I have read the entire volumes of the original Dragon Ball recently, which means the 16 volumes of Dragon Ball and 26 volumes of Dragon ball Z. And now, I feel like I’m qualified to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about Dragon Ball.
So I scoured the internet looking for the questions and I’ll be damned, there’s a shit ton of them. Since I only read the original manga, I try to pick questions that are only related to that source material. Any questions from the spin-off or the sequels won’t be answered here.
Here’s the list of the questions in this first part. You can click any one of them to quickly jump to the relevant answers.
About Dragon Ball
- What is the point of Dragon Ball?
- Why is Dragon ball so boring?
- Is Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z different?
- Which is better, Dragon Ball or Dragon Ball Z?
About Goku and Vegeta
About Dragon Ball
1. What is the point of Dragon Ball?
There are several answers to this question. If we talk about the balls with numbered stars in them, then the whole point of gathering the balls is to have your wish granted by the Dragon. If we talk about the series, then the main point of it all is for the sake of entertainment and to pass the time.
But if we talk about the story as a whole, then it is mainly about overcoming adversities. The wish-granting balls that need to be gathered from around the world to make your dream come true, the alien race that would get stronger after each defeat/near-death experience, all of it is about transcending your limitations in order to be better and to get what you want.
2. Why is Dragon Ball so boring?
I can see why some people would think this legendary series is boring. I suspect the main reason for it is the repetition. There are so many things happening over and over again in the story.
The endless training, the repeated tournaments, and when Goku defeats a villain, the stronger one would appear in the next arc. All of it is so formulaic and could get boring fast.
3. Is Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z different?
In the original Japanese publication, there is only Dragon Ball. The English version in the US is the one that makes the distinction between Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z to follow the naming of the anime.
Both of them are still the story about Son Goku. But Dragon Ball is about the boyhood journey of Goku and is marked by its lighthearted tone. While Dragon Ball Z is about his adulthood journey and is marked by a more serious tone.
4. Which is better, Dragon Ball or Dragon Ball Z?
To each his own. Some people prefer the carefree adventure of Dragon Ball while others like the crazy action sequences of Dragon Ball Z.
Personally, I like them both and the top two of my favorite arcs come from Dragon Ball Z and Dragon Ball, respectively. You can read about my ranking of Dragon ball arcs here.
About Goku and Vegeta
5. Why is Goku called Son Goku?
Initially, the story of Dragon Ball was heavily inspired by the old Chinese mythology called Journey to The West. One of the main characters of the myth is a monkey king called Sun Wukong.
Sun Wukong himself has a different name and pronunciation in different places. He is called Suen Ng-hung in Cantonese, Son Oh Gong in Korean, Sun Gokong in Indonesian, and Son Goku in Japanese.
The design of Goku was based heavily on this mythical figure and that’s why Akira Toriyama decided to bestow the same name for his main character.
6. Why is Goku so famous?
I think the reason why Goku became so famous is because of how simple and straightforward he really is. There’s not much that needs to be thought about when we talk about Goku. He doesn’t have any traumatic past, mental health problems, etc.
He is simply a boy, and later on a man, who tries to enjoy his life as best as he could. And when he wants to do something, he just goes ahead and does it. There’s a charm to that way of life, and lots of people seem to be drawn to that part of him.
7. What is so special about Goku?
Compared to other characters, especially the one that he met during his boyhood adventure in Dragon Ball, Goku is much stronger, durable, and enthusiastic than others.
Later on, we know that one of the reasons is because of the Saiyan warrior’s blood that runs through his veins. But even more than that, Goku retains his childhood curiosity and straightforward nature all the way to his adult years.
And that is why he always charges headfirst into danger, which makes him appropriate and appealing as the main character.
8. How did Goku lose his tail?
There are several occasions in which Goku loses his tail. The first one happened in the first arc. He looked at the moon and turned into a giant monkey. Yamcha cut off his tail and he turned back into his old self.
The second one happened in the third arc. He’s in a tournament against his late grandfather. Knowing his weakness, his late grandfather grabbed his tail and accidentally cut it off.
