i don’t think i’ve made a post about this yet, but i find it fascinating how MHA is kinda the story of a next gen shonen story, only the audience has never seen the previous generation.
All Might was the protagonist of his story, and now he’s reaching his limit and needs to retire. the story focus is on the new generation surpassing the old, and learning from their mistakes. All Might doesn’t want Izuku to experience the same pain he did, by losing his master. instead, he’s focusing on helping Izuku become the next Symbol of Peace.
Izuku is learning that self-sacrifice isn’t the end all, be all for heroes. that you can’t just wreck your body to save someone else, because sooner or later it’ll catch up with you.
Endeavor is what would happen if a shonen rivalry continued on into adulthood without ever resolving itself. he’s the logical conclusion of an unresolved rivalry of someone who couldn’t take being left behind. Bakugou’s development is in direct contrast to Endeavor’s, because Bakugou is learning and growing and slowly letting go of his spite and frustration and need to be number one all the time, unlike Endeavor
Toshinori made himself the Symbol of Peace, and as a result he was the only thing keeping society on it’s feet. once he fell, so did everything keeping the villains at bay. the new generation are all going to learn from this and become more symbols, holding up the peace together instead of just relying on one person.
the next generation is all about Teamwork, not just working as individuals.
Toshinori lost his place as a hero after he went after All for One in revenge those 6 years ago. he lost sight of his heroism in order to avenge Nana. that’s the moment he fell. that’s why he can no longer be a hero anymore, because of the injuries he sustained from that fight.
Nana gave up her child and cut herself off from her family because she couldn’t take the pain of it anymore. she likely kept herself emotionally distant from Toshinori because of this, during their short time together, and Toshinori is doing the complete opposite of what she did; Toshinori is getting close to Izuku and they’re both emotionally supporting each other.
there’s so much about Toshi’s life that we don’t know about, and it’s his life that would’ve been the star of the previous generation. how he was quirkless, how he wanted to become a hero, and a symbol who could stop crime, how he met Nana and earned her trust and gained her powers, how he lost her and trained under Gran Torino, how Endeavor met him and sparked that rivalry, how he eventually became All Might and how his reputation alone nearly stopped crime (something no hero in any previous generation was able to do).
his whole life could be told in it’s own series, but we, the audience, aren’t privy to that information. we just know the bare bones, and occasionally we find out more as the story goes on. little hints of what happened before. but that’s all in the past–it’s all about helping the next generation grow now. All Might was a legend in his own time, but he’s old and injured and has to retire from hero work. instead, he’s helping a new generation of heroes grow; he’s helping Izuku become the next Symbol of Peace in his place.
the story of MHA is a next generation story without the previous generation being shown, and i think that’s fascinating.