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Naruto or Naruto Shippuden?

Discussion in 'Other Fandoms Discussion' started by RottedKarma, Jun 28, 2017.

  1. RottedKarma

    RottedKarma Squib

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    Which do you prefer personally? Which do you think is better in terms of plot, characters, fights and pacing?
     
  2. pbluekan

    pbluekan Seventh Year DLP Supporter

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    I enjoyed both up until a certain point. I only watched the Anime, but that is besides the point.

    For the original series, it was just fun to watch, and the plotline was fairly straightforward.
    For shippuden, I enjoyed the slightly more grown up feeling to it, and they seemed to address a few more interesting character issues. However, they took a fun plot and an interesting world and turned it to shit with overpowered characters and nonsensical bullshit.

    I'm not really a fan of anime as it is though. I watched a bit way back in highschool, but really only ever got through deathnote, FMA, and Naruto. After that, I just lost interest besides the occasional rewatch of FMA. I only watched shippuden because I wanted to see how it ended. I was disappointed.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2017
  3. Nemrut

    Nemrut The Black Mage Prestige

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    Naruto. Shippuden introduces a lot of cool and interesting elements and knowledge on the setting and characters which are important for fanfics but in terms of story telling and interest, yeah, pre-time skip Naruto all the way. Mostly because it also had the audacity to give the limelight to the secondary characters and allowed them to shine in their own battles. Characters who were, at least to me, more interesting than the main characters.

    That kinda stopped for the most in Shippuden, with the one exception being Shikamaru at times. The rest just kinda got delegated to the backseat in most of the fights. Don't remember who said it but I read a post a few years ago where it was said that had the get Gaara back from Akatsuki thing had happened before the time skip, the focus during that would have been on Temari and exploring her characters, whereas in Shippuden the focus was once more on Naruto and Temari didn't really get anything interesting to do. Stuff like that is prevalent throughout Shippuden. Like how for the Asuma revenge thing the focus are on Shikamaru and Naruto, with Naruto taking over due to his big technique, making Ino and Chouji almost obsolete, whereas this was a great opportunity to give more insight into them as well.

    It just sucks that so many interesting characters just kinda stopped mattering.

    Then there is the scope of the powers. Early on, the fights were a lot more interesting and fun due to their small scale, where strategy and the unique gimmicks and techniques and how the characters used them made those a lot of fun. As Shippuden progressed though, the battles became more and more DBZ-like and that robbed a lot of their entertainment value to me. Also loops back to the side character stuff as Naruto and Sasuke just got so much stronger than the other characters couldn't really matter anymore even if Kishimoto wanted at that point, since they were still strictly street level fighters and Naruto and Sasuke could summon zords and shoot huge energy attacks. Not to say that there aren't any cool fights in Shippuden, there are more early on (Jiraya vs Pein, for example) but less and less as the manga progressed.

    During the chunin exam arc and the get Sasuke back arc, the fights were probably the best in the series to me. To get introduced to all kinds of cool shit the rookies can do was a ton of fun. Sure, you have stuff like Deidara vs Gaara that's still interesting but honestly, can't remember much from the war against zetsu or even all the final fight things.

    Couple that with villains getting less and less interesting as time went on and yeah.

    So yeah, to each their own but to me, early Naruto was where it was at its best. Somewhere in the middle of Shippuden the manga took a steep dive in quality and never really resurfaced but Shippuden was the beginning of the end, really.
     
  4. RottedKarma

    RottedKarma Squib

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    Well I suppose you wouldn't be a fan of DBZ then.
    Similar to Jiraiya vs Pein (two high-level shinobi fighting to the death), I particularly enjoyed the first battle between Kakashi and Zabuza with all the clever little twists many Shippuden battles seem to lack.
    Though I never understood how Kakashi knew they were in danger by just seeing a rabbit with the wrong coat. Best guess is that it put him on guard allowing him to sense Zabuza.
     
  5. The Pro

    The Pro Seventh Year

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    Kakashi made a deduction based on the rabbit's coat.

    Naruto is better than Shippuden all the way. Naruto introduced unique characters, each with their own story and characterization. The plot, characters, fights and pacing were all better in Naruto. Due to the more limited scope, Naruto spent more time on development rather than flashy, explosive and destructive fights.

