Sunday, August 22, 2021

REVIEW: My Hero Academia, Season One (anime TV series)

My Hero Academia is a superhero series based on a manga of the same title. I bought my copy of this season brand new.


In the world of this series, people started mysteriously developing superpowers, called Quirks, some time ago. Now 80% of the world has them, and they're seen as normal.

Izuku Midoriya has looked up to the hero All Might since he was a child and always wanted to be just like him, so it was a huge blow when a doctor told him that he was Quirkless. Now that he's older, it's still his dream to attend U.A. High School, the top school for prospective heroes, but is that even possible for someone without a Quirk? Then one day he encounters All Might, learns his hero's biggest secret, and is gifted powers that could make his dream a reality, if he can ever figure out how to control them.

This is one of those enormously popular shows I've been meaning to try for years. It's now up to its fifth season, so I'm a wee bit behind.

My personal verdict: it's okay, but not the addictive experience I was expecting based on its popularity. I just checked, and it looks like it's streaming on Funimation, so I'll probably watch more of it, but if I didn't have a Funimation subscription I'm not sure whether I'd be continuing on. It felt like the show took ages to really get going, and there were too many characters introduced too quickly who almost all had at least a mild case of main character-itis. It was hard to really get to know any of them or get attached.

It also didn't help that I wasn't a fan of All Might's design. He was supposed to be this amazing and inspiring hero, and instead I thought his constant smile was a bit creepy. Also, the superhero schooling system seemed just as likely to produce bullies as heroes (I'm looking at you, Bakugo).

The big villains were introduced fairly late in the season and viewers were given no opportunity to learn their backstories or even much about their motives. I did want to find out more, but, again, if I didn't have access to Funimation's streaming catalog, I'm not sure I'd be willing to put in the effort and money.

There were definitely some things I found appealing. Although the effect of Midoriya's powers was worrisome (for the most part, he couldn't use them without seriously injuring himself), he demonstrated multiple times that he was smart enough to weigh different options and consider the consequences of using his powers too much or in the wrong moment. And All Might's secret made him more appealing than I think he would have been if he'd just been a stereotypical powerful hero - he had limitations he had to keep in mind and things he was trying to keep from revealing to anyone beyond a few people at U.A. High School.

Who knows, maybe this is one of those series that'll just take a while to grow on me. I suppose I'll find out when I watch Season 2.


Nothing but trailers for other shows.

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