Masashi Kishimoto’s “Sasuke Retrieval” arc naruto is full of colorful secondary characters and expendable villains. While most supporting characters continue to leave an impact, their opposition is mostly forgettable. However, a villain introduced late in the arc, Kimimaro, is a game changer who bucks this trend and ranks among the top shonen antagonists. His presence at the end of this story is refreshing and memorable, if short-lived.
Kimimaro quickly eclipses the Sound Four, Kabuto and Orochimaru’s first buddies. His design, power, and tragic history established him as a character to watch. When Kishimoto reveals that Kimimaro would have been Orochimaru’s (rather than Sasuke’s) new body were it not for his illness, it becomes apparent that Kimimaro will be a formidable force.
Kishimoto found the perfect set of factors for Kimimaro to enter late in the game and make a lasting impact in and out of narutothe story. Naruto ran out of followers while pursuing Sasuke and the Sound Four, so his one-on-one with Sasuke seemed inevitable. When Kimimaro blocked Naruto’s path, it seemed like the fateful collision with Sasuke would have to wait while the protagonist dealt with the equally powerful Kimimaro.
Rock Lee and Gaara joining forces to confront Kimimaro and free Naruto to continue his endless pursuit of Sasuke adds so much hype to Kimimaro’s final stance. Faced with such terrifying opposition, Lee and Gaara make amends and use everything they have to withstand the villain’s onslaught. Gaara and Lee had shown themselves among the upper echelon of narutobut Kimimaro pushed them to their limits.
Between the demonic form of the cursed mark and its disturbing bone powers, narutoKimimaro is straight out of a horror franchise. The sounds and images of him manipulating and manifesting his skeleton in violent combat walked a fine line between awesome and repulsive. However, Gaara’s crushing and nearly impenetrable sand is not enough to defeat Kimimaro, who prevails due to motivation stemming from his devotion to his master and his cause.
Watching these high-level ninjas succumb to Kimimaro’s relentless attacks is heartbreaking. If fate were in his favor and he wasn’t on his deathbed, the scope of Kimimaro’s potential powers would be among the best. Instead, the scene of a desperate demon emerging from an endless field of razor-sharp bones with a massive ivory spear is unforgettable.
While his time in naruto may have been short, Kimimaro’s appearance is powerful, unforgettable and full of the lost potential of a legend who passed too soon. Kishimoto constructed the appropriate mystical tune for Kimimaro while establishing his fame by comparing him to some of the stronger characters and contrasting him with lesser antagonists. While it would be brilliant to see the extent of Kimimaro’s potential, his character wouldn’t have been so impactful if his time hadn’t been fleeting.