Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (ドラゴンボール超 スーパーヒーロー, Doragon Bōru Sūpā Sūpā Hīrō) is the 21st Dragon Ball movie and the second Dragon Ball Super movie. It was initially set for release on April 22, 2022; however, a hack at Toei caused the film to be delayed until June 11, 2022.
Novel adaptations were also released.
A long time ago, there existed an evil organization known as the Red Ribbon Army led by Commander Red. Though they were seemingly defeated by the young child Goku, their head scientist, Dr. Gero, escaped and many years later was responsible for the creation of the Androids and Cell. Magenta, the son of Commander Red, has spent his time hoping to bring about the return of the Red Ribbon Army, using Red Pharmaceuticals as a front. He and his second-in-command Carmine learn of Dr. Hedo, the grandson of Dr. Gero.
As Carmine drives into the Red Ribbon compound, hidden away under a holographic lake, he fails to notice that he is being followed by Hachimaru, Dr. Hedo's spy robot. Carmine delivers a video presentation on Dr. Hedo to Magenta which shows a family tree consisting of his grandfather Dr. Gero, grandmother Vomi and his uncle Gevo, who before his death became the model for Android 16. Although a genius, Dr. Hedo is unable to find steady work due to troubling research which includes resurrecting previously deceased humans and using them to run a convenience store for him in order to shore up research funds, a crime that leaves him imprisoned. Magenta and Carmine decide to meet him outside the prison upon his release.
Dr. Hedo is released from prison, dressed in a superhero style suit and meets Carmine and Magenta, who pull up in a car and invite him in. He reveals he already knows who they are, having used his spy robot to trail them ever since Carmine first came around the prison. Magenta proposes that Dr. Hedo come work for them though he is reluctant, knowing that Red Pharmaceuticals is secretly the Red Ribbon Army, his grandfather’s connection to the organization causing trouble for himself and his parents. As a superhero fan he also takes issue with their plans for world domination. Carmine attempts to threaten Hedo with a gun but Hedo reveals that he's injected himself with serum that toughened his skin to withstand a certain degree of shock. In addition, Hachimaru, which lives in a compartment on his glove, carries a lethal poison. Magenta appeals to his sense of heroism and informs him that they believe Capsule Corporation is serving as the headquarters for a collection of aliens set on world domination themselves, and that the androids and Cell were part of a plan to stop them. He shows Hedo footage of Future Trunks killing Frieza and Hedo agrees to assist them and to contribute his research in creating the ultimate android superheroes.
Six months later, Piccolo trains three-year-old Pan in the woods near his home. Pan wants to learn how to fly but is currently unable to do so. Piccolo tells her not to worry and it will come to her naturally in time. Pan asks if it's true her father could really be stronger than her grandfather Goku, as she's never seen Gohan fight. Piccolo says that he could be, but he isn't so sure about him at the moment. Pan heads off to kindergarten and Piccolo returns to his house.
Piccolo receives a call from Videl asking him to pick Pan up after kindergarten, as she's busy preparing her martial arts school for a tournament and Gohan is busy with his research. Piccolo pays Gohan a visit at his home and asks why he can't go and pick up Pan. Gohan talks about how busy and tries to explain his research but Piccolo isn't interested, instead asking him if his research is more important than family and implores him to train in case evil were to show up again. Gohan, waves off the notion, proclaiming things will be alright as Goku and Vegeta are around. Piccolo throws a punch at Gohan, who blocks it, but Piccolo strikes him in the stomach with another blow. He changes Gohan's clothes into the traditional Piccolo gi and weighted cape with Gohan collapsing under the pressure. Piccolo encourages him to leave it on and agrees to pick up Pan.
Piccolo returns home and begins to meditate when he is suddenly by Gamma 2. He realizes Gamma is an android and notices the Red Ribbon logo. Gamma 2 tells Piccolo he was sent there on a mission to subjugate the Namekian but decides instead to kill him. The two fight and Gamma 2 believes he's killed Piccolo and leaves. Piccolo, having just managed to dodge Gamma 2's attack and slip away in the dust, follows the android back to the Red Ribbon base. There Piccolo subdues a guard and steals his uniform to use as a disguise.
