25 Things Fans Completely Missed In Dragon Ball Z

There are tons of anime out there that have caught on with American audiences and have turned into unexpected success, but none have been as successful as Dragon Ball.

Not only did the simple series turn into the first anime that many American children had ever watched, but it also opened the floodgates for other series and showed that there’s certainly an audience for these kinds of programs overseas.

It’s been decades since Dragon Ball made its debut in America and it still holds that special power over many viewers. Even today, it is still one of the most popular animation series out there.

On top of that, there is also a ton of material to look through. There are over 250 episodes in Dragon Ball Z alone.

It’s certainly easy to focus on the explosive battles, thrilling transformations, or new powerful characters and villains, and lose sight of the finer details that are intentionally stowed away in the background.

For a series that has such a rich history and lore, it’s easy to completely misee subtle callbacks and connections to previous material until vigilant fans uncover them. Even if people have watched Dragon Ball in its entirety several times over, it’s still easy to discover new secrets for the first time.

Accordingly, here are 25 Things Fans Completely Missed In Dragon Ball Z!

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Dragon Ball Z Goku Beats Yakon
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25 Goku Only Destroys Two Characters Throughout The Entire Series

Dragon Ball Z Goku Beats Yakon

Goku is unquestionably the star of every Dragon Ball series, but when it actually comes down to the math and the hard numbers of who accomplishes what, Goku’s achievements in Dragon Ball Z are laughable.

Everyone knows that Goku is a chivalrous character who likes to give enemies a second chance, but it’s ridiculous that he only destroys two characters in all of Dragon Ball Z.

Furthermore, they’re somewhat surprising enemies that aren’t the most obvious victims.

Yakon, who is one of Babidi’s minions from his spaceship, is the first character that Goku claims the life of in Dragon Ball Z.

Yakon eats light for strength and Goku pushes this ability to its limit until Yakon explodes from Goku’s Super Saiyan 2 energy. The second enemy that Goku destroys is Kid Buu, and even then it’s because the absolute fate of the planet is on the line.

Even Frieza, Goku’s ultimate rival, doesn’t get taken down by his hand.

It’s also interesting to point out that on top of all of this, Goku doesn’t defeat a single Android— Cell included— either. Goku might always get the spotlight, but when it comes down to results, someone like Vegeta actually gets the job done and his hands dirty a lot more often.

24 There Were Androids Before The Android Saga

Dragon Ball Android 8 Cradles Young Goku

The Android Saga (and the accompanying Cell Saga) marks a very exciting time for Dragon Ball Z. For one thing, fans were just happy that the lengthy fight with Frieza was finally over, but the series also introduces a fascinating new set of villains who expand the series in a very big way.

Dr. Gero and his androids are terrifying villains who won many people over because they’re designed to be dangerous machines. This is a lot more threatening than some human who decides to turn to the dark side.

They also wouldn’t be susceptible to the same weaknesses that humans suffer from. The Androids were so successful as characters that Androids 18 and 17 both stayed in on the show in varying capacities.

What many people don’t realize, though, is that this interesting creation was actually introduced much earlier in the original Dragon Ball.

During Goku’s younger years, he takes down the villainous Red Ribbon Army. Within the evil headquarters, Goku encounters Android 8 and Major Metallitron, both of whom prove that Androids were in production much earlier than the Cell days.

Furthermore, the Androids in Dragon Ball seem to come from a Dr. Flappe, not Dr. Gero, which is a whole other topic, but presumably they could have been partners.

Regardless, Goku should be a little savvier about these metallic threats since he definitely has experience with their kind.

23 The Destructo Disc Is The Strongest Move In The Series

Dragon Ball Krillin Destruco Disc

In a lot of ways Krillin is the eternal underdog in Dragon Ball. It’s surprising to think that he enters the shows as a rival to Goku.

