Bakugo’s very deliberate choice of words in his introduction to All for One summarizes how far he’s come as a character in My Hero Academia.
- Bakugo embracing the nickname “Kacchan” shows how much he has grown and accepted his friendship with Midoriya.
- The use of “Kacchan” is a term of endearment that implies a close relationship.
- Bakugo’s acceptance of “Kacchan” symbolizes his acceptance of his identity as a hero and a friend, and signifies the end of his rivalry with Midoriya.
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Warning: Spoilers for My Hero Academia, Chapter #406Bakugo has come a long way in My Hero Academia, and one of the biggest signifiers of his growth occurred in chapter #406, where Bakugo used a particular nickname to refer to himself that he’s never really embraced before. That name, of course, is Deku’s preferred nickname for him: Kacchan.
The name “Kacchan” is derived from Katsuki Bakugo’s first name, with the first syllable (“Ka”) followed by the diminutive yet friendly suffix, -chan. It’s a term of endearment that implies a close, friendly relationship between two characters, so it’s always been a bit odd that Midoriya is the main person who refers to him as such, likely a holdover from when they were younger and got along better. Midoriya’s continued use of the nickname, even after being slapped with the insulting name “Deku,” which essentially translates to “worthless,” showed that he still thought of Bakugo as a friend, even in spite of the boy’s constant bullying.
Bakugo’s Embrace of “Kacchan” Proves How He’s Grown
In the past, Bakugo has disliked the name Kacchan, at least coming from Midoriya, and his distaste for it kept the term from spreading to his other classmates, who have occasionally tried to use it. The fact that he would introduce himself as Kacchan, and to All for One of all people, is pretty surprising. It seems that Bakugo has accepted the name, in much the same way that Midoriya accepted the name that Bakugo gave to him–Deku. While Bakugo probably doesn’t intend to change his hero name or anything like that, the fact that he was willing to own it at all proves that he’s come a long way from the earliest days in Class 1-A.
There are, of course, some differences here; Kacchan was never the insult that “Deku” was, for example, and other people besides Midoriya have used it (including all of Bakugo’s other childhood friends). Still, the moment is clearly meant to have some significance as a note to end the chapter on, and in the present era of the series, the only person who really uses that name is Midoriya. It could also symbolize a revitalization of Bakugo’s resolve now that he’s back up on his feet. After all, he was recognized by his hero All Might (who respected him enough to use his hero name) and entrusted with an incredibly important task; Bakugo may well be so overjoyed he feels like that child again.
Whatever the intent, the use of “Kacchan” clearly calls to mind Midoriya using that nickname, and Bakugo’s acceptance of it comes across as something like a final acceptance of who he is in his entirety. Bakugo can be both a hero and a friend, with the latter arguably the title he’s struggled with the most. The personal nature of such a nickname might also convey a bit of disrespect towards All for One, something driven home by the insult to All for One which accompanies the announcement of his identity. By referring to himself as “Kacchan,” Bakugo seems set to bury one of My Hero Academia‘s longest lasting rivalries, finally cementing Bakugo and Midoriya as real friends.
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