I won’t deny that people use Shigeo. Most of the people in his life (barring like, his parents and the Body Improvement Club) started out being his friends, or hanging around him for that very reason.
Dimple wants Shigeo’s body so he can become a god. Reigen kept him around because having an actual esper aided in his own business…and others did for their own reasons. For themselves.
They’re all in immense danger, staying here. We the readers know that at this point, Shigeo’s not going to get free. He can’t. The trap Mogami laid was too well planned, too well executed, and Shigeo is stuck.
But Reigen stays.
Because Mob trusts him.
That’s the thing, about shonen protags. The loyalty they win is immediate and usually because of their force of personality, or the bombastic acts they do to save others.
Shigeo isn’t like other shonen protags. He’s quieter. He’s softer.
And it’s his kindness, not Heroic Good Will, that draws people to him.
It’s his kindness that draws in people that would normally not be very good people - like Dimple and like Reigen - and it’s what keeps them there.
Shigeo is good, and not in the way you’d normally expect.
He’s good in a way that makes other people want to be good like him, too. It makes them want to prove him right. That his trust isn’t misplaced.
Because it’s impossibly hard to let down someone who trusts you and likes you, more than anyone else ever has.
It takes so much strength to be good. It takes so much strength to be kind.
I don’t like what Shigeo has had to go through in this arc. I will never like it. But the fact that he has, and the fact that - with a little bit of help - he’s managed to come out of the other side still clinging to his goodness and his kindness…
Mogami was wrong, you see?
Oh, it doesn’t take strength at all to fall to the anger and fear and hate. It’s so easy, really.
What takes strength and courage and love is climbing out. What takes strength is living and believing in something good, even when the world wants you to think that it doesn’t exist.
In any other manga this would be adorable. And it should be! Mob is adorable, his smile is SUPER ADORABLE, and if you add an equally adorable cat to the mix, you get enough cuteness to tranquilize a bull elephant.
- “You can’t opt out of male privilege.” - “I’m trans exclusioniary.” - “Trans women are invading our safe spaces.” - “Cis is homophobic/a slur, just say non-trans.” - “Transphobia doesn’t exist.” - “Gender critical.” - “T(W)ERF = Lesbian. Why do you hate lesbians so much?” Aphobes:
- “You can’t opt out of straight privilege.” - “I’m ace/aro exclusionairy.” - “Aces/aros are invading our safe spaces.” - “Allosexual/alloromantic is homophobic, just say non-ace.” - “Aphobia doesn’t exist.” - “Why do you want to be oppressed so bad?” - “Acehets.” - “Ace critical.” - “Aphobe = LGBT. Why do you hate LGBT people so much?” Biphobes:
- “You have straight passing privilege.” - “Bi people in het relationships are invading our safe spaces.” - “Monosexual/monoromantic is homophobic, just say gay/straight.” - “Biphobia doesn’t exist, it’s just homophobia.” - “Bihets.” Truscum:
- “You can’t opt out of cis privilege.” - “NBs are invading our safe spaces.” - “Exorsexism doesn’t exist.”
- “Why do you want to be oppressed so bad?”