Review: My Hero Academia Ep. 38 – Encounter

An innocent shopping trip turns into terrifying encounter for Midoriya when he comes face-to-face with Shigaraki.

 

Shigaraki is having trouble accepting new members Himiko Toga and Dabi into the League of Villains since they joined due to Stain’s influence. Because Shigaraki doesn’t really have an ideology behind what he does, it only serves to infuriate him that Stain is hogging the spotlight even when he is prison. When all three attempt to start a fight, Kurogiri stops them using his quirk “Warp Gate” to make appear in another part of the room. He tells Shigaraki that they can not refuse their help and they could valuable assets to their cause. After Shigaraki storms hideout, Kurogiri asks the Broker who brought Toga and Dabi to wait a week, stating that Shigaraki will know what needs to be done.

Meanwhile with final exams completed and discovering that everyone in the class will be going the summer trip Midoriya and his classmates decide to go to mall to shop for items they need for said trip. When they arrive at the mall, people recognize them from the Sport Festival and Uraraka expresses surprise that people still remember that. They all decide to split up and meet back at 3 PM with Midoriya ending by himself because of Uraraka being embarrassed over Aoyama’s observation about her crush on Midoriya. It was not long after that a young man walks over to Midoriya and puts his arm around him while chatting about recognizing him from the Sports Festival and the Hero Killer incident. It is only when he puts all but one finger on his throat and states that from his perspective the last time they met was during the attack on the USJ that Midoriya realizes he standing next to Tomura Shigaraki.

With the threat that he would harm the other shoppers in the mall, Midoriya agrees to talk with him. It is in their conversation that Shigaraki tries to decipher what’s the difference between him and Stain. After he asks Midoriya’s opinion, the young hero replies that while he does not agree with his actions, he can at least understand his intention for a more just society and that it all began with All Might’s example.

It is at this point that Shigaraki laughs and gives the creepiest nightmare-inducing smile ever as he comes to the realization that the reason for his anger towards Stain and Midoriya is because of All Might who he disdains with a passion. Thankfully, Uraraka comes back and Shigaraki releases his grip on Midoriya, but warns him not to follow him. A search and investigation came soon after, but Shigaraki was long gone.

I had been waiting to see how the anime would portray this point in the story when I first read it in the manga and it did not disappoint. The interaction between Shigaraki and Midoriya is handled well and they depicted the scenes from the manga very well. One addition that only served to increase the tension was Shigaraki’s movement of his free finger as he explains to Midoriya that he would disintegrate the moment all five digits his fingers touch his throat. What this episode lacked in action, it made up for in drama and this easily in my top 10 episodes for the season. A great conclusion for season 2, leaving the audience (including me) anxious to what happen in season 3. Thanks joining me for these reviews and I will see you next season. Until then, go beyond… PLUS ULTRA!

 

Rating:

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