Which do you prefer?
3 members have voted
TL;DR I like Saitama more than Midoriya, and the themes of One Punch Man appeal to me more than My Hero Academia's. Also, hype culture is bad for any media.
I will try to make this blog post spoiler-free, so no worries about that. However, I can't guarantee anything I source will be spoiler-free, so discretion is still advised.
This blog entry was inspired from @Seshi and me talking on the Introduce Forums, found here. I tried to condense a lot of what I was thinking there, so hopefully it sounds more fluid here. Just to note, I'm going to call One Punch Man "OPM" and My Hero Academia as "BnHA"
So, Seshi is not the first person to ask me why I rate BnHA so lowly. I admitted that 3 and 4 might be a little harsh for something that actually feels like it has heart poured into it, (and that I plan to change these ratings when I read/watch more of the show) but I still heavily prefer OPM over it.
I find it interesting that these two are lumped together pretty frequently. Other than being action anime about hero organizations and ranks, I don't find them anything alike structurally. At their core, OPM is a meta-comedy with an overpowered main character that doesn't really get any stronger and BnHA is a battle shounen about progressively and constantly getting stronger.
Anyways, the question I get a lot is "why did you enjoy OPM, but not BnHA?" Answering this question means explaining why I like anime to begin with. Compared to western shows and movies, (where I find the characters completely disconnected and shallow) I can relate to anime characters in the weirdest ways, and the more I slowly understand about a character, the more I can appreciate who they are.
To give an example of this, Koyomi Araragi from the Monogatari series seems like a shallow character at first. However, as the series continues, more of his motivations and ideologies get revealed, which really made me admire his character and thought put into him.
As for Deku, I felt like we knew everything about him from the beginning. He's kind of a timid kid who works hard because he wants to be like All Might. For the two seasons I watched, he's kept this same personality throughout both seasons, and it doesn't seem like he's going to change.
I don't think this is necessarily bad writing, (many great works have no character development) but because of what I appreciate in anime, I don't like it when characters are shallow and unchanging. Conversely, I love when characters are deep or develop throughout the story, as it's showing that everyone can either change for the better, or is simply misunderstood.
To move the topic onto OPM, I actually found Saitama's character to be more than "I'm bald man that kill in one hit". There are actually already videos explaining why Saitama is a representation of a depressed worker that feels nothing due to the harsh nature of the Japanese workplace, but I won't go into that in this blog post. Instead, I'm just going to mention that Saitama has an enthralling relationship with the other heroes, particularly Fubuki, Genos, and King. The dichotomy he plays with these other heroes is something unique and unlike most anime I've seen.
The last thing I'd like to talk about here is the themes the two shows portray. From the first two seasons of BnHA, I found the theme to be "we shouldn't be afraid to follow in our predecessor's footsteps", especially in the second season with Todoroki. OPM, on the other hand, has a theme of "you should focus on improving yourself rather than comparing yourself to others", which is made apparent with characters like Genos and Glasses.
I can appreciate both of these themes, but OPM's appeals more to me. I hope this a lesson that everybody takes to heart, as many people (including myself) don't feel confident because they're not as good as others' at doing something.
I say screw that, be your own person. Are you a better person than you were yesterday?
If so, then that's all you need.
That's all for this post. Have any thoughts, questions, suggestions on this post or the next? Feel free to let me know, since I love talking and listening to others about anime. Don't be afraid to say something controversial, if it's what you truly believe.