Boruto, Sarada, and Mitsuki go on their first mission as genin! “It’s just a D-Rank, so how hard could it be…?” 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. It feels a little weird for Boruto to be getting missions directly from the Hokage himself, I think. You’d almost think it was preferential treatment until you see how this episode actually goes down. At any rate, this week’s episode is going to feel fairly familiar to a lot of long-time Naruto fans, as they go over how mission structure works for villages in terms of clients, difficulty levels and the like. They keep it light, without a lot of navel-gazing, with the exception of Hinata explaining to her son that missions were much more dangerous when she was that age, before sending the group off. Of course, they’re not the only ones that are on their first mission…
2. Team 10’s Ino-Shika-Cho goes on their first mission this episode too: assigned to guard an older woman…while she goes shopping? The thing about young ninja is that D-Rank missions can often be all manner of tasks, many of which won’t even require them to leave the village. If the client is capable of paying for the task, then it’s something the village has to see taken care of, even if its incredibly trivial. In this case, it’s an older woman who just needs a few chumps big, strong ninja to carry her things while she enjoys a shopping spree. She even hits it off with ChoCho, giving her a new friend! It seems absurd, but even in the real world people who aren’t in any real danger often have security for their trite lives–embarrassing as it might be to be used as a status symbol, a job’s a job one supposes.
3. When Konohamaru and Team 7 arrive, the initial mission is something fairly simple–a village under attack from neighboring villages due to a shortage in supplies in their area needs help dispatching their foes. But by the time the group has arrived, things have completely changed.
Whoever’s working to harm the village have hired ninja themselves, and they seem to be taking things much more seriously than the Konoha village is, because they’ve sent actual adults to handle the job. Boruto finds one of them stabbing a member of the village and stops them, ending up in a one-on-one that nearly gets his throat slit before Konohamaru comes to defend him. This scuffle only lasts seconds before another ninja arrives to allow his partner the time to escape. It looks like the group’s intel wasn’t as on-point as it needed to be, which creates a different set of problems.
Really, I can’t believe this idea got past the planning stages. It’s literally Naruto’s first mission with some things swapped around a bit. It starts out as a D-Rank mission that should be fairly simple, but immediately becomes more serious with the addition of enemy ninja, turning it into a mission that should definitely not be handled by mere genin. There’s even a freaking bridge involved! Yeah, last time it was the team guarding a bridge builder, and this time it’s over the rights to a bridge but that’s just splitting hairs. Didn’t anyone think they should maybe alter things just slightly in order to make it not look like this series isn’t a cheap echo of Naruto?
The only thing here is we’ll get to see how Boruto and the others handle things–they’re much better trained and exponentially more capable than any single member of Team 7 was back then. Sarada already has her Sharingan, Boruto has much better and finer control of his chakra, and Mitsuki’s basically a Chuunin already in ability.
I’ll only let this off the hook if this was Naruto’s plan the entire time–a lesson to teach Boruto just how serious ninja missions are and that none of them should ever be taken lightly. That would actually be exceptionally smart.
4. As it turns out, the head of the village has been betrayed by her own subordinates. The purpose of that remains unclear, but if I had to guess it would be to take the power to run the village from her. After all, she just recently took over running the village from her father after he “mysteriously” died. Of course, not long after that the attacks on their home began which makes all of this easy to figure out: some elder wanted the power he’d been denied and when he didn’t get it he decided it’d be better to harm his own home. Eeesh, what a jerk.
This felt like a good bit. The enemy ninja recognize the Konoha head band and retreat, because they realize that higher-level ninja from that village would wreck them in a one-on-one. Of course, they don’t know that only Konohamaru was around from back then, but they err on the side of caution and choose a different path.
Using a bit of genjutsu on people in the town, they cause a riot while setting a building in the village on fire. With this distraction, they manage to kidnap the leader of the town. Uh-oh.
5. Next Episode: With the leader of the village kidnapped and the team up against much older, more experienced ninja, this mission has taken a turn for the worse. Can Konohamaru and the others get it together without allowing anyone in their group to come to serious harm?
This mission has gone pear-shaped so fast that I’m not sure they ever had it under control in the first place. This series is starting to feel like Naruto again, but not necessarily in a way that most viewers will be comfortable with. Still, repetition isn’t always bad, and seeing how this improved version of Team 7 handles problems compared to how the originals did might be entertaining…at least for awhile.
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations is available on Crunchyroll and Hulu.