This topic was originally posted as two parts on NF, due to the dreaded 10,000-character limit.
Here is the list where I go in the opposite direction. My list of likes can be found here.
The following list is strictly based on who can be found in the manga. I think I like most of the characters in Naruto, but they overlap with some I’m just disappointed in. There are other characters I don’t care too much about either way. The characters described by above are not listed, with a few exceptions. This list is for those characters I have more of a dislike for and don’t like at all. There are also two characters from my likes list who are here, as well.
I know plenty of people will like most of the characters I mention here. And since I was never one to really enjoy character-bashing (for the most part), I will try to avoid bashing the characters and tone down some of the things I originally posted.
Unlike the likes list, where I mostly listed the characters in order by how much I like them, I will place the characters on this list in order of their appearance or development. The names of characters I despise will appear in red.
Naruto: This is really a love-hate thing, but there are many more things that bother me about him than there are positive. This is mainly due to the length of Part 2, meaning there were more moments that damaged Naruto’s character in my eyes.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I really became invested in this story because of the main character. Naruto could be an irreverent jackass, but I loved him because of the chip on his shoulder and his drive despite his early hardships and disadvantages. He looked like a true underdog, but developed into a hero by the end of Part 1.
The destruction of Naruto’s character was facilitated as Sasuke’s absence took away a rival in arm’s reach. While at odds with each other, the proximity of the two characters had a decidedly positive effect in moments.
Naruto’s focus on an absent Sasuke also took away from other pressing matters and the other friendships Naruto had formed since he graduated from the Ninja Academy. Naruto became codependent and that took him from his own narrative.
The prophecy only made matters worse. Other characters became more irrelevant and Naruto was thus being inserted into conflicts instead of naturally finding his own reasons to fight. This ultimately took away from the premise of a boy who wanted to lead his own village and took the story toward a world-wide conflict involving unexplained aliens.
By then, Naruto’s character had already suffered a death for me. He let Karui beat him senseless, he bowed before the Raikage, and he was rude to Gaara after being told that Sasuke might have to be killed. Making matters worse, Naruto then hyperventilated and fainted.
At times, Naruto came off as a douche. He wanted to lead, but rarely followed. He badmouthed and disrespected those who told him “No” or gave him news he didn’t like. He also discounted those who wanted to help him.
Regardless, there were people throwing themselves at his feet and kissing up to him by the end of the manga. Earlier, we were shown what drew people to Naruto; we were later told how inspirational Naruto was. Even his TNJ’s* were less convincing and heartfelt as they were before.
In short, and to loosely quote someone, Naruto didn’t really grow up as the world around him was being dumbed down to meet him. So, by the time Naruto finally became Hokage, he became a character I no longer recognized, the title had been thoroughly shat upon, and it looked extremely petty compared to the war and its far-reaching implications. What Naruto needed was adequate attention throughout the manga. He needed more of a focus on his goal to become Hokage. He needed to communicate more with people who weren’t Sasuke. However, that is not what he got for much of the manga and it destroyed the overall narrative.
Sasuke: He was never a favorite of mine, namely because of his arrogance and rudeness. However, he had his moments of resolve and provided Naruto with a rival who pushed him to greatness.
Sasuke’s character took a turn for the worse once Itachi messed with his head for the second time. While I understand the anger and hurt Sasuke suffered through for much of his life, he was never justified in joining a criminal in Orochimaru who had just attacked his home village and had long conducted human experimentation. Nor was Sasuke justified in trying to kill former teammates.
Through much of the story, Sasuke was used and he saw fit to use others until they no longer served a purpose for him. His treatment of Karin in particular is inexcusable.
And despite what he did, Sasuke was always forgiven or given in-story excuses for what he did. He even got married and had a kid. That ran counter to how villains were treated.
Naruto’s focus on Sasuke was detrimental for both characters and the focus on the Uchiha torpedoed the manga as a whole. This was made even worse by the piecemeal tidbits we were given about the Uchiha massacre and relatively little characterization we were given for the Uchiha themselves.
Sasuke never had many internal dialogues until character 699. Many chapters before, he waffled between the edges of sanity and insanity, with his DARKNESS and HATRED, because Kishimoto didn’t know how to make a truly morally gray character ─ outside of Tobriama. Kishimoto said that Sasuke wouldn’t cooperate at times. Well, that shows the mangaka was listening to the character, but still forced some things, right?
Konohamaru: I never liked this kid. While it was cool to see someone look up to Naruto, who had himself been ridiculed and disrespected his whole life, that wasn’t enough to save Hiruzen’s grandson. There was just never really any point to Konohamaru, and what made him worse was his sense of entitlement.
