Sasuke and Sakura have one of the most publicized will-they/won’t-they relationships in the anime world. Their fans refer to their relationship as SasuSaku, and their relationship was played out through the Naruto series.
However, we never get to see Sasuke and Sakura kiss in the Naruto anime or manga. A lot of this has to do with the slow development of their relationship, as well as Sasuke’s personality. There are, however, allusions that they have kissed off-screen.
Of course, to leave it at that is to do a disservice to one of the greatest ships in one of the greatest anime franchises. After all, they were recorded kissing in a canon novel. If that makes you curious, read on to find out more!
Do Sasuke and Sakura Kiss in the Anime?
The Naruto franchise has branched out and now encompasses several titles. And so we will consider the kisses (if any) and close calls of Sasuke and Sakura in the following shows:
- Naruto Anime Series
- Naruto: Shippuden Anime Series
- Naruto Movies
- Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Naruto Anime Series
Sasuke and Sakura never kiss in the anime. In fact, for the most part, this series involved Sakura pining over Sasuke while he rejected her.
However, it is implied that he becomes more used to her presence as time passed by. Because they weren’t really close then, this never manifested with a kiss.
They did, however, share one hug, wherein Sasuke didn’t reject Sakura’s advances and affection. This happened during the Search for Tsunade Arc. At the time, Sasuke remained unconscious in the hospital after Itachi had tortured him.
Hence, when he was finally awoken by Tsunade, he was greeted by a very relieved and tearful Sakura. She hugged him, and for once, he simply allowed her.
There is one scene wherein “Sasuke” and Sakura almost kissed at the beginning of the series. It happened just after Team 7 was formed. Sakura was daydreaming about Sasuke, and then she caught him staring at her.
They decided to sit on a bench together, and there, Sakura confessed that all she ever wanted was to be noticed and acknowledged by Sasuke. Afterwards, she leaned in for a kiss, but “Sasuke” suddenly had a stomachache and so he quickly ran off.
It was later revealed that this “Sasuke” was actually Naruto.
Fun fact: Naruto had a huge crush on Sakura, even when he knew that she liked Sasuke!
Naruto: Shipudden Anime Series
The relationship between Sasuke and Sakura continued to progress through the Naruto: Shippuden anime. Initially, they hit roadblocks as Sasuke seemed to be uninterested in maintaining ties with anyone. In fact, he even tried to kill his previous team!
However, several instances thereafter reflected that Sakura carried a special place in Sasuke’s heart. There were moments when he would pay attention to her more than the rest of their peers.
Nonetheless, it would appear that for the most part, this was Sasuke only caring for Sakura as a friend and a comrade.
It was only near the end of the series that he started showing romantic interest in her. Here’s a video of one such instance:
Although it may not seem like much at first glance, viewers who know Sasuke would attest that this glance and the arm wrapped around the shoulder already speaks volumes.
If this is already considered development, it should be unsurprising that there was no kiss between the two in Naruto: Shippuden.
True to form, the numerous Naruto movies did not show any kissing scene between Sasuke and Sakura. Most of them simply showed Sakura pining over Sasuke.
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Boruto covers the events after the end of the Naruto series. The titular character is the son of Naruto and Hinata. There are then moments wherein Sasuke and Sakura are also included in the storyline.
In Boruto, Sasuke and Sakura have a child named Sarada together. However, Sasuke is away a lot, and he is coined as an absent father. This narrative continues to reflect his difficulty with emotions.
Nonetheless, it would be faulty to say that he has never kissed Sakura because that’s just not possible if they have a kid.
The only clincher is that they’re not shown kissing onscreen. And so at this point, years into the storyline, viewers still haven’t seen Sasuke and Sakura kiss.
Do Sasuke and Sakura Kiss in the Manga?
Several manga have been released to cover the story of Naruto and his friends. Thus, we have the main story along with several spin-offs.
Now, one would think that at least one of these would explore the blossoming romance between Sasuke and Sakura. Unfortunately, this is not the case. In no Naruto manga can we see Sasuke and Sakura flirting, much less kissing.
- Did you know? Many fans consider Sakura useless. We explain why here!
Do Sasuke and Sakura Kiss in the Novels?
At this point, you may feel as if all hope is lost and that as a fan, you will never, ever encounter Sasuke and Sakura kissing. However, we have just one more medium to look at before throwing the towel: the Naruto novels.
There are novel adaptations and novel spin-offs that are counted as canon. While the illustrations and drawings are far less than one would encounter in the anime or manga, the words are enough to help us form images in our heads.
The Naruto franchise currently has 29 novels. Though they are published by different authors, Masashi Kishimoto illustrated all the Naruto novels while Mikio Ikemoto did the illustrations for the Boruto novels. All of these are considered canon.
Perhaps, it is through these mental images are the closest that we can come to seeing Sasuke and Sakura kissing. This is because, in Naruto Ratsuden, we finally have a narrative of Sasuke and Sakura kissing. This happens in chapter 5, page 262 of the novel.
The story goes this way: Naruto had just been inflicted with a rare disease, so Sasuke and Sakura were trying to gather some resources.
The mission was not turning out as they hoped, so Naruto was feeling dizzy and confused as the three of them rode a motorcycle together. They were arranged like this:
Then he got even more confused because suddenly, Sakura released her grip from the motorcycle handles and stood up.
