English Dub Review: Boruto “Formation of the Three-Man Squad?”

Everything Bort is new again.

OVERVIEW (SPOILERS)

The day has come for the current class of Genin to be put into three-man squads, and some are less happy about the results than others. Boruto, Sarada, and Mitsuki are put together on Team 3, but neither Boruto nor Sarada are willing to let this slide. Unfortunately, the Boruto movie with them already as a team came out in 2015, but the events of that film won’t happen for about thirty more episodes. So, to prevent a time paradox, the teachers insist they stay together, but offer them the option of delivering a form to Hokage Naruto to see if he will put them in different teams…which already has no chance of happening.

Ironically, the three of them end up working well as a team in the effort to stop them from being an official team, but their path to Naruto is blocked on a rickety bridge by Mirai Sarutobi, Asuma’s daughter and granddaughter of the Third Hokage. Being fresh Genin, they don’t stand much chance against a Chunin like her, so they come up with a plan to get past. And inadvertently, their fight manages to show exactly what they need to work on to better synch up with each other, which they use to finally trip up Mirai. Unsurprisingly, this was actually a plan by Konohamaru to get them to face an impossible challenge and realize how well they work together.

Realizing this, Sarada and Boruto decide to try being a team for a while, but Sarada still has something to ask of Naruto: To change their name from Team 3 to the new Team 7, inheriting their parents’ former number.

OUR TAKE

In another weirdly well-timed coincidence, the Naruto Shippuden episode that aired right after this was about revisiting the beginnings of the original Team 7. There was definitely a lot more drama going on there, for better or worse, but it’s also a nice reminder of how far things have come…but also how much other things have regressed a bit. I think the main problem with this episode is the timing. This feels like a plot point we should have gotten months ago to show the series was moving at a good pace. But this is Episode THIRTY-EIGHT and they are ONLY NOW becoming a team when this was done in less than a sixth of that time in the original series.

But we’re here now, so better late than never I suppose. To its credit, there’s still a bunch I don’t think had ever been elaborated on or experimented with regarding Genin team selection before now. For one, I don’t think we had ever seen any team with named characters that wasn’t a two boy-one girl combination, so seeing them go nuts with one being all guys, one being all girls, one being two girls one guy, etc. is interesting. I wish they were made up of even remotely interesting characters, but…you take what you can get. Also, I guess the numbers are given randomly? Because they were sure jumping around those multiples with Teams 5, 10, 15, 25, and 40. Maybe it’s about what numbers are available? But it’s not like they could run out of numbers, right?

Though the heart of this episode is what I think deserves some praise. For the concept at least. Having a team not want anything to do with each other and then learning they work well as a team by having a common goal of not wanting to be on a team is a pretty novel idea, but I wish I didn’t see the lesson coming from a mile away. Seeing how both Boruto and Sarada still have discernable aspects of their respective fighting styles they each need to work on gives me hope that these characters have a plan ahead of them in terms of development…I just would’ve liked this a bit earlier, but what can you do. Either way, the New Team 7 has officially been put together, meaning things are going to be just like the beginnings of the old show, right?! Well, probably not, but maybe some things will start moving in the right direction because next weeks see their very first mission as a team!

David Kaldor

Green Lynx (David Kaldor): Aimless 20-something given a paid outlet for his thoughts on cartoons. Fears being boring slightly more than being outright disliked.

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