A fan letter to Masashi Kishimoto
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M / Spying on Orihime...
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Posted 5/18/12

This is one person who didn't understand the value of Naruto. Once watched the show. He/she has been inspired to become an better person ^^


I’m not entirely sure if you come on any of these fan forums or websites to see how your fans receive Naruto, but I’m certain of two things: that you care a lot about your fans and that the recent reception some of us have given to Naruto, including myself, haven’t been the best. But then again, when have we (those fans among us) not been critical of your series or you?

I felt it necessary to write this open letter Kishimoto because I went over all my blogs and comments and noticed how negative and critical I’ve been and I haven’t put enough effort in expressing how I truly feel about Naruto and perhaps my negative comments drown out all the positive feedback I give. I’d like if I can to start from the very beginning; my initial exposure to Naruto. I’d like to say that my run-in with anime altogether might have begun with Dragonball and Dragonball Z but watching DGB never led me into the arena and culture of anime. I remember seeing Yu Yu Hakasho along with other anime on Toonami, but they never truly sparked my interest as much as Dragonball, Pokemon and Digimon did.

My run in with Naruto began when I was in Egypt in the year 2006. I was walking home and a friend of mine who recently got married came running to me. He told me he was looking for me and that he wanted to give me something. He told me it was his “treasure chest.” Having sparked my interest I asked him what it was. He held out a hard drive with episodes of Naruto on it. He told me that when he got married his wife had given him a hard time about him watching Naruto and he felt somewhat guilty about it and he didn’t want to upset her. So he thought I would appreciate Naruto and perhaps inherit this “treasure” from him. He told me he grew up on Naruto and it felt like a part of his life and that perhaps he might have moved on from that chapter of his life, but he would always be someone touched by Naruto and its lessons; a Narutard for life.

This act surprised me. I mean why someone as old as him, probably 25 would or 26 years of age, adore an anime so much that he would not be able to get himself to delete it? But he wanted to pass it on to someone else so it could bring them as much joy as it brought him. He knew I was in the stage in my life where I didn’t really know who I was and he thought perhaps Naruto would show me a way towards finding myself. I took the hard drive and I remember throwing it somewhere in my room completely disregarding it and I remember it being in that same place the day I left Egypt. I remember my roommate asking me what it was. I told him it was a hard drive with Naruto on it and that he could have it if he wanted. I didn’t even bother to give the series a chance. Something I could never comprehend until now.

It was not until a year or two later that I remembered “Hazim’s” enthusiasm for Naruto and I decided to give the series a chance. A decision that would have a lasting effect on me. In Naruto, I discovered a part of myself. It might have been apparent to me initially but after a while, looking back, I realized Naruto taught me the world would have expectations of us to become uniform when in reality we are different, we should be happy in our diversity and not conform for the sake of others and society.

From Naruto I saw your messages of Peace through love and understanding, the value of friendship and elders. I came to know and love Japanese culture through the many allusions to Japanese mythology and culture in your series. Before I can honestly say I knew little to nothing about Japan, to me Japan then was a nation on the other side of the Pacific full of a bunch of cool B Boy Asians with great anime. I think I knew more about Chinese culture when I was younger due to Kung fu movies and movies by Jackie Chan and others. Now I can say that I probably know more about Japanese culture than any other Asian culture. I’m not proud or blissful for my ignorance but it sheds a light to how much your series has caused me to expand my perception of Japanese culture.

I know at this point in your life you’re probably focused on your son and wife and we as your Naruto fans wish you and your family all the best and all your future endeavors after Naruto. You’ve left me and many others with timeless lessons and insights and I’d like to get across how much they mean to us. From characters like Jiraiya and Naruto, Kakashi and Nagato. From Minato to Kushina, you’ve touched us all with their stories and many of us easily relate to them.

There are times when I’ve been outrageously critical and hard on your work, Kishimoto and that is probably because I’ve felt at times that you did not have full freedom in expressing how you wanted your anime or manga to be presented. At times I blamed you for stalling and trolling, but in reality I enjoyed each episode and chapter and honestly was too anxious and impatient at what might be presented in the next chapter. At times I blamed the editors and the publishers feeling that they were more interested in quotas then actual content but I trust you’ll always keep your fans in mind and stay true to the telling of the story of the Orange Ninja called Naruto.

You may or may not know this but you have the biggest fan base outside of Japan, and that is an amazing feat. Some of your fans are in countries you’ve probably never heard of, from places like Slovenia, Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Romania and so many others. You have a fan base in the United States and much of western and Eastern Europe. You even have a major fan base in Latin America and countries like Argentina and Brazil. You’ve impacted the world without even realizing it and we are glad you did not abandon your dreams and the story of the Orange Ninja. Your own story has motivated us to go after our own dreams and goals and I hope you know that as well.

Thank you for everything Kishimoto and you will always be for me, and other Naruto fans, one of the greatest Mangakas of our time.

Best of wishes, sincerely, One of your biggest fans and critics,
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F / In a superego lacuna
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Posted 5/19/12
Nice.
Sailor Candy Moderator
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Posted 5/25/13
Spring forum cleaning! To keep the forums neat and tidy we only keep 6 months worth of threads since its May 25, 2013 [5/25/13] we will keep only keep posts open from December 25, 2012 [12/25/12]. Please feel free to recreate any thread closed, as long as someone else didn't open another similar one before you.
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