Piccolo finds his way into a control room where Magenta, Carmine, Dr. Hedo and the two Gammas are holding a meeting, along with a number of soldiers standing guard. Gamma 1 chastises Gamma 2 for not confirming Piccolo's death body and reveals via camera footage that he got away. Angry over this, Magenta says that if this mistake reveals their identity to the enemy, they'll have to hasten their plans. He orders Dr. Hedo to finish his work on "Cell Max", but Hedo insists the two Gammas can finish the job on their own. He is also hesitant to activate it as his control system isn't finished, meaning he could easily turn against them. Overhearing the conversation about Cell Max, Piccolo slips away to contact Bulma by phone. He asks if Goku and Vegeta are around, but they're off training with Beerus. He asks Bulma to contact Whis. While waiting he heads to Korin's tower to acquire some Senzu Beans.
On Beerus' Planet, Broly and Goku are engaged in a training match. When Broly starts to get carried away Goku asks him to back down lest he go run rampant. Meanwhile, Vegeta is shown meditating and explains to Goku that this is a form of training. He asks if Goku noticed that at the Tournament of Power, the gap between Jiren and their power may not have been so great in the traditional sense. However, Jiren was able to save all his energy for specific instances of attack. This allowed him to put out greater offensive power, while also saving his strength. Vegeta focuses on being able to fight in the same way.
Whis applauds Vegeta for realizing this and proposes a training match between the three Saiyans but Vegeta refuses if Broly will be joining, as they'll all be in trouble if he gets carried away. Beerus, meanwhile, has woken up from a four-month nap only to find Lemo, Cheelai, and Broly living on his planet. Goku says that this was the best way to keep Broly safe from Frieza. After tasting Lemo's food and finding Cheelai to be attractive, he decides that they can stay. While the others eat ice cream, Broly watches Goku and Vegeta spar. During the match, an ice cream tub flies onto the top of Whis' staff, preventing him from noticing Bulma's call.
On Earth, Korin gives Piccolo the only two Senzu Beans he has. Piccolo gets a call back from Bulma, saying she's had no luck contacting Whis. With few options left to defend the Earth, Piccolo remembers the Grand Elder Guru having unlocked Gohan and Krillin's potential and flies up to Dende to asks if he can perform a similar process for him. Dende says he can't as he is too young but upgrades the Dragon Balls to be able to do so. Piccolo wonders if he can collect the Dragon Balls in time, but Dende notes that Bulma likely already has them gathered. Piccolo heads to Capsule Corporation to meet Bulma.
There, Piccolo takes the first wish and has Shenron unlocks his latent potential, even noting that he also threw in a bonus. Bulma uses the other two wishes on minor cosmetic changes before she realizes to her horror that they could have used a wish to bring Goku and Vegeta back to Earth instead. When Piccolo chastises her for it, she points out that he hadn't thought of it either, and he sheepishly flies back to Red Ribbon HQ.
Back at the base and eager to hasten their plans, Magenta and Carmine devise a plan to lure in Gohan next. Knowing he has a daughter, they decide to kidnap her to lure him to the base, to avoid unveiling themselves to the public. Piccolo, still in his Red Ribbon uniform, volunteers to go on the mission to kidnap Pan as he claims to be familiar with her, being the famous Mr. Satan's granddaughter. Piccolo is paired up with another soldier, #15, for the mission. Piccolo figures that going through with a staged kidnapping may be what it takes to snap Gohan back into action.
The soldier #15 arrives at Pan's kindergarten but is instantly knocked unconscious by her when he tries to claim he's there to take her home. She recognizes Piccolo by his ki and he takes her and the unconscious #15 back onto the Red Ribbon plane. Aboard the plane, Piccolo reveals his plan to her and delivers her to Red Ribbon base. Pan feigns terror in a recording used to lure Gohan in and Piccolo and #15 show up at Gohan's house to deliver the message. Gohan is unperturbed by #15 holding him at gun point but when he pulls out the footage of Pan. Gohan flies out of the window and powers up into Super Saiyan, creating a massive crater that causes his house to topple. In a panic, #15 apologizes and politely asks Gohan to come along, ensuring him Pan is unharmed.
