My Hero Academia Barred in China Following War Crimes Controversy

This week has been a stressful one for My Hero Academia. A few days ago, fans were happy to see the series put out a new chapter, but its first spread left plenty shocked. The name of one character was revealed at long last, but its subtext upset many given its tie to war crimes which Japan committed in World War II. Now, it seems China has responded to the controversy, and the nation did so quickly. After all, it turns out the manga has been removed temporarily from several of China's biggest online vendors and readers.

The report comes from China as ABACUS News confirms the removal is ongoing. It turns out Tencent and Bilbili have both removed My Hero Academia from its pages. According to Bilbili, the site removed the manga "in accordance with China's policies" while Tencent has yet to make any statement on the removal.

At this time, there is no word on whether the ban will be permanent. No timeline was given for the manga's removal, but fans can no longer access the manga through online libraries. Not long ago, both the creator of My Hero Academia and its publisher apologized for the incident. The name in question will be changed shortly, but many foreign fans are still shaken from the controversy.

The ordeal came when Dr. Ujiko had his true name revealed, and it is none other than Maruta Shiga. This offended readers as Maruta was often used as a codename in World War II by Japanese soldiers referring to victims of human experimentation. The country had divisions dedicated to do live vivisections and experiments on prisoners of war, leading to the deaths of thousands. Many Chinese and Korean citizens were killed in these experiments, so China has decided to remove My Hero Academia for its presumed reference.

According to creator Kohei Horikoshi, he had no ulterior motive when naming Dr. Ujiko. Now, the artist is set to reveal a new name for the character along with Shueisha, so here's to hoping the change will open My Hero Academia back up in China.


What do you make of this controversy? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime.

My Hero Academia was created by Kohei Horikoshi for Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump in 2014. The story follows Izuku Midoriya, who lives in a world where everyone has powers, even though he was born without them. Dreaming to become a superhero anyway, he's eventually scouted by the world's best hero All Might and enrolls in a school for professional heroes.

Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.