There are even moments during their training with Master Roshi that Krillin even manages to gain the upper hand over Goku. As the Dragon Ball series has gone on, Krillin’s abilities and strength level have become less impressive in comparison to the other characters.

To Krillin’s defense, he’s been much happier settling down and focusing on his family and he does get to return to battle in Dragon Ball Super and do Universe 7 proud at the Tournament of Power.

Krillin may get picked on, but most fans often forget that he actually has the strongest move in the entire series.

Dragon Ball Z explains that the Destructo Disc can literally cut through anything and the only real contradiction of this is that it’s unable to cut through Perfect Cell.

It should be noted that this happens in a filler episode of the anime, but even if it’s taken as canon, that’s still pretty impressive.

The attack comes up so infrequently that it’s true strength is often overlooked. It’s honestly surprising that Goku and Vegeta haven’t begged Krillin to teach it to them because they could really dominate their enemies with the attack at their disposal.

At the least, this should put the eternal debates of “Who’s the strongest human?” to rest.

22 Vegeta Has A Brother

Dragon Ball Tarble With Bulma Launch

Dragon Ball has proven time and time again that of the many unique races that appear in the series, the one that they’re most interested in developing is the Saiyan race.

Saiyans wield incredible potential, but after the destruction of Planet Vegeta, there are only so many remaining Saiyans left.

At this point, it’s basically Goku and Vegeta who are left and are doing their Saiyan race any justice. So on that note, it should be a pretty big deal when a new Saiyan shows up.

However, in the Dragon Ball Z reunion special, Vegeta just casually mentions that he has a younger brother as if it should be common knowledge and we’ve seen him a hundred times.

Yo! Son Goku and His Friends Return!! sees Tarble (as well as some pesky aliens, Avo and Cado) make a late, unexpected appearance out of nowhere.

Tarble also leaves right after this appearance, so it’s easy to miss the fact that Vegeta has any living siblings still around.

Tarble does come up when the team needs Saiyans during the Super Saiyan God ceremony, but other than that, he’s been absent. It is kind of cute that both Vegeta and his brother’s name collectively form the word “Vegetable.” They must have loved that growing up.

21 The Japanese Government Co-Funded A Dragon Ball Z Movie

Dragon Ball Battle of Gods Beerus Versus Super Saiyan God Goku

When Battle of Gods was announced, a lot of fans went crazy because it finally meant some new Dragon Ball content. It was also coming straight from the man in charge.

Battle of Gods is one of the lengthiest and most successful Dragon Ball movies. Part of this is due to the nostalgia that it plays into, but the other reason is that it looks so impressive.

The animation in Battle of Gods is a real triumph, and while this movie probably would have happened regardless, it’s always a lot easier when there’s a considerable financial backer to help out. In the case of Battle of Gods, it was the Japanese government.

UNIJAPAN is a non-profit organization that was put together by the Japanese movie industry. However, it falls under the supervision of Japan’s government.

UNIJAPAN is meant to support the effort of Japanese filmmakers at an international level. That year, four projects got financial support, but Battle of Gods was the only animated movie to make the cut.

TOEI Animation got 50 million yen (a little more than $600,000) from them. Efforts like this probably helped make the dub a whole lot easier (although it was surely always on the table).

It’s always nice to have this sort of support in your corner and perhaps the Japanese government will continue to support Dragon Ball movies in the future, too.

20 General Tao Returns

Dragon Ball Cyborg General Tao

Dragon Ball is a series that’s known for its creative, unique villains just as much as its known for its many ridiculous transformations.

During the series’ infancy in its Dragon Ball days, the show is much more grounded. In response to this, the villains are a lot more normal, too.

One of the first real exciting, dynamic villains to come out of the series is General Tao. This is a character whose primary mode of transportation is throwing a tree and riding it to his next location.

General Tao is a challenge for Goku during his younger days, but the Red Ribbon member also reappears in Dragon Ball Z to great effect.

General Tao’s cybernetic form returns during the Cell Saga and he goes through a bit of an existential crisis when he runs into Goku again, as well as his child.

