Saying Goodbye To An Anime Classic: Naruto!

We are making a big change today and I am introducing to you my first anime post, don’t worry I’ll continue writing my usual content. This is a one time occasion that I simply cannot miss and this might be only anime post ever! Anime fans enjoy, non anime fans, well come back when I have another post published 🙂

Today is a big day in the world of anime because one of the top three Shonen animes has already ended. Naruto is considered a classic among the anime community, many fans have been watching this anime for years and some began recently. I personally began watching it in 2005, so it’s been such a long ride for me because this is the only anime show I continued following. Now that it has ended, I will be saying goodbye to my anime days for good. Some people say that it’s silly to do that, but in my heart I love the old-school animes. For example, Sailor Moon, Pokemon, FullMetal Alchemist, Inuyasha and the list goes on and on. The newer anime shows I’ve checked out are not to my liking, old school anime holds a special place in my heart.

So as you can tell already this will be a very different post from my usual ones, this post is mainly geared towards the Naruto fandom. You can think of this as my tribute to this anime, so let’s begin!

 

Volume 1 -1999.

Final Volume – 2014.
I’ve been an anime watcher since I was 5 years old, the first anime I ever watched was called “Hana No Ko Lun Lun” also known as Lun Lun: The Flower Angel. That’s when I fell in love with anime and its art style, to me the anime art style seemed so graceful and pretty. Since then I have watched a lot of anime, but in 2008 I stopped because I was starting university. I wanted to focus on school and eventually I started to lose interest in watching anime, except for one and that is Naruto. I began watching Naruto at the beginning of 2005, I discovered it on a Canadian channel called YTV. YTV usually showed a lot of anime shows on Friday nights, so before it was time to watch my 10pm show, InuYasha, I would watch some of the other shows. That’s when I stumbled upon Naruto and I instantly liked it, being the hopeless romantic that I am, I started watching it because  I wanted to see two characters as a couple. Later on, I began liking the other aspects of the show, for example the suspense, the interesting characters that were introduced and the action. I was slowly sucked into this story and I couldn’t stop watching it, however today the series has officially come to end. For those of you who are not familiar with the plot, here is a brief summary.

Naruto was released on September 21, 1999, it’s been a long ride for this series with a growing Japanese and international audience. The story begins in the Konoha (Leaf) village when one day it is attacked by a Nine-Tailed Fox. The Konoha village had many victims, in order to stop the beast, the Fourth Hokage sealed him into his newborn son, Naruto Uzumaki. In result of this the Fourth Hokage dies, after the beast was sealed, Naruto spend most of his childhood in isolation and ridicule by the Konoha community. Many of the villagers thought of Naruto as threat because he had the Nine-Tailed fox sealed in him. That made Naruto feel very lonely and depressed, so in order to be recognized at all, he began acting like a trouble maker. Naruto is not aware that he has a beast sealed inside of him because the Third Hokage forbids anyone of mentioning this to him. In the Naruto series the world is known as the shinobi world or also known as, ninja. Naruto attends a ninja school, later everyone in the school have to join a three member teams. Naruto joins a team with Sakura, Sasuke and Kakashi sensei (their teacher). From that point on the story begins to unfold slowly and so plot twists are introduced. If I had to pick favorite moments from the entire series, they would be this:

  1. The Chunin Exams.
  2. The Final Naruto and Sasuke Battle.
  3. The Search For Tsunade Arc.

Naruto fans may be surprised that I left out the Pain Arc, it was great, but these were my favorite ones. From this point on in this post I will be mentioning lots of spoilers, so if you have not watched the series and you are planning to watch it, then do not read any further!

 

When I read the “5 weeks left till the final chapter” I was quite shocked to suddenly have a deadline. I’ve watched the show for 10 years, when you keep up with a show for that long, you end up becoming attached to the story and the characters. We all knew that Naruto will end with the final Sasuke and Naruto fight, that was a given. There was no other way to end the series, the exciting aspect of this fight was to see how much their fighting skills improved. We’ve seen that during the Kaguya battle, but it’s a whole another story when they fight each other. In my opinion, they seemed like equals in this fight, so much that they even lost their arms while attacking one another. That moment when they woke up and Sasuke began to talk and show his emotions was a moment I’ve been waiting. He is by far my favorite character from the series and there have been many times when I’ve hated him. That specific time was when he left the village, because of that I stopped watching the show for two years. I was pissed off with his selfish decision, but the day he decide to come and help out during the war, felt great and I started following the series again. Back to the final fight though, I was thrilled to see him finally smile and talk about his feelings. He was living in the darkness for so long and now he is free, thanks to Naruto who never gave up on him.

