「THE試験」 (THE Shinken)
“The Test”

Before I get to the meat of this episode: Ochako. OMG this girls got it bad!! I’m totally with Mina here, total shipping mode engaged. I also like how this is a series where the lack of progress in their relationship feels natural. It’s another byproduct of HeroAca’s large, well-utilized cast. If we were spending all our time with Izuku and Ochako, it’d feel strange for there not to be more progress by now, but since there are so many others, their slow pace feels right. Also, there’s their nerdy/dorky personalities. Love it! More!

As for the hero provisional exam, I like how the tall odds draw directly from an actual tactical disadvantage the U.A. students have, not just petty vindictiveness. It could have been different. The others could be going after them simply because they’re from the top dog school, and they’re jealous/petty about that. But the televised sports festival gives them a real, material weakness compared to the other schools, which makes them an excellent first target.

Or does it?

In this case, yes. Eraser Head made a decision: he doesn’t want his class to pass the test. What he wants is for them to become excellent heroes. If they cannot pass this test without foreknowledge of the crushing of U.A., they don’t deserve to pass it. They will have this disadvantage later in their careers. This is excellent training, with the other students serving as villain roleplayers to U.A.’s heroes. This will make them stronger, whether they pass or fail.

Had Eraser Head warned them, though, this would be nearly a boon, provided they could develop their quirks far enough. If your enemy thinks they know what you can do—take the Ketsubutsu kid referring to Izuku’s power that destroys himself—then the advantage is yours, provided you can do something just different enough with their expectations to throw them off and quickly snatch your victory. Absolute surprise would be more useful, but as an advantage that doubles as incentive to develop your quirk really fast, this ain’t bad. And it might have a larger positive effect on your future career than simply obtaining the provisional license.

As it is though, Class 1-A is getting a true trial by fire. Fight back and win, or get crushed. I like it almost as much as Ms. Joke (Nagai Mariko) and her constant teasing of and flirting with Eraser. More! More of her, and more of this! I will ship all the pairings!

Random thoughts:

  • To once again opine on Stain’s philosophy: what a childish person. It would be nice if the world worked like that, if heroes did it for the right reasons alone, but unless society goes full Star Trek post-currency enlightenment, where no one is hungry or has unfulfilled needs or material wants, it’s untenable. You want specialists? You gotta pay ’em. It’s the same for police and soldiers. And if it hinges on a semantic quibble over the word “hero” … well. That sounds like a tiresome reason to become a serial killer right there. What an ignorant, privileged way of thinking.
  • Bonus: Commander Izuku. He really is turning out to be different than All Might, in ways that are very Deku. And it makes him all the stronger, as a hero and a character.

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 updates. At stephenwgee.com, the latest post: Risk Tolerance in the Creative Life.




      1. I don’t think Stain’s philosophy is saving that “Heroes” can’t be compensated but rather they shouldn’t do their work with the express expectation of compensation. Be a hero because you want to help people and do good, not because you want to be rich and famous. If fame and fortune comes along with it then fine but don’t explicitly shoot for it.

        Strive to be Mr. Rogers and not Bill Cosby I guess. Or better, Midoriya instead of Mineta.

      2. @smoker365
        I agree with your view about Stein’s ideal completely, although that’s also exactly why I call him “want to have his cake and eat it too”. One can certainly shoots for money and fame and still be heroic (i.e. uraraka, mountain lady). To ironically quote Joker, “if you are good at something, never do it for free”

  1. https://randomc.net/image/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia%20-%2053%20-%20Large%2007.jpg
    I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at this point, but damn that hair style on Tsu is something else.

    And also, damn Eraser Head is so immune to laughter. Good luck having a girlfriend man XD

    With more schools involved with never before seen quirks, this is shaping up to be even tougher than the school festival. And they’re gonna be on the same power levels this time, with U.A. being exposed thanks to the festival. It’s already so intense. Can’t wait to see how they pull it off. And in the midst of all that, is Ochako gonna be distracted by her crush on Deku, like she was in her final exam with Aoyama, or is she gonna pull it together? It’s a good thing something like that never happens if they’re in a situation where lives are at stake, like the summer camp, but still, get distracted now and you’ll have it harder to get the hero license later on. Let’s see what you’re made of Ochako. I’m rooting for you.

