All The Filler Episodes In The Anime


  • Naruto’s pre-timeskip era showcased the joy of growing up as a ninja, before a dark turn took the show in a different direction.
  • Fillers became a common occurrence as the show caught up to the manga, with unnecessary storylines padding out the original content.
  • Some filler episodes are worth watching, but the bulk of them are skippable and don’t contribute to the main storyline.

Naruto is a legendary anime that needs no introduction. The series as a whole has seen its fair share of ups and downs, but there’s no denying the fact that pre-timeskip Naruto was a joy to behold in its own right. The show’s lighthearted nature betrayed the dark turn it would take later down the line and kept fans hooked on the show as they grew up along with Naruto and his friends.

There’s a reason why so many people hold Naruto in high regard, with this anime being the pinnacle of storytelling… barring the last war arc. However, the original Naruto anime was focused solely on the lives of the protagonists as children before they became teenagers and attained a boost in power that was simply incredible.


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Of course, given Naruto‘s serialized nature, it was only a matter of time before the show would rely on filler to give Kishimoto some breathing room as he penned the chapters of this manga. The last few episodes of this run before the show bridged over to Shippuden are especially guilty of bombarding fans with unwanted filler. Viewers who want to take an in-depth look at the various fillers of Naruto should check this table out.

Updated on April 6, 2024, by Ritwik Mitra: Naruto is one of the greatest shows of all time, encapsulating an entire generation by letting them enjoy the ninja world to their heart’s content as they get immersed in Kishimoto’s rich storytelling. As is the case with any serialized anime, the show caught up to the manga so many times that the original run of Naruto is absolutely padded with filler. This gets downright egregious in later seasons with the bulk of the content being nothing but meaningless filler with few canon scenes interspersed here and there. Sure, some of the filler content is worth a gander, but that’s few and far between.

Naruto Statistics Chart

Filler Content


A Recap Of The Show Till Now


Trying To Take Tsunade’s Debt


Trying To Uncover Kakashi’s Face


The Land Of Tea Escort Mission


Land Of Rice Fields Investigation Mission


Mizuki Tracking Mission


Bikochu Search Mission


Kurosuki Family Removal Mission


Gosunkugi Capture Mission

159, 160

Cursed Warrior Extermination Mission


Kaima Capture Mission


Daimyo Heir Escort Mission


Buried Gold Excavation Mission

175, 176

Stopping The Courier Ninja


Star Guard Mission


Various One-Off Episodes


Peddlers Escort Mission


Third Great Beast Arc

195, 196

Konoha Plans Recapture Mission


The Best Battles During The Sasuke Recovery Mission


Yakumo Kurama Rescue Mission


Prized Artifact Escort Mission


Gantetsu Escort Mission


Menma Memory Search Mission


Sunagakure Support Mission


5 Season 1

Filler Episode(s): 26

Naruto Uzumaki Kiba Inuzuka Chunin Exams

  • Notable Filler Episode(s): Special Report: Live from the Forest of Death!

Naruto starts off on a relatively simple note, showing the life of the orphan Naruto as he creates a ton of trouble to draw attention to himself. Given his status as a Jinchuuriki, the entire village vilifies this poor child and forces him into a corner. Thankfully, Naruto doesn’t let this bring him down and manages to become a ninja through sheer hard work and determination.


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After embarking on his first proper mission, he also takes part in the Chunin exams. This is considered by many to be one of Naruto’s best and most important arcs that helped the series attain the massive fan following it enjoys to this day. The fact that some of the arc’s best moments come before the final battles begin shows just how high-quality this saga really is.

The solitary piece of filler in this season comes in the form of a clever recap episode before the second test in the Forest of Death, where a sneaky Konohamaru interviews Naruto and gets some information from Sasuke as well.

4 Season 2

Filler Episode(s): 97

Tsunade Using Her Secret Technique

  • Notable Filler Episode(s): Kidnapped! Naruto’s Hot Spring Adventure!

