"The Hero" is the first part of the 9th episode of Wander Over Yonder.
In this fairy tale adventure, Wander and Sylvia work with Sir Brad Starlight, a heroic knight, to help save a princess from the evil dragon king. But along the way, Brad's rescue is constantly disrupted when Wander goes too far and ends up taking all the heroic duties to himself.
In a storybook opening, a prophecy explains that the beloved Princess Demurra has been captured by King Draykor, the evil dragon king, and imprisoned with him among to his Labyrinth of Delusion. However, only one hero can save her... her one true love, and when she's saved, they'll live happily ever after and help the other citizens live happily ever after as well.
The hero, Sir Brad Starlight the knight, is determined to save Demurra before Draykor marries her at sundown. He asks his recruited sidekicks, Sylvia and a rather overexcited Wander, to help him save her, much to Wander's delight as he's always wanted to save a princess. Brad reminds Wander that even though he likes his enthusiasm, he is the hero and Wander and Sylvia are his goofy sidekick and noble steed (Much to Sylvia's disgust) respectively. Wander reminds Sylvia that there's a princess who needs to be saved, and she reluctantly agrees with him, "But only 'cause we're helpin' a sister out", she quotes.
The trio set out on their quest, with Brad riding Sylvia as Wander follows behind them and sings Brad's theme song. They approach the Labyrinth of Delusion, Wander rushing off at first before being stopped by Brad again. He again reminds him that the hero leads the way, and all three enter. Wander strives down a nice, peaceful spot of the maze but Brad says it's a trap and a thorny portion is the right path. Sylvia is raged at this, but Brad calms her down by tying her to a tree branch and feeding her a carrot. He then sets off with Wander following him.
Brad and Wander come across a myriad of obstacles in their trap, the former telling the latter that only one with "big, heroey muscles" can make it through, like himself. This is briefly proven wrong as Wander goes far ahead of him and makes it through every trap unharmed. Brad assumes it's a warm-up challenge and tries to follow him, but fails and constantly stalls, losing his sword in the process. On the other side, Sylvia joins Wander, who tells Brad that she took the other path, which wasn't a trap at all and turned out pleasant, and also had free lemonade. He reminds him that the path was a pattern, and is about to say more when Brad refuses help from him and decides to figure it out himself. He fails, and ends up getting hurt by the traps, also losing half of his cape to a griffin.
Brad blames Wander for what he did, as he lost his sword and the prophecy states the hero needs a sword. Wander shows him another sword, which turns out to be the mysterious Sword of Destiny. As Brad talks about the sword's back story, Wander pulls it out for him but immediately puts it back after Brad tells him that the hero needs it. But Brad cannot pull the sword out easily like Wander did, and ends up breaking off the sword's hilt, proclaiming it's better that way.
They finally reach Draykor's castle, Brad preparing to enter while giving a speech that no barrier will keep he and Demurra from each other. This is briefly stopped when Wander opens the door, which was unlocked, but closes it so Brad can make a dramatic entrance. Just after this, Draykor's hog guards spot them and Wander and Sylvia begin to take them down, only to be stopped by Brad, who once again says that he has to save Demurra like what the prophecy said. Instantly, the hogs take them prisoner.
The hogs take the trio to a room where Draykor greets them and explains his plan to marry Demurra. He is interrupted by the arrival of the princess, whom Wander and Sylvia say she's beautiful and pink respectively, and she calms him down, revealing he's not so bad like Brad thought.
Demurra notices what Brad did and has the hogs free him along with Wander and Sylvia. Brad shows her the prophecy, which she claims to be his diary from when they were fifteen, and gives him a talk that things don't turn out like he expected and life isn't a fairy tale, and adds they can just be friends. At first Brad is content, but he immediately declines and escapes with her, proclaiming that she'll be his and the prophecy will be fulfilled.
Draykor asks Wander to help him since he's the only one who's brave enough to face the Labyrinth of Delusion he set up to stop Brad from stealing Demurra. Wander excitedly accepts, hence he always wanted to save a princess, and gives a speech to everyone that they have a new bad guy and they're all going to be heroes. They burst out of the room to save Demurra, only to see that she has taken care of Brad herself. Draykor adds this is why he loves her.
Some time later, Draykor and Demurra are married, and Wander adds they lived happily ever after. Demurra and Draykor go into a talk about real romances taking a lot of work, but Wander stops them and proclaims they did live happily ever after and they kinda sorta saved a princess, ending the story.
