Dragon Ball & My Hero Academia Star Explains the Impact of Both Series on Fans

Anime is exploding in popularity all over the world, thanks to a wave of new crossover series that have captured the attention of a global fanbase. Two of the biggest mainstream anime of the moment are definitely Dragon Ball Super and My Hero Academia, and one actor has the particular honor of playing iconic characters in both!

Christopher Sabat provides the voices of Vegeta and All Might in Dragon Ball Super and My Hero Academia (respectively). During a recent interview with ComicBook.com, Chris Sabat broke down whey Dragon Ball Super and My Hero Academia have had such big impact on fans. According to the actor, the two series may be similar in their level of impact, but have connected with fans for very different reasons.

Here's Sabat's breakdown of Dragon Ball, and why the series' sometimes gimmicky format is also it's biggest and best selling point with fans:

"It's been really inspiring... You know "Dragon Ball's" famous for making people really want to push past their limits, and do the best they can possibly do, and never tap out on your power, you know what I mean? You just keep powering up and powering up."

Now compare that to Sabat's breakdown of My Hero Academia, which he proclaims connects to people for a very different reason:

"...All Might, and 'My Hero Academia,' does something different for people. It almost gives people who feel disenfranchised, or feel like they don't have a special skill-- It gives them hope that there is this special thing, that's waiting for them, too, and it's been inspiring for people, in a completely different, but equal way. And it's just neat to see both of those fans kind of come up and see me at the same time. It's great."

That's a pretty astute breakdown of both Dragon Ball and My Hero Academia - one that's pretty hard to argue against. Seeing Goku and Vegeta constantly break through their limits - in order to achieve new powers and conquer bigger challenges - is what some analysts refer to as "Power-up fantasy." It's why Dragon Ball has been particularly popular in with historically oppressed or marginalized people, creating huge fandoms in places like South America or Africa - not to mention with athletes and other public figures whose careers are based in competition and self-evolution. Meanwhile, My Hero Academia has moved fans to tears (repeatedly) with its heartfelt moments of an unlikely weakling (Deku) finding the mettle and courage to be a greater hero than all the rest. So many people attracted to geek culture have that very dream (to discover they are more than society labels them), and My Hero Academia makes the fantasy feel so emotionally real.

Which series is your favorite right now: Dragon Ball Super or My Hero Academia? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!


Dragon Ball Super currently airs its English dub on Adult Swim during the Toonami programming block on Saturday evenings. It is also available to stream on Funimation and Amazon Video. The Japanese-language release of the series is complete, and available to stream on FunimationNOW and Crunchyroll. The manga has chapters that can currently be read for free thanks to Viz Media, and Dragon Ball Super's big movie, Dragon Ball Super: Broly, is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.

My Hero Academia was created by Kohei Horikoshi and has been running in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump since July 2014. The story follows Izuku Midoriya, who lives in a world where everyone has powers, even though he was born without them. Dreaming to become a superhero anyway, he's eventually scouted by the world's best hero All Might and enrolls in a school for professional heroes. The series has been licensed by Viz Media for an English language release since 2015. My Hero Academia is gearing up for an even bigger end of 2019 with both a fourth season of the anime and second big anime film.