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Fans Are Still Floored At One Of Naruto's Most Baffling Filler Episodes

"Naruto" is regarded by many fans as one of the best Shonen anime for numerous reasons. From its impressive choreographed fight scenes to the captivating designs of its cast, the series from creator Masashi Kishimoto had so much going for it. In addition, the anime could also add longevity to its staggering list of feats. We're talking about a series that contained 720 episodes in total when counting both the "Naruto" and "Shippuden" anime. Over 200 of those episodes came from "Naruto" alone. But when looking back at all the first anime's episodes, we're quick to remember that a good chunk of it was filler.

Anime filler is expected for a top-rated series, as depending on the timing, it gives authors some time to keep the central plot moving in the manga. Besides, anime-only stories can be an excellent opportunity to enhance a show. This seemed to be the case with Episode 147, "A Clash of Fate: You Can't Bring Me Down!" The entry's ability to pull from the anime's debut through Naruto, Iruka, and antagonist Mizuki helps it come off as a pretty important "Naruto" filler episode in the long run. However, that doesn't mean fans thought of it as a perfect episode, as some elements still made this filler also one of the series' most baffling.

Episode 147 feels too much like a bad dream for fans

"A Clash of Fate: You Can't Bring Me Down!" depicts a few fantastic moments of Iruka and Naruto's relationship as teacher and student. It's also got a neat team-up with the two that ends with Naruto's iconic Rasengan move. But one crucial detail that continues to floor fans about the episode has to do with returning villain Mizuki. "Anybody else remember the time Orochimaru tricked that guy from the first episode into drinking furry juice?" u/Auraveils posted on the Naruto subreddit. "Or was that a fever dream?" The "juice" in question in the episode is a potion whose ingredients Mizuki learned about from Orochimaru.

It later turns him into a tiger-beast monster that honestly wouldn't feel out of place in "Digimon." But that, of course, makes the character feel out of place in "Naruto" for some fans. Many responded to Mizuki's strange transformation, mostly with jokes. For instance, u/Reddit-gamer1 wrote, "Is this the episode where Naruto fights Mizuki for Orochimaru's Frosted Flakes?" However, some took the opportunity to express their dislike of the episode, as Mizuki's change made it all feel both pointless and ridiculous. "I remember this being the final filler episode I watched before saying, 'f*** this, I'm starting Shippuden,'" u/Graveytrain_ posted.

The episode did give more of a spotlight on Mizuki

Despite Mizuki's change from prison inmate to an anime Tony the Tiger ripoff, Episode 147 does give the character a chance to return. And that's more of an opportunity he gets compared to the manga. As some fans on the Reddit post noted, Mizuki appeared in the first episode and manga chapters of "Naruto." He's the bad guy who sports a giant shuriken and convinces Naruto to steal the scroll that gives our hero his Shadow Clone Jutsu. However, that's his only appearance in the manga. Thanks to the anime filler, he gets his own arc, aptly titled "Mizuki Tracking Mission."

His moment to shine again gave fans additional reasons to boo him as a villain when more of his origin was revealed. "Mizuki was a real PoS," u/Rude-Listen wrote. "Like, he was checking a 'body' of a fellow teammate on a mission. Turns out he was covering his mouth to keep him from making a sound so he could just kill him for some reason." Even with the opportunity of a comeback, some fans, like u/Fearless_Hold7611, felt that ultimately, "Naruto" failed to stick the landing. They posted, "The concept of bringing back Mizuki was amazing, but they built up a subplot of Orochimaru corrupting him, just to reveal he was a psycho since he was a child, and became a furry; easily one of the worst fillers in the franchise." In the end, maybe it's best if Mizuki is remembered for only his earlier appearance in the series.