And what I saw from the latest one-shot really grinds my gears. Grrr…
Konohamaru’s Friends: I hate Moegi’s hairdo and Udon needs to blow his nose for Pete’s sake. They are also add-on characters.
Orochimaru: I genuinely don’t like villains, so that is one strike against Oro. I also don’t care for mass murder, manipulation, and human experimentation.
That said, I respected the specter of Orochimaru. He created a fear in his operatives and opponents. He was a fitting villain and at least should have been given a fitting ending. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case.
Kabuto: Initially, I was neutral to this character, as he seemingly helped Team 7 get through the second part of the Chuunin Exams. However, I was firmly against him when he was revealed to be one of Orochimaru’s operatives.
Kabuto is a special case, as my opinion of him could have changed depending on how his character was handled. There was the chance that he would turn against Orochimaru and an odd moment when he helped Hinata. However, the first part was squashed in the Penis Sai and Sasuke Arc. I hated how Kabuto assimilated Orochimaru’s remains into his own body, but there was a chance for Kishimoto to resolve Kabuto’s identity issues. I wanted to know more about the character’s origins, but alas, the story we were given left more questions than answers and never quite got to the heart of who Kabuto really was, really.
Additionally, I never really liked Kabuto’s design. He looked like a scrub, so it created confusion in me that he wasn’t just treated like one and left at that. I thought his character design was better at the start of the war, but he quickly disgusted me as the war went on.
On top of that, I can’t get past what Kabuto did to help Obito in the war. By procuring all these Edo Tensei summons (including Madara), Kabuto is directly responsible for tens of thousands of deaths. By all means, he didn’t deserve a happy ending.
Hyuuga Hiashi: Even if he reformed his ways, he disregarded Hinata for much of her life. He told Kurenai that he didn’t care for Hinata and could care less if she died on a mission. There has never been a good conversation between the father and his elder daughter and I still detect favoritism toward Hanabi.
Koharu and Homura: Introduced in Part 1, these were characters who never really appealed to me. This is not due to their age (directly), but the air of snobbishness I detected from Koharu in particular and the skirt-hiding impression I got from Homura. I could never really look at these two separately and I came to despise them because of their mouths. They were snooty, disrespectful, and ultimately out of touch and behind the times. These two wanted to hold onto the little power they had but never contributed anything meaningful to the welfare of their village or the world at large from what we were shown.
Obito, Post-Kakashi Gaiden: This was the person who instilled in Kakashi part of his moral code. Obito was a hero who sacrificed his life for his friends, but that all changed when he was given half a body made by Zetsu goop and saw the “love of his life” ─ whom he never even kissed ─ commit suicide.
Obito’s character was destroyed for me once he was unmasked and started talking as his 31-year-old self. He tried to kill a newborn, basically killed his own sensei and his wife, and was behind thousands of deaths in the Narutoverse. Specifically, Obito helped to destroy his clan, which he implicated in the second attack with Kurama. This was all to avenge his friend and force people into some stupid dream world ─ which would essentially erase the humanity of those being put under. Even if he was being manipulated, this does not excuse what he did on his own volition.
Speaking of Rin, I don’t know whether or not to list her, but I kind of despise her because of how often her name was mentioned by an unmasked Obito. She was barely a character but she was a catalyst for Obito’s destruction.
Danzo: He is another odd case. I just hate the despicable and treasonous acts committed by him, but I respected what he brought to the story. He was an intriguing character.
Nagato: His design, hypocrisy, and relative immaturity stood out to me even since he talked to Naruto. I hate seeing the effects of eating disorders, so Nagato’s gaunt, anorexic appearance was an instant turn-off for me. Nagato preached about how destructive the Five Great Nations were, but saw fit to kill innocents and create a “peace” built on mutually-assured destruction. He acted like a petulant child with extraordinary powers and was played like a drum by Obito/Madara.
Konan: While she had an impressive fight against Obito, she was never really her own character. She was basically a valet for Nagato and had a personality as flat as her paper.
Black Zetsu: At one point, I was genuinely interested in knowing the origins of Zetsu and the abilities of his black half, but alas, we were given a mess during the war. The mystery of this creature had to be solved at this point, but what we were ultimately given sucked donkey balls. I was somewhat satisfied with the HashiMada explanation over time, but the Kaguya origin story ruined everything.
On top of that, I hate how Black Zetsu demeaned the ones he [indirectly] manipulated and ultimately became a cog in the string of puppeteers. He was literally scum and Kishimoto passed the buck from the humans to a mindless woman alien and some non-human mess.
