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Monday, August 18, 2008

Hyuga Neji

Neji Hyuga (日向ネジ, Hyūga Neji) is a branch member of the famed Hyuga clan. He had a grudge towards everyone in the main branch. He is a natural genius, surpassing those of the main branch. When Neji is first introduced, he has an air of superiority about him, strongly believing that everyone is resigned to their fate. However, after battling with Naruto Uzumaki, Neji finally changes his outlook on the world.

Neji has a large knowledge of his Byakugan, a bloodline limit Kekkei Genkai that allows its user to have an unobstructed view of the world around him (an almost 360 degree vision with in part 1 a 50m radius and in part 2 a 1000m radius). It can see through any solid object and can see the chakra points of a person, and using his Gentle Fist, a style that pushes chakra out of ones hand, can effectively control the flow of chakra within an foe. After the Preliminaries of the Chunin Exams, he learned in the period of one month Eight Trigrams Palms Heavenly Spin, a technique where one ejects chakra out of all 361 of their chakra points and spins like a top, creating a barrier of impenetrable chakra around ones body.


Not much is known about Neji's birth. After his cousin Hinata from the main branch had her 3rd birthday, Neji was taken by Hiashi Hyuga and had the Hyuga branch family seal applied to his forehead. This disability of the branch family is the cause for Neji's hatred towards the Main branch and towards Hinata. Neji has also labeled himself "a caged bird" to the main house.

Neji is a member of Team Guy and is a close combat style team, with Might Guy, the Jonin leader, himself and his teammate Rock Lee being taijutsu specialist, while the last member Tenten is a weapon specialist. By then, Neji is considered the top Genin in Konohagakure. Neji believes that Lee cannot defeat him, but gets along somewhat better with Tenten, noting that she did her best against Temari.

[edit] Personality

While under the belief that his father died because he was a member of the branch house, Neji concludes that fate is something decided at birth and that no matter what one does, people cannot escape their destiny. Neji often applies this to people he views as weaker than he is, particularly his teammate Lee and his cousin Hinata Hyuga. He dismisses Lee's dream of becoming a great ninja despite his inability to mold chakra as hopeless, and suggests that Lee can never defeat him. As they grow as a team, he takes account to Lee's abilities and has faith in him. Still his ideals don't change.

During his match in the Chunin Exams, he tells Hinata that she is unfit to be a ninja due to being too kind and not confident enough. When she is eventually able to turn his philosophy against him, telling him that she believes that he is suffering from trying to become worthy of the main house despite his being born into the branch family, Neji becomes enraged and attempts to attack Hinata. However, he is stopped by multiple Jonin before he can land a blow that would have almost certainly killed her. While Hinata is left near death after the battle, Neji's only concern is that he could not complete his attack. He disregards Hinata's personal growth in the match, concluding that because she was defeated, "a failure will always be a failure."

Neji displays similar efforts to condescend others during his match with Naruto Uzumaki who, despite being repeatedly struck down, continues to try and fight him. While Neji tries to show Naruto that fate cannot be fought and that someone who is weak will always remain weak, Naruto is unwilling to accept this mindset, arguing that Neji, for all his belief in fate, has not accepted his own destiny. Naruto taps into the power of the demon fox sealed within him and fights Neji, regaining his access to his chakra. Using a shadow clone to feign defeat, Naruto surprises and defeats Neji. With this defeat and kind words from Naruto, Neji decides he would try to overcome his destiny.

With this example of overcoming "destiny" as well as finding out the truth about his father's death soon afterwards, Neji abandons the concept of inescapable fate. No longer bound by the idea that he is stuck at his current status, Neji resolves to become strong enough to never again lose a battle. To do so he begins putting more emphasis on working well with his team, and starts to value a mission's successful completion and his teammates' safety over his own betterment. In addition, Neji begins trying to remedy the estranged relations between himself and the main house members, most particularly by being kinder to Hinata. His efforts seem to be effective, as he begins training with Hiashi and in Part II even starts to wear traditional Hyuga robes. As another result of his loss against Naruto, Neji no longer thinks of people as failures who can never change, as he suggests that he would not have persevered in Lee's situation, and believes that if Lee works hard enough, he can surpass the gifted. Neji is glad Naruto was able to influence him to change.

[edit] Part I

[edit] Chunin Exams

Neji first meets Team 7 in the exam hallway, demanding to know who Sasuke is and acting somewhat condescendingly toward him. He obtains the answers to the first phase of the test by using his Byakugan to read other examinees' tests by seeing through the person's body.

