Manga Review: Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two collects the fourth, fifth, and sixth volumes of the manga that chronicle the story of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the franchise.

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume Two
Written by: Akira Toriyama
Publisher: Shueisha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: August 19, 2008

This volume continues where the first volume left off, which was during the battle between Goku and Vegeta. In fact, the entirety of the fourth volume of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the story is focused on this battle, which makes up 177 pages of this release. We then see what happens in the aftermath of this battle, and the decision to go to Planet Namek to acquire the Namekian Dragon Balls.

The story then shifts to Bulma, Kuririn, and Gohan going to Planet Namek. Unfortunately, getting the Namekian Dragon Balls isn’t easy, because both Vegeta and new villain Freeza both want the Dragon Balls for themselves so they can wish for immortality. But Freeza isn’t alone… he has powerful henchmen by his side. Goku also decides to set out for Planet Namek after he recovers and using his time in the spaceship to train so he can become even stronger.

For readers who have watched the anime, they already know how long of an arc there is going into the Planet Namek portion of the story. Yes, the anime did add in some filler, but the portion of this arc that appears in this volume isn’t bogged down by filler in the anime. When an anime viewer reaches the end of this volume and realize how much there still is to go for this portion of the story, they know it’s going to have to cover at least one more of the VIZBig omnibus volumes.

Obviously, the Vegeta and Goku fight at the beginning of this volume is one of the highlights. Near the end of the volume, a battle between Vegeta and Zarbon (one of Freeza’s henchmen) gets underway but doesn’t quite finish. Outside of these two big battles, there are some action sequences, but they’re nowhere near as intense as the two battles that bookend the volume. Probably the closest to these two would be the attack that Freeza and his henchmen launch on a Namekian village in order to obtain its Dragon Ball.

I would recommend the manga to readers who are only familiar with the story from the Dragon Ball Z anime, because it allows them to see just how much the anime was stretched out by “filler” and slowing the pacing down. While watching Dragon Ball Z Kai can also help with this, I think it’s better to go to the original source material and see how the author intended the story to be told.

Manga Review: Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume One

Dragon Ball Z VIZBig Volume One collects the first three volumes of the manga that chronicle the story of the Dragon Ball Z portion of the franchise.

Dragon Ball Z VIZBIG Volume One
Written by: Akira Toriyama
Publisher: Shueisha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: June 3, 2008

This volume begins with the arrival of an alien named Raditz, and he’s looking for his brother, Kakarrot. He tracks down his brother, who turns out to be Goku, at Roshi’s place. Also introduced early on in this volume is Gohan, Goku’s young son. Yes, it turns out Goku had a tail in the first series because he wasn’t an Earthling… he’s from a race known as the Saiyans. When Goku refuses to go with Raditz, his older brother defeats him and kidnaps Gohan.

For those who are familiar with the Dragon Ball Z franchise know that this is the beginning of this portion of this franchise. The story continues in this volume with the death of Goku, Gohan displaying that he has latent powers that he’s unaware of, and Piccolo training Gohan. Goku may be dead, but he’s training in the afterworld with Kaio-sama. Goku, Gohan, and the other Z-Fighters are preparing for the arrival of two other Saiyans who will come in one year.

This three-in-one also gets to the arrival of Vegeta and Nappa, the two Saiyans, and the various fights they have with the Z-Fighters. We even see Goku return from the afterworld to start battling the Saiyans. This omnibus volume ends in the middle of Goku’s battle with Vegeta.

Since I saw the anime well before I ever began reading the manga, I was pleasantly surprised by how much quicker the story progresses in this omnibus edition. It really made it clear just how much filler was included, as well as how much some of the scenes were stretched out, in the anime adaptation of this first arc of Dragon Ball Z. As I recall from seeing the early episodes of Dragon Ball Z Kai, the remake anime follows the manga much more closely, so has a similar pacing to what you see when you read these first three volumes of the series.

