Dragon Ball (TV Series 1995–2003) Poster


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A classic!
alj0057 July 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Dragon Ball... what can i say about this great show...? Is there really someone in the world who hasn't seen or heard about dragon ball..?

This show is about the humorous adventures of a boy named Goku, who goes on a journey with a young girl named Bulma in the look for the 7 Dragon Balls.

This show is simply a classic.! It's very creative, it has lots of action and great characters, and the animation is great for the time it was made.

The show starts as kind of a comedy with martial arts but as the adventure goes on it turns into a more serious thing. During Goku's journey he meets with all kinds of characters, and i really mean it ALL KINDS. Dragon Ball is that kind of show where everything can just happen.!

Dragon Ball also has a great martial arts concept, the characters strength grow up as they train and fight, and they get all kind of techniques and abilities that make them even stronger.

The adventure goes from the race after the dragon balls against a little blue guy, to some fantastic martial arts tournaments, and it has also some legendary villains, it simply has everything.! If you haven't seen this great show -if that's even possible- don't waste time.! download it, watch it on toonami, buy it, do as you can but watch it.! you won't be disappointed this show is really a classic.!
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One Hell of a show!
halobluecat15 December 2008
I have to say that Dragonball is by far my Favorite series of all time. Its the show that got me into anime and I cant wait to buy all the seasons remastered when they come out.

The Dragonball story is goofy, fun, and all around brilliant! It throws great humor with huge action and you cant beat it. I started Dragonball by reading the manga when I was younger and still love them and the show is just as good if not better! Sure, some stuff form the manga has been taken out of the show but thats because some of that is more mature(nudity) then would be for the audience.

All in all, Dragonball is one show you need to see in it entirety to feel its greatness. I recommend it to everyone because its that good and every age can enjoy it. From the silly monkey boy to the perverted Turtle Hermit, its all out fun.

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So Much Better than Z, & Yet No Love
klv178 January 2009
There are no fights with people staring at each other for an entire episode, & 10 minutes turns into half of a saga as in the last half of the Frieza series. nor are there any ridiculous power levels.. No huge inaccuracies in the plot-lines, & lame filler that has you scratching your head.

Since when was Mercenary Tao a General? Since when did Dr. Gero lead the red ribbon army? He didn't.. It was Commander Red. Goku never met Dr.Gero, because he never existed.

I think the whole power level thing is great for video games, but makes for a "yaaawn" of a series.

Dragonball is actually believable, but fantastical all at once. You are never sitting & waiting & waiting for what you know is going to happen, because you simply don't know.

Always new characters, adventures, & twists in the stories that actually make for a fun series. Awesome humor, & magical places. Tests of strength & purity of character, & friendships built on realistic type events.

You see how Goku wins over the most evil of hearts & minds, From Yamacha, to Tien to Piccolo. All the characters are involved & help to solve the crisis at hand.

Do yourself a big favor if you're a fan of Goku & the crew, & make sure you watch this series from the very beginning. Don't just pick it up in the middle from seeing one episode & say yuck!!!

I did exactly that. Then when i saw how god-awful GT was, I decided to start here instead. Was well worth it. It really is so much better than Z hands down..
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One of the best shows on TV
chaching25910 January 2010
I just finished watching this series, and I have to say this is one of the best shows on television.

Dragon Ball is considered a prequel of the more famous Dragon Ball Z, but I have to say that after watching it, Dragon Ball stands as a legitimate show on its own. It is a much better counterpart to DBZ than GT is. It may seem a bit childish at the beginning, but the show matures as the characters do as well. The show is funny too.

Compared with Z, Dragon Ball is more about the basics of fighting while Z harnesses advanced techniques. Overall I would say the fighting in Dragon Ball is actually better than Z while the plot in Z is better than Dragon Ball (though this is not to say that either are bad in anyway)

I highly recommend watching it and see the excitement of Goku's journey.

Take a look!
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The series that simplifies and introduces anime.
jonjosejamora8 February 2007
Dragon ball is the cartoon that pioneered the fame that anime enjoys today. "What FF7 did for Rpg's, DB does for anime". It showcases wacky characters that each develop over time. It is definitely for kids but, considering Japanese culture, some actions(e.g. young Goku touching/smelling "genitalia") may seem vulgar but of course in a comedic and innocent manner. This is as well, slapstick humor.... not in its finest... BUT IN ITS EXTREME FORM! (e.g. One of Goku's enemies, Ninja Murasaki, falls from the roof. Then.... the "poor" ninja lands ass-first on Goku's stretch stick, protruding from the ground. Talk about the worst anal probe ever! Thats how the guy loses. Hahahaha....)

