Review: Weekly Shonen Jump #32

If Kishimoto sticks to his guns, this will be the last proper chapter of Naruto manga that we ever read, and it was lovely. Kishimoto has gone on record as saying that after this miniseries and his involvement with the Boruto movie, he will not draw anything more regarding the Naruto world.  Though I would in no way be disappointed to read a Boruto series, especially with Kishimoto firing on all cylinders right now, I think this is the right decision.

Naruto's legacy really needed no final flourish: we knew he would be with Hinata, we know he would be Hokage, we knew his son would be a little dick, and we watched him rise to the status of savior well before the series' 700th chapter.  Sasuke's legacy needed to have the same kind of significance as Naruto's, since half of the series was pretty much his.  But wrapping that up needed to be done with an eye towards the things which made Sasuke... well, Sasuke.

And there is a panel where Sasuke does the famed Itachi forehead-touch to his daughter, and I started bawling: this is what Itachi wanted.  This panel, of all the panels Kishimoto has drawn in this miniseries, finally puts a period on the end of not only Sasuke's story, but Itachi's story, as well as the tattered legacy of the Uchiha.  All Itachi ever wanted was for his brother to have a chance to live a life in the Leaf free from the Uchiha bull shit.  But freeing Sasuke from the Uchiha nonsense was impossible to do: Sasuke himself had that Uchiha hatred running in his veins.  To see that Sasuke finally worked through that hatred after hearing the words of the First Hokage, to the point where he could find the love at its foundation and continue the Uchiha bloodline with the birth of Sarada-- well, nothing could possibly make Itachi happier.

WSJ 32 coverIn other news, One-Punch Man is getting an anime, and I am very interested to see how that goes for two reasons.  First, it is set up to be absolutely excellent: the series' creator, known as "One," has put together a gorgeously detailed and terrifying series with intentionally boring-looking and humorous Saitama at the center.  If the anime can carry the humor and involves the same level of detail as the manga, it will be a smash hit.  Second, the anime is set up for a disaster: One-Punch Man's publishing schedule has been fairly inconsistent and often quite slow: very few animes that out-pace their manga have lasting success.  Either way, this series has grown on me, and any time a series this popular and peculiar gets an anime, it's something to keep an eye out for.

Probably as big of a moment as the defeat of Doflamingo happened in the aftermath of the final battle of the Dressrosa arc: Issho bowed at the feet of King Riku and apologized for the world government's de facto sanctioning of the terrible things Doflamingo did.  This will likely be the moment we look back on as we inevitably head towards the dissolution of the Shichibukai.  The future in One Piece is now much more interesting.  The World Government obviously maintains a vested interest in hiding the events that lead to its rise to power in order to maintain that power.  But Issho is the type of figure we have not yet seen reach his full potential, and he now is singularly obsessed with making sure the world government flies straight.  Though I don't think this will lead to an alliance with Luffy, it does add an interesting new dimension to the conflict between the pirates and the government.

Food Club and Academia were both excellent this week, and I think it's safe to say that Naruto leaves Jump in the capable hands of a mostly-strong list of titles.

Score: 4/5

Weekly Shonen Jump #32 Writer: Various Artist: Various Publisher: Viz Media Release Date: 7/6/15 Format: Weekly; Digital