When Sara originally sent the track out to her sister and producer Greg Kurstin, it was much more acoustic and very slow. Tegan told Under The Radar
: "I was haunted by it almost immediately. I found the verses to be quintessential Sara. The line about standing in the shadow of a damaged heart, I was just like, 'Are you fu--ing kidding me?' She's so good. She has this way of creating this devastating imagery.
In the past, where it was a love song, 'I'm Not Your Hero' is much more about feeling alienated and lost and lonely amongst your peers," she continued. "There have been times especially in the last few years where Sara and I, but mainly Sara, have felt very alone. Not only because we're so political and so outspoken, but also because we can fit into a lot of different places. Specifically, we've been embraced and accepted in a lot of mainstream ways, and sometimes I think that makes us feel alienated from our gay community or the indie rock community. So, I think it's a really powerful song about feeling alienated amongst your people."