Everything You Need to Know Before My Hero Academia Comes Backby Nicholas Dupree,
My Hero Academia, last year's hit shounen action title, is circling around for a second season, and it looks to be coming back with a bang. Boasting a larger episode count, even more big-name animators courtesy of Studio Bones, and a brand new prime-time slot, all signs point to Season 2 being a confident continuation of the already solid first season. There's a lot to look forward to for fans of the manga and anime alike, so it's worth looking back on the first season for a little refresher. Consider this a crash course in Your Hero Academia!
MHA takes place in a world where superpowers aren't just common, they're the norm. Various kinds of Quirks, as they're called, have become as natural as different eye colors over the past several generations, fundamentally changing society worldwide. Now that every crook and vandal could be a bonafide comic book villain, there's a new rising profession: Super Heroism. No longer the stuff of comics and movies, costumed crusader can be a career choice, complete with school courses, license tests, and sponsorship deals. Many a kid dreams of becoming a hero when they grow up, but it's by no means an easy journey, which becomes abundantly clear when we meet the lead of our story.
Izuku “Deku” Midoriya has been a superhero fanboy basically since birth, but in a classic case of irony, he was born without a Quirk of any kind. Ever the determined kid, Izuku never totally gave up on his dream to become a hero, and he finally earned his chance after demonstrating his heroic spirit in front of his lifelong role model, All Might. Proving himself to be of resolute spirit, Izuku earns the chance to inherit One For All, All Might's very own Quirk. With a new power that he can scarcely control and the cavalier training of his greatest idol under his belt, Izuku joins the prestigious hero course at UA High and takes his first step toward becoming the hero he's always wanted to be.
All Might – the #1 professional hero in the world and the legendary “Symbol of Peace,” whose reputation and brute strength have ushered in a golden age of heroism for the world. But this pillar of justice isn't quite as invulnerable as he seems. Due to a devastating injury in the line of duty, he's slowly been losing his physical prowess and can only work as a hero for a few hours a day – leading him to search for a successor. As it turns out, All Might's Quirk of immense strength and agility is one he inherited and can pass on to another – Izuku. Thus the world's greatest hero now plays mentor to his anxious and under-prepared protege. But All Might's figure casts a long shadow that's earned him as many enemies as admirers, and that legacy is something he'll have to help Izuku grapple with if the kid's going to thrive as a hero.
Katsuki Bakugo, Izuku's childhood frenemy turned outright bully, was born with a silver spoon in his mouth as far as Quirks go. He can use the nitroglycerin-like sweat from his hands to set off powerful explosions, which paired with his top notch physicality makes him a force to be reckoned with, even before you get to his nasty personality. Having been told all his life that's he's a talent among talents, Bakugo's got a titanic chip on his shoulder about any feelings of insecurity that surface in his mind, and he doesn't handle it well when he's not king of the hill. This bodes poorly for his stint at UA, when he's no longer the only big fish in the pond, culminating in a brutal fight with his former punching bag Izuku that he ultimately loses. Bakugo is nothing if not stubborn though, and he vows to prove that he has what it takes to become the #1 hero all by himself.
The rest of the characters are no slouches either. My Hero Academia features a huge cast of colorful classmates to accompany Izuku. Whether it's Uraraka's bubbly optimism, Ida's straitlaced dorkiness, or Tsuyu's deadpan bluntness, it's easy to pick a favorite in the class and root for them. While the first half of the series remains focused mostly on the central players, season 1 ultimately gave most of Class 1-A a brief chance to shine with their fight against the League of Villains.
Season's 1 back third revolves around a routine training field trip for Class 1-A being interrupted by a cadre of baddies who call themselves the League of Villains, led by the handsome yet creepy Tomura Shigaraki. Their plan to invade UA and execute All Might gives the class a firsthand look at the world of professional heroes in the most dangerous way possible. The kids all survive through a combination of quick thinking, luck, and the protection of their teachers who all take a pummeling in the process. All Might himself comes close to biting it in a showstopping bout with the League's taciturn behemoth Nomu, only surviving with the intervention of Izuku. The day is saved, but Shigaraki escapes to scheme another day – with a new target in mind.
Season 2 promises to bring even more adventures and excitement with the UA Sports Festival, pitting the students against each other and the rest of the school's first-years to show off their skills. Class 1-A has the advantage of real-life experience with honest-to-badness villains, but will that be enough to give them the edge against their peers? Well, you'll have to watch to unmask more exciting developments. What are you most looking forward to seeing from the return of My Hero Academia? Let us know in the forums!
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