The second season of Naruto is where things truly escalate. The final part of the Chunin exams turns out to be nothing more than a farce, with Orochimaru using this distraction to wreak havoc upon the Leaf Village and battle against his former sensei. It’s easily one of the most awe-inspiring fights in the series up till that point, so it’s a shame that the battle ends in the death of the Third Hokage while Orochimaru somehow manages to escape.

This leads to a void in the Leaf Village hierarchy, leading to Jiraiya and Naruto embarking on an adventure as they strive to bring back the third member of the legendary Sannin to become the Fifth Hokage of the Leaf Village. It’s a great arc, with the solitary filler episode coming in the form of a rather hilarious moment where two unfortunate ninja are tasked with taking back Tsunade’s debt… only to find out that this debt had been paid back a long while ago.

While the first two seasons barely had any filler, the slow creep of this original content started in the third season. Of course, this was just a tester course that hid just what viewers would have to suffer through.

3 Season 3

Filler Episode(s): 101-106, 136-141

Sasuke Uchiha Curse Seal Power

  • Notable Filler Episode(s): Gotta See! Gotta Know! Kakashi-Sensei’s True Face!, Mission: Help an Old Friend in the Land of Tea, Deep Cover!? A Super S-Ranked Mission!

The third season is where the pre-timeskip portion of Naruto essentially ends… in the canon storyline, that is. The season starts off with a rather hilarious filler episode where the members of Team 7 try to unmask Kakashi to find out what he actually looks like. Most people consider this to be one of the best filler episodes in the series, so much so that Shippuden featured an episode going back to this concept that ended with Kakashi’s actual face reveal.

This is followed up by an escort mission in the Land of Tea that is fairly uneventful. However, the anime uses the ending of this arc as motivation for Sasuke to fight Naruto and find out who’s more powerful, which is a rather unique way to integrate filler into the canon storyline. After finding out that he hasn’t made enough progress as a shinobi, Sasuke accepts Orochimaru’s offer to gain more power. This leads to the village of Konoha forming a squad that would work together to retrieve Sasuke.


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This mission fails, setting up the events for Naruto to travel around the world with Jiraiya and learn some neat tricks in the process. The season ends with another filler arc, which most people thought would be the end of that. Oh, how wrong they were…

2 Season 4

Filler Episode(s): 142-183

naruto thumbs up feature

  • Notable Filler Episode(s): A New Formation: Ino-Shika-Cho!, Blaze Away Byakugan: This Is My Ninja Way, Hidden Jutsu: The Price of The Ninja Art: Kujaku

Season 4 is easily the worst that Naruto has ever been, with all the episodes being total filler. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that most people would lose interest during these moments due to the high volume of nonsensical plots and inconsequential moments. It’s around this moment that most casual viewers become aware of the fact that all these stories don’t matter at all, making them rue their decision and jump over to Naruto: Shippuden at a moment’s notice.

The worst part is that there are a few canon moments present in some episodes, meaning that viewers who decide to skip all of this filler might miss out on some crucial plot development as well! This mandates the need to find an in-depth guide that lets viewers know exactly what they need to see, which can get pretty cumbersome. It’s so bad that Naruto actually has a fan-made shortened version that many people recommend over the original.

1 Season 5

Filler Episode(s): 184-219

Jiraiya Naruto Shippuden

  • Notable Filler Episode(s): The Targeted Shukaku, The Ultimate Weapon Reborn

Season 5 is just as bad as Season 4, if not worse. The final season of Naruto is full to the brim with annoying filler, barring the last episode. It’s a mind-numbing watch that only the most devout fans of Naruto would even bother checking out. While the final moments of most battles are still pretty cool, these relentless filler arcs don’t play any role in the later canon stories of Naruto and aren’t really all that high-quality either.

Even in the series finale, viewers who decide to skip to the end will either have to bear with or skip through the ending of the final filler arc in Naruto. It’s a torrid way to end what is otherwise a great show… although the arrival of Naruto Shippuden does make things fresher and more invigorating. That being said, it’s easy to see why many people feel like Naruto’s reputation has been permanently tarnished because of the needless amount of filler in the show, but new viewers have the luxury of skipping all these episodes and getting to the good stuff.



Release Date
October 2, 2002


Masashi Kishimoto