Tag Archives: MANGA

HUMAN DEGENERATION

“Is it a virus?”

“We don’t know.”

“How does it spread? Is it airborne?”

“There is a possibility. We don’t know.”

“Is this an international health hazard or a military concern?”

“Both.”

Dawn of the Dead (2004)

I thought of adding an extra layer of chaos to the dinosaur apocalypse in my dinosaur series. In addition to dinosaurs and a mysterious pathogen, I am planning to include legions of man-eating humanoid mutants. These mutants will be a combination between the unused dinosaur/human hybrids of Jurassic Park lore, the fast-moving zombies from the 2004 version of Dawn of the Dead, and the relentless monsters from the South Korean Netflix show Sweet Home. I will not say how I plan to make the story work by including these mutants long with the dinosaurs and the pathogen, but I can say they are all connected to the same phenomenon.

A TWISTED WILDERNESS

“Well, they’re all so different. To look at them you wouldn’t say that they are the same species . . . but they’re growing from the same branch structure . . . so it has to be the same species. It’s the same plant! It’s like they’re stuck in a continuous mutation.”

Lena, Annihilation

Even though the reverse engineered dinosaurs are the main attraction in my dinosaur series, I also put a lot of thought into the plants as well. I wanted to create plants that were unnatural and otherworldly in appearance due to their manmade nature. With this in mind, I drew inspiration from the Toxic Jungle from Hayao Miyazaki’s Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. The Toxic Jungle looked alien in appearance, which gave it an unsettling yet eerily beautiful atmosphere. I wanted to give the plants and rainforests in my dinosaur series a similar structure.

MHA: RISE OF TOMURA SHIGARAKI

“A man can have anything if he is willing to sacrifice. With your birth comes a solemn vow: You will have nothing. Your privilege is the dirt. In the darkness, only ambition will guide you. The oath you swear, the promises you make, they are yours alone. Your freedom will be the wars you wage. Your birthright, the losses you suffer. Your entitlement, the pain you endure. And when darkness finds you, you will face it . . . alone!”

Sith Emperor Vitiate, Star Wars: The Old Republic

Even though Tomura Shigaraki is currently under the control of All For One’s vestige, I truly think he will break free in the near future. The reason for this is because Shigaraki openly said that he wanted to be an even greater supervillain than All For One ever was. I genuinely believe he can accomplish this. You only have to look a couple of story arcs back when the League of Villains battled the Meta Liberation Army. In that one battle, Shigaraki not only defeated the Meta Liberation Army, but he also took over it and all of its resources. This immense accomplishment was so significant that it greatly impressed All For One’s closest followers, Dr. Ujiko and Gigantomachia. Thanks to his victory, Shigaraki had gained a vast army of 100,000 soldiers, Sceptic’s ability to control the internet and the media, Re-Destro’s wealth and connections to industry, command over the formidable Gigantomachia, and access to Dr. Ujiko’s research and Nomu. It took All For One years to accumulate that much power and resources and yet Shigaraki was able to accomplish all of this in a single day. Shigaraki may have lost most of those resources during the Paranormal Liberation War, but I think he can accomplish the same feat again when he awakens at 100% stability. Shigaraki had accumulated so much power and influence and yet he never had a chance to fully utilize it, but I think he will get a second chance very soon. With hero society in ruins and Japan in chaos, the stage is set for Shigaraki to rebuild his power base. When he does and if he gains full control over the All For One quirk, Shigaraki will have a golden opportunity to truly reach his goal to surpass All For One as the world’s greatest supervillain.

MHA: SHIGARAKI COMPLETE

“And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him.”

Revelation, Chapter 6, Verse 8

The following contains spoilers from My Hero Academia. You have been warned.

