3,664 Posts & 2,322 Pages Documenting Dragon Ball, since 1998. We've got you covered!
Published by 30 March 2023, 9:09 AM EDTComment

Each month, Toyotarō provides a drawing of a Dragon Ball character — as well as an accompanying comment — on the official Japanese Dragon Ball website. Following up on the wealth of characters already drawn, for his March 2023 entry, Toyotarō has contributed a drawing of Garlic Jr.:

Garlic Jr.

A character from the movies who later made the jump to the TV anime. I’d like to try drawing his transformed state sometime, too!

Garlic Jr. debuted in the first Dragon Ball Z film back in 1991 (a film that doesn’t have a title beyond just “Dragon Ball Z”…!), and appeared as the main antagonist again in a “filler arc” exclusive to the Dragon Ball Z television series.

This drawing and comment set has been added to the respective page in our “Translations” archive.

Published by 21 March 2023, 8:34 PM EDTComment

The official website for the forthcoming Sand Land animation project updated today with a short question-and-answer session with original creator Akira Toriyama, alongisde confirmation of the project being a theatrical film set for release in Japan 18 August 2023 with animation produced by Sunrise, Kamikaze Douga, and Anima.

When and how was Sand Land born?
Dragon Ball had ended, and I had tried my hand at a few different short series and one-shots, so I figured I’d draw a work that poured everything of who I was at the time into it, which I intended to be one last hurrah. Thinking back on it now, even with it being limited to a single volume’s worth of material, it was quite a feat to have drawn all that myself, without an assistant, in a weekly series. I’m amazed at it myself.

(Knowing that COWA! is number one,) are there any parts of Sand Land that you can definitively say are your favorite work?
When I draw comics myself, the contents tend to be rather plain, lightweight fluff, which doesn’t lend itself to finding an audience. The truth is that even here, I held back on the fluff, and worked hard to make it a proper, serious story. Reasonably speaking, my favorite comic should be my most recent one. Thinking back on it now, though, I do feel that, at least in terms of the quality of the art and the vitality of it, the stuff I was drawing around the time of Sand Land was incredible.

Are there any unique charms or characteristics of this work that only you yourself would know, Toriyama-sensei?
For Sand Land, I scanned the inked paper manuscripts into my computer, then using software, I did the blacking and applied tone I made myself to finish it up. I think probably got almost no sleep…. After I’d finished drawing the whole thing, I lost the wooden penholder I had been using ever since before my professional debut. That penholder was one I had whittled down here and there with a knife and sandpaper, and which had worn in perfectly to the shape of my hand through years of use. I bought a new one and tried whittling it down here and there as before, but it just didn’t feel quite right. Since then, I’ve been using it as an excuse for why I hardly ever draw comics anymore. (laughs)

How do you feel about this work being evaluated as one with your “Toriyama-sensei-ness” packed into the characters, machines, world, and story?
Certainly, that might be the case. I feel that I really ought to have given more thought to the readers, but instead, I let my own preferences take center stage. Maybe I’m not cut out to be a professional.

What do you think about its being made into a movie after 23 years?
To me, anyone who tells me that this is fun is truly a god-tier fan who really “gets” me, I suppose is how I feel.

How did you feel when you saw the current in-progress visuals?
The video I saw still had a lot of unfinished bits, but even then I could see well enough that the quality was extraordinarily high. I never dared to think it would ever be animated, so for it to have this kind of quality, it’s already a dream come true.

Toriyama’s comments are in line with his past reflections on the series — for new obi (wraparounds) produced in 2014 for manga reprints, Toriyama stated of Sand Land:

This is a man’s comic. Even reading it now, I admire how hard I worked on it. Next to COWA!, this is my favorite.

Following Dragon Ball‘s completion, Toriyama produced various one-shots and short works for Shueisha including Alien Peke and Tokimecha in 1996, and Bubul of Demon Village in 1997. Series with longer runs — serializations that would ultimately comprise a single tankōbon — were also produced, including COWA! in 1997, Kajika in 1998, and Sand Land in 2000.

Sand Land was originally serialized within the pages of Weekly Shōnen Jump in Japan from May to August 2000 spanning 14 chapters. The series was compiled into a single volume that November. Sand Land went on to act as a debut series within Viz’s Shonen Jump print magazine in America in 2003, both running to completion and receiving its own collected volume later that same year.

Published by 20 March 2023, 8:04 PM EDTComment


Episode #0499! Mike shares his Official Top Ten Dragon Ball Video Games with Kirran! With decades worth of bangers behind us and a widely-anticipated new game on the horizon, it seemed like the perfect time to purposefully get folks yelling back at their transistor radio speakers about us “forgetting” certain games! No, we didn’t forget! We just like different things!


Our podcast is available via Apple Podcasts and/or Google Podcasts, or you can pop the direct RSS feed into the program of your choice. You can also listen to this episode by directly downloading the MP3 or by streaming it on Spotify, SoundCloud, or YouTube. We invite you to discuss this episode on our forum.

