With over 700 episodes, one should not take everyone’s favorite entertainment anime Naruto (1999) as a joke. The anime series is one of the best made to date, but it can be one hell of a task to complete the series. By chance, if you have completed the series and are looking to revisit some of the best Naruto episodes, you may be more confused than ever. Why? It is because every other episode of the series seems to be the best!
One of the most popular anime series Naruto made its debut on TV screens more than a decade ago. Based on the manga of the same name written by Masashi Kishimoto, the story follows the adventure of a young boy, Naruto Uzumaki, who is hell-bent on becoming the Hokage of the Leaf village. Naruto is accompanied by his experiences with his team members Kakashi Hatake, Sasuke Uchiha, and Sakura Haruno.
From the heartfelt confrontations to the greatest fights, Naruto has given fans a lot of reasons to remember the epic franchise. Despite its vast number of episodes spread over multiple story arcs, fans have always enjoyed watching the series. Once you are done with the series, you will find yourself going back to it sooner or later. Due to the hectic schedules, it may not be easy to rewatch the complete series. However, you can always stream the best Naruto episodes to remember one of the greatest shonen classics.
Now that I have your full attention keep reading to find the list of the best Naruto episodes that will make you laugh the loudest and cry the ugliest.
Table of Contents
Best Naruto Episodes | Revisit Your Favorite Anime Series With The Best!
Have you ever thought about the reason(s) behind Naruto’s ever-growing popularity? Even a decade later, people are invested in the series, and every now and then, they take time to rewatch the series. The anime series Naruto isn’t only a great source of entertainment, but it also teaches you a lot about life. Trust me. There are so many important life lessons that one can learn from Naruto and its amazing characters.
#1 The Demon In The Snow | ザブザ雪に散る
Known to be one of the most beloved arcs of the series, The Land of Waves is pretty much the reason why I cried for the first time during the series. The first villain of the series Zabuza Momochi is no less than a hurricane, but with a heart that shattered into pieces after his protege’s death. The particular episode of the series concluded the long battle between Zabuza and Team 7 but at the cost of Haku’s death.
While Kakashi was aiming to strike Zabuza, Haku came between them and took the blow. The moment of Haku’s death and Zabuza’s change of heart served as an important lesson later in the series.
Episode – 19
IMDb Rating – 8.8
#2 The Fifth Gate: A Splendid Ninja Is Born | 嗚呼ロック·リー! これが男の生き様よ
Rock Lee wasn’t everyone’s favorite character at the beginning of the series, but after this episode, the respect everyone had for him was on a different level. Set during the arc of chunin exams in Naruto, this episode opened the eyes of everyone and showed the full potential of Rock Lee’s powers. Rock Lee is an expert in Taijutsu, and the eight-gate ninja technique was good proof of that.
However, in the episode, he could only go as far as to open the fifth gate that almost cost him his life in the fight against Gaara. Gaara may have won the match, but Lee won hearts.
Episode – 50
IMDb Rating – 9.0
#3 A Failure’s True Power | 落ちこぼれの底力
Another episode set during the Chunin exam arc, A Failure’s True Power (2003), made it clear that Naruto Uzumaki was determined to become the Hokage, and no one could ever come in between his dream. Neji Hyuga looked down to Naruto from the beginning of the series, and when the two were facing each other in the match, he made it a point to bring him down.
However, Naruto being Naruto, took every last of Neji’s hits and kicks and, in the end, served him a taste of his own medicine. Naruto not only won the round, but he also helped Neji to understand that no one is tied to their destiny.
Episode – 62
IMDb Rating – 8.5
#4 Naruto’s Ninja Handbook | 爆発!これぞナルト忍法帖〜〜っ
Naruto’s Ninja Handbook (2004) is everyone’s favorite episode from the series, and for good reasons. This is the episode where Naruto encounters another Jinchuriki like him and realizes how blessed he is to have a team that has his back and his loved ones. Unlike Naruto (Kurama’s Jinchriki), Gaara (Shukaku’s Jinchuriki) was abandoned right from his birth, which made his heart full of hate and anger.
After fighting Gaara and helping him understand the importance of love, fans were rejoiced to see Gaara walking down the path of redemption.
