When two characters have had a connection ever since they were children, it seems like a fairy tale when they end up together as a couple in the end of a story’s narrative. In the Naruto franchise, however, Naruto Uzumaki and Hinata Hyuga don’t exactly have the kind of relationship fans would find in a fairy tale.
It takes a long time for the two of them to find themselves on the same page. Being on different pages also means that there are quite a few times the two of them actually put each other in danger, though not on purpose. While they really do suit one another well, there’s also no arguing that there are many bad aspects to their relationship as they grow up and figure things out.
10 Hinata Spends Most Of Her Childhood Unable To Talk To Naruto
Hinata is a very shy and gentle child. She doesn’t like being the center of attention and finds it difficult to get her point across. Those traits are exacerbated by her crush on Naruto as a kid.
This means that any time Naruto tries to have a conversation with her, she usually stammers, turns red, and in extreme instances, faints. Being around Naruto, no matter how much she wants to, is just too much for her. That eventually changes as the two become friends, but her reactions prevent her from having an actual conversation with Naruto for years.
9 Hinata Endures A Lot of Teasing Because Of Her Feelings
Hinata isn’t one of the characters often spotlighted early on in the series. Her reactions to Naruto don’t go unnoticed by her peers, though. While Sakura feels for her, and even eventually encourages Hinata to tell Naruto how she feels, others aren’t so friendly.
Her teammate Kiba alternates between making light of Hinata’s infatuation and admonishing her for her fainting spells. He’s also pretty hostile to Naruto in early missions they share. Some fans theorized that was a result of jealousy, but it’s never addressed, and Kiba continues to tease Hinata long into the series without taking how it makes her feel into account.
8 Naruto Spends Their Formative Years Oblivious To Her Feelings
Naruto isn’t the most observant ninja in Konoha. With his rivalry with Sasuke and his own crush on Sakura consuming him during the first half of the series, it’s no wonder he’s oblivious to Hinata’s feelings. She’s not part of his tight-knit team, so he doesn’t take much notice of her unless he has to work with her.
Even then, he doesn’t realize that her speechlessness and her fainting are direct results of interacting with him. When everyone else around them can easily see Hinata’s feelings, it makes the audience wonder just how bad Naruto’s observation skills must be in the field and how they ever ended up as a couple at all.
7 Hinata’s Obsession With Naruto Means She Doesn’t Foster Many Other Relationships
To be fair, few members of the Konoha 11 form meaningful relationships outside of their ninja teams. They’re all so focused on the looming war that there isn’t much time for them to befriend others or pursue romance. There are exceptions, like Naruto and Gaara becoming friends, or Shikamaru and Temari pursuing a relationship, but both of those are the result of initial conflict between the pairings.
Hinata places her focus squarely on admiring Naruto and lifting up her team. There’s nothing else for her. She doesn’t even become good friends with Sakura until after the Fourth Shinobi World War.
6 Naruto Encourages Hinata’s Contentious Match With Neji
The Chunin Exams are already a point of contention amongst Naruto fans. There’s a lot about the process that doesn’t make a lot of sense. The one-on-one matches, for example, tend to be very unevenly matched, like pitting Hinata against her cousin Neji.
Despite knowing that Neji is the top-ranked genin, Naruto has no problem being the one person in the venue encouraging Hinata not to back down. Hinata refuses to look like a quitter with Naruto finally paying attention to her, and it nearly costs her her life since Neji blocks her flow of chakra and continues to land blows against her. If not for the interference of their teachers, Neji would have killed her — all because Hinata refused to let Naruto down.
5 Hinata Getting Hurt Means Naruto Loses Control
Despite Naruto not even realizing how deeply he cares about Hinata, he’s willing to completely destroy Konoha in her name. When Hinata stands up to Pain on his behalf, Naruto believes her killed by their enemy. The anger he feels in that moment proves that Naruto really does love her, but it also gives Kurama an opening. While it’s admirable that Naruto wants to get justice for Hinata, the way he goes about it is dangerous and destructive.
4 Naruto Doesn’t Recognize Hinata When Calling Her Beautiful
There are a few filler arcs in the anime that see Naruto and Hinata on the same teams for missions. On one of them, Hinata sneaks away from her team in the middle of the night to practice a jutsu she’s been developing on her own. Since she practices in the middle of a waterfall, she does it unclothed to keep her clothing dry.
Naruto happens to spot her when he gets up in the middle of the night, but doesn’t recognize her. He even mentions the next day that the person he saw was beautiful. That might boost Hinata’s ego a little bit, but considering the two have been in the same classes at the Ninja Academy for years, shouldn’t Naruto be able to recognize Hinata by now?
3 It Takes Hinata Almost Marrying A Villain For Naruto To Understand His Feelings
Hinata flat out says that she loves Naruto a few times in the anime, most notably while defending him from Pain. It still takes Naruto a whole mission to save her sister for him to figure out just what that means.
That mission is the focus of The Last: Naruto The Movie. It’s not until Naruto is faced with the possibility of Hinata marrying Toneri in her sister’s place that he recognizes his own feelings for Hinata. Just as he’s about to lose her, he’s finally willing to admit he loves her, which seems a little ridiculous considering all they’ve been through together before this.
2 It Takes A Separate Movie For The Audience To See The Characters Bond
Setting aside Naruto’s dramatic revelation that he does, in fact, love Hinata, there’s also the issue that they don’t bond much in the anime outside of life or death situations. While The Last does feature a mission concerning the end of the world, it’s also the first time Naruto and Hinata really get to spend time together off the battlefield — at least, that the audience is privy to.
They’ve known each other as classmates and allies for a decade, and it’s just then that Naruto and Hinata find themselves alone, separated from their teammates and able to have normal conversations. It shouldn’t have taken so long for them to talk about something other than their shinobi techniques.
1 Naruto Is A Mostly Absent Father After Becoming Hokage
It’s very clear by the time the Boruto movie (and series) comes along that Naruto and Hinata care for one another deeply. Unfortunately, Naruto isn’t exactly the best husband or father.
Boruto begins over a decade into their marriage, and Naruto is mostly absent. To be fair, he is the Hokage. For someone who grew up without a family to support him, though, Naruto spends a lot of time absent from his wife and kids. It takes his son getting into serious trouble and the village being put in danger again for him to realize he needs to be a better dad and a better partner to Hinata.