MHA: Does Deku Like Bakugo? Relationship Explained

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Throughout My Hero Academia’s entire storyline, fans quickly noticed that Izuku Midoriya (Deku) and Katsuki Bakugo have a complex relationship that gives off a lot of tension. Of course, some fans think that this tension is romantic even though they both tend to treat each other as rivals. So, does that mean that Deku likes Bakugo in My Hero Academia?

Deku likes Bakugo as a friend as he admires his fiery passion and indomitable will. He had always admired Bakugo’s headstrong approach to life, even though he was bullied and picked on by him when they were in middle school. And this is the reason why Deku sees Bakugo as a cherished rival and friend.

Although there are a lot of fans that love to ship male characters in anime, the thing is that Deku and Bakugo don’t romantically see each other as they are just friends and rivals that care for each other as brothers do. So, in a sense, Deku does indeed like Bakugo, but in a way, that’s more similar to admiration than love. That said, let’s look at the relationship between Deku and Bakugo.

Does Deku like Bakugo?

When we look at the characters of My Hero Academia, it is tough not to look at the relationship between Izuku Midoriya and Katsuki Bakugo. That’s because this seems to be a very complex relationship that focuses more on the dynamic between the two characters. And this is due in large part to the on-and-off “friendship” between them.

Starting as childhood playmates who were part of the same group of children that played together, Midoriya and Bakugo were friends who spent much time together. However, things changed in their friendship when Bakugo and the other kids started developing their Quirks while Midoriya remained Quirkless.

Izuku And Katsuki As Kids

Bakugo, who was the group’s ringleader during their childhood years, started picking on Midoriya because he didn’t have a Quirk and was seemingly useless. That was when he started calling him “Deku,” which pertained to the Japanese doll with no limbs. The doll’s lack of limbs makes it seem useless, which is why Bakugo calls Midoriya the Deku nickname.

Nevertheless, even after they got to middle school, Deku still saw Bakugo as someone he cared about as he even tried to save him from the slime villain that attacked them early in the storyline. Then, when they got to UA High School, Midoriya always tried to find a way to seek Bakugo’s recognition. He even took on the Deku nickname as his hero name because he wanted to eventually become strong enough to prove that he wasn’t useless.

This allowed fans to see a different kind of dynamic between Deku and Bakugo, as it was clear that there was a certain level of concern between them. On top of that, Deku always looked at Bakugo as someone he needed to impress by working harder than ever. So, does that mean that Deku likes Bakugo?

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In a way, Deku does indeed like Bakugo but not in a romantic way. Since they were children, Bakugo was always someone he looked up to because he was a natural leader when they were still young boys, and he was the leader of the group of children that played with one another. And as he got older, Bakugo’s headstrong and fearless nature was always something that Deku admired.

Bakugo always possessed a fiery personality that made him seem grumpy. But this personality was what always made him a man of great motivation. He has an indomitable will that not even All For One could break when he tried to recruit him into his group. As such, Deku admires this fact about Bakugo, who himself got this quality from All Might, who he admired as someone who always won even though the odds were stacked against him.

As such, Deku likes Bakugo, but not in a romantic way. He admires him for who he is and what he has become. He looks up to him as someone whose recognition he needs to earn to finally surpass Bakugo, who Deku always thought was better than him in terms of his will and strength. 

So, even though Midoriya is technically stronger in terms of what his Quirk could do, he always saw Bakugo as the person he needed to surpass and impress so that he could finally say that he had worked hard enough as a young hero. And that is why Deku’s admiration for Bakugo may be borderline romantic for many fans who love to ship them as a couple.

What is Deku’s relationship with Bakugo?

As mentioned, Midoriya and Bakugo started out as friends who played together while still children. However, this relationship deteriorated when Bakugo and the other kids started picking on Midoriya and calling him Deku for being someone they thought was useless.

However, it was during their time together at UA High School that they rekindled their friendship. Though Bakugo would never admit it due to his pride, he now sees Deku as someone he respects due to his strength and the fact that he had earned All Might’s recognition as a worthy successor to his will and the One For All Quirk. And while this rekindled friendship started as a rivalry, they were clearly friends who cared for one another.

heroes rising.jpeg

Midoriya, for instance, was never shy about how he saw Bakugo as a friend he cared for, as he always ensured that his actions allowed him to keep Bakugo and his other classmates safe. In Heroes Rising, he trusted Bakugo enough to pass One For All to him, although the transfer was never completed. Bakugo was also the only person that he trusted regarding his secret as the successor of All Might’s Quirk.

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My Hero Academia: How Many Quirks Does All For One Have?

Then, in the recent Paranormal Liberation War arc, Bakugo showed that he cared for Deku when he put his body on the line to save him from Tomura Shigaraki’s deadly attack. This left Bakugo severely injured, so he could no longer fight properly. And after the battle, Bakugo even tried to storm into Deku’s hospital room to wake him up from his injury-induced coma.

As such, the two have a level of respect and admiration, even though Bakugo never admits that he sees Deku as a friend. However, a romantic relationship between the two is unlikely to happen, and that may be a bummer to many fans shipping them as a couple.

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