“My Hero Academia” distinguishes itself by delving into the complex nuances of both its heroes and villains, providing depth to characters on both sides of the conflict. The series fearlessly confronts the ethical dilemmas faced by heroes and villains alike, delving into the intricate motivations driving its antagonists, such as Shigaraki, Twice, Himiko, and Dabi.
Given this narrative approach, the notion of the protagonist, Deku, transitioning into a villain may not be as far-fetched as it seems. From a tender age, Deku bore witness to the harsh realities of this superhuman society, particularly its treatment of outcasts. His aspirations were repeatedly dashed until All Might entrusted him with One for All. Given this history, is it truly inconceivable that Deku might reach a breaking point and bid farewell to hero society?
During the Tartarus Escapees arc, a time of unprecedented distrust towards heroes and rampant chaos in Japan, Deku assumes a semblance of a villainous appearance. This transformation stems from his solitary quest to locate All for One, resulting in widespread rumors and public apprehension. Speculations abound, with citizens entertaining the possibility that he may be a Nomu or somehow linked to All for One due to his possession of multiple Quirks. While the concept of Dark Deku has captivated discussions, is there any veracity to these rumors?
The answer is a resounding no. In “My Hero Academia,” Deku does not transition into a villain, and there exists a minimal likelihood that he ever will. The closest he comes to being perceived as a villain is during his Vigilante phase, yet even then, when external observers might believe he has gone rogue, he operates with the knowledge and endorsement of the Pro Heroes. There is also a fleeting moment when Deku is wrongfully framed as a villain in “My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission,” yet this is merely a misunderstanding, devoid of any factual basis.
It is worth noting that there was a juncture in Deku’s past where a different trajectory might have led him down a darker path. Indeed, the concept that Shigaraki and Deku embody two facets of the same coin is a central theme in the series. These characters share profound parallels, illustrating how a child subjected to adverse circumstances could potentially gravitate towards villainy just as readily as heroism.
However, despite his tumultuous life journey and formidable struggles, Deku has consistently demonstrated that his inherent inclination towards selflessness and heroism is an indelible part of his identity, unlikely to waver. With the unwavering support of All Might, Class 1-A, and the entire U.A. community, Deku is poised to ascend to the pinnacle and become the greatest hero. (And in his own words, don’t just take my word for it—he’s said it himself.)