Even though Akira Toriyama's Dragon Ball series is now decades into its lifespan and it ostensibly ended for years before a recent resuscitation, it’s never been more popular. Dragon Ball is one of those rare franchises that has nearly as large of a presence in the West as it does over in Japan and it’s a series that could break through and find borderline mainstream success with Western audiences. Even though most of the installments in the Dragon Ball franchise have been met with acclaim from fans—the latest addition to the canon, Dragon Ball Super, is especially popular—there’s one series that is consistently the odd one out.
Dragon Ball GT was the original follow-up series to Dragon Ball Z, which proceeded to continue the story of Goku after the end of the Buu arc. Dragon Ball GT takes a number of bold moves that helped turn it into a rather controversial addition to the Dragon Ball world. Not only is it largely mocked, but most didn't even consider it to be canon when it was the only sequel around. In spite of its contentious reputation, Dragon Ball GT is still a fascinating anime to examine, especially when it comes to its more egregious faults. Accordingly, Here Are 30 Ridiculous Mistakes in Dragon Ball GT Only True Fans Noticed!
30 The Dub's Theme Song, "Step Into The Grand Tour"
Anime dubs, Dragon Ball included, have slowly figured out what to do with their theme songs. They understand that audiences either want to experience the original music, rather than the decision to go in some entirely different Westernized direction. Accordingly, the themes in the dubs for Dragon Ball Kai and Dragon Ball Super are faithful adaptations, but matters were not so fortunate back during the execution of Dragon Ball GT’s dub.
“Step into the Grand Tour” is such a dreadful, tone-deaf theme that manages to be even more disrespectful than Dragon Ball Z’s infamous “Rock the Dragon.” What’s even worse about all of this is that the show’s original Japanese theme is so beautiful.
29 Vegeta's Hairstyle Changes
One of the more iconic aspects of Dragon Ball is the ridiculous hairstyles that adorn many of the character’s heads. The Saiyans in particular have especially extreme hairdos, but at one point Dragon Ball Z attempts to rationalize and explain this oddity. In Dragon Ball Z, Vegeta states that a Saiyan’s hairstyle can never change, as silly as this may sound.
When Dragon Ball GT comes around, Vegeta has a decidedly lamer haircut, which not only contradicts Saiyan lore, but it just looks worse. It’s even more disheartening that Akira Toriyama was still responsible for GT’s character designs, which means Vegeta’s new haircut was his idea. And let’s not even get started on the mustache…
28 Baby Vegeta's Strength And Speed
There are plenty of inconsistencies throughout Dragon Ball’s run in regards to the strength and speed of characters. Such a thing is inevitable when characters grow to increasingly ridiculous power levels. Unsurprisingly, this becomes a bit of an issue in Dragon Ball GT, but some are more egregious than others.
Baby Vegeta is a contentious villain among fans and it’s the series finding yet another way to pit Goku and Vegeta against each other. GT shows that Golden Great Ape Baby Vegeta is faster than Super Saiyan 4 Goku, which is absurd considering Great Apes are supposed to be so. Plus, base level Baby Vegeta is stronger than Super Saiyan 3 Goku.
27 Pilaf Reaches Korin's Tower Via Aircraft
Some of the earlier concepts that get established in the original Dragon Ball series have a tendency to fall to the wayside by the time Dragon Ball GT comes about. The series has established that Korin’s Tower is an elusive location that’s supposed to be an incredible challenge in order to scale.
It’s heavily implied that people must reach this destination by their own strength, and even though there are other examples of this rule being broken, it’s still kind of silly that Pilaf and company fly over there. Even if they could get there by aircraft, it’s highly suspicious that Korin or Yajirobe would actually let them gain access in the first place.
26 The Fact That Baby Remembers Vegeta
Whether the idea works or not, there’s something to be said for bringing back the race of Tuffles from Dragon Ball Z’s filler and using them to fuel a revenge story against the Saiyan race. The fact that Baby has some personal stakes in his battle and in many ways is a victim, helps gives this arc some depth and reminds the audience that Saiyans were an evil race for much longer than they’ve turned a new leaf.
As Baby goes on his past-fueled rampage, he makes reference to the fact that he remembers Vegeta. This is an interesting connection, but all of the Tuffles were eliminated long before Vegeta was born.
25 The Treatment Of Gohan
Towards the height of the Buu arc in Dragon Ball Z, it really feels like Gohan will be a major power player and maybe even the one to take out the villain in the end. This is very much not the case, but a large amount of episodes still spend time powering up Gohan as he trains with the Z Sword and gains his Ultimate power upgrade.
Dragon Ball Z ends too soon after Ultimate Gohan comes into play to fully understand it, which is why it’s so upsetting to see Dragon Ball GT just abandon it. Gohan totally falls off the radar in terms of strong characters and he’s just left in mystery.
