Hello, ladies, gentlemen, and everyone between and beyond, and welcome to week 36 of the first Dragon Ball rewatch of the decade.
We're doing five episodes a week, and we'll be watching every single episode of Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, and Dragon Ball GT. All 508 episodes. Plus the TV specials and the movies.
I encourage you all to watch in Japanese with subtitles, especially if you have never done so before, but watch along in whichever way brings you the most joy.
DBZ movie 2! A favourite for many.
Unfortunately, due to my own screwups, this thread is being posted very late, and we don't have much trivia. We'll update this OP soon and add more trivia, but for now, the thread is up at least.
Previous thread: Week 42 (DBZ 33-37)
Next thread: Week 44 (DBZ 38-42)
Anyway, without further ado...
The World’s Strongest Guy
Dub title: World's Strongest
Originally released 10th of March 1990
Director: Daisuke Nishio
Animation supervisor: Minoru Maeda
Written by: Takao Koyama
While looking at the Dragon Radar, Oolong notices that all of the Dragon Balls are starting to be gathered together. He and Gohan, who were also searching for the Dragon Balls, head out to investigate and end up at the Tsurumai-Tsuburi Mountains’ eternal wall of ice. Dr. Kochin summons Shen Long and wishes for Dr. Uiro’s lab to be released from the ice. The ice begins to break away and a building emerges. Gohan and Oolong look on in disbelief.
Soon, Dr. Kochin and Dr. Uiro begin searching for the world's strongest man, and they kidnap some of Goku's friends...
- This film first premiered as part of the Spring 1990 "Toei Anime Festival" on the 10th of March 1990.
- At the time this movie aired, the manga was up to Gohan and Kuririn fighting Recoom where he breaks Gohan's neck. The anime was up to Kuririn and Dende starting off to the Grand Elder's, Vegeta slaughtering the Namekian village, and Nappa's victims arriving at Kaio's world.
- For the second movie in a row, Piccolo takes on an antagonistic role. The fact he was mind-controlled to do is a concept that will later be revisited in the Garlic Jr. arc, which acts as a sequel to the previous movie.
- Dr. Uiro was designed by Akira Toriyama, while Minoru Maeda designed all the other characters original to this movie.
- This is the first Dragon Ball movie to be a full hour in length; the previous movies had been 45-50 minutes. 50-60 minutes would remain the standard from here on; the first Broly movie (75 minutes) and the 10th anniversary movie (80 minutes) are notable exceptions.
- As is becoming increasingly common with these movies, the vague timeline placement makes this movie impossible to actually slot into the original storyline. Gohan is in his Saiyan Training outfit and can fly, suggesting that he's survived the Saiyans, however Goku is fully healed instead of having all of his bones broken, and of course Piccolo is alive. Daizenshuu 6 suggests that it takes place after the fight with Vegeta, due to Goku's gi not sporting the "go" symbols it acquires on Namek.
- VERY confusingly, Gohan's study song shows the scene of Piccolo sacrificing his life for Gohan during the Nappa fight. It's possible Toei originally intended for this movie to be set after Namek, and figured Toriyama would have brung Piccolo back to life by that point.
- This movie is one of the few times Gohan and Oolong actually interact with each other.
- The capsule ship that Gohan and Oolong use to get to the mountain is the same one used by the Dragon Ball Gang to chase after Goku when he entered the Red Ribbon Army HQ, and later to travel to Baba's palace.
- In the flashback at the start of the movie, Oolong steals the revised Dragon Radar with the mushroom top design. This is its first appearance in a movie, however it had been used in the anime and manga for several months beforehand.
- In the shot of Oolong running from Kame House with the Radar, however, it's using the older puck design.
- Gohan wears Piccolo's full cape outfit in this film, predating his use of it in the Cell Games by two and a half years, albeit without the shoulder pauldrons.
- The shot of the panties falling from the sky is of course based on Episode 12 of Dragon Ball, however the shot has been re-animated (the sky is also blue, rather than green as in the original episode).
- The shot of the Dragon Balls activating and breaking the ice uses the same sound effect used for Super Saiyan activation, although the anime hadn't reached this point yet. The sound effect was first used during Blue's duel with Tao Pai-Pai.