Gohan arrives at the base and immediately rushes toward Pan, who is waiting at the top of a tower behind a crowd of soldiers, the high-ups and the Gammas. Gamma 1 intervenes and the two battles with Gohan being at a disadvantage even as a Super Saiyan. Piccolo and Pan feign a performance in which he acts like he's a soldier and lifts her up by the collar and threatens her only to be surprised when the Gamma's protest his actions. Nevertheless, the move causes Gohan to go Potential Unleashed where he begins to gain the upper hand.
Gamma 2 is ordered into the fight as backup, but Piccolo intervenes to stop him, using his new, awakened form. Gamma 2 reveals he had more power still and puts Piccolo on the back foot again. Momentarily defeated and falling into a crevice in the base, Piccolo remembers Shenron's words about "throwing in a bonus". A sigil alights on his back, his skin turns orange, his antenna stands on end, and he grows bulkier. With this stronger form, he takes out Gamma 2 with a single punch.
Pan meanwhile begins plowing through Red Ribbon soldiers and with Magenta and Carmine seeing the Gammas lose their advantage, they start to retreat. Threatened by Pan, Carmine fires a gun at her, with Pan dodging all of his shots. Outraged at Carmine’s actions, the Gammas finally realize they've been had, and cease their fight with Gohan and Piccolo. Pan knocks out Carmine, while Magenta slips away. Dr. Hedo heads out after him.
The battle seemingly over, everyone regroups, now with the Gammas in tow. Bulma arrives, having brought Trunks, Goten, Krillin and Android 18 as backup. Piccolo is surprised to see Goten and Trunks have grown so much since they last met. Gohan notes that Saiyans remain small until they hit a certain age, at which point they have a radical growth spurt. Gohan asks Piccolo about his new form and Piccolo notes that Shenron was quite generous with his "bonus". Gohan asks him to give it a name and being told by Gohan he was orange; he arbitrarily decides on "Orange Piccolo".
Inside the base, Magenta prepares to awaken Cell Max. When Dr. Hedo tries to stop him, Magenta shoots him and begins to undo more of Cell Max's restraints. Dr. Hedo gets up, reminding him about his toughened skin and. Magenta reveals that he's gone through some upgrades as well removing his suit to show the cybernetically enhanced body underneath. He prepares to fight but is stung on the back of the neck by Hachimaru, whose poison begins killing him. Magenta uses his final moments to undo the final locks on Cell Max who begins to break free from his chamber.
The sky darkens, and Cell Max, a gigantic, red creature resembling second-form Cell with wings, explodes form below the base. Piccolo tosses a Senzu Bean to Gohan, but he fails to catch it without his glasses on and it falls into a crevice. Goten, Trunks, 18, the Gammas, Piccolo and Gohan, tired from his previous battle and only capable of going Super Saiyan, charge into combat against Cell Max, while Krillin stays back with Pan and Bulma.
The Gammas reveal that Dr. Hedo had built a weakness into the top of Cell Max's head. They'll have to penetrate it to kill him. With no one able to make much progress and Cell Max shrugging off even a Special Beam Cannon from Piccolo aimed directly at his weak point, Goten and Trunks attempt to fuse. They slip up, producing the fat version of Gotenks. Gotenks attempts to go Super Saiyan but fails. After being pinballed around from Cell Max to several other characters, he headbutts Cell Max directly on the weak point, producing some cracks on Cell Max's head.
Gamma 2 plans to sacrifice himself to deliver the final blow, gathering all his energy from above, and driving himself through Cell Max. With the cooperation of the rest of the team, Cell Max is put in a position for the charged-up Gamma 2 to strike, but he's blocked at the last second, only managing to take off Cell Max's arm. To escape the resulting explosion, Pan finally learns to fly.
Enraged, Cell Max tries to stomp the unconscious Dr. Hedo and Gamma 2's lifeless body, but Piccolo intervenes, returning to his Orange Piccolo form to hold up Cell Max's foot. Krillin reminds him of his gigantification technique from the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament and encourages him to use it. Piccolo become a giant but still struggles against Cell Max. Piccolo puts his hopes in Gohan, telling him that he will hold Cell Max in place long enough for Gohan to get in one, full-power attack on the weak point. He offers Gohan the last Senzu Bean from his belt and engages in an uphill battle with support from the others, while Gohan charges his power.
