5 Point Discussions – Boruto: Naruto Next Generations 75: “The Trials of Ryuchi Cave”

by Sage Ashford

Boruto-Next-Generations

Boruto undergoes the trials of the White Snake Cave.  Oh, and Sarada and the others are there too, I guess. 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. This episode reminds us why supposed “ninja graduates” always keep an actual adult around. After wandering around attempting to find the Ryuchi Cave for hours, the group starts to suffer from fatigue and hunger. Admittedly, Team 10 probably thought they’d shut Team 7 down in a couple hours and be back home for dinner, but what’s Boruto and Sarada’s excuse?  No one told them finding Mitsuki would be quick–neither of them thought to bring supplies?

This becomes important later, when the group finally reaches Ryuchi Cave, and it looks more like Goldpaw’s Lucky Star Casino than the location of an ancient sage. It’s this beautiful, ornate building where the group is welcomed in by a gorgeous attendant who offers them an entire buffet to feast off, and if any of that is setting off your “It’s a trap” sensors then congratulations, you’re used to watching anime!  Both ChoCho and Inojin are eager to chow down after having gone hours without food, while Boruto, Sarada, and Shikadai realize it’s probably not a good idea to take food from strangers.  Still, they all nearly go for it…until a casual slip by the attendant puts Boruto back on guard, as she mentions Mitsuki’s name–something none of the group brought up.  Realizing things are a trap, the illusion of the cave fades, revealing the food to be rotten and the attendant to be a creepy snake lady who was about to eat them all if they’d gone for the food.

Well, that’s unfortunate. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen too many more times, yeah?

2. After pushing through the first test, the group starts back on their journey through the cave only to wind up separated thanks to an abundance of Spooky Mist.  Boruto gets distracted by another attendant–this one younger and much more ethereal in nature, and winds up running smack into a different trap/”test”. This one’s a bit more obvious in nature–open the door by finding the right jewels to place in all its slots.

The penalty for losing is still the same as before: fail the test, get eaten. Though while the last attendant enjoys the taste of fresh chakra, this one prefers chakra from one on the verge of death itself. Of course, since Boruto’s a Shonen Protagonist that’s essentially like asking Superman not to save the world or asking John Cena not to Overcome the Odds, so this test actually winds up being easier than the last one. The trick winds up being forcing the gate to open by breaking one of the jewels and forcing it to fit in the last slot. That solution’s so absurdly easy I was wondering why the others weren’t being tested, then realized even if they were it probably took them about as much time to figure it out, so why waste time showing it?

3. Before Boruto can even celebrate surviving someone’s creepy vore hentai though, he gets sneak attacked! The third attendant bites him, causing him to suffer an oddly specific delusion in which all of his friends confront him with the deepest, darkest doubts in his mind about having been a garbage friend to Mitsuki. This was probably the “best” of these tests, as they forced Boruto to deal head on with the most important questions of this arc: what if this is Mitsuki’s will? What if he doesn’t want to come back? Why didn’t you notice any of Mitsuki’s feelings to begin with?

Fortunately, Boruto pushes past this as well, surviving the despair deep in his heart and narrowly avoiding being eaten once again. Okay, after all three of these women have unashamedly tried to chow down on our cast, I really hope this arc doesn’t end with the group making friends with them. I love shonen’s ability to make so many characters redeemable, but….ick. Who wants to relate to something that sees you as food?

4. Finally the group is allowed to come face to face with the White Snake Sage, an old woman who seems puzzled someone made it so far to see her. Apparently, most of the people who visit are consumed with the desire to gain her power–something Boruto and others note numerous times they don’t even want–and wind up getting eaten.

And of course, since it can’t be as simple as just asking her to read the snake’s mind, the group gets assigned yet another quest: attain a reverse scale from a giant snake deeper inside the cave, in order to calm it down. Why do I get the feeling the White Snake Sage can’t read the snake’s mind either? As the group leaves, the Sage even says she basically sent them on a suicide mission–how absurd would it be if they got back and she straight up told them “what you want is impossible”? No wonder Orochimaru was a jerk for so long–the other sages were obnoxious, but this group appears to consist of duplicitous cannibals; he’s lucky to be as balanced as he is.

5. Next Episode: The group’s being sent on a mission to find this giant snake and attain it’s reverse scale.  But there’s still one question on my mind: where’s Mitsuki? Last episode at least gave us a glimpse of where he’s been, but this episode he was completely MIA. On top of that, we don’t look any closer to a conclusion than we were last week, so I guess we should settle in, because this arc might just be a while.

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations is available for streaming on Crunchyroll and Hulu.

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