- The Dragon Balls falling into the icy ravine were also used for the preroll video from the "Arrival" DVD/VHS release. Notably, this preroll video seems to contain a small amount of audio from the elusive 1996 dub of DBZ movie 1, with some vocalisations from Ian Corlett being audible at timestamp 1:12.
- At the end of the seizure-inducing title card, the cue for the title itself uses the same series of notes used for the main title of the first Dragon Ball movie.
- Ironically, this is the first piece of Dragon Ball anime to feature an arctic setting, despite the Head Cha-La intro featuring the shots of the crumbling iceberg. Such a setting would be used for the Super Android 13 movie, and much later for Dragon Ball Super: Broly, but the manga/anime storyline would never feature this setting.
- The little Urio grunts of course have designs very similar to the Saibamen.
- On the desk in Gohan's study-room is a model of a Mini Cooper in british racing green. On the shelves is also a model of a white-and-red Formula 1 car, possibly based on a piece done by Toriyama in June of that year. June 1990 is when Shonen Jump was sponsored by McLaren, who at the time were sponsored by cigarette company Malboro and thus sported the famous white-and-red paint job.
- Also in Gohan's study is a globe, which is clearly depicting the real-world Earth: North and South America, Asia, and a particularly poor rendition of Australia are visible on it.
- During Gohan's study song, there's a shot of him flying with a pterosaur and an orange saber-toothed cat. These are of course Goku's first opponents seen in the story (not countaing Bulma's Renault).
- The brief scuffle at Kame House seems to imply that Roshi is stronger than Gohan at this point, as Gohan was pulverized by the grunts earlier (albiet taken by surprise).
- Due to how topography works around small islands like Kame House, there's NO WAY the Urio ship could hide underwater like it does.
- Misokatsun has a very similar appearance to Buyon from Muscle Tower. He even has the same ability to absorb attacks, something Goku falls for a second time.
- When talking with Oolong, Goku says that Roshi has previously won the Tenkaichi Budokai. It's unknown if he's referring to the 21st TB, where Roshi was disguised as Jackie Chun (thus implying Goku found out), or a past victory where Roshi never used the disguise.
- Not counting Kai or the video games, this movie is the final time Goku uses Kinto'Un to fly in official media.
- The villains of this movie are all named after food specialties from Nagoya, including Uiro (a chewy rice confection), Kochin (a large Chinese breed of chicken), Kishime (a flat udon noodle), Ebi furai (fried prawns that is very popular in Japan) and Tonkatsu (fried pork cutlets). These were all named by Takao Koyama, the scenario writer, before their designs were made.
- Ebifurya has extra meaning as it's a nonsense word used to poke fun at the Nagoya dialect, which adds "ya" at the end of many words. While this doesn't happen with ebi furai itself, this is why speakers of this dialect are sometimes said to talk like cats!
- Dr. Urio and Dr. Kochin being rejected for their genetic sciences is vaguely similar to Dr. Gero. They also have similar applications of biotechnology, and kidnapped humans to subject to modifications.
- Dr. Kochin claims that the woodland area near South City turned into a desert in an instant. This is ironic because in the anime, the area outside of South City is shown prominently in the first episode of the Red Ribbon Arc, and it is in fact a desert where Namu lives!
- Apparently Dr. Urio is capable to sensing ki!
- Also it's GOHAN flying the ship! Pretty good for a five year old!
- The design of Saiyan armour has by this point influenced Minoru Maeda's character designs, as the chest/shoulder armour makes those that aren't human-shaped easier to draw (hence why the henchmen armour in this movie looks similar to Saiyan armour). In Daizenshuu 6, Maeda mused that if he were to draw Sleeping Princess' characters after this point, he likely would have done the same thing for the various demons like Ghastel, the red demon with the pink ribbons.
- The fight in the middle of this movie is the source of many shots in the original Rock the Dragon intro, including Goku backflipping and slipping on the ice, Goku breaking free of the ice with the Kaio-Ken, Kuririn running along the wall avoiding Dr. Cochin's machine gun fire, and Goku using Kaio-Ken x3.
