So how do you follow up an episode like Bright Future? An unenviable task for sure. Last week’s My Hero Academia rocked me and essentially recontextualized the entire season for me. Potentially the entire series. It’s a much harsher and more uncompromising world that greets me this week, but also more empathic. One with real stakes and true loss. It’s no longer about plot holes or quirk potential. The story moved beyond its trappings but now it has to find its place and itself once more.
If I have had one complaint about season 4, it’s that the pacing is a bit off. Oh. hey Crow! How are you this week? We’re going to talk about episode 78 of My Hero Academia. There will be spoilers, but there’s really nothing to spoil this week. I guess that’s kind of a spoiler in itself. Ooops. Also, Crow is in bold!
Hey, Irina! Nice summary of the impact this arc has had. It forced some self-reflection — why was I watching MHA? Do the changes you described have an impact? I think they do. It sorta reminds me of the feeling I had watching my own kids grow up. It’s the difference in stakes between “Dad, I didn’t chosen as lead for the school play” and “Dad, the rental office won’t release my paperwork for the home loan!”
As you can guess, I think I’m cool with the changes.
And very happy my kids won’t have to face Overhaul.
As I was saying, the one thing that I have genuinely reproached this season of My Hero Academia, is the lack of dramatic tension breaks. The first half has been essential a linear ramp up that had me enthralled but also a little exhausted. By now, I didn’t just want a break, I needed it. How often do you end up hoping for a filler episode?
Thankfully, My Hero Academia did one better and gave us essentially a mid-season recap episode with a bit of new story bookending it.
We start out with Gran Torino starting the confrontation with the League in earnest by capturing Kurogiri and discovering Gigantomachia (who seems to be more of a weapon than a villain). This is just a brief setup for a future league arc and the episode moves on pretty quickly. It did make me notice something. I find Gran Torino super comforting. I’m not sure why but when he’s around I feel like everything is going to be alright. No other character does that for me, especially not now. Do you get the same sense Crow? Maybe I’m a sucker for grandfather figures?
It might sound contrived, but I thought the same thing! (We issued our spoiler warning, right?) After seeing Nighteye die in the previous episode, it was reassuring to see a hero of Gran Torino’s age still in the fight. That, and I just like the character a lot!
After that, we got to see Deku back on his feet but rather shaken by everything that has happened, go see Mirio, who is stuck in observation for a while longer as his quirk seems to be permanently gone. As he leaves, the news recounts the league’s attack on the transport that was carrying Overhaul to prison, the commentator mentioning the death of another hero in the background. It goes without specific notice from the characters but the world has changed. Heroes are not immortal anymore. As such, it was possible that Mirio would have felt this as well.
But the thing is, Mirio isn’t impressive because he’s strong or because he’s always been a winner. He’s impressive because he has a weak quirk and has known mostly setbacks. If anyone can bounce back from something, even something as horrible as what happened last week, Mirio can. And he did. Refusing Deku’s offer of giving him his quirk (I’m not sure why… I mean All-Might didn’t lose his quirk when he gave Deku some DNA. As far as I know they could both simply have the same quirk and continue being heroes, everyone’s happy. Gah… «I said I would stop doing this). Ok, so there’s this Quirk confusion here but it’s in service of a character-defining moment for Mirio and he is way more useful as a foil than another cookie-cutter hero so I’ll take it.
Actually, I like it when you notice stuff like that, so please don’t stop! It’s an important question, and I think Mirio might have said no for two reasons. First, he wants to see if Eri can rewind him to get his own quirk back. Second, it’s an issue of pride. He doesn’t want to accept Deku’s charity.
Plus, though All-Might didn’t lose his quirk, he was on the down swing of his career. How much of that was his injury, and how much was diminishing One for all?
The second Kiri, Deku, Ura and Froppy stepped back on UA grounds, I was hit with a warm feeling of welcoming nostalgia. I missed this place. I missed it way more than I had realized. And I missed all the other students. It was a treat seeing them all react in their own way to this huge situation that was beyond most of them.
This is where the recap portion of the episode was so I don’t have that much to say about it other than I
was glad to be home.
It really was like coming home. I’m not a big fan of parties; I don’t like groups of people. But the warm welcome the other students gave them was just fantastic. It was just adorable how Iida tried to hold everyone back so the returning heroes could rest — and then when Deku said it was cool, Iida was first in line to express himself!
We also got the set up for next week. It looks to be a mostly comical filler type episode focusing on the mostly absent Todoroki and Bakugo. Two huge fan favourites. It’s been nice following all these earnest golden-hearted heroes around, but once in a while you need a moody jerk and a jerky jerk for some contrast. It makes you better appreciate what you have, you know? And it looks like it’s going to be silly. I hope Bakugo doesn’t murder any children. That will be very unexpected… Then again…
I had to feel for Todorki. Just knowing Endeavor was going to be there had to be a major weight. And based on how Endeavor talked to All-Might, I suspect Endeavor might act the most childish of all the kids Todorki and Gakugo have to deal with!