I suppose I wouldn’t want the action to be dragged for so long but it sure feels like we breezed through a ton of fight scenes. With how this and the last episode paced, it really does feel like Bones is calculating to keep Season 2 at exactly 25 episodes. It’s hard to complain however since it makes sense for the penultimate episode to be Bakugo and Deku’s big fight against All Might and the aftermath to serve as the finale. Besides, we got some pretty neat character development for several members of the supportive cast in this episode.
For the sake of simplicity, let’s tackle each fight one by one.
Uraraka & Aoyama vs. Thirteen – This was a pretty brief fight but it certainly makes Aoyama all the more mystifying as a comic relief character. I want to say Aoyama knew Uraraka’s martial arts training would let her take on Thirteen up close and him eliciting her very obvious crush towards Deku was a ruse to make her let go of the rail. But knowing Aoyama’s personality, I also feel inclined to consider the possibility it was just a coincidence that worked in the team’s favor.
Kaminari & Ashido vs Principal Nezu – Oh man, this is exactly what I had hoped it would be. Apparently, Principal Nezu’s Quirk is simply that he’s insanely smart but that still proves to be a huge asset. The guy looked like he was always a hundred steps ahead; poor Kaminari and Ashido didn’t even have a chance. Also, am I the only one disturbed by how sinister Nezu can be? If he really let his mind go, he’d probably be a villain. I especially love how he kept one pathway open just out of pity. Having a talking animal as the principal was peculiar enough but now there’s the duality of him caring for his students and him venting through his trauma as a lab rat.
Jiro & Koda vs Present Mic – I was pleasantly surprised with this episode since Koda is typically someone in the background. I found his of bugs so simple yet understandable and I love how he lets go of his fear when he realizes that Jiro is risking her well-being for the exam. If you’re going to be a Hero, you can’t let petty things like irrational phobias get in your way; it’s a simple but effective lesson. Also, “You Say Run” really does go with everything doesn’t it?
Hagakure & Shouji vs Snipe – This was a pretty short fight as well as the most straightforward. Shouji and Hagakure didn’t really plan anything though I do like seeing how well these characters can improvise strategies together. And as always, Hagakure’s invisibility is used to amusing effect (can she not get a costume that turns invisible with her?).
Mineta & Sero vs Midnight – Well, it’s really just Mineta vs Midnight since Sero gets put to sleep by Midnight. Mineta has always been an odd duckling to me. I have to wonder how he even got in the Hero Course and I really don’t care for his perversions. And yet, following his arc has always been interesting. Is Mineta genuinely a pervert? Yes. Is his goal to be a hero simply to impress girls noble? No. But I really can’t deny that Mineta is way smarter than you would think. His grades are alarmingly good and his fight with Midnight demonstrates his knack for trickery. It is super interesting that it is people like Deku has helped Mineta realized that people aren’t heroes because they are “cool” but rather the other way around. Once again, Deku is the kind of person that inspires people to push themselves as individuals and Mineta has taken that to heart. That and Mineta realizes that a Hero has to be competent to avoid being killed (seriously, Mineta has had some pretty wild experiences at this point).
And that’s all the fights in Episode 23 of Season 2. Next week is the big showdown between Team Midoriya/Bakugo and All Might and I’m looking forward to that. I’m not sure how these two rivals can beat the #1 Hero though….