The superhero genre is a very prevailing one considering the amount of live action superhero movies coming out every year. It is certainly a genre that gains more and more in popularity and manages to attract new audiences both young and old. However, when it comes to animation that is where it seems to lack the most at least on the western end of thing. While yes some are being made like those direct to DVD DC animated films, Teen Titans Vs The Justice League as an example. For the most part they are not as common as the live action adaptations. However, when it comes to Japan it seems the superhero animated genre is popping up more and more. With last years One Punch Man which is a parody of the genre, this year My Hero Academia seems to be the standard superhero tale. The story follows Izuku Midoriya who wants to follow in the footsteps of the hero he admires the most All Might. He also wants to attend UA a superhero academy that teaches students on being a hero. The problem is Izuku does not have any powers or “quirks” as they are called in the show. However, after a fateful encounter with All Might he may become the hero he always wanted to be.
Of course there is more to the story but as for right now season one only adapted a small portion of the manga it was based on. Thankfully, a second season has been green lit and whenever it does come out then hopefully more of the story is expanded upon. Yes as of right now the manga is incomplete and the plot of season one does not really have that many big threats to it. The tale being told currently is the origin of Izuku’s own strength and potential as a hero. Which for what it is worth is a good way to start the series it puts a good grasp on who the character is and manages to make the audience root for him in the end. A greater threat does come at the very end of the series, but it comes off more as a hint of what’s to come in the future rather than expanding upon Izuku’s character. Unfortunately, the biggest struggle with My Hero Academia is that it is slow and does not feel like much was made in progress.
This show could have been another continuous long running shonen series, but considering not enough material has been written yet and that Studio Bones are the ones animating the adaptation, I knew there would not be hundreds of episodes to this series. The show is slow and constantly moves at a slow pace it is more concerned on following the manga and makes sure that it is as close as possible to the original source material. Still it is not a painful slog to get through and it certainly can be fun to marathon through episode to episode until the finale. It just is not as fast as other short shonen anime that are in the same category as My Hero Academia like Food Wars, Arslan, or the earlier mentioned One Punch Man. Still the one thing that caught my attention the most was the animation. While it is certainly not the best I have seen from Studio Bones it still is high quality. The color palette makes it look very comic book esque, the animation is smooth and fluid while the fighting scenes are great fun to watch. Sometimes the quality and proportions can be off at times. However, it isn’t incredibly distracting to take away from what the rest of the series does right.
As for the dub and OST the dub casting choices while are safe, such as Chris Sabat as All Might and most of the people in it are funimation regulars (Luci Christian, Monica Rial, Joel Mcdonald) I do think the dub is one of my favorite broadcast dubs from them since Blood Blockade Battlefront. The standout to me is Justin Briner as Izuku he does a great job. He nails how timid he is but manages to bring such a nice amount of determination in his voice whenever Midoriya manages to understand himself as a hero. Other notable roles Luci Christian as Ochako Uraraka and Chris Sabat as All Might both do a great job and manage to bring a lot of weight to their performance. As for the soundtrack unfortunately that is where things falter. For the most part it is a combination of rap and the most generic hero music ever and it is a completely forgettable soundtrack. It gets the job done but it never got me pumped up and felt like it could have been a lot better.
In conclusion, the first season of My Hero Academia is good. Not great or amazing just good it has a lot of potential to be those things and as for right now is showing a lot of promise. Still with its slow pace it might be tough to sway people to give it a try. Still it is an enjoyable series and I am anticipating what comes next.
Final Verdict: 7.5/10