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10 Criticisms of My Hero Academia That Are Completely Valid

Updated October 29, 2020 16.6k votes 3k voters 99.1k views10 items

My Hero Academia is one of the most popular series to appear in the last decade, and there's a lot to love about it. The story is engaging, the art and animation is top notch, and the characters are lovable and interesting. 

But as good as MHA is, it isn't perfect. There are actually some valid critiques of My Hero Academia to be made. Everyone has different things that bother them about the show. For some people, it's the excessive fan service that feels totally out of place. For others, it's the fact that the story set up an amazing world that it hasn't even come close to fully exploring. Maybe you feel like the side characters are underutilized, or have problems with how the quirks function.

The series isn't done yet, so it's hard to judge it completely - but viewers don't wait until a series is over to form their opinions. We can love a series and still acknowledge its flaws, so let's do that for MHA. Vote up the My Hero Academia criticisms that you think are totally valid, and vote down the ones you think are unfair. 

  • 5

    The Series 'Tells' When It Should 'Show'

    Over on Reddit, u/mmm1928 had a lot to say about their issues with My Hero Academia. They brought up an interesting point about the series' failure to "show" important story moments, often opting to "tell" instead. While all good stories use both methods, MHA isn't necessarily choosing the right technique at the right time. Here's what they had to say:

    "We heard from Endeavor during the Remedial Course Arc that people are becoming more scared, more anxious, that they don’t trust heroes without All Might, but we never have seen this. A perfect showing of this would have been during the Red Riot introduction, where after Kirishima gives his all to defeat the villain, but Fatgum has to intervene due to him not being strong enough yet. Here we could have the civilians show they are not pleased with this outcome because of their fears. Instead of seeing this kids potential, they just see how things are now

    To continue from my previous point, and going back to my last point in "Balance" we have not seen much real Pro vs Villain action.

    I wish we got to see Endeavor process his change more. By the time he comes to All Might, the person he hates most, for advice, a lot of that processing has been done. Would have loved to see him try to reach out to his family. Fuyumi mentions he’s starting to come around more, but we only ever see this in Chapter 192."

    Fair criticism?
  • 6

    Side Characters Get Sidelined

    My Hero Academia has hundreds of characters with unique quirks and fascinating personalities. That's not a problem. What is a problem is that far too many of them are introduced, only to serve no purpose whatsoever in the narrative. 

    It's not that every single character needs their own individual arc - that would be excessive and impossible to keep track of. But what's the point in having 20 students in Class 1-A if only 3/4s of them ever do anything? What's the point of also having Class 1-B, if only a few of them are ever going to end up being relevant? That's not to mention all other characters who appear in the series!

    Minor characters should serve a purpose. Sometimes, that purpose is to reveal something about the wider world, sometimes it's to help develop a more important character, and sometimes it's to further the plot. While some side characters in MHA do exactly that, others simply show up, introduce their quirks, and then stagnate. 

    Fair criticism?
  • 7

    The World Hasn't Changed Enough 

    It's easy to forget that My Hero Academia is supposed to take place 1,000 years in the future. Why? Because the only thing that's changed in any meaningful way is the evolution of quirks. Technology is exactly the same - people use smartphones that look like they're from the year the series came out, personal computers and cars are no different, and everyone dresses like they're in modern-day Japan when they aren't wearing superhero costumes. 

    1,000 years is a long time. In the year 1020, we did not know what germ theory was. We did not have the Internet. We did not have cars. The United States wasn't an established country. Thousands of species that no longer exist today were flourishing. The climate was completely different. There's no reason why the world would stagnate for an entire millennium.

    The result is that the setting is not just implausible, but also boring. They just go to school and live in a regular city. It's sad, because it could be so much more. 

    Fair criticism?
  • 8

    The Male/Female Ratio Is Way Off

    In the world of My Hero Academia, male characters are far better represented than female ones. Let's lay out some numbers. In Class 1-A, there are 15 male students, and 5 female. Class 1-B only does slightly better, with 6 out of 20 students being female. 

    Few of the characters with plot-crucial arcs are female. While many are powerful, none except Nana Shimura have the kind of transcendent powers that many of the male ones do. And Nana Shimura is a figure of the past, not a major character. 

    Some might argue that this is acceptable because it's a shounen anime, which means that it's aimed at boys. First of all, at least 50% of shounen manga readers are female, so by this point new creators should probably be working with that figure in mind. Second of all, even if 100% of readers were male, boys and men still need to see girls and women in their media who don't play second fiddle to their male counterparts. 

    Fair criticism?