Both Naruto’s Itachi Uchiha and Villain To Kill’s Cassian Lee are heroes who are forced into becoming villains, but in very different ways.
Much like Naruto‘s Itachi Uchiha, hero Cassian Lee of Villain To Kill is forced to become a villain, but instead of having to embrace an evil persona to protect a family member as Itachi did, Cassian dies and is reborn in the body of a boy who’s destined to be a villain.
Itachi’s unfortunate fate is thrust upon him as a result of souring relations between his clan, the Uchiha, and the village of Konoha. When things get so out of hand that the Uchiha begin planning a coup d’état, Itachi feels compelled to work with the Konoha Council as a double agent to prevent what would inevitably lead to the outbreak of a world war. One of Konoha’s elders, Danzō Shimura, unfortunately, didn’t foresee the possibility of peace and presents Itachi with a brutally unorthodox ultimatum: allow the coup to unfold and witness his whole clan dying in the ensuing conflict or prevent war by slaughtering his clan himself and sparing his younger brother Sasuke. Itachi not only chose the latter but feels that the only way to atone for the sin of murdering his clan and family is for him to die at his younger brother’s hands. So Itachi embraces the persona of a villain, and everything he does from that moment on is in service of tormenting and compelling Sasuke to kill him to avenge his clan.
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In Villain to Kill, Cassian hates villains to such an extent that he takes his job of fighting against them as a Psyker to the extreme. The manga begins with him being reprimanded for utilizing excessive force during a mission after the villain began harming hostages. It doesn’t take long before Cassian gets entangled in an unfortunate predicament that would have resulted in his death if his friend Jeff hadn’t gotten involved. Right before Cassian’s death, Jeff gives Cassian a strange relic, causing the Psyker to reincarnate into the body of a boy named Kwon Kang-Woo. Unfortunately for Cassian, he soon learns that Kwon has been subjected to such intense bullying that he is destined to become the most powerful class of villains. In fact, Cassian reincarnates in Kwon while his head is being shoved into a toilet by his tormentors.
Cassian understandably doesn’t take the news very well that he has reincarnated as a villain seeing as he had dedicated his former life to fighting them. At least he isn’t doomed to face his fate alone. The relic Jeff provided him contains a noble soul from ancient times called Moros that guides him through this new hell. That’s when Cassian learns that, as Kwon was destined to become a villain, he, too, is susceptible to the extreme rage that plagues villains. Regardless, Cassian still possesses the same heroic values as he did before, so when he stumbles upon a hostage situation, he attempts to save them, risking the wrath of all villains, as they don’t take kindly to betrayal.
Both Itachi Uchiha from Naruto and Villain To Kill‘s Cassian Lee initially embody everything that constitutes a good guy but are thrust into situations that present them with no other choice but to become villains, much to their chagrin. Itachi Uchiha is first driven to embrace the persona of a villain out of love to protect his brother and later guilt to encourage that same brother to kill him as a way to atone for his sins. Meanwhile, Cassian is reincarnated into the body of a boy who’s destined to become a villain as a result of incessant bullying and who possesses all of the necessary traits that make his fate inevitable. Luckily, Itachi Uchiha is able to connect with his brother the moment before Sasuke kills him. Will Cassian be so lucky?
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