Anyone from Akatsuki, Really: Yeah, I hated their goals and they were wasted. If I had to choose one from this group I actually liked, it would be Sasori, minus some of the things he said to Chiyo. And even then, his character was assassinated as an Edo Tensei summon.
Itachi, Especially: Despite what he did to his own clan, I was initially neutral to this character. This changed during the war, as Kishimoto seemed to insert this character or invoke his name for no apparent reason at times. The fight against Edo Nagato pushed me toward the edge and the fight with Sasuke against Kabuto was one of the worst in the manga with the asspullish Izanami. Even worse was how Kishimoto made other characters go out of their way to lick Itachi’s balls and did a reach-around to still paint Itachi as a hero.
While some people will say that a character’s fans do not make for a good reason to hate a character, I raise one objection in Itachi’s case. Kishimoto is Itachi’s biggest fan, and this accounts for the character’s portrayal in the manga. It is author favoritism I cannot forgive and this has turned my needle from neutral to the negative side in regards to Itachi.
The last part is why I slightly dislike Shikamaru.
Madara: Do I think he made an effective villain? Yes. He stirred feelings towards him whether one loved him or hated him.
Was he well-developed? Yes, for the most part. He had a distinct personality with memorable faces and gestures. His backstory with Hashirama was enthralling and Madara’s motivation could be easily surmised. There were parts of his character that one could sympathize with.
That said, was he a villain this story needed? Sadly, I have to say no. Madara was past his time and his presence in the story took it off its course. Add to that the numerous instances of trolling and general BS used to make the war conclude and the Moon’s Eye Plan succeed. Madara was a Game Genie and he took the issue of powerscaling to a ludicrous level.
I never liked Madara because of his thirst for power. While his anger at his clan (if he had it) would be understandable, it never excused his planning to turn the world into Zetsus and to undermine everything his sometime friend had done to make the world more peaceful, even if that took time.
On top of that, Madara was a stinking misogynist. Oh my God, I hate those.
The Uchiha Collectively: Let it be known that I do not condone pogroms, but the way the Uchiha were portrayed forces readers to ask the question of whether or not the massacre was unavoidable and thus justified. The Uchiha were portrayed as a trouble — not just troubled — clan whose power could be unlocked with a tragedy and strong emotions. As it stands, they would have rebelled against Hiruzen and a coup d’état would have been bloody ─ outside any genjutsu to get people to cooperate.
What bothers me specifically is the lack of any account from Fugaku and any other dissenting Uchiha. We are only really given the point of view from Itachi and those aligned with Konohagakure, albeit limited. What’s more is how we don’t know how the Uchiha regularly related to one another beyond their blood. If the past accounts of Madara and Obito are anything to go by, it appears that most Uchiha never really cared for each other beyond their own immediate families, and that is a problem.
If the Uchiha were to be given an extended focus, they needed to have adequate representation in the manga. By that, I mean they should have had their issues comprehensively shown and be weighed by more people than those closely involved. It seems like the issues with the Uchiha were largely confined to them and that has led to it remaining a secret to much of the village. In particular, Naruto, although somewhat informed, was largely removed from this part of his village’s past and that did even more damage to his character and narrative. What was the point, then?
Karin: It was always hard to me to care for her character, but I liked the chemistry she had with Suigetsu.
While her character looked promising at the end of the Kage Summit Arc, she quickly regressed by the start of the war. I hate how she quickly forgave Sasuke for impaling her and thus turned into a joke character. She actually liked that pain he gave her and seemed to enjoy the bites she received before. Karin is basically a masochist and I don’t really care for characters like that.
Speaking of masochism, I have to mention Sakura here, too, for ending up with the Sauce. I hate SasuSaku because of the abuse, the limited communication, and for there being no in-manga justification for Sakura’s love outside Sasuke’s looks. *Cue British Voice* Sorry.
Karui: In short, she is basically the overused Angry Black Woman stereotype found in fiction. The stereotype is often used to pigeonhole black women IRL.
Shii: For making that “Konoha Dogs” comment and then promptly getting owned by Sasuke’s genjutsu.
Kushina: Like her son, I like and dislike her at the same time. What don’t I like? She shares traits with her son that grate on me and there is a level of corniness to her backstory.
Samui’s Brother: I know his name, but yeah…
Kaguya: I once made a five-part series on why I didn’t like her. I might repost it at a later date. In short: Her character was barely developed and she lacked battle intelligence.
Boruto (pronounced “Bolt”): While it’s too early to give a final verdict on this kid, he reminds me of a young Konohamaru. Boruto comes off to me as self-entitled and spoiled.