It’s easy to miss this one-off appearance, but it’s some great fan service. This character has so much personality that he wouldn’t have been out of place in Dragon Ball Super as a Tournament of Power contender. He definitely could have put up as much of a fight as Roshi or Tien.

Many more of the Red Ribbon Army also return in Dragon Ball GT, when there’s a “jailbreak” in Hell and all of the villains get loose, which is also easy to miss because not many fans watched it.

19 Otokosuki And His Man Love In The 28th World Martial Arts Tournament

Dragon Ball Otokosuki Tournament

Dragon Ball always feels reinvigorated when it turns to a big tournament for a wide stretch of episodes. There are all sorts of reasons for tournaments to crop up throughout the series, many of which see the fate of the universe on the line.

However, some of the most entertaining entries are the humble World Martial Arts Tournaments that are simply for bragging rights. Back in the original Dragon Ball, these tournaments were as big as it got, but they still hold a certain significance and will forever bee a tradition throughout the series.

One of the big advantages of these tournaments is that they allow a number of unusual characters to enter and then quickly exit the picture.

At the same time, more interesting fighters, like Pikkon, can be introduced, but it’s a big opportunity to throw some bizarre joke characters into the fray.

One of the most unusual examples of this happens in Dragon Ball Z’s 28th World Martial Arts Tournament, where a rather blatantly offensive gay stereotype makes advances on Trunks.

The character in question is named Otokosuki, which literally translates to “man love” in Japanese. Furthermore, this guy appears in both the manga and the anime, which is a little surprising.

18 The Existence Of Grand Kai

Dragon Ball Grand Kai

Dragon Ball deciding to expand its universe is truly a double-edged sword. It’s certainly an understandable decision, as the series needs to continue to build suspense and increase its stakes as its characters become more powerful.

However, at the same time, it’s also easy for this growing world to lead to inconsistencies or characters who awkwardly exit the picture because they suddenly contradict a later development in the show.

Dragon Ball is actually surprisingly careful with this sort of stuff, but it's still not perfect. For instance, the area of the Kais and the various rungs of power between them all is ripe for contradiction. This is where Grand Kai comes into the picture.

Grand Kai appears in Goku’s second Other World Tournament during his tenure in the afterlife. In spite of Grand Kai’s immense power (he’s in charge of the four regular Kais), he takes on a very chill appearance and demeanor. He wouldn’t be out of place at a Grateful Dead concert.

After this tournament, the Grand Kai is never brought up again once Supreme Kai and Old Kai enter the picture.

Grand Kai is basically erased and replaced by these characters, so it’s easy to miss or forget this odd deity. It still would have been nice if he was just seen chilling out on the Planet of the Kais.

Dragon Ball could have worked him in somehow-- he could be retired now.

17 Krillin's A Fan Of One Piece

Dragon Ball Resurrection F Krillin Phone Call

The characters in Dragon Ball are so caught up with saving the world and fighting off enemies that the series doesn’t really devote much attention to what they do in their downtime (although it does happen on occasion).

It’s still thrilling to see Goku and company defeat a new bad guy, but it would also be nice to see these characters come home after a grueling fight and just relax in front of the television like real people do.

That then raises the question of what television shows or anime these characters would be fans of. It’s certainly hard to make this prediction for a lot of characters.

It’s also unclear what shows even exist in the Dragon Ball universe. That being said, one major hint is dropped in regard to Krillin’s taste in anime.

In the Dragon Ball Z movie, Resurrection ‘F,’ Krillin gets a phone call and his ringtone is the opening theme from One Piece, “We Are!”

This is definitely a joke about how Krillin's Japanese voice actor, Mayumi Tanaka, is also the voice of Luffy in One Piece, but it still means that these shows are connected somehow.

This is also an easy “crossover” of sorts because One Piece and Dragon Ball are both TOEI Animation properties. Who knows, maybe Vegeta is a Digimon fan?

