Boruto Episode 184

Boruto Episode 184

Scientific Ninja Puppets

Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 184 is all about scientific ninja tools. Specifically, there are three new scientific ninja tools introduced (or revealed) within the episode. First, there’s Katasuke’s mecha suit. Second, there are the autonomous “puppets.” And third, there’s Ao’s ninja tool minigun.

You could argue that Ao has more ninja tools built into his body that are revealed. However, I’m going to classify those in the same way I in which I would classify all the weapons hidden within Sasori’s body. They’re internal body modifications, whereas scientific ninja tools are generally external.

Anyway, let’s start with the autonomous “puppets.” I’m not sure that these really count as puppets at this point since puppets imply that someone is controlling them. Let’s call them automatons instead.

Scientific ninja tool puppets using the fireball jutsu from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Scientific ninja tool puppets using the fireball jutsu

What makes these automatons dangerous is that they’re not like your standard puppets that attack with physical weapons. They can actually use jutsu. Of course, we’ve seen puppets that can use jutsu in the past. But I believe the only ones capable of that were those made out of human corpses.

Also, the human corpse puppets could only use the jutsu that they could when they were alive. Technically, these automatons can use any jutsu as long as they’re equipped with the cartridge for it — like how Boruto was able to use the Purple Lightning jutsu during the chunin exam.

Katasuke’s mecha suit is the perfect counter to these automatons, though. While clunky, it can absorb jutsu much like Momoshiki was able to. Well, at least that’s what the gloves do. It’s unclear what the purpose of the rest of the suit is considering Ao was able to use one of the gloves by itself.

Jutsu Bomb Minigun

The third scientific ninja tool of the episode is the minigun Ao uses. At first, I thought it was odd that a gun was being referred to as a scientific ninja tool. But once Ao began using it, it became clear why it’s classified as one. It fires “jutsu bombs” rather than bullets.

A jutsu bomb is basically a ball of a specific chakra nature that explodes upon impact. You can think of them like mini tailed beast bombs. Tailed beast bombs are much larger and are combinations of all five basic elemental chakra natures.

Of the basic elemental natures, I’d say Ao’s minigun uses the best one for this specific job. It shoots fireballs that explode on impact, which is pretty powerful. Earth jutsu bombs would probably be the second-best since they would explode into shrapnel. Lighting would come next. And then you could make an argument for either wind or water being the worst.

Ao using a jutsu bomb minigun from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Ao using a jutsu bomb minigun

In theory, we could make this minigun even stronger. It’s unclear whether or not a jutsu bomb can be created using non-basic elemental natures. But if they can, and you could shoot dust chakra, that would be extremely overpowered. If you’re not aware, dust (or particle) style is a kekkei tōta nature that combines earth, wind, and fire. Anything that comes into contact with it is disintegrated.

But, let’s assume that jutsu bombs can only be realistically created using the basic elemental natures. Could we still power up Ao’s minigun? Probably. His minigun has four barrels, which means it could be loaded with four different chakra natures at once.

Or, you could load it with complementary natures. For example, if one or two of the barrels were to be loaded with wind chakra, they would power up the fire chakra jutsu bombs. Similarly, you could combine water and lightning natures.

Mugino’s Sacrifice

I’ve been saying for months that Mugino was going to die, and it looks like he finally has. His death shouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone. The series has been setting up obvious death flags for him for a very long time. But with that said, I honestly didn’t expect it to happen in this episode.

Once Mugino was wounded, it was clear that his time was coming. After all, since his wound is serious, he would have just been slowing down his comrades. At least this way he’s able to go out on his own terms while being helpful to the end.

Of course, there’s also the possibility that Mugino isn’t dead quite yet. He could show up one, final time before dying for real. Or, it’s possible that Katasuke will somehow be able to save him as he did for Ao after the war. We may even see Mugino be saved using pieces of Ao’s prosthetics.

Mugino taking Ao down with him from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Mugino taking Ao down with him

That said, I do think Mugino is dead. Saving him would feel a bit cheap considering all the death flags that have been set. Sure, it would work well into the whole plot about technology not being inherently good or evil. But I think Mugino’s death actually adds more to the series than his survival would.

Mugino dying at the hands of a Kara Outer makes the fight against Kara a personal one. Also, it’s been a while since a “good guy” died in this series. The only other one I can think of within Boruto is Onoki — the Third Tsuchikage. With that in mind, any death of a “good” character is going to be important.

I do think Ao is going to die as well, but he’s more “bad” than “good” right now. He’ll probably have a change of heart right before he dies, though, as I’ve said before — which is why I said Mugino could be saved via Ao’s prosthetics. For Ao, I really don’t see what he’d bring to the series in the long-term if he survived.

Conclusion

What do you think of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 184? Do body modifications count as scientific ninja tools? Is the existence of a minigun in the Boruto universe a bit too out-there for you? And do you think Mugino actually died in this episode? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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