Episode – 78
IMDb Rating – 8.8
#5 Beyond The Limit Of Darkness And Light | リミットぶっちぎり! 〜光と闇〜
Continuing the events of Orochimaru’s infiltration into the Hidden Leaf village, this episode was dedicated to the big face-off between Orochimaru and Hiruzen Sarutobi. Orochimaru kept the Third Hokage, aka his former sensei, trapped in a cage set up by his followers. Many viewers did not think Hiruzen would fight because of his age, but the oldie did more than a good job.
As the ultimate move, Hiruzen used one of his special Jutsu to paralyze Orochimaru’s arms so he could not make any hand signs. However, the win over the enemy came at a heartbreaking cost to Hiruzen Sarutobi’s life, leaving Konoha in desperate need of a new leader.
Episode – 79
IMDb Rating – 8.9
#6 A Plea From A Friend | 親友よ
Determined to bring Sasuke back to Konohagakure, Naruto decides to confront Sasuke and make him realize his mistake of leaving Konoha. Much to fans’ disappointment, Sasuke had other plans. In his heart, Sasuke knew Naruto was the only person closest to him after Itachi’s betrayal. Instead of going back with Naruto, Sasuke thought it was important for him to destroy his comrade if he wanted to grow strong.
Sasuke kept pushing Naruto throughout the entire episode, provoking him to attack back, but the latter only kept taking the blows. Naruto kept reminding Sasuke of their bond, which only infuriated the last Uchiha more and more.
Episode – 132
IMDb Rating – 8.7
#7 The End Of Tears | 涙雨の結末
Continuing the events of episode 132, The End of Tears (2005) witnessed the season’s first major fight between the former comrades Sasuke and Naruto. Determined to cut all ties from Konoha and his team, Sasuke takes the battle into his hands and activates his curse mark to its full extent. On the other hand, Naruto was hell-bent on bringing Sasuke back home, so he also taps into his powers deep down and unleashes the powers of the Nine-tailed fox, Kurama.
If you are yet to reach this episode, I will not disclose the winner of this match but let me tell you that even a near-death experience wasn’t enough to shake Naruto’s belief in Sasuke and his determination to save his best friend.
Episode – 134
IMDb Rating – 8.9
Best Episodes Of Naruto Shippuden | IMDb Rating Says It All!
The reason for the franchise’s popularity wasn’t only the OG Naruto series. A big part of the huge fan following is the successor series Naruto Shippuden as well. Following the journey of the young ninjas turning into great shinobis and the five great nations on the brink of war, Shippuden became worth watching. While it may be fun for some people to rewatch the entire series, others have a job and no time to revisit the entire good old days.
So, what do they do? Well, if not the entire series, they can catch up with the best episodes of Naruto Shippuden.
#1 Puppet Fight: 10 vs 100 | 十機vs百機
Sakura may have been a cry baby during the early days of Naruto, but a lot has changed since her dear Sasuke Kun left the village. Determined to prove her worth and bring Sasuke back, Sakura started training under the Fifth Hokage, Tsunade. During the two years between Naruto and Naruto Shippuden, Sakura trained harder every day to become an efficient team member.
During her and granny Chiyo’s fight with Akatsuki member Sasori, Sakura surprised the fans with her monster strength and skills. Lady Chiyo may have killed Sasori at the end, but it was Sakura who made that happen. From this point onwards, viewers took Sakura’s character a little more seriously and started praising her.
Episode – 26
IMDb Rating – 8.7
#2 The Tale Of Jiraiya The Gallant | 自来也豪傑物語
The Tale of Jiraiya The Gallant (2009) may be one of the best episodes of Naruto Shippuden, but it also became one that made millions of anime fans cry. There is no wonder this particular episode ends up in the top ten of the series as it puts an end to one of the most beloved characters on the series. The episode revolved around the intense fight between Jiraiya, the legendary Sannin, and the six paths of pain.
Throughout the nail-biting match, viewers were sure Jiraiya would win, but alas, things don’t always go as planned. In the end, Jiraiya made sure his death could benefit Naruto and Konoha in the war.
Episode – 133
IMDb Rating – 9.3
#3 The End | 終焉
The episode may be titled The End (2009), but it brought new beginnings for Sasuke, the last Uchiha. Sasuke kept hating everyone all his life and trained to avenge his clan’s death by killing his elder brother, Itachi. There were many instances where the two brothers came face to face but never ended in a battle until this episode. Spoilers Ahead!!!!
