My Hero Academia: 8 times Horikoshi was inspired by Marvel Comics

My Hero Academia has more Marvel references than you may believe (Image via Sportskeeda)
My Hero Academia has more Marvel references than you may believe (Image via Sportskeeda)

Kohei Horikoshi, the creator of My Hero Academia, is a massive Marvel and DC comics fan. American Superheroes are some of the major inspirations he had while creating his series, something that is easy for any fan to spot.

While both comic book houses have equal representation inside My Hero Academia, there is no denying that Marvel is slightly more popular amongst fans all over the world. Because of this, it is sometimes easier to find out what kind of characters or events in the series were inspired by Marvel Comics.

With so many iconic characters and moments that Marvel comics have gifted fans, it is no wonder Horikoshi portrays his love for this franchise inside his work. To better illustrate this, here are 10 times Marvel and its characters gave Horikoshi the inspiration for My Hero Academia.

Disclaimer: This article reflects the author’s opinion and contains spoilers.

Tsuyu and Spider-Man and 7 other concepts in My Hero Academia influenced by Marvel

1) Twice / Deadpool

Wade Wilson, aka Deadpool, is a Marvel antihero that does not need an introduction, seeing as it is one of the most popular characters in the world. Deadpool is extremely beloved amongst fans because of his quirky personality and constant fourth wall breaks. He is not the sanest individual in the world but that only adds to his charm.

Twice, one of the fallen members of the League of Villains, not only looks like Deadpool, but he also has an extremely similar personality. Both Twice and Deadpool are morally gray individuals who have suffered greatly because of their powers.

Both characters suffer from a dissociative personality disorder, as well as being amongst the craziest members of their respective teams. If Twice and Deadpool were to ever meet, both My Hero Academia and Marvel’s universes should fear.

2) Mei’s power armor / Iron Man 2

Mei is the Tony Stark of My Hero Academia (Image via Studio Bones)
Mei is the Tony Stark of My Hero Academia (Image via Studio Bones)

While Mei is a brilliant inventor who Izuku trusts with his life, her prototypes are not always as reliable as her finished products. One such example comes in the form of a power armor she had Izuku test for her.

The suit worked perfectly for a few seconds before malfunctioning and twisting Izuku’s body, almost snapping his spine. This is a clear reference to Iron Man 2’s trial scene, where Tony complains about governmental agencies copying his work.


One of the videos Tony submitted as proof of this accusation showed a soldier using an armor, almost identical to Mei’s, which broke down in the middle of testing and destroyed his spine. Iron Man 2 is probably the worst movie in Tony Stark’s trilogy, which is why this reference was missed by many fans.

3) Jurota Shishida / Beast

An animalistic appearance and instincts do not always equal a low IQ, as proven by X-men member Henry McCoy, aka Beast. When people see Beast for the first time, they expect the mutant to be dumb and aggressive, only to be surprised by its intellectual and passive nature.

Henry was born with an appearance almost identical to that of an ape, giving him superhuman strength, speed, and agility. He is one of the founding members of the X-men, as well as one of its most loyal members.

As a tribute to this amazing character, Horikoshi created Jurota Shishida, a member of My Hero Academia’s class 1-B. Jurota is also an exceptionally smart individual who people often confuse with a mindless beast. He is also known for having a complex lexicon that not everyone can understand, just like Beast.

4) Tsuyu Asui / Spider-Man

Spider-Man is another one of Marvel’s most classic and beloved heroes, with a loyal fanbase that has supported him for decades. Spider-Man is very popular, and even his theme song is recognized all around the world. The well-known words “Does whatever a spider can” have been heard by almost everyone in the world at least once.

Horikoshi, being the comic fan he is, could not ignore this famous phrase when working on My Hero Academia and created a homage for it when introducing Tsuyu. When her Quirk was explained to the viewers, it was stated that she can do whatever a frog can, which was inspired by the arachnid hero.

Still, this is not the only aspect of Tsuyu’s character that Horikoshi based on Spider-Man. Tsuyu’s iconic pose, where she squats with her arms between her legs, is another clear tribute to one of Marvel’s most popular heroes.

5) Bakugo’s T-shirt / The Punisher

Frank Castle, also known as the Punisher, is one of the most infamous anti-heroes Marvel has to offer. This cruel and unforgiving vigilante believes that the criminals do not deserve a second chance, killing most of his enemies almost instantly.

Punisher is the definition of extreme violence, going to any lengths to protect the people of his city while getting rid of criminals for good. It only makes sense that one of My Hero Academia’s most aggressive characters has a deep connection with the Punisher.

Bakugo Katsuki has the same anger issues Frank Castle does, although he has learned to manage them a little better. He has been seen several times using a black t-shirt with a white skull imprinted on it, just like the Punisher.

6) David and Melissa Shield / S.H.I.E.L.D.

All Might and Deku will always be grateful for the Shields (Image via Studio Bones)
All Might and Deku will always be grateful for the Shields (Image via Studio Bones)

No one inside Marvel’s world would ever get anything done without the assistance of the intelligence agency S.H.I.E.L.D. This organization has been tasked with protecting the world from the shadows for decades.

Not only do the members of this agency include extremely skilled spies and assassins, but also some of the most brilliant scientists. It is thanks to S.H.I.E.L.D.’s constant support that many heroes have the gadgets necessary to fight crime.

As their last names would imply, Melissa and her father David are the people in charge of representing S.H.I.E.L.D. inside My Hero Academia’s universe. They have been tasked with creating some of the most advanced support items for Heroes around the world, never once asking for credit for their actions.

7) Slice / Medusa

Marvel’s Inhumans may not be as popular as other hero teams inside the franchise, but they have some of the most powerful beings in the multiverse. As their queen, Medusa is obviously included in this group.

Her true name is Medusalith Amaquelin, a red-haired woman with an even temper and the power to control her hair at will. She is one of the most ardent defenders of the Inhuman Rights movement inside the Marvel universe.

Slice, from the movie My Hero Academia: Two Heroes, is inspired by this fair and powerful queen. Slice also has long, flowing red hair that she can control with her mind. She is also a very calm individual who fights fiercely for the people she cares about.

8) Aoyama / Cyclops

Superpowers are not always as easy to control as many Marvel comics would have you believe. Scott Summers, better known as X-men’s Cyclops, is living proof of this fact, as he has never been able to control the powerful kinetic energy rays that come from his eyes.

After awakening his mutant gene, Scott developed a connection with a different dimension filled with concentrated kinetic energy. Because of this enormous amount of power, he is unable to control his rays, having to use a visor or special shades to prevent his power from going crazy.

The only person who understands Scott’s suffering inside My Hero Academia is Yuga Aoyama, a character inspired by Scott. Aoyama is also incapable of controlling the lasers that constantly come out of his belly button. To prevent his power from destroying everything around Aoyama, he is always wearing a special belt with a crystal that contains his energy beams, like Scott’s visor.

In conclusion

My Hero Academia is the product of decades of work and effort from Horikoshi. It is amazing to see how much respect and admiration he has for the franchises and characters that inspired him to write his own story.

The tributes he creates for Marvel’s characters are simply outstanding, as you can see how much he loves them. Now, My Hero Academia will be a series that inspires others, so let’s hope in the future we will have some tributes created after Horikoshi’s amazing series.

Sportskeeda Anime is now on Twitter! Follow us here for latest news & updates.

Quick Links

Edited by Shreya Das
Be the first one to comment