Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball series is not only one of the most popular anime of all time, but it also helped make tremendous strides towards the popularization of anime outside of Japan. It’s safe to say that if Dragon Ball never caught on overseas, then the amount of prolific dubbed anime that is available today would also be drastically smaller.
On its surface level, Dragon Ball isn’t exactly a complicated show and all of its connected series feature the universal idea of good versus evil. Additionally, the longer that the Dragon Ball universe goes on, it continues to grow larger and crazier (Goku and company now literally battle Gods).
These higher, more insane stakes translate to good storytelling, but they also see the franchise become more implausible and cracks begin to form in its foundation of logic.
It’s always fun when Dragon Ball can surprise its audience or turn up the suspense in a legitimate way, but this can also result in careless, unexplainable plot holes that jeopardize the series. Dragon Ball may currently be more popular than ever, but that doesn’t mean that it makes any more sense than it has in the past.
Accordingly, here are the 16 Things About The Dragon Ball Franchise That Make Absolutely No Sense.
16 The Existence Of Dinosaurs, Vampires, Ghosts, And More
Dragon Ball is clearly a series that plays with the fantastical and isn’t meant to be that grounded in reality, but there is still a baseline that’s present.
There are aliens and otherworldly villains that regularly appear in the series, but in spite of these unbelievable characters, the Earth is fairly representative of real life. Dragon Ball depicts its world to be modern in many ways, but for whatever reason dinosaurs appear to have never gone extinct.
Both dinosaurs and dragons pop up throughout the franchise with no real answer behind their existence. Furthermore, in the original Dragon Ball Fortune Teller Baba has Goku square off against her cabal of haunted house style warriors.
These fighters are creatures like vampires, mummies, and an actual devil, all of which certainly raise a lot of questions that complicate the universe for more damage than they may be worth.
15 The Fact That No Z Warriors Have Wished For Immortality
In Dragon Ball, so many villains pine for the goal of attaining immortality. It’s such a pipe dream that immortality essentiality becomes the ultimate bad guy wish.
However, due to the constant threats from the universe that continue to plague Earth, wouldn’t it make a lot of sense for a bunch of the good guys to wish for this luxury so they can always keep the universe safe?
Sure, a big part of the hero gig is to be selfless and put others before yourself, but this would obviously be for the greater good.
Additionally, if the universe knew that Goku or Vegeta were immortal, it might make any intruders less likely to invade Earth.
On the topic of wishes, the prospect of assembling the Dragon Balls and getting a wish from Shenron used to be such a rare honor. This momentous act has turned into an abused plot device.
14 The Parameters Within Majin Buu’s Body
The physics and science over a chaotic, pink destruction demon probably aren’t going to make a lot of sense to begin with, but some especially wonky business goes down when it comes to Majin Buu’s insides.
First of all, when Majin Buu absorbs people to gain his strength, they become imprisoned within a giant physics-defying pink prison. Buu benefits from elasticity, but his internal prison is depicted as a huge, sprawling labyrinth that could be the size of a city. They’re inside someone’s who’s maybe five feet tall.
Furthermore, the rules within Buu are wildly inconsistent. Sometimes when Buu eats or absorbs people they die, but when it’s a more important character they simply become trapped.
Also, when Vegito gets absorbed, this seemingly permanent fusion between Goku and Vegeta conveniently separates with no real answer behind it.
13 Why Does The Hyperbolic Time Chamber Only Come Up In The Cell Saga?
Dragon Ball Z begins to expand in a big way during the Cell Saga when the series realizes that it needs to come up with new, inventive ways for these characters to get strong through training.
Increased gravity can only go so high, after all. The advent of the Hyperbolic Time Chamber comes up, which is a room that allows two fighters to get years’ worth of training in within mere hours.
It’s a super convenient plot device, but it also would have been just as helpful in the fight against Vegeta and Nappa (even though they were a surprise) or when the team sets off for Namek.
What’s clear is that Toriyama hadn’t thought of the Time Chamber yet, but its introduction could have happened by showing it getting built.
Instead, Dende and Popo just suddenly reveal it, which is pretty suspicious.
12 Why Doesn’t Captain Ginyu Ever Try To Steal Frieza’s Body?
Captain Ginyu isn’t the strongest fighter in the Dragon Ball universe, but he does wield the ability of what is potentially the most powerful technique in the entire series.
Each member of the eponymous Ginyu Force has some sort of gimmicky ability at their disposal, but Ginyu himself is able to switch bodies with his “Change Now” technique. However, the real question here is why does he never attempt this move on Frieza?
