The Dragon Ball series is one of the most popular anime shows of all time, and ever since the sequel program Dragon Ball Z ended its Japanese TV run in 1996 (it ran from 1996-2003 in the U.S.), fans have been outspoken about wanting a brand new installment. In February of 1996 Toei Animation produced Dragon Ball GT (a 64-episode non-canon series that does not adapt Akira Toriyama’s manga) and although the fan-response was less than stellar, the show proved there were still stories to be told in the franchise.
Fast forward to the release of Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods in March of 2013 and the brand is just as hot as ever. Not only was Battle of the Gods the first DBZ movie in seventeen years to receive a theatrical release, but the film successfully expanded upon the Dragon Ball mythos and was an official part of the canon – set during the time-skip in chapter 517 of the original manga. Now, with a new movie (Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F) close at hand, Dragon Ball is also getting a new TV anime series.
The brand new series titled Dragon Ball Super will premiere on Fuji TV and other channels on Sunday at 9:00 A.M. The story will be set a few years after the defeat of Majin Buu when the Earth has become peaceful again.
Fuji TV producer Osamu Nozaki teased an even greater foe in the coming series:
“As I read the plot [of the series] I’ve already received from Akira Toriyama, my dreams for this begin to expand. An enemy even stronger than Buu or Freeza may appear…”
Masako Nozawa (the voice of Goku, Gohan, and Goten) had this to say:
“We’ve always used the word ‘cho’ (Super) with Dragon Ball in commercials, games and the like, but the fact that the series titled Dragon Ball Super is beginning is the best thing ever.”
Toriyama is credited as the original series creator and for “original story and character concepts” – which should give longtime fans encouragement that Dragon Ball Super isn’t just a shameless cash grab (we’re looking at you Dragon Ball: Evolution). Instead, the series is giving credit where it is due – and there’s plenty of reason to believe that the show will do Toriyama’s original creations justice. A new Dragon Ball series has been long-awaited and it was only a matter of time before Goku was given fresh opportunities to save the world from evil. Rumors had been surfacing for years about a potential reboot, all of which lacked credibility considering the series successfully put an end to its main storyline.
However, the finale did leave a few loose ends – most notably: the episode showed Goku taking Uub (a reincarnation of the villain Majin Buu) as his mentor and bidding goodbye to his friends and family to embark on a “new adventure.”
Also of note: Dragon Ball Z only featured a small number of main villains (Raditz, Vegeta, Freeza, the Androids, Cell and Majin Buu) which brings attention to the multiple non-canon movies associated with the DBZ characters (Broly – The Legendary Super Saiyan, Bojack Unbound, Fusion Reborn). While none of these movies count as part of the official storyline, they produced some of the more popular characters (Broly, Bojack, Janemba) and explored stories that could inspire future plots for the series (evident by the resurrection of fan-favorite Freeza in Resurrection F as he was brought back in Fusion Reborn).
It will be interesting to see how Dragon Ball Super will be handled and what the response will be come June. Though, with popular animes like Death Note and Attack on Titan getting live-action feature film and TV adaptations, it seems like the perfect time for DBZ to step back into the spotlight.
Dragon Ball Super premieres on Fuji TV in July.
Source: Anime News Network