|“||Do you really want to know what heroes are?! They're people who hurt their own families... only to help complete strangers.||„|
|~ Kotaro ranting about his belief about heroes.|
Kotaro Shimura is a minor yet pivotal antagonist in My Hero Academia. He was the son of Pro Hero Nana Shimura and the father of Tenko Shimura.
Fueled by his bitterness towards heroes because of his mother giving him up, he abused his family harshly for even mentioning them, which was one of the factors that led to his son to become the villain now known as Tomura Shigaraki.
Kotaro used to be a happy and normal child until his mother gave him up to live with foster parents. This led him to resent heroes, believing them to be selfish individuals who abandon their families just to help strangers. He became an abusive parent towards his children, punishing them for mentioning heroes by forcing them to sit outside the house until they apologized. Kotaro is also resentful towards his mother for abandoning him in the first place, as seeing a photo of her enraged him and caused him to snap at his family while expressing his cynicism towards heroes.
Despite this, he does feel remorse after his breakdown, tearing up while believing that he went too far and not understanding why he snapped like that, especially after seeing his happier childhood. However, when he sees Tenko panicking after killing his loved ones with his uncontrollable Quirk, rather than help him, Kotaro panicked and attacked him to stop him from getting out of control. Not only does this rash decision ultimately lead to him being killed by his vengeful son, but also his abuse towards his son would later serve as further fuel for Tomura's motivation to destroy everything.
When Kotaro was young, he was very close to his mother Nana Shimura who did nothing but shower him with affection. Tragically, his father was killed and his grieving mother gave him up to pursue her career of heroism and protect him, should she meet the same fate.
In their last meeting, Kotaro cried before he and his mother were separated.
Over time, his sadness turned to resentment, which drove him into hating heroes. Although he was successful enough in his job to build a home, his resentment never faded even after having his children Hana and Tenko, and he would verbally abuse his family to the point where all of them were scared of him. Tenko had a fascination with heroes, but this caused Kotaro to punish him routinely. However, he still had the support of his mother Nao and his sister Hana, whom showed him a picture of their grandmother Nana.
When Kotaro found out, he snapped at Tenko and voiced his hatred of heroes (by extension his mother) while the rest of the family only watched in horror, before forcing his son to sit out in the dark. That night, he stared at the picture of him and his mother before reading the letter she gave him, telling him that she still loved him. Kotaro was then confronted by his wife and in-laws on his acts, as he noted on his harshness and questioned why he does the things he does.
Later on, Tenko broke into tears for all the abuse that Kotaro put him through along with his family's inability to help, and finds comfort with his dog until he accidentally kills it when his Quirk, Decay, manifests for the first time. Later, Hana tries to apologize to him for not standing up to him (as she was also afraid of what her father would do to her), but flees when she sees her brother unable to control his destructive powers.
After the horrified Tenko accidentally kills his sister, grandparents, and mother with his Quirk, Kotaro is alerted of the noise and finds his decayed family. Tenko begs his stunned father for help, as he unintentionally destroys the area and runs to Kotaro for aid. Fearful, Kotaro attacks him with a weed clipper in response and ordered him to stop but sees that his act led to Tenko losing all of his sanity. With full intent to kill, he charged at and deliberately decays his father after touching his face, telling him to die in revenge for all his painful actions. Kotaro was decayed along with the house he built. This act also satisfied Tenko at ending all his painful abuse.
The only part of Kotaro that remained was one of his hands, which the newly-christened Tomura Shigaraki wore on his head as his new villain costume. Tomura repressed his memories of his family until his fight with Re-Destro, in which he remembered back when he was an innocent child with a caring family. However, he also remembers his father, the person who was cruel to him throughout his life, which causes Shigaraki to nullify all of his guilt towards his family and become more determined to destroy everything.
In the Paranormal Liberation War Arc, Tomura's memories of his father would instead strengthen his will to be the most powerful villain. After being left in a death-like state from getting his surgery interrupted, Tomura was trapped in his own memories. He remembered his other family members and temporarily regained his humanity until seeing a giant Kotaro yelling at him, causing Tomura to revert back to a villain and disintegrate the projection of his father. Later, Tomura sees All For One beckoning him to join him, and all of his family members trying to stop him by grabbing him with the same positions their hands were on his earliest villain costume, with Kotaro grabbing his forehead, but Tomura decays them all to join his master. Moments later after Tomura wakes up and clashes with Endeavor, the Flame Hero tells him that without ideals, his hollow destruction will never bring them down. Tomura tells the heroes that they hurt their families just to help complete strangers, quoting Kotaro's philosophy, which motivates him to fight on as a villain.
When Gran Torino confronts Tomura, he recognizes his face as a Shimura, which brings him to the memory of when Nana gave Kotaro away while both made a tearful exchange. After this, she told Torino that she tinkered with the family records to remove Kotaro, because if All For One found out about their connection, he would exploit their connection. She claims that she no longer has a son, and breaks down in tears while Torino comforts her. In the present, Gran Torino realizes that because of the choice they made, Kotaro grew up to influence his son into becoming the embodiment of his own hatred of heroes.
- The circumstances that led to Tomura becoming a villain (being abandoned by his family and rejected by bystanders) are exactly like Kotaro's past, leading to Tomura ironically becoming just like his father, only to a greater extent. Both of them took out their rage and disillusionment towards heroes and society out on others, but Tomura goes far enough to outright destroy them. If he had not abused his son for his belief of heroism, Tomura wouldn't have become a villain.
- He is considered the indirect Greater Scope Villain of the My Hero Academia series, as he is responsible for instilling his son's hatred of heroes, and is thus the reason why Tomura became All For One's successor and the leader of the supervillains all over Japan.
- His appearance looks like that of Yoshikage Kira.
League of Villains
Paranormal Liberation Front