Warning: Contains spoilers for Naruto: Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust chapter 4.If there’s anything to conclude from the latest Naruto sequel, Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust, it’s that it’s the best Sakura story to come out of the franchise in a decade. When Naruto starts to suffer from an illness that once plagued the Sage of the Six Paths, Sasuke travels to the land of Redaku, where the Sage seemed to have found a cure. As Sasuke slowly makes progress in his investigation, he learns that Sakura had secretly followed him to Redaku, and the two of them begin looking for Naruto’s cure together.
Not only is Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust the first time in years that Sakura’s had a starring role, but it also stands out as the best story she’s had in Masashi Kishimoto’s Naruto since the original series. Not only does the story finally make use of Sakura’s true talent, but it even succeeds at making one of the more controversial aspects of Naruto finally work. Sakura has long since been one of Naruto’s more controversial characters, so seeing this sequel story treat her so well is a great sight to behold.
Naruto’s Sequel Remembers What Sakura’s True Character Is
In early Naruto, Sakura was characterized as the smart one of the main trio; she was often the one coming up with their strategies, she was the quickest to get a handle on tree climbing, and she was the only Genin to finish the written portion of the Chunin exams without cheating. By the time of 2007’s Naruto: Shippuden, however, Sakura largely fell to the wayside, and going right along with that, there ended up being fewer opportunities for her to show off her intelligence.
Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust, however, does a great job of bringing that part of her character back. When the only way to get to another clue for Naruto’s cure is to beat someone in a card game, Sakura was able to win by memorizing all the tiny scratches on the cards so she’d always know the right hands to make. While it’s a small thing, it’s still an impressive feat of intelligence that shows Sakura being smarter than the other characters around her, and that, in turn, makes the story far truer to her character than Naruto made her in its later years.
Naruto’s Sequel Finally Fixes Sasuke & Sakura’s Relationship
Another reason why Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust is such a good Sakura story is for finally fixing some of the problems with Sasuke and Sakura’s relationship. Despite being one of the main couples, Sasuke and Sakura’s relationship has often been a sight of controversy in Naruto. Sakura has been criticized for having so much of her character revolve around her feelings for Sasuke, especially in the later parts of the series, and Sasuke has been criticized for rarely ever showing affection for Sakura, even after they get married and start a family together.
There are many problems with Sasuke and Sakura’s relationship, but Sasuke’s Story—The Uchiha and the Heavenly Stardust does a lot to fix it. Sasuke shows more concern and affection for Sakura than in other stories, even giving her a wedding ring because he wants people to know they’re married. As for Naruto‘s heroine Sakura, while she’s still very affectionate toward Sasuke, she’s largely levelheaded and focused mostly on helping Naruto, a far cry from how she’s often depicted. Overall, their relationship is written as being far healthier than usual, and that, along with showing off Sakura’s intelligence, does a lot to make this such a great story for Sakura.