A visualized version of, "The Tale of Brad Starlight".
Sir Brad Starlight: Ohhohohoho, you poor silly, stupid sidekick, that way is clearly a trap! (Shows a part of the maze that's dark and viney) This is the correct path!
Wander: Copy that! Whoop-a-deedy-doo! (Trips) Splat!
Sylvia: And pink Eugh!
Wander: And they lived happily ever after!
Princess Demurra: Well, that's the plan, but real relationships take a lot of work.
King Draykor: However, if we listen, communicate, and are sensitive to each other's needs --
- Lord Hater and Peepers don't appear in this episode.
- Running gags: Brad treating Sylvia like a horse and Sylvia eating or drinking something when she doesn't care.
- The title refers to Brad constantly referring to himself as the hero and that he should do the saving.
- The fourth wall is broken at the end, when Wander says to the audience "And they lived happily ever after!".
- This is the first episode to premiere on Disney XD US before it premieres on Disney Channel US.
- A clue that Brad is not the hero he claims he is, is when he tries to removes the Sword of Destiny from the stone, which he claims only a hero can do. He can't do it, while Wander, a true hero, can.
- In Portugal, this episode (oddly) aired as a preview before officially premiere in January.
- This is the first time Wander recruits help from someone other than Sylvia on his usual helpings.
- First episode to show only an empty space at the beginning, no planets at all.
- It's revealed Wander always wanted to save a princess.
- First episode in which the overview of the episode's planet is never shown.
- This is the first time a humanoid appears in the Wander Over Yonder universe.
- This is the second time we see a unique font on the title card rather than the usual bubble letters. The first time was in "The Pet".
- Second time someone who was bad actually turned out to be good ("The Bad Guy").
- Second episode where the title card finishes someone's sentence ("The Greatest").
- Second time whistling vocals accompany Wander's song ("The Good Deed").
- A part of The Tale of Brad Starlight sounds like the song The Bronco's Buck from "The Egg".
- In the episode, a instrumental version of the song, "What's In The Box?" from, "The Box" is played.
- When Wander starts to take the path through a peaceful hedge maze, Brad declines and says they should take the path through a thorny maze, similar to what Westley did in "The Little Guy".
- Wander actually gets to save a princess later in "The Epic Quest of Unfathomable Difficulty!!!".
- When the camera zooms in on Wander singing, his banjo is more oval shaped than rounded.
- Sylvia is annoyed with Brad riding her and she doesn't let just anyone ride her, but in "The Good Deed" Fleeblebort rode her, and in "The Little Guy" Westley rode her, both times she showed no signs of annoyance of someone other than Wander riding her. It's possible this occurs before "The Good Deed" or Sylvia doesn't remember it. It's also possible Brad is too heavy for her, that he's too big to carry unlike Wander, Fleeblebort, and Westley who are smaller, or she is aware of Brad's arrogant nature, and refuses to help him on principle.
- When Wander grabs Sylvia to tell her there's a princess in danger, Brad's cape is not blowing.
- During some scenes, the dark blonde hair line under Princess Demurra's tiara turns dark pink.
- When Princess Demurra ends her talk with Brad stating they can just be friends, a few of her animal friends are surrounding her. But after Brad says "No!", the animals are gone.
- Sylvia is nowhere to be seen at the wedding.
- When Brad takes Demurra just before he escapes with her, part of his arm is superimposed over Demurra's body.
- In some scenes, the belt and inside of Wander's hat and Sylvia's rein are dark blue instead of black, and during the scenes inside Draykor's castle (except the wedding), Wander's socks turn an unusually dark grey.
- When the trio is meeting Draykor and Demurra is talking to Wander and Sylvia, hog guards are behind them, but when the camera zooms in on Wander and Sylvia in close up, the hogs are not there.
- After Demurra shows up, Sylvia's lemonade cup permanently disappears.
- The other path to Draykor's castle is peaceful, but when the maze is viewed from above the peaceful spot isn't there.
- While Wander is pulling the door closed to Brad's request, a portion of his sock becomes the same color of his fur for a split second.
- The captions misspell Demurra's name as "Demura".
- When Wander and the others cheer for Demurra stopping Brad, the flames near the door are blue.
- Enchanted - Princess Demurra has animal friends and her appearance is slightly similar to Giselle in Enchanted. She is also similar to Giselle as both fall in love with someone from royalty and want to marry just after meeting each other, but is held back due to something bad happening, and by the climax, she discovers her true love is actually not the royalty person, but the person she spent more time with. Coincidentally, Sir Brad Starlight is voiced by Jason Marsden who portrayed and voiced Prince Edward in said movie.
