Warning: contain major spoilers for Chapter 66 of Boruto
Death is no stranger to Naruto, as his life has been filled with tragedy, but the latest death in Boruto may hit the Seventh Hokage harder than any other. Though things have been looking dire for the past few chapters of Boruto, no one could have seen the latest tragedy coming, especially not Naruto himself.
It’s an understatement to say that things have been tough in Boruto. With the villainous Code gaining more power than ever, Kawaki have been deadset on confronting him to protect Naruto while Boruto only wanted to tag along and follow his adopted brother. The battle against Code is difficult, ultimately leading Boruto to activate his karma, allowing Momoshiki total control over his body. Boruto is initially able to control himself enough to fight Code, but Momoshiki’s will quickly turns his attention toward Kawaki. Naruto and Shikimaru tried to intervene and rescue the Hokage’s two sons, but are quickly subdued as Boruto and Kawaki prepare for a battle.
Now, in chapter 66 of Boruto by Masashi Kishimoto and Mikio Ikemoto, Boruto and Kawaki’s epic brawl begins. Though Naruto is insistent on Kawaki stopping the fight and not harming Boruto, the danger posed to Naruto by a Momoshiki possessed Boruto is too high for Kawaki to ignore. The two engage in a battle eerily reminiscent of Naruto and Sasuke’s iconic fights. After more than a little back and forth, Kawaki manages a lucky blow and pins Boruto’s shoulder, abdomen, and leg. Before Kawaki’s able to crush Boruto under a massive box, Naruto rescues him. Finally, Boruto regains control but realizes he’s too much of a danger. Despite Naruto’s protests, Boruto and Kawaki agree to end things. Boruto lets his brother impale him through the chest and kill him, much to his father’s horror.
All of this just makes Naruto’s life so much more tragic than it already was. Death has hung around Naruto like a specter, claiming many people close to him. He’s had to deal with the death of his parents, the loss of an ally in Neji, and the tragic passing of his mentor Jiraiya. Despite all the pain and loss though, Naruto has always been able to move forward with his iconic sense of optimism intact. The death of a child is completely different though. Needless to say that Naruto has never experienced a loss quite this devastating. Of course, the tragedy of the situation is softened by the fact that fans already know this isn’t the true end. Boruto’s flash-forward shows Boruto and Kawaki alive and Naruto potentially dead.
Even with this, it’s no understatement to say that this moment will change everything about Naruto, both the franchise and the character. Even when Boruto comes back, the psychological scar of losing a child isn’t something anyone easily recovers from, even someone with an iron will like Naruto Uzumaki. It’s also possible that Boruto’s death is the catalyst that leads to the dark future seen in the flash-forward. Still, it’s undeniable Naruto was just dealt a massive blow with the death of Boruto and things can never be the same.
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