Dragon Ball GT has never been a particularly beloved series. Even during its heyday, it was seen as inherently lesser than its predecessors. Not only was Akira Toriyama not working on the series, but Dragon Ball GT also wasn’t even adapting the manga anymore. This is to say nothing of the fact that DBZ’s popularity had begun slowing down once the manga ended.
As a result, Dragon Ball GT ended up with a bit of an identity crisis, unsure of which direction to ultimately take itself in. Many plots that it should have followed up on were left on the cutting room floor as a result. At only 64 episodes, Dragon Ball GT is the shortest show in the series while also home to quite a few unresolved storylines.
10 Ledgic, The Rival Who Wasn’t Meant To Be
Rivals are an important part of Dragon Ball’s DNA. From as early as the first volume, Goku had a rival through Yamcha. There isn’t a single portion of the original series where Goku goes without a rival.
It’s disappointing, then, that Dragon Ball GT fails to give Goku a proper rivalry. Interestingly, it’s quite clear that the writers intended Ledgic to return as Goku’s rival at some point, but once Baby enters the picture, the series shifts direction so boldly that there ends up being no room for Ledgic to come back meaningfully.
9 How Do The Dragon Balls Even Work Anymore?
If there’s one thing fans can give Dragon Ball GT credit for, it’s actually using the Dragon Balls in an interesting manner. Not only do they outright reject the heroes at the end of it all, but they also shatter and end up serving as the anime’s final antagonist. It’s a unique direction to take the series in, but one that works conceptually.
Unfortunately, Toei fails to actually develop the concept. At the end of the final arc, Goku leaves with the Dragon Balls and Shenlong, presumably forever. Here’s the thing, though: the DBGT TV Special starring Goku Junior had already aired at this point and the Dragon Balls were very much intact with no real logic behind their presence.
8 Goku, The Spirit Of The Four-Star Ball
Naturally, this is the result of the TV Special releasing before the end of the series. Toei still didn’t know how to end GT, making the Dragon Ball predicament awkward, to say the least. It’s even worse when taking into consideration the fact that the special makes Goku a spirit who watches over the Four-Star Ball.
As this spirit, he can seemingly grant wishes as well, completely contradicting the rules established for granting wishes. Toei more or less locked themselves into a corner with the spirit Goku debacle, forcing them to write out Goku at the end of GT.
7 Piccolo, Protector Of Hell
Despite being one of the five principal characters in the original series, Piccolo does virtually nothing of note throughout the entirety of GT, save for dying near the end of the Baby arc. He ends up becoming the protector of Hell, but little is done with this premise.
He more or less only has this role so he can briefly appear during the Super 17 arc and then one last time at the very end of the series. It ends up being not only a waste of Piccolo but also the premise of Hell as a tangible place, one of the few fixtures Toei adopted from the anime.
6 Baby Goku, The Villain Who Wasn’t Meant To Be
The Baby arc is far and away the best arc in Dragon Ball GT, but it still has quite a few problems. Most notably, Baby isn’t actually all that compelling in the grand scheme of things. He has a great motivation, but his actions don’t always make sense. While it’s nice to see Goku and Vegeta square off yet again thanks to Baby, it’s a bit tired by this point.
More importantly, Baby brings up a very interesting proposition that he never follows up on: taking Goku’s body. As Baby Goku, Baby believes he’d be downright invincible… but he never does anything with this information. It’s immediately forgotten and Goku is never made a target.
5 17’s Whole Arc
For as good a job Dragon Ball Super ultimately did with No. 17, Dragon Ball GT leaves a lot to be desired—and this is even with 17 as a full-blown antagonist. The Super 17 arc is easily the worst arc in the franchise. It makes no sense, 17’s motivation is non-existent, and his arc never actually reaches a proper resolution.
He’s a villain, but he’s not, actually. He’s being more or less possessed and 18 has to stop him, but she can’t. Goku steps in to say the day, naturally, but there’s no emotional connection between Goku and 17. As a result, 17’s character arc gets locked in limbo as Goku ends up defeating him like any other villain.
4 Oob, Goku’s Successor
It’s clear that Akira Toriyama had no intentions to ever follow up on Oob as a character. He was meant to represent a younger Goku, the idea that anyone can go above and beyond their station in life. Oob is a concept, but he’s also interesting enough where it wouldn’t be too difficult to flesh his character out.
Unfortunately, Dragon Ball GT utterly fails when it comes to giving Oob anything to do in the series. He’s meant to be Goku’s successor, but he ends up becoming a bit player before the Baby arc ever ends. He’s given a rushed character arc and then doesn’t even end up playing a meaningful role in the final battle.
3 Goku Junior & The 64th Tenkaichi Budokai
Closing out Dragon Ball GT with the 64th Tenkaichi Budokai is a rather inspired and charming decision, but it also brings with it several questions that end up muddying up the finale. For starters, what’s the deal with Goku Junior and Vegeta Junior? How do they not know each other?
The 64th Tenkaichi Budokai doesn’t even come to an end, leaving the audience guessing whether Goku Junior or Vegeta Junior won. Which as a concept makes sense… for a series where Vegeta mattered. Since >GT doesn’t really use Vegeta properly, the 64th Tenkaichi Budokai ends up feeling awkward.
2 Super Saiyan Pan
The fact that Pan never turns Super Saiyan is downright criminal. Goku Junior, a character who appears twice, is allowed to turn Super Saiyan, but Dragon Ball GT’s deuteragonist is forced to endure the whole series without transforming. Worse yet, there are multiple moments in the show where it would have made sense for Pan to transform.
Goku turning into a Golden Oozaru during the Baby arc seems to set up Pan’s transformation quite clearly… only for Super Saiyan 4 to show up and overshadow her arc. Come the end of the series, Pan could have transformed to stop one of the Evil Dragons, but she ends up letting Goku handle everything himself.
1 The Ending
For as sentimental as Dragon Ball GT’s ending is, it doesn’t actually make a lick of sense in the context of the franchise. Goku seemingly dies, comes back to life, finishes off Omega with a universal Genki Dama, and then disappears with Shenlong and the Dragon Balls.
This ending has no basis in the franchise’s lore and even goes against the series’ core themes. It brings Dragon Ball GT to its emotional high, but at the expense of any logic. That said, Dragon Ball GT was clearly struggling throughout its run, so a more ethereal and conceptual finale does at least ensure the series ends on a memorable note.