16 Gohan Was Supposed To Eventually Be The Main Character

Dragon Ball Z Intro Gohan Bike

It’s tough to be a Gohan fan in the Dragon Ball fandom. The character starts off with incredible promise and he’s even temporarily the strongest character that the series has to offer.

In spite of these minor moments in the spotlight, though, Gohan unfortunately not only loses his leading man status, but he practically becomes a joke in the Dragon Ball universe. It’s more than a little disappointing.

Right from the start of Dragon Ball Z, the hidden potential of Gohan has been at the forefront. Gohan becomes the first character to become a Super Saiyan 2.

The intention here was for the series to continue with Gohan replacing his father after his passing.

The start of this plan can be seen by how Gohan defeats Cell. The new opening credits for the Buu Saga are also all about Gohan, with Goku only making a cameo appearance.

Sadly, the plan changes and despite the triumph of Mystic Gohan, the series still decides to make Goku its eternal champion.

It’s fascinating to watch the opening credits for Dragon Ball Z Kai’s Buu Saga, as it puts Goku front and center with Gohan in the background, as it’s now aware of Gohan’s sad fall from grace.

15 Bulma Has A Sister

Dragon Ball Tights Bulmas Sister

The Briefs are one of the more interesting families in all of Dragon Ball. They’re not only some of the smartest people on Earth, but they also appear to be some of the richest.

The Briefs carry a certain quirkiness to them, and while it’s often looked like Bulma is the soul heir of her parents’ legacy, Dragon Ball Super actually introduces a sister that’s apparently always been in the picture.

Curiously, Bulma’s sister, Tights, actually makes her first appearance in the Jaco the Galactic Patrolman spin-off manga. It’s interesting to see that both Bulma and Tights take a shining to Jaco and have a special relationship with him.

Tights then returns a few times throughout Dragon Ball Super, but she never plays a very crucial role.

The character also makes an appearance during the Future Trunks/Goku Black saga in the Dragon Ball Suepr manga, which does not happen in the anime, so who knows if she’ll continue to make more appearances throughout the manga’s run.

With the unfortunate recent passing of Bulma’s Japanese voice actress, it would have been an interesting strategy if Tights replaced the character, but that’s not the direction that was taken, and Bulma is still very much in the picture.

14 The Bizarre "What If?" Scenario Where Cell Absorbs Krillin

Dragon Ball Z Budokai Cellin Fusion

The Dragon Ball video games carry a murky reputation for some of the liberties that they take with their storytelling.

The series has such a rich universe that it’s really more fun to just be open to creative takes on the characters rather than being overly critical of it all. Some Dragon Ball video games do have regrettable storylines, but a lot of them offer up something original and take the material to places that are just as exciting as anything from the anime.

Dragon Ball Z: Budokai offers up some "What If?" alternate scenarios to help add some more stories to the game, and it gets quite creative in the process.

There are some typical alternate histories that are present, like “What if Vegeta beat the Z Fighters in the Saiyan Saga and became a Super Saiyan?” or “What if Frieza defeated Goku and took over Earth?”

However, the weirdest involves Cell experiencing a nightmare where he accidentally absorbs Krillin and becomes so weak that he loses in a match against Tien and Yamcha.

It's such an unusual, comical direction for the game to go and it's hard to believe that it's real, but it, and "Cellin," are completely legit.

If any storyline from the video games was to get turned into a one-shot special, this is one that deserves it.

13 That One Time Krillin Breaks The Fourth Wall

Dragon Ball Z Manga Krillin Toriyama Meta

Dragon Ball has a very friendly reputation with its audience, but it’s not exactly the most meta, self-referential anime that’s out there.

There are many anime out there that are all about breaking the fourth wall and having fun with the boundaries between show and audience, but Dragon Ball is more into its super powered showdowns.