Cell Max manages an attack that seems as if it's killed Piccolo, causing Gohan to awaken past his Potential Unleashed into a new form with white hair and red irises. Gohan easily withstands Cell Max's attack before returning one of his own, overwhelming him. Cell Max begins charging a massive ball of energy, which he collapses into a concentrated attack.
Piccolo recovers and holds Cell Max in place. Cell Max tosses his energy ball and Gohan performs a Special Beam Cannon, running through both Cell Max's attack and his head. Cell Max falls to the ground and explodes, while the group escape from the blast.
In the aftermath, Pan runs up to Gohan and Piccolo who revert to normal. Gohan and Pan embrace and Piccolo congratulates Gohan. Gohan notes that even had his father and Vegeta been around, they may not have been able to defeat Cell Max. Piccolo says that's exactly why it's important for Gohan to stay prepared. Gamma 2, drained of energy, disintegrates as Dr. Hedo and Gamma 1 watch. Piccolo states that in the end, Gamma 2 really was a superhero. Dr. Hedo is repentant of his actions, knowing he was being used and chose not to care and offers to hand himself over to the police. However, Bulma offers the repentant Dr. Hedo and Gamma 1 places at Capsule Corporation as Dr. Hedo's skin serum may prove useful in cosmetic research. With the latest threat dealt with, Pan happily flies around everyone.
In a post-credit scene, Vegeta and Goku are both exhausted from their fight to the point that they can hardly move. Vegeta throws a weak punch at Goku, who finally topples over, followed by Vegeta. Vegeta happily remarks that he finally won. Beerus has fallen asleep while Cheelai is happy that their dull fight is finally over, but Lemo and Broly have both been moved to tears.
Pan is three years old in the film, indicating that it takes place around more than a year before the Peaceful World Saga, where she is four. The film occurs at some point after the Galactic Patrol Prisoner Saga, and presumably by extension the Granolah the Survivor Saga. However the film was written purely as a sequel to Broly, and so the Galactic Patrol Prisoner and Granolah the Survivor Sagas are not referenced due to being created in parallel with the film.
The original series author Akira Toriyama once again provides the original concept, writing the script (including every detail of the dialogue), and drawing character designs for the film (changing pre-existing characters to their manga designs instead of those used in the anime). It has been said that he is even more invested in this film than the prior three he wrote. The Red Ribbon Army were picked as antagonists since they didn't make a big splash in the original manga. Super is used twice in the film's name as Toriyama forgot that the main title was Dragon Ball Super rather than just Dragon Ball. The double usage is unintentional. Production began in 2017, the final draft was produced after two years.
Toriyama does not script out battle scenes beyond "and now these two characters have a big battle".
At Comic-Con 2021, more details were announced as well as the film's title. Character designs for Piccolo, Pan, Dende, Bulma, Krillin and a new character(s) were shown, as well as the design for Piccolo's House. The way Goku will be animated in CGI was also shown in a brief preview.
|Character Name||Voice Actor (Japanese)||Voice Actor (English)|
|Gohan||Masako Nozawa||Kyle Hebert|
|Piccolo||Toshio Furukawa||Christopher Sabat|
|Pan||Yūko Minaguchi||Jeannie Tirado|
|Goku||Masako Nozawa||Sean Schemmel|
|Vegeta||Ryō Horikawa||Christopher Sabat|
|Krillin||Mayumi Tanaka||Sonny Strait|
|Bulma||Aya Hisakawa||Monica Rial|
|Trunks||Takeshi Kusao||Eric Vale|
|Goten||Masako Nozawa||Robert McCollum|
|Gotenks (Fat)||Masako Nozawa
|Android 18||Miki Itō||Meredith McCoy|
|Broly||Bin Shimada||Johnny Yong Bosch|
|Beerus||Kōichi Yamadera||Jason Douglas|
|Whis||Masakazu Morita||Ian Sinclair|
|Yajirobe||Mayumi Tanaka||Mike McFarland|
|Korin||Ken Uo||Christopher Sabat|
