Gentle and La Brava put it all on the line
What They Say:
As the clock strikes 9 AM, the U.A. school festival begins!! Meanwhile, its desperation time for Gentle, La Brava and Deku. For both Gentle and Deku, their dreams have grown far beyond their own desires. Two sides of the same coin, they clash in order to protect the futures of those they love.
Content (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
We are moments away from the school festival, as students and staff excitedly prepare for the big day ahead of them. But unbeknownst to them all, on the outskirts of campus a struggle between hero and villain has reached its breaking point. Deku cleverly uses Gentle’s own quirk to close the gap and apprehend the two infiltrators. It seems like the end of the road for Gentle and La Brava, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
For such a lighthearted story arc, the backstories for Gentle and La Brava are woefully tragic. A young girl whose feelings were dismissed and mocked, La Brava was dejected by the cruelty of youth and had lost all hope in the world. That is until she discovered the Gentle Criminal. Someone who finally accepted her feelings, the last beacon of light in her world was that man. It’s the same for Gentle. His original goal of being a hero was rejected by family, friends and educators alike. And due to a botched attempt at saving a civilian, the door to his heroic dreams were closed forever. Staggering at the edge of society, a new path opened up before him in the form of his very first fan. With the help of La Brava, Gentle’s petty crimes evolved into passionate vigilantism. His grand scheme of infiltrating U.A. was no longer his goal alone – he wanted to accomplish something for the one person that still loved him. When everyone else turned their back on him, La Brava was his bright future. He no longer fought for the society that rejected him, he fought to prove his worth to the one person that thought he could accomplish his dreams.
This was their last chance. La Brava activates her “Love” quirk, enhancing Gentle’s strength tenfold. He breaks free of Deku’s hold and counterattacks. But as we know, Deku isn’t fighting for himself either. The ambitions of everyone at U.A. and Eri’s first chance at real happiness – Deku was fighting to protect that future. Gentle and Deku acknowledge each other’s motivations, but they’re left no choice but to face each other to reach that end. While not the most physically-demanding battle Deku’s ever fought, Gentle’s enhanced abilities make him a formidable adversary. Using his new long-ranged techniques along with his developed Shoot Style, Deku just barely wins out. This fight was kinetic, impactful and emotional, with a great stretch of animation to close-out the dramatic peak of the School Festival brawl.
With Gentle defeated, La Brava pleads with Deku to let him go. Deku looks conflicted, as the bright future he was willing to protect meant destroying the future of these two. Gentle had been thinking about this from the beginning. He tried to stop La Brava from being his accomplice, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. He told her to run, knowing that she wouldn’t. He also assumes she’ll stoop to even more dangerous crimes if she were to lose him. As Hound Dog and U.A. staff start to close in, Gentle sends Deku flying away from the scene as a show of respect for the young man’s dedication to protect the festival. Gentle and La Brava embrace as they prepare to turn themselves in. Horikoshi’s ability to write such sympathetic characters in Gentle and La Brava makes this one of the highlights of season four.
In the end, Deku’s resolve came out on top. It started as a silly encounter with a masked tea connoisseur, but the battle with Gentle and La Brava ends in dramatic fashion. The stakes weren’t as high as they were during the Overhaul arc, but the emotional story of these two made for a compelling struggle we don’t often see in the spotlight of My Hero Academia. I hope this isn’t the end for Gentle Criminal and La Brava.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll, Funimation, Hulu, VRV