First off, apologies for the delay. It was said there wouldn’t be a chapter release until the end of Golden Week, but apparently a chapter popped up sometime in the last few days and I didn’t catch it until now due to finals. =[
Going right in, I have to say that this chapter actually surprised me a little bit. I mean, I neither expected another chapter dedicated completely to Kabuto’s past nor the fact that Kishimoto Masashi would actually go into detail regarding why Kabuto’s “mother” did not recognize him. Considering there was some discussion and questions regarding the latter, it was nice to see the elaboration, and everything just goes to show the lengths that Root would go in order to meet their goals. Combining this with the dialogue between Orochimaru and Kabuto, and this chapter was actually one of the more interesting of the recent chapters. In addition, we get further elaboration as to how the two meet, and a quick go through of all the things Kabuto has done for Orochimaru up until the Akatsuki infiltration, which was snuck in pretty well.
I know I’ve mentioned how the flashbacks have felt a tad out of place the past few chapters, but with the flashbacks seemingly coming to a close and this well done chapter, I’m getting the slight feeling that I was potentially too harsh in my comments regarding them. Though, this might perhaps be due to fact that there’s been a lot more flashbacks than expected, and thus more depth explored than I thought there would be. In some ways, I do feel a little sympathy for Kabuto now, but I guess most of that is due to the fact that we’re seeing a lot of involvement from Danzo and Root, as well as Orochimaru, both of whom are arguably more villainous than Kabuto, and thus take the ire away from him a bit.
Regardless, it is kind of a pity that we’re finally getting the real back story now, especially when it’s pretty much written in stone that Kabuto is not going to live past this particular arc. At this point, we’ve pretty much flashed back his entire life up until this point, and if that’s not akin to a death flag and the flashbacks people are rumored to get when they pass on, I don’t know what is.
On another note, I did go “Hm…” a bit at the explanation Orochimaru gave to Kabuto as to why he chose to save him, as well as why he does the things he does. It makes sense, but at the same time feels kind of… strange? I can’t really describe it, but the words and phrasing he said didn’t seem to quite fit his personality that well. Perhaps it was partially a bluff or maybe just something lost in translation though. Either way, it’s not that big of a deal, but I wanted to point this out to see if anyone else got the same feeling, or if it’s just me.