「スタートライン、爆豪の。」 (Sutaato Rain, Bakugou no)
“Bakugo’s Start Line”

There’s more to Katsuki than meets the eye.

Seeing The Others Fight, Just A Little

I admit to being disappointed that we didn’t get to see more of the others fight, save for the one, because it would have been cool to see what everyone else can do. We got some hints, but not much on many of them. That’s what my monkey brain thinks, though. My writer’s brain realizes how wise this choice was. Exposition should only be offered when it’s necessary, and this first training session was still all about Deku and Kacchan. Showing off Todoroki Shouto’s (Kaji Yuki) had an effect on that plot—of demonstrating how far Katsuki has to go. We’ll get to the others in time.

More Than Meets The Eye

Katsuki’s greatest strength, and his greatest weakness, is his pride. His was a brittle pride, I thought, powerful but vulnerable in a way that a more flexible self-worth is not. Turns out it’s not as fragile as I thought. Which is fantastic storytelling. I appreciate it when another storyteller can lead me around by the nose, and make me think Katsuki’s pride would crack and shatter, when instead he’s just getting started. That’s what makes Katsuki more than the one-dimensional bully he appears to be—he realizes he can’t beat Todoroki, he finds himself agreeing with Yaoyorozu Momo (Inoue Marina), and he admits that the pebble that is Deku just kicked his ass. We get to learn a lot about many characters this episode, but the biggest lesson is that there’s more to Katsuki than meets the eye. This is one of the few HeroAca episodes that doesn’t leave me with chills, but it did leave me thinking. For a “cliché” shounen series, that’s a good trick.

Stilts Note: I’m moving halfway across the country this week, so it’s putting a crimp on my blogging time. Thank you to Passerby, who helped me with this post, and to Takkun, who has graciously agreed to cover episode nine for me. Y’all rock!

tl;dr: @StiltsOutLoud – Deku, Momo, & Shouto prove to Katsuki that he isn’t all that after all. Turns out he’s not as fragile as I thought #heroaca 08

Random thoughts:

  • Nothing like a demure nudist for gap moe. How is she not cold even without ice-fire guy mucking up the place?
  • Oh Grape-kun, yoooou!
  • I feel like Uraraka is a yaoi fangirl in the making. I feel like being involved in a fated battle between men is a huge turn-on for her, so well done Deku.

My first novel, Wage Slave Rebellion, is available now. (More info—now in paperback!) Sign up for my email list for a FREE sequel novella. Over at stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: I love sales jobs, Good realism is character realism, Dying idols, and Frictionless routines.




  1. Seriously, Bakugou is one of my favorite characters. If I am very honest with you, his is a character rarely done well. Horikoshi sensei is very good at what he does. He has to, the dude gave us a talented character who is an asshole and a hothead that I feel we as the audience can actually emphasize with, and that is very goddamn hard to do.

    Also Todoroki is an unadulterated badass.

    Art of Kuma
      1. To be fair, Tsuyu has had a lot of development. Show Spoiler ▼

        Stilts edit: Maybe don’t mention so much development that hasn’t happened yet outside of spoiler tags, even if you didn’t explicitly spoil specific things. Thanks.

  2. So Bakugou was inflated with praises since childhood that his superiority complex stems from living up to those praises. While I now feel a little sorry for the guy seeing how pressuring that can be, right now I’m still not warming up to him because of everything he did since the anime started, and by that I mean all the times he gave Izuku a hard time. The harshest being beating up Izuku in the debut episode for standing up for someone. I’m glad it was Izuku of all people that humbles him, and really up to now I can’t him as Izuku’s childhood “friend” since from their childhood flashbacks, I thought Bakugou allows Izuku to tag along so he has a loyal fan who admires him so much to push around and make Bakugou look more superior. Well, that’s just my opinion on it.

    Nothing like a demure nudist for gap moe.

    Funny thing is there’s nothing to get all moe about aside from Tooru’s voice and personality, which makes her cute. Guess you could say that adds to the mystery appeal since we have no idea what she looks like.