The manga telling of this story, especially when you look at this omnibus volume, has a good mixture of character building, dialogue, and action that keeps the reader wanting to read more in order to find out what happens next. Even though I was already familiar with the story from watching the anime, I still found myself engrossed while reading this first omnibus edition of Dragon Ball Z. And the deaths of certain characters hit me just as hard as they did when I first saw this story when watching the anime for the first time a little over a decade ago. Oh, and I can’t neglect to mention just how cute and little Gohan was in this early arc of the series.

This omnibus release is worth it for fans of Dragon Ball Z that want to own the manga but don’t want to spend the time or money to chase down the original individual volumes of the series.

FUNimation Entertainment Responds to Reports of Green Tint on Dragon Ball Super: Broly Film’s Blu-ray Disc

Anime News Network is reporting that FUNimation Entertainment has responded to fan reports that its Blu-ray Disc release of the Dragon Ball Super: Broly film has a green tint.

The company’s response:

Funimation’s home entertainment release of “Dragon Ball Super: Broly” utilized the same master as the U.S. & Canadian movie release. It is identical to what audiences watched in North American theaters earlier this year.

FUNimation released the film on Blu-ray Disc, DVD, and Digital combo pack on April 16, 2019. Shortly after the release, fans began reporting online that the release has an apparent green tint.

Source: ANN

FUNimation Entertainment’s 30th Anniversary Dragon Ball Z Blu-ray Collector’s Edition Set Reaches 3,000 Pre-Order Goal

FUNimation Entertainment stated at its panel at Anime Boston that it has reached the 3,000 pre-orders necessary to produce the 30th anniversary Dragon Ball Z Blu-ray Disc collector’s edition set. The company added that it will produce 6,000 copies of the set. The official website for the set lists that there are 2,813 copies remaining as of Saturday evening, and pre-orders are available until May 5, 2019.

The company announced the set in March 2019, stating it needed 2,500 units pre-ordered in order to produce the set. The company later added that the original 2,500 number was a mistake, and 3,000 pre-orders would be needed. FUNimation began taking pre-orders for the set on April 6, 2019.

The set includes: 37 Blu-ray Discs featuring Dragon Ball Z in 4:3 aspect ratio, an 11-inch Goku Grandista figure by Banpresto, a hardcover artbook, a certificate of authenticity, and a box for the set. The set will also feature new bonus content.

Source: ANN

FUNimation Entertainment Lists Dragon Ball Super: Broly Film’s Blu-ray Disc/DVD for April 16, 2019

FUNimation Entertainment and Best Buy are listing an April 16, 2019 release date for a Blu-ray Disc, DVD, and Digital combo pack for the Dragon Ball Super: Broly film.

Best Buy will exclusively offer the film in a SteelBook case edition. FUNimation will offer a Goku standee as a gift with purchase. Anime retailer Right Stuf is not yet listing a release date, but it will offer a Vegeta standee as a gift with purchase.

The film opened in Japan on December 14, 2018, and FUNimation premiered the film’s English dub at the TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood on December 13, 2018. FUNimation then began screening the film in theaters in the United States and Canada on January 16, 2019. As of February 3, 2019, the film has earned more than US$100 million worldwide, and is the highest-earning film in the franchise.

Source: ANN

List: My Favorite Characters From the Dragon Ball Franchise

This time, I’m looking at my five favorite characters from the Dragon Ball franchise. As usual, though, this is not a Top 5 list. Instead, my choices are being presented in alphabetical order.

Bulma

Bulma is among the longest-running characters in the franchise, and she changes and evolves so much. While some of her behavior changes, one thing about her doesn’t: the fact that she’s an intelligent woman and is the one coming up with the technology and gadgets that the Z Fighters use during their adventures. Even though Dragon Ball is a shonen franchise, it’s always struck me from the first time I watched an episode of the series that a female was allowed to be intelligent. Sure, she’s also there for the sex appeal, but the intelligence is one of her most defining character traits.

When Bulma first appears in the Dragon Ball franchise, she’s still young. She was a boy crazy and slightly bossy high school student in the first series. In the beginning of Dragon Ball Z, Bulma is a young woman who has unfortunately evolved from being a boy crazy kid into a screechy young woman. But after becoming a mother later in Dragon Ball Z, Bulma seems to find a balance when it comes to her emotions. The maturity she gains later in the series helps to make up for some of her obnoxious behavior earlier on in the franchise.

