This action packed volume of My Hero Academia opens with Bakugo in the midst of being kidnapped by the League of Villains. Overwhelmed and unable to fight them all back, Midoriya watches in dismay and horror as his friend is whisked away by evil forces.
Before they depart, the villains mock the young heroes in training, noting that the Heroes they admired so much have allowed multiple attacks to happen against the school, and even now were helpless to stop them from abducting one of their students. Their confidence in the established heroes of the world shaken, Bakugo is pulled away from them as they suffer a crippling loss at the hands of the League of Villains.
In the immediate aftermath, UA’s staff issues a sincere apology to the country and its students as All-Might and the others heroes prepare for a counter-attack. After discovering the location of the League of Villains, it seems as though All-Might and the other heroes have them on the run…until the fiendish mastermind behind it all makes his first official appearance.
All for One, All-Might’s enemy and holder of the immensely powerful quirk that allows him to steal and re-distribute quirks as he sees fit, easily defeats Best Jeanist and a handful of other powerful heroes. In fact, it happens so quickly that Midoriya can’t even process it.
The fearsome antagonist making himself known, All for One prepares to take Bakugo away when All-Might emerges to face his mortal enemy once again. Will he emerge victorious? Can Midoriya join the fight to save his friend? Or will the Heroes suffer another devastating loss at the hands of All for One?
Well, this volume of My Hero Academia grabs on tight and doesn’t let go as you go flying through the pages to your ultimate destination: understanding just how freakin’ crazy powerful All for One really is.
Despite the fact that there’s a LOT going on in this volume, it’s really well paced. The story transitions nicely from the final moments before Bakugo’s kidnapping, through the reaction at UA, to the discovery of the League of Villains hideout, navigates through the students’ thoughts on helping with Bakugo’s resuce, and then culminates with the Heroes storming the lair only to be caught off guard by All for One’s tremendous power.
The chapter in which Iida and the others debate going to rescue Bakugo is particularly well done. Midoriya is obviously struggling through his own insecurities, and his serious conversation with the doctors regarding the strain his body has already been put under certainly doesn’t help. Iida, obviously still recovering from the battle against Stain and haunted by his own lust for revenge, cautions the group against rushing out recklessly. Todoroki and the others help to balance the arguments between Iida and Midoriya, and ultimately the group understands that they need to make it a covert operation and avoid fighting at all costs. Seeing the larger dynamic really helps to bring to light the fact that these are all young heroes in training, and much like other famous groups of heroes (Avengers, Justice League, X-Men), they don’t always agree on the best way to approach a given challenge. Therefore, seeing the young heroes work through it together really showed off some key character development all around.
The shining star in this volume, strangely enough, was All for One. The whispered figure pulling the strings behind the League of Villains, All for One and Shiguraki share a distorted parallel to All Might and Midoriya. While the comparison might seem elementary, seeing it laid out in the closing chapters really drove it home, and likely will give manga readers reason to go back and review some of Shiguraki’s previous actions with more scrutiny.
Overall, a great continuation of the My Hero Academia story! You can pick up this volume at VIZ media here – and look forward to volume 11 coming in February!