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I have been watching anime for a long time. As a kid, I would remember cartoons made only for laughs. On the other hand, anime taught me that these dynamic visuals could convey more than only humor. It is a form of art, which I’m glad I realized. And the one that got me into watching anime was Naruto which further introduced me to the world of manga.
Naruto is one of the best anime/manga series around. It was once considered one of the three main anime series. Its manga sales are a testament to its popularity, and it is the fifth all-time in volumes sold. Furthermore, many children worldwide, including myself, used to be glued to our television screens impatiently waiting for its next episode to air.
Naruto ran for 15 years. The journey of the twelve-year-old from the Hidden Leaf Village fascinated viewers for more than a decade. It did this by showing that even if the odds are against you, you have to keep fighting for your dreams. Naruto taught me many lessons, and whenever I write about it, I hope my readers become inspired enough to check the series out for themselves.
One of the factors of Naruto that makes it so endearing is its characters. Even side characters play a vital role in how the story turns out. One such character is Rin Nohara. Although not a central character, she is essential to the motivation of someone crucial to the plot. In the series itself, she is dead. But her character and personality shape the events of the whole story.
About the Naruto Series
Before we examine the character of Rin, let us first take a look at some of the main terms of the series that might be new for an aspiring Naruto fan:
The story of Naruto takes place in the shinobi world. The shinobis belong to various nations, and these nations have large villages inside. In the series, these villages are the Hidden Villages. There are five main Hidden Villages:
- The Hidden Leaf Village.
- The Hidden Mist Village.
- The Hidden Sand Village.
- The Hidden Cloud Village.
- The Hidden Rock Village.
All these villages have Kage (literally meaning Shadows) managing them.
The five Kage are:
- The Hokage (literally meaning Fire Shadow) of the Hidden Leaf Village.
- The Mizukage (literally meaning Water Shadow) of the Hidden Mist Village.
- The Kazekage (literally meaning Wind Shadow) of the Hidden Sand Village.
- The Raikage (literally meaning Lightning Shadow) of the Hidden Cloud Village.
- The Tsuchikage (literally meaning Earth Shadow) of the Hidden Rock Village.
Hierarchy of Ninjas
Under the Kage, there are generally three categories of ninjas. These are the jonin, chunin, and genin. The hierarchy of the ninjas is the Kage at the top, followed by Jonins, Chunins, and finally, Genins. The genins are teenage children, and talented children go to the Ninja Academy from a young age, and when these children graduate, they become genins.
One thrilling factor about the show is its powers, I know that’s one reason I loved it so much. In Naruto, these powers are exercised by special techniques called Jutsu. The Jutsu is exercised through Chakra. In every person, energy flows throughout their body like blood, Chakara. If Chakara is focused, it creates Jutsu.
Types of Jutsu
Although there are many Jutsu, scholars classify them into three categories. The first is ninjutsu. These Jutsus are generally offensive. One peculiarity about ninjutsu is nature-Jutsu. The Chakara can be transformed into fire, water, wind, earth, lightning, or a combination of these elements. Genjutsu is the second. These are illusions and mind-related techniques. Lastly, it is taijutsu which is a fighting style.
Other than these, there are also Kekkei Genkai (literally meaning bloodline limit) and medical Jutsu. Hereditary techniques are Kekkei Genkai, and they are mostly passed on through one’s genes and DNA. Kekkei Genkai appears in various forms, and one form of Kekkei Genkai is Eye Techniques. These include Sharingan, Byakugan, Rinnegan, etc.
The world of Naruto also has nine gigantic Tailed Beasts roaming around. All these beasts have immense reserves of Chakara, and they are also wild. Each municipality attempts to apprehend and seal them, and the goal is to increase military might. They seal these beasts in a person’s body, making them a jinchuriki (literally meaning Power of Human Sacrifice).
