DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year

Movie review by
Renee Schonfeld, Common Sense Media
DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year Movie Poster Image
Action-packed teen superhero tale has comic book violence.
  • NR
  • 2016
  • 76 minutes

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 5 reviews

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Educational Value

Meant to entertain rather than educate.

Positive Messages

Promotes teamwork, perseverance, staying true to oneself, and giving second chances.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Female characters are as courageous, smart, and effective as their male counterparts in other superhero stories. Multiethnic (and multispecies) heroes work well together and protect each other. Parental figures are reliable and loving and root for their kids' success. 

Violence & Scariness

Lots of cartoon violence: explosions, lasers, falls, captures, hand-to-hand battles, swordplay, scary villains, and life-or-death moments. The heroic teen girls are in jeopardy in multiple sequences. Cackling, power-hungry villains have superpowers and use their slithering, shadowy, sharp-toothed accomplices to threaten everyone. No serious injuries or deaths.

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Another entry in the vast DC Comics-Warner Bros. animation franchise. This is the first full-length feature emanating from a 2015–2016 YouTube television series. Toys and related products are sold everywhere.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year is the first feature-length movie based on two seasons of DC Super Hero Girls, very short "webisodes" that aired online in 2015 and 2016. The movie also ties in with the DC Comics-Time Warner-Mattel release of action figures and products related to the high school-age versions of established female comic book characters, both heroes and villains. Audiences meet perennial favorites (i.e., Super Girl, Bat Girl, Wonder Woman) as kids and get a glimpse of their backstories, family relationships, and individual personalities. Though focused on the girls, this film doesn't stint on the superhero action. There are enough battles, explosions, evildoers, and threats to the planet to satisfy cartoon action fans and to keep the story moving swiftly. In this first film installment, the antagonists come from outside of Super Hero High, so the ethnically diverse schoolmates (familiar as "good" guys and "bad" guys) must band together to defeat them. This is OK for kids who are comfortable with pretend vs. real violence.

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User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 5-year-old Written byStephanie C. May 3, 2018

Strong girls!

I was a little cautious because it was listed as 7+ but after watching an episode I let my 5 year old super-hero-loving twin girls watch it. There’s some fighti... Continue reading
Parent of a 10, 12, and 15-year-old Written byHendo H. U December 28, 2017

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's the story?

An assortment of long-established comic book kids of Super Hero High School is eagerly awaiting the upcoming ceremony in DC SUPER HERO GIRLS: HERO OF THE YEAR. Who will be the chosen "hero" this year? And just as they're adjusting to the fact that former nemesis Big Barda has enrolled at SPHS, some strange things happen that set everyone on edge. Special gems and personal treasures are stolen! A shadowy figure is seen menacing the building. Bat Girl (Mae Whitman), Super Girl (Anais Fairweather), Wonder Woman (Grey Griffin), and their assorted quirky buddies determine to solve the mysteries. Unfortunately, they're not aware of the imminent presence of supervillain Eclipso (formerly a male DC comic villain, now a woman voiced by Mona Marshall) and her plans to control the planet with darkness. With supervillain Dark Opal to assist in her evil plot, Eclipso needs only Super Girl's special crystal given to her by her family on Krypton to complete the weapon that will make it all possible. Will the superheroes find a way to uncover Eclipso's terrible plot? And which of them will use her most special talents to foil that plot and win Hero of the Year?

Is it any good?

With the emphasis here on teen girls in action mode, these superheroes are proactive, competent, courageous, and, best of all, not shopping, flirting, and primping. While the animation is routine and the story sometimes overpopulated and overcomplicated, the performances are upbeat and fun. Younger kids might not be able to follow all the intricacies of broken shields, quick trips to other planets, missing gems, and even a "helicopter" mom, but it doesn't really matter. Rooting interest is strong in DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year. Dependent upon one's viewpoint about violence -- does it go down easier when girls are wielding the weapons and the spells? -- this franchise will find an audience. And it will certainly be another marketing bonanza for DC Comics, Warner Bros., and Mattel.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how DC Super Hero Girls: Hero of the Year shows girls at the heart of the cartoon action and violence. They are just as brave, enterprising, and powerful as their male counterparts. Is this a good thing? Why, or why not?

  • Have you noticed that while girls will often watch shows that appeal mostly to boys, boys don't often respond to female-centered kids' programming? Because the film includes traditional superhero action (i.e., battles to save the planet, hand-to-hand combat with evil villains), do you think boys will find the story entertaining and help change that practice? 

  • This franchise is set in a special high school, featuring long-established characters in their early years. Do you like seeing these icons as they grow up, developing their skills and personalities? How does it enhance a marketing brand's ability to reach younger kids?

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