Published by 19 March 2023, 12:43 PM EDTComment

Following up on previous chapters, Shueisha and Viz have added the official English translation of the Dragon Ball Super manga’s ninety-first chapter to their respective Manga Plus and Shonen Jump services, continuing onward into the brand-new “Super Hero arc”, now adapting the contents of the recent theatrical film following three chapters worth of original prologue material. Alongside other initiatives including free chapters and a larger archive for paid subscribers, this release continues the companies’ schedule of not simply simultaneously publishing the series’ chapter alongside its Japanese debut to the release date, but to its local time in Japan alongside its serialization in today’s May 2023 issue of Shueisha’s V-Jump magazine.

The Dragon Ball Super “comicalization” began in June 2015, initially just ahead of the television series, and running both ahead and behind the series at various points. The manga runs in Shueisha’s V-Jump magazine, with the series’ ninety-first chapter hitting today in the magazine’s May 2023 issue.

Illustrated by “Toyotarō” (in all likelihood, a second pen-name used by Dragon Ball AF fan manga author and illustrator “Toyble”), the Dragon Ball Super manga covered the Battle of Gods re-telling, skipped the Resurrection ‘F’ re-telling, and “charged ahead” to the Champa arc, “speeding up the excitement of the TV anime even more”. Though the television series has completed its run, the manga continues onward, moving into its own original “Galactic Patrol Prisoner”, “Granolla the Survivor”, and now “Super Hero” arcs.

Viz is currently releasing free digital chapters of the series, and began their own collected print edition back in 2017. The company’s eighteenth collected volume will be released this June.

The Dragon Ball Super television series concluded in March 2018 with 131 total episodes. Crunchyroll (by way of the merger with FUNimation) owns the American distribution license for the series, with the English dub having wrapped its broadcast on Cartoon Network, and the home video release reaching its tenth and final box set in 2020. A complete steelbook “Limited Edition” was released by Crunchyroll this past September.

Published by 12 March 2023, 2:30 PM EDTComment

Owners of 1995’s first Daizenshuu (“Complete Illustrations”) or perhaps 2013’s Dragon Ball Chōgashū: Super Art Collection may have come across an illustration of Goku riding a dragon without giving it much thought; after all, Goku rides lots of dragons in these illustrations.

Viz’s English translation of the first Daizenshuu from 2008 notes this illustration as coming from a “Never Ending Special” in Weekly Jump No. 10 (no year given, but noted as 1985 earlier in the book), describing it as: “Feature for a story called ‘Dragons Are Widely Popular in Movies and Comics!'”

Viz’s English translation of the Chōgashū — released in 2019 under the title “Dragon Ball: A Visual History” — updates this description to read: “Neverending Story Special: For the Neverending Story special collection, this piece came with the comment, ‘Dragons are super popular in both movies and manga now!'”

Older Dragon Ball fans may think first to the “Never Ending Story” two-disc soundtrack collection from 1996, but this source pre-dates that by many years and has nothing to do with music!

The illustration in question actually comes from the 1985 No. 10 issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump, originally released in Japan 18 February 1985 featuring chapter 10 of the Dragon Ball manga.

Immediately upon opening the issue, readers are greeted with a giant, five-page feature about the film The NeverEnding Story with splash text proclaiming: “From films to manga, dragons are taking the stage!” and “A Movie to Surpass E.T.: The NeverEnding Story: A Grand Adventure in a Mysterious World!”

Indeed, Toriyama’s illustration of Goku riding a dragon graces the top of the feature’s first page… alongside, lower on the page, a self-portrait (also present in the aforementioned art books) and comment from Toriyama himself!

I’m impressed at how they translated such a difficult-seeming story to screen. It’s a little bit leisurely, but I think that’s perfect for fantasy. I really enjoyed the film!

The NeverEnding Story is a 1984 film (based on a 1979 novel) about a boy who finds a magical book which tells the tale of a young warrior given the task of stopping “the Nothing” from taking over and destroying the world of Fantasia. The story and film were part of a larger multimedia craze of the day surrounding dragons and dinosaurs, and left a lasting impact in popular culture.

This comment has been archived in our “Translations” section.

Published by 07 March 2023, 10:14 AM ESTComment

The September 2021 issue of Shueisha’s Saikyō Jump magazine kicked off a “Dragon Ball Super Gallery” series in commemoration of the Dragon Ball franchise’s upcoming 40th anniversary. The celebration aims to have different artists all contribute their own spin on the original 42 tankōbon covers, with the images and an accompanying comment published as the magazine’s back cover.

Following the previous nineteen entries, this month’s April 2023 issue brings us Posuka Demizu (The Promised Neverland) and their take on the series’ 22nd volume cover:

Demizu commented:

I really liked Dende and Cargo, so I asked if I could draw the cover of volume 22! Since the events surrounding them turn out quite tragic in the main story, I drew them in a still peaceful Namek, happily going out for a ride. I’ve always wished I could draw machines as skillfully as Toriyama-sensei, something I still think nowadays (and I’m sure I will continue to do!). Congratulations on Dragon Ball‘s 40th anniversary!