24 Baby Vegeta Uses An Evil Genki Dama
Once again, Dragon Ball GT really tried hard to conjure up goodwill based on the fact that it was building to its biggest showdown between Goku and Vegeta yet and that even the Great Ape transformations would come back into play. Whether you’re a fan of the Baby Vegeta material or not, the fight itself contains some highlights. Baby Vegeta pulls out all of the stops to take out Goku, some of which don’t exactly have precedent.
At one point Baby Vegeta puts together negative energy to assemble the Revenge Death Ball, which is essentially just an evil version of Goku’s Genki Dama. This move comes out of nowhere and has absolutely no basis in the canon of the series!
23 Why Wouldn't Kami Just Destroy The Black Star Dragon Balls?
It’s funny to think that when the original Dragon Ball began, the concept of seven orbs that granted the user a wish was as extravagant a goal as possible. As the series has gone on, it’s found reasons to create more sets of Dragon Balls that grant even more unfathomable requests, like multiple wishes or the ability to save universes. Dragon Ball GT plays this game too and introduces the Black Star Dragon Balls, which are a really big risk with very little reward.
Since the Black Star Dragon Balls seem to cause many more problems than they’re worth, then why didn’t Kami just destroy them or take some precaution so they could never be accessed?
22 Wonky Timeline
It’s always better to not try to nitpick when it comes to Dragon Ball’s many timelines and its complicated chronology. Dragon Ball GT struggles in some similar areas, which makes it especially difficult for the fans that are sticklers for details. The end of Dragon Ball GT features a jump into the future where an older version of Uub can be seen, however, Pan doesn’t appear to be any older and is still a kid.
Matters get even more twisted due to the fact that GT’s dub says that it takes place ten years after Dragon Ball Z, when in fact it’s actually just five!
21 That New Planet Plant Is Right Next To Earth
One of the first major arcs in Dragon Ball GT involves Baby, a lone survivor of the Tuffle race, eager to avenge his people and pay back the Saiyans what they deserve. Even though Baby’s plan involves working out a lot of his pent up aggression over the Saiyan race, humans and planet Earth happen to suffer just as much here.
Baby opts for a new home world, but it’s extremely convenient that the new Planet Plant happens to be so close to Earth. Furthermore, this means that Baby’s plan to destroy Earth would actually probably have severe blow-back on such a nearby planet.
20 Old Kai’s Knowledge Of Super Saiyan 4
It’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that a new Dragon Ball series is going to feature new stages of Super Saiyan. Dragon Ball Z makes it clear that their rumors of a Legendary Super Saiyan, but beyond the initial transformation, everything has been fresh information. It stands to reason that Gohan was the first Super Saiyan 2, Goku was the first Super Saiyan 3, and so on.
However, Old Kai educates Goku about Super Saiyan 4s and basically implies that there were other Super Saiyan 4s before him, which doesn't really make sense. Goku should be the first one to become Super Saiyan 4, or otherwise Frieza or Beerus should have been aware of them.
19 The Means Behind The Black Star Dragon Balls’ Creation
There were plausible enough explanations at the ready when the Namekian Dragon Balls and the Super Dragon Balls come into play. Things are much murkier when it comes to the Black Star Dragon Balls and it really feels like the series has to jump backwards through hoops in order to justify these new orbs and how they’re able to exist.
Dragon Ball GT tries to explain the Black Star Dragon Balls in relation to when the evil was expelled from Kami and purity is found. This is an interesting idea that really breaks down Kami’s origins, but it doesn’t really track, considering all of the merging that Namekians have done after the fact.
18 Artificially Reaching A Super Saiyan Stage
Dragon Ball’s fighters are full of honor and the series has been pretty clear that Super Saiyan transformations are reserved for groundbreaking moments that are catalysts for the individuals. The series gets a little more liberal with this as it goes on, but Saiyans have still always turned into Super Saiyans by themselves.
In Dragon Ball GT, Blutz Waves are introduced in relation to Great Apes. However, Bulma’s Blutz Wave Generator is also used by Vegeta to skip Super Saiyan 3 and attain Super Saiyan 4, which is not only extremely suspect, but the kind of thing that it feels like Vegeta would be extremely against. It’s like Super Saiyan steroids.
17 The Wishes That The Shadow Shenron Are Based On
Dragon Ball GT’s final arc is not only the series’ most satisfying, but it also finds an entertaining concept for its villains. Goku is staffed with defeating seven different versions of Shenron that are each based on Dragon Ball wishes from throughout the show’s run. This finds a clever way to look back at the show’s history, but it’s also an inventive twist on the fundamental idea that Shenron is good.
This isn’t a bad idea in principle, but it shouldn’t see some of the more altruistic wishes become bad in retrospect because of this. The wishes that were made post-Cell Games’ from Dende’s Dragon Balls shouldn’t have any presence here, but they do.
