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「皆がヒーローになるまでの物語」 (Min’na ga Hīrou ni Naru Made no Monogatari)
“The Story of How We All Became Heroes”

A last stand for idealism? That would be one way to view this episode (especially the A-part) of Boku no Hero Academia. Idealism is an interesting subject generally where this series is concerned. As it’s progressed it’s gotten darker and more jaded, no question. But at heart I think HeroAca – and its author – are basically idealistic by nature. That dichotomy isn’t always a harmonious one, as I think we saw in the work that followed a similar trajectory under its initial creator – Star Wars. It’s no coincidence that Horikoshi loves Star Wars so much he named many of his characters and locations after it.

The Aoyama situation is a tricky one. Deku’s attitude towards it is in many ways very typical for him. He blames himself, and wants to save everybody else. He wants to save Shigaraki for cripes sake, and if anyone has earned enmity it would be him. As Tsukauchi points out things are not so simple here. Yuga may be a minor but he and his parents have already confessed to a very serious crime. One, I might add, which led directly to at least a few deaths. Deku and his classmates are taking what amounts to a childish (or at least childlike) position here. But then, they are children.

We get a little diversion as Izuku and Iiya head off to the Support branch to get some help from Hatsume. Along the way we have a rare bit of straight-up sexual comedy from Horikoshi, and then an odd sight gag involving faces that goes on for several beats longer than convention says it should (and calls attention to it). But quickly enough the focus returns to the upcoming final (for now) battle, and Aoyama’s potential role in it.

In the big picture All Might – who can still help plan battles even if he can’t fight them – sees the key as splitting up the enemy. Shigaraki is at the moment stronger than All For One, he reasons, and the two of them together would be unbeatable. The only reason that didn’t happen against Star and Stripe is because she knew All For One’s name, and he wasn’t about to risk being caught up in New Order’s grip. But in order to accomplish that they’re going to have to split up all of the enemy’s top guns. And the longer they wait and the more Shigaraki recovers, the harder that gets.

Aizawa-sensei is the one who takes the lead with Aoyama. In Japan, homeroom teachers are considered to be responsible if one of their students commits a crime (as ludicrous as that is), and this very much plays into that mindset. Even if he can’t promise Yuga either redemption or forgiveness, Aizawa can encourage Aoyama to fight because if he wants any shot at either, that’s the only path open to him. It seems a longshot that All For One, as meticulous a control freak as he is, would be susceptible to this sort of Trojan attack. But at the moment the good guys are seriously short on advantages (which is why the students are once more taking to the field).



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Boku no Hero Academia 7 – 04