Review of 'Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero': A New Saiyan Adventure Is a Surprising Fun Ride

Review of 'Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero': A New Saiyan Adventure Is a Surprising Fun Ride ...

If you were or were a kid in the late 1990s and early 00s, Son Goku and his super saiyan family are bound to have appeared on your screens. If you are or have been a fan, however, you may be aware of some of the overdone tropes of the anime series, which has been on the air for the better part of the last 30+ years. Youll have fun with it, whether you like it or not.

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is based on the latest spin-off of the anime series while Gohan enjoys some quiet time on Earth while his father Goku and his pal Vegeta train hard on the distant planet of Beerus, as well as Broly from the previous franchise entry Dragon Ball Super: Broly. However, Gohan's peace soon becomes shattered as the new red Ribbon Army prepares two powerful androids in order to take revenge on Son Goku and saiyans in general.

Toriyama, the series' creator, has given us a hand in crafting the script. Even if some die-hard fans might yell this isnt Dragon Ball! at the new 3D version of their favorite characters, theyre all being handled by a writer who knows his stuff a lot more than we do. So there isnt a single moment throughout the film when you say Gohan won't do that, or Vegeta isnt like that.

Toriyama and director Tetsuro Kodama are so confident in their material that we get a long introduction without any of the wonderful characters, which establishes the plot effectively, making it clear what types of villains we should expect from them throughout the film. This kind of subversion of expectation is the finest quality.

Toriyama understands that we dont need to have absolute fan favorites Goku and Vegeta at the ready all the time, and that when a major threat arises, there might not even be time to warn them! This allows some room for other character arcs, including Piccolo (and his sweet relationship with Gohan's daughter Pan), who single-handedly propels the plot forward with astonishing efficiency. Or, as a guy who is more than trained to deal with challenging situations and has his own competent procedures to deal with

As the film progresses, it throws curveballs when it comes to plot decisions, from how the main characters are presented in the film to the duo of villains. Gamma 1 and Gamma 2 are distinct enough to have their own personalities and provide some entertaining battles, as well as funny cameos, and a bit of self-aware humor.

Despite the reality in which they live in, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is also clever in grounding its characters: You really feel for Gohan when he admits to neglecting his training because he's finally got a break from studying. At some point, Vegeta criticizes Goku for his fighting style and the errors that the super saiyan made during their last epic battle with Broly.

The fights, of course, are another highlight of the film. Fans of the franchise largely disliked the idea of modifying the animation style, but (I know Im alone when saying this) the 3D works beautifully for the fights, making them even more enjoyable to watch. Notice, for example, how you can hear the somewhat discreet sound of metal being hit whenever Gamma 1 or Gamma 2.

If you watched any of the twenty-six episodes of the anime series or one of the franchises' twenty films, you've probably been familiar with everything from transformation to finding new strength. This has certainly been done many times throughout the history of Dragon Ball. The film even tries to avoid this trope by switching gears when it comes to its villains and what they can do when push comes to shove, but ultimately, you realize that it took the scenic route to get to the same destination.

Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero is a funny film that knows how to use its humor and has fun fighting them, but its very conscious that you must care about those characters to enjoy the ride. Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero isnt afraid to create its own narrative and spend some quiet time with fan favorites.

B+ rating

Now available in theaters, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero.