Though they seem to be unlikely cohorts at first, MHA’s Tomura Shigaraki and The Incredibles’ Screenslaver have surprisingly similar ideologies.
Though it’s a seemingly odd comparison at first, closer inspection makes it painstakingly clear that My Hero Academia’s Tomura Shigaraki has a lot in common with Incredibles 2’s Screenslaver, aka Evelyn Deavor.
For starters, both villains strongly believe a society of heroes has made common civilians who rely on them critically, pathetically weak. Screenslaver centered technology as a core part of the issue, while Shigaraki makes his point around Quirk discrimination and societal isolation. And while both go overboard in their tactics, they do successfully point out valid flaws within their respective societies. Let’s compare and contrast these unlikely cohorts and how their ideologies overlap, with one being slightly more relevant to the real world.
My Hero Academia’s Tomura Shigaraki
The main antagonist in MHA, Tomura Shigaraki originally wanted to destroy society and rebuild it from the ground up, reshaping it to embed his own twisted sense of justice. To achieve this, his main goal was to kill All Might, the Symbol of Peace, whose smiles and promises to save everyone always felt like a lie to him. Thus, he wished to tear apart everything All Might represents. Shigaraki bears a strong hatred toward a world that’s hurt him, but after he regains the memories of his childhood in Season 5, the reasons behind these feelings become clear and his conviction changes.
At the age of four, Shigaraki manifests a rare mutation Quirk that is too powerful for his child self to even hope to control. Upon its creation, Shigaraki is filled with many negative emotions that directly feed into his Quirk. Subsequently, he ends up killing his entire family and destroying his home. Now an orphan, Shigaraki roams the streets, hurt and confused. Many civilians notice him, but refuse to extend a helping hand in hopes that a hero would come along instead, casting aside this broken child who doesn’t fit in. During his childhood, no heroes came to save Shigaraki, only the villainous All for One.
Upon remembering his origin, Shigaraki recalls the pain and suffering he endured as a child. As such, he alters his goal from reshaping society to completely destroying it. Abandoned by society and heroes, he develops a nihilistic outlook on the world and a strong loathing for life in general (with the exception of his allies), believing society is beyond saving.
Incredibles 2’S Evelyn Deavor (Screenslaver)
The mastermind behind the puppet Screenslaver in Incredibles 2, Evelyn Deavor uses her genius for inventing to ensure Supers remain illegal forever. She attempts to accomplish this by brainwashing Elastigirl and other Supers to sabotage her brother, Winston, who desperately wants to bring them back into the limelight. Screenslaver’s attacks appear without aim at first, but they are merely a lure for Elastigirl.
Evelyn’s father was a huge fan and supporter of Supers. Shortly after they became illegal and were forced to go underground, robbers broke into their home. Knowing Supers were completely cut off from their heroic lifestyles, he still attempted to call the emergency lines but received no answer; he was shot and killed after being found on the phone, while Evelyn’s mother passed away from heartbreak a few months later. Evelyn argues their deaths were preventable and that if her father had taken their mother to the safe room, they would both be alive today.
Screenslaver and Evelyn point out society’s over-dependence on whatever is convenient. In particular, Screenslaver emphasizes technology and media influencing our desire to remain passive and safe. Things cannot be presented raw, but need to be packaged nicely in a way that’s easy to digest. Even if we know something is wrong, we’ll still choose it if it’s the easier option. Evelyn brings this point back to Supers and how society’s heavy reliance on heroes makes them less likely to act or think for themselves.
How Shigaraki & Screenslaver Compare
Shigaraki was left to die as civilians hoped a hero would save him, whereas Evelyn lost her parents after her father thought Supers would come and save the day. While the rise of heroes can be an incredible thing, strengthening parts of society and passing on their own ambitions, they can also produce wider cracks in the system, unintentionally creating victims by subconsciously encouraging a more negligent society. Both Shigaraki and Evelyn are proof that severe consequences can arise by their presence. As such, they both form ideologies that address these flaws with the goal to exterminate their current society.
Although Shigaraki’s ideology in My Hero Academia does draw comparison to the real world, Evelyn’s does so more accurately and is even an outright correct assessment of it. Relating convenience not just to others, but to technology and consumerism is extremely prevalent to the world today. That being said, while Incredibles 2 did a great job of bringing these issues to light, the film does not offer any kind of solution, rather allowing these issues to prevail.
Though it relatees less to the real world, Shigaraki’s past with Quirk discrimination and societal isolation are more likely to be properly addressed later in My Hero Academia since the protagonist, Izuku Midoriya, is also a victim of the bias created by a superhero and Quirk-driven society.