The plot is built around an odd little boy that that is blessed with great strength and physical prowess. The general formula of the series is one of a "Boss saga" type. What i mean by this is that each "chapter" always begins with a new enemy boss introduced while it ends with the protagonist defeating that boss. Later on, in the series (DBZ), the origins of Goku is revealed. Dragon ball is centered on how Goku attains super hero status. By the latter parts of Dragon ball, Goku actually "grows up". A trademark as well of the show is the many memorable characters that it has. What is memorable?? This is simply: Ulong (the shape-shifting pig), Yamcha (the outcast that fights using his "Wolf fang fist"), Bulma (the main focus of "fan service"), Goku (the monkey boy), Lange (the schizophrenic sneezing babe).....

This is actually a good example of what anime generally is. All the peculiar humor that Japanese cartoons portray are nicely shown. From the sexual overtones, slapstick, stupidity, childishness, super deformed "chibi" and what not considering Jap-humor. Don't forget that this is a kiddie show. It is enjoyable though even for adults as the "oddities" (goku's old master, the ultimate "hentai" "perv" Tortoise Genie, in his eternal pursuit for sexy women.) are enough to keep you laughing.
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Amazing anime!
fingers40920038 June 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Well I just have to say this is at least one of the best anime I've ever seen. I still like DBZ and DBGT but not as near as much as Dragon Ball. First of all all, the characters in this series are not godlike, like in DBZ and DBGT. It's not quite as readiculus as the others. The characters actually have real problems besides just fighting another guy from outer space. They try to actually find the dragonballs. They show the Tournaments a lot more often. It was more magical and involved spirits, and now they mostly feature science fiction instead. Dragon Ball doesn't have a billion transformations like the others. They even fought armies of brutal fighters as well instead of just fighting a few guys. And last but not least, every character is useful. Even Yajerobe and Tien! All of the characters power levels are more closer to each other, but now one of them is way farther than the other, making the other character almost useless.

For example, Goku far surpasses the other fighters with ease because of his Super Saiyan Transformations making other weaker fighters like Tien and Yamcha almost useless. It makes you think" Hey if they don't fight, why are they even there? It's almost pointless. And even though Dragon Ball doesn't quite have as much action as DBZ or DBGT, it still surpassess it with it's realistic problems, the other fighters being useful and even humor! It also doesn't quite have as much violence or cussing, but it sures have a lot more nudity, and more girl nudity, too, intead of just seeing Goku and Gohan's butt. I hope more people check out this anime and not be a jerk, by seeing a few episodes and immediately assumming it's not good. I don't see how this could be hated by a couple of others. I really don't. Guess they don't have a sense of humor.
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The best anime for kids!
ShotaroShima23 February 2005
Young Goku is here. Lovable, kind, and pure-hearted. Also discover the origin of how it all started. To be honest, this was the best anime cartoon I ever saw next to my other favorites, Akira and Galerians.They don't compare at all but its funny and perfect for the family. If you heard DBZ was good, watch this series. The best shows are the first two sagas, when Goku did the most comedy. Although this isn't REALLY recommend for kids, due to violence and nudity. I recommend this to ages 9 and up. Young Goku journeys with a girl named Bulma hoping to find the seven dragon balls. During there journey they run into enemies who also have the same objective. Will Goku and Bulma receive all of the dragon ball and summon the dragon or will there plan be a failure. The whole search rides on a dragon radar created by Bulma.
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Find the Dragon Balls!
QprP7wuvk9 September 2001
What starts off as an unusual re-telling of a Chinese legend called "Journey to the West" immediately turns into into pure madness!! On a twisted version of earth, the amazingly strong child named Son Gokuu goes on a quest to find the magical dragon balls with his friends Bulma and Oolong. Once all 7 dragon balls are gathered and the dragon is called, the sky will darken and the dragon will grant any one wish within its power. Unfortunately, only one wish can be granted per year and after the wish is granted, the dragon balls scatter across the earth and turn into stones. Within 365 days, they will once again become magical dragon balls. Dragon Ball is the funniest anime I have ever seen. From Master Roshi and Oolong's hentai "problems" to Gokuu trying a Kamehameha for the very first time!
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Very good start for one of the best series ever
vittoriobaky29 November 2007
When the 1st episode of Dragon Ball kicks in, no one would even imagine where this is going to lead. That single episode led to near 500 episodes divided into 3 series, about 20 OAVs, real-life movies (one of them still being produced), hella-long mangas, mass hysteria when it ended, fan fictions all around, rumors about a new series that never arrived, several videogames and gadgets... did I forget something? Probably. Dragon Ball is what brought animes outside of Japan to the mainstream. And it did deservedly, as Dragon Ball, as a whole, is one of the best series ever made.

