Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
by Amy McNulty,
How would you rate episode 147 of
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations ?
In the aftermath of Team 7's latest adventure, Mujo recovers from his health ordeal and resumes his duties as castle lord, Boruto and company resume their daily lives, and Kokuri sets off to start a new life after giving the Hidden Leaf a treasure trove of valuable info on the Mujina Gang. The most useful piece of intel concerns Shojoji, the gang's leader, and his mastery of the Corpse Clone jutsu—a technique that enables him to take over the bodies of people he kills. In the end, Kokuri makes his way to the Mujina Gang's hideout and reveals himself to be none other than Shojoji. Apparently, he'd been inhabiting Tsukiyo's body but switched to Kokuri when both men were underwater. Although he realizes this incident was far from a win, Shojoji closes out the episode by proclaiming that luck will once again smile on him.
The fight against Tsukiyo not only offers up some solid action, it also provides Kokuri with a number of chances to be more than just dead weight. (That being said, had this fight been played out across multiple episodes, it's easy to see Tsukiyo's technique wearing thin.) While it is kind of strange that Kokuri is the only person who notices that the shadow clones are vulnerable to light—Sarada and/or Mitsuki should have been able to easily figure that out—it feels incredibly gratifying to see the entire group play a role in taking down their foe. Similarly, Tsukiyo, who's supposedly a formidable shinobi, failing to anticipate Kokuri's plan despite seeing him climb a spotlight tower feels a bit off. Despite these minor nitpicks, the gang's ability to think on their feet and function as a cohesive unit makes for an entertaining battle, and even though Team 7 has vanquished far more powerful foes in the past, Tsukiyo manages to present enough of a threat that their victory still feels earned.
The big twist is reasonably surprising, although as soon as Sai mentions the Corpse Clone jutsu, he kind of gives away the game. The basic mechanics of the technique are kind of vague, though this may be intentional. For example, if Shojoji had been inhabiting Tsukiyo's corpse via ninjutsu, shouldn't the Celestial Prison have reacted to this? Also, why did he kill his second-in-command? Since shinobi in the Naruto-verse can instantly change into other people with relatively little effort, isn't this technique somewhat superfluous? Still, since Shojoji is clearly being teased as a future antagonist, it's possible that all these questions will be answered down the line. While it's sad that the kindhearted Kokuri is actually dead, the young genin's ignorance of this development ensures that their confidence won't be shaken. Moving forward, it'll be interesting how they'll react if/when they discover the ruse.
Though this arc stumbled a little at times, overall, it was a consistently entertaining ride that offered up plenty of intrigue and excitement. The downer ending is a particularly memorable twist that paints all of Team 7's efforts to protect Kokuri in a depressing new light, and given what a gut-punch Kokuri's death was, I wouldn't be opposed to a few weeks of the show's lighter side.
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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