Follows the adventures of an extraordinarily strong young boy named Goku as he searches for the seven dragon balls. These balls, when combined, can grant the owner any one wish he desires. ... See full summary »
The adventures of Earth's martial arts defender Son Goku continue with a new family and the revelation of his alien origin. Now Goku and his allies must defend the planet from an onslaught of new extraterrestrial enemies.
The February of 2009, Toei Animation announces that as honor to 20 years of Dragon Ball Z will begin the production of a renewed DragonBall Z, named DragonBall Kai. This new anime ... See full summary »
High school student Kurosaki Ichigo is unlike any ordinary kid. Why? Because he can see ghosts. Ever since a young age, he's been able to see spirits from the afterlife. Ichigo's life ... See full summary »
Johnny Yong Bosch,
One day, 14-year-old Yusuke Urameshi suddenly finds himself dead, having died pushing a child out of the way of oncoming traffic. Since he has such a bad personality, even the Spirit World ... See full summary »
What starts off as a bizarre re-telling of the Chinese legend "Journey to the West" quickly transforms into pure madness. On a twisted version of Earth, the ridiculously strong child-fighter Son Gokû is joined by several companions in the quest for the seven "dragon balls", which, when assembled, will summon the Grand Dragon, who will grant the bearer of the balls one single wish. The problem is, the Grand Dragon can only be invoked once a year, and villains battle Gokuu and friends constantly for possession of the Dragon Balls. Written by
Mike Toole <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In Japan, Dragonball came first, then came Dragonball Z, and then came Dragonball GT. So why did Cartoon Network decide to air Dragonball Z first? The reason is this: The original Dragonball contained so many adult situations, it would have been impossible to censor; so they simply cut to the tamer Dragonball Z.
Dragonball Z turned out to be a huge success in the United States. Occasionally, the characters of Dragonball Z would refer to events from the original Dragonball; and, naturally, viewers were curious and demand to see the original series increased. This led to attempt to censor Dragonball for a kid audience (a task equally as daunting as an attempt to censor `South Park' down to a `G' rating).
The result? A highly offensive, specifically `adult' show now airs at 4:30 in the afternoon. The censors did what they could, but elements of the original adult show still remain. For example, in the Japanese version, old Master Roshi asks to see young Bulma's panties. She agrees as part of bargain, and lifts up her long shirt, only to reveal that she is not wearing anything underneath. In the English version, Roshi explains to Bulma he has a bellybutton fetish. She lifts up her shirt, and the screen is cropped so you can only see above her waistline.
Semi-censorship like this occurs throughout the series. Oolong fantasizes about harems; a girl in the fighting tournament removes her shirt to distract her opponent; Goku urinates in one episode; and every adult male character is obsessed with girly magazines. Somehow, the censors let all this slide (perhaps because the language and nudity, at least, were omitted).
Nonetheless, this show does contain some entertaining elements (the stuff that made DBZ so popular): superpowers, occasional clean humor, and some compelling characters. Although Dragonball started out badly (most of the first season is based around Roshi's obsession with girly mags), the show does get better, slowly gravitating to clean humor and interesting conflicts.
To a DBZ fan like myself, this is a great background story. If you've never seen either series before, though, DB just might scare you off (either for being bizarre or for being offensive). For that reason, I suggest watching Dragonball Z first; then watch Dragonball. You might find yourself thinking that flying cats and talking turtles are quite normal after a while...
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