But let's focus on Dragon Ball, the famous prequel to the even more known Dragon Ball Z. Forget the extreme sci-fi from Z. Forget the huge muscles (well, do not, just imagine them smaller), put in loads of humor, and you get Dragon Ball, the first series. The story is funny, but smart and thrilling, and despite the obvious ending of all the parts, there's still some thrill to be had - mostly with the typical superhero scene where you wonder "How will they get out of this?" even if you know for sure they WILL get out of that. The characters are hilarious, but given the impressive amount of them, you'd better not start loving too many of them, because there could pass dozens of episodes without seeing certain people. This is quite a flaw in the Dragon Ball formula, in fact the power levels of the characters raise so fast that someone who appears to be the strongest person on the world, will be beaten by half of the cast about 50 episodes later.

The drawing style is very typical and good, although sometimes it's a little flawed - nothing bad though. Another flaw is that some sagas inside the story are quite boring - the last episodes are quite a filler that do not inflict the later storyline in any way, so it could have been avoided, and cut at the last fight. Otherwise, Dragon Ball all things considered is epic. You might watch it today and think "What's the fuss all about?" - you might not get it with today's eyes. But believe me, this thing was huge, and I could re-watch it anytime. And it leads to Dragon Ball Z, which is one of the best TV-shows ever made.
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A More Simple Series Without Super Saiyans
byson518630 December 2014
First off, I'm surprised there aren't many reviews or messages for DragonBall. This is the first review in 2 years. Now, to talk about the DragonBall franchise, clearly it has been a successful franchise worldwide. However, when we think about the franchise, most of us think about DragonBall Z. I even prefer DragonBall Z over DragonBall, and both of them are a lot better than DragonBall GT. Let's face it, Toriyama is the only one who can write the DragonBall series, they can have filler like they do throughout the series with even good sagas like the Garlic Jr. Saga, but if somebody else tries to come up with their own stories, it will fail.

As we know, DragonBall Z came out in America before DragonBall even though DragonBall is the earlier series, and again it seems like Z is more popular. From what I heard, the reason the companies started with Z in America before DragonBall is because they thought DragonBall Z would attract more viewers, which it probably did. Even in DragonBall Z, sometimes they show earlier scenes from DragonBall, and talked about what happened earlier, enough where you don't need to watch the earlier series to get the latter series. DragonBall didn't come on TV in America, on Toonami until 2001. The company also didn't do as good of a job editing the episodes, I mean in Z they have totally different music from Bruce Faulconer. In this series, the main difference is just the dub.

Now, when we think of the DragonBall series, one of the first things that comes to our mind is a Super Saiyan. Super Saiyans are big from the Frieza Saga on. In DragonBall, there are no Super Saiyans. We see Goku with his tail and transform into a Great Ape a couple of times. The Saiyan tails and Great Apes almost seemed forgotten in DragonBall Z after the Saiyan Saga. Also, considering we don't know what a Saiyan is yet we also don't get to know one of the main characters through the rest of the series, Vegeta. He isn't in DragonBall. Despite not getting to know one of our favorite characters Vegeta, or even any other Saiyan or Half-Saiyan, as Half-Saiyans weren't born in DragonBall, we get to know Goku as a kid. We also get to know most of the human characters we know in DragonBall Z, and they play a bigger role in the series. As we know, that how in a lot of DragonBall Z, only the Saiyans stood a chance against the villains.