During the Paranormal Liberation War, we got a taste of what Tomura Shigaraki’s new power would look like after his surgery from Doctor Ujiko. However, his surgery was incomplete at 75% and he has not yet reached his full potential. Even so, Shigaraki was still capable of holding his own against multiple superheroes and cause unimaginable death and destruction. If Shigaraki can do all of that in his incomplete state, imagine how much more dangerous he would be when he reaches 100% completion. As hinted by the High-End Nomus, Shigaraki may be able to stabilize on his without the aid of his capsule. It looks like this was confirmed by the vestiges of One For All. Based on what the vestiges say, the future is going to get a whole lot darker than they already are. It looks like if Shigaraki reaches 100%, he will essentially become the ultimate evil. I don’t know if this means that All For One’s vestige will completely take over Shigaraki’s body or if Shigaraki and All For One’s minds merge to form a new being. In any case, this proves that Shigaraki is about to become an even more sinister supervillain. In terms of power levels, the One For All vestiges claim that no one would be able to stop him if he reaches 100%. This could mean that even if Deku can master One For All in its entirety, it might not be enough to take Shigaraki down. It might take the combined strength of all the remaining superheroes to take Shigaraki down. The only reason Deku was able to thrash Shigaraki as much as he did was for three reasons: 1.) Shigaraki’s surgery was incomplete, 2.) Shigaraki was at war in his own mind, and 3.) Shigaraki did not know how to fully utilize his newfound power. When Shigaraki reaches 100%, none of these limitations will remain and it will be a whole new ball game. To make matters worse, Shigaraki has an army of at least ten thousand supervillains he sprung from prison. Overall, the worst is yet to come for hero society as Shigaraki sleeps and accumulates his strength. When he wakes up, it will be Armageddon.

MHA: DEKU WANTS TO SAVE SHIGARAKI

“Well, what are you waiting for? Kick the hell out of me and get your standing ovation.”

“No. Not this time. I don’t want to hurt you. I don’t want either of us to end up killing the other, but we’re running out of alternatives. Perhaps it all hinges on tonight. I don’t know what it was that bent your life out of shape, but maybe I’ve been there too. Maybe we can work together. I could rehabilitate you. You don’t need to be alone. We don’t have to kill each other. Let me help you.”

“I’m sorry, but no . . . No . . . It’s far too late for that.”

The Joker and Batman, Batman: The Killing Joke

The following contains spoilers from chapter 305 of My Hero Academia. You have been warned.

After being tested by the vestiges of One For All, Deku resolved to save Tomura Shigaraki from the influence of All For One. Even though Deku acknowledges that he might have to kill Shigaraki in the end, he has decided to only kill him as a last resort. Until then, Deku is determined to save his nemesis from himself.

While I have no doubt that Deku will manage to free Shigaraki from the vestige of All For One, I seriously doubt that Deku will be able to turn Shigaraki away from the dark side. Deku might be able to liberate Shigaraki from his mentor’s influence, but I am certain Shigaraki will continue their grudge match. Shigaraki is so completely broken that he is too far gone to be redeemed. His hatred toward hero society is absolute. Even if Shigaraki is saved, it won’t change anything between him and Deku.

Due to this, Deku might be able to get rid of the All For One vestige, but he will have to deal with a potentially greater supervillain. Shigaraki stated that he wanted to be an even greater supervillain than All For One ever was. Without the vestige of his master holding him back, he will be able to use his full power without any further distraction. I am pretty sure that Shigaraki will hunt down the original All For One and kill him. Only one of them can be the demon king of the underworld.

I look forward to seeing how the story develops fin the future.

MHA: DEKU’S CURRENT STRENGTH

You will give the people of Earth an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you, they will stumble, they will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders.

Jor-El, Man of Steel

The following contains spoilers from My Hero Academia. You have been warned.

Since the series began, Deku’s usage of One For All and prowess as a superhero has gradually increased. As the final wielder of One For All, Deku is destined to be far more powerful than All Might ever was. Deku did say that the series was the story of how he became the world’s greatest superhero. Based on what we have seen so far, Deku is well on his way to reaching that title. Here is a detailed list of what he can do so far.

We shall begin with the basic power of One For All, which is essentially an energy aura that explosively augments Deku’s speed, strength, stamina, and durability. When he first used this energy aura, Deku would unleash One For All’s full power through a single body part such as an arm or leg, which frequently caused him to injure himself. Fortunately, Deku was able to overcome this limitation by spreading the energy aura evenly throughout his body, resulting in the creation of a technique known as Full Cowl.

