I had a hard time deciding where to start with this chapter, but ultimately I think one’s pretty much obligated to start with the fact that everything was supposedly part of Madara’s plan to begin with—including everything about Rin and Obito’s fall into the darkness. Looking back, I guess I should’ve seen this coming from a mile away, but it doesn’t change the fact that it was surprising to see Rin addressed again out of the blue like that—or the fact that Madara’s one sly son of a gun. To set that up and intentionally use Obito’s more noble traits (then his hatred) against him? That’s just devious.
I guess it’s only fitting though, that Obito’s manages to save the Team 7 equivalent of Rin before losing his eye to Madara—at least one assumes this will be the case—and it’s actually quite nice how everything gets linked together here. Because whereas there’s the whole Madara gaining yet more powers with a second Rinnegan, there’s the sense that our main cast has gained something by coming together one more time like this as well, and there’s much that could be said about how they’ve developed since they first formed their team. Needless to say, that quick flashback to the past was placed in a great spot, and it was nice to see how our team has either met or exceeded many of the goals they had initially. Furthermore, it highlighted how they’ve both changed and kept some of their core personality traits despite that, and it was a strong chapter through and through.
In the end, it’s only fitting that the team that started off the manga together will probably end up finishing up the manga together as well, and although it’s been a rocky path getting to this point, it’s impressive how things have managed to wrap back together despite that. Looking forward, it could very well be the last Madara power up we’ll see this series, and gosh darn it’s really starting to hit how close to the end we really are. Phew*