I had to abandon the original intent of this post- discussing 2 series that ended rather recently. I tried to combine the 2 and tie them to the point that a lot of manga are ending sooner rather than later, and around the same time, signifying the “End Of An Era.” But those 2 were SO RADICALLY DIFFERENT that I had to abandon the idea. So instead; I thought I’d talk about a rather good chapter of “My Hero Academia!” This week; we learn the origins of Dabi!! My Hero Academia Chapter 350: “Bound To A Fiery Fate.” Let’s begin……
We begin this chapter in a Police Precinct- this particular Precinct being the one housing Gyuudai Garaki; All For One’s Physician and Right Hand Man. He asks the Gorilla Guard watching him if “The Big Day” has finally arrived(referring to the current Final War). And considering how little security detail he has on him today; he can gather that he’s right. And knowing that; he begins to reminisce about all of the preparation that went into this moment, as we then cut over to Dabi beginning to melt, and Poor Little Shoto Todoroki standing and watching.
This chapter reveals 2 important things for the series- both intrinsically tied together. So let’s discuss it a little more “naturally.” 11 Years Ago- Sekoto Peak: The Day That Touya Todoroki Burned Himself Alive. All that he could think about that as he began to char in his own flames is how badly he wanted to prove himself to his father- how badly he wanted to show him that he wasn’t a failure. And as his burnt corpse lie motionless in the lake; a figure in a top hat comes to collect him. You know em- you used to love em- You Love to Hate em, in all regards: All For One!!
Cut to the next scene: Touya wakes up in a Hospital- 3. Years. Later. His face scarred up from all the surgery that had to be done to replace his charred tissue, and even a different voice because his voice box was fried in the flames. He leaves his hospital room to find a number of other children. They happily tell the Doctor(who has a Sunflower for a head because okay), who tells him he can’t leave yet. But Touya is desperate to get home; he wants to apologize to his family for the awful things that he said to them. But that is not going to happen.
All For One speaks from a nearby monitor, telling him that he’s not the same person he was before. Not only did he have new skin grafted onto him in places and having to get a new voice altogether, but he also won’t be able to get his flames as hot as before; his power has been completely dampened. And even if pushes himself to the “limit;” he won’t be able to even process pain as properly now. He’s f*cked up from head to toe.
Being who he is; All For One takes the opportunity to try and control Touya by promising him his “Full Strength” if he were to stay here and be raised by him. But this is Touya Todoroki, and there is only 1 person in this world that he will EVER let “Raise” him. So he burned down the whole building down and escapes.
Back in the present, Garaki explains the whole point of characters such as Dabi and these other childrens: Spare Bodies. In case anything happened to Tomura before he was ready to accept All For One’s power; they were going to use this kids- these “twisted, warped seeds-” as back up vessels for All For One to take control of. They were cast out by society itself, and he had planned to use that to make them as vengeful as Tomura was, thus allowing him to do them what he’s doing to Tomura right now. But Touya was the only one who never gave into that control- he was the only person to ever reject the “Demon King.”
As such; they just let him go and sow his own brand of “Havoc.” But Dabi himself reveals to Shoto that he did come home at one point- only to see “the story” unfold without him. Endeavor moved on to train Shoto– and shrine erected to him stood in the corner of a room. From his perspective: They’d already moved on from him. So he made peace with “Touya’s” death as well, and thus- Dabi was born. Later on, when coming to get the Hooded High End to fight against Endeavor; Dabi reveals that he knew it was All For One and Ujiko that saved him. He asks Dabi how it is that he survived this long, to which Dabi just goes on to monologue:
Seeing this walking corpse here……. gives me a pretty decent idea of what you people were planning to do with me.
And I’m back now- because this seemed like the perfect place for my funeral.Touya Todoroki- The Ultimate Blight
Back in the present; Dabi tells Shoto that he “surpassed his limits,” and he describes it as “everything he’s built up is flipped around, upside down.” He honed his flames so much that his body continuously peeled away- but because his nerve endings were singed; he never really felt anything. He watched all of Endeavor’s battles- learned all his moves in preparation for this moment.
