Boruto Episode 189

Boruto Episode 189

Peak Boruto

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 189 was hyped up to be the next big episode, and I have to say it didn’t disappoint. I’ll even go so far as to say that this is the new best episode of the series, surpassing episode 65. I’m sure some people won’t agree with that, but I think this episode did everything perfectly.

It shouldn’t need to be said because we could all see it, but the animation was great. There were a few times when I thought a bit too much detail was lost from the art during some of the more dynamic shots. However, overall it was way above what I’d expect from 99% of anime.

And, even when the animation wasn’t going crazy, the art was. The art in this episode was definitely the best art of the series so far. I don’t think anyone could make a truly convincing argument against that.

Delta from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations

If you want an example of how good the art was in this episode, compare the above image of Delta to what she looked like in the previous episode. She’s way more detailed, which makes her look way better. I’ve complained in the past about Delta not looking intimidating, but with this art style, she definitely does.

The best way I can explain the style used in this episode is that it’s as close to seeing manga panels animated as we’re likely to get. Sometimes people use the phrase “animated manga panels” as a derisive term. But in this case, I’m using it as a compliment to say that somehow the anime was able to be as detailed as the manga without sacrificing animation quality.

Oh, and I love how shadows were used in this episode to make the characters look a lot less flat than they normally do in Boruto.

Kawaki vs. Garo

Based on the setup from the previous episode, I wasn’t expecting this episode to go that crazy. Sure, it’s Kawaki’s first fight of the series and we already know that he’s going to be a major character. But considering that Garo was his opponent, I wasn’t expecting anything on the level of episode 65.

If Kawaki’s opponent had been Ao, I would have expected more than I did going into this episode. Ao is an established character who’s been around for hundreds of episodes. Garo, on the other hand, was just introduced a week or two ago as someone Kawaki already defeated as a child.

But, I think this episode actually cemented Garo as a really good antagonist despite the fact that he only lasted about two episodes. We got to see how strong he’d become since initially losing to Kawaki years ago. He even put up a great fight, defeating Kawaki before his Karma was activated.

Garo about to be finished off by Kawaki from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Garo about to be finished off by Kawaki

Another thing I liked about this fight was how it demonstrated the very different fighting styles and perspectives of both Kawaki and Garo.

Kawaki uses his speed to his advantage and doesn’t want to rely on a power he doesn’t view as his own, such as Karma. Garo is the opposite. He uses his size and weight, something I thought was very cool to see, to his advantage. And he has no problem relying on borrowed power in the form of his scientific ninja tools.

Going back to Garo’s fighting style, it was so much more satisfying to see than the fighting style of someone like Shojoji of the Mujina Gang who has a similar body style. He’s not fast, but he knows how to use his weight and strength to devastating effect. That’s not something we often see in this series.

The Power of Karma

Before I get to Karma, I do want to spend a little time going over Kawaki’s other ability. His blood cells have been altered so that they’re basically microscopic scientific ninja tools. But even so, I’m going to be referring to the ability this allows him to use as a jutsu.

Basically, Kawaki has a jutsu that allows him to crystallize his blood into a rock-like material on the outside of his body. I don’t know the logistics of how it works, but we saw that it works in a different way from Deepa’s hardening of the carbon in his body.

And this jutsu Kawaki has is very versatile. He made shields, projectiles, shoes, swords, and more all with the same ability. I wonder if he’s capable of using other jutsu, or if he simply uses this one for all of his combat needs.

Kawaki with Karma activated from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Kawaki with Karma activated

Karma is a pretty interesting ability, mainly because we don’t really understand it at this point. We know it has something to do with the Ōtsutsuki clan since that’s how Boruto got it and Kara was researching them. But we also don’t know how Jigen and Kawaki got it.

I’ve previously theorized that Jigen has true Karma while Kawki’s is artificial, but at this point, I’m not so sure that’s the case. Kawaki specifically mentioned disliking Karma because it’s not his power. He didn’t say the same thing about his blood “jutsu” despite that being the product of science.

To me, that implies that his Karma and blood jutsu don’t come from the same place. The blood jutsu may be enabled by scientific ninja tools, but Kawaki still views that as his own power. Does he view Karma as Jigen’s power? Or does he know that it comes from the Ōtsutsuki?


What do you think of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 189? Was this the best episode of the series so far? Or do you think another episode, like 65, is better? Also, what are your thoughts on Garo? And why do you think Kawaki hates using the borrowed power of Karma so much? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of Boruto episode 190 is available.

5 Replies to “Boruto Episode 189”

  1. I’d love to see other episodes with this manga-like animation, the others looked like something from the Pokemon world

    1. I agree, but animating with this level of detail in the art takes a lot more time than the production normally has for each episode. The good news is that there are supposedly some other big episodes coming up shortly. So while we might not get something that looks this good again for a while, we should be getting a few episodes that are at least above the usual quality.

  2. Okay my thing is why would they just change it randomly. I like the anime version a lot better. They looked flat in the manga version and were not as detailed. They look like there versions from the ninja storm games. Boruto has had amazing fights with amazing detail. You could see every moment and it wasn’t stiff at all. Like jugo vs konohamru or Sakura vs the fake uchiha even episode 65 had an amazing fight but they didn’t change the art style. It’s weird because there going to change back for next episode. Even the deepa fight had AMAZING ANIMATION WITH SUPER HIGH QUALITY but they didn’t change the art style. I loved the episode I just hope the animator don’t get lazy because every fight leading up to this arc had been amazing. But they slacked off on the sparring season with boruto and naruto and even when konohamru went against delta that seemed very stiff. But in the beginning of boruto everything has been fluid and clean and animated great up until these last couple fights where they slacked off. Besides episode 189.

    1. Well, there are a lot of reasons why this episode looked so much different. It had a different director who’s known for basically all the great Naruto fights, the animators had more time to work on it, it wasn’t outsourced to another studio, a lot of talented animators were on this episode because of the director, etc.

      Simply, it’s a combination of a lot of talent working on this episode and also them having plenty of time to work on it.

      1. Okay that makes sense! This show has the potential to be amazing! I have high hopes for it! Thanks for the feedback!

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