Once Deku invented Full Cowl, he was able to learn how to use One For All’s power in percentages. At first, the percentages were small and slowly grew. For the moment, Deku can safely use 30% of One For All without injuring himself and can summon 45% in short bursts. As time goes on, Deku will continue to learnt to wield large percentages of his power, which will inevitably lead him to be able to safely use 100% like All Might did.

We now move on to the six quirks that have been dormant in One For All. These quirks were the result of the quirk factors of the previous users becoming fused to One For All. Because of One For All’s power stockpiling nature, these quirks have become so much stronger than they were originally. Compared to All For One, One For All has a quality over quantity policy regarding its additional quirks. One For All’s additional quirks may be fewer in number than All For One’s, but they are individually much more powerful.

Deku has shown a tendency to fire air pressure bullets by flicking his enhanced fingers. At first, Deku would injure himself when he used this capability. However, when Deku mastered 20% of One For All and acquired a set of specialized gauntlets he was able to safely summon air pressure bullets without harming himself. This gives Deku a ranged attack, which he will need in his future fights with Shigaraki.

The first dormant quirk that Deku unlocked was called Blackwhip, which allows him to generate black energy whips. These energy whips grant Deku greater mobility and allow him to grapple and immobilize targets. Blackwhip operates in a similar fashion to Spider-Man’s webbing.

The second dormant quirk is called Float, which allows him to levitate himself and others off the ground. In addition, Float gives Deku an advantage during mid-air combat, which was demonstrated by his first fight with Tomura Shigaraki. The full extent of this quirk’s augmented capabilities is currently unknown. If he fully masters it, Deku might be capable of supersonic flight like Superman or telekinesis such as Jean Grey.

The third dormant quirk is called Danger Sense, which allows Deku to detect nearby threats. Since Deku has just got Danger Sense, he has no training or experience in how to use it. Because of its augmented state, it has the potential of giving Deku sensory overload if he does not get the quirk under control. I suspect that when Deku masters Danger Sense, he will become untouchable because he would be able to sense and counter immediate threats with absolute precision. Deku knows how to punch, kick, and take a beating. It is overdue for him to learn how to dodge. Danger Sense is similar to Spider-Man’s Spider Sense power.

Deku has three more quirks that are waiting to be unlocked. Each one is so much stronger than they were in the past. Awakening these quirks is one thing, but mastering them is another. As powerful as Deku is now, he still has a long way to go before he reaches his full potential. I cannot wait to see him in his prime in later chapters.

MHA: DEKU’S NEW SUIT

“I need a new suit.”

“Yeah, three buttons is a little ’90’s, Mr. Wayne.”

“I’m not talking fashion, Mr. Fox, so much as function.”

“You want to be able to turn your head.”

“Sure would make backing out of the driveway easier.”

Bruce Wayne and Lucius Fox, The Dark Knight

Since the start of the series, Deku’s superhero uniform has undergone several changes and upgrades. However, even though he constantly receives upgrades, Deku always manages to damage his costume. This is due to the fact that Deku’s usage of One For All keep growing and evolving so fast that his armorers cannot keep up. Recently, Deku’s costume was once again damaged while he was fighting Tomura Shigaraki. Due to this, Deku’s costume is currently not durable enough to withstand his full usage of One For All. Deku has awakened three dormant quirks with another three waiting to be unlocked. Until Deku masters 100% of One For All base power and the other six quirks, his armorers will not know what specifications his new suit will need in order to not only to meet his specific needs but also last after more than one battle. Above are some concept art for potential new suits Deku might receive in future chapters. I look forward to seeing what his new uniform will look like after the recent repairs are done.

MHA: THE TRUE NATURE OF ONE FOR ALL

“The quest stands upon the edge of a knife. Stray but a little, and it will fail, to the ruin of all.”

Galadriel, The Fellowship of the Ring

The following contains spoilers from chapter 304 of My Hero Academia. You have been warned.

The latest chapter has confirmed one of the greatest suspicions. It looks like Deku really is the final wielder of One For All. This was confirmed when Deku had a meeting with the vestiges of the previous wielders of One For All. During this meeting, we got to understand the true nature of One For All and why the previous wielders died young.