An Overview of Naruto Story Plot
Naruto follows the journey of the twelve-year-old jinchuriki, Naruto, and his friend and rival Sasuke Uchiha. Shortly after the birth of Naruto, the Nine-Tailed Fox attacked the Hidden Leaf Village. Later on, the Hokage seals the fox inside the infant Naruto to prevent it from causing havoc. But the villagers see him as the beast itself. The villagers direct their hatred and fear against him shun him.
But Naruto does not give up. Naruto wants to form a connection with the whole village. To do that, Naruto dreams of becoming the Hokage. After he graduates from the Ninja Academy, he joins Team 7. Paired with Sasuke and Sakura Haruno they learn under the jonin, Kakashi Hatake.
While Naruto wants to become the Hokage, Sasuke only has revenge on his mind. These feelings of vengeance are against his brother. Sasuke’s elder brother massacred the whole Uchiha clan, and now Sasuke wants to kill him.
Although the plot seems simple, both these characters go through a lot. They come to terms with who they are and what they must do because of their adventure. Their clash of ideology is one element that keeps the story moving. In the end, they both reach their dreams. However, it was not easy at all.
Rin Nohara: Appearance, Personality, Powers, and Abilities
Rin was a petite young lady with an average height. She had dark eyes and straight brown hair trimmed in a chin-length bob that framed her face. During her Academy days, her hair was long and draped almost to the top of her shoulders. On both sides of her cheeks, she had a rectangular purple mark.
She dresses up in a long-sleeved black shirt and a light purple apron skirt, with black shorts underneath. She also donned the usual Konoha forehead protector, as well as a pair of sandals and red tights that reached her thighs. A small red band was on her left wrist, though it is worth mentioning that the bracelet also appears in a few chapters of the manga.
Often in stories, there is a need for respected characters. The author uses such characters to establish a benchmark for goodness. They are also used as a motivational force for some particular characters. In Naruto, among some others, such a character is Rin Nohara.
Rin is a nice-hearted girl. She always cares for others around her, so she learns medical ninjutsu. She has a high intelligence too, and at a young age, she can master complex medical techniques. She supports Obito and somewhat justifies the aloof behavior of Kakashi, which shows her empathy.
The dedication that she has to protect her village is consistently on display. Even though she is kind-hearted, Rin is also full of determination. Despite her grief, she immediately recovered when she believed Obito had died. Furthermore, when the enemies sealed the Three-Tails beast in her to destroy the Hidden Leaf Village, she was willing to die instead.
Rin’s significant objective on her missions as a medical ninja was to help the soldiers. She showed remarkable ability and, surprisingly, helped her friends with essential emergency treatment.
Given her childhood, she was a talented medical ninjutsu user, and her fruitful embedding of Obito’s left Sharingan into Kakashi’s harmed eye proves it. Other than medical ninjutsu, Rin is also good at ninjutsu. Particularly the fire and water nature transformations.
The Tale of Rin Nohara: The Plot Through Rin’s Eyes
Before the story starts, Rin is already dead. In the series, her story lies in the flashbacks of Kakashi and Obito. Here is a summary of the events related to Rin Nohara:
The Academy Days
During the Academy days, Rin and Obito were the best of friends. She always acted towards Obito as a caring sister. Obito was an orphan, which made Rin extra caring towards him. An instance of this is during the entrance ceremony of the Academy, where Obito forgot his documents. But fortunately, she had them because she knew Obito would not remember them.
Rin always admired Kakashi. She was amazed at how talented Kakashi was and how he carried himself. It did not bother her that Kakashi was always aloof. After graduating with Obito, all three were put on the same team. Its head was the jonin Minato Namikaze, who became the Fourth Hokage.
As a test for taking them under his supervision for their graduation, Minato asked them to retrieve two bells for him. In the face of it, the whole ordeal was embarrassing. But then they worked together to get the bells finally and passed adequately from the Academy.
Sometime after graduating, the three undertook the annual chunin exams for their promotion. During the exam, they fought against another team. As usual, Obito was late to arrive. But he rashly charged into his opponents. However, Obito was knocked down in the fight.
