The depressed towns and dusty wasteland of Megalo Box's war-torn dystopia are obvious, but the characters' trauma and suffering make it particularly clear. Distractions and dreams are essential escapes when everyone outside the upper echelon is struggling to make ends meet in a devastated world. A superhuman boxing league that features larger-than-life fighters who use prosthetic technology to give the average person a sense of wonder and freedom fits in perfectly with this world.

When a mysterious street rat who lacks the required technology overtakes the league, it ignites a fire in many disenfranchised fighters and civilians. By defying convention, Joe transforms the world around him. He offers hopeless hope and inspires those who are struggling with the possibilities of drive and perseverance.


Nanbu and Sachio Join the family of Joe

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Underdogs are often magnets for the downtrodden and discouraged. Joe’s humble start draws the support of a motley mix of specialists in the form of the grumpy but experienced Gansaku Nanbu, the upstart young mechanic Sachio and a posse of fellow street urchins. As a collection of people idling and frustrated by the oppressive nature of this dystopian reality, an ambitious upstart like Joe is an excellent source of motivation.

Nanbu becomes a wonderful mentor whose compassion and humility grow because of his time around Joe’s bright light. That light also acts as a goal for Sachio and his crew as they realize their passions and drives are worthy without concern for their current social position. Everyone in the slums who is aware of Joe and his successes becomes empowered by his bold, self-sacrificial approach to his dreams. Nanbu, Sachio, and Team Nowhere become Joe's found family, even if he doesn't fully embrace these relationships.


Joe Aids Other Fighters, Including Aragaki, in Rediscovering Their Humanity

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The Megalo Box world was severely damaged by war, but the people who experienced the violence firsthand suffered even worse wounds. Many soldiers receive second chances by receiving new legs and arms thanks to the prosthetic technology at the heart of Megalonia. Aragaki, Nanbu's final prizefighter, experienced the worst parts of war firsthand, leaving him physically and psychologically scarred. Aragaki fights with ferocious fire because he thinks that winning in Megalonia will enable him to reclaim his humanity.

His loss to Joe is both humbling and empowering. When Joe’s gearless pursuit of success halts Aragaki’s path, Aragaki reconsiders the violent path in life. Joe reopens Aragaki’s eyes to the importance of following the heart and finding genuine dreams that align with one’s morals. Aragaki becomes refreshed and starts helping others on a rewarding and selfless path.


The Success of Joe Shakes The Shiratos

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Joe’s impact extends beyond the slums as he forces the upper echelon to recognize his existence and talent by defeating their finest fighters. Megalonia’s first family, the Shiratos, are forced to acknowledge Joe’s skills as he systematically tears down their pride and joy, the highest-quality gears and prosthetics in Megalo Box. Mikio and Yukiko believe their technology is superior, transcending any human potential.

All the calculations and tweaks made by Mikio to his impressive boxing AI fall short when faced with Joe’s tenacity and adaptability. Seeing her brother defeated and her prizefighter abandoning their path to make Shirato Corporation a true legend, Yukio must reconsider her direction. Both siblings stray from their prideful path, settling into lives of entrepreneurship and education. The humility brought about by Joe’s passion makes the Shiratos better human beings who start contributing to the world around them rather than hoarding wealth and power.


Megalonia Boxers Are Forever Changed by Joe's Underdog Story

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Current and future boxers reconsider their reason and approach to fighting after Joe’s impassioned displays. Yuri, the unbeatable champion of Megalonia, embraces Joe’s passion and willfully puts himself through dangerous surgery to have a real fight with Joe. Their rivalry drastically alters his life. Even though he cannot box, he is genuinely happier as a coach and humble corner man.

Joe's style of boxing is emulated by the boxers from Megalonia after him. An older immigrant leader named Chief believes that by sacrificing his well-being in order to succeed in Megalovania, he will be able to free his people from poverty. His path is difficult because another potential victor overcame a disabling accident by pulling himself up by his bootstraps. Mac surpasses human limitations and defies all odds, just like Joe. Joe's influence on the world is best exemplified by these two brilliant fighters.

Investing in the underestimated or underqualified is rewarding. Going against all odds, Joe drew the interest or ire of an immense amount of people. While it wasn't his goal to make the world a better place, his pure drive and passionate pursuit of his dreams proved infectious, implanting seeds of hope and limitlessness in everyone who watched his challenging rise to glory.