The final two chapters of the series were icing on the cake for me, since the beginning of Naruto I was imagining the perfect ending to the series. Masashi Kishimoto delivered the ending I’ve always wanted, Sasuke and Sakura are finally together, the shinobi world is peaceful and Naruto is the Seventh Hokage. That’s precisely what I wanted, I’ve got to admit I almost gave up on Sasuke and Sakura being together, but part of me continued to hold on to the idea that it will happen. Another thing I was waiting for in this manga ever since Sasuke left the village was his apology to Sakura and he finally apologized. I’ve got to say this is the best character development I’ve seen in any animated series that I’ve watched. He took responsibility for his actions and words, Sakura was happy and Naruto was happy for both of them. I was also pleasantly surprised when Sasuke did the forehead tap on Sakura, that was emotional because this was what Itachi used to do and now he will too. There were things in the final chapter that did not surprise me, for example Kakashi becoming the Sixth Hokage and Sasuke leaving the village (this time not because of bad reasons). Sasuke leaving the village was to be expected, I imagine he would somehow try to make up for his wrong doings from the past. The question is how, I guess the final Naruto movie will answer our questions. Chapter 699 ended beautifully with Sasuke receiving his Konoha Leaf head protector, that was amazing and nostalgic. Sasuke’s monologue throughout the chapter was so moving, I am proud of this character.

Now moving on to chapter 700, we follow the story years later when the characters are adults with children. Apparently, Naruto and Hinata got together and had two children, same thing with Sasuke and Sakura. Wow, well that was so unexpected, first of all when did Naruto start loving Hinata? We all know he was crazy about Sakura, now that’s what I call a crazy plot twist. Naruto’s son is just like his father when his younger a little trouble maker trying to be noticed by his dad. Sasuke’s daughter reminds me of him a lot, but also of Sakura as well. She is portrayed as a little genius, Shikamaru’s son is an exact replica of him when he was younger. This entire chapter got me excited for the new generation and how it will surpass the old one. If you want to know more about that then you are in luck because a Part III mini series will be released in Spring 2015. So I guess Naruto’s story is not quite over, now the children will continue the rest of the story.

So with that it is time to say farewell to an anime show that made smile, cry, gave me comfort when I was going through hard times in my life. As cheesy as this might sound, Naruto holds a special place in my heart and I’ll miss it. However, all good things come to an end and it is time for this chapter to be closed. A lot of people ridicule anime and call it childish but I have to disagree with that statement. This show has a lot of tragedy and drama, but it also tries to teach its audience some powerful lessons:

  1. Believe in yourself.
  2. Chase your dreams no matter what people tell you.
  3. Work hard to achieve anything in life.
  4. Don’t give up and keep trying no matter how hard things become.
  5. True friends will always be there for you.
  6. Learn from the past and make a better future.

If Masashi Kishimoto finds this post and reads it, thank you for writing a story that was so captivating and powerful. Thank you for the amazing 10 years!

Naruto 700: Uzumaki Naruto!! at MangaFox.me

Now I will leave you with my favorite Naruto songs! Enjoy and I also want to add, wow this was my first anime post. Wooo 🙂

…and finally, one of my favorite openings!

See you soon with a photography post 🙂 Stay tuned.

 

 

 

 

 

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Friday Funday! Top 10 Disney Songs.

Hello everyone,

As promised, here is part 2 of my Disney post and today I will share you my favorite Disney songs.

Let’s get started.

10. The Jungle Book – Bare Necessities

I love this song because it puts me in bright and happy mood, this song was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original song in 1967.

9.. Tale As Old As Time – Beauty and The Beast

I love ballad songs and this is the perfect ballad song for me, Celine Dion and Peabo Bryson vocals suit the song so well. The song won an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for Best Original Song and Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media and Best Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals.

8. Mulan – Reflection

If I had to use one word to describe this song it is beautiful. I love it not only because of the melody and rhythm, but also because of its amazing lyrics. Staying true to yourself and not pretending to be someone else is a beautiful and inspiring message that this song conveys. I love the movie version of this song, as well as the Christina Aguilera version, they both are powerful and inspiring, the song was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Original Song.

