Manga / Mob Psycho 100

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Mob Psycho 100 is a Japanese webcomic created by ONE, the same author responsible for One-Punch Man. It began publication on Weekly Shōnen Sunday Web Comics on April 18, 2012.

Shigeo Kageyama, nicknamed "Mob", is a 14 year old boy attending his second year at Salt Middle School. There, he tries to lead an average, ordinary life, despite having been born with strong telekinetic powers. As he undergoes the turmoil of adolescence, he finds his emotionally-fueled powers increasingly hard to suppress. Mob wants to live just like others, but a barrage of trouble comes to him. With the suppressed emotions growing inside Mob little by little, his power threatens to spill over its bounds.

On December 1, 2015, an anime adaption by Studio Bones was announced for release, which premiered July 11, 2016. Said adaptation is directed by Yuzuru Tachikawa, written by Hiroshi Seko and its' music composed by Kenji Kawai. It's licenced by Crunchyroll and distributed by Funimation as part of their partnership deal. The simuldub, produced by Bang Zoom! Entertainment, premiered on Funimation's site on December 11, 2016.

Tropes 100%:

  • Achievement In Ignorance: The Kuchisake-onna is immune to the attacks of anyone who is afraid of her, which due to her nature as an urban legend a lot of people fear her intuitively. Mob is able to kill her because he was sheltered from urban legends and thus doesn't know about her to be scared.
  • Action Prologue: The anime adaptation begins with a battle between ???% Mob and several massive beasts. It is most likely a tease of the mental battle against Mogami's evil spirits.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Pretty much everyone in the anime, which is not only based heavily on the later art of the Manga (see Art Evolution below), but the art is further cleaned up by the animation team - of particular note are Tsubomi, who's drawn much closer to a standard anime style to accentuate how Mob sees her; and Reigen, who's enhanced handsomeness was even noted by Miyo Sato, the animator for the end credits.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The anime opens with what seems to be Mob at ???% power fighting Mogami's army of huge spirits, which is something that only lasted for a couple of panels in the manga. A short story about the spirits of bikers lurking inside a tunnel is also moved to the first episode. In this version, Mob spares the leader and kills the evil monster who was in charge of the place so the bikers can move on peacefully.
  • A God I Am Not: A recurring theme in the series is trying to keep to this mentality, and Mob instilling this mentality in other Espers who think otherwise. Reigen's first advice upon meeting Mob is that being exceptionally skilled at something doesn't make you a better person than anyone else - it's being a good person that makes you great.
  • An Aesop: Whether you are a complete muggle, or possess some one-in-a-million supernatural talent, you can't expect to gain self-respect or the recognition of others if you're too lazy to work on improving yourself as a human being. Mob is admirable because he doesn't hold himself above other people despite his unmatched psychic abilities, and challenges himself to adress his weaknesses instead of just trying to get a free ride based on something he didn't earn. Most of the antagonists are individuals who want an easy way to being feared or adored, and think that having an innate psychic ability that enables them to charm or coerce weaker people makes them entitled to something. Mob's combination of overwhelming power and humility causes his foes to realize that just having supernatural powers doesn't make them entitled to special treatment, and that they have to make themselves worthy of being respected just like anybody else. Meanwhile, Tome and her Telepathy Club are depicted as pathetic because they're just a bunch of slackers who aren't interested in doing anything with their lives, and Mob instead joins the Body Improvement Club despite how hard it is to keep up with them, because he wants to become more athletic and impress the girl he likes.
  • Art Evolution: Despite the fact that somewhat sloppy artwork is something of a trademark for ONE, his art has noticeably improved over the course of the comic.
  • Art Shift: As in One-Punch Man, the fine composition and paneling of the manga is coupled with sloppy artwork that turns detailed when things get serious.
  • Asshole Victim: Mob, Reigen and several other espers are tasked with exorcising an evil spirit out of a girl named Asagiri. It turns out she's a spoiled Alpha Bitch who used her popularity to ruin the lives of other kids who couldn't stand up for themselves. Inside the mental world created by Mogami she's forced into acting much worse, to the point of stabbing Mob while Mogami tries to convince him she's not worth saving. Once Mob wins and frees her, Asagiri has the nerve to try to laugh the entire experience off, only to break down crying and beg Mob to forgive her.
