「つながりのカタチ」 (Tsunagari no Katachi)
“Bonds Come in All Shapes”

Skirmish in the Hideout

Though I had one or two minor qualms about the overall execution of Sarada Gaiden, they are largely forgiven coming out of the arc resolution. For starters, Pierrot pulled out all the stops on the taijutsu scenes, culminating in the delivery of beautifully choreographed and fluid action sequences. The taijutsu we got to glimpse in the Ninja Academy wasn’t too bad, but of course, it simply could not compare with a fight between jounin tier combatants. Not that I remember the last time Sakura showcased some proper hand to hand combat, but this episode did wonders by highlighting her competence and caliber. Exchanging blow after blow, it was spectacular to see Sakura’s immense strength colliding with telekinetically manipulated objects controlled by Shin’s Mangekyo Sharingan.

You could see the fierce fires of fighting spirit etched on the faces of Sakura and Shin, which helped elevate the combat intensity. But a subtle contrast was not lost between their similar expressions, helping convey the clash of their respective ideals – Sakura’s furrowed brows signifying a determination to protect her family, while Shin’s contorted face demonstrating a burning hatred demanding revenge. That said, both looks vastly paled in comparison to the fury incarnate, coming from the single eye of a man fully aware of attempts made on the lives of his wife and daughter.

Only I felt somewhat deflated, because they introduced an anime original development that was totally unnecessary. For a man who squared up against gods and goddesses of the shinobi world, possessing ocular powers that give him motion precognition, it’s beyond belief that Sasuke ends up getting stabbed as a result of Shin’s cheap trick. You don’t build up a really hyped up narrative, then proceed to dismantle it by raining on Sasuke’s parade of awesomeness. Unfortunately, not even the Rinnegan wombo combo worked as compensation. I refuse to be pacified!

But at least Naruto and Sarada got ample time to shine. Who else got the chills when Naruto told Kurama to calm down, as the latter was beginning to get unhinged amongst the sea of sharingans? And don’t even get me started on Sarada. Utilising her heritage of immense strength combined with a crimson sharingan beautiful even by Uchiha standards, our girl powered through to land a clean hit on Shin’s spying creature, ending the dangerous but short-lived threat towards her family.

Concluding Thoughts

Overall, I was quite satisfied with Sarada Gaiden, even if the consistency wasn’t always there. With the arc ending on a high note, I’m willing to accept minor imperfections as a natural part of the production process. Amidst the delightful treats we got this episode, and tying off loose ends featuring the Shin Clones, Chocho and Karin, it can be easy to forget the most important resolution. Sarada may have reconciled with her parents, and the lucky lass receives from Sasuke the thing supposedly better than a kiss. But in my opinion, her most valuable gain came from interacting with Naruto. He imparts his Will of Fire onto her – alongside an aspiration to become Hokage. If she inherits even a fraction of Naruto’s determination, no doubt Sarada will get to extraordinary places in life.

ED2.2 Sequence




  1. Okay I have to admit this episode was above my expectation by a lot. I came in thinking it was going to suck and it did not.

    I also think they actually did a good job redeeming Sasuke in this episode after making him so crazy cold in the last few.

    I was okay with the anime only change only because it really did showed Sasuke cared enough for his kid to be distracted and it made Sakura actually look cool for once. It’s also kind of cute to see a neat husband-wife combo. But you are totally right in saying that the change did break the narrative of Sasuke being God-like strong. That bothered me a bit too when I saw Sasuke get stabbed.

  2. https://randomc.net/image/Boruto%20Naruto%20Next%20Generations/Boruto%20Naruto%20Next%20Generations%20-%2023%20-%20Large%2019.jpg
    Sort of laughed in how Shin’s long term plan when down the drain so quickly; I have to admit, he was hard to kill since Sakura punched him and his skull remained intact. I was rather shocked Shin died so easily, since he can potentially use izanagi, but I guess I expected too much. Was curious how Itachi met him

    Sort of didn’t understand why Sakura couldn’t remove those blades, herself, considering her super strength. I guess super strength couldn’t beat telekinesis.