What else differs in this series, well the series is called DragonBall, and the latter series is DragonBall Z. When we think of the series, we mostly think about the action even when it is called DragonBall. In this earlier series, they seem to show more of their hunting for DragonBalls, which can make it more adventurous. So, that makes it more fun. They also seem to have more World Martial Arts Tournaments, as those weren't big in DragonBall Z until the Majin Buu Saga. We have interesting World Martial Arts Matches where Master Roshi, who is almost of no use in DragonBall Z is Jackie Chun and one of the top competitors. We also don't get to know Mr. Satan who was the main World Martial Arts Competitor in Z.

The fighting in this series is also more simple, because in DragonBall Z even when their power levels kept getting higher, the fighting mostly seemed the same where it would be really fast that normal people couldn't see. Where the fighting and power would shake the entire planet. Characters powering up screaming to their fullest power by going Super Saiyan and killing them with an energy attack known as Ki. Power Level is hardly mentioned in DragonBall. Also, in DragonBall it seems like the villains want World Domination, in Z they want universal domination, so in terms of fighting a more simple series.

If you're at all a fan of DragonBall Z, then this series is for you. It will be almost as enjoyable, if not more enjoyable than DragonBall Z. I don't know see how you could not like it, and it's nice to see the continuous storyline and the earlier parts when Goku and Krillin were cute kids. I give this series a 10/10.
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Watch the YTV version, or the edited Toonami version
imanhassan-5388930 April 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Dragon ball is a great japanese cartoon for children 7 and up, however there are several english dubs due to licensing and lack of popularity compared to its sequel dragon ball z. there is an edited Canadian dub (aka, blue water dub) that aired on ytv in the early 2000s, and alternate Funimation dub that used to air on cartoon network at the same time. the toonami dub was then released on home video, uncut. and that's where the problem starts. in the uncut version, you constantly see goku naked or other kinds of nudity, as well as perverted inapporpriate jokes from the characters, particularity coming from goku's teacher, master roshi. these jokes are unaccpetable for a PG rated show, and was never shown on YTV. If you are a child, or if a parent looking for this show, i highly reccommend you watch the edited version. it keeps all the actions, and removes dirty jokes.

despite that, dragon ball is an awesome show, that stars goku when he was just a kid, searching for dragon balls while going on advewntures and fighting in the martial arts. this show main focus is fighting for whats right, friendship, never giving up, and so on. Kids will cheer for Goku!
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marsson_901 August 2006
Well I hadn't really heard about DB before I started to watch the episodes. I totally fell for it, its absolutely adorable, all the characters, the humor, everything, is perfect. But I only have one question, why is Gokus voice made by an girl? Well it doesn't really matter, 'cause she sound like a boy. Well at least the info on the site on IMDb says that it is a girl, but like I said, it doesn't matter, she does her work totally perfect, now I read all the books, watch all the episodes, I can't have enough of it! To everyone who haven't seen it,buy it, download it, watch it on TV, however you do, just make sure you watch it all!
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Earth's mightiest warriors... only smaller.
Op_Prime19 September 2001
Not many know it, but there was a series in Japan that took place before Dragon Ball Z, showing the adventures of a young Goku. This is that series, dubbed into English of course. Like Dragon Ball Z, this series has excellent stories and lots of action. Dragon Ball also shows how many of the familiar characters in DBZ met. It's quite interesting to see the 'back story' to Dragon Ball Z. This is definitely one of the best anime shows on television. Check it out.
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Funny, but Dragon Ball Z is better
Lady_Targaryen24 June 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I started watching "Dragon Ball" when I was very young and I really liked it. But the main difference nowadays, is that I prefer much more DragonBall Z, when Son Goku is an adult then when he is a kid. ''DragonBall'' is very funny and a ''light'' anime to be watched.

The story of DragonBall Z shows us the life of Son Goku, a boy who is a monkey tailed.( This is based on the Chinese folk) Goku was adopted when he was a kid, and created by his grandfather, and in this series we see the battles he fights and all the friends he is going to know for the next series,Dragon Ball Z (like Bulma,Yamcha and Chi chi for example) until he eventually be considered the strongest martial artist in all the universe.