    Some aspects of Shippuden were cool, don't get me wrong. There were some fights that were awesome, like Jiraiya vs Nagato, Kakashi vs Obito, Gaara vs Deidara and Sasuke vs Deidara. As it progressed though, emphasis shifted from the tactics used in the fights to how explosive and flashy the fights were. The characters evolved from ninja to become gods too. In short, Shippuden became less and less about ninja and more about monsters, much like DBZ (and I don't mean that favourably).

    Shippuden's plot was also muddled immensely. Kishimoto got it right with Naruto, but he blundered with Shippuden. The plot was driven by who could create the biggest explosion rather than character development. And that's what made it flop.

    Another massive issue was pacing. The pacing was seriously off for the entirety of Shippuden. The plot eventually became so entangled that the pacing was forgotten entirely just to resolve the plot-related issues. Initially, I liked the pacing. The relatively swift conflict with Akatsuki was engrossing. But then the pacing became a trundling mess bogged down by the need to intersperse flashbacks carelessly just to explain things.

    Hell, compare Naruto and Sasuke. The protagonist progressed at an alarmingly slow rate, while his antithesis progressed at an incredible rate. Naruto returned from the training trip with only a bigger Rasengan as the most notable improvement. In contrast, Sasuke took up swordsmanship, pioneered many new jutsu, improved his tactics and all around improved across the board. The difference was so great Kishimoto pulled a Deus ex Machina with the Kage Bunshin's memory ability. That was complete bullshit.

    And then there's the character development. Character development was sacrificed and in so doing the characters themselves became uninteresting and generic. Characters like Ino, Choji and Gaara who were very intriguing in Naruto became generic background shadows in Shippuden. It was a travesty.

    So there's the crux of the issue. Too many Deus ex Machina plot devices (Mangekyo Sharingan, Sage Mode, Rinnegan, etc), muddled plot, ruined pacing, fucked characters and generally awful storytelling. Naruto is superior to Shippuden in every way.
     
  6. CheddarTrek

    CheddarTrek Set Phasers to Melt Moderator DLP Supporter

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    My favorite arc of the entire series is... Wave.

    Wait, what?

    Wave is the only really 'traditional' mission that I can remember happening outside of filler (and fuck filler). The world-building prior to Wave was solid and interesting, and then we have our primary heroes set off. A sensei and his three students. They go on a mission which quickly gets out of hand, then return to Konoha and an interesting cast of secondary characters.

    ...and then they are entered into an exam, Sasuke leaves, shit goes pear-shaped, timeskip, then then Naruto is a badass and it's his story specifically and everything else takes a backseat.

    The world building and secondary characters are all phenomenal. And I think this is why I like Dreaming of Sunshine so much (and yes, sometimes I do like it genuinely more than canon). Because it takes canon and we get more missions that feel like Wave (even if they're based on filler) but that still feel applicable to the overall plot (unlike filler) either because of characterization or background plot elements.

    So yeah. I didn't dislike things after the timeskip - it was nice to see Naruto able to walk the walk instead of just talk the talk - but it's everything up through, say... Tsunade becoming Hokage and the Battle at the End (?) that kept my attention.

    The Sasuke centric bits of the later manga though I did actively dislike in some cases. Not to mention how (as others mentioned) the fights became less interesting as literal power levels (as opposed to skill based combat) came into play. The Rinnegan and Mangekyo also took it too far - I had no problem with the standard Sharingan being able to track at rapid speeds and copy jutsu. Moving beyond that made it less of a cool ability and more of a cheat, which was partly the point but it's also beside the point. The same is true for the Jinchuuriki - it's great that it was a power boost and that working with Kurama made it extra great, but it took things beyond cool and into ridiculous by the end.
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2017
  7. knight504

    knight504 The Chosen One

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    You are not alone, friend.
     
  8. The Pro

    The Pro Seventh Year

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    This about sums it up.
     
  9. Pure Infinity

    Pure Infinity High Inquisitor

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    I'm going to be a voice of dissent here and say that I didn't feel there was a dip in quality after the time skip, or after Wave, or ever. Ignoring filler (which I mostly skipped once it reached Shippuden) I think the quality was fairly consistent throughout.

    I'll respond quickly to some of the points that have shown up in this thread.

    The fighting is bad and like DBZ
    I'll admit that a lot of the later fight scenes were kind of meh, with obvious exception to the Naruto vs. Sasuke battle at the end. They weren't bad because they were like DBZ though - DBZ fights are awesome. Kishimoto just didn't do it well. Having energy balls and large scale fights doesn't make you like DBZ. To even pretend that's the case is like comparing the Dresden Files to Harry Potter because they both have wizards named Harry.

