Episode 77: Bright Future
Have you ever heard how hard it is to write concisely? Back in our collaboration review of episode 70, Irina from I Drink and Watch Anime said she wanted to “keep my episode reviews a bit more concise because they were getting way out of control.” Now, on one hand I’d argue that her reviews were not only just fine, they’re among my favorites! But brevity can have its own charm. The quote is variously attributed, but the long and short of it is that I would have written a shorter review, but I didn’t have time. I am going to be a more supportive collaborator, so starting with this review, I’m going to try to up my game, too.
So, welcome to our review of My Hero Academia Season 4, episode 77, “Bright Future.” It’s an episode about endings. It’s an episode about consequences. And let me tell you, karma can be absolutely ruthless.
Irina, any opening remarks (in bold, as it should)?
I tried to mention it last week, My Hero Academia is trying something new. Maybe it’s even growing up a little. It takes guts to shelve fan favourite characters at the height of their popularity. To shake up a school theme narrative by throwing it into a drawn out chase caper. I know some fans have been grumbling but I admired the series for trying to grow. I just really didn’t think we were here yet and I must admit, I wasn’t ready.
Oh, there will be spoilers! So be cautious.
Episode 78: Smoldering Flames
So how do you follow up an episode like Bright Future? An unenviable task for sure. Last week’s My Hero Academia rocked me and essentially recontextualized the entire season for me. Potentially the entire series. It’s a much harsher and more uncompromising world that greets me this week, but also more empathic. One with real stakes and true loss. It’s no longer about plot holes or quirk potential. The story moved beyond its trappings but now it has to find its place and itself once more.
If I have had one complaint about season 4, it’s that the pacing is a bit off. Oh. hey Crow! How are you this week? We’re going to talk about episode 78 of My Hero Academia. There will be spoilers, but there’s really nothing to spoil this week. I guess that’s kind of a spoiler in itself. Ooops. Also, Crow is in bold!
Hey, Irina! Nice summary of the impact this arc has had. It forced some self-reflection — why was I watching MHA? Do the changes you described have an impact? I think they do. It sorta reminds me of the feeling I had watching my own kids grow up. It’s the difference in stakes between “Dad, I didn’t chosen as lead for the school play” and “Dad, the rental office won’t release my paperwork for the home loan!”
As you can guess, I think I’m cool with the changes.
And very happy my kids won’t have to face Overhaul.
Episode 79: Win Those Kids’ Hearts!
In the intro to our review of the previous episode, Irina spoke of the re-contextualization the series has undergone in the last several episodes (particularly episode 77). Those words loomed large over this episode, “Win Those Kids’ Hearts” (episode 79). In fact, it drove at least half of the episode — and it managed to cast a deepening shadow over the series as a whole. Despite the upbeat OP, I think we’re in for some rough sailing. There may be spoilers, so be careful!
Hi, Irina! You’re in bold this week, which is, as I’ve said before, as it should be! Any opening thoughts before we dive in?
Actually, I haven’t read ahead so I’m really curious to see where you’re going with this. I think I have an idea but we’ll see if I’m right. Either way Crow, great opening paragraph. You sure got my attention!
Episode 80: Relief for License Trainees
We got somewhat buried in snow over the last few days. Actually, it’s not that impressive. It’s really a perfectly average amount of snow for February in Quebec and far from the huge snow storm they’ve been promising. In fact, it’s been sort of light on snow this year. In any case, it’s now a bright and sunny day and the gleaming, undisturbed white snow is reflecting everything so the glare coming through the window is crazy. You know that particular quality of sunlight off snow. It’s super sunny and cheerful and you can just tell it’s freezing outside. It’s a good day to stay indoors and watch anime. And this was a great episode for the occasion I might add. Before we get into it, how are you Crow?
Also, just so I don’t make him do it every time. This is a discussion of episode 80 of My Hero Academia. There will be some spoilers so if you haven’t seen it, you might want to do that first. Also, I will be taking plain text this week while Crow is in bold!
I’m doing well, Irina. Thanks for asking! We just got a little snow here, too, but no sun. So it’s just gray outside. Weird snow, too — didn’t stick to the streets or sidewalks, but buried our cars. Well, my car. My wife’s car is in the garage.