The name ''dragon ball'' is because there are seven magical balls that are separated in different places across the world. When you have them all, they can be used to summon the dragon Shenlong that will give you a wish.
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i love dragon ball
mirnic66611 April 2011
I remember, coming home from school when i was about 10 or 11 years old, and sitting in front of the TV and laugh. Goku, Bulma and much much more incredible and funny characters, entertained me for 2 years, then it was canceled. But i remembered them and now even after 10 years, i still love the show. The story, the fights, and of course the sex. I only wish that people would see that, kids wont go out and start killing people, if the show wasn't censored, the Japanese version had soul it had heart, Americans ruined it. Dragon Ball Z was crap. I know that Goku is now older, married, has a kid, but the show sucked. The show has to return on TV uncensored. MY VOTE 10/10
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colombo_canada6 April 2009
Warning: Spoilers
A classic title excellent animation for the time made. In the series Goku the main character looks for the seven magical dragon ball's with Bulma and others. Whoever gathers the dragon ball's will be granted one wish by the dragon God dragon shenlong. Dragon Ball focuses on the adventures of Goku , a 10 year old boy who through out the series fights different evil enemy's for the good of others or the entire earth. From the very beginning Goku shows amazing super human strength and strange features like a monkey tail. later in the show we find out that the tail is not just some weird mutation and Goku progresses to get stronger and stronger to unbelievable ends. The amazing magical story of dragon ball is followed by further incredible developments in Dragon Ball Z. A really good anime one of the best, very funny and interesting from the beginning same as dragon ball z the anime is one if not the most famous world wide. Worth watching and a must if your into anime.
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Better than people say
nny1200127 June 2004
Warning: Spoilers
I'm all for opinions, but why do people see commercials, or read the escapades of stupid children and decide on the show? The person who said this show is for 10 year olds: You are wrong, this was made for teenagers and adults, but Cartoon Network butchered it to make it look like it was for 10 year olds.

But anyway, on to the review.

it is about a child named Son Goku who crashed down from the heavens. After a while, he was found by a woman named Bulma, and they went on wacky adventures to find the 7 magic DragonBalls. I really like this show, but only the UNCUT DVD's, If I watched one more Edited CN version, I'd poke my eyes out. I DO think I remember seeing this show in a Blockbuster Video before DBZ came out, I got it, and was amazed. I bought up all the merchandise I could. But anyway, here's the rating:

9/10 (*SPOILERS*

Pilaf got on my nerves,and I feel that the Piccolo storyline dragged a bit too long.)
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Amazing Action, Comedy Package
OriginsWolverine7 July 2019
I really watched it in 2019. it's a little bit late at my age, i know but after watching the first episodes, i can't resist myself watching the whole series sequentially. I most liked the innocence of Goku, his resemblance and the other character was quite good too. This show is amazing. After this i watched Dragon Ball Z. That has more action but not quite like the Dragon Ball original show. Of all the Dragon Ball series and movies i liked it best.
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The one that comes before Z
Min1115 March 2019
I bet a large percentage of Dragonball fans saw Dragonball Z before Dragonball, and I was certainly one of them; in fact, I had no idea that a series actually existed before Dragonball Z. I am one of these that actually saw Dragonball Z before Dragonball, yet I still found it interesting though it would've nice to see everything in order, but hey, that's life I guess. Dragonball was a very fine animated series. You could tell just how different it is from Dragonball Z, but that's a very good thing. Yes, there are still plenty of similarities between the two, but they're still different shows. Dragonball has so much humour, and that worked in its favour. The episodes or sagas, do start to get more and more interesting as the series moves on, and not only it gets interesting almost everytime, the story seems to get darker and darker, and that's a good thing because it bodes well for what's going to come ahead afterwards. Basically, Dragonball, is a series which builds everything up for the ultimate show called Z. At the same time, I honestly feel that Dragonball is kind of underrated, and I don't really know why that is. The only downside is that there's too much of these "martial arts" tournaments within this Dragonball series, so there are boring elements to this series it appears. The animated series contains about 150 or so episodes which is perfect for this one I feel. There are a few movies on top of that too, so it's an excellent animated series if you ask me. What makes this series unique is that many of the lesser characters are given more spotlight as compared to Z, so that makes it all the more worthwhile. Also, this may show that because these characters won't appear as often in Z, it would make sense to give them more dialogue in Dragonball. It's not to say that they weren't important in Z because they were, some of them even had essential roles to play within that series, but they just didn't appear as often enough, but that's understandable because Z introduced even more characters. Dragonball was a fine show.
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You should watch this anime. Review of Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z
rajgurm8 July 2017
Warning: Spoilers
Dragon Ball franchise is probably the biggest anime franchise ever. The art style is unique compared to other anime. This is the first mainstream anime and many anime still copy some aspects from Dragon Ball. Most of the anime writers were inspired by Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z. Even though there are more Dragon Ball Z fans than Dragon Ball fans, I still think Dragon Ball is a better overall anime. I love Goku from this series way more than him in Z, and I do not know why. Unlike DBZ, the characters in this anime are not planet busters. The action style in this anime focuses more on Martial Arts and I love it. Krillin, Yamcha, and Tien have a huge role in Dragon Ball and all of these individuals are considered strong, but in Dragon Ball Z, they become kind of useless. By the end of Z, Krillin, Yamcha, and Tien are not even close to how powerful Goku is. My favorite Dragon Ball character is Krillin, but my favorite Dragon Ball Z character is Vegeta. Even though I think Dragon Ball is better, Dragon Ball Z has better character improvements. Example: Vegeta use to be a really cruel and dark Prince of Planet Vegeta, who did not even care about killing his partners (NAPPA). He ends up becoming a good hearted, but really prideful father. Piccolo is a great example of character development too. He is the son of a Demon Namekian, King Piccolo. But, he ends up teaming with the Z Fighters to kill the evil or 'bad' guys. I would rate Dragon Ball Z 9.3/10 because it could have better. They take great steps till the end of the saga, where the person you always want to become the hero, never ends up killing the villain. My favorite Saga is the "Cell" Saga, because we get to see a different hero a.k.a Gohan. If you don't like this review is because, I'm just a 13 year old Dragon Ball fan, who when got into watching this anime, didn't know that this was an anime. Thanks for reading my review and also Dragon Ball Super is 5.5 out of 10 for me.
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Untamed, unashamed and action-packed!
smetin14 June 2017
I'm a 90's kid and grew up with Dragon Ball Z. I never watched the original Dragon Ball since it was never on Cartoon Network whenever I got back from school. However, now that I am 25 (getting old!) I decided to watch the original series where it all started. I had been told it was a lot more light-hearted and fun, so I was looking forward to it. Boy oh boy, was I in for a treat!

