「知れ!!昔の話」 (Shire!! Mukashi no Hanashi)
“Listen Up!! A Tale from the Past”
Talking made epic.
Each portion of this episode was enjoyable, in the different ways that all of HeroAca is fun.
Much of it hinged upon HeroAca’s large cast, and the joy that comes from seeing them together. The back-to-class scene was this, where it was just fun to see how everyone has changed, them giving each other shit, and their reaction to what Izuku, Shouto, and Tenya went through. Jiro defending the girls’ modesty was this too, as was everyone’s excitement about the training camp. It’s just hard not to love them all! (Except Mineta—though I guess Mt Lady didn’t totally ruin his view of women, so, uh, good for him?)
One thing of special note: Kaminari saying how the Hero Killer is kind of cool. It’s true that he was tenacious, as Iida said, but don’t forget the bodies. Never forget the bodies. With enough space and time, even mass murderers can become cool—history would have us believe that Alexander was Great, that Ghengis Kahn brought about peace of a sort, that Napoleon was an enlightened despot—and maybe some of that is true. But that forget the bodies. Never forget the bodies. Fortunately Horikoshi-sensei knows this, and was using Kaminari and Iida to get the point across. That’s good, though I still want to belt Kaminari upside the head, hah!
The rescue race was a special kind of fun, all because of Izuku. Did you get that thrill, when everyone else was talking about how Izuku was at a disadvantage, and you knew it wouldn’t work out like that? That’s a special kind of fanservice right there, where we’re in on the joke and our hero’s hard work (and the look of shock on their faces, especially Katsuki’s), is the payoff. I mean, he didn’t get to win, but that’s all right. The surprise on everyone’s faces was the real reward.
Then came the discussion with All Might, and damn if Bones didn’t manage to make even a scene full of talking into something compelling. Part of that is the material, of course; Horikoshi-sensei gave them gold to work with, and Bones isn’t a studio to look a gift horse in the mouth. But a lot of it had to do with the OST, so I guess props go to sound director Mima Masafumi on this one. The music built everything up into a crescendo at least twice, then left us holding our breath as the critical line was spoken, then it receded . . . and then it was time to do it again. Well done.
As for the content, I was spoiled on the One For All vs All For One conflict a while back, so while none of this was a surprise, it does up the ante. Before the last few episodes, the League of Villains was a problem, but it felt like Izuku’s problem. Now this is a generational conflict, linking Izuku all the way back to the very first One For All user, and setting him up to finish a battle that All Might wasn’t quite able to tie up. The stakes are raised, and the villain has gone from worrisome to diabolical. The extent to which I’ve been spoiled has been exhausted at this point (so mark and tag those spoilers, boys and girls), so I have no idea what the Symbol of Evil has in mind. It sure sounds like he’s grooming Shigaraki Tomura to be the next user of All For One, though, and that doesn’t sound good. It doesn’t sound good at all.
If only All Might wasn’t a coward in this one way. I likewise don’t know if the reason he soon won’t be able to stand with Izuku is because he’ll be fully retired, or dead, but either way, he couldn’t bring himself to tell his protege the truth. Probably should of, but that’ll make for some manly tears later on, I’d warrant.
- “If superpowers had never appeared, then humans would be taking interstellar holidays by now.” Well :/
My SECOND novel, Freelance Heroics, is available now! (Now in print!) (Also available: Firesign #1 Wage Slave Rebellion.) Sign up for my email list for exclusive content. At stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: I get it now!; Guardians of the Galaxy, Glee, & Firesign; That’s not supposed to go there . . .; and The Carcer Principle.