Boruto Episode 96

Boruto Episode 96

Blood, Sweat, and Namida

Today we’re back again with yet another Boruto: Naruto Next Generations filler episode review. While this episode follows one of my least favorite characters in the series, Namida, I still have to admit that they nailed the episode title. I just wish I had come up with it instead.

If you were around for last week’s episode review, you might recall that near the end of it I vowed to not skip out on reviewing an episode of Boruto again for the foreseeable future. Well, I’m already regretting that, but I’ll stay true to my word even though next week’s episode following Shikadai’s entrance into politics seems like another bad episode.

So, just why was this week’s episode so bad compared to what I was expecting? The simple answer is the extreme focus on the fact that Namida is a crybaby. I knew going in that this episode was going to feature Namida as the star, but I kind of expected it to focus more on Team 15 as a whole.

I like Hanabi as a character, and I really do think Wasabi has untapped potential, so theoretically Team 15 could be entertaining to watch. However, Namida is such an annoying, and often useless, character that she actively detracts from the rest of the team.

In this episode she’s decided to quit using her signature cry jutsu because, as an area of effect (AoE) attack, it doesn’t discriminate between friend and foe. Instead, she needs to develop a different jutsu which she can reliably use on missions without putting her teammates in danger.

Does anyone else vaguely remember a previous episode with this same premise?

Water Style

So, what does Namida choose to replace her AoE cry jutsu with? A single-target water jet jutsu, which Sumire is arguably better at using than Namida is. Come on, Namida, at least choose a jutsu that’ll actually be helpful to the rest of your team. Maybe something that plays a support role.

Don’t get me wrong, a simple water jet jutsu like this can be powerful as we’ve seen from the Fifth Mizukage, Mei Terumī, who could use it to cut through solid rock. But, chances are Namida’s version of this jutsu will never be that powerful considering she’s unlikely to reach the level of Kage.

Instead, Namida’s water jet jutsu is roughly on par with a fire hose after what we can assume is weeks of training. I’m sure the Hidden Leaf Fire Company would appreciate having her around, but for a “signature” jutsu, it’s not very impressive.

Namida training against Wasabi from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Namida training against Wasabi

In fact, when Namida uses this jutsu against some enemies near the end of the episode, we see that it’s only strong enough to knock people back, not deal any real damage. Further, since the enemy shinobi were using water clones, her attacks were essentially useless.

However, some misinformation was spread during this episode regarding water style jutsu in general that I feel I should clear up. It was implied, and also explicitly stated, that Namida’s water jet jutsu was ineffective specifically because the enemy clones were water clones.

This is unequivocally false. Regardless of what style Namida’s jutsu was, or what kind of clones the enemies were using, the outcome would have been the same. Once being hit by an attack of basically any kind, all types of clones get destroyed. Just because this is a filler episode doesn’t mean the writers can break the rules.

Sumire and Wasabi

Although Namida is the star of this week’s episode, I feel like discussing Sumire and Wasabi a bit as well considering the last time I really looked at them in a post was my ranking of the “Boruto 12.”

As far as I’m concerned, Sumire is arguably the most boring of the three girls who make up Team 15. Yes, Namida is more annoying, but at least she has a unique signature jutsu. Sumire doesn’t really have a signature jutsu, and instead simply “specializes” in summoning jutsu thanks to Nue.

She also seems to be extremely proficient at other types of jutsu, such as water style as we saw this week. If I had to put a title on Sumire, it would be jack-of-all-trades, which is good, but having a real specialization is better.

Wasabi, on the other hand, shows the most promise on Team 15. She has a fairly versatile signature jutsu, but it’s still specialized enough to potentially be extremely powerful in the right situations.

Her cat cloak jutsu can turn her into an effective tracker, a high-speed runner, or even a powerful close quarters specialist via taijutsu. I’m assuming that as the series progresses she’ll be able to swap between her different cat-types quickly enough to chain attacks with them, which would make her one of the more entertaining characters to watch fight.

Unfortunately, for now, although we see her use some taijutsu against Namida while they’re training, when she has to fight actual opponents she resorts to simply scratching their faces. Wasabi could be such a cool character, but no, they have to make her a bit too cat-like sometimes.

Namida of the Hidden Sound

Remember when the Hidden Sound village was actually a real place with shinobi who specialized in sound-based jutsu? It’s sad to see how the use of these unconventional jutsu types has fallen to just a single, annoying girl from the Hidden Leaf.

Interestingly, sound-based jutsu (other than genjutsu) don’t appear to have a specific chakra nature. I assumed that they would either fall into the yin or yang natures, but as far as I can find, this isn’t actually the case. Instead, sound-based jutsu are natureless, just like the base Rasengan.

However, unlike the Rasengan and some other natureless jutsu, I don’t think a nature can be applied to sound-based jutsu. For example, although Namida has an affinity for the water nature, she wouldn’t be able to create a water style, sound-based jutsu.

Namida using her new jutsu from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Namida using her new jutsu

But, just because Namida can’t add a chakra nature to her cry jutsu doesn’t mean she can’t develop it into a variety of different jutsu. At the end of this week’s episode, Namida uses the chakra control she learned for her water jet jutsu to turn her cry jutsu into something completely different.

By focusing her chakra in her mouth and creating just a small opening for the chakra-infused sound to escape from, Namida is able to turn her AoE cry jutsu into a focused blast. Interestingly, this version of the jutsu can also be seen due to the rainbow-colored light it produces.

I’m not entirely sure why they chose to make a sound-based jutsu look like a blast of rainbow energy, but I will say I enjoyed the small sparrows made of rainbow light as well. The sparrow is the symbol of the Suzumeno clan which Namida belongs to, so it was fitting.

Conclusion

So, what did you think of this week’s filler episode of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations? As I mentioned earlier on, it was actually worse than I was originally expecting. That said, I’m expecting next week’s episode to be pretty bad, so maybe it’ll surprise me and turn out decent.

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My review of episode 98 is available here. No episode 97 review.

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