Is friendship eternal? As our heroes get closer to graduating from the ninja academy, questions like this become more and more common. Will they keep their close bonds, or will life take them in different directions? Remember, if you like this article and 5 Point Discussions, please share it on Facebook or Twitter! It really helps. And if you’ve got any comments or questions, please hit me up @SageShinigami.
1. So instead of focusing on graduation, Boruto spends most of this episode worried that his friends won’t be around forever. It’s an understandable concern, even if its a little misguided considering they’re all ninja from the same town and will have to constantly stay in touch with one another if they’re expected to stay up to date on missions affecting Konoha. Still, considering Boruto’s something of a blockhead it’s entirely possible that he wouldn’t be aware of something like that just yet.
But what really bugs me is that they don’t really sell the isolation that Boruto is clearly feeling this week. He’s mad because he doesn’t immediately run into his friends after he gets done with class, but they meet up with him at the burger joint they hang out at afterwards, barely a few minutes later. You would think the show would’ve made Boruto feel more alone by having his friends avoid him with more consistency in order to practice their teamwork or study for their finals, but nope. They’re just…kinda busy. Is the son of Konoha’s greatest ninja really so needy that he couldn’t understand that?
2. On the flipside, Sarada tries to be like an “adult” at the beginning of the episode by telling Boruto that friendship doesn’t really last forever. (Somewhat true.) It’s not until later in the episode when she winds up discussing the same question with her mother that it occurs to her that she was possibly misguided in her opinion to Boruto, as Sakura points out that all of the friends she made while in Ninja Academy are ones she still possesses in the present day.
This episode unfortunately continues the trend of Sarada not really being qualified to become the next Hokage, while Boruto in all honestly really isn’t qualified to be anything else. Sarada admires Naruto for being a person who genuinely believes that everyone in the village is his family, and thus people he has to protect and care for, but her actions don’t bare out any sort of emulation of what she admires. Instead she’s cold and logical, and more the type of person that a hot-headed Hokage like Boruto would need to balance him out and make him think about the facts and probabilities behind a situation. In this episode Boruto bends over backwards to get all of his friends together, encouraging a cameraderie that he hopes will last a life time. Meanwhile, Sarada’s character arc in this episode is realizing Boruto’s right and apologizing to him for trying to break his belief in lifelong friendships to begin with. If they’re building towards Sarada actually reaching her goal, she’s got a long way to go.
3. It’s comedic/slice of life-y episodes like this that lead to characters catching a beatdown in Death Battles. Despite showing us several arcs where things have been quite serious that our heroes were able to overcome, this episode sees Boruto and the rest of his class struggling just to reel a fish in out of the ocean. They combine multiple jutsus in order to pull it off, even though this excessively talented group of kids should’ve been able to do it without relying on anything other than a kunai dagger or three.
4. I debated whether or not I wanted to write about this episode, because there really isn’t much depth here. It’s a more complex version of a recap episode, as the characters talk about how their lives have changed in the past few months, showing various flashbacks and referencing prior episodes. Occasionally things like this are used in order to give animators time to come up with more material for future episodes, and really the only truly interesting thing is seeing how Boruto and Sarada view friendship, and the tease at the end referencing Toneri, the primary antagonist in Naruto: The Last.
5. Next Episode: Graduation is still coming up, and Boruto has no idea what his goals as a ninja should be! Meanwhile, the class as a whole reaches their biggest trial yet: parent-teacher conferences!
Sometimes you wonder if this series takes place in the same one as Naruto, which managed to make even getting a promotion into a life-or-death situation. But that’s what happens when the ninja of the prior generation work their hardest to create a peaceful era for their children.
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations is available for streaming on Hulu and Crunchyroll.