Boruto: How to Get Started With the Anime & Manga

Fans of Naruto are in for a treat with Boruto, a sequel series following Naruto’s son that differs between its anime and manga versions.

Boruto, the follow-up series to the shonen classic Naruto, follows the next generation of shinobi heroes. Focused on Naruto’s son and his young ninja colleagues, the story of the series in many ways subverts the tropes of its predecessor. The spinoff sequel actually began as an animated movie, subsequently receiving an ongoing manga and anime.

While the Boruto anime has more lighthearted, slice-of-life stories that serve as narrative prequels, the manga is more serious and character-focused. Both versions of Boruto’s story are interesting in their own right, especially for fans who grew up reading or watching Naruto. Here’s what the story of Naruto’s son is about and how best to read or watch it unfold.

The Plot Of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations

The story of Boruto takes place several years after Naruto, with Boruto, the son of Naruto and Hinata Uzumaki (once Hyuga), now around the same age as his father was when the original series started. Whereas Naruto grew up without parents, Boruto instead desperately longs to be acknowledged by his busy dad, who’s seemingly put his long-held goal of being hokage ahead of having a relationship with his family.

The budding young ninja soon forms his own team alongside the daughter of Sasuke and Sakura as well as the “son” of series villain Orochimaru. Together, they train for the Chunin Exams and interact with the previous generation of ninjas, most of whom are now married parents. In the shadows, however, a threat lurks that targets Naruto and the demon inside of him, with only the combined might of father and son possibly being enough to protect the leader of the Hidden Leaf Village.

Where To Read The Boruto Manga

The still ongoing Boruto manga began publication in Weekly Shonen Jump in 2016, so far accumulating a total of 15 manga volumes. Only 12 of these have been released in English, however, though the rest are on the way. Naruto was written and drawn by franchise creator Masashi Kishimoto, but that’s not entirely the case for the sequel. Boruto is written by both Kishimoto and screenwriter Ukyo Kodachi, the latter of whom wrote the Boruto movie. Meanwhile the art is done by Mikio Ikemoto, a former assistant of Kishimoto’s.

Given how mainstream the title is, it’s no wonder that Boruto: Naruto Next Generations can be purchased pretty much anywhere that manga is sold. This includes physical retailers like Target and Barnes & Noble, as well as online venues like Amazon and Right Stuf. Ways to read the book digitally include the Shonen Jump and Mangaplus apps, which are update with the latest chapter monthly. There’s also the spinoff series Boruto: Saikyo Dash Generations, though this manga hasn’t been translated and released in English regions yet. The same sadly goes for the light novels, as well.

Where To Watch The Boruto Anime

Announced in late 2016, the Boruto anime is produced by the animation studio Pierrot, which released it in 2017. Instead of simply adapting the manga, which itself initially retold the movie’s story, the anime is a prequel set before the manga’s events. It sometimes takes more of a slice-of-life approach to the characters, featuring them in less harrowing and serious situations than the manga’s story unfolds into.

The show can be streamed on either Hulu or the Crunchyroll streaming service for those with accounts, and individual episodes can also be purchased on Amazon Prime Video, Vudu, Youtube, Apple TV and Google Play Movies. In the case of the movie, however, it currently can only be streamed through Apple TV and Amazon Prime Video after being purchased digitally.

DVD and Blu-Ray collections of the movie and the show so far can be purchased physically through Walmart, Amazon and other retailers. Having already aired over 200 episodes, the Boruto anime only recently came back from a production hiatus. Interested parties should definitely use this opportunity to get caught up with the show, which is sure to be as long-lasting as its predecessor Naruto was.