A story as long as Naruto is bound to have a problem or two in its ongoing plot. No author could possibly plan things out perfectly in a story that spanned several hundred episodes. After all, no story is perfect. Over time, fans have pointed out several inconsistencies and plot holes in the anime.
Naruto lives inside a complex world with a well-defined power system and some political intrigue. With all the complicated events the characters have to face, it comes as no surprise that some elements don’t fit as perfectly as others. While plot holes can cause annoyance among fans, Naruto remains a fantastic anime.
Updated on January 5th, 2023 by Chelsea Steele: There’s no denying that Naruto has one of the most incredible universes in all of anime. However, even this beloved shonen classic has its weak points in the story, including many unresolved plot holes that confuse fans to this day. This list has been updated to include several more plot holes and flaws that just don’t sit well with most viewers.
15/15 Sakura’s Development Stopped For No Real Reason
Out of Team 7, Sakura has always been the weakest link. From the very start, she was trailing behind Naruto and Sasuke, showing little skill aside from her book smarts. However, there’s no denying that she made some serious improvement along the way, showing a lot of potential as a kunoichi.
With the major role she played in early missions in Shippuden, it seemed like Sakura was finally getting the development she deserved. However, her progress suddenly halted, and most fans didn’t understand why. As a result, all of Sakura’s potential went to waste, and she never became the exceptional ninja she could’ve been.
14/15 Danzo Could’ve Easily Attacked The Hidden Leaf Earlier
Danzo’s thirst for power and control of the Hidden Leaf didn’t come into play until Naruto Shippuden. However, he’d been plotting and waiting to make his move for quite a long time. While it made sense that he went on the assault during Konoha’s time of weakness, Danzo had another opportunity to do this much sooner.
Had Danzo attempted to take control of the village after Orochimaru’s attack and the death of the Third Hokage, he might’ve actually been successful. Considering Danzo was aware of this event, it made no sense that he didn’t at least try to take advantage of it.
13/15 The Akatsuki Served Little Purpose & Their Role Was Never Fully Explained
The Akatsuki were an ever-present threat throughout the anime, especially during Naruto Shippuden. They’re some of the most memorable villains in the entire story and played a major role in many events. Despite their importance, they surprisingly served very little purpose in the grand scheme of things.
The Akatsuki’s true role never got explained, and they simply seemed like a tool for Obito to use. However, it’s never clear why he even needed them in the first place. Obito was clearly strong enough to accomplish his plan on his own, and the Akatsuki barely helped him in the end, since most got killed off fairly early on.
12/15 Neji’s Death Could’ve Easily Been Avoided
There are plenty of shocking and heartbreaking deaths throughout Naruto, but few broke fans quite like the sudden death of Neji Hyuga. During the Fourth Ninja War, Neji sacrificed his life to save both Naruto and Hinata during the Ten Tails’ attack.
However, many fans argue that Neji’s death didn’t need to happen at all and could’ve easily been avoided. Anyone familiar with Neji knows that he’s a genius shinobi, possessing some of the most powerful techniques of the Konoha 11. Without a doubt, Neji could’ve saved Naruto and Hinata without losing his life. His death merely occurred because the plot demanded it.
11/15 The Moon’s Eye Plan Was Flawed From The Start
When Obito was revealed as the big bad of the anime, his master plan finally came out. In this “Moon’s Eye” plan, all of humanity would find themselves trapped inside a powerful genjutsu, in a supposed effort to end all conflict and save the world from destroying itself.
However, if everyone remained in a genjutsu forever, humanity would eventually die out anyway, causing the very thing Obito hoped to prevent. Despite years of planning, it’s clear that Obito didn’t exactly think this through very well, or he would’ve seen this glaring flaw ages ago.
10/15 Naruto Failed The Graduation Exam Three Times
It’s shown in flashbacks that Naruto went to school with the same people his whole life. Later, he admitted that he had failed the graduation exam three times. The anime never explained how Naruto was allowed to take the test before the rest of his class.
If they were allowed to take the test early, surely Sasuke or Neji would’ve graduated ahead of their classmates. Yet, they were both put on a three-man team with people who were in their age group. Sasuke was slightly older than Naruto, so Naruto couldn’t have been held back like Iwabee in Boruto.
9/15 Lee Passed The Graduation Exam
Before Naruto could graduate from the academy, he had to successfully create a clone. Naruto himself failed to graduate when he wasn’t able to make one. Initially, he was going to be held back.
