Yes, I'm back in addressing My Hero Academia again, but this time it's a review of the complete first season. I've had the pleasure of finishing it, fall of 2016, and enjoyed it, but I'll get into that in the actual review.
Let's start with the summary. My Hero Academia or "Boku No Hero Academia" is a story about a boy named Izuku Midoriya who aspires to be a hero, but he was born without superpowers. All of that changed when he finally got to meet his hero All Might. After Midoriya rescued his bully Katsuki Bakugo from a slime powered villain, All Might deemed Midoriya worthy of his quirk, and proceeded to train him. After Midoriya's training, he attended U.A. and got in after acquiring Sixty Rescue point from rescuing his future classmate Ochako Uraraka. From there during practice rescue routine, Izuku's class are attacked by a league of villains, before All Might comes in and saves the day.
How I felt about the first five episodes
Let's start with a brief overview of episodes one through five, as I enjoyed them. The first episode while I felt was heavy handed with the plight of the protagonist Izuku Midoriya, I enjoyed how the heroes are established and how they worked with the world around them. The second episode, I like how we had to learn more about All Might as a character. I liked how Midoriya had to train to receive One For All in Episode 3. I especially enjoyed how after acquiring One-For-All, Midoriya didn't have full mastery of it by the later episodes, even in the season 1 finale. Episode 4 I enjoyed showcased the variety of quirks from the future UA students, and again the showcasing of Deku's lack of control. I also enjoyed how he leaped into action to save Uraraka. Personal nitpick was Izuku's lack on confidence irked me, but I get it as getting superpowers is not an immediate confidence boost. Episode 5 had Midoriya, and students test the limits of their quirks, as Midoriya surpasses Bakugo in the throwing test, but fail the rests. And it turned out Aizawa decided to not expel any of the under performing students...
Thoughts on the latter eight episodes...
Episode 6 placed the students in teams of two and pit them against each in a practice mission. I enjoyed the set up of Bakugo and Midoriya's fight as we got to see some more of Bakugo's layers of why he resents Midoriya.
Episode 7 continued where the previous episode left off, as Bakugo and Midoriya engaged each other. I enjoyed Midoriya's efforts to hold his own against Bakugo, but the stand out for me was Iida pretending to be a villain as he hammed it up. I also thought Ochako was cute too even if her batting he debris at the missile was reckless.
Episode 8 acted as the aftermath for Bakugo and Midoriya's match. As the two watched the rest of the matches, as Bakugo's ego was chipped away at the other quirks and Momo's criticisms of his actions. Not even All Might's kind words could lift Bakugo's spirits. Thinking back, Bakugo was he real focus of this episode. If he had not earned my ire from the first episode, I would have looked forward to seeing how he'd overcome his shortcomings.
Episode 9 saw Midoriya being chosen to be class rep. Midoriya insisted Iida be class rep. Iida earned by calming down panicked students during a false alarm. The episode ends with Shigaraki attacks Midoriya and the UA students during a rescue exercise. Shigaraki's intent being to kill All-Might. I enjoyed Iida's sense responsibility and charisma. I also enjoyed the sense of suspense and dread when the villains showed up.
Episode 10 had the villain scattered as they fought the UA students in different environments in the course. During this Asui, Mineta, and the other students to showcase their skills. During this chaos Iida was tasked to get help from Pro Heroes. I enjoyed Asui's capabilities, as well as how the other students held their own against the villains. Admittedly I didn't like how nonthreatening the villains were but that was the idea...
Episode 11 saw Iida succeeding in calling for help, as Aizawa joined the fray and managed to turn the tides. This is until Shigaraki summoned Nomu that dominated Aizawa, before All-Might saved him. Seizing the opportunity, Shigaraki sicked Nomu on All-Might. I sadly liked all the heroic cliche at play in his episode of the big hero making the save from overwhelming odds. Mainly because My Hero Academia gave us reason to care about these characters, so All-Might showed up it was an uplifting relief.
Episode 12 had All-Might fight Nomu, as Nomu absorbs his attacks. When All-Might is pushed to his limits, All-Might ejected Nomu from the facility. I liked the threat Nomu posed, I liked how it'd take more than Nomu's capabilities to take down All-Might.
Episde 13 Agitated, Shigaraki attacked All-Might, before he warded off by the pro-heroes that answered Iida's call. Outnumbered and outmatched, Shigaraki retreated, as the heroes and students licked their wounds and regrouped. However, while the day maybe won, Shigaraki met up with his master to discuss future plans to defeat All-Might. I liked how this was all the cal before the storm. You got to relax and enjoy the reprieve, before learning that another scheme was afoot, adding hype for season 2.
I feel the negatives are subjective, but regardless, they are the follows:"The pacing is slow, and may drag for some. Midoriya is lacking in terms of interesting traits. And some may see this series as lacking in depth."
I personally disagree with these, but that's what makes them subjective.
My negatives are as follows:"I felt that Mioriya's origin of being a quirkless toddler was a tad heavy-handed. But that's because I've seen this origin several times. I would've liked to get a stronger impression of Class 1-A given their importance later, but that's me projecting an opinion based on what I've seen from others.
The positives for me start with the cast. I think Midoriya, Bakugo, Ochako, and Asui are interesting characters along with the rest of class 1-A. I also enjoyed the action and how sparse it was. But that's due to the fact that this a Marvel/DC Comics story with Japanese battle shonen elements, which helps set it apart from the crowd. That being said I like how All-Might is a blend of Superman and Captain America, and how underneath that heroic image lies a regular guy.
Also the season left on a cliff hanger that left me excited for more which was nice.
Honestly while some shonen fans and comic book fans may like this, because of the fact that My Hero Academa/Boku No Hero Academia isn't for everyone.
But me personally, while it had a bumpy start, I enjoyed My Hero Academia Season 1, and was looking forward to season 2 after season's conclusion. As a result, it gets an A- from me.