Things have certainly escalated quickly as the Paranormal Liberation War Arc has changed the entire landscape of My Hero Academia. As the recent chapters have established, the Heroes are no longer trusted after all the death, injuries, and destruction caused by Paranormal Liberation Front led by the newly reincarnated All-For One in Tomura Shigaraki body. Now with the Hero Society in shambles and villains rising up, embolden by Paranormal Liberation Front powerful showing in Jaku City, and knowing he has a target on his back Izuku Midoriya has left UA High School to become a vigilante hero as Deku. With Izuku Midoriya striking out on his own how will things go moving forward for this series? Let’s find out with chapter 307 of My Hero Academia.
Writer & Artist: Kohei Horikoshi
Story Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 8 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: In an abandoned city Grand (Yo Shindo, 3rd year Hero Course student at Ketsubutsu Academy) and Turtle Neck (Tatami Nakagame, 3rd year Hero Course student at Ketsubutsu Academy) search for the people who are remaining in the city.
They eventually find the people gathered in an abandoned building. Grand and Turtle Neck try to convince the people to come with them to the shelters at Ketsubutsu Academy. The people turn down the offer as they don’t trust the heroes to protect them and would rather rely on themselves. They reveal that they’ve already had success defending themselves and their hometown against thieves.
Grand tries to argue that while they can hold their own against thieves fighting villains like the Nomu is a whole different game. The leader of the group says their days of relying on heroes is over.
Later Grand vents his frustration to Turtle Neck about how unsuccessful their attempt was and wonders if a show of force would’ve been a better approach.
Turtle Neck suddenly gets a call from Shikkui Makabe (hero name Mr. Smith, who is also a student at Ketsubutsu Academy), who warns them to run as they’ve got word on a villain known as Jailbreaker is nearby.
The warning comes too late as Jailbreaker (formerly known as Muscular, one of the villains who attacked the UA High School students during the Forest Training Camp Arc) destroys a building behind Grand and Turtle Neck. Grand tells Turtle Neck to go back to the civilians in the building they came from to get them to evacuate while he holds off Jailbreaker.
Back at the previous building Turtle Neck tries to convince the civilians to come with her to a safe location. The civilians don’t listen as they would rather fight Jailbreaker themselves. This attempt is unsuccessful as Jailbreaker immediately destroys part of the building that the civilians are in.
Grand tries to use his powers against the villain but Jailbreaker is able to use his expanded layers of muscle fiber to protect himself against all of Grand’s attacks. Jailbreaker them continuously pounds on Grand. Suddenly someone yells out “SMASH” and knocks Jailbreaker to the side.
Deku (in his updated costume with shows up and takes Grand to safety as he remembers Jailbreaker as Muscular and now realizes why his Danger Sense Quirk wouldn’t stop alerting him to something. Jailbreaker immediately recognizes that voice as being Izuku Midoriya. End of chapter.
The Good: Chapter 307 of My Hero Academia doesn’t throw us as much game changing story beats as the last few chapters of the series. Rather, Chapter 307 is all about giving us a look into what the new status quo for My Hero Academia is now from a ground level. In taking a step back from delivering one punch after to My Hero Academia Kohei Horikoshi is able to settle the reader into the new normal for the world.
Starting out with Yo Shindo and Tatami Nakagame as the heroes we were following it was a good change of pace. It furthered establishes how it will be all hands-on deck moving forward. We are no longer just following the UA High School students and their mentors. Things have completely changed after the Paranormal Liberation War Arc as the number of Pro Heroes have become a fraction of what it was before. That means we are seeing the students with Provisional Hero Licenses being allowed to work normal hero duties without mentors.
This isn’t out of the ordinary as we did see Izuku Midoriya paired up with Mirio Togota during the Overhaul arc. But what is different is that Shindo and Nakagame are working directly with their school with another student, Shikkui Makabe, being their Oracle person-in-the-chair giving them calls of villain attacks. This is something that you can miss on your first read through since Miakabe name is only said once but when you realize that he is a fellow student things click more about the current state of the world. It’s in these little details that Kohei Horikoshi really nails the gravity of what is going on in the world.
Shindo and Nakagame’s lack of success in convincing the civilians who have stayed behind in their abandoned hometown also further drives home the lack of trust society has in heroes. We see that in the time skip that civilians have become even more embolden to rely on themselves for protection. They fully believe that dealing with petty thieves and other types of criminals is the same as experienced Quirk villains.
While the lack of trust in heroes is very apparent the civilians also speak truth about the current plan around shelters that Endeavor and other Pro Heroes have implemented with the government. There is a sense of hubris with this plan that the Pro Heroes and government still aren’t seeing. In their own way the Pro Heroes know their numbers are limited now and need to maximize their resources. In the process they are unintentionally creating a police state-type environment where they hold everyone in a bubble. Even if they have the best intentions in mind it is understandable that there are civilians that don’t want this, especially right after the greatest show of weakness since the Pro Heroes society became a thing.
The appearance of Jailbreaker, who was formerly known as Muscular, was a great way to show that the remaining Heroes don’t have control of the villains out in the wild. Villain attacks are still a thing and there is no good way to prepare as there is a limited number of Heroes to deal with them. And even if they were trusted to try to get the civilians to safety Grand and Turtle Neck are still students at the end of the day. They don’t have the experience Ms. Joke or other Pro Heroes to take on major villains, especially ones they were unprepared to fight. At the same time, we do see how competently Grand and Turtle Neck work together as they quickly put a plan together to try to get civilians to safety, even if it did not work.
Jailbreaker being the one who attacked the abandoned city also worked well into this being the first time we see Izuku acting under his superhero name, Deku, now that he has become a vigilante post-time skip. Jailbreaker, when he was Muscular, is the first villain that pushed Izuku beyond his limits and almost caused him to retire before becoming a Pro Hero because of his injuries after their fight. Now as Deku we can see all the progress that Izuku has made since tapping further into the power of One For All during the time skip. In the process it can be done against a villain that Deku has history with that makes this upcoming fight personal.
The Bad: Given how this is the first post-time skip chapter it is disappointing that we don’t get an idea of what is going on with the UA High School students or other major Pro Heroes. I totally understand that Horikoshi wants to bring the focus back on Midoriya after more recent chapters have focused on other characters. But we have had such a focus on the large cast of characters in My Hero Academia that I hope we do see more of a balance struck with how many characters make appearances in the future. Even as we are on what is being called “The Final Arc” there are a lot of plotlines going on at the same time. So I don’t want to see something get lost or forgotten because one character story takes precedence over all the others.
Overall: Chapter 307 of My Hero Academia was all about getting fans settled into the new status quo of the world in this series. This was the right choice to make, especially after a time skip, by Kohei Horikoshi. It was also an opportunity to bring back minor characters like Yo Shindo and Tatami Nakagame back into play while making Izuku Midoriya debut fight as the solo vigilante hero Deku even more memorable.
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