Naruto is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Masashi Kishimoto. It tells the story of Naruto Uzumaki, a young ninja who dreams of becoming the Hokage, the leader of his village, known as the Village Hidden in the Leaves. The story is told in two parts: the first is set in Naruto's pre-teen years, and the second is in his teenage years. Naruto is one of the most successful manga series of all time. The Naruto manga dominated the market and its success was so overwhelming that it affected the sales of other manga series. Due to this undisputed success, it became one of the Big Three of its community.
The manga was adapted into an anime television series that broadcasted 220 episodes in Japan from 2002 to 2007; the English dub of the series aired on Cartoon Network and YTV from 2005 to 2009. Naruto: Shippuden, the sequel to the original series, premiered in Japan in 2007, and ended in 2017 with 500 episodes. The English dub was broadcast on Disney XD from 2009 to 2011. Besides the anime series, Pierrot has developed eleven movies and twelve original video animations (OVAs). Other Naruto-related merchandise includes light novels, video games, and trading cards developed by several companies.
Naruto is a story of a young ninja, Naruto Uzumaki, who is the protagonist of the series. The series takes the viewers on a journey where they get to see and experience the adventures and challenges that Naruto faces on his journey to becoming a great shinobi. One of the major reasons behind Naruto’s extravagant success is its unique world which captivated its fans.
Naruto is a young kid, hailing from the Village Hidden in the Leaves. Naruto was born on October 10, the day when a chakra beast, known as the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox, wreaked havoc on the Hidden Leaf and claimed many lives. Like many others, Naruto lost his parents and grew up as an orphan. But unlike others, Naruto was special. Minato Namikaze, the Fourth Hokage, saved the village from the Demon Fox’s rampage by sealing it inside the newborn Naruto.
Despite the fact that the Fourth Hokage wished for Naruto to be considered the Hero who saved the village, the citizens of the village feared the child. They saw Naruto as nothing more than a beast who could lose control at any moment, as they feared the beast sealed inside of him. Due to this, Naruto grew up all alone, without parental love or any friends whatsoever. But this would not make him turn to the dark path. He dedicated his life to growing up to become a great ninja and to becoming Hokage, the highest authority in the Hidden Leaf Village. He believed that if he became Hokage, everyone would be left with no choice but to acknowledge him.
The Naruto series also addresses many psychological and philosophical points of view as well, forcing its fans to think and contemplate what is right and what is wrong. One of the most popular philosophical points of view addressed in the series is the Cycle of Hatred.
The story of Naruto Uzumaki and how he became the greatest shinobi and Hokage of all time concluded with the last episode of Naruto Shippuden that aired on 23 March, 2017. Fortunately, fans of the anime can still watch their favorite Hokage in action in Boruto: Naruto Next Generations. It follows the story of Boruto Uzumaki, the firstborn son of the beloved Naruto Uzumaki and Hinata Hyuga. Its first episode premiered on 5 April 2017 and it has 265+ episodes as of September 2022, with weekly updates.
Naruto is a show with 720 episodes, and one of the things that make it worth watching is the show's vast range of characters with unique abilities. This show contains characters who specialize in anything from controlling shadows to controlling minds. While it provides the main characters with more screen time, it also ensures that the supporting characters are given the attention that they deserve.
When Kishimoto created the Naruto characters, he made sure that the outfits they wore or their set of skills reflected each character's personality, such as Naruto's signature technique, Multi Shadow Clone Jutsu, which represented the loneliness he felt in his heart. Although the series offers a diverse cast of characters, each one serves a purpose in the greater picture.
What makes the Naruto series what it is today is its cast of villains. There is a popular saying that Naruto does not have villains, just broken heroes.
|Sasuke Uchiha||Sakura Haruno||Kakashi Hatake|
|Jiraiya||Tsunade Senju||Shikamaru Nara|
|Choji Akamichi||Ino Yamanaka||Asuma Sarutobi|
|Hiruzen Sarutobi||Hinata Hyuga||Neji Hyuga|
|Rock Lee||Tenten||Might Guy|
|Kurenai||Shino Aburame||Kiba Inuzuka|
|Konohamaru Sarutobi||Minato Namikaze||Kushina Uzumaki|
|Shisui Uchiha||Yahiko||Hagoromo Otsutsuki|
|Hamura Otsutsuki||Ashura Otsutsuki||Indra Otsutsuki|
|Orochimaru||Kabuto Yakushi||Nagato Uzumaki|
|Itachi Uchiha||Kisame Hoshigaki||Deidara|
|Pain||Konan||Black Zetsu/White Zetsu|
|Obito Uchiha||Madara Uchiha||Kaguya Otsutsuki|
One of the reasons Naruto is so popular among its community around the globe is its rather unique power system and varied fighting styles. As most youngsters are intrigued by the concept of the ninja and ninja techniques, the Naruto series made it a reality. In the shinobi world, one can grow strong by learning the ways and techniques of a true shinobi.
In the Naruto world, most fighting techniques or any other abilities are classified as Jutsu. Jutsu is categorized into three main categories: Ninjutsu, Genjutsu, and Taijutsu, where all these techniques have the use of chakra in common.
Ninjutsu: Apart from the Shuriken Jutsu, Ninjutsu is usually the manifestation of Chakra into real-world effects. Most times, hand signs are required to be weaved in order to cast Jutsu as it helps mold Chakra in shapes and forms as required by the casters. Examples of Ninjutsu include Rasengan, Shadow Clone Jutsu, Chidori, and much more.
