Review: Hitorijime My Hero, Vol. 1 | Memeco Arii

This review is spoiler free.

“Ever since I was little I’ve hated that kiddie tokusatsu stuff, with the masked heroes. No matter how tough things got, a hero would never come to save me.”

Series: Hitorijime My Hero
Published: 2019, by Kodansha Comics.
Format: Paperback
Genre: Sequential Art, Manga, Romance, LGBT, Contemporary
Contains: Sexual Content, Strong Language, Blood/Gore, Violence

‘Hitorijime My Hero, Vol. 1’ follows Masahiro Setagawa who doesn’t believe in heroes, but wishes he could. He’s found himself trapped in a gang of small-time street bullies, and with no prospects for a real future. But when high school teacher Kousuke Ohshiba comes to his rescue, he finds he may start believing in heroes after all… and in his budding feelings too.

This manga is one I’ve had my eyes on for a while, the cover immediately attracting me along with the contents within. However, I wasn’t expecting to find another manga to get invested in until now.

Masahira “Setti” Setagawa is a really fun and interesting protagonist, running with small-time street bullies as their underling and slowly earning the respect of those around him. However, when his devotion is questioned, he immediately stands up for himself and becomes a new-found respected person. He wants out of this life and Kousuke Ohshiba is his ticket out of it, and he immediately jumps to him.
Kousuke Ohshiba is another fascinating character with a darker backstory which is highlighted in this instalment. I’m so excited to delve further into the story, wanting to learn more and more about his reputation and the relationship between him and Setti. This volume drip-feeds you information, luring you to read more and more.

Admittedly, I wasn’t aware of this being a spin-off manga prior to reading this volume, so it doesn’t hold your hand and guide you through the backstories of these characters – you’re expected to know from the get-go. However, I still found it an enjoyable experience and managed to understand the contents by the end of this volume. I am intrigued to go back and discover more about the story prior though. I will say, however, that the structure of the dialogue is a little difficult at times, there being a lack of guidance of who is speaking on certain pages and such. Although, this is a problematic relationship regarding a student and teacher, it was handled maturely and even addresses the many issues involved; it’s not an unaware or disregarded circumstance, which I appreciate.

Overall, I deeply enjoyed this introductory volume, however, there are a few issues regarding the dialogue and structure on occasion, yet it doesn’t hinder the enjoyment of the story as a whole.


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