Kai or Z?

Discussion specifically regarding the "refreshed" TV version of DBZ created in Japan for its 20th anniversary, including individual threads for each episode.

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Cipher
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Cipher » Tue Aug 18, 2015 5:07 pm

Well, I've been finishing the original broadcast of Kai for the first time recently (I've had the Blu-Rays for a while, but am only now finishing the last half of the Cell arc), and I have to say that even in its post-Namek arc portions, there's still a lot to recommend. For one, the remaster remains beautiful. I love the color palette they leaned toward, and really -- while it does look like old footage somewhat softened for noise -- I think it's still the best the Z footage has ever looked (I'll take arguments for the Dragon Box here, and it's close, but ultimately I slightly prefer Kai).

The cuts are also fairly well done. If it weren't for changes in art/animation style indicating a switch in episodes form the original Z, I don't think I'd be able to tell anything had been cut, which speaks to how superfluous some of the Z material must be (and while I love a lot of the stand-alone filler in Z, I'm kind of baffled at what could be missing from the middle of, say, Vegeta vs. Cell that was so important). And while it still has to deal with some of the artifacts of taking cues from old footage and the ways that dictates its pacing, they're rather artful about it. We get more quiet fades to black than we ever got in Z, which I think actually works well for the series. And differently from how I remembered it, not every episode adheres to commercial-break or episode-endings from Z for its own endings -- they're pretty clever about finding a spot in the middle of what would have been a normal scene in Z and using it for an ending. Those snappier endings (more in line with how Super is doing things now) and the mercifully short recaps (how were Z's up to two minutes long sometimes when these give us everything important so quickly?) are welcome changes. Each episode manages to feel like a full meal here, which both weirdly makes it harder to marathon, but also seems like how a series should work.

I can't fully endorse it over Z, if only because Z's more wholly in control of its content, I love, love some of its additions and I think its music is better utilized from the android arc on (I think Kikuchi's selection of tracks in Z up until the end of the Freeza arc is some of the drabbest material Dragon Ball's ever had, so the introduction of Cell-arc tracks there, even at the expense of establishing leitmotifs, is welcome). But I'm really enjoying Kai and can see someone preferring it. I think it'll be my go-to for most rewatches in the future, though I think I might still lean toward Z for introducing someone else to the series (except for the Namek arc, which is terrible there).

To clarify: I've been watching the entire series with Japanese audio and the Kikuchi score (the placement of which is nowhere as bad as it's made out to be, although to be fair these would have been some of the last episodes to be rescored, as far as I know).

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by ekrolo2 » Thu Aug 20, 2015 9:23 am

The Buu Saga was always the sore thumb shit stain of the franchise so I'm not surprised even Kai failed to make it even remotely watchable. Overall I'd have to take Kai regardless of that, sure I miss the Faulconer score but the faster pace, better voice acting for the dub and kick ass music from both Yamamoto & Kikuchi for Kai 1.0 really makes it a worthwhile product.
Last edited by ekrolo2 on Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Lord Beerus » Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:27 am

ekrolo2 wrote:The Buu Saga was always the sore thumb shit stain of the franchise so I'm not surprised even Kai managed to make it even remotely watchable.
Really? I thought that honor belonged to GT according to the fandom.

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by ekrolo2 » Thu Aug 20, 2015 11:51 am

Lord Beerus wrote:
ekrolo2 wrote:The Buu Saga was always the sore thumb shit stain of the franchise so I'm not surprised even Kai managed to make it even remotely watchable.
Really? I thought that honor belonged to GT according to the fandom.
GT for me was a breath of fresh air, odd considering how it re-used the structure of DB and Z, though tbf Z re-used its own structure every arc as well. I really liked the humor, especially Goku getting kidnapped by a couple guys after becoming a kid, having a bad guy with a genuine excuse to hate the good guys in Baby and the Dragon Balls turning on everyone with the Shadow Dragons. The only arc I'd say is bad in GT is Super 17. Even then its not insultingly boring as the Buu Saga.
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Ree » Tue Sep 01, 2015 8:03 pm

Z had some good filler but Kai is faster...
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Kuririn Fan » Sun Sep 06, 2015 2:05 pm

Kai, but they kinda messed up the Majin Boo arc...

