And now into the final stages of the League of Villains’ absolutely demoralizing attack.
I’m running out of ways to say this show is awesome. Episodes 44 and 45 were some of the most intense the series has had. Some had been concerned about the show’s not really living up to the standards set by the previous two seasons. If these two episodes don’t do it, I haven’t a clue what will. They featured pretty much everything great about the series, including some excellent character work, great action, and biting tension.
Episode 44, in particular, gave us a ton of awesome character moments. It also properly introduced a villain that many were really looking forward to seeing – Toga. The unhinged Yandere, taken to its logical extreme, Toga would’ve been a fairly easy character to mess up. It’s a real razor’s edge between frighteningly unhinged and humorously hammy. Luckily she pulls off the latter. There’s this incredibly unsettling air to her. Yet she just commands attention whenever she’s on-screen. Probably because of how blatantly out of place she seems.
Toga’s proper introduction was accented with one of the better character moments for someone else, too – Best Girl Uraraka. Still easily my favorite non-Deku character in the series, and this episode just proved why. Even for something as minor as what she was able to do, it’s very clear how far she’s come. From being helped constantly by others to actively saving Tsuyu’s life.
But the real highlight of Episode 44 was Deku. It brought back the one thing that’d been honestly missing from the season, so far – Deku’s real superpower. His brain. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that even with two broken arms and an overall severely beat-up upper half, Deku was the reason his crew even survived. He was the one who came up with all of the plans to maximize the odds of staying alive, for one. He came up with the plan to use Bakugo and Todoroki to stop Tokoyami. His escort strategy was exceptionally well thought-out, just outplayed. But most importantly, his quick thinking allowed them to catch up to the main group of the League of Villains once Bakugo and Tokoyami were taken.
Episode 45 saw the conclusion of that “fight,” and I dug it. I already knew how it’d end, so it wasn’t surprising. But the irony of Bakugo being demoted to damsel is too good not to bring up. As long as it doesn’t wind up taking the “Your Princess Is In Another Castle” approach, which I’m fairly certain it won’t, this next portion of the arc is gonna be good. I especially love the dilemma we’re working with here. Though, if I’m honest, I don’t really care about the actual plan of the villains. It’s nothing anyone familiar with comics hasn’t seen before. Villain tries to discredit hero to the public and potentially turn an ally to their side. Not even done in an especially different way, aside from the unique circumstances of the world, itself. But that isn’t to say it’s not effective. It definitely is.
An unsung hero of this series is Yaoyorozu, who is an excellent character across the board, and proved herself in a big way, here, with some quick thinking. There’s a joke somewhat about her being a walking Deus ex Machina. But that doesn’t take anything away from how awesome she is. She created a tracker and had a classmate stick it to a Noumu. So the pro heroes plan to use it to find Bakugo. But Kirishima isn’t taking Bakugo’s abduction well and advocates trying to rescue him, themselves. It’s stupid and he’s well aware of that. But now we leave off with a divide in the class.
Iida recalling the aftermath of the fight with Stain put a lot into perspective. So now there’s this divide between Iida and Kirishima, with the decision falling on Deku. I’m not exactly sure why the rest of the class is letting this fall on him, especially considering the condition he’s in at the moment. But semantics. The point is that I like seeing the characters having to deal with things like this. These are the sorts of hard calls on has to be ready to make in this kind of situation. Deku feels a level of personal responsibility for letting Bakugo get captured. But he was there for Stain. He knows the correct way to deal with this – let the pros do it. I really look forward to seeing how this pans out.
In the meantime, both of these episodes were excellent. Super Effective across the board. The thing this series does best is show the growth of characters. It’s often subtle, like the fight Class B had, not long ago. But then you get really defining moments like Uraraka saving Tsuyu or Yaoyorozu using her ingenuity and quick thinking to create an opportunity for the good guys, thus taking another step towards being her ideal hero. I can’t wait to see more of that. But for a show where things are taken a bit less seriously, I recently did a full retrospective on one of my favorite Junk Food series, Date A Live. Yup. At long last, I delivered on that promise. Check it out when ya get a minute.
In the meantime, My Hero Academia is Simulcast on Crunchyroll, Saturdays at 5:30am EST. And both Seasons 1 and 2 are also available to stream. That’s all for this time, guys. Thanks for reading, as always. Keep up the Awesome.