Rock Lee was an outstanding ninja, but he wasn’t very good with ninjutsu. While his taijutsu skills were great, that alone wouldn’t have given him the ability to pass the test. Somehow, Lee was allowed to graduate and join a shinobi team. Lee should have been held back like Naruto.
8/15 Sakura Continued To Love Sasuke
Sakura loved Sasuke no matter what he did — even after he left her behind in the village without looking back. She loved him even though she had gone a long period of time without seeing him. Sakura continued to love him even after he attempted to kill her.
Naruto never gave viewers a good reason why Sakura would continue to love Sasuke. She seemed to only love him for his looks, yet her feelings for him continued on no matter what he did to her or how he treated her.
7/15 Obito Never Went Blind Despite His Sharingan Usage
Itachi, Sasuke, and Madara all suffered eye strain due to the overuse of their Sharingan power. Madara managed to fix his blindness by transplanting his brother’s eyes. Sasuke’s eyes were fixed when Itachi left his eyes to his brother.
Despite the heavy use of his Sharingan, Obito never appeared to struggle or experience any strain. Surely, Obito should have been slowly losing his eyesight, like the rest of his clan. He only had one Sharingan, but he somehow still managed to surpass every other member of his clan.
6/15 Obito Should Have Died But Didn’t
There were several times within the series that Obito should have died but somehow survived. A major turning point in his story was when he was crushed by some falling rocks. His teammates thought that he was killed, but Obito survived.
That was just the first in a series of near-death experiences Obito faced. Obito managed to survive a bijuu extraction and a fight with Minato. Without explanation, Obito somehow overcame fatal circumstances a multitude of times, proving himself stronger than death.
5/15 Nobody Figured Out Who Naruto Really Was
After Naruto met his parents, he learned that he had his mother’s face and father’s hair. People who knew his parents should have easily been able to guess his true parentage. Naruto lived in a village full of ninja, and some of them collected information from other villages.
Yet, nobody seemed to notice that Naruto had Kushina’s face or surname. No one ever questioned how Naruto showed up moments after Kushina and Minato seemingly died. The truth of Naruto’s heritage should’ve spread around the village like wildfire.
4/15 Hinata’s Fight With Pain Needlessly Risked Her Life
When Pain attacked the village, he was searching for Naruto. Naruto didn’t allow his village to face the threat alone and rushed back to help. He didn’t have a lot of luck when forced to fight Pain. Luckily, Hinata came to his aid.
Hinata was treated like a princess within her clan. Even though she had lost her position as the heiress, the clan still took care of her. Before Hinata entered the battle, she was seen with other members of the Hyuga Clan. Protecting Hinata should’ve been a greater priority for the rest of the Hyuga.
3/15 Itachi Didn’t Kill Danzo When He Had Every Reason To
Itachi was incredibly concerned about the wellbeing of his village and his clan. When he was torn between the two, he chose to protect Konoha. Itachi was well-aware of an internal threat, but he didn’t do anything about it.
Danzo had killed Itachi’s best friend. Shisui’s death was a contributing factor to the rising tensions between the Uchiha Clan and the rest of the village. Additionally, Danzo proved to be an ongoing threat to the safety of Itachi’s beloved younger brother. Itachi should’ve dealt with Danzo and the threat he posed.
2/15 Hiruzen Didn’t Take Care Of Naruto Like He Promised
In Minato and Kushina’s final moments, they made Hiruzen promise to take care of their newborn son. Even though Naruto’s parentage was kept a secret, Hiruzen knew Naruto was the son of one of the village’s highest-ranking shinobi. As the jinchuriki of Konoha, Naruto was an important part of the village’s defense.
Despite all of these things, Naruto was treated like an outcast in the village. Hiruzen appeared to do the bare minimum when it came to making sure Naruto had his basic needs met. In essence, Hiruzen didn’t keep his promise to the fourth hokage.
1/15 Naruto & Sasuke Defeated An Otsutsuki
When Boruto defeated Momoshiki, he received the power of an Otsutsuki. Momoshiki told Boruto that the Otsutsuki Clan always passed their power on to those who defeated them. However, the mark placed on Boruto’s hand felt more like a curse than an asset.
When Naruto and Sasuke faced off against Kaguya, they were facing the toughest battle of their careers. Despite the odds being against them, they managed to defeat her. As a reward, they should’ve received her power.
NEXT: Every Naruto Filler Arc (& Which Episodes To Skip)