The matches are over and it’s time to roll on into our next story arc…soon. Not this week. This week is a bit of a wind down, with characters mulling over the important moments of the 1-A–1-B clash. The most pressing issue touched upon is, of course, the emergence of Blackwhip. Since this is the first indication from any holder that One For All has latent Quirks within it, nobody has any idea what to do—even All Might is at a loss. The deepest we get is Bakugo’s statement that this new development links One For All and All For One even further, noting One For All’s existence is because of All For One and that they are the only known Quirks that allow people to wield multiple abilities. It’s an astute observation, one that furthers the notion that these Quirks are still almost alien concepts in a world of insane powers. Midoriya’s ability to seemingly lock parts of One For All away is also a fairly unique skill. Todoroki, for example, simply didn’t use his fire powers, he never actually sealed them away; Midoriya willed Blackwhip to recede. It’s a difference that places One For All in a more spiritual category than other Quirks. It is a part of Midoriya’s body, but it’s also separate from him in a way. It’s still cool though.
This episode also gives us a check in with Eri, everybody’s favourite bundle of emotionally healing joy. In order to help train her in using her Quirk, Aizawa organises for Monoma (everybody’s least favourite) to try and copy it. Though the attempt fails, it does show an interesting aspect of Monoma’s Quirk, being that he could be a fantastic teacher. What better way to teach somebody to wield a strange Quirk? Copy it and learn with them; use your wisdom to help them develop it. Heck, Monoma could use it with his classmates to create new moves. I mean, he probably won’t, but it’d be cool and more than a little redemptive. Regardless, the failure to copy also details what the “blanks” that Monoma has been talking about are. If a Quirk requires the accumulation of something to work (such as One For All’s stockpiling of power) the it won’t work for Monoma. He copies the Quirk at its core: at its base level. This does two things: it tells us that Eri’s Quirk requires a fuel of sorts, and it shows us how the first wielder of One For All existed. How the first learnt that the Quirk accumulated power I’ll never know, but it’s a good thing he did. Also, how does an accumulation Quirk work if it is locked in one body? Would the first have gotten stronger over his life? How strong? I know it’s a bit late in the game to be asking these questions, but Blackwhip just changed the game; so, maybe we do need to go back to the beginning, Cocomon-style.
P.S. Bakugo and Todoroki got their Provisional Hero Licences and immediately beat-up a bunch of Villains. Good for them…for Bakugo and Todoroki I mean, not…not the Villains.
P.P.S. Calling back to the Sports Festival via Todoroki’s worry that Midoriya was holding back in their fight was a fairly understated moment. That fight changed a lot for Todoroki; it was nice to see the series, and Midoriya, briefly recall that and assuage Todoroki’s worry.