After a three-month hiatus, Boruto is back in manga form with a new series titled Two Blue Vortex. Following the tradition of Naruto: Shippuden anime, Boruto: Two Blue Vortex will start with a time skip. This is particularly exciting as now we are one major step closer to the flash-forward scene that started the Boruto series that saw Boruto and Kawaki facing off in a destroy Konohagakure with Naruto Uzumaki said to not be around. Let’s find out how the timeskip starts off with Boruto: Two Blue Vortex Chapter 1.
Creator and Supervisor: Masashi Kishimoto
Artist: Mikio Ikemoto
Three years after Boruto Uzumaki and Sasuke Uchiha left Konohagakure to go on the run, Sarada Uchiha (who still has the Genin rank) gets into another argument with Eighth Hokage Shikamaru Nara about Boruto’s innocence. When this gets nowhere Sarada reminds Shikamaru that her role model was Naruto Uzumaki, not him.
Meanwhile, it is shown that Kawaki still watches over Naruto and Hinata in the dimension where they remain in stasis.
Back in Konohagakure, Sarada and Sumire Kakei discuss how at first Shikamaru and others felt something was off due to the paradoxes created by Ada’s Omnipotence that confusion has gone away over the last three years.
Sarada and Sumire visit Ada and Daemon to try to get more answers. Ada says because of how Omnipotence works she doesn’t know if there is a way to reverse its effects. Ada then wonders why Sarada and Sumire still have memories of the original timeline. Sarada and Sumire play it off but Daemon is unconvinced by their act.
Elsewhere, Kawaki does his best to calm Mitsuki and his killing intent towards Boruto. Kawaki also request Mitsuki stop following him around like a pervert.
In the forest Himawari Uzumaki is training with Choco Akimichi. After an impressive training session, Himawari admits to Chocho, Shikadai Nara, and Inojin Yamanaka that she doesn’t believe Boruto killer her parents and that something tells her they are still alive.
Elsewhere, Kawaki is working on shrinking all of Code’s Claw Marks. Kawaki discovers one of the Konoha shinobi with a Claw Mark on their neck. Kawaki immediately contacts Shikamaru to gather all the ninjas that have been investigating the Claw Mark so he can shrink them.
Suddenly Claw Grimes emerge throughout Konohagakure. Shikamaru immediately orders the village to be evacuated.
Somewhere in the village Code arrives and immediately confronts Sarada to draw out Boruto. This works as Boruto shows up by stepping on Code’s face.
Ada, Kawaki, and Konoha sensor shinobi sense Boruto’s arrival. Shikamaru orders everyone to prioritize fighting Code and the Claw Grimes but to stay alert if they spot Boruto.
Meanwhile, Boruto gets ready to fight Code with Sarada behind him. End of chapter.
The first chapter of Boruto: Two Blue Vortex isn’t all the surprising when it comes to the points the story hits. Everything is expected but that does not at all take away from the impact. This was all necessary set-up to get us into the mode of the world having moved on with the world created by Ada’s Omnipotence.
Right away, one thing Two Blue Vortex fixes from its Boruto predecessor is that there are more defined roles for more of the cast. One of the biggest problems the Boruto manga ran into is that it was completely focused on Boruto and Kawaki. There was very little room for other characters to develop as Code and other villains needed to be built up. Naruto was honestly lucky to get the development time he got.
That’s why dedicating Two Blue Vortex first chapter on showing the state of Konohagakure post-timeskip. Boruto and Kawaki are clearly still the main driving forces behind the story of the series but it was refreshing to see Sarada Uchiha, Sumire Kakei, Shikamaru Nara, Himawari Uzumaki, and others take the spotlight. Shikamaru becoming the Eighth Hokage in Naruto absence is a great status quo shift. Shikamaru has always been built by Masashi Kishimoto as someone who can assume the Hokage mantle. Even if Shikamaru prefers working in a support role he has clearly grown as a leader and someone others believe in his authority level.
Shikamaru as the Hokage also makes as a good contrast for how Sarada is established as one of the only people who know about the original timeline. Sarada is following in Naruto’s footsteps in more ways than one. For one, Kishimoto makes sure to emphasize that Sarada is still a Genin and her believing in Boruto like Naruto did in Sasuke, was a cool way to continue this aspect of her character. Even if she has not interacted with Naruto in the way Boruto or Kawaki have, Sarada finally feels like she has her own arc rather than playing nothing more than a supporting role as she did in the original Boruto manga.