|Dende||Aya Hirano||Justin Cook|
|Cheelai||Nana Mizuki||Erica Lindbeck|
|Lemo||Tomokazu Sugita||Bruce Carey|
|Videl||Yūko Minaguchi||Kara Edwards|
|Gamma 1||Hiroshi Kamiya||Aleks Le|
|Gamma 2||Mamoru Miyano||Zeno Robinson|
|Dr. Hedo||Miyu Irino||Zach Aguilar|
|Magenta||Volcano Ota||Charles Martinet|
|Carmine||Ryota Takeuchi||Jason Marnocha|
|Cell Max||Norio Wakamoto||Dameon Clarke|
- Piccolo vs. Pan
- Piccolo vs. Gamma 2
- Goku vs. Vegeta
- Gohan (Base/Super Saiyan/Potential Unleashed) vs. Gamma 1
- Piccolo (Potential Unleashed/Orange Piccolo) vs. Gamma 2
- Piccolo (Orange Piccolo) vs. Red Pharmaceuticals soldiers
- Pan vs. Red Pharmaceuticals soldiers
- Pan vs. Carmine
- Dr. Hedo and Hachimaru vs. Magenta
- Gamma 1 and Gamma 2 vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Super Saiyan), Piccolo (Potential Unleashed), Goten, Trunks, and Android 18 vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Super Saiyan), Piccolo (Potential Unleashed), Goten, Trunks, Android 18, Gamma 1, and Gamma 2 vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Super Saiyan), Piccolo (Potential Unleashed), Android 18, Gamma 1, Gamma 2, and Gotenks (Fat) vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Super Saiyan), Piccolo (Potential Unleashed), Android 18, Gamma 1, Gamma 2, Gotenks (Fat), and Krillin vs. Cell Max
- Piccolo (Potential Unleashed/Orange Piccolo/Great Namekian), Gohan (Super Saiyan), Krillin, and Gotenks (Fat) vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Potential Unleashed) and Piccolo (Orange Piccolo; Great Namekian) vs. Cell Max
- Piccolo (Orange Piccolo; Great Namekian) vs. Cell Max
- Gotenks (Fat), Krillin, Android 18, and Gamma 1 vs. Cell Max
- Piccolo (Orange Piccolo; Great Namekian) vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Gohan Beast) vs. Cell Max
- Gohan (Gohan Beast) and Piccolo (Orange Piccolo; Great Namekian) vs. Cell Max
- Prior to its announcement, a leaked forum on Toei Animation Europe's official website accidentally leaked the news of the new Dragon Ball film two days before its initial announcement.
- This is the third theatrical film to feature the Red Ribbon Army as the primary antagonists after Dragon Ball: The Path to Power and Dragon Ball Z: Super Android 13!.
- This is the first film to have Piccolo as the main protagonist, instead of Goku or Gohan. It is also the second film to have Goku play no role in the overall conflict, after Dragon Ball Z: Bio-Broly.
- Great Ape and Super Saiyan 2 are the only form of Gohan's that aren't used in a fight in the film. Though Super Saiyan 2 does make a brief appearance in the film's intro recapping Cell's defeat.
- This is the first time Johnny Yong Bosch voices Broly in a project where Vic Mignogna is not involved as previous projects still had Vic as Broly while Johnny was the DBS version or redub his performances.
- This is the first time Robert McCollum voices the Dragon Ball Super version of Goten having already voiced his Teen versions for Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball GT.
- This is the first time a Dragon Ball project has been distributed under the "Crunchyroll" Banner following Funimation`s rebrand to Crunchyroll as of August 2022.
- Dragon Ball Super: SUPER HERO Reveals Global Theatrical Release Dates, English Dub Cast. Crunchyroll.
- Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Runtime Surfaces Online. comicbook.
- A big announcement! New "Dragon Ball Super" movie is planned for 2022! Take a look at author Akira Toriyama's comment!. dragon-ball-official.
- Dragon Ball Special Panel | Comic-Con@Home 2021. youtube.
- Pan SH Bio.
- 2021 New York Comi-Con panel
- V Jump June 2022 Special: "Gohan's Growth as seen from Piccolo's point of view". V Jump.
- Ciphers translation of Iyoku interview. Twitter. Retrieved on June 21, 2022.
- Herms' tweet on Toriyama comments. Twitter. Retrieved on June 15, 2022.
- Toriyama interview in pamphlet
- Herms' tweet on Iyoku interview. Twitter. Retrieved on June 14, 2022.