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"Victory or Defeat" is the twentieth episode of the My Hero Academia anime and the seventh episode of Season 2.

Summary

The first match of the first round is underway, with Izuku stopped in his tracks. Shota Aizawa and Present Mic talk a little bit about Hitoshi's history and about his Quirk. Hitoshi orders Izuku to go out of bounds. Izuku then turns around and starts to walk out of the arena. In his head, Izuku tries to stop himself but his body is moving on its own accord and is starting to lose consciousness. He then remembers that Mashirao told him about Hitoshi's Quirk before the match. Mashirao told him a strong bump could break the spell. He then goes on to tell Izuku to win the match for him.

Suddenly, eight mysterious eyes pop out of the dark in front of Izuku. Izuku starts to freak out and wonders what is happening to his fingers. Izuku activates One For All and his enhanced fingers strike his stomach with brute force, breaking Hitoshi's spell. Hitoshi becomes confused by how he was able to break out of it. Izuku then remembers that All Might said One for All was passed down through the ages and hypothesizes that those people could be previous users of One For All.

Hitoshi then tries to get Izuku to talk to him again by taunting, but Izuku remains silent, now knowing that answering Hitoshi will result in him being brainwashed by Hitoshi again. Hitoshi says that he was born with a Quirk unfit for combat, telling Izuku that a combat Quirk user like him will never understand how he feels. However, while running towards Hitoshi, Izuku understands Hitoshi's situation as he himself was in a similar situation (he was born without a Quirk and thus he was also unfit for combat like Hitoshi) before he received One For All. Izuku reaches Hitoshi and begins pushing him out of the ring, but Hitoshi retaliates by punching Izuku in the face. Despite this, Izuku continues to push Hitoshi out of the ring. Hitoshi grabs Izuku's neck but Izuku counters by grabbing Hitoshi's arm and then throws Hitoshi over his shoulder, slamming Hitoshi hard into the ground and in the process, causes Hitoshi's feet to go out of bounds, which ends the battle. Izuku is declared the winner and advances to the second round.

Lying on the ground, defeated, Hitoshi remembers his past; where people at his previous school, Naboo Junior High, disliked his Quirk due to its villainous nature. After the crowd cheers for the combatants, Izuku questions Hitoshi as to why he wants to join the Department of Heroics. Hitoshi replies and says that he can't help what he truly longs to be. The students of the General Department applaud Hitoshi's efforts while some people in the crowd comment on the usefulness of Hitoshi's Quirk against villains. Hitoshi declares that one day he will enter the Department of Heroics and show everyone that he will become a better hero than Izuku and the others. Hitoshi tells Izuku to not lose too pitifully and leaves.

In Recovery Girl's Office, Izuku has his minor injuries attended to. Izuku tells All Might about the mysterious figures he saw while being brainwashed. All Might says that he also saw something similar to what Izuku experienced in his younger days. All Might theorizes that what Izuku saw were the imprints of those who wielded One For All in the past. All Might remarks that instead of the imprints, it was Izuku's own willpower that activated One For All to help him break free of Hitoshi's brainwash. Izuku isn't satisfied with the explanation, but All Might tells Izuku not to dwell on it and tells him to go and watch the next match. After Izuku leaves, Recovery Girl comments to All Might that Izuku also saw him, to which All Might remarks that it's a good thing.

On his way to his first round match, Shoto encounters his father, Endeavor, and tries to ignore him. Endeavor tells his son that he is disappointed with his behavior and reminds him of his duty to surpass All Might, ordering him to stop fooling around. Shoto declares to his father that he will never use his fire power and will only rely on his mother's power. Endeavor replies to his defiant son that while his tactic may work now in high school, he will eventually be pushed to the point of being forced to use it, much to Shoto's fury.

The second match of the first round between Shoto Todoroki and Hanta Sero begins. Hanta wraps his tape around Shoto, hoping to get him out of bounds. However, a furious Shoto creates a massive pillar of ice in retaliation, completely immobilizing Hanta and freeing himself in the process. Hanta, unable to move at all, is declared the loser and Shoto is declared the winner, thus moving on to the second round. Shoto goes to the nearly frozen Hanta, apologizes for what he did and thaws him out with his fire power. Izuku notes that the image of seeing Shoto using his fire power to melt his ice seemed immensely sad to him.

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