My Hero Academia stars Izuku Midoriya, the boy born without a Quirk. After meeting his personal hero All Might, he obtained the power of One For All, and now, he’s using that great power to challenge the world’s mightiest villains. How is Izuku’s track record shaping up so far?

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Izuku is a compelling protagonist because he does not always get his way while he’s powerful and determined, and he learns critical lessons from his shortcomings and defeats. Izuku’s record isn’t perfect, but that’s what makes him well-balanced, and he’s only getting better as he goes. Five particular battles stand out so far in the anime, and Izuku is fighting for his life in each one.

10 Izuku Vs Shoto Todoroki

The U.A. sports festival was a story arc where many characters showed off their powers for the first time, and only the best of the best can proceed into the tournament’s final stages. Izuku had already defeated Hitoshi Shinso, and the next challenger was Shoto Todoroki himself.

This was no ordinary battle. Shoto was born with incredible talent but refused to use its full potential, contrasting sharply with the born-Quirkless Izuku, who worked hard to reach greater heights. It’s talent vs. hard work, and only one trainee hero can win.

9 Who Won: Shoto Todoroki, Knocking Izuku Out Of The Sports Festival Tournament

Shoto fails his exams on My Hero Academia

Izuku implored Shoto to take this fight seriously and use the full extent of his ice/fire Quirk and overcome the mental barriers he’d set up for himself. Shoto listened to Izuku’s heartfelt words and finally fired up his Quirk’s left half.

Izuku brought all of One For All’s power to the fore, and the hero teacher Cementoss had to intervene before Shoto and Izuku killed each other. In the end, Shoto was exhausted but still standing, while Izuku had been knocked out of the arena’s boundaries. Score one for raw talent.

8 Izuku Vs. Muscular, The Powerhouse Villain

Later, during the forest training arc, the League of Villains made its next move. The objective was to capture Katsuki Bakugo, and the vanguard squad was ordered to keep the students and teachers busy. That included the brawny villain known as Muscular.

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Muscular went off on his own and wandered around the nearby cliffs, coming across the lone child Kota. Little Kota had no idea what to do until Izuku arrived and swore to keep the boy safe from this imposing villain. It was time for a melee showdown.

7 Who Won: Izuku Midoriya, With A Miraculous Smash Attack

Izuku was in for the fight of his life, even if he had One For All on his side. He used Full Cowling and 5% Smash to fight Muscular, and while Izuku did some damage, this wasn’t Muscular’s final form. The brawny villain activated the full extent of his Quirk, and the tables turned.

Kota watched in horror as Muscular bore down on Izuku with his full strength until Kota used his water-based Quirk to distract Muscular for a few seconds. Then, Izuku went to Plus Ultra and used an incredible 1,000,000% Smash to win the day, albeit very narrowly.

6 Izuku Vs Katsuki Bakugo

Izuku and Bakugo had been rivals for some time now, but Izuku didn’t take the idea seriously, while Bakugo had an unhealthy attitude about it. By now, Bakugo was in agony with resentment and shock about Izuku’s sudden growth, and he confronted Izuku about it one night.

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This was no friendly chat. Bakugo felt more competitive than ever, and Izuku wasn’t telling him the whole story, so the meeting soon came to blows. Izuku doesn’t like senseless violence, but he had no choice but to fight. Bakugo meant business.

5 Who Won: Bakugo, Until All Might Arrived

Izuku about to fight bakugo

Izuku mustered all his strength and pitted it against the formidable power of Bakugo’s martial arts and Explosion Quirk. The two boys fought bitterly to outmaneuver and outsmart the other. Izuku is a sharp tactical thinker, but so is Bakugo.

In the end, while Izuku dealt some impressive damage to his powerhouse friend, he couldn’t handle the full extent of Bakugo’s power and was forced to submit. That was when All Might himself arrived and helped his two students talk things out at last.

4 Izuku Vs Overhaul, The Yakuza Boss

Overhaul In His Monstrous Form Fighting Midoriya

In Season 4, a brand-new villain took center stage: Overhaul, the boss of a crime organization and the mastermind behind the Quirk-suppressing drug. Izuku and Mirio Togata both felt guilty about not rescuing the young Eri when they had an opportunity, but then they got a second chance.

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From the beefy Fat Gum to Rock Lock and Ryukyu, many pro heroes were ready to launch a heavy raid against Overhaul’s gang, and Izuku was right there on the front lines. Once Mirio fell to Overhaul, it was up to Izuku to save the day.

3 Who Won: Izuku, With Eri’s Help

Izuku stood little chance against Overhaul at first, but he was fiercely determined to rescue Eri, and what is more, Eri’s own Quirk was coming into play. She could reverse bodily injuries, among other effects, and this bought Izuku a chance to win.

Izuku pushed himself to new heights with his Full Cowling 100% ability and delivered an incredible kick to his oversized opponent in midair. Then, he struck Overhaul’s face with a Smash, and Overhaul was down for the count.

2 Izuku Vs. Gentle Criminal

Deku Struggling Against Gentle Criminal - My Hero Academia

Not long after Izuku defeated Overhaul, another villain appeared: Gentle Criminal, the man who just wanted fame and admiration via YouTube. However, Gentle Criminal was a problem since his plans would ruin the U.A. school festival, an event that Eri had been looking forward to.

Izuku couldn’t stand the idea of Eri missing out, so he took it upon himself to confront Gentle Criminal off of U.A.’s campus and deal with this threat before it became an even bigger security issue. But Gentle wouldn’t go down without a fight.

1 Who Won: Izuku Midoriya, With Grace & Finesse

Gentle Criminal could turn anything, even the air, rubbery and bouncy with his Quirk, and he used this ability to jump around and block Izuku with patches of hard air. Izuku didn’t need much time to find a counter-attack, though, and got the edge over Gentle.

So, the petite La Brava used her own Quirk to energize Gentle Criminal with the power of her love, and Izuku had to get totally serious this time. A mighty Shoot Style, St. Louis Smash attack sealed the deal, and Gentle was captured at last. Fortunately, none of this caused the U.A. school festival to be shut down, and Izuku returned to campus just in time for the festivities.

NEXT: Hunter x Hunter: 5 Best Fights (& Who Won Them)

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