Genjutsu: Genjutsu is much less of a jutsu and more of a classification of Jutsu. While Taijutsu and Ninjutsu do not rely entirely on chakra, Genjutsu can not be performed without it. Genjutsu is not real – it causes illusions that the victims think are real, which messes with their reality, to confuse and manipulate them. While the occurrences in Genjutsu aren’t always real, they can be a powerful tool that can destroy a person mentally.
Taijutsu: The physical hand-to-hand fighting styles practiced by ninjas are referred to as taijutsu. It challenges a person's physical limits in order to attain exceptional outcomes. While chakra is not always required for taijutsu, it can be used to increase the damage done. The Leaf Hurricane, Uzumaki Barrage, and Eight-Gates technique are three examples of this.
Despite there being only three basic types of Jutsu, the extent to which they can be modified is incredible. There is no limit to how Jutsu can be used as it even has variations, which each person can call their signature move- like Naruto adding the wind element to the Rasengan and Sasuke adding the fire element to the Chidori. The potential of Jutsu is unlimited, and this is what makes the show so much fun to watch.
One of the main reasons behind Naruto’s huge success is its unique world-building. Viewers get a chance to witness the world of the shinobi with different countries and their various ways of living. The world of Naruto is rich with different lands and villages.
Although there are many more lands and countries, five nations stand on top; namely, the Land of Fire, Land of Water, Land of Earth, Land of Wind, and Land of Lightning. While there are many more lands, these Five Great Nations possess the most power and influence. While the Daimyo (Feudal Lord) of a nation rules over the land, the nation's military might is possessed by its Hidden Shinobi Village. For example, the Land of Fire is ruled by Fire Daimyo and the military might is under the control of the Hokage of the Village Hidden in the Leaves.
|Popular Hidden Villages|
|Hidden Leaf Village||Hidden Sand Village||Hidden Stone Village|
|Hidden Mist Village||Hidden Cloud Village||Hidden Sound Village|
|Hidden Rain Village||Hidden Eddy Village||Hidden Waterfall Village|
Just as the real world has communities and great families, characters in the Naruto world also hail from various families, otherwise known as clans. People born into clans appear to be drawn to the Jutsu practiced by their clans. The Hyuga have the Byakugan while the Uchiha clan possess the Sharingan, which are visual abilities. The Yamanaka clan is skilled in mind control techniques. The Aburame dynasty appears to have a deep relationship with insects, while the Inuzuka clan is well-known for their love of dogs.
Although most of the characters in the Naruto world hail from various clans, there are also plenty of those who do not. For example, Jiraiya, Orochimaru, Tenten, and many more do not have their clan’s name in their names, which makes it hard to determine their lineage. However, hailing from a clan and possessing a Kekkei Genkai does not ensure strength as there are plenty of strong ninjas, like Jiraiya, who did not hail from a great clan but still became a strong and renowned shinobi.
The different clans in Naruto span out not only through nations across the earth but also into outer space. The Otsutsuki clan is a clan of an alien civilization that cultivate chakra fruit from the life energy of various planets to grow stronger. In addition to that, members of the Hyuga clan and descendants of Hamura Otsutsuki also reside on the moon in the Naruto universe. With an ever-expanding universe, one can never tell how many clans the Naruto world has.
In the shinobi world, Hidden Villages earn their livelihood by completing various missions. To assure the completion of a mission and the safety of the shinobi involved, shinobi are dispatched in teams or squads.
Once an aspiring shinobi graduates from the Ninja Academy, they become a genin and get assigned to a genin squad led by a high-ranked shinobi (chunin or higher). The newly graduated genins complete missions under the guidance and protection of their captain. This helps the genin to gain experience and hone their craft as they get introduced to the cruel life of a shinobi.
One of the first things that the show teaches you is the importance of teams and friends; how important it is to look out for each other. Kishimoto emphasizes the importance of teams from the beginning of the show. The first test that Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura went through as a team was the bell test, where they were taught the importance of working as a team. A lot of events that transpire in Naruto are to do with team members and their belief in each other.
A three-ninja squad is considered ideal for missions in the shinobi world since it allows the team members to look out for each other from all sides, complement each other's strengths, and watch out for each other's weaknesses. It also allows them to move around unnoticed and swiftly, unlike a large group that would draw attention and make it difficult to act fast and discreetly. A fantastic example is the Ino-Shika-Cho team, which has almost no rift between them because they work perfectly in sync, owing to their experience and familiarity with each other's abilities. In the Ninja world, teams are incredibly important, and Kishimoto emphasizes the need of watching out for your friends while on a mission, even prioritizing each other’s safety over the mission's success.
Naruto is one of the longest-running anime series of all time. As mentioned earlier, it is divided into two parts, Naruto and Naruto: Shippuden. Naruto has a total of 220 episodes. It covers Naruto’s early years as a young ninja in his pre-teen years. Naruto: Shippuden follows Naruto’s journey as he witnesses the cruel shinobi world he lived in, with a total of 500 episodes. Combined, the Naruto anime series consists of a total of 720 episodes.
The abundance of filler episodes is one of the reasons Naruto is so long. Naruto has good pacing, with episodes coming out quite frequently. As a result, it occasionally moves faster than the manga, resulting in fillers between canon episodes. While the fillers do not add much to the plot, they are entertaining to watch because they show how your favorite characters fare with their newly mastered techniques or just how they relax after a tiresome mission, going on about their daily regular lives. Regardless of how often they are criticized, Naruto fans find it difficult not to re-watch episodes due to the excellent action sequences, speeches, and training arcs. Sometimes it can be difficult to point out what happens and when it happens. You can find any episode you are looking for here, on Sportskeeda.
Despite its unusually high number of episodes and fillers, Naruto will always be a top-tier anime, because of the amazing narrative and range of things that the series has to offer to the audience.