Ginyu spends a lot of time with Frieza and the two have a genuine relationship that it seems like there would be ample opportunities for Ginyu to pull off this coup.
Ginyu spends a lot less time with Goku and he’s more than ready to steal his body, so why not do the same thing with Frieza? Respect? It doesn’t seem like Ginyu’s morals would be that strong.
11 Why Does Turles Look Identical To Goku?
The villain from the third Dragon Ball Z film, The Tree of Might, still conjures up a lot of the debate in the Dragon Ball community. Turles is one of the more memorable and popular villains from the films and he’s even found a second life in the Dragon Ball video games.
The reason that Turles resonates with so many people is because he’s an evil Saiyan who looks almost identical to Goku. The only problem with this is that there’s no explanation for why he looks just like Goku.
It’s clear that The Tree of Might just wanted to have some cool “Evil Goku” set pieces, but it would have been so simple to say that he was a long lost relative of Goku. The film describes Turles as a renegade Saiyan, but that’s not enough. Either say he has a connection to Goku or make him look different.
10 Super Speed That Never Realizes Its Potential
A series like Dragon Ball is difficult when it needs to keep making its characters stronger because the new villains need to be stronger otherwise the show stops being interesting.
Strength is one thing, but along with that comes speed, which is an area that Dragon Ball hopes that its audience doesn’t stop to take the time to think about.
Dragon Ball Z states that Gotenks flies around the Earth six times in nine seconds, which means that he clears the Earth once every 1.5 seconds.
On top of that, Goku, Vegeta, and Gohan are all allegedly stronger than him at this point, so they might be even faster or at least just as fast.
How is this phenomenal speed never put into use? It’d be so helpful, but it really just needs to be ignored in order to keep the series making sense.
9 In Dragon Ball Goku Meets The Creator Of Red Ribbon’s Androids, And It’s Not Dr. Gero
Filler in anime can sometimes be a lot of fun or it can be a genuine bummer that slows down a series. There are other times when these anime-only stories inevitably lead to contradictions down the road because they feature content that deviates away from the original manga.
There’s one such story in the original Dragon Ball where Goku meets Dr. Flappe, who introduces himself as the creator of Red Ribbon Army’s androids.
At the time, this wasn’t a problem, but it would be years later when Toriyama would return to the idea of androids in Dragon Ball Z. Dr. Gero gets introduced, who’s apparently the creator of Red Ribbon’s androids.
It’s clear that one series didn’t have the foresight that the show would return to this territory, but a line where Gero explains that Flappe was also one of his androids would have cleared up the problem.
8 King Kai Knows Instant Transmission
This charming little aside in Dragon Ball Z is clearly meant to play as a humorous moment, but it becomes a real problem when it gets pulled apart. After Goku sees King Kai again after his escape from Planet Namek, Kai has some startling news for Goku.
King Kai reveals that he also knows how to do Instant Transmission and jokes that the only reason he never taught it to Goku is because he never asked. Well, if King Kai had taught it to him, it would have saved him a lot of time and lives back during the invasion of the Saiyans.
Plus, why teach the sacred ability of the Kaio Ken Attack and not this secondhand ability? Furthermore, if this means that Instant Transmission is then teachable, why doesn’t Goku teach it to everyone and make their team even stronger?
7 Master Roshi and Fortune Teller Baba's Immortality
Both Master Roshi and his sister, Fortune Teller Baba are thousands of years old. That in itself might not make any sense, but Dragon Ball does actually offer up an answer for how these two have attained such an impossible old age.
RELATED: Dark Secrets About Master Roshi
Roshi explains that once every 1000 years he has to eat the Paradise Grass from the Forest of Terror in order to maintain this immortal existence.
This works as an explanation, but the whole idea brings in more complications than it’s worth.
For instance, why don't more villains go through this ritual to obtain the grass and become immortal, too? The fact that a child-aged Goku and Krillin are capable of completing the task shows that even someone like Raditz or Garlic Jr. would probably be able to pull this off.
Finally, why does Roshi even need to live that long when he leads a mostly lethargic lifestyle?
6 Dr. Gero Can Create Warriors Stronger Than Frieza
Up until a certain point in the Dragon Ball series, Frieza is held up as the be-all end-all villain. Everyone considers him to be the strongest warrior in the universe and he has a deadly reputation where everybody knows his name.
Frieza does pose a monumental challenge for Earth’s mightiest fighters, but apparently a mere human scientist can create warriors that are even more powerful than the notorious tyrant.
