WARNING: The following contains spoilers for My Hero Academia Season 5, Episode 22, "Sad Man's Parade," now streaming on Crunchyroll, Funimation and Hulu.
Tomura Shigaraki and his fellow League of Villains members continue their clash with the mighty Meta Liberation Army in My Hero Academia Season 5, and Himiko and Dabi, in particular, learn that their opponents wield truly fearsome firepower -- with Himiko facing Curious, the flame villain and Dabi facing the ice warrior Geten.
Emitter Quirks rank among the strongest in My Hero Academia, from Shoto's ice/fire ability to his father Endeavor's Quirk, and Geten's ice-based Quirk is easily on par with anything Shoto and pro heroes can manage. In another life, Geten could have been a renowned hero, but he lacks the heart of a hero, and that's what really matters. Quirks alone don't make a hero.
Geten's Overwhelming Ice Powers At Work
The Meta Liberation Army boasts over 110,000 members, some of whom wield truly fearsome Quirks that could challenge even a pro hero. Dabi and Twice fight hard as Geten fights the League with his ice powers, and he relies on more than just brute force. He can also form ice ramps and freeze the water in the town's pipes to attack the League -- including widespread Twice clones -- all over the place, all at once. Geten's raw firepower can stand up to Dabi's famously powerful flames, and Dabi and Twice have not yet found a way to defeat him.
Geten's casual use of immense firepower hints at the Quirk singularity theory, a concept stating that in the near future, Quirks will become so powerful and varied that no government agency or hero squad can hope to control or predict them any longer. Quirks are becoming more akin to a natural disaster than natural human evolution, and Geten's parents didn't necessarily even need a Quirk marriage to produce a powerful son like him. If there's already one rogue citizen on Geten's level, they may be more -- a scary thought for heroes and villains alike.
What Sets Heroes Apart From Geten
It's tempting to think that someone just needs a powerful Quirk and the will to use it to become a great heroic student and later, an actual pro hero. The best U.A. and Shiketsu students are all powerhouses such as Shoto Todoroki, Inasa Yoarashi and Katsuki Bakugo, and Geten is on par with any of them. Constant training with a powerful Quirk is a vital step in becoming a true pro hero, but power without responsibility is nothing. By now, Quirks can be taken for granted, even powerful ones. The real variable is the will behind those Quirks.
The issue of the Quirk singularity becomes even more acute if rogues such as Geten use their gifts with wild abandon, with no regard for the law or societal order. Heroes are different from the likes of Geten not because they're stronger, but because they fight specifically for the law, justice and the defense of others. A true hero would rather face ten superior villains and lose to them than join them for self-preservation's sake, and heroes such as Sir Nighteye and Kota Izumi's parents laid down their lives for the cause.
The human element is what sets apart heroes and villains, not raw firepower, and Geten proves that in the wrong hands, would-be heroic Quirks are nothing more than natural disasters, beholden to no law or justice. Unless he can be somehow redeemed, Geten's ice powers are wasted in the eyes of heroes. However, at this rate, redemption will never happen and Geten will embody the dark side of the Quirk singularity to the bitter end.