Later on, Rin was healing Obito when he revealed his dream to become the Hokage. She cheered him on and supported his ambitions. In the third round of the chunin exams, she cheered Kakashi. He fought with his rival, Might Guy. Kakashi won the fight and subsequently was the first to become a chunin.
The Third Great Ninja War
Soon after, Kakashi became a jonin, and Obito became a chunin. The Third Great Ninja War also escalated between the different nations. Minato was under a secret mission, so Kakashi was asked to lead the team. The objective was to destroy a particular bridge. But Rin got kidnapped by the enemies Rin was roped down and interrogated with genjutsu. It was mental torture.
The objective of the enemies was to extract confidential information from Rin. But her determination and mental prowess remained steadfast. They could not get anything out of her. A little while later, the enemy hideout was attacked by Kakashi and Obito. They did manage to save her. But as they were escaping, the cave collapsed.
Obito jumped in to save Kakashi from the falling cave debris. The right side of Obito’s body got squashed under a boulder. Just before the battle, Obito had finally awakened his Sharingan. But since he was dying, he wanted Kakashi to replace his lost eye, and Rin transplanted it. They could not get Obito’s body as enemy reinforcements had arrived and ran away.
They were not able to get far before they got cornered. But Minato arrived to defeat them, and Kakashi got some time to recuperate. After which, they executed the original mission.
The Death of Rin
After the bridge mission was successfully executed, Rin got kidnapped. It was the Hidden Mist Village. But Madara Uchiha had manipulated the events to become impossible to get to the truth. The Three Tail Turtle, namely Isobu, was sealed into her, and a curse technique was also implanted. The aim was that when she returned to the Hidden Leaf Village, Isobu would be released, destroying the village.
Kakashi came to her aid immediately. Different jonin and Anbu-level Kiri shinobi were dispatched to “chase” after the beast to guarantee their catch. Rin, reluctant to end her own life in the wake of finding the real reason she was made a jinchuriki, asked Kakashi to kill her to safeguard the village. Kakashi rejected, saying he had vowed to Obito to protect her no holds barred.
Seeing the unwillingness of Kakashi, she decided to commit suicide in the end. She could not live for a while at the expense of her village. Her death came when she came in front of the Chidori attack of Kakashi. The not-so-dead Obito was there, looking at the whole scene, and he thought that it was Kakashi who killed her.
Before taking her last breath, Rin whispered the name of Kakashi. Due to fatigue, Kakashi passed out in front of the ninja. But Obito could not hold his rage back, and he killed enemy ninjas there. After her death, Obito promised to reunite with Rin through any means necessary.
After Rin’s Death
In a way, no one is dead in Naruto. Characters revive and die based on different jutsu. There is also an afterlife for characters. In the afterlife, the dead people look upon the living. Rin was always looking at Obito, hoping for the day when the two of them would cross paths again or meet in the afterlife.
At the climax of the series, Obito joins forces with Naruto and others to take down Kaguya Otsutsuki. But he dies. After reaching the afterlife, he sees Rin there. He apologizes for losing his way and not becoming the Hokage, and Rin replies by telling him that he tried his hardest. But before passing over with Rin, Obito claims to have still something to do.
Rin assures him that she will be there for him. She also remarks that Obito is fond of Kakashi, making him blush. After Obito returns and they manage to defeat Kaguya, he dies permanently. Both then pass over together.
The Relations Of Rin And Her Impact On Their Character Development
Kakashi is a jonin of the Hidden Leaf Village who later became the Sixth Hokage. Characterized as intelligent and formidable, Kakashi is a character that leaves most fans with a positive impression. Although aloof and carefree, Kakashi does care about his students and the Hidden Leaf Village.
One main attribute of Kakashi is that he upholds teamwork above everything else. This was taught to him by Minato, and it did not register with him at first. But when Rin was kidnapped, and Obito wanted to save her, he figured out the importance of teamwork. Kakashi strives to instill the same values in his students. However, his selfish and rash students fail.
