kasumin: (asbel lhant)
[personal profile] kasumin
As a creature of habit who still follows Naruto, Bleach, and Claymore, on a weekly/monthly basis, I find myself pleasantly surprised at how interesting Naruto and Bleach have gotten lately. Well, Naruto was arguably always interesting, though the whole Ninja World War thing did get dull for awhile. But Bleach was incredibly dull for a few years up until recently.

A lot of the friends I knew back in school have dropped these series ages ago, which makes me sad. I could never quite justify dropping a manga since reading each chapter only takes up about 10 minutes of my team every week. Can't really complain about that. An anime episode takes up twice as much time if you follow it on a weekly basis! I will drop a manga if it gets really bad, though. D. Gray Man is a trainwreck that I still occasionally look back on. Its updates only seem to become fewer and further between as time goes on.

I guess Dragon Ball Z is the first Jump series I got into, but I only watched the anime. Yu-Gi-Oh came after, but again, only watched the anime until I started buying the manga in 2004 or 2005 or so. I still need to read all of it, but I've been lazy about hunting down the other half of the series (I own 18 out of 38 volumes). And Battle City seems way too long. I think it must be at least a third of the series. That's really fricking long!

Bleach really grabbed me in early 2005, and I started reading the manga and watching the anime. I thought Naruto was dumb until I was somehow convinced to marathon 150 episodes of the first anime series during the summer of 2005. I must say, that was one of the best summers of my life. Final Fantasy X, Tales of Symphonia, 150 episodes of Naruto, AND my first Otakon. Ah, good times...

In any case, I fell in love with Naruto and it has since eclipsed Bleach as my favorite currently running manga. I could go on for ages about what I love about it. But my TWO favorite things about Naruto are the following: 1) The main character actually has noticeable development. Naruto starts off as a really annoying, stupid kid. But wow does he mature as the series goes on. He still has his goofy moments, but that's what I love about him. 2) The power structure of the series is very well done. Unlike DBZ which had silly power levels that went so high they stopped counting at the end of the Frieza saga or Bleach's Shikai and Bankai levels (Kubo REALLY wrote himself into a corner there), Naruto has a vast array of different ninja abilities. You've got the three different techniques of ninjutsu, genjutsu, and taijutsu. Then you have the 5 different elements of ninjutsu, as well as the other elements you get when you combine them. And THEN you've got the idea of chakra, which is sort of like power levels, but far more interestingly done. A character can have a crapload of chakra and still get their butt kicked because their opponent was smart about using their own techniques to their advantage.

I can't say Naruto ever gets boring in the way DBZ, Bleach, or Yu Yu Hakusho did. There's always some new crazy ability for someone to have. Or characters can just develop the abilities they already have. Ah, such a great series. That I've never bothered reading fic for, for some reason.

And then there's Claymore, which is all kinds of crazy and has copious amounts of female nudity, yet doesn't bother me. It's such a weird manga, and it's actually been pretty dull for awhile, but I still follow it because I love how different it is.

I really don't know what I'm going to do when both Bleach and Naruto end. People complain about Naruto dragging on, but I'm fine with that. I don't want it to end just yet ;__; I'll miss Bleach, too, even though it isn't as good as Naruto. I might even become desperate enough to read One Piece. Oh man, that'd be the day.


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