The first arc of My Hero Academia’s 4th Season has concluded, which means analysis! The Overhaul Arc looks closely at the attempted rise of the yakuza leader, Kai Chisaki, as he attempts to change the framework of society in a way that nobody has attempted to do before in an age of heroes. In this episode, I will be looking closely at Chisaki / Overhaul’s philosophy, the role indeterminism has in this section of the narrative, how Tomura has become a more nuanced antagonist in this arc and more. On the side, I talk about my experiences with the donghua, To Be Hero (2016) and my urge to watch the new donghua, The Daily Life of the Immortal King (2020).
THERE ARE SPOILERS IN THIS EPISODE AND THE SHOW NOTES:
Thanks for reading the show notes.
Although you probably won’t realise, but I wanted to make this episode to challenge myself (in terms of thinking and production) and hence decided to construct this episode really quickly. This is an arc that is fresh in everyone’s minds (including mine) and I haven’t seen many analyses on Chisaki’s philosophy, so I might as well be the one to kick everything off! I worked hard on this episode and so I hope you enjoy it as well as understand my approach to the arc.
Plot Summary: The Overhaul Arc sees the rise (and then fall) of the antagonist known as Kai Chisaki (Overhaul), in his attempt to create a monopoly over the underworld and subsequently lead a revolution on society, due to its naturally hierarchical state.
Chisaki’s Philosophy: Chisaki’s philosophy (from what I understood of it) is a hybridised version of a few ideals; I deduced this down to elitism, a reversed form of social Darwinism and a dash of Marxism. This seems to make sense by the near-conclusion of the arc, when he refers to ‘hero pretenders’, his attempt to destroy ‘the natural order’ and undo the very ‘framework’ which society is based on. Chisaki functions almost as an intentional hypocrite in the final fight with Izuku, potentially illustrating his frustration with the corrupt principles our society is based on. This additionally nuances the motivation of our other, long-term protagonist, Tomura Shigaraki. However, I couldn’t get my head around his notion of ‘sentimentalism’ in relation to the hero world; what ideas is the current society romantic over? With that aside, what made Chisaki so special to me was the fact that he questioned the structures of the text; (although I don’t think this is an intentional ‘postmodern’ component that Horikoshi inserted within the narrative of the arc) what makes heroes ‘heroes’?
Indeterministic Determinism: The second biggest theme which came out of this arc for me was indeterminism vs. determinism (I don’t know whether I’m giving the arc too much credit in this area, but as a time travel freak, I’m fine with giving it that extra credit anyway). I feel that the arc made clear that indeterminism still has a place in a larger, deterministic narrative (which we can assume to be Izuku becoming ‘the greatest hero’, which now isn’t even certain). This is not to say that I think that Boku No Hero Academia has developed into an extremely profound story which has embraced a largely complex scientific (and arguably philosophical) concept, but I just thought it was a nice touch, whether this piece of analysis explains how this part of the plot made sense or not.
MUSIC IN THIS PRODUCTION:
(Guitar) Funky But On the Brink Of War by Alex McCulloch
Castle In The Darkness 2 by Alex McCulloch
Difference by chasersgaming
Go Lucky by chasersgaming
Mandatory Overtime by Joth
8-Bit Title Screen by Joth
Boku No Hero Academia 4th Season (MyAnimeList)
Boku No Hero Academia (Manga) (MyAnimeList)
Overhaul (My Hero Academia Wiki)
Rewind (My Hero Academia Wiki)
Kai Chisaki (My Hero Academia Wiki)
Shie Hassaikai Arc (My Hero Academia Wiki)
Social Darwinism (Wikepedia)