Dragon Ball comes from a time when cartoons were truly free to do whatever they chose. From the 1st episode we got a taste of this and saw things that would cause a cartoon to get an instant ban...namely Goku's method of determining what identifies a girl. Goku is the main protagonist in this series as he is in DBZ, but seeing him as a kid really makes you see him in a new light. The word Saiyan is never used, so to new watchers he is just a kid with a tail. He still has the same kind personality and love for fighting (and eating!). The other characters of the series are great too. Roshi is how I remember him in DBZ...as sexist as ever. Seeing others like Yamcha, Bulma, Krillin and Tien as their younger counterparts was also a treat. Their personalities really differed from their DBZ characters and it was great to see them develop throughout the series.

The fighting in Dragon Ball is what I really wanted to see. I knew that it was a lot more focused on martial arts, rather than crazy ki-blasts, powers or even flying (the Nimbus was as close as we got in the early episodes). I have to say, despite the fights being a lot less epic they were still enjoyable. A prime focus on martial arts was actually quite refreshing. The martial arts tournaments were great to see new characters be introduced and seeing their methods.

In terms of the story lines, they were as I had expected from my experience of DBZ. The first few sagas were more of an introduction to the world of martial arts and Dragon Ball. The focus was on collecting the dragon balls and the main enemies were merely those trying to get in Goku's and Bulma's way. However, in later sagas you get to see true evil villains. Seeing Tien and Piccolo as a villains was weird, but the fights were great fun. It was also weird to see Goku struggle against them! Goku from DBZ would have wiped the floor of them!

All in all, I really enjoyed this series. Seeing the origins of my favourite DBZ characters was great. It was a lot more light-hearted than DBZ but it had its serious moments. If you loved DBZ then I highly recommend you watch this. If you are new to the world of Dragon Ball, I would recommend you actually watch this first!
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It's much better than people give it credit for
yabuturtle4 October 2008
Warning: Spoilers
It isn't just filled with sex jokes or Dragon Ball hunts. Only idiots will think of that without watching the rest of the series. It has comedy, drama and action all rolled into one. And it pulls it off effectively. At first there weren't that many villains. They had Emperor Pilaf, but he wasn't nearly as threatening as the others that would come. Goku really had to test himself against the Red Ribbon Army. Then he REALLY had to test himself by fighting the all powerful King Piccolo. Mostly they had to go through tournaments, which don't appear very often in DBZ. This is basically a much tamer version of DBZ.

