「開催文化祭！」 (Kaisai Bunkasai!)
“School Festival Start!!”
Gentle Criminal’s last stand.
As soon as flashbacks start playing in the middle of a battle, you know what’s going to happen. As far as how the actiony portions of the Izuku vs Gentle/La Brava battle went, it was great! I especially liked when Izuku showed just why he’s destined to be number one—he’s just so damn smart. Remembering where the invisible jump pads are midair is a pro move, allowing him to triumph where brute force likely wouldn’t have. Then he took a shot from Gentle in Lover Mode meant to knock him out, and didn’t go down. Izuku is hella cool!
As for the philosophical side of the battle, this I enjoyed too, even as I find Gentle’s philosophy roundly on the side of “ignorant and selfish.” He wants to be a man of note, and he had a rough adolescence (side note: Gentle is apparently 32 years old, and La Brava is 21, so while there is an age gap, it’s not as much as it seems), that’s fair. But to turn his back on his dream so thoroughly as to resort to its opposite? I can see giving up. Giving up and doing something else is fine. But betraying your morals our of hurt is not.
Which brings about something which I myself have long believed: Central to being a good adult is to take care of your shit while endeavoring to harm as few people as possible. (And to be there for the people in your life, but that’s besides this present point.) Despite being the oldest of the three, Gentle Criminal does not understand this. It’s messy math, but there is a sort of formula for an amount of harm to others’ dreams which is okay in the pursuit of one’s own goals; Izuku “taking” a spot at U.A. is an example, because it only “harms” the people who wanted his spot while furthering his goal to help others. Gentle Criminal trampling on other’s hopes and joy in the pursuit of self-aggrandizement? That doesn’t pass the smell test.
Another element I supremely enjoyed was how Gentle bounced Izuku away in time to make it look as if they had just snuck in unsuccessfully, rather than there being a fight. Lessening the crime while also not destroying the school festival? Win win in this case. I can’t wait to see our reward—the school festival in full bloom—next time.
- Gentle Criminal is the opponent who illustrate just how damn much Izuku has leveled up. He’s the opponent who would have defeated Izuku at one time, and against which Izuku is now the unbeatable monster. Cool!