The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Discussion specifically regarding the "Dragon Ball Super" TV series premiering July 2015 in Japan, including individual threads for each episode.

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The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Psajdak » Sun Jul 05, 2020 9:19 pm

You can't expect further character development from characters that already completed their arcs in 90s.

Any new change would have resulted in the loss of what made them so iconic.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by emperior » Mon Jul 06, 2020 6:16 am

Battle of Gods completely invalidates this thread of yours, as in that movie both Goku and Vegeta go through some development. With no loss of what made them iconic.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by OhHiRenan » Mon Jul 06, 2020 9:44 am

I see their characterization in Battle of Gods less as character development and more the end result of their development. I feel like you could even make the argument that BoG is a character study of Goku. Beerus forces him to confront the notion that there will always be someone better in a manner that isn't exactly comfortable for him (the Super Saiyan God ritual) while still exciting Goku at the prospect that he's yet to reach his limits.

Plus, BoG is tonally more in-line with the original series than any other part of modern Dragon Ball.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Peach » Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:04 am

It's not just that they aren't growing.

....They've also been Flanderized.

Goku was an absentee father sometimes, but he loved his family. He didn't go around saying "LOL WHAT'S KISSING ^_^ ... AHH. ^V^ "

Goku of the 90's got more humble and less arrogant over time. Putting his trust in Gohan. Putting his trust in Goten and Trunks. He wouldn't gamble the fate of the multiverse for a rush. He would take it seriously. GT's characterization is more what I would expect from Goku in his old age when he's wiser and a grandfather.

It seems like Goku was written by a ton of different writers who had a list of character traits to check to box of every episode. Leading to insanely exaggerated characteristics. When I watch the Cell and Buu sagas and compare them to Super, it's a totally different character.
Last edited by Peach on Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by ChronoTwigger » Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:15 am

You can develop them, but this mean having very dramatical events that doesn't fit actual DB tones. So , you're correct.
DB is actually senseless, lacking motivations and plots. Why Goku should become strong as a God? Who care? No reason to collect such strenght: he doesn't need to save someone, his Sayan roots are already solved, power levels are now totally out of scale... When Black Goku was mistaken for Goten, that was quite a good thing: figure out Goku that should kill his son to save the world... and after that decide to stop fighting forever. That's quite an evolution. Well, nothing of this can happen in the sunny, happy, moe moe world of TOEI Dragonball.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by emperior » Mon Jul 06, 2020 11:04 am

Peach wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:04 am
It's not just that they aren't growing.

....They've also been Flanderized.

Goku was an absentee father sometimes, but he loved his family. He didn't go around saying "LOL WHAT'S KISSING ^_^ ... AHH. ^V^ "

Goku of the 90's got more humble and less arrogant over time. Putting his trust in Gohan. Putting his trust in Goten and Trunks. He wouldn't gamble the fate of the multiverse for a rush. He would take it seriously. GT's characterization is more what I would expect from Goku in his old age when he's wiser and a grandfather.

It seems like Goku was written by a ton of different writers who had a list of character traits to check to box of every episode. Leading to insanely exaggerated characteristics. When I watch the Cell and Buu sagas and compare them to Super, it's a totally different character.
I agree that Goku has been flanderized a bit and that it seems like they really do have a checklist of his most important traits.

But you are over exaggerating it.
First of all Goku has shown to care for his family multiple times in Super. Heck, he even told Ribrianne that maybe he would make a wish for Chi Chi! So what if he hasn’t kissed her?

Second, GT Goku wasn’t much more mature.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by EGonzo » Wed Jul 08, 2020 11:56 pm

emperior wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 11:04 am
Peach wrote:
Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:04 am
It's not just that they aren't growing.

....They've also been Flanderized.

Goku was an absentee father sometimes, but he loved his family. He didn't go around saying "LOL WHAT'S KISSING ^_^ ... AHH. ^V^ "

Goku of the 90's got more humble and less arrogant over time. Putting his trust in Gohan. Putting his trust in Goten and Trunks. He wouldn't gamble the fate of the multiverse for a rush. He would take it seriously. GT's characterization is more what I would expect from Goku in his old age when he's wiser and a grandfather.

It seems like Goku was written by a ton of different writers who had a list of character traits to check to box of every episode. Leading to insanely exaggerated characteristics. When I watch the Cell and Buu sagas and compare them to Super, it's a totally different character.
I agree that Goku has been flanderized a bit and that it seems like they really do have a checklist of his most important traits.

But you are over exaggerating it.
First of all Goku has shown to care for his family multiple times in Super. Heck, he even told Ribrianne that maybe he would make a wish for Chi Chi! So what if he hasn’t kissed her?

Second, GT Goku wasn’t much more mature.
Plus he's actually approving of Gohan's choice not to train. He tells him his schoolwork/presentation/whatever it was is just as important as the U6 tournament and it's okay if he skips it. Then later he checks up on him on the phone.

The thing about the Multiverse makes me think they were going for a role reversal: Goku as the battle-hungry lunatic who didn't care for anyone and Vegeta as the family man worried about it. But for some reason they changed their mind

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Sadala Elite » Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:45 am

The real reason they seem so stale now is because Toriyama hasn't done anything major with them character-wise after the Buu arc.

Also, the flanderization, bad amnesiac writing and the general lack of real character investment in them from the writers.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Sadala Elite » Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:50 am

Psajdak wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 9:19 pm
You can't expect further character development from characters that already completed their arcs in 90s.

