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My Hero Academia Season 7
Episode 144

by Nicholas Dupree,

How would you rate episode 144 of
My Hero Academia (TV 7) ?
Community score: 4.1

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To borrow the words of John “Hannibal” Smith, I love it when a plan comes together. While MHA's bread and butter has always been its character drama, sometimes it manages to skate by on the sheer momentum of everything that's going on in an episode, as is the case here. There are a couple of significant character beats in “Division”, but more than anything, the draw is just watching the heroes' plan come together, and setting up our match-ups for the battles to come. It's the kind of thing the entire Ocean's film franchise is built on, just with more flamboyant costumes.

Outside of being cool, Aizawa's plan shows how much the balance of power has shifted since the last big battle. Before, the heroes could rely on a simple, straightforward plan of attack. There were smaller strategies within that plan, like Hawks targeting Twice in particular, but the heroes clearly had the advantage out of the gate—and things only went south through sheer bad luck. Here, everything feels like it's on a razor's edge. Even with their forces divided, the villains pose a huge threat and our remaining heroes have rationed their best fighters to key areas in the hopes that it will be enough for victory. An entire flying fortress had to be built to keep Y'all For One contained, let alone beat him. The good guys are throwing every last resource they have into this and that means any screw-ups or unexpected situations—like Deku getting dragged to a remote island miles away from where he should have been—could send it all toppling over. That's some sharp tension.

It also means MHA can avoid a problem it's had in the past with one-on-one battles leaving the extended cast out in the cold. When everyone is giving it their all, including non-combat roles, folks like Momo and Kaminari can contribute and make their presence known even though they have zero chance of taking out the big bad. Even tertiary characters who haven't been seen in ages get to play vital roles in making this go down. It's great to see Shinso pop back up to kick the whole thing off, allowing a character who was once maligned as having a “villainous” quirk, and who long thought that he couldn't be a hero, to contribute in a way only he could. It's one of those cool little spotlight moments I love to see in Shonen stories.

I have to give that smug little puke Monoma his flowers. Not only has he taken up Aizawa's place sitting on top of the “Nerf Shigaraki” button but he's also pivotal in making this whole divide and conquer strategy possible. I still wouldn't trust the prick if he told me the sky was blue but he's at least proven useful enough to almost balance out his stupid face and personality. However, I laughed at his repeating “pulling the strings” line. You can tell it was the only thing he came up with ahead of time and he blanked on any other cool lines. Some people just aren't ready for prime time.

Outside of that, this is a simple and effective first move in our final battle. The stages are set, the stakes are as high as they've ever been, and now we wait to see how this shakes out for all involved.

Rating:

My Hero Academia is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.


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