When Itachi knew his time was near, he indulged Sasuke in a fight, and the young Uchiha did not fail to keep his end of the bargain. Sasuke managed to kill Itachi but only because of the latter’s chakra depletion. Itachi’s iconic forehead poke to Sasuke gave a fitting end to his story.
Episode – 138
IMDb Rating – 9.1
#4 Planetary Devastation | 地爆天星
For many Planetary Devastation (2010) was the episode where Naruto loses control over nine-tails but for hopeless romantics like me, it was the confession of his undying love for Hinata. Everything was going well, but when Naruto thought Pain killed Hinata, he went mad and allowed Kurama to take over his body. As the battle kept going, Kurama kept overtaking tail by tail until he was in full control.
No other Shinobi dared to interfere until Pain used his Rinnegan technique, Chibaku Tensei, to trap Naruto. However, Pain’s most powerful Jutsu wasn’t able to hold an angry Uzumkai for a long time and the episode ended on a worthy cliffhanger.
Episode – 167
IMDb Rating – 9.2
#5 The Fourth Hokage | 四代目火影
This particular episode of the series acted as a massive eye-opener not only for the fans but also for our hero Naruto. While nine-tails took over Naruto’s body to fight Pain, the Uzumaki prodigy met a part of Fourth Hokage’s mind left with Kurama’s seal. The episode created a bridge for Naruto to know about his real identity, meet his father and know the truth behind Kurama’s role in the great ninja war.
The biggest help that came from the trip down memory lane was finding the real Pain and ending the battle as soon as possible.
Episode – 168
IMDb Rating – 9.1
#6 Thank You |「ありがとう」
All his life, Naruto felt left out and craved for his family. As much as he wanted to know about his family, he never found a way to get to the truth. This episode, however, gave Naruto a chance to meet his mother, Kushina, because of the chakra left inside him.
Kushina explained to Naruto what happened during the war and how Tobi manipulated Kurama to fight against Konohagakure. Kushina also explained how she and his father sacrificed their life to save Naruto and seal the nine-tailed fox within him.
Episode – 249
IMDb Rating – 9.1
#7 The Ties That Bind | 繋がれるもの
Being a great Shonen classic, viewers would have never thought that Naruto Shippuden can make people cry. It turns out that the series can make people cry more than epic love stories. The Ties That Bind (2014) was another episode that gave viewers every reason to cry their hearts out. When Shikaku (Shikamaru’s father) and Inoichi (Ino’s father) were not able to divert an incoming attack, they reached out to their kids using Inoichi’s mental powers to say their final goodbye.
The final moment wasn’t an easy one to watch because especially after Asuma’s death. Another beloved character who departed this episode was Neji Hyuga, who sacrificed his life while saving Hinata.
Episode – 364
IMDb Rating – 9.2
#8 The Sage Of The Six Paths | 六道仙人
It is a dream for a shinobi to meet a legendary character like Hagoromo Otsutsuki. While it may not have been possible for Naruto and Sasuke to meet the legend otherwise, their temporary death happened. The great Hagoromo Otsutsuki revealed important details about his mother Kaguya to the shinobi allies and that the two had the reincarnated chakra of his sons.
To help them reach their potential and unlock the sage of six paths power, Hagoromo even shared his power with them.
Episode – 421
IMDb Rating – 9.3
#9 The Final Battle | 最後の戦い
Naruto Shippuden did not just end after the Fourth Shinobi World War. The war may have ended with Madara and Kaguya’s defeat, but one more battle was left to fight. The final battle between shinobi-turned-enemies-turned-allies Naruto and Sasuke. For years, Naruto considered Sasuke to be his friend while the latter grew up with a rage to kill the former.
A few episodes from this point onwards gave closure to Sasuke and Naruto’s journey with an intense battle. Though the battle continued for days, it ended with a smile for both of them.
Episode – 476
IMDb Rating – 9.3
It seems impossible to choose a few favorite episodes from such an interesting anime series, but as they say, it is what it is. We get little to no time to entertain ourselves with a rewatch binge session with such a busy lifestyle. During such days, catching up with the best Naruto and Naruto Shippuden episodes turns out to be our only option available.