    1. When the rubber meets the road, Ochako usually has her head in the gain. I don’t think she’ll get flustered here, or will only get flustered once the challenge has receded enough for it to not impact her chances.

  2. I am just glad the show is back and ramping it up. Loved the subtlety of the writing where Kacchan picked up on the fake smiles of the new guy but no one else did and how Eraser head thinks where the students are concerned. Lots of things to love about this show and of course there is Ocahko 🙂

  3. I wouldn’t say that Aizawa doesn’t want the class to pass the test… rather that he actually believes they can do so despite this disadvantage. But, if they can’t, then he’s not going to coddle them: if they can’t handle this they don’t deserve the license they’re aiming for.

    In other news, while the shipping stuff with Ochako is cute, what caught my attention more was that she’s able to make herself float for a solid minute without getting nauseous. That’s a heck of an improvement compared to the beginning of the series, and it speaks volumes for how effective the quirk-training is.

    1. I think what Stilts meant to say there wasn’t that Aizawa didn’t want the class to pass the test, it’s more like Aizawa didn’t want his class to just “go to the test and pass it”, he wants them to earn the license.

      Joke might think Aizawa hates his class because he’s throwing his students into a test one year too early, with much less preparation than even the prodigies from other schools that are taking the test early too (Inasa), and while they’re still sort of recovering from the disaster of the summer camp ambush – and on top of it all, he created an additional disadvantage to boot. But when you think about it, the pro heroes in UA got their asses handed to them by the League of Villains a short time ago, and Aizawa (and the rest of the UA staff) might think the students need preparation for situations where they have almost no chance of winning.

    2. What TheYepMan said. He doesn’t want them to pass above all else. He wants them to deserve to pass, to earn their passing grade, even if it means they have a disadvantage compared to everyone else.

  4. In retrospect, the special move training just before the exam wasn’t just about developing their quirks for hero duty – it was also a sneaky way to give the kids new tools to deal with the disadvantage of everyone else knowing their Quirks without explicitly warning them about it.

    Thinking about it now, it’s not too different from real life – when my calculus teacher started placing extra emphasis on certain types of problems just before the midterm exams, I shouldn’t have been surprised when those problems turned out to be worth more than half of the overall marks.

    Needless to say, I was nowhere near as good a student as Deku…


    Well we just dove head-first into this new arc didn’t we? It all has a very Hunter X Hunter vibe what with the new dynamic character designs, strategic exposition, and a whole new sports arc coming!

  6. Not exactly a fair fight for Invisible Girl when they take away her battle advantage for the most part for the fight. Both the school testing and here seem to not take the specialist skills of some hero’s into account for determining results. And a team engagement which can break down to battle royal has so much luck in play it not totally fair to any. If you want to run a series of 20 of them and evaluate each person from the film you probably can get a better evaluation of each hero’s skill level.
    I missing something though. If this is a provisional license there first should be a mandatory written test on laws and expected hero behavior first. The written test would pass all questions or fail and all who passed go on to the rest.

    Stain’s is the extremist’s view. Extremists are often most hard on those who you would think on their side but that doesn’t qualify to the extremist as pure enough. In other words, the extremist often hates heretics more than anything in example Dash(ISIS) hates Shiite Muslims more than anything else because of the belief that the Shiites don’t follow Islam correctly. Yes hates more than Americans or Israel. So to Stain, the problems of the hero’s not being pure enough is worse than any villain. Again as an extremist Stain tried to convince thought words but felt because his words were not working he had to take action.
    I look forward to the Fusion Powered, Robotic, 3D Printing world where the price of power falls so low and the prosperity level rises so high with a robot to take any unwanted job. Then we can switch to the Federation post money world and people do what they basically want to do.

  7. https://randomc.net/image/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia/Boku%20no%20Hero%20Academia%20-%2053%20-%2005.jpg
    This guy continues to shoot himself in the foot every single time. He might as well call himself “The Quirk that will never be used – guy.”

    Okay, let me get this straight: the challenge is to stick balls onto targets on the persons’ bodies? You do know what Grape-kun’s major Quirk power is, correct? Throwing grape balls that stick to other people and objects for long periods of time?

    GO, GRAPE-KUN! This is YOUR moment!


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