Dragon Ball Z….man what an ANIME!!! It is my favorite anime of all time and one of the main reasons why I love the art of anime of so much. It’a an anime that redefined the genre in my opinion. I grew up watching Dragon Ball Z a lot as a kid. I remember watching it a lot back when it aired on Toonami back in the late 90’s and early 00’s. Even though the anime came out back in the late 80’s, I wasn’t born at the time but thankfully I was able to watch this mind blowing show several years later. I did not see every single episode but I did remember a lot of the major characters in the show. I remember playing the video games and wanting to buy the action figures after seeing several of the episodes. There were a few English Dubs at the time for Dragon Ball Z, and the one that I grew up with is the Ocean Dub version. After that, I mostly grew up with the Funimation Dub version. After I finished Dragon Ball completely around 2017, I started to re watch Dragon Ball Z right after. I was able to complete the entire series one year later around December of 2018.
Well to start off, the main great thing about Dragon Ball Z is the entire story line from season 1 to season 9 and the epic fights. Yes you heard that right, I said fights. Whenever an anime fan hears about Dragon Ball Z, they right away think about the fights/showdowns that happened in the show. Hands down, the fights are one of the main reasons why the show is mostly known for its greatness. The storyline is also about finding all the Dragon Balls and making a wish to the eternal Dragon named Shenron but the stakes are more higher and more personal and interesting. The show kicks off with a bang with the Saiyan Saga when it is revealed that Goku has a brother named Raditiz in which he came to recruit him and help him destroy and conquer Earth since they are Saiyans. After several episodes later, it is revealed that two other Saiyans named Vegeta and Nappa also plan to come to Earth eventually and the saga has its first iconic and memorable battle between Vegeta and Goku in its season finale. There is one line said by Vegeta that became an instant classic which later turned into one of the best anime lines in history. That line is
Vegeta: “It’s OVER 9000!!!”.
For those who don’t know, he was referring to Goku’s power level when they first meet each other. While this saga is definitely an enjoyable one, it is not my favorite saga though.
The second saga is solid as well as Goku’s son named Gohan, Krillin, and Bulma go to the planet Namek to retrieve the original set of Dragon Balls so they can revive the ones that died from the battle caused by Vegeta and Nappa back in the Saiyan Saga. They later find out that there is someone stronger than Vegeta and he is looking to get all the dragon balls for himself to achieve immortality. That character is named Frieza and he is my favorite Dragon Ball Z villain. Frieza was the main villain everyone in my friend circle talked about when I was a kid. We were so mesmerized of how powerful he was and we used to choose him a lot in the video games to play as in Dragon Ball Z Budokai and Budokai 3 for the PlayStation 2. When I was watching this again in 2017 and I heard Frieza’s name being mentioned, I got so ecstatic and started to binge watch episodes like crazy! This eventually kicks off the Frieza saga which is the third season.
The Frieza saga is my favorite saga because it has the iconic fight between Goku and Frieza which is considered the longest fight in the entire series! Many anime fan’s favorite iconic moment is where Goku transforms into the very first Super Saiyan for the first time against Frieza. That moment was so special and it was like a love letter to all anime fans. We all lost our minds as a kid when we saw Goku and Vegeta turned Super Saiyan in many episodes. I used to have a Vegeta action figure of him in his first Super Saiyan form.
The Trunks Saga was very enjoyable as well since we are introduced to the character named Trunks after he time travels from the future. He is considered the future son of Vegeta and Bulma and warns Goku and his gang that two Androids will eventually come and wreck havoc. This is their motive since they want to seek revenge against Goku for destroying the Red Ribbon Army back in the Dragon Ball series. I thought that was a really interesting and cool that Goku’s consequences for destroying the Red Ribbon Army back at Dragon Ball would be in effect in Dragon Ball Z. The Cell Games Saga is actually another favorite saga of mine because it introduces my second favorite villain and that is Cell. As a kid, me and my friends loved talking about Cell as a kid since we all thought he was badass since he has a “perfect form”. He hosts a tournament called the Cell games and it’s really iconic because Gohan gets his moment to shine when he goes against Cell. Gohan goes into the second level of Super Saiyan to defeat Cell which was mind blowing to see at the time.
The seventh season is probably my least favorite saga but that does not mean it’s a bad season. In the seventh season, you see Gohan all grown up and a few other allies a little bit grown up as well. It is also revealed that Goku has another son named Goten which was really cool. Another World Martial Arts Tournament is hosted and that leads to the final two sagas right after which is the Babidi and Majin Buu Sagas. Majin Buu is another Dragon Ball Z villain but he was never one of my favorites. He is a powerful villain but to me I just wouldn’t put him in my favorites’ list. However the Majin Buu saga is another favorite saga of mine because that is the season where Goku turns Super Saiyan 3. Watching Goku turning Super Saiyan 3 as a kid made me lose my mind and go ecstatic. Even when re-watching the show back at 2017-2018, I was so pumped and happy. The two great things about that moment of Goku turning Super Saiyan 3 for the first time was the music and what he said before turning Super Saiyan 3. The Dragon Ball Z music for the Funimation dub was composed by Bruce Faulconer and the Super Saiyan 3 theme he composed is beyond epic. It’s so good that I have it in iPhone music library. The other great thing about that moment was Goku saying this:
Goku: “You’re going to love this, trust me.”.
He was not talking to Babidi or Majin Buu when he said that, He was talking to the audience actually and that was really mind blowing and so cool.
There are many great themes Bruce Faulconer produced throughout the show but my second favorite is the Mystic Gohan theme as it played when it was time for Gohan in his ultimate form to face Majin Buu (Super Buu). It’s such a really cool theme and I also have that theme in my iPhone music library. There was this dialogue between Super Buu and Gohan and it went like this:
Buu: ” So Hotshot You Want to Fight Majin Buu?”
Gohan: ” Fight you? No I wanna kill you.”
It was such a badass line and I love it so much! Gohan became one of the beloved characters in Dragon Ball Z because he started off as a little kid to an 18 year old adult that was very strong. If you watch the show from start to finish, you feel like you grew up along with him throughout all nine sagas which is really amazing. The fight between Goku and Majin/Kid Buu is definitely in my top five favorite fights in the show,
Any negative things to say about Dragon Ball Z or even a nitpick would be considered a travesty in my opinion hahahaha!
Overall, Dragon Ball Z is a definite masterpiece and it’s an anime that is still talked about in today’s world and it had a great impact on so many fans around the globe. Many people’s first anime was Dragon Ball Z and that lead them to check out other anime as well which gave the genre a chance to shine in all ways possible. If you have not seen Dragon Ball Z, then I would highly recommend it. You will not be disappointed. If you want the full experience, then I suggest watching Dragon Ball first. It is no doubt I am giving Dragon Ball Z five out of five stars. Stay tuned for my next review which is the true sequel to Dragon Ball Z and that is Dragon Ball Super. 🙂