She turned her entire upper body, grabbed Sasuke by the collar, and kissed him on the lips. It is said that this was a kiss for luck and courage, as they managed to accomplish their mission thereafter.
Given their arrangement, this kiss happened on top of Naruto’s head. Now that’s an image fans would have loved to see.
Unfortunately, there is little to no chance that this would be adapted into a manga or an anime. With that, fans have to settle for their imagination, perhaps with a little help from fan art.
If you are interested to read the entire scene on your own, you would have to grab a copy of the Naruto Restuden novel. Luckily for you, Viz Media has announced that its English translation and publication is underway.
What Keeps Sasuke and Sakura from Kissing?
If you’ve been a fan of Naruto for a while now, you may be wondering why Sasuke and Sakura had no kissing scene in the anime or the manga. For that, we need to look at three reasons:
- Sasuke’s personality
- The slow development of their relationship
- Their forehead tap
Sasuke’s personality keeps him from kissing Sakura
From the very beginning, Sasuke has been portrayed as someone who is very restrained when it comes to expressing positive thoughts and feelings. Because of psychological reasons, he expresses his emotions best through anger, annoyance, and frustration.
Beyond this, he is someone who tends to keep his personal life close to his chest. However, this does not mean that he is insensitive or that he is incapable of feeling.
In fact, as an Uchicha, it is highly possible that he experiences emotions more intensely. It’s just that he channels them differently.
Through the series, we get to watch Sasuke’s personality develop. After his fight with Naruto, he started trusting people more, and he allowed himself to bond with others. He slowly leaves his past behind as he opens up his heart.
Nonetheless, it is important to remember that this change does not mean he is any less careful in displaying emotions — especially when these are emotions that he is still navigating and unfamiliar with.
This means that he won’t kiss her as freely as other wish he would.
Here’s a good video that explores Sasuke’s trauma, psychology, and how they impact his relationships:
The slow development of Sasuke and Sakura’s relationship keeps them from kissing
Because fans have been watching their relationship unfold through many years, it may feel as if Sasuke and Sakura have been in a relationship for a long time. But the truth is that the majority of that time, it was just Sakura pining over Sasuke.
Now, fans may contend that Sasuke has certainly shown care for her before, and that much is true. But those glimpses of affection were done because he loved her as a friend.
At those times, he already viewed Sakura and Naruto as his family. That’s not enough reason for him to kiss her.
Also, there was the period of time wherein Sasuke literally tried to kill Sakura. Now, some fans use this as a reason to disprove the idea that Sasuke loves Sakura at all.
But then again, saying that would be like saying that Sasuke can’t be a true friend to Naruto, who he also tried to kill.
We don’t really hear that claim going around, do we? If so, then what we have is a double standard, and it cannot be used to factually gauge the situation.
Sasuke tried to kill Sakura in episode 214 of Naruto: Shippuden and chapter 485 of the manga. From his perspective, it was an act of self-defense, since he was considered a rogue ninja. Sakura actually approached him because there was an order to kill him on sight.
Of course, it definitely took them some time to recover from this. Sasuke was also unhinged and not himself at the time. By the time he recovered and began seeing her in a new light, the series was nearing its end.
Given how long it took for him to get to that point, it would be misguided for fans to think that he’s going to give her a kiss just like that. Sure, he could have done so for fan service.
But at the same time, it would go against his pattern of character development, as well as the pacing of their relational growth.
The forehead tap between Sasuke and Sakura keeps them from kissing
The forehead tap is the famous gesture of love between Sasuke and Sakura. Some fans say that the act reflects the depth of their affection. I do agree with that, as Sakura herself said in episode 23 of Boruto that the forehead tap is better than a kiss.
However, I would also like to present that it actually allows them to keep from kissing. In a sense, the move has allowed Sasuke to express his emotions to Sakura without leaning in for a kiss.
This is not to say that he uses it as an excuse; just that it provides him with a means beyond the typical romantic moves.
After all, the forehead tap means a lot to Sasuke. It was something that he used to share with his brother. It was unique, meaningful, and precious.
The fact that he does it to Sakura means that she has become that important to him; that he already values her as if she was a part of his family.
And so Sasuke can tap Sakura on the forehead before he leaves, instead of going in for a goodbye kiss. Although it can seem a little disappointing to viewers, what matters is that the weight of emotion they share is clear.
Here’s a good look at how the first forehead tap went down, so that you can once again witness how significant it is:
Do Sasuke and Sakura Get Together?
Even with the lack of onscreen kisses, Sasuke and Sakura do end up together. The ending of Shippuden already implied that they got married, but Boruto picks that up by showing that they had Sarada together.
And although Sasuke left Sakura after she gave birth, he eventually came back to work things out with her.
Interestingly enough, even when they were lovey-dovey once again, Sasuke refused to kiss her.
In the following scene, Sakura asks Sasuke for a goodbye kiss, but he clearly did not want to do so in front of their daughter. Hence, he left without doing so.
Then again, it probably would have been more surprising if Sasuke did give Sakura a kiss then. The fact that he didn’t is an accurate reflection of his known personality.
Regardless, whether or not Sasuke and Sakura kiss onscreen, what’s important is that they end up happy together.