Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Episode 231

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Episode 231

Samurai of the Land of Iron

Boruto is back after its one-week break for New Year’s, and with its return, we got a brand new OP and ED. I think the OP is great. The song isn’t my favorite, but the visuals are very good and it’s definitely one of the better Boruto OPs. The ED isn’t anything too special, but it looks nice.

Aside from the new OP and ED, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Episode 231 wasn’t all that good. It was a fine episode. But it was also filler that doesn’t matter. And the next episode looks like it’s going to be the same, which I’m not too thrilled about.

But, hey, at least this week’s episode was about Team 15. That’s way better than next week’s Team 5 episode already. As I’ve said before, I actually like Wasabi and Tsubaki. And while I don’t particularly like Namida, I do think she has pretty interesting jutsu.

Tsubaki investigating bamboo slices from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Tsubaki investigating bamboo slices

Of course, Tsubaki was the star of this episode. She’s a samurai from the Land of Iron, and the antagonist of the episode was also a samurai from the Land of Iron. And not only that, but this enemy samurai is someone with whom Tsubaki has a history.

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this history between Tsubaki and Sazanka (the antagonist). It’s a pretty common trope, which makes it feel a bit too generic. But, the fact that they know each other does raise the stakes a bit compared to if Sazanka was just some random samurai from the same nation as Tsubaki.

Still, I think even if Sazanka and Tsubaki weren’t connected, a similar storyline could have taken place. Rather than Tsubaki defeating the monster “she created,” she would have been defeating a rogue Samurai to restore the honor of the Land of Iron.


Sazanka isn’t a very interesting character despite the backstory we got for him. He was a promising samurai who snapped after he was defeated by the weaker Tsubaki in the final match of a tournament at their dojo.

The alleged prize for winning the tournament was Mifune’s Kurosawa blade. I say alleged because this was simply a rumor and despite winning the tournament, Tsubaki isn’t in possession of the Kurosawa. But, for Sazanka, who dedicated his life to earning the right to wield that blade, this defeat was too much.

He attempted to steal the Kurosawa, cutting down multiple of his fellow students in the process before fleeing empty-handed. And ever since that day, he’s been training on his own and soaking his blade in the blood of his opponents in an attempt to get stronger.

Sazanka from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations

Before going any further, can I just say how dumb it was that Sazanka didn’t steal the Kurosawa? As we saw, the other students who were protecting the blade were using wooden swords. He could have easily killed them all and taken the blade. But instead, he ran away after killing only a few.

That could have made this episode’s story a bit more interesting. Sazanka could have been using the stolen blade and Tsubaki retrieves it from him after defeating him. And since she won the tournament, that would make her the rightful owner of the blade.

But, no. Rather than having Tsubaki get a slight power-up by getting the sword that was stolen from her, we got a lame story about a guy who learned the power of friendship by being defeated by someone who doesn’t train on her own.

Would you have preferred the Kurosawa play a bigger role in the story?

Tsubaki’s Strength

Sometimes we get filler episodes or arcs that still “matter” by adding some bonus character development. Having Tsubaki obtain the Kurosawa at the end of the episode, as I mentioned, would have been a good way to do this. It would have been just a little bonus for her character.

Oh, and I guess I should also just make clear why I don’t think Tsubaki is already in possession of the Kurosawa. If she was, Sazanka definitely would have recognized the blade and commented on it. Considering he didn’t, we can safely assume it’s not the sword Tsubaki uses.

Even with Tsubaki not getting the Kurosawa, she could have at least gotten some new sword technique or something. I’m just not a fan of Tsubaki defeating this person from her past and coming out with nothing to show for it.

Tsubaki fighting Sazanka from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Tsubaki fighting Sazanka

The “development” she got instead was simply the confirmation that she’s strong. We already knew Tsubaki was quite strong among her peers. That’s not really a new development. And it doesn’t change her character in any way. She acted like she was strong before, and she’ll continue to do so going forward.

And, yes, I know that this was just a filler episode so it’s not really supposed to impact the main story of the series. But Tsubaki’s already an anime-original character, as are Wasabi and Namida. So the anime can do whatever it wants with them without impacting the story.

If Tsubaki was killed off in this episode, that would change literally nothing as far as the main plot is concerned. So with that in mind, hopefully, you can see why I’m disappointed that nothing came out of this episode. Filler episodes featuring original characters are the perfect opportunities to build out those original characters.


What do you think of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations Episode 231? Do you think it was a good filler episode? What did you think of Sazanka as an antagonist? And should Tsubaki have gotten the Kurosawa at the end of the episode? Let me know in the comments.

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