Shueisha is celebrating 50 years of Weekly Shonen Jump in many ways, and one of the biggest is seeing the different creators share new art in celebration of this landmark birthday.
Naruto‘s Masashi Kishimoto got into the festivities as well, and his art for the occasion has a huge shout out to both Naruto‘s past and future as Boruto and his father Naruto examine a cool painting of Kishimoto’s oldest volume cover for the series.
For those that don’t recognize the mural the now adult Naruto and his son Boruto are admiring, it was the artwork Kishimoto drew for the very first volume of Naruto. This is a powerful image to fans since it’s the image that was the major marketing force for the series when it eventually made it way to territories outside of Japan.
To see Kishimoto make a reference to the very first cover he drew while highlighting how far the series has come since then really emphasizes how far Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump has come in its 50 years of publishing as well. Kishimoto’s story has characters who have had adventures for literal generations, and there’s no sign of stopping yet.
For those unfamiliar with Naruto, it has quite a storied history. Originally created by Masashi Kishimoto, the series ran in Shueisha’s Weekly Shonen Jump for 700 chapters. The story follows Naruto, a young ninja with a sealed demon within him that wishes to become the leader of his home village. The sequel, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations is set several years after the events of the original Naruto story and featuring the children of many of its key characters such as Naruto and Hinata.
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations recently made TV Tokyo’s list of Top 5 Anime in sales and profits, coming third in sales and fifth and profits. The anime has been such a success that the Naruto franchise as a whole stills holds a top spot in many anime profits rankings as well. The series even managed to cross 235 million copies of the manga sold worldwide. Boruto: Naruto Next Generations was even given a major bump of approval as it just took over a more familiar timeslot, airing in the same time and day that its predecessor Naruto: Shippuden once did.