Bulma

Bulma is a anime/manga character in the Dragon Ball franchise
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Bulma is a genius inventor at the Capsule Corporation and inventor of the Dragon Radar. She met Goku and together they began the journey for the Dragon Balls.

Origin

Bulma is a brilliant young woman who is the daughter of Dr. Brief, the creator of the Capsule Corporation, and she invented the Dragon Radar. With this she started her own hunt for the Dragon Balls and met Goku Son. She was the one who convinced the sheltered boy to leave his childhood home in the mountains on the quest for find all seven Dragon Balls and make a wish from the dragon Shenlong.

Creation

Early Designs of Bulma, Goku and Oolong
Early Designs of Bulma, Goku and Oolong

Bulma is one of the main characters of the original Dragon Ball series that was created by Akira Toriyama. As the Dragon Ball series takes much of it's inspiration from the ancient Chinese story, "Journey to the West". Bulma is playing the role of the character Xuanzang, the monk who was the main protagonist in the novel that traveled with the monkey king. Similar to Xuanzang, Bulma has no fighting ability and depends on her traveling companions for protection. Bulma's most noticeable character trait would be her hair color. Her hair was originally colored purple, but was later changed to a light-blue. She is the most reoccurring female character of the series.

Akira Toriyama's 2nd Draft of Goku & Bulma
Akira Toriyama's 2nd Draft of Goku & Bulma

Bulma first appeared in Dragon Ball Volume 1, Ch. 1, and her first anime appearance was in Dragon Ball - Episode 1 Bulma and Son Goku. She has been voiced by Hiromi Tsuru throughout the run of the anime in Japan, but has had several voice actresses for the release in the United States, due to the various companies that have dubbed the series in it's long run.

English Voice Actresses

Ocean Group

  • Lalainia Lindbjerg (1995 - DB Ep.1-13 / DBZ Seasons 1-2, DBZ Movies 1-3)
  • Maggie Blue O'Hara (DB Movie 1 / DBZ Seasons 4-6)
  • Jane Perry (DBZ Seasons 7-9)

Blue Water

  • Leda Davies (DB)
  • Kristin Nowosad (DBGT)

Harmony Gold

  • Wendee Lee (DB / DB Movie 3)

FUNimation Entertainment

  • Tiffany Vollmer (DB / DBZ / DBGT / Several DB Movies)
  • Leslie Alexander (DB Movie 2)
  • Monica Rail (DBZ Kai)

What Bulma lacks in any sort of strength, she makes up for in her intellect. She's the woman that all in the Dragon Ball series characters go to when then are in need of help with technology. As an inventor of the Capsule Corporation, she carries with her a variety of small hand held capsule that can be used to create incredibly large objects, such as vehicles and mobile homes. There doesn't seem to be any real limit of what can fit in these capsules for easy transportation.

Bulma name in Japanese ブルマ (buruma) is actually a take from the word "bloomer", another name for underwear. This is a theme in the names of all the children she has later on in the series.

Character Evolution

Bulma meets Goku
Bulma meets Goku

Unlike with many other manga/anime series that don't follow the characters for long stretches of their lives. The Dragon Ball story began with the cast as either children or teens and followed them through well into their adulthood. As such, Bulma has need a character who has gone through many changes in such a long series. Besides her getting older in the series and later becoming a mother. Some of the most drastic changes for Bulma has been her role in the story and the changing of her hair styles. Originally, Bulma's hair was purple in the manga but changed to a light-blue for the anime. She has a total of seventeen different hair styles and length became progressively shorter as she aged and matured. Her clothes are almost always adored with the Capsule Corp logo somewhere.

Her personality is forceful and at times vain. She loves to explore and invent, but has been known to become difficult if kept away from the conveniences of home, such as a bath and clean clothes.

Dragon Ball Era

Early Bulma Appearance
Early Bulma Appearance

When Bulma first appeared in the series, she's 16 years old and had her long hair in a ponytail, and in the story served the role as the source of many fanservice scenes. Frequently being seen naked or partially nude. She was quite confident in her own looks and tried to tempt the innocent Goku with her body. She convinces him to travel with her in search of the seven Dragon Balls. Along the journey they meet the bandit Yamcha, and she eventually starts a tenuous romantic relationship with him. He hair style changes from shoulder length and down but occasionally has her hair in a single ribbon to the side. There would eventually be a three year time skip in the series. Though Goku changes dramatically, Bulma is now 19 years old and only looks slightly older in appearance with her hair shoulder length and in bangs.

