It’s been a long while since I last wrote something about the awesome Naruto Manga series. The latest release, Chapter 364 entitled “The Target” answers a lot of the questions involving Akatsuki and the Uchiha clan.
The famed leader of the Akatsuki was once mistaken to be either the reincarnation of the Fourth Hokage who possessed the Sharingan. This however were proven wrong by the makers of Naruto and was admitted to be the result of a mishap in the clean-up of the manga scans last year.
Still, theories and assumptions about the identity of the Akatskui leader remained a hotly debated issue. As I’ve said nearly all questions were answered in Chapter 364. The leader of the Akatsuki is not the Fourth Hokage, however he does indeed possess the legendary Sharigan. What’s even more shocking and legendary is the the leader is none other than Madara Uchiha.
Who is Madara Uchiha? Well, no one really knows but looking back into the previous chapters especially the opening sequence of Naruto Shippuuden Anime series, the Kyuubi or the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox seems to know a lot about Uchiha Madara and the rest of the Uchiha clan.
Remember what the Kyuubi said to Sasuke when they met each other inside Naruto during a preview sequence in the very first episode of the Shippuuden series?
Kyuubi: I see, an Uchiha is it? Your growth is impressive. You can even see me inside Naruto. Such would be the power of your Sharingan, that cursed clan’s power.
Sasuke: Seems this isn’t the first time you’ve seen the Sharingan. If so, then you are [the] Kyuubi.
Kyuubi: Eyes with such power and chakra more sinister than my own… Just as Uchiha Madara was.
[Sasuke grabs the Kyuubi and dispereses it.]
Sasuke: And you expect me to know that person?
You heard it from the Kyuubi itself. The Uchiha clan and their Sharingan could become more powerful than even the great demon spirits. Perhaps this is the reason why as Chapter 364 reveals, an Uchiha, Uchiha Madara is the leader of the Akatsuki. He’s among the very few in the Naruto world who can control or influence the great demon spirits, the Kyuubi amongst them.
In this chapter, it’s also been revealed that there are more than 9 Akatsuki as originally impressed by the early chapters of the manga series. Now that Deidara and Tobi (?) are dead two new Akatsuki members make full appearances. A rose-wearing girl and Pain who looks a lot like the Fourth Hokage if you ask me.
This is the reason why that assumption came up in the first place. In the shadows, Pain and the Fourth Hokage resembled each other in silhouette. The appearance of Pain’s iris also fooled us into thinking that he too has the Sharingan. Now, things are more clear.
On the other hand, a certain part of the assumptions about the Akatsuki leader is true. That he indeed has the Sharingan, so therefore he is an Uchiha, not just any ordinary Uchiha, but the Uchiha Madara. Though I’m a bit confused because Uchiha Madara wears the same one-eyed swirled face mask as Tobi wears. We didn’t really see Tobi in action and it was shown he was killed along with Deidara in the latter’s final explosion jutsu. Hmm….possibilities are still open.
Now there are three Uchihas in the Naruto world; Uchiha Sasuke, his older brother Uchiha Itachi and their long not-so-lost relative; Uchiha Madara.
The manga series continues to be more and more exciting with each chapter. In the following chapters we will see more action, this time from Naruto’s side as they are now the targets of Pain and his female Akatsuki partner. I just can’t wait! Lastly, you can give this chapter a download via this link.