Saikyō Jump is currently a monthly magazine published in Japan by Shueisha under the “Jump” line of magazines. The magazine began as a quarterly publication in 2012, went monthly in 2013, went bimonthly in late-2014, and returned to a monthly format in 2021 (including a digital release for the first time). The magazine’s focus is spin-off and supplementary manga series aimed at a young audience, while also including game promotions, news coverage, and more. The magazine currently serializes content such as Yoshitaka Nagayama’s Super Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultra God Mission!!!! manga series, Yūji Kasai’s Super Dragon Ball Heroes: Avatars!! manga series, and the Dragon Ball GT Anime Comic. For calendar year 2019, Shueisha reported Saikyō Jump‘s circulation down at 130,000, with readership as 58.5% upper elementary school, 28% lower middle school, 11% middle school, and 2.5% high school or older.

Published by 06 March 2023, 8:06 PM ESTComment

In conjunction with the “DRAGON BALL Games Battle Hour” event yesterday, Bandai Namco and their partners revealed that a new entry in the Sparking! series of Dragon Ball video games is currently in development:

No additional information — including that of a specific developer (beyond the publishing duties of Bandai Namco), a formal “number” or title for the game, etc. — were made available alongside this initial announcement.

The three Sparking! games — the original, NEO!, and METEOR — hit the PlayStation 2 over the course of 2005 to 2007, with the Nintendo Wii also receiving ports of the second and third games. The game series was released numerically under the “Budokai Tenkaichi” moniker internationally. A fourth games — Tag Vs. in Japan / Tenkaichi Tag Team internationally — was released on the PlayStation Portable in 2010.

As opposed to the completely separate Dragon Ball Z (“Budokai”) series developed by Dimps which came before it, the Sparking! series — developed instead by Spike — featured 3D arenas with an over-the-shoulder camera angle.

Spike (as Spike Chunsoft) later went on to also develop the crossover fighting games J-Stars Victory VS in 2014 and Jump Force in 2019.

In the 30th Anniversary: Dragon Ball Chōshishū –Super History Book– released in 2016, Sparking! series producer Ryō Mito reminisced about development on the series and in particular METEOR‘s reputation as not just a “God-tier game” but “a Dai Kaiōshin-tier game.”

Published by 06 March 2023, 4:58 PM ESTComment

Producer Tomoko Hiroki and the teams at Arc System Works and Bandai Namco have announced a slew of updates for Dragon Ball FighterZ coming this year:

  • Dragon Ball FighterZ will make its fourth in-person appearance at Evolution Championship Series (“Evo”) this August in Las Vegas.
  • During the Dragon Ball FighterZ World Tour 2022-23 Finals this week, it was announced that a forthcoming beta on Steam will be made available to test the previously-announced rollback netcode coming to the game for its current-generation consoles and PC release. Plans are currently set for “around spring”.
  • Also announced during the World Tour finals, Dragon Ball FighterZ will receive another forthcoming patch to further balance the game.

The 3-on-3, “2.5D” fighting game is developed by Arc System Works and is currently available on the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC (via Steam). A first “FighterZ Pass” with eight additional playable characters is available for $29.99, a “FighterZ Pass 2” available for $24.99 adding another six, and “FighterZ Pass 3” with an additional five for $19.99. Said additional paid characters are also all available piecemeal at $4.99 each.

Dragon Ball FighterZ was originally released 26 January 2018 in North America and Europe, and 01 February 2018 in Japan, across the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Alongside its Japanese release, Bandai Namco announced that they had shipped two million copies of the game, making it the fastest-shipping game in the franchise’s history. The game also shipped on the Nintendo Switch back in September 2018.

Published by 03 March 2023, 1:13 PM ESTComment

A brand-new “Serialization” page has launched within our extensive “Manga Guide,” with the goal of providing an evergreen, up-to-date page detailing all current Dragon Ball manga series in Japan.

As of the new page’s launch, these series presently include (in order of original serialization start):

  • Dragon Ball GT Anime Comic
  • Dragon Ball Super by Toyotarō
  • Super Dragon Ball Heroes: Avatars!! by Yūji Kasai
  • Super Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultra God Mission!!!! by Yoshitaka Nagayama

The guide also covers Dragon Ball SD by Naho Ooishi, which originally began serialization within the pages of Saikyo Jump in 2010 before moving to a video comic series back in 2021.

The new page complements our existing “Weekly Shōnen Jump Serialization” page, which details every issue that the original Dragon Ball series was first published in.

Published by 28 February 2023, 9:54 AM ESTComment

Each month, Toyotarō provides a drawing of a Dragon Ball character — as well as an accompanying comment — on the official Japanese Dragon Ball website. Following up on the wealth of characters already drawn, for his February 2023 entry, Toyotarō has contributed a drawing of Coola:

COOLA (Final Form)

He has a form beyond what his younger brother Freeza had, so I remember being completely astonished at the time. He’s a really cool character and I really like him.

Coola debuted in the fifth Dragon Ball Z film back in 1991 (The Incredible Strongest vs Strongest), and appeared as the main antagonist again in the sixth film the following year. Coola went on to receive minor and supporting roles across ancillary productions like Plan to Eradicate the Saiyans, and remains a fairly standard inclusion in video games.

This drawing and comment set has been added to the respective page in our “Translations” archive.