16 The Return Of Goku's Tail
Dragon Ball GT attempts to find a lot of goodwill by returning to many of the franchise’s oldest ideas. This boost of nostalgia is nice in some circumstances, but a lot of the time it comes at the expense of the show’s continuity and it isn’t worth the mental gymnastics that need to take place to justify it.
For example, Dragon Ball GT sees Old Kai pull out Goku’s tail so he can turn into a Super Saiyan 4. However, Goku’s tail wasn’t just removed in the past, but Kami magically deals with it and assures that it won't return. So what gives here? At least have Old Kai reverse the spell first or something.
15 Uub Performs In The Tenkaichi Budokai With A Helmet
Dragon Ball has a weird tradition of decking its characters out in ridiculous costumes in order to conceal their identity or hide how powerful they are. Superheroes routinely go about hiding their identities, but matters are much different on Dragon Ball. In spite of how masked fighters like the Great Saiyaman have come along in the past, they’ve all been “legal.” The same can’t be said for Uub’s Papayaman.
Uub competes in the Tenkaichi Budokai as Papayman. This would be fine, but this costume features a helmet and head wear isn’t prohibited in the tournament. He breaks the rules!
14 The Lack Of Halos On The Deceased
The Dragon Ball anime has always been full of inconsistencies when it comes to its depiction of the afterlife and the rules of those that shuffle off of this mortal coil. Meeting your demise has always been a very real possibility within Dragon Ball, but thanks to the Dragon Balls, so has coming back to life and getting a second chance.
In Dragon Ball Z, it’s initially stated that deceased villains don’t get to keep their bodies in their afterlife. Later, the anime adaptation concedes that they can, but that they sport halos. This is present at the check-in station in GT, but then later the halos are otherwise gone when Hell’s occupants escape back to Earth!
13 Dende Asks For A First Aid Kit
The characters within Dragon Ball have to go through so much and make impossible decisions on the fly that it’s excusable when anyone slips up or breaks under the high pressure. That being said, the idea of forgetting your own natural powers is pretty egregious and goes too far.
After Goku and Uub complete their vigorous training in the Room of Spirit and Time, Dende asks Mr. Popo to get a first aid kit to tend to their wounds. Dende should easily just be able to heal them, but it’s completely overlooked. This isn’t even a line that only shows up in the dub and is also present in the original script!
12 Goku Teleports To Super Android 17
Goku’s Instant Transmission is really a lifesaver. It’s truly the most efficient way to get from point A to point B and it’s the perfect escape plan for when Goku’s truly in a jam. One of the core principles of this teleportation technique is that Goku needs to be able to lock onto someone else’s ki energy as a reference point. This usually isn’t a problem, but it’s a factor that causes inconsistencies in Dragon Ball GT.
Goku uses Instant Transmission to reach Super Android 17 during their big battle, but Androids aren’t supposed to have ki. At another point Trunks also says he can sense that Android 17 is nearby, due to his ki.
11 The Age Of Master Roshi's Turtle
Master Roshi’s Turtle is a character that’s present throughout the entire series, but he’s never given too much attention. Funnily enough, the times that GT does shine a spotlight on him only highlights other issues with the character.
In Dragon Ball GT’s dub, Krillin states that Turtle isn’t close to 1000 years old, but his 1000th birthday actually gets celebrate in the Dragon Ball Z episode, “Krillin’s Proposal.” Granted, “Krillin’s Proposal” is filler, but arguably so is all of GT. It can’t even be consistent with its own inconsistencies and shows just how far Funimation’s script work has grown to be.
10 Why Not Use The Dragon Balls To Wish For Goku To Be An Adult?
One of the most controversial decisions that Dragon Ball GT makes is that the show turns Goku back into a child and tries to reclaim some of the magic of the original Dragon Ball series. Goku’s initial stretch as a child in GT feels like a plot contrivance, but after the obstacle of the Black Star Dragon Balls, it just becomes weird that he remains a child.
Goku’s in no harm as a child, but his powers are weakened. Why not immediately use the Dragon Balls to fix this problem? Eventually, this is what’s done at the conclusion of GT, but it makes no sense for him to stay in this state for so long.
9 Trunks’ Sword
Adult Trunks’ relationship with his sword has always been a little confusing in the Dragon Ball universe. When Future Trunks arrives, a sword is very much his trademark weapon, but that’s not to say that young Trunks would grow up to use one in his life. They’re different people. That being said, Trunks does get Tapion’s sword in Wrath of the Dragon, which leaves things up to interpretation.
Dragon Ball GT features a grown up Trunks, who doesn’t use a sword in the series, but in the show’s opening credits he does swing one! This makes it even less clear what Trunks’ relationship is with swords.
