The following contains spoilers for Chapter 72 of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, “Smaller and More Useful”, by Masashi Kishimoto, Mikio Ikemoto, Mari Morimoto and Snir Aharon, now available in English from Viz Media.
Naruto’s son has certainly been in the doldrums in the Boruto manga. Not only did he have to witness Sasuke losing his Rinnegan and his dad almost dying after losing Kurama, but Boruto himself got killed when Momoshiki possessed him. It was all due to Kawaki, who used his new Karma mark to end Boruto in battle, thus saving the Hidden Leaf.
Thankfully, Boruto was revived when Momoshiki fixed his body, but things are still dicey as the Ōtsutsuki alien’s in his mind and hoping to take control of his psyche someday. But as the kid grapples with another potential dark fate, another major character has been rocked by all these incidents — Boruto’s mother, Hinata. However, while Chapter 72 confirmed she’s been broken, this could allow Boruto to rectify a major error that continued from the Naruto series.
Boruto Chapter 72 finds Hinata heartbroken over seeing Boruto heading out for a new mission with Team 7. She got scared, but it was part of the job. After all, a shinobi is meant to rebound quickly, and with Code threatening Konoha and Amado cutting a shady figure, Boruto can’t afford to waste time.
Still, it’s understandable that Hinata would be in tears, which provides an opportunity for more of her childhood peers to enter the fray again. Ino (Inojin’s mom), Sakura (Sarada’s mom) and Temari (Shikadai’s mom) can come together to support her, making up for how they’ve been sidelined throughout this franchise. They became housewives, while their husbands were more in the line of duty, so this gives them the agency they had during the Kaguya War, as key focal points in the village.
Apart from the emotional aspect, they can unite and teach the kids their specific techniques. It’d be great to see Boruto and Team 7 learning more mental jutsus from Ino, which could help sharpen his mind to isolate Momoshiki. Sakura can teach them more about chakra control (something she learned from Lady Tsunade), while Temari, who specialized in group combat with Gaara’s team, can tutor Team 7 more on contingency plans in case Boruto gets out of control again.
This way, they could corral Boruto rather than kill him. As such, these mothers would be looking out for one of their own, especially knowing they wouldn’t want their own kin murdered at the first sign of trouble. It’d be a powerful feminist statement too, in a franchise that has been very male-driven. And it wouldn’t just be style in this case, with badass women coming together to improve the young ninja clan.
Boruto could create a new arc of substance with them helping Hinata, who can also pass on her Byakugan ocular knowledge to help Boruto stem the potential possession within. Ultimately, it’d strengthen their bond as mother and son, while reminding Naruto loyalists how all these women played crucial roles in Konoha’s development — and that they’re still crucially important to its future.