As stated by the fourth wielder, One For All is ill-suited for someone who already has a preexisting quirk. The reason for this is because One For All tends to burn away the life-force of a wielder who already has a quirk. This causes a sense of overload in the wielder’s body and causes them to age at an accelerated rate. This was the case with the fourth wielder, who died prematurely at the age of 40. Because of this life-draining side effect, the previous wielders of One For All could not use the quirk’s full power.

However, All Might was the only wielder who could use the full power because he was originally quirkless. A quirkless person is a blank slate with no preexisting quirk to hold them back. This makes them immune to the life-draining side effects of the quirk and use One For All as though it were their own natural quirk. This was why All Might was able to wield One For All for 40 years and become as powerful as he was.

Deku is in the exact same situation as All Might because he was originally quirkless as well. The fact that Deku is manifesting the quirks of the previous wielders is not just because of the stockpiling nature of One For All. It is a sign that One For All cannot be transferred anymore. Also, with so many people possessing quirks, quirkless people are becoming a rarity with each year that passes. Since only quirkless people can truly access One For All’s true power, the possibility of Deku finding a quirkless successor is becoming increasingly non-existent. This is another reason why the quirk cannot be passed on anymore.

Overall my theory of Deku being the final wielder of One For All has been confirmed. That makes him One For All’s last chance to bring down All For One once and for all. If Deku falls, any chance of stopping All For One/Tomura Shigaraki will be lost.

MHA: THE GLOBAL STAGE

“It is the greatest achievement of a teacher to enable his students to surpass him.”

John Kemeny

The following contains spoilers from chapter 303 of My Hero Academia. You have been warned.

Thanks to Hawks, we now have a better idea of the situation with hero society’s current condition. The total number of inmates All For One/Tomura Shigaraki released from the prisons was ten thousand strong, which is about one tenth the size of the full strength of the Paranormal Liberation Front. Even so, these inmates have made the situation more desperate than ever. With so many superheroes resigning all at once, the superheroes do not have the numbers to quell the inmates.

Due to Japan’s hero society all but gone, the Japanese government has started taking drastic action to bring the situation under control. In order to make up the superhero shortage, the Japanese government has made requests from other countries to lend them their superheroes. So, foreign superheroes are now entering the story. This is a serious game changer to the My Hero Academia plot.

Up until now, the majority of the anime/manga’s story has taken place in Japan. The only time foreign superheroes appeared were either the films or the spin-off series. Now, these foreign superheroes are entering the main storyline. Apart from giving Japan’s hero society much needed reinforcements, this is going to have some serious political changes to the My Hero Academia universe and how the global hero society will handle situations such as these.

Sadly, there is a serious drawback to requesting these reinforcements. With the Hero Public Safety Commission dismantled, the Japanese government cannot complete the necessary paperwork. This will stall the deployment of these foreign superheroes, but they will eventually come.

This is a significant development in both Tomura Shigaraki and Deku’s character arcs. At the beginning of My Hero Academia, Deku said that the anime/manga was about how he became the world’s greatest superhero. After the Tartarus Prison breakout, All For One/Tomura Shigaraki said this was the story about how he becomes the greatest demon lord. Now that superheroes from around the world are entering the fray, the global spotlight will be on both of them.

Let us go over what this could mean for Shigaraki. Shigaraki has stated that his greatest desire was to destroy hero society. He certainly has achieved that goal with Japan, but destroying hero society in a single country accomplishes nothing. Before the vestige of All For One possessed him, Shigaraki said he wanted to be an even greater supervillain than All For One ever was. All For One was the greatest supervillain in Japan, but not the world at large. If Shigaraki is serious about wanting to surpass his master, he will need to destroy hero society either in multiple countries or the entire world. Now that other countries are getting involved in the aftermath of the Paranormal Liberation War, Shigaraki definitely has a golden opportunity to become greater than his master. This would give him a worldwide reputation as a supervillain.

With Deku, he also has a chance to surpass All Might and become a greater superhero than him. As far as we know, All Might has a well-established reputation as a great superhero in Japan and made appearances in the United States in his early career. However, All Might was not able to establish a reputation on a global scale. With the eyes of the world fixed on Japan, Deku has all the exposure he will need to prove that he can be a greater superhero than All Might ever was. Sadly, all of this is only possible if Deku can recover from his injuries and we don’t know how or when he will do that.

