My Hero Academia Season 5 has finally completed its first half, which adapted the Joint Training Arc from the manga. While the arc wasn’t nearly as satisfying as most of the storylines the anime has done so far, it had some good standout moments. And Bones’ astounding work with the animation this season combined with Yuki Hayashi’s moving soundtrack indeed elevated the source material that could have been duller than people made it out to be.
My Hero Academia Season 5 started with a decent recap anime original episode which has been a tradition since the sophomore season and then went into the canon story with a shocking second episode featuring an exciting reunion between the Todoroki family. The highlight moment of the arc’s first half comes in Episode 2 when we get to find out that Hawks is working with Dabi and the League of Villains to get to Shigaraki, the payoff to which is inevitably coming soon.
Afterward, we quickly get to the joint training program between Class A and Class B students from the Hero course. And that’s when things started to get a bit shaky.
My Hero Academia Season 5 Review: A slower, more character-centric approach
My Hero Academia Season 5‘s first arc started a little slow, with nothing noteworthy or exciting actually happening. Sure, every fight had its moments, but sometimes they just ran a bit too long with that, especially the case for the initial battles, as it could have been much more enjoyable had they not been spun across two episodes or more. Because including the recap episodes, we were already 7 weeks into this season when things pick up the pace, and you finally start to feel that it is going somewhere.
Regardless though, every fight certainly had its moments.
Let’s start with the first fight, which featured Asui, Koda, Kaminari, and Kirishima alongside Shinso. The fight quickly establishes Shinso’s character as someone you could actually take an interest in among the plethora of characters we already have.
Furthermore, it reaffirms his presence as someone who could hold his own among the students of the Hero Course. Although, Kaminari was the one that got the most out of the spotlight that he was given in this first battle among the members of his group.
The second battle featuring Aoyama, Momo, Hagakure, and Tokoyami was certainly the least memorable fight among the five. While it did give Momo a great character moment, the fight’s best moments were easily the flashbacks between Tokoyami and Hawks.
The Third fight included Iida, Shoji, Shoto, and Ojiro and was easily the best battle among all five of them and involved an impressive amount of solid character interactions between the lead class and class B. There weren’t any predetermined plans dictating the flow of the fight here. It holds true to the plus ultra part of the series as everybody is just going all out in this round and surpassing their limits to emerge victoriously.
This battle felt the closest to an actual fight between the heroes and villains with its intensity as we gradually moved forward and the stakes kept getting more prominent.
Everybody had a part to play in this fight. Iida trying to step up to the role of Ingenium was one of the best moments of this arc, perfected by the goldy cut by Yutaka Nakamura. Todoroki’s growth was also a proud moment as he makes a significant step towards fully accepting his powers. And his battle with Tetsutetsu, which saw both of them trying to surpass their own limits while trying to come out on top, was insanely well done.
Bakugo, Jiro, Sero, and Sato’s fight was the first fight that felt perfectly paced and packed a huge amount of growth and action from Bakugo in just under 20 minutes. It was certainly an enjoyable watch and a key moment for the people who have been finding reasons to like Bakugo.
My Hero Academia Season 5 Review: Deku gets a new quirk
Episode 10 of My Hero Academia Season 5, titled “That Which is Inherited,” is the best entry of the season so far as we got to know more about Deku’s One for All.
Deku’s shocking revelation will have six more quirk manifest in him as he gets his latest quirk Black Whip blew the socks out of the viewers’ expectations. The entirety of that episode was handled brilliantly, and the atmosphere surrounding every moment just felt right.
The moment between Deku and the previous holder of One for All was remarkably impactful and was such an engaging watch that the episode felt like it ended in a flash.
Deku and Ochako‘s moment was probably the most wholesome scene of the arc, and it was just so endearing to watch.
The following episode was the last installment in the Joint Training Arc, and it provided a quite solid conclusion. Again, we see all the characters involved in the last battle getting their moment to shine, especially Ochako and Monoma. Deku and Shinso still stole the spotlight, though, as every single moment with them onscreen in the last episode was a treat to watch.
As a whole, this arc certainly prioritizes the show’s characters coming to internal realizations about just exactly how much they still need to grow to aspire to be a good hero.
Even if this arc started slow and pale, it did land on its two feet and gave us a strong finishing without dragging the better moments of this arc for too long, unlike the rest of the first half of My Hero Academia Season 5 and gave us some excellent character moments alongside a few solid action sequences with a reveal so significant that it will be affecting the entirety to the show’s foundation moving forward.
Also, props to Bones once again for doing a great job with the character animation in this arc.
What did you think of the first half of My Hero Academia Season 5? Comment down your thoughts below and let us know.