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My Hero Academia Vol. #19 Manga Review

3 min read
The perfect breath of fresh air after the long yakuza arc!

Gentle Criminal arrives to steal the show!

Creative Staff
Story/Art: Kohei Horikoshi
Translation: Caleb Cook

What They Say
In the wake of tragedy, Class 1-A prepares for the upcoming culture festival. While the students are busy planning for success, other forces are at work with their own agendas, and Midoriya, amid the preparations, continues to train with All Might. But when he runs into the failed hero Gentle Criminal, what lesson will he learn?

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
This time around, we get two main focal points. Well, and a chapter at the start where Aoyama looks like a creepy stalker, but turns out to have surprisingly wholesome intentions. But aside from that, what we focus on first and foremost is the upcoming culture festival. And for the event, Class 1-A plans on doing a dance and live music show, which allows characters like Ashido and Jiro to take center stage a bit more than usual. The real focus, though, is Deku and Mirio inviting Eri to come out to see everything. It’s a cute little touch, and it’s nice to see the series and our heroes follow up on the fact that the young girl traumatized by that incident still needs gentle care to truly recover from it.

However, the other focus this time is on Gentle Criminal, a man who essentially tries to more or less gain Youtube fame in the process of committing crimes. However, he’s really not quite as successful as he’d like at that, despite him and his assistant La Brava proving quite enthusiastic about the task. At any rate, he’s just a really fun character all around and a breath of fresh air compared to the overly serious, dark villains we normally get. He’s just a completely different type of character for the series, and an incredibly enjoyable one at that!

At any rate, Gentle’s plan is ultimately to invade UA, which through random happenstance causes him to have a run-in with Deku. And through that fight, we see that Gentle’s personality isn’t the only thing fun about him, as his Quirk is amazing, too. But just how will this aspiring villain fare when pitted against our hero?

In Summary
So at its core, this volume is about setting up for the cultural festival. And it’s an okay enough school event, with some of the less prominent students getting their time to shine and all that. But the real star of the show here is Gentle Criminal. The guy’s style, personality, and abilities are all just absolutely perfect. And so, thanks to his appearance what could be a throwaway small arc has instead become something that’s just plain fun and a joy to read. Hopefully this all sticks the landing, as it really does feel like the perfect breath of fresh air after the long yakuza arc!

Content Grade: A-
Art Grade: A-
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B+

Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Viz Media
Release Date: June 4th, 2019
MSRP: $9.99

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