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Boku No Hero Academia Season 2 Review (From a Casual Anime Fan)
Boku no Hero Academia is currently taking the anime genre by storm. Now in its second season, it has managed to attract countless fans from anime-veteran-addict-senpais to casual noobs. As difficult as it is for me to admit, I belong to the latter group. How I wish I could have indulged myself in the ever growing universe of animated beauty much much sooner. Fortunately, the fact that Boku No Hero Academia was able to suck the living crap out of my fanboy soul, only proves how much of a gem this series is. Here are three things I love about the show.
When there's nothing to be gained, rising to the challenge at those times... is surely the mark... of a true hero!!
-Number 1 hero, All Might
1. The "Hero"
I know, I know. Almost every main character in the series is a hero, but I'm not talking about All Might or Endeavor (although they're just as smashing and on fire). After watching the first few episodes of Boku no Hero Academia, I came to love its "hero." Its main protagonist. And that person is none other than the boy with seemingly supernatural tears, Izuku Midoriya. I freaking love this guy.
In a society where everybody has a "quirk" (superhuman powers), and the profession of being a hero is now very viable (and I'm talking about the Superman type of hero), a quirkless boy still dreams of becoming the greatest hero ever, despite the circumstances.
Now I've watched a few animes before to know how cliché this character is. He's very similar to Naruto on how supposedly "weak" he is in the beginning. After all, everybody likes an underdog story and I believe shonen animes capitalize on this by providing you with a very young protagonist with very weak stats in order to hook you into his/hers never ending journey towards self growth. I dare say it works.
Seeing Midoriya's dreams get crushed in the first few episodes was very depressing. I can just relate to what he's experiencing because let's face it, everybody dreams. I myself have an unrealistic dream (not necessarily to be pursued, of course) of becoming a musician/singer despite me having the vocal talent of a dying goat. Let's just hope someone can transfer their singing voice to me! Anyways, the difference between me and Midoriya is that by some gracious miracle he actually gets to inherit a power from All Might, the number one hero.
Now that doesn't seem fair, almost like cheating right? In normal circumstances yes. However, the writer made it so that Midoriya had to earn said power through training and hard work. Even after acquiring it, he still had a long way to go to get used to it and call it his own
Having this kind of background, only makes me want to root for him on everything he does. Boku no Hero Academia, above anything else, made me love the main character. His drive, emotions and passion were all portrayed ever so clearly and even realistic despite being fictional. I can cry with him through sad moments, and rejoice in every victory. That's how good this series is.
I have to work harder than anyone else to make it! I'll never catch up otherwise.
2.) The Quirks
Before I go all emotional and start flooding my room with tears, let's move on to the more exciting part about Boku no Hero Academia. The story is set in a superhuman society in which most people have "quirks." These are superpowers that allows them to achieve amazing feats. Unlike western heroes (Superman..ahem..ahem) whose very existence are sometimes shunned by society, heroes in Boku no Hero Academia are adored by everyone. The government pays them salaries, they have schools that teach hero courses, and are really part of their culture. Everybody wants to become a hero, and everybody can.
In regards to these "powers," the writer has made a power system that's very detailed, dynamic and fair. It's not just "I can shoot lasers". It's more like "I can shoot lasers, but only for 3 seconds depending on the environment and how much banana I ate this morning."
For example, after inheriting One for All, Midoriya Izuku had to get used to it's power. So much so that he could only handle a few percent of that power form the beginning. In fact, his muscles and bones will break if he overdoes it. There's also a quirk that gives super strength after consuming sugar, one that makes nitroglycerin sweat, one that hardens the body, and many more. The "catch" is that every quirk has a limit, and consequences are suffered if overused.
This is what sets Boku no Hero Academia apart from other hero stories. Superpowers here tend not to be too overpowered from the beginning. You don't get them from an unusual incident like getting bit by a spider or getting blasted by gamma rays. In fact, they're something to look forward to. But unlike Superman, the characters in this show have to actually work hard in order to train their bodies and their quirks along with it. Their quirks are much like any physical body part. They're as strong as you train them to be.
If I had a super healing quirk like Wolverine and I was in Boku no Hero Academia, I would say that I could only initially heal a major wound up to two or three times. It's up to me to cultivate it. Through training I can push my limit to five wounds, and then six, and then seven, until I become strong enough to become a great hero.
Would you accept All Might's power?
3. The Action
If I had to be honest to myself, I always felt like a 5-year-old when watching every action sequence in this show. My inner animal desire to see super powers used against other super powers was satisfied. During these moments, I feel like I don't really need to pay attention to the story and just enjoy how beautifully animated this show is. In episode one, Boku no Hero Academia managed to hook me because of this. Seeing how that wood guy fought that giant somehow made me want more. And I got MORE. So much braingasming action that leaves me hooked every goddamn week.
And one of the most action packed parts of this series is the season 2 tournament arc. A TOURNAMENT ARC! That's like the most bad ass thing ever. All the first year students in UA, including our hero, went through so much action, it would make John Wick feel sad. The one on one battles showcased the flashy parts of this show. It also had so much character development than you could ever want. Uraraka needed development? Boom you got it. Todoroki needed one too? Boom, background story. You need to love Midoriya even more? BOOM!
What's even better than the boner inducing animation is the emotions behind every fight. I felt how every character was motivated and how much every attack meant to them. How every loss was a tragedy through individual reasons, and how every victory was a result of hard work.
Boku no Hero Academia is a show of feelings. A show of superhuman stories that can be applied to everyday "human" life. Uraraka's goal to help her parents out through studying is such a common motivation in life, yet so admirable and genuine. Todoroki's family issues felt very real as well, so much so that it made me tear up when he finally confronted his mother. And well, Midoriya is Midoriya.
In conclusion, I will say with all my biased opinion that Boku no Hero Academia is a show worth watching and investing time into. You don't have to be an anime expert to enjoy its contents because they're so simple yet beautiful. If you haven't started watching it yet, and are planning to binge watch the series, prepare to have a few hours of your life sucked into this amazing universe of superpowers, drama, and action.
© 2017 Fredoh Anitan