    Gotta say Mina and Tsuyu too have their appeal. Both are cute. Momo though is the one that got my attention for her looks and brains.

  3. I can’t stress how much I love that All Might isn’t an infallible figure, that he develops, and how his ideology can actually be questioned.
    Makes him so much more relatable.

  4. I was really surprised when the students actually enjoyed All Might’s class. I thought they were going to say things like “this is lame”.

    It was funny to see that their quirks are just too different to allow for any elaborate plans. The best quirk for the situation usually wins. I guess that’s part of the life of a super hero, as seen in episode 02, most heroes were waiting for a hero with a better quirk to show up, in order to save Bakugou.

    The villains introduction was great. After seeing them in the opening, I thought they were going to be less vicious, but the evil vibe was intense.

    1. There’s certainly an element of rock/paper/scissors, but I think just saying “best Quirk wins” is an excuse. Sometimes that’s true, and your abilities are unsuitable to the task. The rest of the time, it’s how you use it.

      1. I absolutely agree with you, and it wouldn’t be interesting if it was the way I described it!

        I was trying to think as the average/forgettable hero-worker in HeroAca’s society, and I wasn’t surprised that, at their current level, the battles were pretty straightforward (at least it seemed like they were).

        I’m sure they will learn to do better than that, making the most out of an supposedly worse quirk.

      2. I thoroughly enjoy it when stories with special ability elements lean more toward how can you make the most of X ability. When they start looking at the secondary and even tertiary/quaternary side effects of their power as a viable tactic to victory, it makes me think that the creator put some thought into the story. Like in One Piece and Index/Railgun and all the crazy things they get up to with abilities. Basically I nerd out on the nuts and bolts of how an ability or gimmick works and all the slick things that can be done because someone has a thorough understanding of how said power works. That being said, I semi geeked out when Bakugo talked about his sweat properties and how he was able to store it for a flamethrower-type attack. I also saw some potential growth in mindset and power when he admitted that he is unable to defeat Todoroki. I can also appreciate that sometimes no matter how creative you get with a power, there is one that is better suited for the task. It lends to more people equally participating in a team fight and playing off of everyone’s strengths instead of one person doing all the heavy lifting with shounen rage yelling while all the others are sidelined explaining how amazing the person is in quiet awe. Sorry. Unfocused rant. It’s late and I saw an interesting talking point and got a little crazy.

        The Waker
  5. https://randomc.net/image/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia%20-%2008%20-%2008.jpg

    Winter superheroing’s gonna be a real pickle for her…
    Horikoushi’s notes state it was supposed to be an invisible boy, but then he decided an invisible girl’d be more interesting.

    Bakugou’s original personality was supposed to be an upbeat but “airheaded” natural genius who didn’t realize he was inadvertedly hurting those around him. Horikoushi made him meaner after finding that personality “lame”, but has promised to handle his character “with care”.

  6. I really don’t like Tsuyu’s voice, she sounds like a granny and it really ruins the character. On a positive note, I am overjoyed to see Todoroki in action.

    1. Which is funny, because for me Tsuyu’s voice is FANTASTIC. It really fit her offbeat appeal, I thought.

      She should be getting a pretty good part in the season finale, I guess we’ll see how we feel then.

  7. I never really warmed up to Katsuki and I don’t think he’s a particularly deep or nuanced character, but I do think he’s an important part of the cast (and the class).

    We’ll only get to see the tournament arc if a second season is greenlit, which is a shame because I thought Katsuki and Urakara really shined in that one.

  8. Yup, Katsuki surprised me, pleasantly. I’m so glad he isn’t a villain in the making after all, like his pride would indicate. He still has it, but it’s more grounded now. That’s character development right there.

    Speaking of villains, way to totally creep me out with this psycho’s character design. Already speaks volumes of how powerful he is. So sick.