Dragon Ball Z Era

Bulma's first appearance in Dragon Ball Z Ep.2
Bulma's first appearance in Dragon Ball Z Ep.2

After the events of the first Dragon Ball series, five years has passed and most of the friends Bulma makes gathers together for a reunion. Bulma is now 24 years old with her hair dramatically shorter. It is in this series that Bulma has the most variety in hair designs. Often going from very long, to short. wavy hair styles, a perm, and a bowl cut.

Bulma with her infant son Trunks
Bulma with her infant son Trunks

Her relationship with Yamcha falls apart due to his own playboy behavior. To the surprise of many, after the Freiza Saga, Bulma marries Vegeta, the former enemy of Goku; and together they have a son named Trunks. Several more time skips occur in the Dragon Ball Z series follow to the age when her son Trunks is around 11 or 12 years old, and another to when Bulma is in her 40s. Her son Trunks is much older and she now has a teen aged daughter named Bulla, who looks similar to her mother when she was younger.

Alternate Future

During the Dragon Ball Z era, an alternate future version of Bulma was introduced. She is from the possible future of when the androids of Dr. Gero killed off many of the Z-Warriors. She is the mother of the Future Trunks, who went back in time to warn Goku about the androids attack. He used the time machine that she invented.

Dragon Ball GT Era

When the series of Dragon Ball GT begins, Bulma is in her 60s and has a short hair cut. She is still inventing and makes a space ship for Goku and the others to go into space and find all the Black Star Dragon Balls. It's learned in the final story arc of this series that it was her invention of the Dragon Radar that facilitated the overuse of the Dragon Balls and why they were corrupted.

Major Story Arcs

Bulma Meets Goku

Bulma explains what the Dragon Balls to Goku
Bulma explains what the Dragon Balls to Goku

When Bulma was 16 years old, she found the Two Star Dragon Ball in the basement of her house. Using that as a base, she developed the Dragon Radar to detect the energy signatures. When she hears the story of the Dragon Balls and how they can grant any wish. She goes out in search of all seven. the wish she wants is for a lifetime supply os Strawberries and a super-cute boyfriend. She began her search on her summer vacation and in a few weeks found the Five Star Dragon Ball in North Valley. It would be nine days later when she would reach Mount Paozu. She first met Goku whe she accidentally runs him over with her car as he's crossing the dirt road. Unharmed and angered, Goku mistakes her for a monster. He lifts up the car and throws it with her still inside. Terrified by such power. She shoots at Goku, hitting him in the head. Even more surprising to to her is that Goku rises unharmed.

Bulma tries to calm the angry boy to explain she's not some monster, but a human. She's only the second human he's ever met next to his deceased grandfather. She looks too different to him to be human, but Bulma explains that it's because she's a girl. When he learns she's a girl he tells her that her grandfather told him that if he was to ever meet a girl to be polite, but he couldn't help but ask why she didn't have a tail. At the time, Bulma didn't realize that Goku's tail was real.

Bulma fails to tempt Goku
Bulma fails to tempt Goku

Goku invited Bulma to his house, and there she found the Four Star Dragon Ball and it was glowing. He thought the ball was his grandfather since it was a gift from him. He believed the glowing meant his grandfather was trying to say something, but Bulma explained that it's glowing because it's in close proximity of other Dragon Balls. She explained to him that there were seven and went brought together could grant any wish. The last person who gathered them all became a king. Bulma tried to take Goku's but he refused. She thought he wanted something in return and offered to let him feel up her rear, but he didn't see why he should feel her "dirty butt". Instead, Bulma offered for Goku to come with her on this quest as a boyguard. He agreed but refused to let her have his grandpa until she could make her wish. Bulma was keeping it a secret that once a wish is made that the balls would then scatter across the world.

As they were leaving, she showed him the Dragon Radar and the next ball wasn't too far off. They needed a new car, so, she pulled a case from her satchel. She removed a capsule from the case, pressed a small button, and tossed it. There was a large puff of smoke and when it cleared there was a motorcycle. Goku was again convinced she was a witch. He eventually got on and they drove off to start their adventure. Along the way, Bulma stopped to pee and was abducted by a large pterodactyl that was intending on eating her. Goku used Bulma's motorcycle to give chase. He launched into the air and struck the bird down.