However, his doesn’t mean that the show can’t ever get meta. In fact, it has broken the fourth wall before, when Krillin makes a shocking reference.

In Dragon Ball Z’s manga during the Buu saga, there is a section where Krillin watches Goten and Trunks attempt the fusion dance and go through their dance lessons.

There are three panels in the manga that are identical to one another and are all sequential. This is clearly an attempt to save time, but then the manga cleverly addresses what’s happened in order to save face.

After these three re-used panels, Krillin calls Toriyama out on his laziness and acknowledges the fact that he's in a manga.

Toriyama even appears and responds. This is pretty unexpected, but Vegeta also does a very similar thing in Dragon Ball Super when Toriyama’s Arale from Dr. Slump appears and he outright addresses her indestructible “gag character” status.

12 The Many Familiar Characters Who Escape From Hell In Fusion Reborn

Dragon Ball Z Fusion Reborn Frieza Villains Escaped

The Dragon Ball movies are all a lot of fun ,and even though they technically might not be part of the anime’s canon, they typically present an interesting new villain and at least one new exciting fight sequence.

These movies also have a looser tone a lot of the time and aren’t afraid to go to some ridiculous places, since everything will all be resolved by the end of the limited runtime.

Each movie takes some liberties in different ways, but some of the biggest gambles are taken with the twelfth Dragon Ball Z movie, Fusion Reborn.

There’s a segment in Fusion Reborn where the barrier between Hell and the real world is broken and chaos breaks loose. It should be no surprise that many deceased villains take this opportunity to escape back to the land of the living while they have the chance.

However, the movie gets particularly creative with all of this. There’s a lot of welcome fan service here, as many old villains from the show’s history re-appear and can be seen in the background.

What’s even more surprising, though, are the real-life villains who somehow manage to cross over, like “The Dictator,” who looks suspiciously similar to a certain World War II ruler (in the dub, he even makes reference to how he’s a fan of Super Saiyan 3 Gotenks’ blonde hair and blue eyes. It is… problematic).

Thankfully everyone gets sent back to their proper purgatory by the end of the movie.

11 Future Trunks’ Hair Gets Retconned To Blue

Dragon Ball Super Future Trunks Young Trunks

At the end of the day, how important is a character’s hair? If warriors can be named after ridiculous things like vegetables or breads, then shouldn’t their hair be inconsequential?

Furthermore, anime is the birthplace of the some of the most outrageous, unbelievable hair styles that are out there. Vegeta or Raditz certainly play into anime’s ridiculous relationship with hair.

However, when it comes to Future Trunks, the issue isn’t the style of his hair, but rather it’s color.

When Future Trunks makes his memorable debut in Dragon Ball Z, he enters the scene with purple hair. The rationale here was perhaps that the synthesis between Bulma’s blue hair and Vegeta’s black hair results in Trunks’ purple locks.

However, when Future Trunks returns in Dragon Ball Super, his hair is suddenly blue (and yet young Trunks’ hair inexplicably remains purple).

Mistakes like this aren’t that unusual, but Super goes one step further, and any Dragon Ball Z flashback that comes up changes Trunks’ hair to blue so there’s at least no inconsistencies within Super.

Due to all of this, it seems to be that canon dictates that Future Trunks’ hair is blue and not purple.

Maybe when young Trunks turns eighteen, his hair will suddenly change colors or maybe when he returns from being a Super Saiyan one time he’ll just magically have blue hair and it’s never brought up again.

10 Goku Doesn’t Know What Kissing Is

Dragon Ball Goku Chi Chi Kiss Confusion

Nobody disputes the fact that Goku is exceptionally strong. In fact, out of all of Dragon Ball’s main characters, he’s likely the strongest one who of all of them.

Goku has plenty of strength, but the series doesn’t shy away from opportunities where it can point out Goku’s naivety and boneheaded nature.

In fact, it’s been a major plot point at times that Goku’s strength has been useless because he’s rushed into battle without putting in the proper amount of thought and then faces the consequences.

