To Be Hero Review

Title: Tu Bian Yingxiong / To Be Hero
Length: 12 x 13 minute episodes
Genre: Comedy, action, mystery
Year of release: 2016

I’m not entirely sure what the brief for To Be Hero was. “It’s a crude comedy where we make up the story as we go along!” shouts one overly excited director to the producers. I could also see the studio, Haoliners, deciding to show off a little bit with a technical demonstration… and the writers making it up as they go along. In any case, there’s one constant here – the consistency of the story is so airy-fairy that the planning of it was almost certainly decided, well, as they went along.


Hero, our unnamed protagonist, is turned into an unflatteringly designed overweight man during a bad trip to the toilet by some undeveloped alliance due to the fact he was the only person pooping on the whole planet at the point in time. The story follows this convoluted structure with crude jokes taken to the nth degree, as he somehow slays enemies trying to conquer the earth – whether that’s fixing their cars into disrepair or their own gigantic ball of bogey being too big that they are crushed under it.

Jokes, likewise, go in that same structure. Keeping up with the story is a punchline itself, but it has plenty more jokes too! To Be Hero’s forte really is the comedy, as it takes things to the most ridiculous, most crude degree that they could possibly go. With a gentle peppering of fourth wall breaking humour or loud smattering of dumb ideas, you’ll even be kept on your toes.


As Hero tries to protect his daughter from harm and the male population, the jokes can sometimes become a little too crude. Neighbour, Yamada, partakes in creepy sexual escapades for no real reason at all and sometimes it’s just in bad taste. Likewise, the poop jokes, while hilarious, can veer a little into the juvenile territory.

Still, To Be Hero’s frantic pacing, frenetic humour and incongruent story would be nothing without the backdrop. The art is simple and easy on the eyes, but this is partially to accommodate all the animation’s fantastic highlights. Put simply, To Be Hero is an impressive technical showpiece. The scenery destruction, dynamic visual space and model animation is all top tier.


In the later stage of the story, all the ridiculousness is blended into a surprisingly heartwarming experience, and it’s here that To Be Hero gives its best surprise and most astonishing visuals. There’s nothing To Be Hero can’t do. It might occasionally lack eloquence and the multiverse theory doesn’t quite explain some of the consistency errors, but this humble little show doesn’t have brakes, and I’m o so glad for its inception.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s