I'm not sure, but I'd think it'd be a mix of both. Naruto is in it's own universe.
Does anyone know when Naruto is supposed to take place? They do have movie theaters and snack foods and casinos, but i never see stuff like cars, computers, televisions, etc on there, so is it supposed to take place in the past or the modern day?
Maybe this just isn't a cartoon where the time period is straight. Like the videogame ,Tales of Symphonia. It had both ancient and futuristic elements to it but I loved it anyway. Or in Naruto's case, their villages may stick to the old ways while far off people are going by modern things like phones and cars and such.
Naruto author/creator Masashi Kishimoto actually addressed this issue in an interview in Shonen Jump:
So there you go.SJ: One thing I love about Naruto is how it's hard to tell when things take place. People wear slippers but then there are zippers in their clothes and they have telephone poles. What are the things we'll never see in Naruto - computers, guns, planes?
Kishimoto: I haven't really made up those specific rules, so there may be airplanes and some other vehicles, but absolutely no guns. Bullets fly at supersonic speeds, so there's no way that your shuriken could compete. As for computers, maybe, but they'd be low processing computers.
Kishimoto: Yeah, maybe eight-bit, definitely not sixteen-bit.
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Anyway,I think what Kishimoto is saying,is that no real time period in Naruto,It's just gonna move along with whatever It needs.
Then agian,that's already been said.
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9/25/2011 - 5:31pm EST
http://www.enotes.com/skin-our has to say about the time period in which it is set: "Disrupting traditional notions of linear time, Wilder's play tells the story of the twentieth-century American Antrobus family in three acts which recount such epochal events as the onset of the Ice Age, the start of Great Flood, and the end of the Napoleonic Wars. Ending exactly as it began, the play illustrates the cyclical nature of existence, celebrating humanity's resilience, inventiveness, and will to survive."
That being said, I don't think you can quite compare the two; it sounds like what the creator of Naruto is saying is that Naruto exists in a timeline of it's own. In other words, like many fantasy/sci-fi stories, it exists in it's own universe. That universe may look a lot like the one we know; things may have the same names and behave in a similar fashion, but other things may behave very differently. Where Naruto is, is a different place from where we are. Consequently, we can't really place him in our own timeline or history.
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Semi OT, but one thing I never got from that Kishimoto interview is the gun comment. I mean we know characters like Gai or Kakashi can move faster then a gun and say Shuriken someone from behind, so why bother saying guns wouldn't put in like they'd be too "cheap" in the universe or something? Also there a gun in the original version of Naruto too so why change it for the actual Narutoverse?
I think that comment was brought up In Naruto abridged too when being confused if they were in the past or the present. I'd have to say it's just an alternate universe with it's own time line since it's got too weird a mix of technology and olden equipment at the same time to be considred taking place at any place in "our" universe. Or even any regular offshoot of said universe.
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...... The same talkbacks you saw me do last year but with new episodes.
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It's hard to suggest, Maybe the 1990's maybe?
There's no real answer, it's in it's own time.
As far as technology, it's basically modern but without anything that would make ninjas obsolete (guns, etc). For example, in one of the movies they have trains, and they're also shown to have stuff like refrigerators and television screens. I think in one of the games Naruto had a video game system or something (not cannon, I know). And...
The world's 225 richest people now have a combined wealth of $1 trillion. That's equal to the combined annual income of the world's 2.5 billion poorest people.
Something to think about.
I'm watching that movie on CN right now about the land of snow, and it's basically looking like they're in the modern day, except people in the cities and what not view the ninja like the Amish, somewhat. They do their own thing out in the country and shirk the stuff of the modern world, except when some of them cheat.
Kishi said that it was a mix, but no definite time period. It's sort of like DB, but with less technology.
I'd say that Naruto is one of those series that doesn't really set itself at any time in world history. On the outside it looks like 19th-century Japan, and yet we see things like bags of potato chips and ramen stands like in modern times, and as I'm rewatching the Ninja Clash in the Land of Snow movie, we know that the country has a thriving film industry.
We don't even know if it takes place in Japan or not. They don't really specify a certain country, just "Hidden Leaf Village", "Hidden Sound Village" and all the rest of it.
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