8 The Storied History Of Dragon Balls
Dragon Ball GT conjures quite the adventurous tone as the show features lots of planet hopping through the universe in search of the Black Star Dragon Balls. Through Goku and company’s quests across the galaxy, they learn that Dragon Balls have caused countless problems on many other planets.
This is somewhat problematic because only Namekians can create Dragon Balls, so they’re really just relics that are native to Earth and Namek. While it stands to reason that savvy people like Frieza know about Dragon Balls, it seems a little unusual that they would have devastated other planets, when they’d like just be rumors at best.
7 Pan Is Goku Jr.'s Grandmother
Towards the end of Dragon Ball GT, the series attempts to become particularly sweet and try to pull at the audience’s heartstrings. The conclusion of the series features a flash to the future and a glimpse of what the future generations of Earth’s protectors will look like. In a particularly touching scene, an elderly Pan cheers on her grandson, Goku Jr., at the Tenkaichi Budokai. This is particularly touching, but then who is Goku Jr.’s father, who would presumably also be named Goku?
If that wasn’t enough, it’s also very suspicious that he fights against a Vegeta Jr. who’s the same age. It’s a nice tribute, but they could have done something else.
6 It Basically Redoes Every Major Saga From Dragon Ball Z
Dragon Ball GT only lasts for 64 episodes and doesn’t experience as lengthy of a run as the other Dragon Ball series. In spite of this, the anime still tries to pack a lot into these 64 episodes, but more astute viewers will notice that these story arcs are all strangely familiar.
All of Dragon Ball GT’s major arcs are basically rehashes of Dragon Ball Z’s big stories. Baby is the new Frieza, Super 17 is the new Cell, and the Shadow Dragons are Buu-like. Not to mention that the show's first arc is a remake of Dragon Ball's original arc. It's almost like GT crams all of DB and DBZ into 64 episodes.
5 Krillin Is Revived With The Dragon Balls
At times it feels like Krillin is Dragon Ball’s persistent punching bag. He’s a reliable fighter and Goku’s best friend, but he’s also a character that perishes in Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, and also Dragon Ball GT. Krillin falls by the hand of Super 17, which is extremely sad, but he’s later brought back to life along with all of the other victims. Goku even expresses his confidence in how this approach will work and to not worry about Krillin.
In theory, this would work. However, Krillin has already been revived with these Dragon Balls, which means such a thing shouldn’t be possible.
4 Goku Becomes An Adult When He Turns Super Saiyan 4
Dragon Ball GT struggles with finding the right moment to transition Goku back to an adult after he’s turned into a child. While the pint-sized character change provides a welcome change of pace, it also makes transformations like Super Saiyan 3 look even weirder. Something particularly strange occurs when Goku turns Super Saiyan 4 and his child-like self temporarily becomes an adult for some reason.
Clearly it’d just be weird if this kid had such crazy powers, so Goku turns into an adult for the form, but then he also turns back when it’s over. This is just so nonsensical. He should have just stayed an adult after he transformed.
3 Why Would You Ever Use The Black Star Dragon Balls?
The Dragon Balls are a clear temptation for countless tyrants throughout the course of the series, but other than the difficulty in finding the orbs, there’s never really been a downside to using their powers. This drastically changes with the advent of the Black Star Dragon Balls.
After the Black Star Dragon Balls are used, the planet they are used on will explode within a year's time if they're not then gathered again. You only get one basic wish on them too, so why even bother? The risk is absolutely not worth it, especially when things like Namekian Dragon Balls give out three problem-free wishes. It’s just a forced reason to start an adventure.
2 Piccolo Is Eliminated For Good
Dragon Ball is a series that’s slowly come to just focus on Goku and Vegeta, but even with its marginalized perspective, Piccolo is still a character that manages to make an impact and remain relevant. Dragon Ball GT still makes use of Piccolo, but it’s a major disservice to the character. The most frustrating thing about all of this is that the series doesn’t just squander Piccolo, but it permanently gets rid of him!
Piccolo is fused with Kami and because Kami created the Black Star Dragon Balls, he needs to stay deceased so they’ll remain inactive. Many characters perish and come back, so while it's noble, it's awful to permanently bench this character.
1 Akira Toriyama's Lack Of Major Involvement
Akira Toriyama is the creator of Dragon Ball and very obviously the lifeblood of the franchise. While he hasn’t been involved with every aspect of Dragon Ball, such as most of the feature films or video games, it came as a major shock to people that he would not be responsible for Dragon Ball GT’s story and that the series would be anime only, with no manga counterpart.
Toriyama still came up with the character designs for the older version of the cast, but his lack of presence elsewhere turned into a major oversight. It’s the whole reason why there are still debates on whether Dragon Ball GT is non-canonical "filler" or not.
These are all of the big inconsistencies and errors from Dragon Ball GT that we could assemble, but have we overlooked anything crucial? Now’s your chance to summon Shenron and sound off in the comments below!