  3. I would have to say a vast majority of us were surprised by them pouring their budget into an anime-only (well I guess extended) fight that features Sakura. Not that I’m complaining, anything that can show case Taijustsu with great cheorgraphy is good. Plus Sakura needed it considering how under-budget/choppy the showdowns in this arc have been. It must be hard for an animation director to knowingly direct budget towards a certain part of an arc when you know it’ll affect the quality of the rest of the fights because of money constraints. It paid off though cuz that fight was movie-tier.

  4. I always knew in Shippuden Sakura was a strong character despite what a lot of narrow minded Naruto fans have said. Her character development is great and I’m glad it was proved in this episode.

  5. Once again, Sakura is shown kicking some serious ass, but then Naruto, Sasuke, and her daughter only see her beat up and in need of rescuing.

    I mean, they have to know that she’s strong, but come on – can’t she have one time where she fights alongside the rest of the team on equal footing or without needing to be rescued after 20 seconds? Regardless, good episode.

  6. Finally this boring arc is over. Uchiha drama (with the exception of Itachi) and Sakura both never failed to annoy me, disappoint me, or bore me to tears in the manga/previous anime, and this drawn-out arc was no different. Maybe the next arc will be more interesting.

  7. The angry Kuruma scene was great but… why exactly is he THAT pissed off?

    I mean yea, the clone tried to stab Naruto… but that would have been the second time in as many episodes that Naruto would have taken a blade straight through his midsection and when it happened last episode Kuruma just scolded Naruto for getting soft.

  8. The episode concludes the Sarada Gaiden arc nicely to show how everything is tied up in the end.
    The action was good. The expressions was very nicely done by the production.
    Regarding Sasuke getting stabbed, well that can be easily explained by two things:
    1) Both Naruto and Sasuke haven’t seemed to have fought any high level opponents for years so they are rusty in battle.
    2) Sasuke was distracted hence showing his human side and that a moment of hesitation in the battle can get you injured/killed.

    In short, these guys may have godly powers but they’re still human beings with emotions no matter how hard they try and hide it.

    1. Prometheus, I do believe you’re the first person I know from real life (as far as I’m aware) to have commented on one of my posts XD

      My point being that in the manga, Sasuke actually avoided the blow. But now that you raise the second point, I can see why they want to emphasise how highly he values his daughter, that she would cause him to have a strong moment of hesitation.

      At the end of the day, I mostly agree. Naruto has always been a franchise with a powerful emphasis on the human condition, which it seeks to convey through emotions.

  9. I think this whole villain is too stupid for Sasuke and Naruto but the fact remains that they did not want to “kill” them without “investifating” so they do not utilize full power. Also, from Boruto movie, you can see they both avoid using their abilities due to the damage scope to nearby areas (meaning they can hurt everyone and change nature physical form.. so..)..

    I like this episode, I do not like Sarada though.. Still would rather a boy figure to inherit Sasuke’s legacy, not because of anything, but because unlike Sasuke, Sarada is just a black haired Sakura. I can’t connect..


  10. Its been a while. But Sharingan user CANT predict what the other Sharingan jutsu will do right ? Only Sharingan can fight Sharingan etc etc.

    So it is plausible that Sasuke cannot realistically predict what Shin was about to do.

    Sakura is still limited in some ways like amount of Chakra reserves compared to say Sasuke and Naruto levels. While she has super-duper strength+medical jutsus from her training with Tsunade, she still will have that limitation of lower reserves.

    Kurama HATES / DESPISES / TRIGGERS whenever he gets reminders of Uchiha ( due to Madara’s Evil Mangekyo Sharingan ) so him going “wild” pretty much not unexpected when looking at the sea of Sharingans from Shin.

    We really not getting the same level of vibes as the “D”-rank mission becoming the “S”-rank one like Haku and Zabusa or like the Chuunin exam arc.

    Wanna see “new” techniques for awakening more “techniques”. I’m not a big fan of “friendship is magic” 😆 I guess I have to wait and see if “friendly” rivalry can awaken kekkei genkai and stuff.

    1. also “Sharingan” can not Copy Blood skill something… I mean Kakashi could not copy the enemy Skill if it was something with Bloodline talent… (the Bridge arc in the beginning.. the Boy)


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