    The final fight was masterfully adapted - to the point where I honestly think the anime did it way better than the manga. The directing was on point, the animation was beautiful, and the emotions in the scene were conveyed in a heartfelt way.

    The main characters were shit, and secondary characters didn't get enough attention
    Anyway, I felt the character arcs were pretty well handled throughout. I don't feel that the attention was overly on Naruto, actually. Even through the end of the series, most of the major characters developed. Shikamaru, Kakashi, Sakura, Hinata, Itachi, Pein, Obito - hell Kishimoto even gave time to the First and Second Hokage... Several characters had arcs and developments, even up until the last 100 chapters. I don't know why people think there was a lack of focus on characters, because attention was clearly paid to characters. So many characters get more interesting after the time skip. Especially Naruto, by the way.

    If anything, I think the series could have been improved with focus on less characters. I never cared about any of Sasuke's teammates, for example - and they never really added much to the story. Probably could have skipped Sasuke getting water guy, Karen, and... Jugou?... and gone right to his fight with Itachi. Which is another example of Shippuden being well handled.

    Pacing was shit
    The pacing did kinda drag during the later parts of the story, but it kinda dragged before the time skip too. I remember the Chuunin Exam and the Sasuke retrieval arcs being particular offenders here. Portions of the Arcs were amazing, but lots of them dragged on pretty heavily. The Forest of Death was great during the fight with Orochimaru, during Sakura's hair cutting moment, and Sasuke's subsequent freak out. But the rest of the forest of death dragged on for what felt like forever, and roughly half of the prelim fights felt incredibly boring. Same with the Sasuke retrieval arc - around half of the fights were too long, and incredibly boring.

    What I'm saying is, the pacing was never that good. It didn't really take much of a nosedive towards the end of the series.


    That said, it's not like I loved it all the way through - I have serious problems with Naruto after the time skip, just as I have problems with Naruto before the time skip. I can understand disliking Shippuden if it lacked something you liked about the story before then, but I don't think the quality dropped all that much overall.

    Also, I'll reiterate, because this is really annoying me, and people have been saying it for the longest goddamn time - DBZ fight scenes are nothing like Naruto fight scenes. That's just stupid. The entire pacing of a DBZ fight scene is different from that of a Naruto fight scene. The two are barely even comparable. And it's not like DBZ was the first series to have large scale fight scenes with energy blasts.
     
  10. Methos

    Methos DA Member

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    If skip the anime fillers, you miss the Eternal genin.

    The further the manga progressed the more I was disappointing, Naruto becoming a cult leader or a messiah was just done in crap way.
    If you believe hard enough it will happen is just a poor message, because it doesn't take into account your actions.

    All our disappointments are seeds for great fanfictions, something Naruto share with HP
     
  11. RottedKarma

    RottedKarma Squib

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    When I refer to the fights being DBZ-like, I mean that they're more focused on winning by throwing powerful attacks and seeing which one is stronger, instead of the more strategy-focused ones in Naruto, a reference to the godlike power levels of DBZ characters. Not necessarily because they both have energy balls.

    It could be that in Naruto, the main cast were mostly genin going up against stronger, more experienced enemies so they had to outwit them. But then they got to become those stronger and more experienced shinobi hence the "DBZ-like" fights.
    Does that sound plausible or am I just pulling shit out of my ass?
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
  12. pbluekan

    pbluekan Seventh Year DLP Supporter

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    Not really, but I watched some of it. DBZ was rediculous, but it was a known thing. They actively used that nonsense to build the stories and characters of the series.

    Naruto tried to be serious in a way DBZ never did, and then ruined a quality setting with shit plotting. Shit plotting caused the rediculously OP characters and the decline of the writing quality of the show.
     
  13. RottedKarma

    RottedKarma Squib

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    I'm curious, how exactly did they use "that nonsense" as a reference for the Naruto series?
     
  14. Pure Infinity

    Pure Infinity High Inquisitor

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    I'm not saying your view of Naruto is wrong - I'm saying your understanding of DBZ is. It's a faulty comparison that people keep making for some reason. Most DBZ fights started with martial arts and slowly ramped up towards battles of pure power - mixing in odd abilities and quirks of the villain in along the way. In the end, most fights weren't about the fighting at all - but about the narrative of the fight. And the fighting itself was never as predictable as strong attack vs. strong attack - no matter what detractors might try to claim.

