Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Production Team Explains Return Of Red Ribbon Army, Teases Debut Of Teenage Gotenks

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

During a recent Dragon Ball live-event, the production team behind the beloved shonen series’ upcoming film, Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero, revealed a bevy of new information about the project, including insight into their decision to bring back the Red Ribbon Army and a tease of the possible appearance of a teenage Gotenks.

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

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These new details surrounding the film were revealed during a Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero-centric panel held during the recent Dragon Ball Games Battle Hour 2022.

Hosted by an MC by the name of Sascha, the panel’s guests included Shueisha executive producer Akio Iyoku, Toei Animation producer Norihiro Hayashida, and – making his on-camera debut – the film’s director, Tetsuro Kodama.

[Time Stamp: 07:02:40]

The panel began with a discussion of the film’s previously released key visual.

Drawn by series creator Akira Toriyama himself, the key visual sees newcomers Gamma 1 and Gamma 2, Goku, Piccolo, Vegeta, Gohan, Pan, and three as-of-yet-unidentified Red Ribbon associates standing in front of the latter group’s limousine.

“Up until now, Goku has always been the main focus but from the start Toriyama sensei said that we would be seeing a lot from characters we may not expect,” said Iyoku. “So with that in mind, we decided to have them take center stage here, meaning Gohan and Piccolo will have a prominent role.”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Official Website

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“Pan is also out in front,” he noted. “She’s a little older than we’ve seen her so far. Maybe she’s one of the superheroes this time.”

Iyoku also touched upon the purple-suited man seen in the image, Dr. Hedo, noting that he’s wearing a “uniform” and is “a scientist…and maybe a hero too?”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

The producer then moved to reveal that there was a second part to this key visual, unfolding the image to unveil images of Bulma, Android 18, Krillin, and – in a particular shock to long-time Dragon Ball fans – teenaged versions of Goten and Trunks.

“Some time has passed since the events that unfolded in Broly,” he noted. “Thus, Goten and Trunks have grown a bit older. They’ve gotten taller.”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero Official Website

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Taking notice of how the two half-Saiyans were in the middle of the Fusion Dance, Sascha asked the panel if audiences would see a fusion in the film, to which Kodama vaguely asserted, “Well, when it comes to Goten and Trunks, Fusion is only natural.”

Sascha also pointed out the misalignment of the pair’s fingers, asserting, “Ah this must be the Fusion which is not the right one. Like how we saw big Gogeta before. And there was that slim Gogeta too, right?”

“When it comes to these two, they’re going to do the Fusion at some point” teased Iyoku. “I’m not sure how that’ll play out in the film, but if they’re both there, they might have done it.”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Broly (2018), Toei Animation

Following the premiere and discussion of some new footage, as presented below by Dragon Ball Twitter news account @DBSHype, the panel turned to the topic of the Red Ribbon Army and their role as the film’s apparent antagonists.

“How we ended up deciding whether or not to include the Red Ribbon Army was we first talked about how we wanted the battle to take place on Earth,” recalled Iyoku.


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“Because the franchise has become so intergalactic in scale?” asked Sascha. 

“That’s right,” replied the producer. “So when we decided to have them fight on Earth, we started saying, ‘Once, there was a Red Ribbon Army’ and how it could be a battle against an army, not just one-on-one and everyone in the army has their own motivations and way of thinking, including [new villains] Magenta and Carmine.” 

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

He continued, “So we thought that because not everyone thinks the same way, we would be able to paint a picture of an interesting antagonist, which is how we ended up settling on the Red Ribbon Army.”

Sascha then inquired, “So they’re not a cohesive organization?”, prompting Iyoku to confirm “Exactly.”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

“It might have been a wrong idea, we still don’t know,” the Shueisha producer joked. “However, we thought it would be great if we take advantage of this framework to make an enemy more interesting,  which made the Red Ribbon Army appear in the story.”

Source: Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero (2022), Toei Animation

Finally, in conclusion to the panel, the trio announced that the film would be coming to North America this summer, though no specific date for its premiere was given.

Are you excited for Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!

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