Kakashi has spiky silver hair ordinarily orientated to one side, dull dark eyes (dark sometimes), and an agreeable and carefree attitude. His left eye was harmed during the Third Great Ninja War, and the occasion delivered an upward scar. Soon after, it was supplanted with a Sharingan, which he stows away under his forehead protector unless it is to be used. Kakashi usually hides his face under a mask.
He is a genius, too. At a young age, he became a genin and a chunin. Kakashi can use the ninjutsu nature transformations of fire and lightning. Kakashi can also summon mythical dogs to help him with different objectives. Kakashi is also quite skilled at genjutsu. All these powers are combined with his ability to use the Sharingan. Later on, it becomes the Mangekyou Sharingan.
Kakashi is, without a doubt, a pivotal figure in the series. He lost his father to suicide when he was young, and Kakashi took his missions very seriously. But the events following the deaths of Rin and Obito, the personality of Kakashi changes a lot.
As far as Rin is concerned, she had a thing for Kakashi, and she was also caring for him. When Kakashi became a jonin, Rin threw Kakashi a small secret party. Her little acts of kindness and her willingness to die for the village influenced the thoughts of Kakashi a lot.
Obito Uchiha turns out to be the main antagonist of the series. On Madara Uchiha’s orders, he manipulates events to start the Infinite Tsukiyomi plot. His reason was that he wanted to reunite with Rin one more time.
Initially, everybody thought that Obito was dead. But Madara kept him alive for his plan. Before the Fourth Great Ninja War initiates, Obito takes the alias of Tobi and wears a mask to hide his identity. He uses the Akatsuki for his purposes and tries to capture the Tailed Beasts.
But two jinchurikis of the Eight-Tails and the Nine-Tails, still are not captured. For this reason, Tobi starts the Fourth Great Ninja War. He uses the name of Madara until the latter revives later. When Obito comes out alive, it is a great shock to everyone, especially Kakashi.
Tobi wears various masks throughout the series. These are usually wooden and have holes in the eyes. Tobi, however, is a middle-aged man beneath the disguise. He was crushed on the right side of the face. His natural eyes are black when he is not utilizing his doujutsu. On the right side, he has a demolished torso.
Obito has feelings for Rin. She was his best friend. But since she liked Kakashi, Obito never said anything to her. Even though Rin did not feel the same way about Obito, she did care about him. Her role was like an older sister to him.
Because Rin meant so much to Obito, he completely changed with time. In his own words, he lost his way. Before initiating the Infinite Tsukiyomi plan, Obito aimed to become the Hokage. But Rin was not disappointed, and she let Obito know that he tried his hardest. In reality, Obito did everything to relieve his pain of losing Rin.
The Importance Of Rin In The Overall Storyline
Rin is barely in the series. She is either displayed through the flashbacks of Kakashi or Obito or in the afterlife. But the flashbacks themselves show her importance. Kakashi and Obito are two of the most central characters in Naruto. Kakashi teaches the show’s titular character, Naruto, and Obito is the main adversary of the show. Rin influences the actions of both these characters.
Speaking about Obito, he was in love with Rin, and they were best friends, and Obito relied heavily on Rin. The series repeatedly demonstrates how much she cares for Obito. He was also an orphan, making his attachment to Rin more crucial. Obito even tries to confess to her. But since he knows that Rin likes Kakashi, he first wants to prove himself.
As far as Kakashi cared, he thought of Rin only as a friend. But also, her romantic feelings were admiration more than anything else. But she did care for Kakashi. Moreover, Obito asking Kakashi to protect Rin before his supposed death left a strong impression on Kakashi. So when Rin breathes her last, Kakashi feels strongly responsible.
Another vital role of Rin in the series is the connecting factor. Kakashi and Obito fought when Rin got kidnapped during the Third Great Ninja War. The young Kakashi wanted to complete the mission, and Obito, on the other hand, wanted to save Rin. Obito made Kakashi realize that sometimes, some things matter more than your mission. Due to this tussle, Kakashi and Obito became close.
