So, we all just got trolled.
Last week, when Chapter 335 of My Hero Academia was released, I considered doing a review of it after the cliffhanger reveal that Tooru Haguakure was supposedly the UA traitor.
I had mixed opinions about this apparent reveal when it happened.
On the one hand, Tooru being the traitor lacked any emotional impact because she is one of the most underdeveloped characters in Class 1-A, heck, in the entire story.
But, on the other hand, her being the traitor would allow Horikoshi to flesh out her character and actually provide her with something memorable.
Despite my mixed feelings about this supposed reveal, though, I decided not to review the chapter and just wait until the next one, where Horikoshi would undoubtedly expand on the traitor plotline.
That way, I could see what he planned to do with this twist, so I could fully judge it.
Well, after reading Chapter 336, “Villain,” I can say that I am glad I waited for this chapter to talk about the traitor storyline because Horikoshi played us all magnificently.
It turns out the Tooru cliffhanger was actually a red herring.
She was actually tracking down the true traitor who is Yuga Aoyama.
This is revealed in a great full page spread of his distraught face, followed up by the explanation for why he betrayed UA.
As it turns out, Aoyama was born Quirkless, much like Izuku, so his parents made a deal with All For One.
He would give Aoyama a Quirk and then, in return, Aoyama would spy on UA, or All For One would kill his parents.
I actually find this reveal to be a lot more emotionally impactful than one of the UA students actually being a villain sympathiser because, despite what he claims at the end of the chapter, Aoyama is not a villain but a victim.
He has been put in this terrible situation by the decisions of his parents and now has to protect them, while betraying his friends.
However, despite this, he still strives to be a hero and has done heroic things.
This can be seen most of all in the forest attack, where Aoyama attacked Mr Compress, allowing his classmates to rescue Tokoyami.
Aoyama did this knowing full well that it could put himself and his family in danger but he did it to protect his friends and make up for the terrible situation he had put them all in.
Then, there’s his previously established friendship with Izuku, where he sought to get to know him because of how he thought they were similar, both having Quirks that hurt them.
Well, it now turns out that Aoyama is way more similar to Deku than first thought because they directly parallel one another with this reveal.
Deku was given his power by a hero and Aoyama by a villain, yet both both are striding towards the same goal: to be heroes.
I hope that Aoyama can find some redemption and truly achieve his goal in the process.
As for Tooru not being the traitor, I will admit that I am a little disappointed that she is probably going to remain the same boring character by not being the traitor, but Aoyama is still the better choice and his story now directly parralels with Deku and the themes of the story.
As for the rest of “Villain,” it is short but decent, beginning with Class 1-A training and discussing why All For One will not be tracked down so easily.
It is the Aoyama reveal where the real cheese of this chapter is.
I just have my fingers crossed that this plot twist has some significant consequences and is not just going to be wrapped up in a few chapters, given the breakneck pace Horikoshi has been taking the story recently.
For now, though, I have to praise Horikoshi once more.
You tricked us all, you delightful troll.
So, we all just got trolled.