Boruto: Naruto Next Generations 1×246 Review – “A Heavy Loss”

A Heavy Loss Boruto Anime 246 review
Salad, Mitsuki, and Kawaki make sure Boruto’s feeling okay in ‘A Heavy Loss’ (Screengrab: Boruto anime episode 246)

Boruto anime episode 246 stayed true to what’s stated in the title. ‘A Heavy Loss’ featured two deaths I wasn’t expecting.

Even though Funamushi stabbed Kagura in the previous episode, I really thought Kagura would only experience a grave injury and remain offscreen until he’s well again. But nopes. Instead, the anime writers decided to pull on the emotional heartstrings. ‘A Heavy Loss’ had an entire scene where Kagura said goodbye to Boruto and his crew as he took his final breaths.

Hebiichigo did sew up his wound and Iwabe and Salad tried to use some medical ninjutsu to keep him alive, but nothing worked. The bleeding just wouldn’t stop. I think the animators did a good job when it came to showcasing the various facial expressions across the cast as the realization dawned that Kagura wasn’t going to make it.

Sakura Haruno continues to get a whole lot of hate from certain parts of the fandom. But the scene with an injured Kagura served as yet another example of the importance of skilled medical ninjas in the Naruto/Boruto franchise. The fact that Boruto and his crew are taking part in a war without a reliable medical ninja on the roster clearly puts them at risk. Maybe the loss of Kagura will motivate Salad and Iwabe to improve their medical ninjutsu skills? Hmmm.

Before Kagura died, he handed Hebiichigo a petition stating he wanted her, Buntan, and Kyoho to receive freedom once the current mission was over. Kagura’s continued to be shown as a kind soul. He had no qualms about even trusting those who meant him harm. Hebiichigo literally tried to assassinate Kagura but he still forgave her because he felt deep down she was a good person.

He also asked Boruto and the rest to protect the village he grew up in. I think having Kagura make such a request, while making narrative sense, was a good way to keep our heroes confined to a specific place instead of having them travel to the actual battlefield. I highly doubt Chojuro would have allowed ninjas from the Hidden Leaf Village to fight a war between the Land of Water and Funato Clan due to possible political complications.

With Kagura gone, I appreciated ‘A Heavy Loss’ taking the time to address two issues. We got a scene where everyone voted for Salad to replace Kagura as team leader. She’s not as strong as Kawaki, Mitsuki, and Boruto (yet), but she knows how to lead. Such a skill also falls in line with Salad’s goal of one day becoming the Hokage.

The second issue dealt with Boruto activating the Karma Mark during his battle with Funamushi. The previous episode had me wondering if Boruto’s Karma Mark would activate after seeing Kagura being attacked in such a manner. I got my answer this week. The current episode showed that even though Amado’s pills were working to stop the Otsutsukification of Boruto’s body (it had stopped at 80%), he was still able to tap into the Karma Mark’s powers to give himself a boost. The good news was that Boruto’s fully aware of his actions during the latest activation period.

Salad, Mitsuki, and Kawaki being worried about Boruto was handled well. He did say he wasn’t interested in using the Karma Mark again to fight the Funato Clan, but I doubt Boruto’s actually able to control the activation process when he’s under immense emotional pressure.

Now, I don’t know if the anime team was on a tight budget or not, but the way the camera decided to focus on the sky instead of showing Boruto’s battle with Funamushi made me laugh. The entire thing felt so weird. I could hear the two clash, but the visual was only a shot of the sky. At least, we got to see Boruto hit Funamushi with a Rasengan. The fact that Funamushi didn’t die after taking such a hit was a nice way to show his durability. But having said that, Funamushi’s clearly not powerful enough to actually last against a Karma Mark-activated Boruto. If Boruto wasn’t worried about Kagura’s wellbeing, he could have easily ended Funamushi.

With Funamushi’s subordinates taking him away from the fight, I wonder if Boruto will get a chance to battle Funamushi again and put a stop to him for good.

As for the rest of the episode, ‘A Heavy Loss’ jumped to Chojuro and the Funato Clan’s ships experiencing a standstill at sea. Chojuro had recieved Kagura’s message about the Funato Clan sending a small army to attack the Hidden Mist Village by land. But, from what I could understand, Chojuro didn’t want to ask his ships to retreat and head back in case it alerted the Funato Clan they knew about that specific plan of theirs.

With our heroes dealing with Kagura’s death, the villains experienced a loss, too. We got to see Tenma being annoyed due to the standstill. He wanted to board Chojuro’s ship and kill him. However, Tenma’s older brother Isari kept telling him to remain calm. We got a flashback sequence that helped give Tenma’s character some layers. I wasn’t expecting him to be Isari’s adopted brother. Turns out, Tenma grew up as an orphan. While still a child, one day he asked Araumi to take him under his wing after witnessing Araumi lay waste to a bunch of people on the beach.

As far as Tenma’s concerned, he’s always wanted to have Araumi acknowledge his strength. Tenma wasn’t as strategic as Isari. So, he relied on doing tasks that required force. He wanted to kill Chojuro to impress Araumi. And even though Isari warned Tenma not to be so rash, it was clear Tenma wasn’t going to listen to him.

While Chojuro vs Tenma was short, at least we got to see the two fight instead of having the camera focus on the sky. There was no way Tenma was ever going to defeat Chojuro without a well-developed plan. His desire to impress Araumi led to his demise.

Now, I have to say, I still have no idea why Isari didn’t try and help Tenma. I mean, he could have at least tried to give Tenma some cover and drag him off Chojuro’s ship, right? But I guess, the writers just wanted the bad guys to experience a casualty, too, after taking Kagura off the board. 

In a way, Boruto losing Kagura and Ikada losing Tenma while also having his sister be gravely injured can be used to have an interesting confrontation between the two friends down the line. Both Boruto and Ikada have suffered losses now and I doubt Boruto will be able to handle the situation with Ikada by simply using Talk-No Jutsu.

What did you think of ‘A Heavy Loss’? Did you want Kagura to live?

Let us know.

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.


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