- Despite moving on to Head Cha La as the title theme, this movie still uses Mystical Adventure as the theme for Goku, as always.
- When Goku lands on the upper floor after using the Kaio-Ken, his landing pose is very similar to when he used the Kaio-Ken in the Saiyan battle.
- Similarly, the shots of Goku recovering after using Kaio-Ken x4 are taken from when he did the same against Vegeta, hence explaining why his shirt is suddenly destroyed. In both cases, Goku has to clarify to Kuririn/Yajirobe that his target isn't dead yet.
- Dr. Kochin explains that he's able to control Piccolo via the evil in his heart, effectively a scientific version of Babidi's spell.
- Gohan claims that Piccolo isn't a bad person. While that's debatably true at the moment, he's forgetting that he once destroyed an entire city trying to secure rulership of the world.
- It's unknown where Dr. Kochin stores the bullets for his machine gun arm. It's possible that they're created rapidly, similar to the gun itself.
- The battle against Dr. Urio is the first instance of a group Kamehameha.
- Going out of character here but WHAT?! GOHAN HAS THE NYOI-BO?!?!
- This is the second and final time the Genki-Dama is portrayed as being contained within Goku's body before he fires it. Starting with the fight against Freeza and Tree of Might, Goku will hold his arms up and gather the ki above him instead.
- As the Genki-Dama flies past Gohan and Kuririn, we see a collage of the people of Earth, despite no people being depicted donating to it. This is likely instead meant to represent the hopes of the people of Earth in this one final shot.
- When Goku awakes in the snow, there's an impression around his hair, despite hair not being heavy enough to do this.
- At the end of the film, the narrator says that another like Dr. Urio may appear somewhere, and that Goku and the others will be there. This is rather prophetic of the initial encounter with Dr. Gero, although Goku will be taken out of commission thanks to the Heart Virus and miss most of the Gero encounter. It's unknown if Toriyama took inspiration from this movie for the Android Arc, or if this is just a massive coincidence.
- This movie was initially dubbed and released in 1998 by Pioneer using the Ocean cast, and scripts written by Ward Perry that stayed very faithful to the original Japanese script. Funimation redubbed the movie in 2005 as part of their "Ultimate Uncut" line of releases (though the original 1998 dub was already uncut), for which they tweaked the scripts by censoring it a little (any mentions of "Hell", for instance, were removed) and adding their usual "Punching up" process of adding gags and colloquialisms the Funimation writers liked. Weirdly, unlike their redubs of Z movies 1 and 3, Funimation's Kikuchi-scored mix of this movie has some of the added sound effects from the Pioneer dub that aren't in the Japanese version (the Nathan Johnson-scored mix does not have the added sound effects). There was another dub in roughly 2001, the infamous "Big Green" dub, recorded in France for distribution across Europe. Speedy Video also did a bootleg dub of this movie.
- Some of the core people who would later form TeamFourStar (namely Lanipator and MasakoX, who were joined by Vegeta3986, who was involved in DBZA for season 1 and some of season 2) did a parody of this movie and its predecessor some time before they began work on Dragon Ball Z: The Abridged Series. A script for Z movie 3 was written but never recorded, according to Lanipator (apparently it was mostly written by Vegeta3986, and the other two members of the group hated it, which proved to be the death of the group, which paved the way for TeamFourStar to be formed). Initially, TeamFourStar skipped parodying these first two movies, but they eventually got around to them, with nothing from the original Neighbourhood Cluck scripts making it into the TeamFourStar versions.
- The Neighbourhood Cluck versions of DBZ movies 1 and 2 are considered something of an old shame by TeamFourStar, much like a lot of their early work; though this pre-TFS material even moreso than DBZA season 1, seemingly largely because Vegeta3986's popularity among the "Abridging" scene meant he often got his way on jokes Lanipator and MasakoX didn't like; apparently these writing conflicts are a large part of why Tree Of Might never went beyond a script. These days, it's nearly impossible to find the original version of Z movie 1, though a "Remastered" edit is currently on YouTube, which appears to be basically the original but with music from Dragon Ball Kai added, and possibly some of the footage replaced with slightly higher-quality sources.