At this point, everyone knows to look out for Goku in this department, and typically other people are put in charge of planning the strategies, while Goku gets to execute them.

Goku’s ignorance and naivety is pushed to some truly shocking levels outside of the battlefield when the topics of marriage and reproduction are in discussion.

There are several moments where Goku is completely oblivious when it comes to romance. He goes so far as to tell Vegeta that he doesn’t know what kissing is.

Goku’s lack of romantic feelings is pushed to extremely comical levels, but this is going pretty far. The guy has kids, after all.

Does he just turn off the light, perform some martial arts moves, and hope for the best? Maybe the whole reason why Chi-Chi seems irritated all of the time is because Goku isn’t giving her nearly enough affection.

9 The Battle Of Gods Promo Art Where Android 18 Has Purple Hair

Dragon Ball Battle Of Gods Promo Purple Haired Android 18

Akira Toriyama has planned out some inspiring sagas for his stories and he usually brings something new to his character designs.

Despite the fact that Toriyama is responsible for some true classics in both anime and video games, his memory isn’t always the best. It must be difficult to keep track of every single character when you’ve got your toes dipped in so much content.

It’s also pretty funny that Dragon Ball fans have a better recall for character details than the series' own creator.

Toriyama has gone on the record to say that he even needs to write down specific character touches otherwise he won’t be able to keep track of them all.

Some of the most notorious examples of this are when Toriyama confused Super Saiyan 3 with Super Saiyan 2, as well as when Launch exited the series because Toriyama simply forgot that she existed.

While far less egregious than the above examples, Toriyama’s absent memory was recently on display with the promo materials that were sent out for the Battle of Gods feature movie.

In one particular promo shot that went out, Android 18 is seen with purple hair, which clearly is a mistake.

Toriyama gets his details straight in the actual movie, but it’s still an unusual mistake. For what it’s worth, though, Android 18 doesn’t look bad with purple hair.

8 The Battle Between Goku And Frieza Lasts For 19 Episodes

Dragon Ball Super Saiyan Goku Vs Frieza Namek

It’s become a long-running joke not only in the Dragon Ball community, but also in the larger anime community in general, that the fight between Goku and Frieza is way too drawn out.

It’s easy to make jokes that Dragon Ball spends too much time on scenes of its characters powering up and that fights go on longer than they need to, but series like Digimon or Sailor Moon are actually much more gratuitous with their transformation sequences.

However, the big Goku versus Frieza fight plays into Dragon Ball’s worst impulses and there are episodes pretty much solely consist of the characters charging up.

Many people know that this big fight goes on longer than it needs to, but most don’t realize that the fight actually lasts 19 episodes.

This is quite ridiculous, and towards the end of the fight, the excuses used to explain prolonging the battle are truly embarrassing.

Admittedly, the anime needs to wait for the manga to finish so it’s able to continue, but there are ways to do this that don't involve adding in such a lengthy fight.

This also makes it the longest fight from the entire series until Dragon Ball Super’s final arc turns into one huge tournament. Thankfully, when Golden Frieza faces off against Goku and company, it’s only a fraction of the length of their original fight.

7 Super Saiyan Transformation Was Made To Save Time For Artists

Dragon Ball Z Manga Super Saiyan Goku Vs Vegeta

It’s fair to say that most Dragon Ball fans would say that one of the most satisfying moments from the entire series is when Goku goes Super Saiyan for the first time.

It’s a pivotal moment in the series and it’s such a strong scene that it’s not exactly surprising to see why Dragon Ball would go all in on the idea and become primarily interested in new fancy transformations.

The whole Super Saiyan appearance may look really cool, and it’s a nice departure from the typical dark-haired look of Saiyans, but the reason for this new appearance is actually a result of laziness.

Toriyama and company loved drawing Goku, Vegeta, and the rest of the Saiyans, but it soon began to turn into quite an exhausting endeavor.