In some ways it is better than DBZ. While not having as much action, it's much funnier. They are also not insanely powerful as they are on DBZ, and everyone is useful in this series. Even Chouzu and Yajirobe. That's because everyone's power level was kind of similar. In DBZ, some characters are WAY stronger than some other characters, and that makes the other character almost useless. Still it was enjoyable, like this series. It doesn't waste too much time with transformations or power ups, so if you don't like that kind of thing, go ahead and watch this series.
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Wait, where's the 'Z'...
jasonmadrid20 August 2008
Warning: Spoilers
The Dragon Ball series takes place in a sort of trilogy, beginning with "Dragon Ball," the hit sensation "Dragon Ball Z," and the anime-only "Dragon Ball GT." However, for some retarded reason, the original "Dragon Ball" was the last of the three shows to be introduced in America, and for those of us who practically grew up on the octane/steroid/plutonium fueled fights of "Dragon Ball Z," the first edition of the series is underwhelming, almost cartoonish (which is expected, considered that it was probably made for kids...).

Dragon Ball follows the exploits of a 10 to 12-year-old Goku and co. on their journey to find the legendary Dragon Balls, which, when gathered, can grant their user one wish. Along the way, the good guys must match strength and wits with the evil Emperor Pilaff (the blue midget whose voice actor sounds a lot like Garlic Jr.), the Red Ribbon Army (those same guys who made the Androids in Dragon Ball Z), and, of course, the demon Piccolo (later revealed to be an alien when it was revealed in Z that nine tenths of the characters are actually aliens!).

As the anime that started it all, it's entertaining enough, but after sitting through the first two "sagas" of Dragon Ball Z, you can't help but wonder when the heck they start powering up. The gargantuan power levels which drive the plot of Z haven't yet been achieved, meaning that the story line is driven less by pure action and more by actual questing. As Goku and his fellow fighters grow (which is EXTREMELY slow but steady), they pick up new techniques, but up until the Piccolo saga, those techniques alone aren't the driving force of the story. Instead of fighting guys with huge muscles, raging auras, and death beams, they take on giant robots, goofy-looking monsters, and, in the case of Goku, the entire Red Ribbon Army, all while taking the time to admire the strange and beautiful world they live in before it gets trashed by those guys from outer space one show later.

The "sagas" of the show are as such: Intro arc, Tournament, Red Ribbon army, next Tournament, Piccolo, and that Tournament with Piccolo. When our heroes aren't looking for the Dragon Balls (which, oddly enough, are actually included in the story line), they're at the World Martial Arts Tournament, showcasing their fancy new techniques that are meant to incapacitate or take out their opponent (as opposed to, say, wiping out half the F$^&%NG planet).

The first two sagas involve a lot of hijinks, including a villain who can't even take himself seriously and a Tournament between Goku, Master Roshi, and a bunch of cartoon animals. The next two sagas showcase the firepower that the sadistic Red Ribbon Army is willing to unleash in their search for the Dragon Balls, while introducing "Tien," the first uber-powerful antagonist to be introduced in the series, in time for the second Tournament. The final chunk of the show deals with the dreaded "King Piccolo" and the heroes' efforts to stop him from wiping out civilization as we know it, including Goku's ascension into the (adult) hero we all know and love.

There was also a little, five-episode deal after the final Tournament where Goku had to save the Ox King from a killer volcano that was consuming his house or something, which ends with Goku and Chi-Chi's wedding and that witch-lady telling everyone what's in store for the future, and then the voice-over guy says, "If you wanna see what kind of WACKY and ZANY adventures await our heroes, stay tuned for Dragon Ball Z!" (I looked into the crystal ball and saw Radditz flick a bullet right through a farmer, leaving him in a bloody heap. Then there was blood, violent punch, more blood, Radditz blows up a mountain, Goku dies in a bloody heap inside the FIRST FOUR EPISODES! Then there's Vegeta, Frieza, a combo of Frieza and Vegeta, death, death, violent punch, a combo of Goten and Trunks, a combo of Goku and Vegeta, a combo of Buu, Goku, Vegeta and whoever else he ate, more death, more death, lot of lights, earth rumbles beneath our feet, more death...oh, Trunks and Goten are doing show tunes, that's pretty zany...oh, they just died when the planet blew up, there's some Mortal Kombat music...)