Dragon Ball ‘s Dr. Gero creates a number of androids, not to mention Cell himself, who use the DNA of the many Z Fighters. That should give Gero an advantage in his creations, but Androids 13-19 all are at least as strong as a Super Saiyan, whereas Frieza quickly crumbles to the transformed fighter.
The fact that Gero can manufacture fighters that are stronger than Frieza even means that he could have sent them to Namek to defeat him.
5 Why Does Kale’s Berserker Form Look Like Broly?
Broly might not be considered Dragon Ball “canon” since his appearances stay restricted to films, but this is why so many fans freaked out when a trailer for Dragon Ball Super appeared to feature the Legendary Super Saiyan. The content certainly got a lot of attention, but when it came to the moment of truth there was actually no Broly at all.
What instead goes down is that one of the Saiyans from Universe 6, Kale, can access a souped-up raging berserker form of herself that just looks identical to Broly. There’s no answer towards Kale’s appearance here other than it how it acts as a nice nod to the popular film character.
It’s possible that Kale is Universe 6’s Legendary Super Saiyan and this is just what all of their transformed versions look like, but the show doesn’t give any sort of push in that direction.
4 The Prevalence of Super Saiyans Later On In The Series
The privilege of a Super Saiyan used to be an extremely rare. It was a select few that included the most elite warriors like Goku and Vegeta.
However, now Dragon Ball has reached the point where practically any Saiyan that shows up in the series will become a Super Saiyan-- even children.
To begin with, Goten and Trunks become Super Saiyans at the age of seven, which is pretty bonkers. This can perhaps be looked past since they’re the children of such powerful Saiyans.
However, Dragon Ball Super introduces Kale, Caulifla, and Cabba and they all become Super Saiyans and Super Saiyans 2 with none of the trauma or anguish needed for previous Super Saiyans and they do it within hours.
They even get close to unlocking Super Saiyan 3! It’s a decision that’s all about more action, but it does do a disservice to the lore.
READ MORE: Crazy Facts About Going Super Saiyan
3 The Existence of Vegeta’s Brother, Tarble
Just when it seems like all of the missing Saiyans and long-lost relatives have shown up in Dragon Ball, there’s always one more that’s willing to come out of the woodwork. The Dragon Ball Anniversary Special, Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return!!, introduces Tarble, who apparently is Vegeta’s younger brother.
Tarble’s mere existence is fishy because he’s never been mentioned before the moment that he shows up. Vegeta is also definitely a prideful person who respects family. It would make sense then if his brother came up sometime before this point.
Tarble also has completely no aspirations for battle, which seems to be a born-in trait for Saiyans. All around Tarble is an anomaly. Even in Dragon Ball Super he continues to be missing and stay out of the picture, as he does receive a mention in Battle of Gods in regards to the Super Saiyan God ceremony.
2 2. Why Is Old Kai’s Ultimate Trump Card Called The “Z Sword?”
The Buu Saga in Dragon Ball Z goes to some surprisingly bleak places for the anime. The destructive span of episodes see many last ditch efforts get turned to, most of which still prove to ultimately be unsuccessful in taking down Majin Buu.
One solution which the Supreme Kai is hopeful will work involves Gohan unlocking the power of the mighty “Z Sword.” Gohan eventually completes the task and unlocks Old Kai in the process, but there’s never any reasoning behind why it’s called the “Z Sword.” No even blinks at the name.
It’s just rather convenient and ridiculous that in a series that’s called Dragon Ball Z the ultimate weapon is called the “Z Sword” simply because it seems cool and is a weird nod to the anime’s name. At least try to give some explanation for this decision though!
1 Piccolo Destroys The Moon
There are a lot of bonkers things to happen in Dragon Ball, but the craziest has to be when Piccolo decides to blow Earth’s moon to smithereens.
This isn’t an issue of whether Piccolo’s strong enough to pull off such a maneuver, but rather how much it would irrevocably screw up the planet that he strives to protect.
However, after Piccolo destroys the Earth’s lunar satellite, there are absolutely no repercussions at all.
It wouldn’t have exactly been fun, but it could have made for some interesting filler to see Gohan and Piccolo attempt to fix the tide and other nature problems as they scramble to recover from the aftermath of this decision.
At least when Master Roshi blew up the Earth he had enough common sense to wish it back with the Dragon Balls!
These are the various moments throughout the Dragon Ball franchise that had us scratching our heads in utter confusion, but there are any examples of nonsense that we’ve somehow overlooked? Now’s your time to raise those power levels and sound off in the comments!