The Naruto anime has undergone some spectacular changes all thanks to these 10 moments.
As a long-running anime series with hundreds of episodes and memorable arcs along the way, Naruto was always full of unexpected twists and turns. Left and right, new enemies would appear, heroes would fall, goals would shift, and Naruto would be forced to find a way out of yet another dicey situation.
Some of the biggest moments were so impactful that they would forever change the direction of the story. Whether it was a step forward for Naruto, a new beginning for Sasuke, or a major plot twist on the enemies' end, these moments will never be forgotten for how they spiced up the series altogether.
10. When Naruto Stole The Scroll Of Seals
Naruto's journey to becoming a full-fledged ninja truly began after he stole the secret Scroll of Seals, which contained forbidden techniques including the Multi Shadow Clone technique. Just by taking a moment to examine the scroll, Naruto was able to master the jutsu that would become one of his signature techniques.
Interestingly enough, if Naruto hadn't stolen the scroll, he would not have learned the Clone technique needed to pass the academy graduation exam and become a genin. This meant he would have missed the opportunity to be on the same team as Sasuke and Sakura.
9. Orochimaru's Introduction
Going into the Chunin Exams, there weren't any villains on Naruto's radar for the time being. This changed in the Forest of Death where Naruto's team first came face to face with Orochimaru.
In their initial meeting, Orochimaru was presented as a creepy and mysterious character who had a notable interest in Sasuke. He left Sasuke with a Cursed Seal that planted the seeds in Sasuke's head to walk a dark path.
8. When Sasuke Left The Village
After receiving the Cursed Seal and seeing Naruto's growth, Sasuke came to the conclusion that it would be best for him to leave his village and friends behind to start a new path for himself. In this way, he felt that he could solely focus on growing stronger for the sake of revenge.
Sasuke's abandonment of the village no doubt changed the direction of the story. Naruto's priority shifted from becoming Hokage to saving his best friend. And from that point forward, bringing Sasuke back remained a key motive through the end of the series.
7. Meeting Jiraiya
Naruto had several notable teachers throughout the series, but Jiraiya was perhaps the one who left the biggest impact on him.
Because Naruto met Jiraiya, he was able to master the Rasengan, become acquainted with the toads who taught him Sage Mode, and ultimately fulfilled the prophecy mentioned to Jiraiya by the Great Toad Sage. It was Jiraiya's duty to set Naruto down the right path for peace, and he nailed it.
6. Shadow Clone Shortcut
To become a splendid ninja, one must be willing to put all their time and effort into training and honing their technique. Initially, Naruto had to put in hours and hours to learn how to run up trees and perfect the Rasengan.
However, it wasn't until later in the series when Kakashi finally shared a handy tip to Naruto that would significantly speed up the training process. By creating multiple Shadow Clones and having them all train at once, Naruto could quickly acquire each clone's knowledge and experience that they gained through the training session.
5. The Truth Behind The Uchiha Massacre
For the longest time, Itachi's reason for murdering his own clan was unknown. That mystery did not, however, stop Sasuke from vowing to someday get revenge on his older brother.
Following Itachi's death, the truth of the Uchiha massacre was revealed by Tobi. Unbeknownst to many villagers including Sasuke, the Uchiha Clan was actually planning a coup against Konohagakure. Therefore, Itachi was ordered to eliminate his clan on behalf of the village. With this knowledge, Sasuke shifted his plans of revenge onto the village.
4. Pain's Defeat
At the beginning of the series, no one in the village had any respect for Naruto who carried the Nine-Tailed Fox inside of him. But as time went on, the villagers slowly began to see the knucklehead ninja in a new light.
In particular, Naruto's victory over Pain established a stronger relationship between him and the villagers. For saving Konohagakure from mass casualties and further destruction, Naruto was finally shown the respect he deserved from the village.
3. Obito's Return
First introduced in the Kakashi Chronicles, Obito was one of Kakashi's comrades who was apparently crushed to his death by a boulder during the Third Shinobi War. Since then, Kakashi remembered his dear friend as a hero who taught him important lessons to live by.
This heroic image of Obito was destroyed when he was revealed to be the true identity of Tobi, the masked man of the Akatsuki. As it turned out, Obito was actually saved and later manipulated by Madara before he could perish under that boulder.
2. Sasuke's Talk With The Kages
After learning the truth about the village's role in the murder of the Uchiha Clan, Sasuke had set his sights on destroying Konohagakure. Before he could do so, the resurrection of the previous Kages in the Fourth Shinobi War gave Sasuke the opportunity to get more information.
Once he heard the Kages out, Sasuke got the clarity and closure he needed to rejoin Konohagakure and assist the Allied Shinobi Forces. Without that pivotal conversation, Sasuke might not have been around to fight off Madara and Kaguya.
1. Zetsu's Secret
Just when everyone thought Madara would be the final villain to close out the series, Zetsu literally stabbed him in the back and revealed that he was the true mastermind behind many of the events that led up to the Fourth Shinobi War.
Suddenly, the antagonist role shifted from Madara to Kaguya Otsutsuki, who Zetsu had worked so hard to resurrect. Additionally, this opened up a new area of discussion as to what the Otsutsuki Clan was.