Episode 81: School Festival
Welcome to the weekly collaboration review of My Hero Academia season 4 with Irina from I Drink and Watch Anime and me. MHA seems to have settled into a comfortable pattern in episode 81, “School Festival.” We get two mini-episodes for the price of one (with some foreboding scenes near the end). We also got to see the kind of character building that can only come from a long-running series like this one.
How are you this week, Irina? We had a bit of a cold snap the last couple of days (got down to around -10 Celsius). Reminded me of how much I don’t like winter!
We haven’t been above 0 Celsius for a while and I love winter. Granted I live in a warm house with central heating. Still everything is white and lovely and there are few things better in life than to be warm and safe during a snowstorm evening and watching anime.
Since the end of the first arc, MHA has been splitting its episode more or less in two and I don’t hate it. It sets up a different rhythm that works for weekly viewings in my opinion.
Episode 82: Prepping for the School Festival Is the Funnest Part
It’s cold right now in Montreal and people are freaking out. As if there was anything special about February in Montreal being cold… We do that every single year. Montrealers that is. Every year we get surprised that Canada gets cold in the winter and there’s snow. And in the summer we’re whining about how hot and humid it is. Montrealers have weather blindness. And I kind of like that about us.
Also, I’ve noticed that I start my collabs with Crow with these little elevator conversations. Not sure why. I don’t do that for any of my other collabs or posts in general. Maybe it’s because Crow is always so polite that I feel compelled to ease us into things. Not sure it’s working… How are you Crow??
I’m fine! I’m riding the Ohio February temperature roller coaster. Completely normal, but like Montrealers, Ohioians completely forget weather year to year.
Actually, I thought I was following your lead in opening with the elevator chat (sans elevator, of course!). So if you prefer to dive right in, I can take it!
For the record (as if anyone couldn’t tell at a glance who’s who!) I’m bold.
Episode 83: Gold Tips Imperial
Welcome to another collaboration review of My Hero Academia season 4 from Irina from I Drink and Watch Anime and me! It’s my turn to host this week. That means I’m in plain text and Irina will be in bold. And there may be spoilers.
The story moved forward on three fronts this week: school festival, the continued (really drawn out) passing of the baton, and the external threat. Of course, as promised at the end of the previous episode, Eri figured prominently, though one of our heroes had to suffer through several misunderstandings that I’m still not sure how to think about.
How was your week, Irina? Any thoughts about episode 83, “Gold Tips Imperial,” before we get this show on the road?
I really like tea so I was psyched to see some tea product placement!
Honesty, it made me think a lot of the “commoner’s coffee” seen in Ouran High School Host Club. As that remains one of my favorite anime gags, I was predisposed to enjoying this running bit and I did. From what I saw in the after credits scene, it seems the bit will be upheld in the next episode as well. That makes me happy.
It’s a weird thing to be happy about, but I like this sort of lightly winky writing. Certainly a huge departure from the first half of the season.
Episode 84: Deku vs. Gentle Criminal
You know how it’s smart post writing to sort of keep the punchline of your post until the latter half? Or you know, until at least the second paragraph so people can’t just know your entire thoughts from the little snippets in search engines or in reader and have to click on your actual post to find out? It’s sort of elementary good post writing basics. Anyways, I loved this episode. I can’t even quite explain why (spoilers for the rest of this posts there) but I enjoyed it tremendously. Let’s see if Crow is better at this building suspense thing than I am!
I’ve seen bloggers able to do that! Let’s see if I can pretend… I loved it, too, but I won’t say why until later. How’s that? I’m building mystery!
Of course, spoilers for episode 84 (Deky vs. Gentle Criminal) of My Hero Academia. That’s the one in which Deku and Gentle Criminal meet for the first time, in case you’re reading this way into the future or something.
Let me just start by laying out the summary of the episode. It’s just about time to put on the show for the school festival and last minute preparations, and nerves abound in class-1. Everyone has gotten into the spirit of things and is desperate to put on a great show. Deku and Aoyama realize that the rope which Deku was going to use to hoist Aoyama above the audience and make him float around is a bit worn, and they worry it could be dangerous. So Deku resolves to go buy one in the morning right before show time.
Episode 85: School Festival Start!!