    Anyway, it's probably best to avoid a derail of this Naruto thread by hammering on this DBZ comparison over and over again. It just really bugs me.
     
  15. RottedKarma

    RottedKarma Squib

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    Alright, fair enough.
    Also, I guess I probably shouldn't be making assumptions on DBZ fights when I've only watched a couple of them. The hammering on the DBZ comparison is now over.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
  16. Andrela

    Andrela Plot Bunny DLP Supporter

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    I like Naruto better because it did not yet have all those ridiculous powerlevels and Uchiha hax abilities.
     
  17. Vincent

    Vincent Death Eater

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    I don't mind the powerlevels or hax Uchiha abilities. Regardless of power level they still more or less acted like shinobi with the exception of Kaguya who was never a ninja to start with. It was more the forced focus on world peace and friendship which irritated me about Shippuden. If Sasuke wants to be Kratos then let him be Kratos.
     
  18. The Pro

    The Pro Seventh Year

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    It's an anime adaptation of a shōnen manga. You should've anticipated those themes from the beginning. Don't believe me? Read this.

    Besides that, the fact that you're irritated by the focus on world peace and friendship means you've missed the whole point of Naruto. Naruto is a story about camaraderie. It's a story about progression of youth in a realistic (it tried, all you detractors) and relatable manner. Sure, it's got fantasy thrown into the mix. Sure, it's got action thrown into the mix.

    But that's all besides the point. At its core, Naruto is about comradeship. Naruto is a character who is designed to personify an idealized human. He possesses admirable character traits. He's forgiving, strong-willed, resilient and tenacious as they come. Sure, he's an irritating asshat on many occasions. But he's like that to make him more of a simpleton to whom the average person can relate and hopefully emulate.

    And besides, Naruto is a shōnen manga, like I said before. Naruto is a literal paradigm of the themes of shōnen manga.

    EDIT: I'm talking about both Naruto Part I and Part II (Shippuden), before anyone asks.
     
    Red
  19. CheddarTrek

    CheddarTrek Set Phasers to Melt Moderator DLP Supporter

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    So, just to clarify... I took the question "Naruto or Shippuuden" to mean before or after timeskip.

    I didn't correlate it directly to the anime. I am more of a manga reader than an anime watcher. I saw a few of my favorite arcs in the anime but overall I probably only saw one out of four episodes.

    As for the power level debate... Naruto was always going to end up the most powerful character, sure. And I wasn't surprised that Sasuke ended up alongside him. But the difference in power between them and a typical shinobi was so vast as to make the other characters cease to matter.

    I think that's partly why some of us are complaining about other characters not getting enough characterization later on.

    By the time Shippuuden gets rolling characters like those in Team 8 have been trivialized. They're left so far behind that characters who used to be on par with the main cast are now just fodder, and they aren't given anything interesting story wise to make up for their inability to be in the vicinity of a fight Naruto is having trouble with.

    It's not that characters started throwing energy attacks around that made it seem like DBZ to some. It's that Naruto and a few others became so wildly powerful in contrast to everyone else that everyone else is a statistic with no ability to affect a fight on that level.

    Dragonball didn't have that problem. Dragonball Z did. At least imo.

    And world peace? I had no problem with the focus on it given that it became a focal point of Naruto's character, and Naruto isn't the sort to give up on something like that. The ending however did feel overly naive - even if there's temporary peace, several villages full of ninja weren't going to get along forever. What was the plan for twenty years down the line?
     
  20. Sou

    Sou Squib

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    Naruto was a good beginning. Introduced basic characters and worldbuilding and it went well. I'm not a fan of Sasuke in chuunin exam, but it wasn't that bad.
    All in all, original Naruto delivered. What was given was pretty alright.

    When it comes to Shippuuden I will separate it into two parts - before Pain invasion and after.
    Before - that's my favourite part of the manga. Akatsuki are really solid, plot is somewhat consistent and interesting and everything just appeal to me. It's not perfect, but there are more good points than bad.

    Pain invasion is really hit and miss. On paper, it seems sound. But really, Rinne Tensei ex machina...

    After invasion the plot becomes inconsistent. Everything seems not well thought of. There are good moments (I liked Itachi, so his story kept me interested), but all in all bad points outweighted good ones. The ending was incredibly shaky. And don't get me stared on "Everybody got married to each other and had kids...".

    Shippuuden had tremendous potential, but it was wasted. The beginning was really good but then it started to go haywire.

    So, Kishimoto may be good at starting the story, but not so on ending...?