Overall, the presence of foreign superheroes entering the fray is the perfect opportunity for both Deku and Shigaraki to prove that they can be greater than their mentors. Only time will tell when they recover and awaken. When they do awake, the world will never be the same again.

KENSHIN’S COMEUPPANCE

Even though the anime/manga Rurouni Kenshin is a widely popular story, I did not like the final story arc. Kenshin has fought many detestable villains throughout the story, but there is one that I actually sympathize with and rooted for. That villain was Kenshin’s vengeful ex-brother-in-law Enishi Yukishiro. When Enishi was a child, his sister married Kenshin and was accidentally murdered by Kenshin some time after. Enishi’s sister was his only form of familial attachment and the closest thing to a mother he ever had. Robbed of his sister, Enishi was forced to survive on his own. He had to drink from puddles to stay hydrated and feasted on carcasses in the street to fight off starvation.

At one point, Enishi was saved by a wealthy family, but since his only familial connection was dead and Enishi had lived like an animal for a while, he had no connection to the family who saved him. Therefore, he killed them and stole their wealth as well as discovered a book about a sword style that rivaled Kenshin’s Hiten-Mitsurugi Style: Watojutsu. Lacking a teacher, Enishi taught himself Watojutsu, using the book as a reference. With the dead family’s wealth, Enishi found his way into the Shanghai mafia, eventually becoming the head honcho.

Ten years later, armed with his completed training in Watojutsu and the resources of the Shanghai mafia at his disposal, Enishi was ready to commence his revenge on Kenshin. Enishi recruited other individuals who were wronged by Kenshin and they helped him in a campaign of vengeance against Kenshin and everyone close to him. Eventually, Enishi fought Kenshin for the first time, besting his ultimate technique. Enishi acquired his revenge by faking the death of Kenshin’s beloved, Kaoru Kamiya, by replacing her with a flesh doll in her likeness. Mad with grief, Kenshin entered a catatonic state in a village full of criminals and outcasts while Kaoru was kept prisoner by Enishi. Enishi intended to return Kaoru home as soon as Kenshin died of grief and Enishi’s revenge would be complete.

However, Enishi’s revenge came undone when Kaoru’s friends discovered she was alive and Kenshin woke up from his stupor. Upon learning this, Enishi made up his mind in killing Kenshin instead of making him mentally suffer. Enishi would fight Kenshin again and would lose despite having the upper hand early in their duel. Enishi would end up in the same village that Kenshin was in when he was catatonic.

Overall, out of all the enemies Kenshin faced, Enishi was the one who deserved to win against him the most. Even if it was accidental, Kenshin still murdered Enishi’s sister and forced Enishi to live through a hellish existence. Sure, Enishi may have blood on his hands and his actions as the head of the Shanghai mafia exacerbated it. However, due to his past as a mass-murdering assassin, Kenshin had a lot more blood on his hands than Enishi and his contributions to the formation of the Meiji government indirectly led to a much higher body count. Enishi would have his own comeuppance in due time, but Kenshin was the one being judged in this story arc. Some may say it was not necessary for Enishi to drag those closest to Kenshin in their grudge match, but I disagree. Enishi did not bring Kenshin’s friends into this, Kenshin himself did the day he came into their lives. Kenshin did terrible and unforgivable things while he was an assassin and did he really think there were not going to be consequences for his crimes? When you have wronged as many people as Kenshin has during the Bakumatsu, sooner or later, those individuals will inevitably come seeking retribution. When that happens, any friends Kenshin made would be caught in the crossfire. Kenshin can live in a fairy tale and believe that protecting the innocent and giving up killing would make his sins magically disappear, but all evil deeds stink. You can forget them for a while, but they don’t go away. Based on all of this, Enishi deserved his revenge against Kenshin and it would have been better for the story if Kenshin did not have a happy ending. People with a past as checkered as Kenshin’s don’t deserve a happy ending. It would have been preferable that Kenshin either stayed catatonic or died by Enishi’s hand. It would have been an ideal way for the consequences of Kenshin’s sins to come full circle.