  • Always Someone Better: An important point of this series is that it's painful knowing that someone out there in the world is better, but this doesn't invalidate your own abilities. This is ultimately what saves Teru and changes him into being a better person- his humiliation by Mob makes him realize how he was acting towards others, and he resolves to change himself.
  • Badass Normal: Arataka Reigen regularly goes up against evil spirits and powerful espers with no fear, and even wins a good portion of the time, despite not having any powers of his own.
  • Bavarian Fire Drill: Reigen walks right into Claw's base with no resistance simply because all the mooks assume that he's the boss. Made even better by the fact that he wasn't even trying to do so.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Do what you will to Mob, but do not hurt his family.
  • Bookends:
    • The first OP begins with a Pink and Cyan Neon Cityscape with electronic billboards showing Eyedscreen shots of the main characters, and ends with the title fading out to that same cityscape with the billboards now showing various production credits. In fact, the fade-out is so precise that the OP can be seamlessly looped.
    • Teruki's second appearance early on his arc has him turning a tv on. The arc ends with Ritsu turning a tv off after watching a newscast of what had transpired that day.
    • The first season of the anime both begins and ends with Mob and Reigen going out on a relatively low-stakes job. Likewise, both episodes feature the Kageyama family sitting down for dinner, with Mob bending a spoon with his power, and Ritsu fixing it each time, but the second time Ritsu uses his own powers to unbend it, and Ritsu's care is genuine.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy:
    • Dimple's MO is using Hypnosis to get people to worship him as a God.
    • Food made out of the Divine Tree drives people to worship Lord Psycho Helmet and his cult. Fitting, since Lord Psycho Helmet is just a disguise for Dimple once again.
  • Break the Cutie: The manga attempts this on Mob several times, as he's frequently the victim of attacks - anything from triggering bad memories, attempting to choke him to death, several attempts at brainwashing, kidnapping his brother, attempting to kill Reigen in front of him, making him think his parents and brother have been murdered and his house set on fire. He comes out of everything tired, but maintaining his kindness and innocence.
  • Break the Haughty:
    • Teruki believed himself to be the "protagonist of the world" because of his powers. He felt forced to duel Mob to prove himself, but is unable to harm him and even goes bald from his own misfired knives. Teru then gives up on his own terms for the fight and starts choking Mob to death with his own arms, only for ???% to come out and throughly humiliate him. Teru admits that like Mob he really is nothing without his powers, but then realizes even Mob had people who cared for him. He leaves with grace, but spends the next few weeks sick with depression as he comes to terms with his loss. Once that's done he becomes a much kinder person and a mentor to other espers, but also seems to feel like he can't even be the protagonist of his own story anymore.
    • The separation arc is this for Reigen. He's become so full of himself that he insults and pushes Mob away, causing him to quit, and Dimple tells him that Mob is not only happy without him, but doesn't care about him at all. He attempts to achieve his goal of becoming somebody, only to be humiliated on live television and harassed by the media. He manages to redeem himself by the end of it, more or less apologizing to Mob and earning his forgiveness. He becomes a more Benevolent Boss after that.
  • Character Exaggeration: The anime tends to make everyone more expressive and bombastic. Reigen for example, while already jumpy in the beginning of the story, makes loads of wild gestures along with his Blatant Lies and acts more cowardly.
  • Call Back: The Psycho Helmet arc begins with a narration about yokai creatures in the same way as the one on espers from the beginning of the story. Mob and Reigen then help a yokai hunter fight on the building they once fought Ceiling Challenger. The former LOL Cult and Dimple are also major players in the story once again.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Everyone with a notable fight scene in the show, except maybe Mob, calls out the name of their special techniques. Reigen's exorcism techniques - while not always for fighting - also receive this treatment.
  • Disguised in Drag: Mob and Reigen do this so they can exorcise a spirit haunting an all-girls school without causing any alarm. Reigen, due to being a clearly adult male, fails to pass; but Mob manages to enter without incident and exorcises the ghost.