When the team went into the Forest of Death, Neji and his team had to gather either a heaven or an earth scroll and make it to the center tower in a week. At about the second or third day into the second part, the cell decides to split up to search for suitable targets. Lee went off and he found Team 7, and defended the disabled team from the Sound genin. When Neji and Tenten met back to report, Lee had not returned. They quickly went after Lee and found the taijutsu expert wounded. They refrained from entering the fight, since Sasuke was about to enter the first stage of the cursed seal. Once they recovered the wounded Lee, Neji's team left the scene, and they managed to pass the second part some time afterwards.

To decrease the number of genin participating the the exam finals, one-on-one matches were organized to eliminate the weaker genin. Neji was paired up against Hinata. His attitude towards Hinata angers Naruto, who cheers for the kunoichi. Although Hinata seemed to defeat Neji, Neji reveals to Hinata that he has plugged off Hinata's chakra points, rendering her Gentle Fist useless. He also hit a chakra point close to one of Hinata's vitals moments before, putting Hinata in critical condition. However, Hinata refuses to back down, insisting that Neji, not she, was fighting against what could not be changed. Neji was about to administer a killing blow when the jonin Kakashi Hatake, Hayate, Kurenai, and Might Guy steps in to save the wounded shinobi. After the fight, Naruto swipes up some of Hinata's blood, which she had coughed up due to the damage near her vitals, and swears to defeat Neji. Neji also tells Naruto to give up, since there was no way for him to defeat the Hyuga, using "fate" as his reasoning.

Neji is pitted against Naruto in the first rounds of the finals. Although Neji soon gains the advantage and cuts off Naruto's chakra flow, Naruto is determined to fight against Neji, inspired by Hinata and Lee's bravery and angered by the way Neji belittled and almost killed Hinata. Naruto taps into the power of the nine-tailed fox, and is able to keep up with Neji for a time. Neji's Heavenly Spin protects him from Naruto's attacks, but when he approaches a supposedly defeated Naruto, Naruto pops out of a tunnel he dug in the ground, and uppercuts Neji in the jaw, defeating him.

Neji is angry with himself for falling for Naruto's signature technique, but Naruto reveals that the technique used to be his worst one, and that he only became good at it through practice. Neji then hears of his father's fate from his uncle, and breaks down in tears. When Hiashi bows before Neji in forgiveness, Neji asks him to rise, and forgives him. Neji then silently tells his father that wishes to change his destiny just like he did, and that he hopes to never lose again.

[edit] Sasuke Retrieval Arc

Neji was recruited as part of the five-man team to retrieve Sasuke from the Sound Four. Neji's opponent was Kidomaru, who was able to analyze his defenses and find his weaknesses. Neji realized that Kidomaru was far more powerful than he was, and that he was in the same situation that Lee, Hinata and Naruto had been in. Neji was determined never to give up, though, as he wanted to show those who considered him a genius that their faith in him was correct, and to prove that he no longer surrendered to fate. Neji was severely wounded when Kidomaru converts his cursed seal mark to level 2, allowing him to fire arrows at impossibly fast speeds. The arrow was connected to a string, which was directly controlled by Kidomaru. Neji took that to his advantage and channeled chakra through the string, combining the chakra with his Gentle Fist's chakra abilities, and killed Kidomaru with that method. Although he was near death after the battle, he was saved with the help of Shizune and other medical ninja.

[edit] Neji and the Destiny

Neji always thought that fate is something decided at birth and that no matter what one does, people cannot escape their destiny. He always counted seven birds out of eight, which symbolizes the fact that destiny isn't something that is decided and can be changed by yourself. He failed to recognize this and that is what caused him to fall into the darkness and miss the last bird which caused him to lose to Naruto. When he finally realized that people can change their destiny, he was lifted from the darkness and was ultimately able to see the eighth and final bird and was able to defeat Kidomaru.

[edit] Filler Arcs

In the filler arcs, it is shown that Neji's relationship with the main house is improving. He commonly trains with his uncle Hiashi, and is kinder and more polite to Hinata, sparring with her shortly before Naruto leaves.

Neji is commonly the team leader for Team Guy when Guy is absent, and is more cautious and pragmatic than Naruto is. This is especially seen in the Hidden Star Village arc, in which Neji suggests that he and the others should concern themselves with finding the star, rather than with the potential dangers the star training has to the children. When the villagers confront Akahoshi, Neji initially refuses to get involved, and when Naruto attacks Akahoshi after Akahoshi disables Naruto's teammates with an attack, he tells Naruto that he will deny knowing anything about what Naruto did. Despite saying this, when Tsunade reprimands the group for Naruto's destroying the star to defeat Akahoshi, Neji accepts responsibility as team leader. In the Menma arc, he suspects that Menma is a Sound ninja, and while testing the theory, learns of Menma's incredible speed. His suspicions are confirmed in part when it is revealed that Menma is part of a bandit clan, but Menma remains on Naruto's side and sacrifices himself to save a town from bandits.

