Naruto Shippuden Episode 261: To the Beginning
Let’s start this war.
As conflict breaks out among the Allied Shinobi Force members, Gaara presents a war speech to rally and motivate the shinobi under his control. Meanwhile, Anko’s reconnaissance team has picked up the existence of the 100,000 white Zetsu, with the rest of the team going back to relay the info while Anko battles Kabuto, quickly losing to his poisons. The Akatsuki send out their first wave of Edo Tensei corpses, and everyone heads into battle.
Oh, Anko…if only you’d actually managed to somehow take out Kabuto during those few moments – you would have saved the entire Allied Shinobi Force a hell of a lot of trouble. With Kabuto gone, you’d only need to deal with the 100,000 Zetsu and Tobi, which is a lot more manageable than the above, plus all the dead powerful ninja from throughout the entire series. Kabuto’s mention of psychological warfare was smart indeed – if you pit Asuma against Team 10, or Hizashi against any Hyuuga, you’re bound to cause emotional conflict. Dan is Kabuto’s surefire method of taking out Tsunade, and I can bet that Haku and Zabuza are going to meet some of Team Kakashi for sure. The Akatsuki members aren’t exactly slobs either – they’ll have to take care of already powerful ninja, except this time they can’t die.
The situation that was eventually going to turn up with the issue of former enemies suddenly becoming allies was addressed really quickly, but I guess doing it now is better than dealing with it on the battlefield. You can almost guess how the first 3 ninja wars came about, with nearly everyone (except poor Hinata) arguing over which village’s fault some ancient conflict turned out to be. Childish much?
Gaara’s speech was so unbelievably epic, I can definitely see why he was made captain-commander even at that young age. Gaara’s a guy that can relate to everyone on the battlefield – both having personally suffered (and died) at the hands of Akatsuki, and having once been a Jinchuuriki himself and encompassing the hatred and power that drove all the villages to war in the past. He’s cleverly using the “enemy of my enemy is my friend” tactic, as it does actually ring true in this case – and let’s not forget the fact that Kabuto’s gone round touring the world, digging up the dead bodies of every semi-powerful ninja from each village. Result: every shinobi, going gar for Gaara
(see what I did there?)
So next week it officially starts – the Fourth Shinobi World War, which promises to be the ultimate of the ultimate in Naruto arcs so far. I’m glad we gotten out of filler hell, and there’ll be no excuse for random stops in the middle (how they did that for Bleach, I have no idea and don’t particularly want to know).