I love "Naruto," its what most of us grew up on. Heck, it was what got me invested in anime in the first place, but that doesn't mean it doesn't have its fair share of flaws. In comparing it to "Boruto," I think Boruto is a way better protagonist than Naruto, and if you stick around, I'll tell you why. In analyzing both characters, I won't discuss their strengths or power levels because that's not what makes a good protagonist. Instead, I am gonna look at their personality traits, beliefs, and motivations; I think these are the qualities that determine how good a protagonist is written.



Naruto is a titular protagonist whose goal is to train very hard so he can get the ultimate recognition from his village, becoming the Hokage. For me, Naruto as a protagonist is too simple. From the get-go, we knew what his motivations and goals were. He is your everyday underdog who will one day, despite the odds rise to be number one.

Don't get me wrong I do like underdogs, I think that's why most of us related to Naruto the way we did but that style of writing is a bit outdated unless done right as seen with my new favorite "My Hero Academia." But not to get too off topic, a good protagonist is one who completes what we call the "Heroes Journey" described by Joseph Campbell.

A simplified version of the Heroes Journey is when a character receives a call to action and refuses the call, something drastic then occurs to the character which leads to the character answering the call to action and set out on their journey.

This journey should instill some change in our protagonist as we watch them learn and grow.

To be fair Masashi Kishimoto does show us how Naruto grew as a character but his character traits did not change at all. His goal and motivation did not change at all throughout the story. Personally for me, what made Naruto the protagonist despite the series being named off him, his the amount of screen time he got. A character like Sasuke could have easily been the protagonist of Naruto looking at his character development from when we met him as genin right up to his final battle with Naruto.



On the surface, Boruto might seem like a spoiled brat who has daddy issues. However, if you should take a closer look at his character, you would see that he is much more complicated than that. Okay, Naruto grew up as an orphan which is very bad but as Sasuke said he didn't know the love of a happy family, to begin with, so he couldn't understand him and to some extent that is true.

Boruto knew what it was to be a happy family before Naruto became the Hokage and saw how the position of the Hokage destroyed his once loving family.

This causes him to resent the position of the Hokage and by extension his father. This then justifies Boruto's feelings to his father; this was not told explicitly to the audience rather it was inferred which is excellent writing in my eyes.

Boruto is a child prodigy mastering various ninjutsu as a genin; this makes him a bit cocky thinking he can solve every problem on his own. However, during the genin exam arc when he faced off with Kakashi, he soon realizes that he can't rely on his strength alone but also the strength of others.


As a protagonist, this is excellent character development.

As a protagonist, Boruto's motivations and goals are ever changing. At the moment what motivates Boruto is to be his own ninja and come from the shadows of his father while his goal is to be a shinobi similar to Sasuke, one goes on adventures and not limited to a desk. As Boruto travel on his Hero Journey, I am sure his motivation and goals will slightly shift as his character develops even more.

I enjoy both series, and, growing up "Naruto" was my favorite anime. That said, as a protagonist, he does not measure up to Boruto. So expect to see a weekly analysis of "Boruto" episodes from now on. Thanks for reading and have a good day.