There have been few or even next to zero sequels to long running anime that have held my attention. In my opinion they never really tend to reach the same level of hype and quality that their predecessor achieved. So when I heard that Naruto, a long time favorite of mine, was receiving a sequel anime after its 500th episode finale, I was excited but also worried. In some cases it is best to just let the beloved anime die, with its legacy untarnished. I was afraid that ‘Boruto: Naruto Next Generations’ would smear that legacy. Do not get me wrong, I enjoyed the Boruto movie that released 2 years ago. Getting to see all of the characters from Naruto as adults, with kids and families was amazing. But giving the kids an anime made me uneasy to say the least. Ultimately I could not have been more wrong.
In its 31 episode run, ‘Boruto’ has proven to be one of the best all season anime to premiere in the past year. While it may cater to a younger generation, the feel and spirit of Naruto is still very much present. Characters like Sarada Uchiha, Shikadai Nara, Cho Cho Akamichi, Inojin Yamanaka, Metal Lee, Boruto Uzumaki and my personal favorite Mitsuki (son of Orichimaru… yes, that Orichimaru) they all give you reasons to be interested in them and learn more about them. While most of the kids are like there parents, others seem to have totally different personalities and goals that differ from their families. Sarada, who is the daughter of Sasuke and Sakura Uchiha, claims that she wants to be Hokage and follow the path of Naruto. While Boruto, son of Naruto and Hinata Uzumaki, hates his dad for never being home. So he wants to follow a path that differs from his fathers. Sarada is more like Naruto in her beliefs and Boruto is more like Sasuke in his. It is very cool to see how Masashi Kishimoto developed these characters the way that he did. It gives the series its own identity in a sense.
Now, the story of the anime takes place an unnumbered amount of months before ‘Boruto: Naruto the Movie’. The kids are just now starting at the ninja academy and learning what it means to be a shinobi. While Boruto is trying to navigate through his ninja path, events trigger things to happen within him. I will not spoil anything but the anime hints at a special power that only he has. Each conflict in every arc is so amazing. The character development is believable and deep, the animation for every major fight is top notch and drawn so beautifully and the story keeps you engaged every time. But like every major shounen anime, filler episodes make their appearance. Fear not, the filler is actually decent in this series so you do not need to skip it.
The current arc that just ended this past Wednesday was fantastic. The students took a field trip to the Hidden Mist Village, once known as the ‘Blood Mist Village’ to those who watched Naruto. This arc showcased an incredible story, interesting characters and amazing animation. Decedents of the ‘7 Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist’ were introduced as the main villains of the arc. Lead by Shizuma Hoshigaki (clan decedent of Kisame Hoshigaki) the new swordsmen look to return the village back to its blood mist days. Kagura (grandson of the brutal past Mizukage Yagura) is introduced and plays a huge roll in this arc as well. Boruto, Sarada and Mitsuki showcase their talents and display amazing jutsu during the final fights. I never expected Boruto to be that talented. Surpassing his father’s skill when he was child. Being able to use wind, water and lightning style.
Overall this is an anime you should tune in to. As the story draws closer to the ‘Boruto: Naruto the Movie’ content, you can expect the pace and action to pick up quickly. The villains they face in that arc are going to be on another level so you do not want to miss it. If you were a fan of Naruto and Naruto Shippuden then you will definitely enjoy this. Try your best to not compare it too much to Naruto because in the end ‘Boruto’ has its own identity and success now.
You can catch ‘Boruto: Naruto Next Generations’ every Wednesday on Crunchyroll. Subscribe for only $6 a month and receive all the anime you could want, hours after it airs in japan with full subs. Or watch without a subscription and endure a few ads. Support the industry and watch anime legally so we can continue watching the content we love.