Shikamaru, Ino and Chouji encounter Asuma, who engages them in battle. Chouji however, has completely lost his will to fight, being unable to hurt his sensei both in the past and the present out of his kindness.
I won’t lie – throughout the series, I’ve always looked at Chouji as some sort of a wimp. Him not displaying much strength and being
fat pleasingly plump didn’t help that, but now that I know his motives, I can say that I’m starting to respect him and his values, the main one being his kindness. He goes so far as to not want to hurt his sensei even after Asuma offends him, and all along, his being scared of war was not out of weakness, but instead of his desire not to hurt anyone. I actually enjoyed the flashbacks to pre-Shippuden we got this time, and we got to see some of the inner strength that the support characters have. Though I must disagree with Chouji being stronger than anyone – Naruto and his plot armour trumps that for sure.
That said, Chouji pulled out his butterfly wings far too fast after regaining his resolve. And without his
drugs Akimichi pills too, and while sustaining a Baika no Jutsu – man, that was quick. Like all the other battles with past major characters in the show, things were ended with one punch, which did disappoint a little. For the Ino-Shika-Cho trio, actually fighting Asuma has to be one of the hardest things they’ve come across, because we’ve seen the bonds they’ve had with their sensei and we’ve seen how they’ve lost those bonds once already. It’s like asking Naruto and Sakura to fight a Kakashi that’s trying to actually kill them, after they’ve already seen him die once.
Still, the ending (with the trench knife) was symbolic with everything that both Team 10 and Asuma stands for, with Team 10 fully surpassing their sensei and completing their signature formation. If there’s anything good about the war, it’s that encountering people from your past allows you to really test your strength and move forward.
- Tenten, I think you really should put that fan down…
- That exploding ash cloud was brutal. Seriously, I really wouldn’t want to die like that.
- If you haven’t been reading the manga, I strongly suggest you start doing so. Epic happenings are occurring!