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The 5 Best And 5 Worst My Hero Academia Characters

Created by manga artist Kohei Horikoshi, My Hero Academia takes place in a world where 80 percent of the population has some type of weird superpower called "Quirks." Along with these superpowers, a complex system of superheroes and supervillains have emerged. The story follows Izuku Midoriya, a boy born without a Quirk who dreams of one day becoming a true hero. His wish is granted when his idol, the world-famous All Might, passes along his Quirk to Midoriya, letting him enroll in a renowned school to learn how to be a hero.

Since the manga's release date in 2014, the series has been a "Detroit Smash" worldwide. A well-regarded anime series soon followed, along with manga spinoffs, video games, movies, and more. A big factor in the success of My Hero Academia has been Horikoshi's incredible gift for character design. Each character in the story feels utterly unique, and each one could seemingly carry the story just as well as Izuku. However, not all characters are created equal; while Horikoshi has created some of the most interesting characters in superhero fiction, there are definitely some bad apples in the barrel. Here are the five best and five worst characters in My Hero Academia.

Best: All Might is better than all right

At first glance, All Might seems like a pretty obvious Superman pastiche; from his Superman-esque powers and helpful personality to the color scheme of his costume, it's immediately clear that All Might is meant to stand in for the first, and arguably greatest, superhero of all time. All Might even has his version of the Clark Kent identity: All Might's true form is a spindly, half-starved-looking man named Toshinori Yagi. However, Horikoshi takes All Might farther than just being a standard homage. Due to a battle with a supervillain years before My Hero Academia begins, Toshinori is limited in the time he can transform into All Might, giving him a clear and obvious weakness that's far more easily understood than Kryptonite. All Might's concerns and weaknesses are deeply human; he's the world's most popular superhero and he knows it. Striving to live up to his own reputation is a struggle, but it's important and rewarding enough to make up for that.

All Might's also just cool, hands down. He's beloved by the world of My Hero Academia for a reason. He's strong, he's fast, he faces down supervillains with a big smile and a booming voice. Rather than seeming godlike and impossible to relate to, All Might's battles in the anime are some of the most exciting and nerve-wracking in the whole show.

Worst: Minoru MIneta is a tiny pervert

Minoru Mineta has one of the worst quirks in My Hero Academia, but that's not the character's fault. Creator Kohei Horikoshi does a great job showing that even the most seemingly useless and absurd Quirks have their own value. No, what puts Mineta on the Worst list is that he's a horrible little pervert. Having an openly perverted character is a bit of a trope in anime, but just because it's common doesn't mean it's fun to watch. Mineta's obsession with his female classmates and adult superheroines is gross past the point of comedy. As much as the anime tries to showcase a deeper side of the grape-haired hero by acknowledging his intelligence and tactical mind, his personality is simply too rotten. Whatever deeper thoughts or emotions dwell within Mineta are irrelevant when he acts in such a lewd, awful way. It's no wonder that he's done so poorly in the popularity polls.

Best: Bakugo keeps showing new sides

When Katsuki Bakugo was first introduced, he seemed like a pretty standard antagonist to Izuku Midoriya's protagonist. He certainly started out as an aggressive bully and later rival to Izuku, but as the series has continued, it's become clear that there's more to Bakugo than meets the eye. For starters, there's his hero worship of All Might; like Izuku, he wants to live up to All Might's example as a great hero, but they differ in important ways. Izuku admires All Might for his ability to help, while Bakugo admires All Might for his ability to win. Once it's made clear how important constant success and victory is to Bakugo, all of his cruel actions make sense. He was a bully to Midoriya because he felt condescended to in a way that All Might never would.

Crucially, My Hero Academia has shown Bakugo's steady evolution into a considerate hero-in-training while never shying away from his past behavior as a cruel bully. It's an incredibly thoughtful approach to a trope that's been handled with far less care in other anime, building a genuine rivalry and friendship between two characters who both idolize the same hero. Through his friendships with Kirishima and Todoroki, Bakugo's revealed a much more interesting character lurking underneath his loud, explosive facade.

Worst: All for One is more like all for none

The best characters in My Hero Academia are the ones who show hidden layers as the series has continued. Creator Kohei Horikoshi is absolutely brilliant at seeding small details and plot developments organically within moments that likely pass unnoticed by inattentive readers. Many of the best characters in the series started out looking like obvious pastiches or cliches only to reveal a surprising depth.

Unfortunately, All for One, the arch-nemesis of All Might and seeming "Big Bad" of the series, hasn't revealed any particularly noteworthy attributes. His Quirk, which allows him to steal and combine other people's Quirks, is a fairly standard power set for a final anime villain, and his character design isn't nearly as innovative or engaging as other characters. There's some intrigue to the idea that he accidentally started the One for All Quirk succession, but how he feels about creating his eternal nemeses or whether he mourns his brother haven't really been explored. He might have had a nice-looking fight against All Might in season 3, but there haven't been enough twists to his character to make him more interesting. In a show that's consistently surprised viewers, All for One is about as standard as you can get.

