Kishimoto would break the long shonen anime motif. Rather than give us a time skip, we would have two years of action packed adventure, free of akatsuki and tailed beasts.
Seriously, there are so many possibilities to this scenario. Chances are Jiraiya wouldn’t die the way he did. Why? Because Sasuke would probably sneak off to face the big bad threatening his friend. And Naruto would follow him to the land of the rain, leading to us to a Sasuke, Naruto pain showdown (and Konan, of course).
If Jiriaiya must die, then maybe they would miss him on his way to Konoha, and while Pain faced off against Jiraiya in the land of fire, Sasuke and Naruto would collide with (dramatic drums) Itachi, the brother that Naruto had helped Sasuke search for all these two years.
And what ever outcome that battle would have, would to lead to a whole host of other challenges. If it doesn’t make sense how Jiraiya would die in Konoha, with all that back up. Well, a lot of things could happen. He could arrive to aid Sasuke and Naruto against Itachi, and accidentally falls to Amaterasu.
Or better yet, Orochimaru could still be around in this scenario. That would be orochimaru (if he chose to capitalize of pain’s attack to make his move) vs pain vs Jiraiya.
Pain could even be secondary to the entire plot. BY the time Naruto and Sasuke return, orochimaru might have killed Jiraiya, re-aiming Naruto’s wrath while Sasuke took on pain with Hinata and sakura as backup.
There are simply so many possibilities that, like I said, it would take too long to write them all down, or even expand on the ones above (if you notice, I am being rather brief).
Tobi and madara would have to concoct a whole new plan to achieve dominion. Chances are that once Danzo became hokage, Naruto and Sasuke, after painstaking resistance and suffering under a couple of weeks of his rule, would leave Konoha, unable to operate under the leadership of such a maniac. They would then choose the lives of…I don’t know if the term ronin ninja exists but you get my drift.
I can imagine the duo taking steps to cripple Orochimaru’s work, and during one raid, ran into karin, suigetsu and that other guy. After Naruto makes short work of them, they lay down their weapons after which Sasuke takes pity on them, and like jiraiya choosing to shelter the three orphans, the dynamic duo decide to accept the trio under their protection.
Along the way, someone makes a suggestions and the group TAKA is born, though with the naruto in the group a better name might make the cut (like the sharingan foxex or something). Following the leading of Yahiko and pain’s akatsuki, they set out as shinobi mercenaries, gathering the down trodden to build a powerful group, led by the flaming flash (with regards to kyubi mode) and the…I can’t find a good title for Sasuke.
How this group would fit into the war is a mystery. Maybe they would aim for tobi and madara while the alliance takes on the zetsus. But chances are they will have to save the world whilst fighting of the raikage and the entire allaince, since Ai would have deemed them a terrorist group or something.
Every time I consider this ‘what if’ notion, I can’t help but think of how awesome it would be. But really, who wouldn’t want to see Naruto and Sasuke on the battle field together, taking on the akatsuki as a whole or something equally grand.
Of course Naruto would have to get over the sakura thing, and sasuke would have to do something as close to forgiving Danzo as he could possibly get. Then again it would be fun to see naruto acceding to Sasuke using taka to take down danzo but trying to keep him under control.
WHO knows? Those two words are what makes anime so great. The possibilities created by anyone show are so expansive that it can make you tremble in excitement just imagining it.
Now I told you a small portion of what I think would happen (and it is already taking forever to finish this topic, so I will wrap this damn post up) I would be intrigued to find out what you think would change as a result of naruto beating sasuke.
Because the only thing that can beat this scenario is one where the fourth never died.
Seriously, tell me what you think, I am curious to see what I haven’t thought of.