  • Dumb Muscle: We're shown stat cards of each member of the Body Improvement club and it seems most of them are Book Dumb except for Jun, whose weakness is his thin eyebrows instead. When the club is forced to score well on an exam to keep afloat, he's the only one who properly focuses on his studies while the others get distracted by their physical training.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: When the narrator introduces the concept of espers to the viewer, the anime shows several characters who will appear through the story.
  • Edible Theme Naming: All of the schools in Seasoning City are named after condiments, naturally.
  • Evil Counterpart: Teruki (who abused psychic power to excel over normal people), Mogami (a ruthless cynic who became consumed by his own negative emotions) and Lord Psycho Helmet, who's initially just Dimple in disguise, are this to Mob.
  • Evil Twin: In order to take over the Psycho Helmet cult, Dimple takes the form of a humanoid being that looks like the sketch that the cult had made of Mob's face. After Mob convinces Dimple to stop his plan, the sentient Divine Tree begins spawing Psycho Helmets on its own to protect itself.
  • Expository Theme Tune: The opening theme "99" is custom-made for the show. The lyrics throws in random bits of the techniques seen in the show(including Reigen's 'secret' exorcism techniques) like Salt Splash, Wraither Beam, and Psycho Wave alongside Mob's troubles such as 'love' and 'not getting a clue'. The earworm chorus echoes the conflict the characters are facing (not only Mob, but also Ritsu, Teru, and yes even Dimple and Reigen): "If everyone is not special, maybe you can be what you want to be." and Your life is your own, okay... But will you be okay so long as you're special?. Lastly, the count from 1% to 99% gets progressively charged throughout the song, reflecting the build-up of Mob's emotions just before he explodes at 100%.
    • Contrast with the ending theme, "Refrain Boy", which plays the Anime Theme Song trope fairly straight for having only the slightest connection, if any, to the show.
  • Foreshadowing: The opening has tons, like alluding to Teru's ridiculous wig, The Divine Tree, as well as Dimple's connection to it, the Seventh Branch of Claw, and Ritsu developing his powers.
  • Handshake Refusal: Dimple offers a handshake to Mob but gets slammed around instead. Mob then starts to offer one to a hostile Teruki, who jumps back on instinct. A reformed Teruki then successfully gives one to a Drunk with Power Ritsu, scaring him away with the intensity of his aura. And then when Ritsu seizes Dimple with the intent of exorcising him, Dimple asks him, "What? You want to shake hands?".
  • I Just Want to Be Special: Whereas Mob wants to live a mundane but fulfilling life, a lot of the cast are foils to him who envy his powers and do bad things because they're also looking for a purpose in life.
  • In-Name-Only: The "Telepathy Club". Only one member actually believes in telepathy at all, and mostly they just spend their time slacking off and playing video games.
  • Lovable Jock: The Body Improvement Club are a group of genuinely nice and friendly people. Not only do they let the former Telepathy Club use the club room (since they only need it to store their equipment) they're also one of the few people in Mob's life aside from his family who are not looking to use him for their gain and see him as one of their own.
  • Mean Boss: Reigen exploits Mob for his abilities, underpays him and keeps calling at the most inopportune times. Some of the advice he gives him is also done for selfish reasons. However, as the story goes on it becomes clear he cares about Mob and once he comes to realize he's not being a positive influence on him he turns into a Benevolent Boss.
  • Meaningful Echo: When Mob and Reigen first met, Mob was conflicted over his nature as an esper and asked Reigen for advice. Reigen told Mob that his powers make him no less humane and all that matters is that he remains a good person. Later on, after Mob helps Reigen with the fallout of his scams being exposed, Reigen asks Mob what he thinks of him now that he knows what he really is. Mob replies he had always known that Reigen was, in fact... a good person.
  • Mind Rape: When trying to save Asagiri from Mogami's possession, Mob becomes trapped in a mental world where he is alone with no memories or powers and surrounded by people who make his life a living hell at every turn for several months. Mogami believed that to be the true nature of the world and wanted to beat Mob's naive attitude out of him. Had Dimple not come to Mob's aid, he would've succeeded.
