I watched Hitorijime My Hero back in 2018 when I was teaching at a Uni somewhere in my hometown. I was surprised why this seemingly ‘innocent’ anime was trashed for having a teacher-student romantic liaison.

Hitorijime My Hero – ひとりじめマイヒーロー, also known as My Very Own Hero, is a Japanese yaoi manga series written and illustrated by Memeco Arii. It’s all about the romance between (1) a teacher and his student, and (2) the teacher’s younger brother with his childhood friend.

It has been serialized in Ichijinsha’s Gateau since February 2012. An anime television series adaptation by Encourage Films aired from July 8, 2017, to September 23, 2017, and is licensed in English by Sentai Filmworks.

Hitorijime My Hero Trailer | Avex Pictures


Masahiro Setagawa has stopped believing in heroes as he believes that heroes do not truly exist, especially since he has been getting into a lot of trouble. He’s been coerced into joining a gang and is often bullied and used as a gopher boy. However, soon an infamous street fighter named Kousuke Ooshiba, or the “Bear Killer” inadvertently saves him. This man happens to be the older brother of his best friend Kensuke Ooshiba and his current homeroom teacher.

Now Kousuke has claimed Masahiro as his “underling” and promises to protect him, but the feelings seem to run far deeper for both. Meanwhile, Kensuke is reunited with an old friend Asaya Hasekura, a popular pretty boy who declares his love for Kensuke and leaves Kensuke confused and unsure.


Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

I personally believe that we need a hero or at least someone we look up to. A hero is not necessarily someone who has superpowers, but rather someone we can relate to and who can influence us to do the right thing. That someone also exerts effort to come to our rescue – not joining in a fist fight – but rather sharing our beliefs and is willing to bear witness to our collective ideals. That sounded too idealistic or even a cliche to others, but having witnessed the deaths of loved ones in the COVID-19 pandemic has made me realize what is truly important.

After a few years, I went back to watch Hitorijime My Hero for the 2nd time. What strikes me the most is Setagawa’s lonely existence and how he changed – physically and mentally – upon the arrival of the “Bear killer”. I find it offensive that some people raise the issue of an age gap and ‘inappropriateness’. I think they completely missed the point.

It’s about meaningful relationships – it’s not just being serious, but rather enjoying each other’s company and even having heated arguments on the side. Yeah, the anime has plenty of comedic moments too, that’s why it’s worth watching!