My Hero Academia series creator Kohei Horikoshi has made a huge impact in both Japan and the West with My Hero Academia because the series blends manga creative sensibilities with the bold looks and personalities of Western superhero comics. This connection between the two often shows Horikoshi's love of superhero works with more direct tie-ins between the two types of media through references in some of the hero and villain designs. This is the case with the latest pro hero introduced in the latest Season 4 episode of the anime as well.
Episode 77 of the series brings the Shie Hassaikai arc to its official end, and with Overhaul being carted off to Tartarus following the fierce battle with Deku, he's soon attacked by the League of Villains. This includes the special pro hero tasked with escorting the police, the Sand Hero Snatch. Whose power set is a pretty close callback to the Spider-Man villain Sandman.
When Shigaraki, Dabi, and Mr. Compress attack Overhaul's police escort to prison, Dabi throws a burst of flame to destroy the first patrol car. But inside it is the Sand Hero Snatch who is able to block the flames with his sand. Shigaraki attempts to attack as well, but Snatch's sand powers are the perfect counter to Shigaraki's decay abilities.
But it becomes quickly apparent that only the top half of Snatch's body can turn into sand, and that ends up being his downfall in the battle. Compress is able to compress him into a marble because of this weakness, and it's implied that the pro hero will die as a result from this. So although Snatch is a reference to the Spider-Man villain Sandman, until the Marvel villain, the pro can't turn his entire body into sand.
If Snatch had an entire Sandman body, then perhaps he would've had a much better chance against the villains. But like Sandman's fights with Spider-Man in Marvel's line of comics, there's always a way around all of these powers. What did you think of this latest comic shout out? Are you enjoying My Hero Academia Season 4 so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or talk to me directly about all things anime and other cool things @Valdezology on Twitter!
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. If you wanted to check it out for yourself, you can currently find the series streaming on Crunchyroll and FunimationNOW. Funimation will also soon be bringing My Hero Academia's second big movie, Heroes Rising, to North America on February 26th.