The story of Naruto began when sixteen years ago a Nine-tailed demon fox attacked the ninja village of Konohagakure. Its power had the ability to flatten mountains and bring forth tsunamis. It was destruction, chaos and death rolled into one.
Konoha, the strongest of the five shinobi nations, was on the brink of destruction. In order to save the village from total annihilation, the village leader known as the Forth Hokage gave his life to seal the demon fox into an infant Naruto.
Before dying, the Forth Hokage asked that Naruto be treated as a hero. But people in Konoha were suspicious. Instead of granting the Fourth Hokage his dying wish, people began to shun Naruto and treat him as if her were the demon fox himself. Naruto grew up without friends of family. He expressed himself by pulling pranks on other people as a way of getting attention. His school work suffered and as a result he failed three times in the ninja exams.
A teacher at the ninja academy, Mizuki told Naruto that there was another way to pass the test. That is to steal a scroll from the Third Hokage. All Naruto had to do was to master a technique from the scroll and he would pass the test. Unknown to Naruto, Mizuki was tricking him. He only wanted the scroll for himself as this scroll contained hidden and forbidden techniques important to Konoha.
But Iruka found out Mizuki’s plot and intercepted Naruto and Mizuki. During the confrontation, Naruto found out that he was the container of the Nine Tailed Demon Fox, and finally knew why the villagers hated him. Mizuki urged Naruto to release the demon fox’s power and to kill Iruka. But Iruka intervened and told Naruto that he was not a monster. Enraged, Mizuki attackes Iruka but before he could strike, Naruto unleashes the technique he learned from the forbidden scroll. He creates hundreds of clones and attacks Mizuki. Shocked that such a prankster and failure could master a high level technique in a short time, Mizuki is stunned and finally defeated by Naruto.
Iruka allows Naruto to graduate and gives him his forehead protector as a gift. Iruka befriends Naruto and finally Naruto gets the recognition he desperately wanted.
As a graduate of the ninja academy, Naruto teams up with Sakura and Sasuke. They accomplish missions and tasks under the supervision of their Jounin (high ninja) teacher, Kakashi. Along the way, they meet other people and learn more about being a ninja.
As the series progresses, Naruto will have to learn about losing friends, teachers, and working hard to obtain his ultimate goal: to be Hokage.
Naruto is an ongoing manga series created by Misashi Kishimoto. It was first published in Japan’s Shounen Jump in 1998. As of today, Naruto is one of the most widely read and watched manga and anime series not only in Japan but in the whole world. It ranked 4th in Google search in 2007 and 7th in 2008.