Naruto fans, brace yourselves. The four new anniversary episodes of the anime hit have been pushed from their September 3 release date. Kotaku reports the indefinite delay, which was announced via the official Naruto website.
Originally intended for Naruto’s 20th anniversary, the four new episodes have been delayed until they meet Studio Pierrot’s standards.
Studio Pierrot, the animation house behind Naruto, Naruto: Shippuden, and Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, made the call to delay the episodes’ release in order not to compromise their quality. The studio issued an apology to eager fans, noting that the disappointing push is for a good cause.
No new release date for the episodes has yet been announced. Any updates on the progress of the project will come first from official Naruto channels, including the website and social media accounts. The September 3 slot originally reserved for the new episodes will now be filled by special selections of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations.
Aside from the return of the band FLOW to perform the theme song “GO!!!”, the four new Naruto episodes are a big question mark. No plot details have emerged; Pierrot is playing the special release close to the chest, and they are not taking any chances by showing subpar work.
Instead of the Naruto anniversary episodes, special selections of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations will air in their place.
That is a good thing for several reasons. Aside from the obvious virtue of craftsmanship, Naruto fans have taken quite a beating from other anime fans online. A fan feud with watchers of One Piece, for example, has seen many criticizing the animation quality of the Naruto shows, especially Borotu; a poorly animated Naruto special would not be a good look for anyone.
Interestingly, the animation style of the Naruto anime series is an element some critics have also zeroed in on. Many have commented that the art style of Masashi Kishimoto, the writer and artist behind the Naruto manga, does not translate well to animation. The millions of fans who have watched decades of Naruto religiously would likely disagree.
Naruto is a young ninja with ambitious dreams and a drive to prove his worth among his peers. His story began as a one-shot manga in 1995, and its serialization turned it into one of the best-selling mangas ever published.
The first anime adaptation ran from 2002 to 2007, following Naruto as a pre-teen. Naruto: Shippuden went twice as long, from 2007 to 2017, and explored the title character during his teenage years.
The sequel series was immediately followed by the spin-off show Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, which concluded this year. It centers on Naruto’s son, a ninja looking to forge a path apart from his father’s legacy.
Naruto is one of the most successful anime franchises in history, spanning three successful series, and it shows no signs of slowing down in its 20th year.
This action-packed franchise regularly makes its way into the discussion about the best anime series of all time. It is beloved by millions of fans, which have turned it into a cultural staple.
As with many anime series, such as Death Note and One Piece, Naruto is in development to get the live-action treatment. Lionsgate began putting a Naruto movie together back in 2015, but it never went anywhere. Earlier this summer, it was announced that the project is once again in active development.
Naruto fans are in for a treat when the new episodes are released. The beloved character has not had a new episode in six years. When he finally does make his triumphant return, it will be a celebration worth having.