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DRAGON BALL's Embarrassing Early Days?

#12 -- Retro Review. The monkey's even scarier!

The life of the DRAGON BALL is really starting to look like - - I don’t know - - a soft rock act who spent their younger, wilder years as a punk band. Like, they’ve got this profitable, family-friendly image now, and they’re utterly embarrassed by all the lewd things they used to spout off on their early records.

I mean, I always assumed that Shen Long’s first appearance would’ve come after somebody died and needed resurrecting. The Z-Fighters eventually did that so often that, by the time they got around to the Saiyan Saga, they basically just started shrugging off anybody’s death. “Oh hey -- that’s really horrible that Yamcha got killed. Don’t sweat it, though, we can just gather the Dragon Balls and wish him back.” They even took it so far beyond that point of exhaustion that Shen Long would even flat-out tell them that all the wishes were used up.

BOTTOM LINE: I had no idea that the first wish in this epic would be used to gift a pair of panties to Oolong. That’s like a twist of the HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY. All these questing characters go through all this trouble, chasing after this boon, and by the end, it’s wasted on something incredibly stupid. That’s brilliant.

Conversely, the revelation of Goku’s ‘Kong-turn’ is more in line with what I expected. It makes Gohan’s transformations during the Saiyan Saga seem more natural to the mythos, obviously. However, watching it with the foreknowledge of what’s to come does underline the whole scene with even more menace. Oolong wonders if Goku might actually be an alien. It’s clear that the little tyke was just so powerful as a Saiyan baby that he accidentally murdered his grandfather, and so on. There’s even a dangerous significance to the monkey tail, now (which won’t be paid off until Raditz shows up in a few hundred episodes, natch).

For a show about poop and panty jokes, there’s actually a lot to wrap your mind around…

Watch "A Wish to the Eternal Dragon" and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode.

Lurkeroon July 29, 2014 at 5:39 p.m.

I liked the scene with Shen Long only because it made sure viewers knew not to take anything in Dragonball seriously.

zaldaron July 30, 2014 at 5:06 a.m.

Just the early days are emberresting...? /end troll

Kino88on July 31, 2014 at 5:59 p.m.
Funny thing is, even in its later years Dragonball Was always pretty silly, even when it became all "epic" the zany factor never really went away, and indeed, why should it, :)

Dig Deeper into Dragon Ball

Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball franchise is about the adventures of Goku and his friends from his early childhood to his death and beyond. It begins with a young Saiyan boy named Goku after falling of a cliff and losing his memory, and leads on to an adventure of a lifetime!

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