After taking a break to take care of his health Kohei Horikoshi is back with a new chapter of My Hero Academia. I’m glad that Horikoshi was able take some time for some self-care and rest. Now with the return of My Hero Academia we will be getting the continuation of the new and improved Izuku Midoriya as he reappears on the scene post-timeskip as vigilante hero Deku. There are still a lot of questions as to what is going on in the world after the events of the Paranormal Liberation War arc. Maybe this new fight with Muscular, who is now going back Jailbreaker, will start answering a few questions. Let’s find out with chapter 308 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: Deku (Izuku Midoriya) saves Grand (Yo Shindo) from Jailbreaker (Goto Imasuji, formerly known as Muscular) attack. Jailbreaker immediately recognizes Deku as Izuku Midoriya and gets pumped to be able to fight someone that is on his level of power. Jailbreaker jumps and breaks the building Deku was standing in half.
Deku uses his Smokescreen Quirk (En, One For All sixth user, Quirk) to create cover so he can get Grand back to Turtle Neck (Tatami Nakagame). Turtle Neck recognizes Deku’s voice but can’t remember who he is because the smoke is covering his body.
Deku then uses his One For All Quirk along with Smokescreen Quirk to lead Jailbreaker away. In the process Deku loses some control over his Smokescreen Quirk, something the spirit of En calls out inside his mind. En reminds Deku that One For All and the other Quirks from past generations have grown with each user and Deku needs to relax to properly control all the powers. En suggests that Deku stop looking at each Quirk as tools and instead think of how to use them in strategic manners.
Taking this to heart Deku uses the Float Quirk (Nana Shimura, One For All’s seventh user and All Might’s mentor, Quirk) to better control the Smokescreen Quirk and lead Jailbreaker to him. Jailbreaker finds Deku and goes in for an attack. Deku immediately senses Jailbreaker with his Danger Sense Quirk (Hikage Shinomori, One For All’s fourth user, Quirk). Deku counters by using his Blackwhip Quirk (Daigoro Banjo, One For All’s fifth user, Quirk) to tie up Jailbreaker and slam him on to the ground.
Deku then questions Jailbreaker on where Tomura Shigaraki is. Jailbreaker doesn’t know and says he was left on his own to go as wild as he wants. Jailbreaker then demands to have a one-on-one rematch without gimmicks with Deku.
Deku asks Jailbreaker why does his rage to control him. Jailbreaker says he just want to live with out regrets by indulging in his desires. Deku wonders if there was any other path for Goto Imasuji. Jailbreaker answers with a loud “NOPE” and breaks free from Deku’s Blackwhip constraints.
Jailbreaker further powers up his Muscle Augmentation Quirk. As Jailbreaker does this Deku remembers Kota Izumi. Deku comes to realize that Jailbreaker just wants to hurt people and this fight between them was inevitable, as he also remembers what he learned about Tomura Shigaraki’s history.
Deku then begins to power up One For All. As he does this Deku reveals he knows the weakness to Jailbreaker’s Muscle Augmentation Quirk is that the bigger it gets the more uneven his muscle armor becomes. Deku then hits Jailbreaker with a full power punch at his top speed while saying “THIS IS ALSO MY FULL POWER!!” End of chapter.
The Good: Chapter 308 of My Hero Academia is a new tone setter for the rest of the series moving forward. That is something that started with Chapter 307 and we see that play out here as the first time we see Izuku Midoriya in action as Deku post-timeskip is in his rematch with Jailbreaker, the villain formerly known as Muscular. Having this rematch setting further drove home how every story arc in My Hero Academia builds on each other as we revisit plot points from the Forest Training Camp arc in this chapter.
Throughout My Hero Academia Chapter 308 Kohei Horikoshi does a fantastic job balancing out showing both how much Izuku Midoriya has grown as Deku while showing that he still has a lot of room for improvement. We see that with how even though Izuku is able to lead Jailbreaker away from causing more harm and destruction he does make mistakes with his use of the sixth One For All user’s Smokescreen Quirk. Its important that this is shown as it further shows us how Izuku has really been on his own for some time and only using the basics he was taught at UA High School along with additional solo training. It made it even more impressive that he was able to maintain his cool in saving Yo Shindo and getting him back to Tatami Nakagame while also thinking of the next step in getting Jailbreaker to follow him away from everyone.
At the same time, we do get to see Izuku be forced to work out of his comfort zone by having to improvise how to get Jailbreaker away from the main city and make his Quirks work. Now working as a vigilante as Deku, Izuku no longer has time to be strategizing every move. He needed to constantly think on his feet with how to best use all of the One For All past users Quirks together in a way that makes sense of him.
This made the appearance of the sixth One For All user, En, appearance even more impactful. Now that Izuku is able to communicate with most of the One For All users we are given the idea of how they are mentoring him from the vestige world. En being the one to get Izuku to realize why he isn’t properly maximizing each of his One For All Quirks worked to establish how Izuku was able to grow during the timeskip without the UA High School’s teachers.
Also, having Izuku’s first big solo fight as Deku be Jailbreaker, formerly known as Muscular, was a good use of the history the My Hero Academia has built up. After over 300 chapters we have been through many stories that has given us a great sense of what the history is for the My Hero Academia Universe. That includes all the important moments in Izuku’s hero journey. And one of the most important moments early on in this series was Izuku pushing himself beyond 100% of One For All’s power to defeat Muscular during the Forest Training Camp arc. Understanding that history made the fight between Deku and Jailbreaker feel even more personal.
Making things better is the fact that Horikoshi wrote Jailbreaker as a villain who only cared about the fun he has by using his Quirk’s full power to create chaos and destruction. Even when Deku tries to give Goto Imasuji to show that he could possibly be more than a force of destructions Jailbreaker drives home how he relishes in being a villain. There is no redeeming Jailbreaker as he is someone that needs to be stopped or else will just continue his rampage until there is nothing left.
Which all made the payoff of how Izuku as Deku revealed he knew Jailbreaker’s Muscle Augmentation Quirk’s weakness even better. It shows great growth that Deku uses his analytical mind to find this weakness of the bigger Jailbreaker makes his muscle armor the weaker certain parts of his body become. It made Deku unleashing his current full power an even more impactful moment to see put on display.
The Bad: The one thing that I wish that Horikoshi would at least point to is how much time has actually past in this current timeskip. The only idea of how much time has passed that we get is that its been no more than year since Shindo and Tatami are third years in their school, when they were previously second year’s when Izuku was a first year at UA High School. That would at least give us a better handle of how much time Izuku has spent training before he reappeared on the scene as Deku.
Overall: Kohei Horikoshi packing in great action with a strong sense of history behind what is going on in My Hero Academia Chapter 308. All the callbacks to past story arcs, like the Forest Training Camp arc, in the fight between Deku and Jailbreaker helped put over how much Izuku Midoriya has grown up to this point. It builds further excitement to learn more about the state of the My Hero Academia Universe post-timeskip.
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