Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
by Amy McNulty,
How would you rate episode 107 of
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations ?
The road trip shenanigans continue this week as Mirai and company find themselves thrust into another misadventure. While visiting a small resort town, the gang discovers that an annual festival that's currently underway has bitterly divided the populace. Half believe the town owes its prosperity to a magical dog, while the other half believes a magical cat was the benefactor. This forms the basis for the aforementioned festival, wherein cat lovers and dog lovers divide the town down the middle and engage in heated competitions.
Soon after learning the town's history, Mirai finds that Kiba and his girlfriend, Tamaki (granddaughter of Nekobaa), have become the respective leaders of the dog and cat factions while on a day trip to the hot springs, resulting in a couple's spat. Reasoning that the sooner tensions cool around town, the sooner she'll be able to take a bath, Mirai engages in several unsuccessful attempts at getting them to make up. However, with the help of her parents' signature techniques and some timely interference from Guy, she's ultimately able to bring both the town and the feuding couple closer together.
So far, this arc appears to be a vehicle for both checking in with the previous generation's key players and providing Mirai with some much-needed character development, and episode 107 is able to deliver on both these fronts. Prior to this storyline, Mirai didn't really have much of a personality to speak of, and these past two episodes have given her more attention in this area than the previous 100+ installments combined. This week, for example, we get to see her sneaky side in full display. Even with the best of intentions, she meddles in affairs that aren't really her business, with her primary objective being to take a bath, not bring peace to a city. (Considering the city's denizens apparently get along well outside of festival day, any altruistic reasons for her wanting to put an end to the fighting go out the window.) This helps make her a fun character to follow—kindhearted but not perfect, with more of a mischievous side than either of her parents ever displayed onscreen.
On the elder front, it's nice to check in with Kiba. Despite being prominently featured in one of the Parent and Child Day episodes, Kiba hasn't received much screen time in this sequel series. However, since he's one of the few key players from the parent series without children or a job connected to the current generation of kids, it's easy to see why he's gotten the shaft. It's also revealed that he now works as an inspector for the Leaf's police force. (It's possible this has been mentioned before, but it sounded like new information to me.) This episode also provides Tamaki with her first extended appearance as an adult and gives the audience a look at the couple's overall dynamic, which is about as uneasy as one might expect, given both parties' favorite animals.
Another solidly comedy-focused installment, this week's episode advances Mirai's character development in ways that are both amusing and unexpected. Getting reacquainted with Kiba is fun, and the episode's premise proves to be the perfect backdrop for his lovers' quarrel with Tamaki. As things stand, this is shaping up to be Boruto's best Boruto-less arc yet.
Amy is an author who has loved anime for over two decades.
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