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Naruto: Every Relationship Ranked (& How Long They Lasted)

Naruto is an anime focused on the shinobi lifestyle, but romance isn't forgotten about. We rank all the couples and examine their longevity.

With its focus on adventure and the shinobi lifestyle, the Naruto franchise doesn’t have a lot of time for romance. However, over the decades the franchise has been around, quite a few relationships became big parts of the story and shaped the way some of the characters encountered the world.

RELATED: 10 Tattoos Only Naruto Fans Will Understand

Many of the relationships formed during the early days of Naruto have lasted well into the Boruto sequel series as well. Those that did are still going strong. Those that didn’t? They were torn apart by tragedy. And in some rare cases, the pairing in question never should have ended up together in the first place. Here is Naruto: Every Relationship Ranked (And How Long They Lasted).

10 Sasuke And Karin (Unknown)

Whether or not these two students of Orochimaru were every really a romantic pairing is up to interpretation. It’s clear that Karin harbored a bit of an obsession with Sasuke, but Sasuke didn’t seem to have more than a sense of camaraderie with Karin. 

Karin’s feelings for Sasuke were so strong that she allowed him to bite her to have access to her healing abilities — something she refused to allow anyone else to do. Sasuke simply used Karin’s expertise to help him on missions. If any relationship was the worst in the Naruto franchise, it was this one.

9 Fugaku And Mikoto (At Least 14 Years)

Itachi Fugaku and Mikoto in Naruto Shippuuden

The Uchiha clan didn’t seem to be all that lucky in love. While Fugaku and Mikoto seemed to be a loving couple, fans didn’t get to spend a whole lot of time with them to find out. Instead, the duo fell to their oldest son’s plan for a massacre.

They rank above Sasuke and Karin because, at the very least, these two were united until their 13-year-old son became embroiled in an assassination plot. Knowing death was coming for them right before Itachi did, they stayed side by side and embraced their ends together.

8 Sasuke And Sakura (On And Off For 13 Years)

Yes, Sasuke and Sakura are a fan favorite couple, there’s no denying that. Sakura, especially as an adult, has a love for Sasuke that softens his harsh lifestyle. During most of the Naruto franchise, however, that love was all one-sided.

RELATED: Naruto: 10 Questions About Sakura, Answered

Sasuke consistently treated Sakura horribly while they were growing up, and she still had faith in him. Once they finally got together, he left her all over again to atone for his past actions. It’s clear that they care deeply for one another in the Boruto series, but they aren’t the best at showing it. The breaks from their relationship seem to work for them as they’ve come back to one another repeatedly and united in parenting Sarada.

7 Dan And Tsunade (Unknown)

Just how long Dan and Tsunade were together is never made clear in the series. What is clear is that Dan was the love of Tsunade’s life. She was ready to marry him, but they fell in love during a time of war.

Unfortunately, their relationship was cut short when Dan died in the line of duty. Tsunade was so traumatized by the loss and being unable to save him that she seemingly never pursued another relationship. Instead, she maintained an antagonistic friendship with Jiraiya for the rest of her life that she never allowed to blossom into more.

6 Shikaku And Yoshino (At Least 17 Years)

Yoshino And Shikamaru Nara With Shikaku Edit

Better known as the parents of Shikamaru Nara, they didn’t get a ton of attention as a couple. But what little fans saw of them together made it clear that they complemented one another.

Though like his son, Shikaku was incredibly strong-willed outside of the home and in his line of work, he set his stubborn streak aside for his wife. Yoshino ran her home like a tight ship and Shikaku deferred to her. Outside of that, fans don’t know much of the ins and outs of their relationship. If they did, the couple might have been ranked higher. They were together until Shikaku was killed in the Fourth Shinobi World War.

5 Sai And Ino (14 Years)

For some fans, Sai seemed like Ino’s consolation prize. As a child, she wanted Sasuke, but did she settle for Sai? Not exactly.

Ino, prone to emotional outbursts and a need to be the center of attention, found her other half in Sai. Sai had to work to understand emotion, and his blunt honesty proved he found Ino more appealing than the rest of his friends. She taught him about emotion and he helped to temper her ego. Over 14 years, they got together, wed, and raised their own young shinobi. They’re still going strong in the Boruto series. 

4 Shikamaru And Temari (At Least 14 Years)

Shikamaru And Temari In Shikamaru Hiden

It might be surprising for some fans to see this couple ranked so high since they haven’t been shown in the best light in the Boruto series. 

RELATED: Naruto: 10 Questions About Temari, Answered

Shikamaru and Temari were one of the earliest couples fans could see developing in the franchise. While other teens in the Naruto series had crushes on one another that didn’t look to be reciprocated, these two developed a friendship, and later a relationship, built on respect for one another’s intelligence and skills.

They first ended up on one another’s radar when facing off during the Chūnin Exams. Over the next few years, they took turns saving one another’s lives, worked together to train aspiring shinobi, and denied they were dating to anyone who asked. A few misunderstandings later, they ended up married and raising a son. Temari might be treated like just another angry female caricature in Boruto, but she and Shikamaru are still completely devoted to one another.

3 Asuma And Kurenai (Unknown)

It’s not clear when Asuma and Kurenai went from shinobi colleagues to a couple. They worked alongside one another as sensei for Chūnin shinobi for years. Nobody knew they were officially together until Asuma’s life was on the line.

Fans got to see hints of their relationship as the two were often spotted in the background together in the anime. Likewise, Asuma’s students teased them about their potential relationship on more than one occasion. Asuma had a quiet devotion to Kurenai, committed to protecting her and their unborn child so that the next generation could live on. If he had lived, they likely would have been raising their daughter together in the Boruto series.

2 Naruto And Hinata (14 Years)

Naruto kissing Hinata

When they were children, Naruto didn’t entirely understand romantic love. Crushes and competing for affection, yes. But not love. He didn’t see Hinata’s faith in him and adoration for his character as her being in love with him until it was almost too late. The events of The Last: Naruto The Movie opened his eyes.

Once the two of them were open about their feelings, they seemed to find a near perfect balance in their relationship. Naruto matured greatly, no longer prone to explosive outbursts. Hinata opened up more, no longer hiding in the background. They were good for one another, even if, as an adult, his job as Hokage frequently meant they don’t get as much time together. 

1 Minato And Kushina (Unknown)

Kushina and Minato in Naruto

Naruto’s parents are the kind of couple legends are made of. Minato and Kushina met as children and became friends. As adults, they fell in love and married, though it’s not clear how much time they had together before the nine-tailed fox was unleashed on their village.

Kushina was a fierce warrior in her own right and Minato trusted her judgment. Though he became the Hokage, Kushina was entrusted to house the spirit of the nine-tailed fox at his side. They fought for one another — and their village — right up until the end. Minato and Kushina sacrificed themselves so that their son could grow up, and even in death, their chakra showed their love for one another when Naruto encountered what was left of them. 

NEXT: Boruto: 5 Characters Who Could Achieve Kage Level Power (& 5 Who Won’t)

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