[Daily Analysis Column] Why Naruto is the Perfect Hero? (Section 2)
This is not a fanboy analysis. I have tried to consider the subject of the study from objective and unbiased points of view. However, any objection, opposition and disagreement is welcome.
Well, considering that this analysis is to some extent long, I divide it into 3 Sections so that you guys are not bored reading it and also can read it more critically without any bother.
The "rivalry" between Naruto and Sasuke now is a difference in philosophy.
Sasuke made a choice to pursue power through hate and power-ups ("hax" if you will through absorptions, curse seal, blood bargain sharingan-upgrades etc).
Naruto is pursuing strength through relationships and hard work (denying the 9 tails and slowly and steadily gaining his own power). Naruto's philosophy is that love is stronger than hate and that bonds give more strength than loneliness and despair, and that friendship is worth fighting for.
People make fun of Naruto and wonder why he doesn't give up on Sasuke. Aside from the quest being central to his character, his philosophy, his promise of a lifetime, and his "way of the ninja", Naruto MUST believe that Sasuke is worth it as a human being, that there is a "good" Sasuke beneath the facade we see now that is worth fighting for, even if Sasuke himself has forgotten it. I wish I had friends that cared that much, because I think most people abandon their friends when they go through trials much less severe than what Sasuke is going through.
At any rate, it can't be denied that Naruto's growth IS slow (but steady) while Sasuke's is blazing. But that fits with everything that the manga has stood for to date. Gifted people progress faster and more easily. Gifted people make life seem unfair, but it's also true (yes in real life as well) that anybody can compete (and win against) a genius. Is it ALSO true that the genius and the competitor can be friends? This is a theme.
It is important to understand that not all battles are won by power alone (or stats). Weapons and abilities lose their effectiveness in ineffective hands. Character has a lot to do with it. So do conditions. So do motives. When stacking Naruto and Sasuke side by side, which do you think is the stronger person? I don't mean which can throw the biggest punch. That isn't real strength.
A lot of people are hating on Sasuke right now. And then they say that Kishimoto is developing him badly. I disagree. You're supposed to see Sasuke as, at the very least, cold and unbalanced. He is has made himself cold to avoid feeling pain, which has stunted his growth and made him childish as well. He has verbally SAID he is stuck in the past with all he has lost; and he is relying on his gifts and vengeance to make him powerful. Not that Sasuke doesn't also work hard, but his inner foundation is weak and crumbling.
Meanwhile, Naruto is full of vigor and fight, gaining allies by the dozens, and gradually maturing into someone who is starting to see the bigger picture--not just his friendship with Sasuke, but the meaning of friendship in general, and the problems the entire Shinobi world faces for being considered "tools".
And Naruto has something that no one else has. And it is because of this thing that he will be able to become Hokage greater than all previous Hokage.
End of Section 2