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'Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero' Review: Dragon Ball Fan Service Done Right

Courtesy of CrunchyRoll

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is the newest Dragon Ball film, taking place after the events of Dragon Ball Super and Dragon Ball Super: Broly. In this film, the Red Ribbon Army is rebuilding itself after being defeated by Goku in Dragon Ball and Gohan defeated Cell in Dragon Ball Z. Goku and Vegeta are off the planet training with Broly, so Piccolo and Gohan have to stop the new Red Ribbon Army and their new androids. The film was directed by Tetsuro Kodama, written by Akira Toriyama, and the English dub once again stars Kyle Hebert, Christopher Sabat, Sean Schemmel, and Monica Rial from the previous anime and film. I’ve been a big fan of the Dragon Ball series since I was a kid, but never saw any of the films in theaters. It felt like Dragon Ball Super: Broly had no marketing when it came out, so I had no idea it was out in theaters around the time it was. This time, I got to experience seeing some of my all-time favorite characters on the big screen and had a blast watching it.

As I mentioned before, the main characters of the film are Gohan and Piccolo, who are my top two favorite characters in Dragon Ball. It feels like these characters were pushed to the side for years in favor of Goku and Vegeta, so it was great to see them shine. It’s as if the crew working on this film were aware of the downgrade of Gohan’s character since Dragon Ball Z and used this as an opportunity to fix it and remind everyone Gohan can be the most powerful character. The film is also a reminder of how powerful Piccolo is. The dynamic between Gohan and Piccolo is great as always.

This film is the first Dragon Ball film to mainly use 3-D animation. It felt weird and off at first since I’ve been used to the classic 2-D style. It almost reminded me of the animation style of the Dragon Ball video games. As the film progressed though, the animation improves. The film also gets off to a slow start to set up our antagonists, but once that is done, the film moves quicker. The new characters work, especially the new androids Gamma 1 and Gamma 2. They have character development that works.

The fight scenes are great and fun to watch. There is a new android called Cell Max that fights our heroes at the end. At first, I was worried it was going to be like Doomsday in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Cell Max was handled well. It’s great to see Akira Toriyama and the crew revisiting the Red Ribbon Army and a new version of Cell because it felt like in Dragon Ball Super and Dragon Ball Super: Broly, they relied heavily on Frieza and that nostalgia. I am a huge Frieza fan, but would love to revisit the other big previous threats.

All in all, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is worth seeing in theaters. It’s another example of fan service done right. It felt like a love letter to fans of Gohan and Piccolo. The new characters worked out well. The film captured the fun of the Dragon Ball franchise well. The 3-D animation was weird at first, but grew on me and got better as the film progressed. I wish they marketed Dragon Ball films better so the fans can know right away a new Dragon Ball film is coming. If you are a fan, especially of the characters Gohan and Piccolo, I recommend this film to you.

Final Grade-A-

What did you think of Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero? Let us know in the comments down below.

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