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Whatever Reigen does is given a fancy name and gets referred to as his "Secret Techniques" by the narrator. Examples include doing massages to make his clients relax, throwing salt at people, performing dropkicks... photoshopping spirits out of pictures and breaking computers that were full of porn...
  • My God, What Have I Done?: In the past, Mob and Ritsu were mugged by older students who then knocked Mob out cold by pushing him into a wall. Mob later woke up to see all of them, including Ritsu, all unconscious and blood-soaked from ???%'s rampage. This caused Mob to deeply fear his own powers and made him into the emotionally repressed boy seen at the start of the series.
  • Nondescript Club: Lampooned with the Telepathy Club, who despite having a stated goal are depicted as lazy slackers who don't do anything except play video games and eat junk food. The student council tells them that they'll have to disband if they don't recruit one more member, so they try to recruit Mob, but Mob ends up joining the Body Improvement Club instead since he wants to improve himself. In the end, the Telepathy Club is officially disbanded and their funds are cut by the student council, but fortunately for them, the Body Improvement Club still lets them use their clubroom since the latter club just uses it to store their weights.
  • Phony Psychic: Reigen runs an exorcism agency and mentors Mob but has no psychic powers at all. He manages to help people in his own way but has to sic Mob on the actual supernatural beings he comes across. Mob pretty much knows Reigen is no Esper but assumes that, as a "Psychic", Reigen has powers of a different nature than his own.
  • The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: Tome is the only member of the Telepathy Club who actually believes in psychic powers, and everyone else is just there to goof off and eat junk food.
  • Psychic Powers: In terms of power, the story generally focuses on Espers, who have strong psychic abilities.
  • Readings Are Off the Scale: Whenever Mob is severely injured and falls unconscious, his incomprehensible latent power is unleashed upon the world. His power level at that point reads as ???%.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge:
    • Subverted for comedy. When Teruki seemingly kills Dimple, Mob becomes shocked and has flashbacks to his recent time alongside him... and then he says he doesn't really care. His explosion meter doesn't increase at all.
    • At one point Mob finds his house burning to the ground and inside are what appears to be the corpses of his family. He goes ballistic over this, with his explosion meter increasing far beyond 100%. Dimple has to desperately convince him that what he saw was an illusion made by some esper so Mob doesn't destroy the entire city out of grief.
  • Shout-Out:
    • There are some nods to One-Punch Man, like Reigen having a picture of Saitama as his cellphone's wallpaper or Mob dreaming of training so much that he goes bald. Mob's homeroom teacher in the first episode also looks a lot like how Yusuke Murata draws himself.
    • The second episode shows Mob reading a One-Punch Man manga, so it looks like both series are a Show Within a Show in each other's settings (one scene in Murata's OPM remake had Saitama wearing a "Mob Psycho 1000000" shirt).
    • The third episode has Saitama making a cameo on the back of the "MobDonald's" soda cup, and in the fourth episode as well.
    • In the fourth episode the character Tenga Onigawara looks like Josuke Higashikata from part 4 and his special attack involves rapid punches referencing Crazy Diamond. He even shout's Josuke's battle cry of "Dorararara" the first time he does it for good measure.
    • Mob at ???% looks awfully similar to Boros Meteoric Burst mode. His fight against Koyama also heavily references the Boros fight.
    • At one point, when Ritsu is trying to use psychic powers, he strikes several poses, in shout-outs to Snek, Caesar Zeppeli, and Dragon Ball.
    • Dimple's LOL Cult promising happiness may be a reference to the Happy-Happy cult from Earthbound. The Smile Masks even look a little like the masks worn by the Insane Cultists who attack Ness.
  • Spoiler Opening:
    • The anime's opening hints at several events from almost every arc of the ongoing story, such as the LOL Cult, Teruki being overwhelmed by ???% Mob, Ritsu awakening his powers, the Claw Organization and even a certain broccoli. Plus it is filled with gags from various other minor moments.
    • Mogami's arc is one of the few that is not foreshadowed in the opening, but you know that fight scene with no context that opens the first episode?... Well, wait for it. The man in question is also seen among the Early-Bird Cameo esper people shown during the narration at the beginning.