As his flames rise like never before; Ujiko tells the Guard that “Heat” is simply “energy born from all living things as the move and thrive.” Thus; this would be something essential for the Immortality Craving All For One. But Dabi’s flames were something that he- as the “Demon King-” wanted NO part in: The Frenzied Flame Of DEATH.
Back at the battle field; Dabi’s flames reach such heights that he begins melting the All Might statue at Ground Zero Kamino, and self cremate. He plans to use “that thing’s” own technique to take away everything that “it” holds dear- as proof of his existence. And Shoto begins to prepare his new move to counter that, bringing My Hero Academia Chapter 350 to a Resounding END!! A fire pun felt a little low at this point.
Dabi Is Everything That I Wanted Tomura To Be. I’m gonna keep it real with you guys: I am liking what Dabi’s role is in this story right now. Because of the members of the League still present; it’s been very clear that Best Girl Himiko chan and Tomura will be “saved,” with debates on whether Tomura will die or not while I’m almost certain that Himiko chan will live(in a Jail Cell, but alive all that same). Spinner will probably just end up in prison; All For One will die; I don’t think Horikoshi has ANY PLANS for Kurogiri/ Shirakumo at this juncture; and the rest that haven’t died will either get killed here or locked up and we’ll continue not to care.
But then you have Dabi– The Bane Of The Todoroki Family; Endeavor’s Ultimate Failure as a Hero, A Father, and even as a Human Being. There is no salvation for him. This battlefield is where he will die; where he will “leave his mark on the world” so that Endeavor- so that his family- can’t just relegate his memory to a mere shrine in some other room in their house. They are going to remember what comes next for years to come- Shoto being front and center above all else.
But back to what I was saying; he is everything that I wanted from Tomura by the end of the story. He’s……… Irredeemable. There will come no “salvation” for Touya Todoroki; we will not see some Little Kid vestige of him that Izuku is going to have to reach out for. His development has been much more low key than his leader, but let it be know that he has become a True Villain, whereas Tomura went from a “Spoiled Brat” to “Nuisance” to “Villain” and “Super Villain-” only for Horikoshi to relegate him to nothing more than a Meat Puppet for All For One, who isn’t all that interesting anymore. But ranting about THAT anymore would be “beating a dead horse.” Let’s just focus on Dabi.
When we first met Dabi; I didn’t really think to much about him. Then the Forest Training Camp happened and I hopped on the “Lost Todoroki Brother Train” with everyone else. I picked up the manga when that season ended, and seeing him have such an interaction with Endeavor only helped to cement that as an almost absolute fact. And during the whole “My Villain Academia” arc I was just waiting for a flashback that tells us that he’s a Todoroki. That never came, but I never really gave up hope. Then THAT chapter came out, and all I could say for days was “Dabi Is Touya- End Of Discussion.” Where am I going with all this?
I enjoyed the Todoroki’s storyline. And I was kind of looking forward to them taking out the Upper ranked Liberation Front members 1 at a time, with Dabi being the second-to-last OG member before going after Tomura himself– who at THAT point I thought would have killed All For One by then, reinforcing his care for the people who followed him to that point and having them all taken from him would only further push him away from society. I even had this idea that Himiko chan would play into his story by taking some of his blood when he died, but…….. that obviously won’t happen.
Another aspect that I’m liking is the mystery of how he’s survived for this long considering his quirk, and the reveal of how he survived on that day. A bit late and not foreshadowed enough, but that’s just “par the course” at this point. No, no; I like that he was another “Failed Vessel” for All For One because it continues the theme of him being a “Failure-” he couldn’t handle his own flames, so Endeavor just kept makin’ babies ’til he “got it right.” And now; he wasn’t even suitable to be a Back Up Plan for Tomura. Nobody wants him.
