Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Episode 10

by Amy McNulty,

How would you rate episode 10 of
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations ?

The plot thickens as additional light is shed on the overarching mystery in this week's Boruto: Naruto Next Generations. With Boruto and his father running concurrent investigations into the unseen enemy, our heroes are now several steps closer to getting to the bottom of the Hidden Leaf's recent rash of possessions and chakra drains. At the rate things are going, the culprit may be revealed by the conclusion of the current cour. While far from the show's most action-packed installment, episode 10 reveals a wealth of pertinent information while ushering the story into its next phase.

Determined to unmask the mysterious enemy (whom he now calls “The Ghost”) before his father, Boruto begins skipping school with Shikadai and Mitsuki in favor of solving the mystery. However, after Hinata and Shino catch wind of this, the latter decides to throw Boruto a bone by allowing him and his friends to shadow Tayori Kuroyagi, a local postman, for the class's career week. This will enable the boys to scope out the village for signs of The Ghost without racking up truancies. (It's fun to see Tayori tongue-tied around Naruto, even if just for a moment. As the show is told from the point of view of a member of the Uzumaki family, it's easy to forget that many people still view Naruto as a celebrity and hero.)

Meanwhile, while investigating the site of a recent possession, Sai spots signs that a wood user was on the scene. This leads him to recall a top-secret branch of the Foundation that used the Hashirama Cell to research a device that can extract a person's chakra. As he reveals to Naruto and Shikamaru, this particular branch specialized in military weaponry. The next morning, yet another Ghost incident occurs—this time at the village's water treatment plant, where Sumire and two other Academy students are spending career week. As Boruto, Shikadai, and Mitsuki rush to the scene, it's revealed that the plant has sustained substantial damage—and Sumire is lying unconscious at the heart of the wreckage.

In works of fiction that feature children taking it upon themselves to solve mysteries, parents and assorted authority figures tend to be relentlessly skeptical and unsupportive, and it's refreshing to see that tired trope ignored here. (Granted, the adults in this show witnessed much stranger things than this in their youth.) If anything, the grownups have been very supportive, with Shino going so far as to revise his lesson plan to help Boruto and company continue their investigation. However, going off the preview, it appears that Naruto will try to take his son off the case next week in light of what happened to Sumire.

Although this particular episode feels more like a setup for a grander confrontation and is far less self-contained than previous installments, episode 10 does a solid job of balancing plot progression with comedy and bits of intrigue. At the beginning of the season, the show seemed poised to continue with its victim-of-the-week formula for the foreseeable future, but with so many clues now laid out, it's already set to reveal The Ghost's true identity. Even though last week's next-episode preview kind of spoiled it, the Foundation's potential involvement proves genuinely surprising, if a bit convoluted.

Like the past couple installments, episode 10 continues to propel the story ahead in an organic fashion. With possessions and chakra drains now occurring on a daily basis, the show can't comfortably return its previous formula. Whether this mystery is solved within the next few weeks or lingers for a bit longer, next week's episode is bound to at least up the stakes.

Rating: B+

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.

Amy is an author who has loved anime for over two decades.

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