    • The closing credits draw heavily from a later arc focused on Reigen's life and his relationship with Mob.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: ???% Mob acts solely on his survival instincts and has limitless power to tap into. Mob is very afraid of what he can do when under this power, as this power caused him to hurt his younger brother by mistake. When facing Teruki, who had almost choked Mob to death, ???% absorbs his powers and starts lifting the guy and the entire landscape high into the sky. Mob wakes up just in time to prevent everyone involved from crashing down and also rebuilds the nearby school.
  • Super Mode: 100% Mob. While Mob is usually a very strong esper, at 100% Mob becomes incredibly powerful, with the current emotion he's feeling influencing his thoughts, appearance and powers. The series notes these as "explosions". Notable explosions include:
    • 100% Anger, the first time we see Mob explode, during his time with the LOL Cult that results in him decimating the crowd of onlookers and shattering Dimple.
    • 100% Sadness, the aftermath of Teru's battle with Mob that results in Vinegar Mid repairing itself.
    • 100% Courage, which appears during the Mogami and Touichirou fights.
    • 100% Gratitude, which causes Super Empowering and boosts Reigen into the unstoppable Reigen 1000%
    • 100% Rejection, an explosion which was unnamed in the manga, causes Mob to unconsciously amplify an illusion directed at him and send it back to the caster. While this results in said caster falling into a coma due to a considerable amount of brain damage, it also backfires on Mob who promptly collapses afterwards and wakes up with absolutely no recollection of the event whatsoever.
    • 100% Friendship, Ecstasy, Shame, Compassion, Resignation, and Kindness appearing during the second Claw arc, allow Mob to, in order calm an incredibly distressed esper, give him a massive power boost, let him create a barrier by surrounding himself with storm clouds, lets him see into the mind and heart of others, uninhibits his psychic powers to a strong degree, and finally allows him to redirect so much psychic energy and the pain that it was causing to its user that it results in the creation of the Divine Tree.
    • 100% Trust is a Subversion, as it causes Mob to discard his power and reduce himself to basically a normal human, leaving him completely unable to fight or defend himself.
  • Take Over the World: Claw is an organization of espers who seek to dominate the world. Reigen finds them to be a bunch of immature society rejects and chews them out about that.
  • Take That!: The way the Telepathy Club is presented is basically a potshot at the numerous Slice of Life and Moe anime based around school clubs that use a vague goal as a thinly-veiled excuse to just hang out and have fun after school like The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. Though the club tries to claim that they need to keep it running in order to "enjoy their youth" and "create fond memories", it's pretty clear that Tome is the only one who really believes in telepathy, and all they do in their club is waste their youth by playing video games and eating junk food.
  • They Call Me Mister Tibbs: Mob tells Dimple in their first meeting after battling to call him "Shigeo", not "Shige-Chan". This later happens when Dimple introduces himself to Ritsu.
  • The Verse: ONE has implied this and One-Punch Man share a verse (He was asked and answered a question on who would win between Mob and Tatsumaki from said series, along with Tatsumaki making a brief cameo during the LOL Cult arc).
  • Translated Cover Version: The ending theme, "Refrain Boy", well sort of. The ending theme for episode eight showcasing the English version of the song was done by the same band ALL OFF, so it's not a cover. However the translation was impressively close, at least to a thematic level, to the original. It was sung in Surprisingly Good English, too. Justified in that the lead singer of ALL OFF was raised for a time in California.
  • Wham Line: From the climax of Episode 7 (said by Mob) comes an example: "Ritsu... What are you doing?"
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Mob refuses to use his powers on humans due to Reigen's influence, but he annihilates obviously-sentient spirits without the slightest hint of hesitation or remorse. Later on in the story, Mob comes to realize that he has used his power so far for the benefit of humans, and gets deeply bothered by the thought that if ever he turns against humans, then there might be no one to stop him.
  • World Tree: The Divine Tree created out of broccoli seeds from Mob's pocket when he was dealing with Touichirou's power meltdown becomes the center of attention and faith from the entire city and its roots threaten to destroy it all.

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