Other Media

Anime Alterations

The meeting of Goku and Bulma was slightly changed from the manga version. Out of fear after being thrown in her car, Bulma originally fired a gun at Goku and hit him in the head. Goku was unharmed, but was convinced she was a witch because of this. This scene with the gun was cut from the anime.

Cross Epoc

In a rare cross promotional event, the completely separate worlds of Dragon Ball and One Piece, created by Eiichiro Oda, were merged into a completely original story where character from both series were combined to make a short story in manga and later made into an anime special. The story was called Cross Epoc. In it, Bulma is friends and follow space pirate with Nami, the Straw Hat Pirates' navigator.

Anime Films

Bulma has made appearances in several of the anime film adaptations of Dragon Ball. None of these films held any place in the official continuity of the series.

Dragon Ball Era

  • Dragon Ball - Curse of the Blood Rubies (1986)
  • Dragon Ball - Sleeping Princess in Devil's Castle (1987)
  • Dragon Ball - Mystical Adventure (1988)

Dragon Ball Z Era

  • Dragon Ball Z - Dead Zone(1989)
  • Dragon Ball Z - The World's Strongest (1990)
  • Dragon Ball Z - The Tree of Might (1990)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Lord Slug (1991)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Cooler's Revenge (1991)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Return of Cooler (1992)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Super Android 13! (1992)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Broly - The Legendary Super Saiyan (1993)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Bojack Unbound (1993)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Broly - Second Coming (1994)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Bio-Broly (1994)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Fusion Reborn (1995)
  • Dragon Ball Z - Wrath of the Dragon (1995)
  • Dragon Ball Z - The Path to Power (1996)
  • Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return!! (2008)

Educational Programing

In 1998, two short films were produced as educational films for the youth in Japan. The first was titled Dragon Ball: Goku's Traffic Safety that was about teaching children proper safety around roads and traffic. The second was Dragon Ball: Goku's Fire Brigade. This one was about teaching fire safety to children. In 2004, both these films were added to the special collectors DVD box set called The Dragon Box.

Unofficial Live-Action Films

A few live action movies have been created under the title of Dragon Ball. They were produced in other countries and without the permission of the series creator or copyright holder. The first was a Korean movie named Dragon Ball: Goku Fights, Goku Win (1990). In this movie Bulma was played by the Korean actress, Lee Ju Hee. the title was called Dragon Ball - The Magic Begin (1991). She was played by the actress Jeannie Tse.

Dragonball Evolution

Emmy Rossum as Bulma in Dragonball Evolution (2009)
Emmy Rossum as Bulma in Dragonball Evolution (2009)

It was in 2009 that an officially sanctioned live-action movie was created in the U.S. The title was Dragonball Evolution. Much of the story was changed from the original concept. In this movie Bulma was played by Emmy Rossum, and was dubbed in Japanese by Aya Hirano. The movie was panned by both fans and critics. Though, despite the poor reception of the first movie. There were confirmed report of a direct sequel until word came that Hollywood was going to attempt a reboot of the movie instead.

Video Games

Bulma has had a supporting role of cameo appearance in nearly all the numerous games based on the Dragon Ball series video games, but only been playable in a small handful. More often, she's found in cinematic, in the Skill Shop of games, or is the instructor of the tutorials. She has played the host of the Data Center in the games of Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi (PS2, 2005), Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi 2 (PS2/Wii, 2006), and Dragon Ball Z Budokai Tenkaichi 3 (PS2/Wii, 2007). In the Nintendo DS game Jump Super Stars (2005). Bulma is the Help Koma. By using collector coins, she rewards the Battle Koma she is attached to with extra SP.

Bulma in Dragon Ball: Origins
Bulma in Dragon Ball: Origins

Bulma made her first playable appearance in video games on the Nintendo DS game Dragon Ball: Origins (2008) and in the later Dragon Ball: Origins 2 (2010) Bulma is a playable fighter in the PSP game based on the live-action movie Dragonball Evolution (2009).

Voiced by
Rank Game #1281 in Power Rank
General Information Edit
Name: Bulma
Name: ブルマ
Romanji: Buruma
Gender: Female
Birthday:
1st manga book: Dragon Ball #1
1st anime episode: Dragon Ball #1
1st anime movie: Dragon Ball: Curse of the Blood Rubies
Aliases Bulma Brief
Bloomers
Lena
Nora
Jito
Y-Tou
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