- Storybook Openings - The episode begins with a book opening which is similar to how in many movies it has a book opening and closing, sometimes for Disney.
- Monty Python and the Holy Grail - Wander sings a song about Sir Brad Starlight's bravery the way the Minstrels sing about it this way.
- The Sword in the Stone - The sword is on the stone and only Wander was able to pull it out, just like Arthur is the only one to do it in the movie. Incidentally, this is also very similar to the Legend of Excalibur.
- Super Mario Bros. - The way Wander dodges the traps with no harm references how fast Mario runs in the game Super Mario Bros. Also, Princess Demurra bears a resemblance to Princess Peach.
- Bambi - One of Princess Demurra's animal friends is a deer, who bares an uncanny resemblance to the Disney character Bambi.
- Cars - When Sylvia asks Wander to keep an eye on Brad, Wander looks at him with one eye shut the same way Mater does in the movie.
- Beauty and the Beast - The plot twist involving the romance between the Dragon King and Princess Demurra is similar to Beauty and the Beast as the Dragon King is revealed to be kindhearted despite his monstrous appearance, while Brad Starlight, who is handsome and thinks he's a hero, is arrogant like Gaston, the villain of said movie.
- The Wonder Pets! - By the episode's climax, it was revealed Princess Demurra is in love with the Dragon King, similar to what happened in "Save the Unicorn" when the dragon who was chasing the Wonder Pets was actually friends with the unicorn.
- Justice Friends (Dexter's Laboratory short) - Sir Brad Starlight looks and acts similar to Major Glory from the Justice Friends (a series of shorts from Dexter's Laboratory of which Craig McCracken sometimes worked on).
- Shrek/Shrek 2 - The episode's opening uses a story book opening to explain the backstory similar to Shrek. Also, Brad Starlight is similar to Prince Charming, a character that appears heroic and is "prophesied" to save the princess only to find out that the princess is love in with a beast who is actually kind.
- Adventure Time - While Wander was singing Brad's theme song, Brad requests he put in that he fought a bear so others would know how strong he is. This is similar to the hero Billy's theme song.
- Sleeping Beauty - Draykor's hog guards resemble Maleficent's minions.
- The Amazing World of Gumball - also has an episode called 'The Hero'.
- This episode was originally scheduled for February 21, 2014, but was replaced with a Fish Hooks episode and held back. This episode aired on Disney Channel with "The Birthday Boy" on July 18, 2014.
- When this episode and The Birthday Boy aired on Disney Channel, it was apart of Disney Channel's "Frozen Summer Weekend".
- Beginning with this episode, new episodes air on Disney XD before Disney Channel.
- This episode and "The Birthday Boy" aired on Craig McCracken's 43rd birthday.
- James Marsden guest stars in this episode as Sir Brad Starlight.
- The episode was leaked 9 days prior to its air date due to its airing in France early and France having an English audio track.
- This is the first episode to air in a different country outside of the United States.
- In France, this episode was called, "Comme Dans Un Conte de Fées". (Like In An Fairy Tale). Making it the first episode in France not to begin with, "Le" (French for, "the").
- During the episode's first airings (overseas), it was paired with "The Prisoner".
- James Marsden and Jack McBrayer previously worked together on the former NBC show "30 Rock".
- This episode and The Birthday Boy only 0.4 million viewers, the lowest rated episodes, because it moved to Disney XD and most people don't have Disney XD.
- This episode and "The Birthday Boy" premiered part of Disney XD's "Show Me the Monday".
- March 10th, 2014 (Disney XD UK)
- March 21st, 2014 (Disney Channel France)
- April 18th, 2014 (Disney XD Brazil and Latin America)
- June 28th, 2014 (Disney Channel Hungary)
- July 5th, 2014 (Disney XD Poland)
- August 20th, 2014 (Disney XD Germany)
- September 7th, 2014 (Disney Channel Japan)
- September 7th, 2014 (Disney XD Canada)
- December 13, 2014 (Disney Channel Portugal)
- Jack McBrayer as Wander
- April Winchell as Sylvia, Additional Voices
- James Marsden as Sir Brad Starlight
- Jennifer Hale as Princess Demurra, Additional Voices
- Fred Tatasciore as King Draykor (credited as "Dragon King"), Additional Voices
- Additional Voices: Keith Ferguson, Tom Kenny