Real R1 Naruto DVDs started to trickle in. In San Francisco, for example, you can see them on the same shelf with Hong Kong bootlegs. Only 2 volumes are available at the moment.
Since Naruto is so gigantic and uneven, I am going to buy parts only. So far, the must-have episode list shapes like this.
- #19: The aftermath of Sasuke's death was awesome. Haku is so cold, you can't help loving the little brain-damaged kid. Well, both of them. Poor Sakura, too.
- #22: Energy 120%. And it really is, all the way. Background changes are magic. Dialogue is fantastic. BTW, in this episode Sakura saves Sasuke's ass from a very bad injury, and not a signle reviewer take the point when they bash her.
- #32: Sakura Blossoms. What can I say, I'm weak for the silly wench. Kishimoto only gives her character displays very infrequently.
- #53: The chemistry of Ero-hermit and the master of Sexy-jutsu is very worthy. Sometimes I wonder if it is wise to keep Naruto in the dark like Jiraya does, but every time I see that it is wise. It may not be fair, but life is not supposed to be fair.
- #70: Maybe (Shika).
- #80: Sakura in black, how can I refuse? No, that was a joke. The real reason is, it's a different kind of Naruto, and it's great. Don't expect any action.
- #86-#100: This is probably the most consistent arc with the smallest amount of useless footage. But it is a long sequence, so I'll have to think about it. I'll get it if I decide on getting a contiguous arc.
- #109: Maybe (Sakura).
- #122: Maybe (Shika).
- #125: Maybe (Temari & Shika).
- #135: This is an aftermath and a pivot episode, but it has Temari & Shika, plus Sakura, etc. Lots of useful dialogue to remember.
If Hinata got a better lot than the one she gets, I'd love to see that. But alas, her treatment really wasn't satisfactory - and that's including the ridiculous attack (defence, actually), given to her in the fillers.