Boruto being Naruto’s Tsukuyomi dream would be one of the biggest plot twists in all of anime history, yet this popular Naruto Shippuden fan theory doesn’t really work. Seven years after the end of the Naruto manga, theories and speculations regarding the events of the series never stopped. With Boruto building up from Naruto Shippuden’s last-minute reveal of aliens and interdimensional portals, Naruto Shippuden’s final batch of episodes became even more important. Still, while Boruto has started to create its own legacy, there are still those who believe Naruto’s story is not really over and that the battle against Madara during the Fourth Great Ninja War never came to an end.
With the Boruto anime already close to its sixth year, the Naruto sequel has built a strong enough foundation to sustain what could be an equally long-running series. That said, Boruto is bound to be often compared with Naruto, both by those who watch the sequel series and those who don’t. Continuing the legacy of Naruto would always be a difficult task, which is why Boruto often deals with an almost unfair level of criticism. Five years after the beginning of Boruto, one thing can be concluded – the Naruto sequel has its own identity and is not a new season of Naruto Shippuden.
How audiences, especially those who were already fans of Naruto, perceive Boruto can help understand why the Infinite Tsukuyomi theory has become so popular. While the idea of everything that happened after the fight against Madara in Naruto Shippuden is a dream created by Madara’s Infinite Tsukuyomi has been popular since Naruto’s final chapters, the “Boruto is Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi dream” theory has recently gained more track thanks to a viral YouTube short featuring Neil Kaplan, who voices Madara in Naruto Shippuden’s English dub, playing along with the idea of Boruto being the result of Madara’s ultimate genjutsu. However, as shocking and interesting as it would be for Boruto to reveal that Naruto never broke out of Madara’s genjutsu, this popular Naruto fan theory is a disservice both for the end of Naruto Shippuden and Boruto.
Boruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi Theory Explained
Before Naruto introduced Kaguya, Madara’s Infinite Tsukuyomi plan appeared to be the series’ endgame. From Itachi and Kisame infiltrating the Hidden Leaf Village in Naruto Part 1 to Naruto Shippuden’s Fourth Great Ninja War, the Naruto series was defined by the actions of the Akatsuki and its mysterious end goal. While the Akatsuki’s official plan according to Pain was to change the shinobi world’s power balance by collecting all nine Tailed Beasts, the Akatsuki’s true goal was only revealed after Nagato’s death. Tobi, who by then claimed to be Madara Uchiha, was the real leader of the Akatsuki and announced before the Five Kages what his plans really were – to create the ultimate genjutsu.
Madara Uchiha’s twisted views on the shinobi world led the legendary ninja to conclude that the world’s only hope would be a massive genjutsu powered by Naruto’s famous Tailed-Beasts that would remove all free will from humanity – a plan that was well received by Obito. Madara believed that humanity would only reach peace if trapped inside the Infinite Tsukuyomi. Instead of weaponizing the Ten-Tails, Madara wanted to bring back the original Tailed Beast in order to cast the Infinite Tsukuyomi on the moon and trap the entire world on the Tsukuyomi. Everyone trapped inside the Infinite Tsukuyomi would enter a Matrix-like dream state where they would live in their own personal paradise.
Madara succeeded at casting the Infinite Tsukuyomi, and Naruto Shippuden followed for a few episodes some of the characters’ dreams. Sasuke and Naruto eventually broke out of the Infinite Tsukuyomi and were able to return to the battlefield, yet the “Boruto is Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi’s dream” theory suggests that this never really happened. According to the theory, Naruto never broke out of the Infinite Tsukuyomi, and everything that happened after Naruto exited the dream state was actually just part of the illusion. The Infinite Tsukuyomi theory argues that Zetsu’s betrayal and Kaguya’s arrival are projections of Madara’s knowledge and that Naruto’s victory and sequential happy life were never real.
Is Boruto A Tsukuyomi Dream Created By Madara?
If the end of Naruto Shippuden is Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi dream, then so is Boruto. The Boruto series takes place a few years after the events of Naruto Shippuden, and it sees the result of the shinobi world peace achieved by Naruto and his friends at the end of the original series. Boruto’s peaceful world is a consequence of Naruto’s selfless actions in Naruto Shippuden, and the once impossible peace among all Hidden Villages makes it so that Boruto feels almost like a utopia. While Naruto’s next generation of heroes does have to face a lot of enemies, Boruto features a much more peaceful world than Naruto.
The fact that Boruto features such a good world in which most conflict has been resolved adds to the theory of Boruto being Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi dream. According to the theory, Naruto could not help but dream of a perfect world in which the cycle of pain described by Nagato no longer existed. Naruto would also obviously dream of having a family, as the character had to grow up alone due to the evil actions of Obito Uchiha. Boruto is Naruto’s dream life – Naruto is the Seventh Hokage, has a family, and the shinobi world has achieved piece. All of that considered, there are not many other hints to support the “Boruto is Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi dream” theory.
Why The Boruto Tsukuyomi Dream Theory Became So Popular
More than being a potential shocking reveal that traces back to Pokémon’s “Ash in a coma” theory, what really makes the Boruto Tsukuyomi dream theory so popular is the fact that the Naruto sequel series still hasn’t won over all of Naruto’s fans. Boruto has flaws, and being the sequel to one of the most popular anime of all time makes those flaws even more noticeable. Boruto has to deal with Naruto‘s comparisons ever since its first chapter, and those comparisons will probably never end. Naruto’s legacy will forever remain important, which is why the possibility of a new Naruto sequel that retcons Boruto as a dream feels so appealing to many. Not only would it undo Boruto’s entire story, but it would also revert the stories of Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura back to right before they entered Madara’s genjutsu.
Boruto Being A Tsukuyomi Dream Simply Doesn’t Work
As surprising as it would be to learn that Boruto is the result of a genjutsu, retconning the entire Boruto series as Naruto’s Infinite Tsukuyomi dream would be unreasonable. Boruto has become a strong IP by itself, which involves not only the manga and the anime but also countless other properties. Revealing that Boruto and all of its characters are nothing but an illusion created by Madara would mean the end of Boruto, and it would make the last seven years of Naruto content feel redundant. The theory also doesn’t work in terms of the story, as there are way too many new characters and storylines between the end of Naruto Shippuden and Boruto for it all to be a dream created by Madara.
Source: Neil Kaplan (via Youtube)