This particular set contains all 13 episodes are focused on the past of Kakashi Hatake, spanning his time as a member of ANBU to when he forms Squad 7 with Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura. However, the episodes don’t solely focus on Kakashi’s backstory. Interwoven with his stories are stories that expand on or fill in the gaps for the backstories of Yamato and Itachi as well.
For Kakashi, I appreciated how the PTSD he experienced after a particular incident in his past was portrayed. The portrayal was realistic, and it also helps to explain some of the attitudes and behaviors that Kakashi exhibited when he was first introduced as a character in the early part of the series. Yamato’s backstory revelations were riveting to me as a viewer. I also appreciated learning that something that we had heard was part of Itachi’s backstory ended up not being how it was portrayed through dialogue earlier in the series. I hate have to “vague post” like this, but going into too much more detail would provide a lot of spoilers for readers who may not have gotten this far into the Naruto franchise.
In some of these episodes, primarily in the section focusing on Itachi, there were some interesting animation choices that were made. The choices made during the Itachi storyline added some interesting effect and layers to the scenes that they appeared in. But the stylized animation for when the Nine Tails attacked the Leaf Village in one of the earlier episodes didn’t work for me.
Even though these episodes didn’t do anything to propel the main story arc of the Fourth Great Ninja War, it provided a lot of necessary and interesting backstory for some of the characters. Unlike many of the actual filler episodes that have appeared in both Naruto and Naruto Shippuden, I didn’t feel as if these episodes were wasting my time.
Even though I really enjoyed all 13 of the episodes that appeared in Naruto Shippuden Set 28, I’m glad to see that when the next DVD set comes out, the episodes will be returning to the main storyline and will hopefully bring about some more progress for the Fourth Great Ninja War. But Naruto Shippuden Set 28 is definitely worth watching for any Naruto fan.