Unless Naruto is able to pull some sort of time-traveling jutsu, it looks like the ninja’s anime is coming to an end. For some time now, Naruto Shippuden has continued to air new episodes even after the series hit the end of Masashi Kishimoto’s manga. The long-running anime has simply been adapting canon epilogue novels to bide some time, but the clock will soon run out for Naruto Shippuden. Come April, the anime will see its legacy continued when a new spin-off title makes it debut on TV Tokyo. And, now, fans have learned Naruto’s long-held timeslot has been taken by something else.
Just days ago, fans discovered the timeslot’s change thanks to Level-5, a game developer in Japan. The company confirmed its anime titled The Snack World will air on TV Tokyo now at 7:25 p.m. on Thursdays. The new show will kick off on April 13th, just a few days after Boruto: Naruto Next Generations premieres.
So far, TV Tokyo has made no comment on the move or said if Naruto Shippuden might be moved for any reason. If it were, then the show would give fans hope that it was not ending quite yet - but it looks like the writing is now on the wall.
Of course, fans have been up-and-down about the anime’s end since no official word has been given about it. Neither TV Tokyo or Studio Pierrot have explicitly stated Naruto Shippuden will wrap with its next episode, but the signs of its retirement are hard to ignore.
In the next episode of Naruto Shippuden, the anime will wrap up it current and final epilogue arc. The show has been finishing up its take on Konoha Hiden, and the arc’s final episode will air on March 23rd. The last piece is said to focus on Naruto’s actual wedding to Hinata Hyuga and Iruka’s parting message to his pupil before the ninja exchanges vows.
There is also the fact that Boruto: Naruto Next Generations will be coming to TV. The show will be hosted by TV Tokyo, and it seems unlikely that the network would air two shows from the same franchise. The new anime will also feature Naruto as a side character as the show focuses on the oldest child of the now-Hokage.
Still, the loss of Naruto Shippuden will be hard for some anime fans to swallow. The show had been on air for more than a decade, and it has become one of the medium’s most popular titles ever. Naruto Shippuden is responsible for converting millions of anime fans, and its absence will be a bitter pill to take.