Adding to Sarada’s importance is how Kishimoto positions her and Sumire to be key in breaking the Omnipotence or defeating Ada if she does a villainous turn. There is a good amount of tension placed on this sub-plot as while Sarada and Sumire play off why they know about the previous timeline Daemon shows he is suspicious of them. This immediately makes Sarada and Sumire’s sub-plot with Ada and Daemon a story arc to watch along with Boruto vs Kawaki and Code’s plot.
It also makes sense because three years have past that any remnants of people other than Sarada and Sumire questioning the paradoxes created by Ada’s Omnipotence have vanished. This is a smart use of a timeskip to explain why there aren’t other people like Shikamaru questioning aspects that don’t make sense about this timeline. This is the new normal for everyone but Boruto, Sarada, Sumire, and Sasuke.
The one part in this aspect of the story that Kishimoto does not nail is how Sarada is not shown as a badass fighter. The way Sarada ends Boruto: Two Blue Vortex Chapter 1 is reminiscent of her mother, Sakura. Like how Naruto and Sasuke normally showed up to save her, Sarada is similarly saved by Boruto making it appear she couldn’t hold her own even for a second against Code and Claw Grimes. Sarada is a character that should be a badass fighter and this did her no favors.
Hopefully Kishimoto does plan on showcasing Sarada and others as being capable on fighting on the level of Boruto, Kawaki, and Code. If not we will see a repeat of what made the original Boruto plotting come off as predictable and boring.
On the Kawaki side of things, we do see that while he remains calm that he is also on edge about the reality created by Ada’s Omnipotence. This works into how unlike Boruto, Kawaki still has a loner attitude. He didn’t grow up with friends or working in a team like Boruto did. This is something that Ada’s Omnipotence could not fix since Kawaki has all of his memories intact. We see this most with how there is an unsettling nature as to how Kawaki still checks up on Naruto and Hinata in the dimension they are trapped in.
Because of this Kawaki telling Mitsuki to stop stalking him is an interesting development. While Kawaki is working with other Konoha shinobi he is still taking it on himself to stop Code. He also is shown knowing what Boruto showing up at this moment could mean. Mikio Ikemoto does a great job in capturing Kawaki’s attitude through his facial reactions in all of these moments.
That said, Mitsuki continues to be a character that Kishimoto is swinging and missing on making a good part of the cast. Kawaki calling Mitsuki a pervert because of his stalking tendencies does not help his character. Kishimoto needs to be careful with how he portrays Mitsuki’s character because he could very well be an important character when it comes to the paradoxes created by Ada’s Omnipotence. But we could easily see Kishimoto fall down the rabbit hole of making Mitsuki’s stalker tendencies be his thing.
A bigger wild card with this aspect of the plot is Himawari Uzumaki. While she doesn’t know about the changes like Sarada and Sumire, it is shown that Himawari may be one of the few characters that still senses the paradoxes created by this new timeline. Her belief that Boruto didn’t kill Naruto and Hinata is a sign of this. This could potential play more into the connection of the Byakugan with the Otsutsuki’s Tenseigan. Hopefully Kishimoto and Ikemoto have the time to make Himawari a key part of the series.
Boruto’s appearance at the end of the chapter was also handled very well. Boruto has clearly changed a lot in the three years away. Gone is the happy go-lucky prodigy. Now we have a badass shinobi who has learned a lot from Sasuke. And its not just skills also in the way he carries himself. Ikemoto does a great job presenting Boruto as carrying a similar aura that Sasuke did in the timeskip. Seeing what this means for his relationships will be interesting to see play out over the course of the series.
Masashi Kishimoto and Mikio Ikemoto first chapter of Boruto: Two Blue Vortex is a strong new beginning. Sure, there are certain nitpicks about things not fixed from the original series but largely this is a vast improvement from the first Boruto manga. Characters like Sarada Uchiha and Sumire Kakei are given a greater sense of importance to the plot of the series. The scope is big right out of the gate with how the Code and Kawaki storylines are continued. Hopefully this all means Boruto and Kawaki aren’t made carry Two Blue Vortex like they did the original Boruto manga.
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10