    And lastly, even though Momo’s analysis of the fight from last episode is mostly correct and helped making it necessary for the battles to be taken seriously, I have to point out her notion that the heroes’ strategy only worked because it broke the rules. Whoever said anything about any rules? In a real fight, you don’t follow any rules to defeat your enemy, especially when they’re overwhelming and you want to turn the tide of the battle to your advantage, or when you try to take an early upper hand and make sure your enemy doesn’t catch up. Does that upcoming villain look like he will play by the rules? Even the weak ones with apparently no advantage whatsoever can win that way, as displayed by Deku and Uraraka. Just a thought.

    1. You missed the goddamn point.

      The rule is that you must treat Paper bomb as a real bomb in this exercise and act accordingly. In real life there’s no way a villain would try to guard a paper bomb. Deku and Uraraka disregard that fact and go for the plan that would detonate the fucking nuke if it’s the real thing.

      Do you even watch the episode you donut?

      1. Except it wouldn’t. Nuclear weapons do not carry impact triggers. They use time-delay fuzes or remotely detonated triggers. Hitting a real bomb with small rocks is completely harmless. This is a critical research fail on the author’s part, where he marks Uraraka off for something she should not have been marked off for.

      2. I know how nuclear explosives work, something clearly the author did not know. If he wanted it to be a fantastical bomb he could have called it an infinite number of things. Instead he called it a nuke, and those are predefined to behave in certain ways, because otherwise they can’t work.

        Now, before you start a post full of swearing at me, some things to think about. You seem to be getting fairly heated about this, but perhaps you should take a moment to step back and look at what we’re actually talking about and ask yourself if this discussion is actually worth getting yourself that riled up over. This isn’t personal to me. It’s a “hey the author din’t look into this before he wrote about it, funny huh?” moment, and then I go on to see what else people are saying. If it’s getting personal for you, then you’re basically wasting your energy, because I just don’t care all that much. This isn’t a plot point, or a defining character moment, or anything that needs defending to the death. It’s a “hey, he messed up there. So what’s next?”

      3. @wanderer; im guessing the purpose behind marking points off for ochako because of what she did is to prevent her from doing something that may have been critical towards detonating the bomb. Yes, nukes are not impact based however it is still not advised to hit a nuke with a tremendous amount of force. The impact may mess with the careful time-delay fuses and while the nuke wont reach critical levels like it would normally, there is still a possibility it can explode to some sort of degree. Like you mentioned, the rocks ochako flung at the nuke (and her hugging it as well) would not trigger the nuke whatsoever. But what if she had sent something much larger towards the nukes direction; something with a higher chance to disrupt the fusion or fission process within the nukes (something really huge). Now granted that is a big what if, but i think that’s the what the other was trying to get at. The behavior ochako displayed had it been a different circumstance could have created a more dangerous situation, and that’s what she needs to curb in the future. Of course this is me just giving the author the benefit of the doubt because he never explicitly states that the force ochako hit the nuke with was enough to trigger an explosion; he just said that ochako could have recklessly caused the nuke to go off in a different situation had she acted the way she did.

        And who knows; the nuke was probably being used abstractly in this situation for any kind of item that could cause an explosion so technically, the author was just generalizing her actions to whatever explosive material a villain may be using; the author was probably not indicating that a nuke itself would explode if she did what she did. Again this is all conjecture but all im saying is that the scene didnt explicitly make a claim that nukes are triggered by impact. If momo said that in her explanation, then it would be a completely different story and all evidence would point to the author not having done his research. But then again, maybe this IS a flub on the author’s part; it’s hard to say in this kind of situation which is why i didnt make note of it

      4. @sonicsenryaku: Fair enough. The idea of the fake nuke serving as the stand-in for a more generic explosive or other objective is one that I hadn’t thought about, and that seems fair. It’s all situational, really. What she did could be perfectly valid in some situations, and absolutely suicidal in others.

        Really who was best in this exercise is an unimportant issue, in the grand scheme of things. The purpose of this test was to give Bakugo a humbling experience and to better acquaint us with his personality and his reasoning. Beyond that nothing that happened here really matters as far as the rest of the story goes.


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