Any new change would have resulted in the loss of what made them so iconic.
Long running characters in fiction often go through several different character arcs, often simultaneously to keep them interesting and 3D.

And from day 1 Goku is an example the Flat-Character arc. He's not designed by nature to go through any significant change at all.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by OhHiRenan » Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:27 pm

Sadala Elite wrote:
Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:50 am
Psajdak wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 9:19 pm
You can't expect further character development from characters that already completed their arcs in 90s.

Any new change would have resulted in the loss of what made them so iconic.
And from day 1 Goku is an example the Flat-Character arc. He's not designed by nature to go through any significant change at all.
Goku does not have a flat-character arc by any definition of the term, and a character does not need to be "designed by nature to go through significant change" to develop. I don't know why some fans are so quick to apply such a surface level reading to Goku's arc.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by emperior » Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:17 pm

I agree that Goku is always fundamentally the same (call it flat character arc or whatever you want) but this doesn’t mean he can’t go through some changes and character development and, in fact, he had it in the manga, then in Battle of Gods, in Resurrection F and in the Tournament of Power.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by JulieYBM » Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:44 pm

Stationary characterization basically allows for the production committee to rely on the status quo to sustain profits. It's not ideal for me, as both a creator-type and fan, but it's what essentially allows Dragon Ball to be most profitable: by aiming for the lowest common denominator. Toriyama not particularly caring about bigger, grander ideas and wanting to keep Dragon Ball dumb fun really doesn't help.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Lionel » Sat Jul 11, 2020 2:48 am

JulieYBM wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:44 pm
Stationary characterization basically allows for the production committee to rely on the status quo to sustain profits. It's not ideal for me, as both a creator-type and fan, but it's what essentially allows Dragon Ball to be most profitable: by aiming for the lowest common denominator. Toriyama not particularly caring about bigger, grander ideas and wanting to keep Dragon Ball dumb fun really doesn't help.
Great observation! Past materials of the Dragon Ball narrative retained Goku's exuberance and raring desire to fight strong opponents but he grew to exercise more caution with a willingness to pick his battles while simultaneously attempting to show them mercy if he felt they warranted it. Having said that, the brunt of the dynamism existed in the surrounding world and characters; you had new faces appearing while already established ones developed, their perspective on things shifting in the process. Super prefers to wedge a specific lapse in between two already established points in the manga for the ease of creating simple, usable material without deviating too far from the formula we all know.

I personally wish they would take some more risks because there has been that effort before -- Zamasu with his "fallen from grace" backstory with a warped mindset, Moro intending to be a magical oriented main villain, ect. It just hasn't been pushed far enough and there needs to be more originality and effort applied.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Sadala Elite » Mon Jul 13, 2020 1:44 am

OhHiRenan wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:27 pm
Sadala Elite wrote:
Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:50 am
Psajdak wrote:
Sun Jul 05, 2020 9:19 pm
You can't expect further character development from characters that already completed their arcs in 90s.

Any new change would have resulted in the loss of what made them so iconic.
And from day 1 Goku is an example the Flat-Character arc. He's not designed by nature to go through any significant change at all.
Goku does not have a flat-character arc by any definition of the term, and a character does not need to be "designed by nature to go through significant change" to develop. I don't know why some fans are so quick to apply such a surface level reading to Goku's arc.
And what noticeable development that Goku go through exactly? Especially when come to the other major reoccurring characters?
Last edited by Sadala Elite on Mon Jul 13, 2020 2:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by Sadala Elite » Mon Jul 13, 2020 1:45 am

JulieYBM wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 5:44 pm
Stationary characterization basically allows for the production committee to rely on the status quo to sustain profits. It's not ideal for me, as both a creator-type and fan, but it's what essentially allows Dragon Ball to be most profitable: by aiming for the lowest common denominator. Toriyama not particularly caring about bigger, grander ideas and wanting to keep Dragon Ball dumb fun really doesn't help.
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Re: The main reason why Goku, and Vegeta are so stale now personalitywise...

Post by OhHiRenan » Mon Jul 13, 2020 12:35 pm

Sadala Elite wrote:
Mon Jul 13, 2020 1:44 am
OhHiRenan wrote:
Fri Jul 10, 2020 4:27 pm
Sadala Elite wrote:
Thu Jul 09, 2020 3:50 am

And from day 1 Goku is an example the Flat-Character arc. He's not designed by nature to go through any significant change at all.
Goku does not have a flat-character arc by any definition of the term, and a character does not need to be "designed by nature to go through significant change" to develop. I don't know why some fans are so quick to apply such a surface level reading to Goku's arc.
And what noticeable development that Goku go through exactly? Especially when come to the other major reoccurring characters?
To name a few:

- Goku slowly gaining a wanderlust throughout the first arc that drives his character in the 21st Tenkaichi Budokai arc

- When he decides to revive Bora with the Dragon Balls, turning a selfish quest into a selfless one

- Goku's entire training with Karin is about overcoming character flaws

- The Piccolo Daimao arc brings Goku to his lowest point and forces him to grow up fast

- He's noticeably more mature and composed after training with God, and the 23rd Tenkaichi Budokai could be read as the culmination of Goku's arc until that point

- His speech to Freeza is the result of Goku grappling with his heritage & identity for two arcs

- Goku's comparative wisdom in the Cell & Boo arcs, he starts to recognize himself as a crutch that attracts danger & won't always be around to save the day

Goku doesn't have big developmental moments like Vegeta, Gohan, or Piccolo, but there's nothing flat about his arc. It's just subtle, and really only in comparison to how bombastic character arc in Dragon Ball tend to be.
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