7. Strangers Like Me – Tarzan

This is another Disney movie soundtrack that impressed me and I love Phil Collins’s song contributions to this movie. However, the song that I love the most is “Strangers Like Me”, the guitar tune in this song is what won me over.

6. Under The Sea – Little Mermaid

I went to an aquarium in my city a few months ago and the entire the time, this song was playing in my head, lol. For me, this is the best song from The Little Mermaid, it won an Academy Award & Golden Globe award for Best Original Song and a Grammy Award for Best Song Written Specifically for a Motion Picture or for Television and Best Recording for Children.

5. Let It Go – Frozen

Once again, here is a more recent Disney song and I love this one because of its powerful vocals. The song won an Academy Award for Best Original song.

4. Wish Upon A Star – Pinocchio

This song with a gentle melody is fitting for this wonderful Disney story, I remember when I was a child and I listened to the song, I felt very relaxed. The song won an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1940.

3. A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes – Cinderella

This song is part of my top 10 favorites because I absolutely love the message and lyrics. The message is “never stop dreaming”, I love how Disney finds a way to inspire young people with their movies and songs.

2. Aladdin – Prince Ali

Of course there will be an Aladdin song on this list, but I was torn between Prince Ali and Friend Like Me. However, I kept going back to Prince Ali and I absolutely love it. Robin Williams did an amazing job singing the song, but then again I do not expect anything less from someone as great as him.

1. Circle of Life – Lion King

Surprise, surprise, actually this should not be a surprise to you because as I said in my last Disney post, The Lion King is the number one Disney movie for me. The opening sequence of the movie seems powerful and not only because of the animation, but the song somehow makes it seem complete. The entire soundtrack is perfection, but this song stood out to me the most. The song was composed by Elton and the lyrics were written by John Rice, the song was performed by Carmen Twillie and Lebo M.

Let me know in the comments box below which is your favorite Disney song, I’m curious to know 🙂

See you tomorrow with the Divergent movie review!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Music Monday! Week 47.

Hello everyone,

Welcome back to Music Monday, today I will be sharing a more recent music video from the Divergent soundtrack. The music video I am going to share is “Beating Heart” by Elle Goulding. Later on this week, I will be writing a Divergent movie review and share with you my thoughts about the movie.

Alright, while I was watching the movie and this song started to play, I was immediately obsessed, I see myself hitting the replay button for weeks. Elle’s vocals are captivating throughout the song and for me it captures the mood of the first movie, perfectly. The music video is quite interesting as well, the music video begins with Elle sitting in a dark room where she drinks a serum and undergoes a simulation. I think idea of Elle pretending to be Tris in the music video is unique and interesting, I actually think it was a great idea because it is something different. Throughout the video, clips from the movie are shown as well as Elle walking around in a foggy forest. Towards the end of the video Elle reunited with a man, since Elle is pretending to be Tris, I assume the man is pretending to be  Tobias, they hug and then Elle wakes up again in the dark room.

I hope you enjoy it and stay tuned for the Divergent movie review post 🙂

See you soon!

p.s. On Friday I mentioned in my one year anniversary post that I am working on a special video project, however I have been having major technical difficulties. I am trying to figure it out, but it might take a while, please be patient and look forward to it. I promise to work as fast as I can 🙂

Friday Funday! Divervent Trilogy: “Allegiant” Book Review – CAUTION (SPOILERS)

Hello everyone,

Welcome back to Friday Funday, today’s post is for all the book lovers out there and the book I will be reviewing is “Allegiant” by Veronica Roth. “Allegiant” is part of the new highly popular book trilogy “Divergent”.

I discovered the book series last Spring, when I was trying to find a book series similar to the Hunger Games. I was instantly addicted to the “Divergent” series because I read the first two books in two days. I would literally stay up until 4am reading the books, I simply could not put them down. The second book “Insugent” ended with a huge cliff hanger and I had to wait for the third book since May 2012. I was thrilled to see the book at Indigo last month, I read the book in a week and it left me feeling emotional. The ending was unexpected, so I definitely was not prepared for what was to come.

