Naruto Volume 48: The Cheering Village

Naruto Volume 48: The Cheering Village
Story and Art: Masashi Kishimoto
Release Date: 4th November 2009
Covers Chapters 443-453
Shonen Jump/Viz Media

Another arc comes to an end and this time it feels like it could have been the end of the series! Back story, relief and then the build up to the next arc, just be ready to accept books and the Dragon Ball effect.

Volume 48 starts with the final Pain defeated and Naruto heads off to meet the mastermind behind it all! Turns out this crippled man has a story to tell as he questions if Naruto can come up with an answer to achieve peace. The back story is long telling the tale of Nagato’s past as he comes across the pain of war and how he became like he is today. It’s interesting if a little cliché, I wonder just how many people Naruto meets are just like him? Though while cliché the story escalate for an exciting finale and Nagato is given depth and reason behind his actions, it is quite a  satisfying end to the character though the next events aren’t loved by all.

The book and the Dragon Ball effect. Naruto uses a book he and Nagato’s teacher Jiraiya wrote to prove his point that he can achieve peace. It may appear a little forced and cheesy and then we have Nagato’s final moment as he brings everyone back to life he has just killed off. Cheap and unsatisfying? I’m not so sure, I felt the book was established throughout the arc to lead to this conclusion and Nagato’s power of life and death has been hinted at also. It may not be the most dramatic conclusion to the destructive arc but it finishes things up on a pleasant and rather uplifting note. Naruto coming back to a village cheering him on feels like the series could end at this point, if there weren’t some villains still knocking about it would have been a solid ending I’d have thought.

Though the story moves on and the next arc begins as Danzo becomes the next Hokage and an issue for Sasuke’s death is put forward! It seems things are going to get even more hectic than before as a summit for the ninja village leaders, the Gokage, is called and finally Root may be of some major threat to the heroes. Volume 48 may be lacking on fights but a decent flashback story and the exciting potential of the next arc make for a decent time, books and Dragon Balls included.


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