My Hero Academia, episode 21, “Deku vs Gentle Criminal,” begins the conflict between Izuku Midoriya, Gentle Criminal and La Brava. In the background of this episode is the School festival. Taking place mostly during the day of the Festival, the episode is framed with time stamps. At 6:30 p.m. Izuku is training with Toshinori Yagi (All Might) when he’s given new support equipment. Mei has created “Air Force Gloves” for Deku. They are support gloves that help Deku in “unlocking” 20% of One For All. Mei has created the gloves to work with Deku’s “Iron Soles.” In order to better make use of his “concussive wind blasts,” these gloves help Deku create more focus blasts.

Deku using his Air Force Gloves for the first time in episode 84 of My Hero Academia
Deku using his Air Force Gloves for the first time

Deku vs Gentle

At 7:50 AM, Izuku runs to the store. One his way back at 8:30 he runs into a poorly disguised Gentle Criminal and La Brava. Izuku apologizes and Gentle tells him to be “careful, because he has been about to ruin him the aftertaste of the Golden Tips Imperial.” This proves to be a mistake, as extends the conversation. Deku is able to deduce that Gentle is the criminal he’s seen on social media. Deku drops his groceries and prepares to stop Gentle for doing whatever he plans to do. With no backup likely, Deku determines that he’s on his own. He activates One For All: Full Cowl at 8%. Gentle orders La Brava to begin filming, as his plans have changed.

Gentle’s Quirk, Elasticity, gives him the ability to “give elastic properties to everything he touches, and that includes the air itself.” He uses his Gently Rebound to repel Deku backwards. Gentle and La Brava attempt to flee. However, Deku is able to hit Gentle with his Delaware Smash Air Force. Gentle however, is still determined to follow through on his plan. Deku tackles him and the crash into a construction site. There Gentle best Deku using his Quirk to cause a steel beam to collapse. Deku is forced to catch it preventing him from given chase. Gentle’s willingness to threaten the safety of a innocent bystander seems to undermine his claim that he’s different from typical villains.

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The show must go on

It’s now 8:45 AM and Class 1-A is preparing to perform. With 15 minutes remain will Izuku or Gentle get to the festival first. Both are determined, but who will triumph? With Gentle and La Brava heading towards U.A., Deku uses his strength to lift the beam with one arm. He fires another Delaware Smash Air, but he misses. As Deku gives chase La Brava believes that they have no choice but to use her Quirk. While I still find the arc to be underwhelming Gentle interests me. My Hero Academia has always treated villains differently from other series. With the League of Villains having to grow and develop like the young heroes from U.A., the different ideologies from hero killer and now Gentle, I think that what the series might be known for is how diverse the villain are.

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