Can we talk about how Gran Torino is just Yoda? Seriously, think about it for a second! He’s a powerful old man who pretends to be a senile maniac, he’s super small, and he’s the mentor of the mentor character. It’s only through his training that the main hero can finally learn how to properly use his powers.
I’m sure it’s not by accident, either. Horikoshi-sensei has proved himself to be a major Star Wars fan numerous times in the past.
That aside, this episode is one of the more solid table-setters in the series. It puts all the characters in place for the coming battle, it’s well paced and entertaining, and it even has some strong character moments on it’s own. In order to keep everything well paced, it even splices in brief scenes of the other characters and their adventures in their internships.
These particular scenes are my favorite. Bakugo being scolded by Best Jeanist is both cathartic and highly entertaining. Kirishima and Tetsutetsu being bros at their internship is a ton of fun and puts an immediate smile on my face. Uraraka training with Gunhead is easily my favorite, as it plants the seed for what I like to call: “Kick-ass Ochako”. Though Yaorozu’s takes a close second, as it’s a very fun gag that plays extremely well into her character arc for the season.
Though Jiro’s and Mineta’s are quite hilarious as well… Shit, this is harder than I thought.
We also get to a small insight into the training of All Might. It’s incredibly brief and serves more as a comedic set piece, but it’s still nice. It also gives us the first seeds as to All Might’s predecessor, which would later be paid off in season three.
But the real set piece of this episode comes at the end. Our first major protagonist transformation: Full Cowl. This sets the precedent for how My Hero powers up its characters. Rather than giving them new transformations out of the blue (cough cough Ressurection F Arc), characters need to rethink their powers in order to gain further abilities. Deku doesn’t pull a miraculous new form out of his ass; he completely rethinks how One For All works, how to use it, and applies it in a new way. This is far more interesting, as well as grounded, than the traditional Shounen flare. Though we still don’t get to see it in action until next week.
But we do get the Fantasy-AU ED. This is easily my favorite ending sequence the show has ever had, and probably one of my favorite in all of anime. If I can’t get a spin-off where all the kids are just being kids with their super powers, then I’ll gladly take a fantasy show!
I’ll take anything My Hero, really. In case I haven’t made it obvious in the past year, I really fucking love this show.
This is a very solid episode. I don’t think it’s the best by any means, but it’s far from the worst. It’s cute, it’s fun, and it sets the stage for one of my favorite arcs of the entire series.
Now that will be something special. But we’ll get to that next week.