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by jamiljamtheman » Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:02 am

I watched Kai up until like halfway through the Frieza battle (without having seen Z), but I stopped because I was impatient with it feeling pretty drawn out even there. When I watched the Saiyan Saga of Z later (I haven't seen beyond that yet), I found I enjoyed pretty much everything that Kai had cut out from it except for the Gohan-and-the-orphans episode...sure Kai is closer to the manga, but the filler was still fun to me. What is it about the Z Namek and Frieza sagas that makes it worse than Kai's? Because Frieza's "5 minutes" still took forever in Kai >.> (That's where I stopped)

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by SaiyamanMS » Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:15 am

jamiljamtheman wrote:What is it about the Z Namek and Freeza sagas that makes it worse than Kai's? Because Freeza's "5 minutes" still took forever in Kai >.> (That's where I stopped)
The "5 minutes" definitely should have been cut down more in Kai. But it's still only half the length it was in Dragon Ball Z.

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by ABED » Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:51 am

SaiyamanMS wrote:
jamiljamtheman wrote:What is it about the Z Namek and Freeza sagas that makes it worse than Kai's? Because Freeza's "5 minutes" still took forever in Kai >.> (That's where I stopped)
The "5 minutes" definitely should have been cut down more in Kai. But it's still only half the length it was in Dragon Ball Z.
The five minutes is still long in the manga and there's only so much cutting you can do before the pacing of individual scenes suffer. I'll take a longer five minutes over rushed scenes.
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by jamiljamtheman » Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:12 pm

ABED wrote: The five minutes is still long in the manga and there's only so much cutting you can do before the pacing of individual scenes suffer. I'll take a longer five minutes over rushed scenes.
I understand what you mean, and I think since Kai wasn't a complete remake with all new footage they did the best they could with it. I still became annoyed that the long '5 minutes' was full of Goku and Freeza having a staring contest with the occasional short skirmish. Granted, I may have become impatient at a point where if I continued the fighting might have actually gotten more intense... I'll find out for myself when I get around to seeing more of original Z. :thumbup:

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Kuririn Fan » Sat Sep 12, 2015 3:12 am

Ok, i changed my mind - i still prefer the good ol' Z. Yeah, it has a lot of filler, but i enjoyed all of it...

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by ShaneisMC » Sat Sep 12, 2015 3:34 am

After having watched all the dragon boxes I still feel the same pretty much. I dont really see it as a one or the other thing in a particular aspect. Personally I am perfectly content watching either Japanese Z or English Kai. I have both of them more or less on equal ground. I love them both. Japanese Kai is perfectly watchable as well though clearly in certain aspects most certainly a step backwards from the original. Honestly only original english Z at this point do i see as just unbearable.

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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by coola » Sat Sep 12, 2015 7:23 am

One of main reasons i put original series over Kai, is how excellent music match the scene, despite said music being written with different scene in mind, it still matches character movements, or how scene goes
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjxSXAcr3Bw
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jLTF8kPUF_c
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lS5zTB-zAnA
It really pains me to see, what sound directors did in Kai, it literally make my inner fanboy rage, to see such great music poorly written in, i don't know if it was result of rush job, having to replace music fast, after Yamamoto mess, and i honestly don't care, i watched few Kai epsiodes with Kikuchi music, and i was so sad... i really hope Kai won't take place of DB/DBZ, now that Super is continuation of Kai, both for great VA, and wonderful work of Kikuchi an sound directors. And it would be real waste, if some people connect Kikuchi music with that mess job done in Kai.
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Re: Kai or Z?

Post by Absolute Ice » Sat Sep 12, 2015 6:08 pm

Overall I prefer Dragon Ball Kai. But considering it was changed the original actors, I'll pick Dragon Ball Z here.
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