Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Episode 79

by Amy McNulty,

How would you rate episode 79 of
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations ?

The gang faces two harrowing battles and gets hit with a shocking revelation in an action-packed Boruto: Naruto Next Generations. While engaged in battle with Kokuyou, Boruto's group is joined by Cho-Cho and Inojin, who arrive just in time to lend a hand. Ino-Shika-Cho then advise Boruto and Sarada to continue their pursuit of Mitsuki while they keep Kokuyou busy. Hoping to head them off, Sekiei entrusts a couple of Akuta with guarding Mitsuki, intercepts Boruto and Sarada, and engages them in combat. Although he initially has the upper hand, Sekiei eventually depletes his energy, but just as Boruto is about to deal the finishing blow, he's stopped by Mitsuki, who helps his new “friend” to his feet and guides him to safety. To further punctuate his point, Mitsuki slaps away the forehead protector Boruto attempts to hand him, hits Boruto with a burst of Snake Lightning, and leaves with Sekiei and Kokuyou. Upon seeing how thoroughly defeated Boruto is, Kokuyou calls him a husk and reasons that he's not even worth killing.

This week's installment serves as the current arc's most action-packed installment to date. While Kokuyou and Sekiei are far from the most creative villains the franchise has given us, their signature techniques are unique enough to prove entertaining and put Boruto and company through their paces. Consistently on-point visuals and reasonably fluid animation also help make this battle-heavy episode a fun ride from start to finish. Also of note is that our heroes lose both of this week's big fights, illustrating that the current crop of Genin have a long way to go before they're ready for the big leagues. In all likelihood, Mitsuki is running a long con on the Hidden Stone shinobi in an effort to learn who their boss is, but seeing Boruto at such a low point will hopefully make the eventual payoff feel all the more rewarding.

Sekiei's blooming friendship with Mitsuki is proving to be one of the most fascinating aspects of this storyline. Like Mitsuki, Sekiei is somewhat socially oblivious while also being good-natured and energetic, making them a natural pairing. Although Mitsuki's loyalties are probably still to the Leaf, it's hard to believe that he isn't becoming fond of Sekiei on some level. On the flipside, Boruto and Garaga have yet to fully work out their differences, with the latter stubbornly refusing to assist his summoner until the absolute last second. Predictably, the giant snake gloats after Mitsuki coldly rejects Boruto's olive branch, though he seems slightly hesitant to do so. (He also doesn't make good on his vow to eat Boruto in the event that Mitsuki chooses the Stone shinobi over him.)

Now that we're fully into this arc's third act, it would be great to see more episodes like this one. After devoting a significant number of episodes to outlining the stakes and core mystery, the time has come to get to the bottom of the villains' scheme and lay the smackdown on the mastermind. While episode 79 hardly breaks new ground in the shonen action department, it's an above-average battle episode that leaves the audience eager to see what comes next.

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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