I’m trying to keep the complaining about the current state of the series to a minimum- to 1)Focus on the good aspects of what’s going on and 2)Leaving something to talk about amongst the inevitable “Fall of My Hero Academia” content to come out following the Final Chapter. Gotta keep it a little unique! But in any case: I say all this to say that Dabi has honestly proven to be a pretty good character. I may have said it once before, but I didn’t really care for him beyond the Touya theories. And honestly; the build up to this Final War felt like Horikoshi took the characters “Base” traits and amplified them- to the point where they felt like that was ALL to them.
Dabi had gone from this character shrouded in mystery that wanted to bring Stain’s “Ideal World” to fruition. But going into the Final Act saga……….. it feels like he’s missing that Stain-isms and is all about “Killing Daddy.” But seeing him here has been a welcomed change to the final part of the story. No redeeming this guy!!
But all that brings me to a point that they keep going back to: How has he been surviving? Beyond the symbolism of “The Grudge That Won’t Die;” how has he been able to walk around- use his quirk multiple times an arc- without succumbing to his own power? I’ve narrowed it down to 3 possibilities:
- All For One gave him a quirk to help reign in the flames a little.
- He’s succumbing to “Quirk Singularity” at the moment, and will become a being of “Pure Fire.”
- He got more of his mother’s quirk traits than anyone thought.
The first one is……………… honestly the most likely one. After all the surgery done to keep the boy alive; he gave him a quirk to help him deal with “Cremation-” a quirk that reinforces his body that’s finally reached its limit, or a Hyper Accelerated Healing quirk that allows him to heal faster rather than just straight up regeneration. Or who knows; Endeavor didn’t recognize Dabi’s flames after defeating that High End- and he would know Touya’s flames anywhere. So maybe he was given a quirk that was meant to stabilize his flames, and they ended up “merging” to create “Cremation.” Something like that.
The second idea is actually one from the Youtuber Vocal Pineapple Academia; he looked through the prequel series Vigilantes– a series that is getting ready to end- and found some interesting similarities between Dabi and the Central Antagonist of that series: No 6. It’s a theory that I really like and believe whole heartedly, based on the evidence he presented and how I’ve seen No 6 progress in that story. Thematically; they’re the same:
- Both were deemed “Failures” and cast aside by Endeavor and All For One respectively.
- Both were taken in by All For One, but got loose and started wreaking their own Havoc.
- Both have a strong desire to be “remembered-” to “leave a mark on the world that wouldn’t notice them.” No 6 just wants an identity; Dabi wants Endeavor to remember him forever.
- Both are insane, obsessive, calculating, and EXTREMELY motivated in their goals.
- “My Hero Academia” Loves the concept of “Parallelism.”
But in the physical sense(WARNING: Massive Spoilers For Vigilantes- My Hero Academia Illegals Up Ahead): No 6………. he……….He becomes Pure Energy. I ended up falling off of a lot of series when I had to take a few months off to get my eyes checked, so I don’t know exactly how it happened. But in chapter 113 of Vigilantes; we see No 6’s physical form dissipate to just his skeleton(specifically his upper torso and skull), while the rest of him is just this PURE ENERGY dedicated to killing Koichi. Read the series if you haven’t, but…………. it looks kind of familiar……..
The last idea is the idea of him getting more of Rei’s quirk traits than anyone thought. I once proposed the idea of the element Nitrogen being present in his flames- thus the blue coloration. I’m not sure about the science there(in fact; looking it up on google said that the flames would be yellow instead of blue), but I still think that Rei’s quirk is somewhat present in Touya. Maybe it helps “cool him down” after excessive usage, or it could be the thing that kept him from turning to ash the first time……………. The First 2 were more thought out, I guess.
WAY LATE. Like; I had to work on this while the series was on break to finish this. I had no intention of covering this chapter; this was just something that I wanted to talk about with you guys. Thanks for listening, as always. Let me know your own thoughts in the comments, and until the next post everyone- Have A Fantastically Wonderful Day. Laters!!