All of these full panels of black-haired Saiyans means a whole lot of ink, which ultimately slows down the status of the manga. A clever solution to this was reached with the idea that the hair of Saiyans would turn blonde/golden when they become Super Saiyans.

This takes drastically less time to draw. Fights become increasingly dominated by Super Saiyans as the series goes on, so it’s a choice that really pays off and allows Toriyama to spend time on other things.

6 The Series Has Different Intros Based On Its Region

Dragon Ball Z Canadian Rock The Dragon Intro

Anime that run for a long time often have several different opening and closing themes that compliment the various sagas or story arcs that take place in the show.

Each Dragon Ball series gets at least a few different credit sequences, but Dragon Ball Z gets the most.

Each different sequence is satisfying in a different way and it’s refreshing to see that the Dragon Ball Z Kai re-master also features entirely new opening and closing credits rather than just re-doing what was present in the original Dragon Ball Z.

Dragon Ball Z has many different credit sequences from Japan alone, but this anime in particular features a number of different introductions depending on which region’s dub is in question.

It makes sense that an anime’s dub would have a different intro than the original Japanese version (especially back in the infancy of dubbed anime in the early ‘90s), but Dragon Ball Z goes one step further.

The Canadian, American, and French versions all feature different, yet similar, introductions. This is definitely unnecessary and no other dubs have such a plentiful amount of extraneous introductions, but it likely speaks to the popularity of Dragon Ball Z, even in its early days.

5 Akira Toriyama’s Other Series Make Cameo Appearances

Dragon Ball Super Goku Arale

Crossovers are a tricky territory for not only anime, but for anything. Sometimes they can be done amazingly (Infinity War is currently breaking every box office record in history), but if they’re not properly thought-out, they can feel like a manipulative insult to fans of both properties.

Accordingly, crossovers should be approached with the right amount of respect and hesitation. Akira Toriyama shows a good degree of restraint in this area, but even he is not immune to indulging and letting his worlds playfully come together and interact.

Arale from Toriyama’s Dr. Slump shows up a few times in Dragon Ball and she always makes a pretty big impression on the world.

The cute, yet powerful character usually beats up whoever’s in her path and acts like the perfect, unassuming ally for Goku.

Furthermore, Dragon Ball deals with androids on a regular basis, so the fact that Arale isn’t human doesn’t suddenly break the logic of the series. If anything, it enriches it.

In Dragon Ball Super, Arale beats both Goku and Super Saiyan Blue Vegeta, too. Dragon Ball characters have also appeared in Dr. Slump and Goku even does a three-episode arc in the show that involves the Red Ribbon Army.

4 The Nintendo's Dragon Power Game Is Actually A Dragon Ball Title

Nintendo Dragon Power Game

Dragon Ball video games are now a regular thing in the gaming community and the latest title, Dragon Ball FighterZ, is arguably the most popular title that the series has seen in a long time.

The popularity of Dragon Ball and the nature of the series make video game adaptations a no-brainer, but there was actually a time where Dragon Ball video games were a rarity and options were basically non-existent.

Many fans likely remember renting Dragon Ball GT: Final Bout out of desperation on the PlayStation, but were still just happy to have some kind of Dragon Ball game at their disposal.

Well ,technically a US Dragon Ball game actually came out all the way back on the Nintendo, only Bandai didn’t have the license for the property in the US, so some “creative” changes had to be made.

The result was a game called Dragon Power that had been altered just enough so that it didn't resemble Dragon Ball, but so that all of the DNA was still there.

All of the copyright-infringing sprites are swapped and changed just enough to be different (Dragon Balls become Crystal Balls, Kamehameha Wave becomes Wind Wave, Roshi and Bulma's underwear become a Wizard and sandwiches, etc).

Dragon Power is not a satisfying Dragon Ball game, but it remains an interesting relic that’s still worth seeking out for the novelty alone.

