in The Anime Beat

The Anime Beat: My Hero Academia

In a world where everyone is Super, what does it take to be a real Hero?

Izuku Midoriya was born without a Quirk or super genetic ability. This is rare, over 80% of the population has abilities of varying strengths! Even though he was teased for it he never gave up his dream of being a professional Hero. He is working hard towards getting into U.A. High, a training school for Heroes, and it seems impossible until a chance meeting with All Might, No. 1 Hero, and Midoriya’s role model.

This show plays with the traditional tropes of superhero stories and really makes the genre its own. It harkens back to those roots with the character of All Might. He’s your classic, Superman-esque hero: tall, buff, and with very tall, very blond hair just in case you forgot that he’s very American. He does speak in English quite a lot and his moves are all named after states (Missouri Smash is obviously my favorite). He serves a Midoriya’s mentor in the same way that comic books were obviously an inspiration for this show.

 

One of the contrasts in the show is Power vs. Heart. You see this in the main character, Midoriya, and his rival, Bakugo. Bakugo has all the advantages Midoriya doesn’t. He was born with a very powerful ability and apparently has the smarts to pass UA’s difficult written tests without studying too hard. However, he doesn’t have the temperament we usually associate with a hero. He’s competitive, aggressive, mean, and only barely has a hold on his temper. Midoriya, on the other hand, is highly motivated to help others. He rushes into a dangerous situation in the first episode to help Bakugo when he has nothing he can really do to help. He’s very protective of his classmates and rarely uses his abilities, relying instead on his strength and determination to get by.

These two wildly different characters are striving towards the same goal, as is everyone else in the show, to be a Hero. Their motivations and abilities all vary so much it really makes the audience question what makes a Hero. I think Midoriya’s character really relates to the climate of the world right now. There is so much chaos and worry and heartache to be found around us. It’s easy to think that you, one person, can’t make a difference. You don’t have the clout or money or audience to do anything substantial. But you don’t need any of that to do something. Even if it’s small, even if it seems like you’re Midoriya ineffectively punching a swamp monster, you can inspire others. Anyone can be a hero. Super or not.

 

 

Even if Meagan E. Garey wanted to set down her mint cocoa in her very favorite Kiki’s Delivery Service mug, there is absolutely no room. Scrapbook paper, Perler beads, stationary, embroidery thread, origami birds, and packages of clay litter the small desk. Instead, she opts to stand, put the cup on top of a nearby shelf, and get back to work. Her library haul of the latest YA fantasy, a chunky graphic novel, and some classic that was overlooked in school and moved to the floor to make more room. She pops on a movie to watch while she works. The familiar animated faces make her smile and make the work go by faster as she repeats the well-memorized lines. Don’t worry, she’ll write that next article… eventually.

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