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In Episode 4, we discussed the first 100 episodes of the Boruto series, but now I’ll be taking a deeper dive into the ‘main’ arcs in the anime and manga. In today’s episode, I’m discussing the Shin / Sarada Arc in the anime (or within Naruto Gaiden). The Shin Arc is one that brings back some older concepts from Naruto Shippuden and brings them to the forefront in Boruto.

THERE ARE SPOILERS IN THIS EPISODE AND IN THE SHOW NOTES

In this episode I will be discussing:

  • The relevance of pre-Boruto contexts
  • The Nature of Shin Uchiha
  • Naoki Koboyashi’s key animation in Sakura vs. Shin
  • How well does the Shin Arc perform as a whole and for the rest of the show?

MUSIC IN THIS PRODUCTION:

ChipScape by chasersgaming

Go Lucky by chasersgaming

Difference by chasersgaming

Mandatory Overtime by Joth

“Anomaly”
by Eric Matyas
www.soundimage.org

SOURCES IN THIS PRODUCTION:

BORUTO: NARUTO NEXT GENERATIONS (MYANIMELIST)

NAOKI KOBOYASHI (MYANIMELIST)

TWEET ON NAOKI KOBOYASHI AND WESTERN MOVIES (posted by @Ara3Wkm)

BORUTO ARCS (NARUTO WIKI)

SHOW NOTES

Plot Summary: After completing a mission and returning to Konoha, Sasuke witnesses the impossible; a being with the Sharingan Eye appears before him. Shin Uchiha possesses the Eye of the Uchiha, hence the reason why Sasuke investigates the problem. On the other side, Sarada feels increasingly lost, due to the consistent absence of her Father. She then decides to embark on a journey, alongside Naruto, to locate him.

The Nature of Shin: To the characters within the ‘Narutoverse’, Shin is a being that shouldn’t exist; this surprise plants a seed as to what else is out there (possibly content from the end of Naruto Shippuden). I found that the word ‘Shin’ (depending on the kanji being used) has multiple connotations, some of which give us a greater level of insight on his position. The word can be translated to mean ‘heart’ ‘progress’ or extent. This provides me with the impression that Shin to some extent is ‘beyond’ or even higher up on the evolutionary chain.

‘Hand Blurring’ & Sakura vs. Shin: Sakura versus Shin is my second favourite fight in the show and one of my favourites in the franchise, since from a technical standpoint, it gets very creative while still not straying too far from the style of other fights in the franchise. (SIDE THOUGHT: While writing this, I realised that the ‘style’ of fights in the Naruto franchise isn’t very defined, as there’s a lot of variation between, for arguments sake, Pain vs. Naruto, Killer Bee vs. Sasuke and Naruto & Sasuke vs. Momoshiki. With that being said, take my reference(s) to the conventional ‘style’ with a pinch of salt). One of the notable animators behind Sakura vs. Shin is Naoki Koboyashi who, according to MAL, has partook in various projects ranging from Kimi no Na Wa, Kizumonogatari II & III, Naruto: The Last

Movie, etc. Koboyashi appears to take inspiration from Western movies (the most fitting one in this case is Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)). The two things that I found fantastic about this fight was the emphasis on taijutsu (hence Koboyashi’s use of ‘hand blurring’ to highlight movement) alongside the use of the environment. The animator uses what makes the ice cavern and the characters so great as much as possible, making this fight a highlight for the franchise.

In summary, I am very happy with the Shin / Sarada Arc, as it opens something similar to ‘Pandora’s Box’ by demonstrating what is beyond the characters’ (and our) knowledge in this post-Naruto Shippuden world.

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