This episode surprised me. For the first 8 or 9 minutes, I was a bit underwhelmed. I had resigned myself that My Hero Academia Season 4’s episode “School Festival Start!!” (the 85th episode) was going to give us a lackluster ending bereft of the show’s trademark Meaningful Fights™ — fights where the theme is every bit as important as the action. I figured Danjuurou Tobita/Gentle Criminal would give Izuku Midoriya/Deku a decent fight, Manami Aiba/La Brava would use her surprise Quirk, there’s be a bit of action, and we’d get to see Yuuga Aoyama/Shining Hero become a human disco-ball, and everyone would be happy. But then some interesting stuff happened, and by the ending, I was pleasantly surprised!
There were two things really liked about this episode: Deku’s growth as a tactician and My Hero Academia once again showing us that Hero culture has some cracks.
Before we get into the episode, do you have any opening thoughts, Irina?
I’m increasingly feeling like the lone man out. I quite liked this episode including the first half. In fact I may have preferred the first half. Both Gentle and La Brava are very recognizable characters that have just a touch of fridge terror to them. Meaning that we have obviously seen way more formidable adversaries in My Hero Academia. Arguably they all were but that’s what makes them so special.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Also I’m not sure what the 9 minute mark was.
Episode 86: Let It Flow! School Festival!
Hello everyone. I hope you’re all keeping healthy and safe! These are strange times and we could all use a little sunshine in our lives. At work we’ve been lucky enough to be able to mobilize rather quickly and get the majority of people set up to work from home, and I’ve been diligently self-isolating since Tuesday. For me it really doesn’t change much to my daily life except more work and less bogging time, but I’m going to fix that. I’m a bit of a workaholic and whenever I start working from home (this isn’t the first time), I end up working all the time unless I set up a strict schedule that includes leisure time. For anyone else out there that might be working from home for the first time, I hardily suggest it. You can burn yourself out without noticing it if you’re not careful! How are you holding up Crow? And how’s the family?
Fine, thanks for asking! I’m working from home now as well, and I’ll second your advice about sticking to a schedule. I also force myself to get up at the same time and get dressed as if I’m going to work. It’s less comfortable, but when it’s time to wrap things up, it’s great to throw on an anime tee-shirt and kick back. Helps me know the work day’s over, too! Until I get a text from work or something…
I do the same thing. Even occasionally put makeup on which is ridiculous…
Episode 87: Japanese Hero Billboard Chart
I think I finally get to use the word penultimate! I usually forget during my review of penultimate episodes to use the word penultimate. Of course, you’re probably worried I’ll overuse it, here’s the last time I’ll use it in this review:
Welcome to the collaboration review between Irina (from I Drink and Watch Anime) and me for the penultimate episode of My Hero Academia’s fourth season. Titled “Japanese Hero Billboard Chart,” it gave us some interesting highlights, like finding out what’s going to happen to Eri after she leaves the hospital, the goings on at the Japanese Hero Billboard ceremony, and the resurgence of a rumored enemy — an enemy most of the heroes didn’t see coming. Most importantly? We finally learn who the bunny girl was in the end credits! That was a huge relief. I was afraid they were going to end the season and not tell us.
I have to say, writing is a bit more challenging, what with the pandemic and all. How are you holding up, Irina? And any opening thoughts on the episode?
Where do I start… let’s see… Penultimate is a wonderful word. I’m glad you remembered to use it.
Second, I’m doing well but I’m making questionable decisions. For instance, I’m using this time where a very limited amount of people are going to see me to test out hair colours and well… this may have happened:
As for an opening regarding this episode. Hawks has been hyped up by manga readers a lot so I was looking forward to getting to know his character but also a little afraid that he wouldn’t live up to said hype.
Episode 88: His Start
This morning I watched two season finales. I watched the last episode of the currently airing Haikyuu and I was delighted to see a strong ending to what has been an overall very strong season of one of my favourite animes. Haikyuu To the Top has been exceptional so far. Why am I going on about this? Well, you know how when you watch an episode of an anime you really enjoy it can sort of affect your experience if you watch an episode of a different anime right after?
I watched the last episode of this season’s My Hero Academia right after finishing up Haikyuu. It was a very tough act to follow.
Crow how are you? I have been following your blog so I have a clue but I still want to know. Is there anything you would like to say about this episode before we begin??? Other than, there will be spoilers, of course!
And I’m (uncomfortably) bold? I’m doing well with social distancing. It’s the idea of going back to work that makes me pause. Hope things are well with you!
I had a pretty strong reactions to certain moments in this episode. I’m dying to know if they coincide with yours!