What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

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Nex Carnifex
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What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Nex Carnifex » Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:14 pm

Dragon Ball is generally optimistic, but have their been any dark scenes, moments, themes, easter eggs, etc? I remember the scene with the sniper shooting the old couple, when the man ran over to his dead wife they shot him to for fun. Then there was Cell absorbing that man denying his money, which is sort of symbolic. I know there have been many kids cartoons with hidden adult messages, just wondering if there was something disturbing in Dragon Ball you picked up on or just thought was disturbing.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by BluezaBladeNZ » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:10 pm

One I always found pretty dark, though it's more graphical, is where Ma Junior is torturing Goku after he shoots a Kikoha out of his mouth and hits Goku in the chest, then he continously stomps on his wound.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by SRB2Unleashed » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:15 pm

When the remaining population of the city is listening to the radio about Buu's rampage. But then when they hear about Gotenks it becomes less Dark :D
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Ringworm128 » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:21 pm

Freeza impaling Krillin. And call me crazy but I thought the dub version only added to the darkness/creepiness.
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Codarik » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:35 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpNR9d-2Ed4

The dub music in the Buu arc totally made the entire arc more darker than it was.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by KiddoCabbusses » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:41 pm

The TV Specials would be easy picks. They both show completely bleak and seemingly hopeless scenarios.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by DanielGClapp » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:47 pm

When Spopovich was torturing Videl.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Mountain » Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:50 am

The Garlic Jr. arc is fairly dark, I'd say.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by SSJ YUSUKE » Wed Sep 28, 2011 1:03 am

The fact that Majin Buu actually eats people is kind of disturbing, even if he just turns them into candy.
I remember in the anime there was that part where Buu met a blind boy who wanted to get milk, so Buu turned some guy into milk gave it to the kid, who then drank the milk! Thats pretty dark.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by theoriginalbilis » Wed Sep 28, 2011 2:44 am

- The majority of the Freeza arc (mass genocide, torture, child murder, betrayals, backstabbing)
- The early parts of the Cell arc (the absorption of entire city populations)
- Both Bardock & Trunks specials. Probably as dire and as hopeless as the franchise ever got (except for the financial failures of GT and Kai. BURRRRN! )
- Videl's fight against Spopovitch. (More like a one-sided beating)
- The two men who went on a killing spree (shooting an elderly couple and a dog) during the Buu saga.
- Garlic Jr's theme and the "Demon Mist" theme (both from the Faulconer score.) These compositions are actually pretty good in my opinion, and they do sound rather dark and ominious. They both remind me of the score for the Halloween films.
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Saimaroimaru » Wed Sep 28, 2011 4:12 am

When Buu inside the human and makes him explode.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by DragonBoxZTheMovies » Wed Sep 28, 2011 4:25 am

- Broly's past. He gets stabbed in the chest as a baby, narrowly escapes an explosion, punches his dad in the face and can't even get a decent nap without being woken up.
- Cell's final transformation.
- Freeza's return after the 'Genki Dama'.
- Dodoria slaughtering the Namekians.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by SHINOBI-03 » Wed Sep 28, 2011 6:19 am

Kuririn's first death and the initial part of the Piccolo Daimao saga. I think that's the first time where we can see there's a great danger coming up.
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by kaialone » Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:29 am

Violence against the innocent :(
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Michsi » Wed Sep 28, 2011 10:54 am

There are actually quite a number of dark moments in Dragon Ball.

One extremely disturbing scene that comes to mind, though it's only a small panel long, is the one when Gohan notices a family, that had been out camping, had been killed by Babidi and his men. I think we even see the woman cut in half.

There is something about the innocent minding their own business ( A FAMILY THAT HAS BEEN OUT CAMPING FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!!) getting caught up in someone else's violent mess, that just seems so wrong.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Cipher » Wed Sep 28, 2011 11:22 am

There are lots of little twisted moments (many, many of them in the Boo arc), but the only arc I'd consider truly dark in Dragon Ball is Namek. Even with the Japanese child-pandering gimmick of power levels running rampant, things are truly grim. The main characters are never that helpless and afraid in the series again, skirting around Vegeta, Freeza, etc. There's a scene in the anime (possibly the manga as well?) of Gohan burying a village of dead Namekians I think sums up the arc fairly well.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Godo » Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:07 pm

Android 19 and 20's slaughtering which included some pretty grotesque ways of killing.
Another one would be the quick turn from the 22nd Tenkaichi Budokai and it's "will power and the power of light, Shônen spirit, fight fight fight!!!!" feeling to Kuririn being killed, Kame-Sennin being killed, Chao-zu being killed, numerous other people being killed. Oh, and also Piccolo Daimao commanding for Tenshinhan's heart being ripped out, and Piccolo Daimao torturing Goku.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Piccolo Daimao » Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:19 pm

-The entire Piccolo Daimao arc. I think it was the first shift towards DB becoming a series with a somewhat darker tone, with the deaths of three good guys and Shenlong. Then there was the murders of old Tenka'ichi Budokai entrants, and Piccolo Daimao himself. You also saw how Goku changed from a happy-go-lucky little boy to a vengeful, "gonna-kick-your-eye-out" warrior.

-Ma Junior's torture of Goku at the 23rd Tenka'ichi Budokai. Goku seemingly defeats Piccolo, leading to the 10-count, only for Piccolo to surprise mouth-blast through his chest, stomp on his wound and break all his limbs. I think the fact that the place is completely deserted because of everyone finding out he was Piccolo, with only Goku's friends and the announcer there, lends itself somewhat to the scene.

-Dodoria killing the Namekians in the anime. What I thought was quite tense and grim was when Dodoria rushed at the old Namekian, kept phasing in out before hitting him, seemingly splitting into two, grabbing the Namekian's head as he twitches in pain, then breaking his neck as the background turns to black and white.

@Cipher: No, in the manga, Gohan doesn't bury the dead Namekians. He just comments on how it's awful, then dives underwater to search for the Dragon Ball.
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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by StarRot » Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:23 pm

I agree with the Namek arc being incredibly bleak. I never really noticed it, watching the show the first time around as a kid. But when I got older, re-watching it … I was struck by just how gloomy it was.

The word "despair" truly sums up that whole storyline.

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Re: What is the darkest moment/theme in Dragon Ball?

Post by Cipher » Wed Sep 28, 2011 3:21 pm

I guess I'd also like to mention the Saiyan arc. It's certainly not as dark as Namek, and once both death and super villains become the norm for the series, it kind of loses its impact, but look at where it falls in the series.

Everything up to the Saiyan arc has more or less worked out. Sure, Piccolo killed several main characters in his introductory arc, but it was something out of the ordinary. Moreover, the characters were unprepared, and when they trained and found ways to power up, they saved the day no problem.

In the Saiyan arc, you have the heroes of what has more or less been a light-hearted shonen manga training for a year to stop the upcoming threat. You know it's going to be rough, but how bad could things really be? You know the heroes, stronger than ever, are at least going to put up a decent fight.

And then they're all slaughtered effortlessly. It's a bit of a cruel twist that can be easy to miss if you're not a child who grew up reading it from the mid '80s on.

But other than that, yeah. Namek arc, yo. That's the last time death seems quite so scary and bleak. Hell, it's the last time anything seems like it has real consequences at all, since the only means of revival are the Namekian Dragon Balls, which are both being hunted by three different parties and on a time limit due to the Grand Elder's life.

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