Hitorijime My Hero focusses on the romance story between two of the side characters in Hitorijime Boyfriend. Masahiro Setagawa, or Settie as he’s referred to by his delinquent friends, struggles to have a normal life. Luckily Kousuke Oshiba takes him under his wing, but does this improve Masahiro’s chances of living a carefree life?
Studio: Encourage Films
Genres: Slice of Life, School, Shounen Ai
Based on eponymous manga by Memeco Arii.
Started airing: 8th of July 2017
Number of episodes: 12
Episode duration: 24 minutes
Masahiro Setagawa’s life has been far from easy, with a mother who doesn’t look after him and a group of delinquents that use him as their errand boy: Masahiro is desperately in need of a hero. Enter Kousuke Oshiba, a man who is known for his fighting skills, whose reputation has earned him the title ‘The Bear Killer’. Despite his title Kousuke soon becomes the hero that Masahiro needs, someone who looks out for him. As they grow closer Masahiro can’t help but get more and more involved in Kousuke’s affairs.
Hitorijime My Hero, also known as My Very Own Hero, follows their relationship as it develops from apprenticeship to a romance.
Hitorijime My Hero fits very well in the Shounen Ai genre, with some clichés but also a lot of heart-warming and funny moments. Although there are some ‘standard’ Shounen Ai parts to the story there are also some more original or unexpected turns in it. Masahiro and Kousuke’s relationship is the main focus in this anime, but there is also another romantic couple whose story gets told in this 12 episode long anime. It’s a fun and mostly light-hearted anime which, although somewhat recognizable in storyline, is probably a nice series to watch for any Shounen Ai fan.
One of the lesser point of this anime was the animation, or rather lack of consistency in animation. The quality of the animations varied quite a bit, which stood out to me a lot and was bothersome when watching. Some running sequences, for instance, were done so poorly that it took the drama away from the moment. It made it almost funny when it wasn’t meant to be.
Want to know how this rating came together? Keep reading!
The main focus of Hitorijime My Hero is romance, but it doesn’t dive right into that from the first second. This anime builds up to it quite a bit, as it would take time for the characters to come together and come to terms with their feelings for one another.
Something I didn’t enjoy a lot, but is present in almost every Shounen Ai series, were the more ‘standard’ themes. For instance the age gap between the two main characters, which occurs in quite a few Shounen Ai, and the denial of having feelings for men.
I didn’t quite mind the age gap, as it presented a challenge for them: how to keep a romance between a student and a teacher a secret. But, to my surprise, there actually weren’t any real complications. No one told on them, everyone around them seemed fine with the relations, except the one friend who was temporarily disgusted, and they seemed to be more worried about it then they needed to be.
I can’t say you’ll get to know a lot about the history of the characters. You will see a little background on their relationships or rather on how they got to know one another. There is no real background for instance on how exactly Masahiro and his mother ended up in such bad conditions, or who or where Masahiro’s father is. I’m sure the manga elaborates on the character’s backgrounds more, but the anime doesn’t.
There are quite a few characters in this series, but the story mainly focusses around the two couples, Kousuke and Masahiro and Kousuke’s brother Kensuke and Asaya. Both couples have their own struggles in becoming and staying a happy couple, but they also have quite a few happy moments.
This series’ animation and drawing style are usually okay, but lacking sometimes, for instance in episode 10 when Kousuke drives away in the car with Masahiro. As he talks to Asaya his movements are weird, as are Asaya’s. There are also quite a few running sequence scenes that look poorly executed, almost hilarious even. The more zoomed in scenes, where you can’t see the characters full bodies, seem better animated or at least animated in a more detailed manner.
The style itself, when properly executed, fits well with the manga’s style even though it’s not entirely identical. The studios hasn’t produced a lot of anime yet, about 9 at this point, so this might explain the lack in consistency mentioned above.
The intro & outro
Hitorijime My Hero’s intro song, ‘Heart Signal (ハートシグナル)’ by Wataru Hatano, has a pretty upbeat rhythm. Despite the images and animations shown being pretty calm it still fits well together. The characters are introduced in a fun way.
The outro song, ‘TRUE LOVE’, is sung by different people in different episodes, the actors portraying the main characters take turns singing the song. It’s very clearly an outro, as it is a very calm song.