|Losing 170 episodes still doesn't help this aging series||6 out of 6 users found this review helpful.|
DBZ is a series that has had a significant impact on the anime world. It took an art form that was previously concentrated in Japan and brought it out to the Western world and did so with style and crazy over the top action. It quickly became one of the most popular cartoons of the 90's. Now over a decade later the remastered, enhanced version is here to reintroduce the new generation to this series and in an attempt to stay fresh has reduced the amount of filler material and cut the episode list from 270+ episodes down to a mere 100 (with a big caveat). I had never seen the original DBZ outside of a few episodes that my friends made me watch mainly because by the time I began to watch anime the show was over & the idea of watching 270 episodes was pretty daunting. So I was very excited when this show came out. What I got was a decent shounen anime that unfortunately has not aged as well as I would have hoped.
The action in DBK is without a doubt some of the best in the business and one of the few elements of this show that has held up really well. The lack of any CGI animation at the time forced animators to hand draw every frame and this shows, as every punch and energy blast is powerful and radiates with pure testosterone. The triming of the series also did these fights a huge favor becuase they helped speed up the action and the time spent on characters powering up was kept to a minimum. The main character of Goku is also someone I really enjoyed. His easygoing nature and incredible discipline was something that I found very refreshing in a sea of steroid infused power hungry psychopaths.
Shounen anime has always been notorious for its simplistic storylines that usually features a hero on a quest who must face several challenges and is supported by his comrades. The key to making a good shonen anime therefore does not lie in its story but in its characters. If the characters are interesting and complex then the motivations for the characters, and the viewer, to continue on this journey becomes much stronger. This is where DBZ fails. It presents a simplistic story with an interesting lead but surrounds him with a cast of extremely one-dimensional characters who are not interesting enough to watch. This again may be a case of age because many shonen today have learned from the mistakes DBZ made and have tried to correct for this with some doing better than others, but DBZ just didn't give me enough enjoyment out of a fight that didn't feature Goku. Probably the most disappointing thing specific to Kai though is that the entire Majin Buu saga was removed. Why this was done is beyond me as this seemed like the most interesting arc to follow. Also the music in this series is fairly disappointing and while making a comparison with the metal soundtrack of the English dub is a weird comparison to make it is fair to do so because that music helped to enhance the mood and capture the spirit of the show better than anything else.
DBZ is a show that has largely been outclassed far and above by its successors but DBK does a great job of condensing down the show into a palatable dish and for those who haven't seen the show until now should check it out if nothing else as a good history lession. Just make sure to supplement it with the Majin Buu saga from the original to get the complete story.