Chapter 10 of Naruto: Sasuke’s Story, titled “The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust,” exposes Konoha’s persisting flawed perspective on redemption. Throughout the Naruto series, certain villains have been easily redeemed through Naruto’s persuasive abilities, resulting in their histories being whitewashed. This trend extends to characters like Orochimaru and Kabuto in the Boruto timeline, where they have taken on seemingly positive roles. Unfortunately, Sasuke Uchiha’s redemption was hurried to facilitate his role as a mentor in Boruto, disregarding the gravity of his past actions. Regrettably, Chapter 10 of Naruto: Sasuke’s Story continues this pattern by offering forgiveness to yet another deceitful criminal, further reinforcing Konoha’s misguided notion of what true second chances should entail.
In the closing events of Sasuke’s side quest, the Uchiha Ranger, alongside Sakura, defeats the prison warden, Zansuru, in Redaku and rescues the imprisoned inmates. They also manage to stop Jiji’s resurrection technique, which brought back dinosaurs. However, Jiji reveals that his involvement was driven by his desire to retrieve the corpse of his beloved from Zansuru. Sasuke discloses that the woman is actually alive, exposing Zansuru’s lie and manipulation of Jiji. Surprisingly, Sasuke’s Story concludes with Sakura saving Jiji, who is ultimately reunited with Margo and leads a content life as a tour guide for King Nanara. This outcome sets a dangerous precedent as Jiji should have faced legal consequences for his actions, which aided Zansuru in causing political unrest and endangering the lives of inmates at the facility.
It is essential for actions to have repercussions, and a more fitting resolution would have involved Jiji serving jail time. During his incarceration, he could have demonstrated remorse and transformation, with Sasuke and Sakura vouching for him. This alternative would have better acknowledged the chaos Jiji caused while leaving room for the possibility of a future redemption. However, the current happy ending feels forced and undermines the gravity of Jiji’s actions.
This instance in Sasuke’s Story is indicative of Konoha’s unrealistic and perilous pattern of granting redemption. By continuously advocating for villains to evade punishment, the Hidden Leaf shinobi and the Hokage fail to embody true justice. Despite Orochimaru being under surveillance, he continues his unethical scientific experiments by creating clones like Log and Mitsuki. This exemplifies why certain individuals in the Naruto franchise, regardless of their repentance, should face imprisonment.
In Jiji’s case, his act of political treason had the potential to harm other nations, as Zansuru intended to sell the dinosaur army as soldiers for coups. It is difficult to believe that the other Kage would support Konoha’s decision to release a criminal with such severe implications. Although Jiji’s actions were driven by love, setting this kind of precedent opens the door for manipulative individuals to exploit the concept of atonement. This conclusion to Sasuke’s Story risks allowing offenders to roam freely, armed with flimsy excuses and potentially dangerous intentions, after deceiving multiple unsuspecting governments like Konoha.
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