Friendship power, or nakama power, is a prominent concept in anime, particularly those aimed at the shonen demographic. Shonen anime is primarily geared at young male audiences, with characters motivated by a desire to defend their friends and loved ones. They draw strength from the friendships they've formed during their experiences. Regrettably, the execution is frequently forced or cringey – but recent developments in My Hero Academia demonstrate how the concept may be used well.
My Hero Academia's world has lately been flipped upside down; while the villains continue to run rampant, the number of heroes continues to diminish. Deku has taken it upon himself to save as many innocent people as he can on the streets, which have effectively turned uncontrolled. But, he is only one person. He wears out and tires, and it's time for his companions to wake him up.
Midoriya Izuku has gone rogue, and he is now facing backlash
Knowing that All For One and Tomura Shigaraki are constantly tracking and hunting him down, Izuku Midoriya has resolved to reduce all possible collateral damage to a minimum. That means patrolling the streets on his own while his classmates and loved ones take shelter inside UA. He continues to do his hero business with the help of All Might, Endeavor, Hawks and Best Jeanist. By doing so, Deku continues to save innocent lives while also furthering his mastery of One For All and its previous wielders' Quirks. However, his non-stop action is finally taking its toll on the young hero.
Midoriya has undeniably gotten stronger during his shtick as a mysterious hero, but he is already tiring himself. He has taken down notable enemies like Lady Nagant but hasn't come out of these clashes unscathed. Since he hasn't allowed himself to rest, the built-up fatigue and injury are now coming in droves -- so much so that the My Hero Academia protagonist almost meets his demise. Thankfully, his classmates from Class 1-A arrive to aid him and finish what he started. Even so, the young hero remains adamant to do things on his own.
The Power of Friendship in My Hero Academia Contains a Good Smack
In most anime, the strength of friendship manifests itself as drawing inspiration. Often, the protagonist gains some form of augmentation via pure resolve; other times, trust and friendship will translate into literal strength. Yet, in Season 6, Episode 22 of My Hero Academia, the Class 1-A students demonstrate that the strength of friendship can also be demonstrated through tough love. Deku's classmates are eager to take him on by force since he has gone so far down this path of self-destruction. They don't necessary want to hurt or kill him, but they do want to make him think.
The main reason Midoriya has gone rogue in the first place is to minimize any possible casualties, and he has somehow achieved that. However, he has completely forgotten his well-being in the process. He has forgotten that part of being a hero is teamwork and relying on others, and that's what his classmates are trying to make him realize -- the hard way. Given that Midoriya is already tired and weary, it seems his friends have a high chance of penetrating that hard skull.