For several decades, the shonen genre has consistently ranked as the most popular in anime. Although there are many beloved series that have contributed to this popularity, there’s no question that the Naruto franchise is one of the most important reasons for the mainstream success of the genre.
Although Naruto: Shippuden concluded in 2017, the series still contains many unanswered questions that could have massive implications for the shinobi world. Fans have speculated about these mysteries for years, and as a result, there are countless theories offering potential explanations.
10 The Totsuka Blade And The Yata Mirror
The ongoing feud between Itachi and Sasuke Uchiha is one of the longest storylines in Naruto, so when their rivalry finally reaches its climax during Naruto: Shippuden, it’s the culmination of several hundreds episodes of buildup. Although Itachi lives up to his status as a natural prodigy, his usage of the Totsuka Blade and the Yata Mirror during this sequence goes curiously unexplained.
The Totsuka Blade and the Yata Mirror are two legendary ninja weapons that are capable of sealing any opponent and deflecting any attack, respectively. Each item is steeped in real-life Japanese history, but in spite of their significance, their presence in Naruto is completely unexplained. Some fans theorize that Itachi Uchiha learned about the location of the Totsuka Blade and the Yata Mirror through his connections with the Akatsuki — unfortunately, it’s unlikely that this will ever be confirmed.
9 Hashirama Senju’s Sage Mode
Sage Mode is among the most powerful abilities in Naruto, granting its user the ability to harness and manipulate the natural chakra that surrounds them. Normally, a ninja must travel to Mount Myoboku or Ryuchi Cave in order to learn the technique, but somehow, one shinobi seems to have accomplished this through a different method — Hashirama Senju.
The First Hokage’s Sage Mode doesn’t resemble either the toads of Mount Myoboku or the snakes of Ryuchi Cave, which has lead many fans to speculate where his abilities originate from. Shikkotsu Forest is known to house the slugs that Tsunade wields, and given their familial connection, it would make sense if Hashirama Senju also drew his power from there. However, other fans have speculated that the Sage Mode stems from Enma, the monkey summoned by the Third Hokage, or Hashirama’s mastery of the Wood Style.
8 Kabuto Heals Hinata During The Chunin Exams
The Konoha Crush disrupts the Chunin Exams in dramatic fashion, culminating in the death of the Third Hokage, the defeat of Gaara, and the defense of the Hidden Leaf Village. Hidden among this chaos is a peculiar moment that sees Kabuto, a double-agent working for Orochimaru, heal Hinata Hyuga for no apparent reason.
Some fans chalk Kabuto’s kind gesture up to him staying in character as a member of the Anbu Black Ops; however, it seems like he wouldn’t have wanted to draw attention to himself if he was only worried about his mission. Others hypothesize that Kabuto’s natural instincts as a medical ninja are showing in this scene — a trait that defines his character in the events of Boruto.
7 Jiraiya’s Former Opponents Are The Six Paths Of Pain
When Jiraiya travels to the Land of Rain, he embarks on what is arguably the most dangerous one-man mission in the entire series. His goal is to gain intelligence on Pain, the leader of the Akatsuki, but within hours of arriving in the area, the powerful villain and Jiraiya come face-to-face, revealing that Pain is actually six bodies that are being controlled by Jiraiya’s former student, Nagato.
Somehow, each of the corpses used to form the Six Paths of Pain comes from a shinobi that Jiraiya knew or encountered in the past. It’s a complete mystery how Nagato (1) learned about these individuals or (2) acquires their bodies, but many fans assume that the Pervy Sage’s formal pupil asked about them while they were still traveling together.
6 The Identity Of Rock Lee’s Parents
The Naruto franchise explores parenthood on a surprisingly consistent basis, and over the course of its narrative, most of the show’s characters enjoy at least a couple of on-screen moments with their parents. However, this isn’t the case for Rock Lee, who is easily one of the most popular characters in the entire series.
Might Guy is the closest thing that Rock Lee has to a father figure in Naruto, which is a bit odd considering the vast majority of the show’s cast meet their parents at various points in the narrative. Although they could have perished when the Nine-Tails Fox attacked the Hidden Leaf Village, one would expect the series to mention that he and Naruto shared a bond as orphans if this were the case.
5 The Akatsuki’s Rings
The Akatsuki are almost certainly the most popular group of villains in anime history, and their impact on the Naruto franchise is hard to overstate. Still, there are several unexplained phenomena surrounding their operations, including the mysterious rings that they wear throughout the series.
The purpose of these rings is never stated, but many Naruto fans think that they play some sort of role in sealing the Tailed Beasts inside the Gedo Statue. Since the Akatsuki’s leaders were insistent upon recovering these rings, it’s safe to assume they played a major role in the group’s sinister plans.
4 The Death Of The First Hokage
The Hokage are arguably the strongest shinobi in the entire world, and out of all the ninja to hold this title, arguably none have been more impressive than the First Hokage, Hashirama Senju. Despite his legendary reputation, the specifics of Hashirama’s death are never mentioned, leaving Naruto fans to fill in the blanks for themselves.
Considering Hashirama’s strength in combat, it’s virtually impossible that he was killed in combat. Instead, many speculate that the founding member of the Hidden Leaf Village passed away due to an illness or complication from his regeneration technique.
3 Hidan’s Immortality
Each member of the Akatsuki possesses a wildly diverse set of skills; however, arguably none are more unique than that of Hidan. The scythe-wielding, loudmouthed shinobi benefits from legitimate immortality, making him extremely tough to kill in a fight.
Hidan attributes his immortality to his belief in a god named Jashin, and given his undeniable durability, it’s entirely possible that this deity actually exists. Others believe that the Akatsuki member created the idea of Jashin himself, insinuating that his powers are completely self-generated.
2 Madara Uchiha’s Mangekyo Sharingan Ability
Madara Uchiha is arguably the most powerful ninja to ever live, due in large part to his long list of overpowered techniques and abilities. Most of these powers stem from Madara’s mastery of his Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan, which he unlocked after receiving the eyes of his deceased brother.
Every other character that unlocks the Mangekyo Sharingan gains a unique jutsu by doing so, but despite his overwhelming strength and popularity, Madara never demonstrates any ocular technique that would fit this criterion. Some fans speculate that Limbo is his Mangekyo Sharingan’s specific ability, but it could just as easily be chalked up to the powers of the Ten-Tails.
1 Who Is The Leader Of The Otsutsuki Clan?
While Boruto explores the Otsutsuki Clan more thoroughly than its predecessor, the alien species still plays a pivotal role in the final sequence of Naruto: Shippuden. Naruto Uzumaki and his allies are barely able to defeat Kaguya Otsutsuki at the end of the Fourth Great Ninja, begging an obvious question after the dust settles: who is the leader of the Otsutsuki?
The answer to this question remains a mystery even after Boruto‘s timeskip, but one name is consistently mentioned as a possible candidate. Shibai Otsutsuki is said to have been a god of the Otsutsuki Clan, and after achieving the ability to control reality itself, it’s believed that he ascended to another dimension. However, it seems extremely unlikely that he won’t appear in Naruto franchise at some point, especially considering its affinity for reincarnating characters.
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