Naruto Shippuden Episode 248: The Fourth Hokage’s Death Match and Episode 249: Thank You will give you an unprecedented look into the pivotal events surrounding Naruto’s birth. Events that are briefly shown in the manga are fleshed out and Naruto's early life is fully explained.
The Fourth Hokage’s Death Match takes you right into the delivery room for Naruto's birth. But what should be a joyous occasion turns dire when Madara kidnaps Naruto’s mother and releases the Nine Tails. As a fan, seeing the very events that shape the entire series play out before your eyes is a powerful experience, especially seeing the Fourth Hokage in action. Oh, and for all you Sasuke fans, there’s a special scene in this episode you’ll definitely enjoy.
Thank You focuses on the destruction of the Village Hidden in the Leaves. It makes it easier to understand why Naruto was treated so coldly in the beginning, after seeing the human toll inflicted on the villagers by the Nine Tails' attack. Artistically speaking, the destruction scene is amazing. The art style actually changes for a segment and is reminiscent of ancient woodblock prints. To top it all off, the scene where Naruto’s parents are sealing the Nine Tails and are saying their goodbyes to him is downright heart wrenching.
Watching these episodes feels like being transported back in time and seeing history happen right before your eyes. There are so many more details given here than are ever shown in the manga. For die-hard fans, this will hit you hard (don't be afraid to cry manly tears like I did!) and reaffirm what you love about this anime. For non-fans, this will show you why this series took the world by storm. Either way, don’t miss these two legendary episodes!