But Obito died soon after trying to save Kakashi. Rin getting kidnapped made the bond between Kakashi and Obito possible. Because Obito became close to Kakashi, he wanted his Sharingan transplanted to him. The Sharingan of Kakashi became a substantial element in the story.
At the climax, the bond between Kakashi and Obito also proved vital. Kaguya Otsutski was formidable, and Naruto in his Nine-Tails form and Sasuke with his Rinnegan were having trouble with her. This shows how much strength she had. But Obito joined forces with Naruto. He also gave Kakashi his other Sharingan, which proved crucial for the result of the battle to turn in their favor.
Fascinating Facts and Trivia
What is the meaning of Rin’s name?
In Japanese, a word can have many meanings, depending on the context. Her first name Rin can mean dignified, severe, or cold. Her family name is Nohara which means field. If you consider the complete name, it means a Dignified Field. The character of Rin is also representative of upholding dignity for the sake of the Hidden Leaf Village.
Was Rin a jinchuriki?
Yes, by definition. Rin seems to be the only jinchuriki that died, and all the other jinchuriki had their tailed beast extracted. According to the Naruto lore, the Tailed Beast sealed inside a jinchuriki gets released when they die. Probably the same happened to Rin and Isobu.
What does Rin’s databook say?
The databook talks about four things:
- her favorite food, her favorite word, and her hobby.
- Her favorite food is strawberry.
- She likes the word “friendship” more than any other word.
- Finally, she is very fond of shells, so she likes collecting them.
Question: How significant was Rin’s role in the series?
Answer: Rin is a character that had the minute character time but had a lot of impacts. Obito loved her, and he was one of the main antagonists in the show. Her death caused Obito to lose faith in everything and, in his words, wanted to end the ninja world as he knew it. She also influenced the view of Kakashi. Rin is also related to Naruto through Minato and Kushina.
Question: How does Madara capture Rin?
Answer: In the series, there are not enough details on the matter. After reviving, Madara exposes his diabolical strategy, and Obito begins to have second thoughts. He tells him the events that led to the death of Rin. He kidnapped her by placing a tag in her and then sealed the Three-Tails inside her. Madara put a curse tag on her after using a genjutsu. It gave the impression that the Hidden Mist was responsible.
Question: Is there a love triangle between Obito, Rin, and Kakashi?
Answer: Although it may seem that way, there is not. Rin has similar characteristics with Sakura from Team 7. But unlike Sakura, the feelings that Rin has for Kakashi are of admiration more than anything else. On the other hand, she cares for Obito, and she is his best friend. If Rin had not died, I think Obito and Rin would have probably ended up together.
Naruto is a legendary series. Many manga-loving millennials were raised by Naruto. It is the story of a young twelve-year-old boy shunned by the village and trying to find recognition. The journey, the ups, and the downs hold a place in the hearts of many.
But Naruto is not only about the titular character. A person cannot grow without others around to influence him. And Naruto is a masterclass of how a story should be told. It has a rivalry, heavy character-building moments, dilemmas, and political intrigue. The vastness of how much it encapsulates is what has memorialized Naruto.
Rin is one of the other characters who play a significant role in the story’s development. Although she is dead, her memory through the hearts and minds of Obito and Kakashi are vital to the story. Rin is a sweet young lady desperate to defend those she cares about. Her endearing qualities make Obito fall in love with her. And with her death, the events of Naruto started.
If Kakashi and Obito didn’t have Rin, they wouldn’t be as good friends. Madara could not have influenced somebody to carry out his plans when he died. The Third Hokage often spoke of the Spirit of Fire. Rin had that fire, and she passed on that spirit to Kakashi and Obito, albeit differently.
And this is the reason I love the Naruto series too. A character’s motivation can be so simple that anybody can comprehend it. For the sake of love, one is willing to change or destroy the world. Most people can relate to this. Even if they have not experienced it themselves, they know people who have. This is how I see it.