Best: Twice shows how dangerous Quirks can be

While the series is largely about superheroes — the characters who put the "hero" in My Hero Academia — there's plenty of screentime for the villains too. One villain in particular, Twice, has become one of the most interesting characters in the show. Twice has the power to make a copy of anything that he knows the exact measurements of. It's a Quirk that has seemingly no limit, since he can constantly duplicate himself and anyone or anything else that he likes. Despite the handy Quirk, Twice is also completely insane, having cloned himself so many times that he's unsure whether he's the original or just a clone. Twice's mental instability makes him a ticking time bomb for the heroes; if he ever conquers his fear and really takes advantage of his power, he'd be nearly unstoppable.

He also shows the less pleasant side of world filled with Quirks — not every superpower is going to be beneficial. Finally, Twice offers a different vibe than most of the League of Villains, who are usually somber and moody, or over-the-top excited. Twice, minus his Quirk and mental issues, is a relatively normal, friendly guy. He's just a normal guy who was so horrified at the existential dread of possibly being a copy of himself that he basically became Deadpool.

Worst: Mustard is just completely forgettable

Don't be concerned if you don't even remember Mustard, one of the villains who invaded the training camp in order to kidnap Bakugo. While the other League of Villains members get moments to showcase their unique skills and personalities, Mustard is pretty handily defeated by the also-rans of class 1-B. His Quirk allows him to emit sleeping gas over a large area, but Mustard himself isn't immune to it. That means that he has to wear a gas mask in order to keep from getting knocked out by his own power. That's a pretty silly weakness to begin with, but it gets worse. He's so completely punked by the 1-B students that he hasn't been mentioned or shown onscreen since his defeat. He was only a stepping stone for side characters to show that they mattered to the story, too. We can't all be winners, but Mustard seems like a born loser.

Best: Stain takes a parody just far enough

At first glance, Stain seems like an over-the-top parody of the gritty anti-heroes that filled the pages of '90s superhero comics. On second and third glance, that seems to be consistent, especially when he's enacting brutal vengeance on heroes that he deems unworthy of their status. In fact, "brutal vengeance" is the name of more story arcs in '90s superhero fiction than you can possibly imagine. However, Stain's existence in the world of My Hero Academia allows for a wider perspective of the ethicality of superheroism; up to this point in the story, villains were simply criminals who wanted to do evil. Stain's very specific ethos allows for the consideration that "villainy" in Academia has more to do with frustrations against the status quo than entirely devious motivations.

Interestingly, his role in the story also works well with his visual parody of '90s ninjas — he provides a bloodthirsty alternative to both heroism and villainy, which leads to at least two impressionable teens to follow his example simply because he's cool. That's a hilarious way to reference the violent examples of '90s superhero comics without actually devolving into full-blown comedy.

Worst: Ojiro's tale has been boring

There are a lot of characters in My Hero Academia; between the pro heroes, the villains, the teachers at U.A., the students at U.A., the students at other hero-training high schools, and the unrelated vigilantes, there's simply not enough time to fully explore every character. Even the ostensible main roster of characters, the students of U.A. class 1-A, don't all get equivalent screen time. Still, even the more minor characters have still gotten to shine more than Ojiro Mashirao. Ojiro's a martial arts practitioner with a Quirk that gives him a prehensile tail. It's not the most exciting Quirk, but in fairness, Ojiro isn't the most exciting character. His relative plainness has been played for laughs, and has largely been the only character detail that he's gotten. There's plenty of possibility in a character that just works harder than his more talented peers, but we haven't really seen that in the anime or the manga. Even in a world where anyone can be a hero, it seems like some people are still just average.

Best: Eraserhead is more than just a cool visual

Eraserhead has a bit of an edge over most of the other characters in My Hero Academia when it comes to ranking the best and worst. For starters, he's class 1-A's homeroom teacher, which means he spends the most amount of time with the most important characters, giving him plenty of screentime. For another, his Quirk, which allows him to shut off other Quirk users' powers when he's looking at them, is useful without feeling like a cheat. Finally, he's got one of the coolest visuals in the series, with his goggles and all-black outfit.

However, there's more to Eraserhead than meets the eye, so to speak. He's aware of how relatively weak his Quirk is compared to someone like All Might, so he's compensated for it by training his intellect and body. He's basically the Batman of My Hero Academia, if instead of constantly brooding and figuring out how to kill Superman, Batman spent his time training youths to fight crime. So, really, just the Robin parts of Batman.

Worst: Spinner works as a TMNT joke and not much else

The hero killer Stain made a big impact in My Hero Academia, both on the readers and the characters. Spinner, who later joins the League of Villains after being inspired by Stain, considers himself the embodiment of Stain's legacy. Hilariously, Spinner's Quirk makes him a human lizard, while his costume is clearly styled after Stain. In a way, Spinner is a visual callback to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, who were themselves a parody of ninja mutant comics like Daredevil and X-Men. Having Stain, who's basically a mix of Punisher and Daredevil, inspire Spinner, who's basically a mix of Stain and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, is pretty funny. However, while there's some clever visual humor going into Spinner's character, that's all he's really showed in the story. Even in the villain showcase arc in the manga, Spinner doesn't get any of the same standout character beats or intriguing power upgrades that his cohorts in the League of Villains do. He's just not interesting enough to land any higher on a ranking of the best characters in My Hero Academia.