Best viewed if you can ignore or disregard the fact that the major characters end up becoming WMD's and that this show with such a care-free, adventurous attitude ends up evolving (or devolving, depending on your point of view) into a perpetual slugfest between plutonium-powered aliens with the fate of the not-so-care-free universe at stake. If you're a fan of the actual Dragon Balls (as opposed to the shows, movies, and video games named after them), that also helps...
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Dragon Ball Rocked!!!! Warning: Spoilers
Dragon Ball is the beginning of the long running series that has become insanely popular in America. In the beginning it's a campy, funny adventure with Goku, a happy boy that's has amazing power for not only a child his age, but for most normal people. Of course no one's normal in this show. He first meets Bulma, a pretty blue haired teenager. Bulma explains to Goku (And us) about the legendary Dragon Balls which have the power to grant you one wish. Any wish you desire. The story takes off from there. As the story progresses though, the story losses it's campy feel and turns into a rather dark telling of Goku's travels. Towards the end he's friends actually die which is sort of strange because when I first started watching it I thought it was kids show. It was for awhile. But the show obviously is preparing you for the next series Dragon Ball Z, a much darker telling of Goku's travels. But Dragon Ball is great show and has a hero that pretty simple. Goku is pure of heart and will always be, no matter what.
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A Nostalgic road trip of the Highest Caliber!
hanifmuhammad921 October 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Dragon Ball is a phenomenal show! It's one of the most influential anime's of all time and tells a timeless story that will be remembered for generations to come. I love everything about this awesome series and hope to one day share it with my kids, in order to keep the Dragon Ball Legacy alive. Dragon Ball tells the story of Goku, A young boy born with a Monkey tail who was found stranded in the woods by an old farmer named Gohan. He was raised as a kind, and a gentle loving boy who enjoys food and martial arts. One day Goku meets Bulma, bossy blue haired dame with a genius intellect who shares the secret of the seven Magic Dragon Balls with Goku, objects that when collected summoned the Eternal Dragon who has the ability to grant the discovery a single wish. Goku accompanies Bulma on her quest and so begins the adventure of lifetime. Dragon Ball is one of the most unique shows none to man. It's hilarious, Wildly entertaining, filled with mystifying adventure and Exciting, pulse pounding fight scenes and a Heart bigger than the mystical Dragon Shenron himself. It has everything that anyone could ever want in a show, maybe even more. All Five Seasons of the show contain something that make the show one of a kind and a must watch for anyone who hasn't experienced it already.

Season one: In the first arc the audience is first introduced to the Dragon Balls as well as the major characters that will accompany Goku on his journey. Master Roshi, Bulma, and Yamcha are all Stellar in their roles. There's also the introduction of Krillian who accompanies Goku during his training on Roshi's Island. It all leads to the two warriors participation in the World Wide Martial Arts tournament which is truly a sight to behold. You'll fall in love with Goku by the end of the season no question about it.

Season 2: This Seasons is very build up heavy but is already Great storytelling. We meet the Red Ribbon Army which is very adversary to this season as well as many story arcs down the line. We also Meet an Adversary known as Mercenary Tao, possibly one of the coolest Assassins in Fictional history.

Season 3: Another Fantastic Season. The Climb to the top of Korrin Tower is extremely Cathortic. The rematch between Goku and Mercenary Tao is amazing! Plus Goku reuniting with his Grandpa Gohan is touching as well. Not to mention that there's another Martial Arts tournament at the end of this season.

Season 4: So much Awesomeness! From Goku's fight with Tien to his confrontation with the Evil Demon King Piccolo. It all rules and is filled with some of the most mature writing in Dragon Ball. Which is extremely daring given how goody and comedic it usually is. The writers really went all out with this one.

Season 5: The best season I think. Goku finally grows up and we get a taste of the magnificent powerhouse of a warrior that he will become. Goku fights Piccolo in the world Martial Arts tournament attacking with the iconic Meteor combination, ending in a Kamehameha wave that remains one of the most triumphant and inspirational in the series to this very day. it's worth watching for that reason alone.
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