[edit] Part II

Neji in Part II.
Neji in Part II.

Over the timeskip, Neji retook the Chunin Exam and passed, and later was promoted to Jonin rank, being the only genin from Konoha to achieve this during the timeskip. He makes his first appearance when Tsuande requests that Team Guy travel to Land of Wind to aid Team Kakashi

[edit] Rescue Gaara Arc

During their traveling the team is met by Pakkun who redirects them to the Akatsuki hideout in the land of river, however when Zetsu sees them, they are quickly encountered by Kisame Hoshigaki, who is later revealed to be a clone.

During Team Guy's battle with Kisame's clone, Neji was successful in freeing himself, Tenten and Lee from Kisame's water prisons. While Naruto and Kakashi pursued Deidara and Chiyo and Sakura fought Sasori, Neji fought a clone of himself, created by his removing the seals to the Akatsuki hideout.

In the anime, Lee realizes that the clones do not tire and the only way to defeat them is to become stronger. Neji recalls that Team Guy's goal is to constantly become stronger, and notes that he will not simply be content with being a Jonin. He defeats his clone with a point blank range version of Eight Trigrams Empty Palm and chases after Deidara with his team. Guy carries a weakend Kakashi on their way back to Konoha by piggyback. Observing this Lee tries to convince Neji to ride on Lee's back and Neji replies back "Oh hell no/Absolutely not!".

[edit] Abilities

Neji's Byakugan
Neji's Byakugan

As a member of the Hyuga clan, Neji possesses the Byakugan, which gives him an almost 360-degree field of vision, save for a small blindspot at the back of the neck. Neji is acutely aware of his blind spot and takes extra caution in keeping it away from opponents as well as paying close attention to it. While the Byakugan naturally has only a 50 meter field of vision, Neji is able to increase the range of its sight several times over by the start of Part II, to around 1000 meters. He is noted to have a particularly strong Byakugan in comparison to other members of the clan, perhaps surpassing all of them.

With the rest of Team Guy's taijutsu skills, Neji's Byakugan also allows him to specialize in the Gentle Fist fighting style, which enables him to damage an opponent's chakra circulatory system and inner organs directly with even a slight tap. Neji also uses this technique to attack his opponents heart directly and send them into cardiac arrest resulting in the death of the opponent with but a single strike. His strength and brutality in this area are such that four Jonin—Might Guy, Kakashi Hatake, Kurenai, and Hayate—felt the need to intervene when he was on the verge of killing Hinata during the Chunin exams.

Since his time in the Ninja Academy, Neji has been held to be a natural genius, even becoming the top-ranked rookie in his class. As a member of the Hyuga clan's branch house, Neji is forbidden to learn the clan's secret techniques, but has managed to deduce their workings simply through observation. Since mastering these jutsu, Neji has begun to refine and strengthen them for more specialized needs. He has learned many of these techniques, such as Eight Trigrams Palms Heavenly Spin. In the anime, the fruits of his efforts are first seen during the Sasuke Retrieval arc where he uses Eight Trigrams One Hundred Twenty-Eight Palms (八卦百二十八掌, Hakke Hyaku Nijūhachi Shō), essentially a doubled version of the Sixty-Four Palms technique, to strike numerous targets at once. In Part II he also develops the Eight Trigrams Empty Palm (八卦空掌, Hakke Kūshō), a more focused version of the Heavenly Spin, with which he can expel chakra from his palm to attack opponents out of his physical reach. In the Rescue Gaara arc, Neji also displays his ability when he uses Eight Trigrams Mountain Crusher (八卦破山撃, Hakke Hazangeki) which is essentially a version of the Eight Trigrams Empty Palm that is used at point blank range, to defeat his enemy. While most of the former Konoha Genin become Chunin over the timeskip, Neji is the only one to become a Jonin.

[edit] Quotes

  • "Byakugan!"
  • "You're a failure."
  • "It's your destiny to lose to me."
  • "Do you understand now? You have no way of beating me!"
  • "Because saved me from the darkness."
  • "I have no blind spots."
  • "Oh hell no!",(right after Lee tells him to get on his back).

[edit] Other Media

[edit] Trivia

  • Despite fan pairings of Neji and Hinata they are not genetically cousins. Because their fathers are identical twins, genetically they are half brother and half sister.
Facts about Neji HyugaRDF feed
Age 13 -14
  • Part II: 16-17 +
Birthdate July 3 +
Blood type O +
Gender Male +
Height 165.1 cm (1.651 m, 5.417 ft, 65 in) +
Weight 46.8 kg (103.176 lb) +

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