I will begin my book review now, but before I start, please do NOT read this post if you have not read the book. This will be a post will be full of spoilers and I will be revealing the big ending of the book. If you have not read it and do not want it to be spoiled for you, please do not read any further. For those of you who have read the book, you may proceed and read the review.

Enjoy.

“Allegiant” is the third installment of the dystopian trilogy, “Divergent” written by Veronica Roth. The story takes place in dystopian Chicago, where society is divided into four factions: Abnegation (the selfless); Amity (the peacemakers); Candor (the honest); Dauntless (the brave); and Erudite (the intelligent). On a specific day of the year, sixteen year olds have to take an aptitude test, which will determine if they are compatible with another faction. After they receive their results, they must decide whether to stay with their faction or abandon it for another one. In most cases, when the choice is made to leave a faction, the people of that faction consider it betrayal and there is no going back. The main character of the book is Beatrice Prior (Tris), who is born in the Abnegation faction, when she takes the test she find out that she is a Divergent. Meaning, she is compatible with more than one faction and it is very important to keep it a secret because Divergents are in danger of being executed. On the day of the Choosing Ceremony, Beatrice decided to pick Dauntless and that is when her difficult journey begins.

“Allegiant” picks up right from where “Insurgent” left us and that was finding out that the city of Chicago is actually put under an experiment to see if society will function better with factions. It is also revealed that Divergents are not a threat and there is no need to kill them, instead there are considered to be genetically pure individuals who can bring balance to society. Tobias’s mother is not interested in finding out what is beyond the fence, so she decides that everyone will live as factionless. Drastic changes occurred after finding out the truth, faction colors did not exist anymore, Dauntless were disarmed and traitors who worked with Jeaninne Matthews were sentenced to death. However, Tori and Cara form the Allegiant group, a rebellion group who wants to leave the city and discover the outside world. Yet again, Tris has to make a decision about what to do. In the end, she decides to leave with Tobias, Cara, Tori, Christina, Uriah, Peter and Caleb. Despite Caleb’s betrayal, even though she still feels bitter about him working Jeannine Matthews, Tris asks Tobias to save Caleb from his scheduled execution.

This final book of the “Divergent” series is full of plot-twists and many revelations, it had me sitting at the edge of my seat wondering what will happen next. However, I felt like the story was rushed as soon as everyone reached the outside world, the explanations of the different serums, political issues and science were very lengthily. However, I did enjoy the development of the characters, I felt like I knew them well. The book definitely kept me guessing what will happen next and what surprised me the most if finding out Tris’s mother is actually from the outside world. I also enjoyed the part of the book where Tris got the opportunity to find out more about her mother’s past.

My favorite part of the book was the Allegiant group escape, it was suspenseful. I also enjoyed the part where everyone finally begins to explore the outside world and they realize there is a lot more out there. At that part of the book, I felt like I was on a journey with the characters. In my opinion, this part was written well and I also enjoyed Veronica’s choice to have two POVs. We already know what Tris is thinking, so it was interesting to get glimpse of Tobias’s mind.

Now getting to the ending of the book which was probably one of the most tense moments for me. When Tris decided to take Caleb’s place and go into the lab to steal the death serum, this is when I started to have a bad feeling. The moment Tris managed to steal the death serum, I truly thought she would survive, but when she got shot and died, I was speechless. I don’t think I’ve ever felt so disappointed and upset with an author before, the ending was a utter shock for me. It took me a few days to make my peace with the ending, but I finally did. Although, I would have liked to see Tris alive, to a certain extent I understand Roth’s point. This story is about making the right choices, being brave and selfless. All of these aspects were shown throughout the book, Tris decided to be selfless and brave by sacrificing herself, Evelyn choosing her son over power and Tobias accepting responsibility for Uriah’s death without making excuses about his involvement in the explosion. The end of the book shows Tobias two years after Tris’s death, trying to move on and heal with the help of the people who are close to him. The biggest lesson in the final book is that life can damage people, but we can get back on our feet and be healed.

Overall I enjoyed the book, I thought it was a well written book and many aspects were explained well, however I would’ve liked less serum and science talk. I still dislike the ending of the book, but I admire Veronica Roth’s risk to write such an ending.

Now I will end this book review post with the official “Divergent” trailer. If you have read the book, let me know what you liked and disliked about it and if you enjoyed this post let me know if you want to see more book reviews.

See you soon!