Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is a film written by franchise creator Akira Toriyama and directed by Tetsuro Kodama. The movie was produced by Toei Animation, distributed in North America by 20th Century Studios, and dubbed into English by Crunchyroll.
Goku (Sean Schemmel) and Vegeta (Christopher Sabat) are training with Whis (Ian Sinclair) in space while Piccolo (Christopher Sabat) is training. After being asked to pick up Pan (Jeannie Tirado), he confronts Gohan (Kyle Hebert) about his lack of training and focus on his family. Gohan blows him off and continues his research. Later, Piccolo is attacked by Gamma 2 (Zeno Robinson) and fakes his death. He follows the new foe to his base to discover that a villain called Magenta (Charles Martinet) has recruited a robotics expert Dr. Hedo (Zach Aguilar) to build Gamma 2 and his older “brother” Gamma 1 (Aleks Le) in order to defeat Goku and company with a new Red Ribbon Army. With time running out, Piccolo tries to contact Goku, but fails and is forced to use drastic measures to stop the villains before they strike Bulma (Monica Rial) and the rest of his allies.
There are few franchises that can claim they brought anime to the forefront of pop culture in the United States. Dragon Ball is certainly one of those. While you can debate the quality of various “sagas” from the shows and the films, there is no doubt it is at the forefront. This movie definitely proves why.
This is a movie for the fans. While Disney, WB, and Paramount are attacking the fans, the Dragon Ball creators brought us a film that shows so much love for them. There were inside jokes, meta-humor, callbacks, and lots of that DBZ humor. It was fun, action-packed, honored the past, built for a future, and, above all, brought back an epic version of Gohan. His arc in this movie was the best part, even showing his love for Pan, who is no longer the spoiled brat that was introduced in Dragon Ball GT. It was an improvement all around.
I will say, the animation was a bit strange. It was not bad, just another style of anime that is different from sort of the more classic style that DBZ was known for. However, they kept all of the original character designs so that was a plus. They also made the action sequences smooth, colorful, lively, and epic. I have to also praise the music, which pulled you into the scenes.
If you are a longtime Dragon Ball fan, I think you will love it. If you are a new fan, it will blow your mind. If you’re a newcomer to anime, give it a try. You might like it. I honestly see no downside to giving it a watch.
Bottom line, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is everything I wanted it to be and more. It did not try to “subvert” my expectations but exceeded them. It was mind-blowingly awesome and I loved it.
PARENTAL CONCERN: Some foul language, Action violence, Inappropriate humor
FAVORITE QUOTE: The next phase of your training begins tomorrow.
Check out the trailer below:
This article is based on the English dub.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below. Tell me if there is a comic book, movie, or novel you would like me to review. While you are at it, check out my reviews of Lightyear and The Satellite Girl and Milk Cow. Don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe for more posts like this one.