Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 228 shows Naruto giving Kawaki the chance to officially become a Leaf village shinobi. Despite living in the Uzumaki household, Kawaki is still kind of a wayward soul at this point, with only one obsessive goal: to get strong enough to protect Naruto.
Coinciding with the manga chapter 58, which shows Kawaki training to be a shinobi with Boruto’s Team 7, this anime episode seems to provide a more extensive background.
Boruto episode 228 highlights
Kawaki goes on missions
At the very end of Boruto episode 226, we see Kawaki telling Naruto he might be up for trying to become a genin, which Naruto takes him upon. Naruto and Shikamaru agree that Kawaki’s skills are undeniable and assign him to teams other than Team 7 on D-ranked missions. They stress that Kawaki must be able to cooperate and work with people other than Boruto and his team to qualify as a genin.
However, things don’t go as planned, with Kawaki being stand-offish and acting on his own, with no concept of teamwork. He openly tells the other team members that he isn’t friends with them. He acts coldly towards Shikadai as well, who though not particularly enthusiastic or forgiving about it, correctly identifies his problem. This is something that Shikamaru and Naruto also talk about in the Hokage office: Kawaki had grown up in a completely different and much brutal atmosphere with no room for trust or camaraderie between friends or partners.
C-rank mission to the Land of Waves
While Shikamaru is ready to give up hope, Naruto wonders if the missions are too easy, assigning him on a C-rank assignment with Shikadai and Cho-Cho to the Land of Waves. Kawaki, meanwhile, had already come to his own conclusions and told Naruto that he wasn’t suited to become a shinobi. Hearing this, Shikadai leaves as well, stating that they would leave the following day and leave the rest of it to Kawaki.
Shikamaru is skeptical of Naruto’s decision to let Kawaki leave Konoha. His body is an asset for people seeking Kara or Amado’s technology, but the Hokage reasons that he cannot possibly be kept caged up inside the village forever. If Kawaki is able to become a shinobi and forge bonds with his comrades, they will protect him.
The mission itself is also an interesting choice. Because the Naruto series, being exceptionally similar to Naruto’s first mission with Team 7. Naruto had also traveled to the Land of Waves, where they faced off against Zabuza and Haku for the first time.
Kawaki confronts Boruto and talks to Sarada
Kawaki gets his first pay ever due to his contribution in the missions he had participated in despite not being a proper genin, and after confirming if he can spend it, he goes to a sweet stall. He ends up buying taiyaki for everyone and comes home just to find Boruto waiting for him.
Boruto tries to chastise him, worrying that he would lose the opportunity to become a shinobi. But Kawaki reacts badly, running off to train after repeating stubbornly that he doesn’t need to team up with anyone other than Boruto.
He comes across Sarada, surprised to see her still training. He openly acknowledged her skill, asking why she worked so hard despite being a chunin. She says that she wants to become like Naruto and protect this village. Sarada recognizes that there is only so much she can do by herself and must rely on her comrades. Kawaki says almost bitterly that there is no village where he belongs and walks away.
Despite it all, the next morning, Kawaki appears just as Shikadai and Cho-Cho are about to leave. Their client remarks haughtily that he just might want a discount, taking into account Kawaki’s attitude and tardiness. With Kawaki’s first proper mission outside Konoha beginning, Boruto episode 229 is bound to be exciting.
Preview to Boruto episode 229
The episode, titled “Breach of Orders,” is set to air on December 19, 2021, and will focus more on Kawaki’s mission. Boruto and Sarada appear as well in the episode but on a separate task. Kawaki being a major character in the series, it is possible this arc about Kawaki becoming a genin will span over episodes 229-230, very appropriately ending on December 26, 2021. After that, the anime will be going on a one-week hiatus.
Since Kawaki’s first appearance in the show, we have seen Kawaki slowly becoming almost aggressively protective towards Naruto, viewing him as a father figure. He also has an abrasive understanding with Boruto as a brother and has a soft sport for Himawari. Though he works fairly well with Sarada and Mitsuki, it is only due to them being close to Boruto.
But Kawaki does not seem to have friends, nor does he understand how to interact with others. This anime-only arc seems to gently guide the story, in contrast to the sharply episodic pace of the manga. With the anime already having adapted up till chapter 55, Kawaki’s alienation might provide a good entry point into the Code arc once it gets adapted.