Goku

How could Goku not make this list? He is the protagonist, after all!

Goku, of course, goes through so much evolution from the time we meet him at the beginning of Dragon Ball. He starts out as young and naïve, but he’s strong for a little guy. Through meeting Bulma, he learns how to interact with other people. And with the help of Master Roshi, young Goku learns how to hone his natural abilities. Even with all of his physical strength, Goku has a kind heart and cares about his friends.

In Dragon Ball Z, we see Goku evolve into a husband and father, although he seems to do a little better in the father role than the husband role (although maybe not by much). He learns that he’s from an alien race, but Goku remains the same person he’s always been since the start of the series. And even though Goku gets stronger and powers up through training, he’s considerate enough to make sure he and any opponent he fights are as far away from cities and other places where people are gathered in order to avoid accidentally killing or harming anyone not directly involved in a battle.

And who can forget Goku’s cluelessness and hefty appetite? LOL.

Kuririn (aka Krillin)

When we first meet Kuririn (aka Krillin) in Dragon Ball, he’s young and cocky. But as he gets to know Goku and comes to realize just how much stronger the other is, Kuririn’s cockiness diminishes. He becomes Goku’s best friend and loyal companion.

But after being knocked down a few pegs, Kuririn becomes timid, especially when he faces off against extremely strong adversaries. Kuririn has a good heart, and like Goku, is loyal to his friends. He also develops a kind of support role for Goku’s son, Gohan.

While Kuririn may not be as strong as most of the characters in the Dragon Ball franchise, he’s still an endearing character to the audience.

Trunks

We first meet Trunks when “Future Trunks” comes from the future to help out Goku and the other Z Fighters. Right from his introduction, we could see that he had badass sword abilities. But beyond that, he seems to possess some of the best traits of both of his parents. He has strength, but he also possesses smarts.

While I also do like young Trunks, I admit that I prefer “Future Trunks.” Seeing young Trunks’ adventures lets the audience see how he will ultimately become like Future Trunks, but young Trunks just isn’t quite as cool as his future self.

Vegeta

While Vegeta is the anti-hero, he goes through quite the evolution to become one of the “good guys.” When the audience first meets Vegeta, he’s one of the ruthless Saiyan villains in Dragon Ball Z who comes to take over the Earth. At first, after being defeated by Goku, he’s still a villain… but he doesn’t seem to be quite as ruthless as when he was first introduced. As time goes on and Vegeta gets to know Bulma, we see Vegeta evolving more and more into an anti-hero. He’s not purposefully doing it, of course, but it’s something that evolves over time.

While Vegeta may never be quite be as chummy with the other Z Fighters as Goku, he still has a charm about him that helps him to kind of fit in with the group. And with his infamous scene in the Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods anime film, you can see just how much he’s changed as a character from when he was first introduced in the franchise.

Oh, and as a bonus… we can’t forget how Vegeta rocked a pink shirt.

Dragon Ball Super: Broly Film Earns US$100 Million Worldwide

The Mainichi Shimbun newspaper’s Mantan Web site has reported that the Dragon Ball Super: Broly anime film has earned a combined worldwide total of US$100 million as of February 3, 2019.

The film has sold 3,009,730 tickets and earned 3,895,569,200 yen (about US$35.43 million) in Japan alone. The film has thus sold more tickets and earned more than the previous Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ film, and is now the highest-earning film in the franchise.

The film has sold an estimated 3,222,700 tickets for US$29,101,069 in the United States and Canada from January 16-31, 2019. The film is still screening in theaters.

The film opened in Japan on December 14, 2018, and it sold more than 820,000 tickets and earned more than 1,050,000,000 yen (about US$9.26 million) in its first three days in Japan, topping the box office in its first weekend. Toei stated that it anticipates the film will eventually earn more than 5 billion yen (about US$44 million).

Source: ANN