3 Master Roshi Had A Mermaid Girlfriend

Dragon Ball Master Roshi Mermaid

Master Roshi has played a pivotal role in Goku’s education as a fighter and if it wasn’t for him, Gooku wouldn’t even know his signature attack, the Kamehameha.

In spite of Roshi’s influence on both Goku and the series as a whole, the character has always been problematic to some degree, as he’s meant to represent the most exaggerated clichés of creepy old men.

Accordingly, Roshi is happy to offer his training expertise to eager fighters, but he always has “unusual” requests.

When Universe 7 prepares for the Tournament of Power in Dragon Ball Super, Roshi even goes through specific training to restrain him of his instincts and “cure” him of this affliction. After this, Roshi becomes an even stronger warrior, but it’s hard to believe that this classic character has completely changed.

One of the more unusual events that have resulted from Roshi’s more carnal instincts sees a young Goku and Krillin trying to complete a number of trials for their mentor.

As a test, Krillin brings the Turtle Master magazines, but Goku brings him an actual girl, who turns out to be a mermaid of all things.

Roshi is unimpressed for certain anatomy reasons, but you’d think that they’d make a bigger deal about this discovery. Maybe she could have been a powerful ally in battle with the proper training. They should have at least tried to teach her the Kamehameha.

2 The Contradictions Around The Origin Story Of Trunks’ Sword

Dragon Ball Z Young Trunks Gets Sword Tapion

Trunks’ sword is one of the character’s coolest details, but it’s also surprisingly one of the most controversial. This simple blade has turned into a source for many contradictions, and the true origin of Trunks’ sword remains shrouded in a certain degree of mystery.

Young Trunks acquires his trademark "Brace Sword" by Tapion in the 13th Dragon Ball Z movie, Wrath of the Dragon.

Trunks goes on to use this sword in Dragon Ball GT when he's grown up and it looks like he "fulfills his destiny." This seems reasonable, but it doesn't really line up with Future Trunks' timeline.

Then, to make matters worse, young Trunks nearly gets a sword courtesy of Monaka's delivery company in Dragon Ball Super, so is that his future sword or is it the one from Tapion?

There are many sword origin stories out there for the character and until the series is forced to reveal which is canon, it’ll likely keep it loose.

What’s clear here, though, is that the series knows that people like the idea of a sword for Trunks’ weapon of choice.

Young Trunks may never comfortably wield a sword around, but it’d be quite entertaining to see the child’s take on the weapon. Plus, it would totally give the kid something to gloat to Goten about and isn’t that what it’s really all about?

1 The Punny Character Names, Particularly Saiyans

Dragon Ball Super Saiyan God Ceremony Shocked

Dragon Ball is a series that often puts the fate of the Earth at stake and depicts countless dangerous battles where lives get lost for the greater good.

For such serious subject matter, it would make sense for the characters’ names to reflect that same level of drama, but instead Dragon Ball decided to get silly when it came to character naming.

In Akira Toriyama’s defense, names are hard to come up with, and at the end of the day, are they really that important? It’s hard to say if anyone has given up on a program because the characters’ names were too ridiculous, but Toriyama gets his inspiration from some very unusual, mundane places.

Most of the Dragon Ball characters have names that tie into some sort of theme, like how Demon King Piccolo’s children are all named after instruments and the underwear puns in Bulma’s family.

Even the members in Goku’s family have names that make reference to bread and rice.

However, the most prevalent one is that Saiyans appear to be named after vegetables. Kakarot (Carrot), Raditz (Radish), Vegeta (Vegetable), Broly (Broccoli), and Paragus (Asparagus) are all notorious examples.

Dragon Ball Super kept the tradition going with Kale, Caulifla, and Cabba. It’s an odd touch, but there’s definitely no shortage of vegetables out there. Perhaps “Turnip the Missing Saiyan” isn’t far behind.


Can you think of any other things that most fans completely missed in Dragon Ball Z? Sound off in the comments!

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