Usually, Goku’s tail would always grow back whenever it got cut off. To prevent him from forever transforming back into a giant monkey, and to return the moon that was destroyed a few years back by master Roshi to the sky, Kami-sama decided to permanently remove his tail. It happened around the sixth arc.
9. How old is Goku?
Going strictly by the manga, the story begins when Goku is 11 years old. He was 12 in the second and third arc. He is 15 during the fourth and fifth arc. And 18 years old in the sixth and final arc of Dragon ball.
After that, Goku is 23 years old at the start of Dragon Ball Z and 24 by the end of the Saiyan arc. He was 26 at the beginning of the Cell Arc and 30 years old when it ended. When Majin Buu’s arc begins, he is 37 years old and at the end of Dragon Ball Z, he is 47 years old.
Keep in mind that I only counted his mental age. Due to Goku being dead a couple of times and the dead don’t physically age, his physical body is younger than his mental age.
10. Is Goku stronger with his tail?
Not really. The biggest advantage of the tail is giving him the ability to transform into a giant ape whenever he sees a full moon, just like every other Saiyans.
Sure, it makes him crazy powerful, but he also loses his sense of reasoning and becomes the embodiment of pure rage and power. This is why Kami-Sama finally decided that the tail is useless to him.
Not to mention the tail could be considered as one of the biggest weaknesses for a Saiyan. Vegeta turns into a giant ape in the Saiyan arc but immediately loses all his power when the tail is cut off. Pretty useless power, don’t you think?
11. Is Goku stronger than Vegeta?
Yes, sometimes. When it comes to the strength of Goku and Vegeta, it’s like they are always playing catch-up with each other. There are times when Vegeta is stronger than Goku, there are times where Goku is miles ahead of Vegeta, but most of the time, the difference in their strength is quite minuscule.
12. Who is Vegeta’s Wife?
Vegeta’s wife is Bulma. Well, at first they’re not a husband and wife, Vegeta is merely the father of their son. But after quite some time living under the same roof, particularly since the Cell arc, they began to treat each other like a genuine husband and wife.
13. Is Vegeta Goku’s brother?
No, Vegeta and Goku simply share the same home planet. Well, technically speaking, since Vegeta is the prince of The Saiyan, while Goku is merely the child of a lowly warrior, it is safe to say that Vegeta is Goku’s superior. But nowadays, living together on earth and having been through so much together, they are more like a close friend to each other.
About Bulma and Chichi
14. Does Chichi hate Goku?
No, but she often gets mad at Goku. You see, Goku is the strongest man in the world and he has saved the earth numerous times. There’s no question about that. But he is a terrible husband.
Most of the time, he is away from home fighting somewhere and has little to no income to speak of. Chichi has to find ways to put food on the table, take care of the household, and make sure their sons have the best education possible.
Goku certainly cares for his wife and children, but he knows next to nothing about being a working husband. And that’s what grinds her gear.
15. Is Bulma in love with Goku?
No, she never fell in love with Goku. For the first five arcs of Dragon Ball, she treats him just like a brat. She does show a brief sign of attraction to teenage Goku in the sixth arc, but then Goku got married to Chichi at the end of that arc.
In Dragon Ball Z, the seventh arc onward, Goku already has Gohan and Bulma is in an on-and-off relationship with Yamcha. By the Cell Arc, she already has a son with Vegeta. As you can see, there’s no time in which she ever fell in love with Goku. At best, she considers him an annoying little brother.
16. Why did Bulma choose Vegeta?
Rather than choosing him, it’s more like a spur-of-the-moment thing. As the story goes, she was having a bad breakup with Yamcha and feels kinda sad and depressed. Then she saw Vegeta sitting there alone. Looking cool and melancholic. One thing leads to another, suddenly there’s a baby in her tummy.
About Gohan and Future Trunks
17. Is Gohan stronger than Goku?
There is a time when Gohan is far stronger than Goku, which is during the Cell Arc. Ever since the Saiyan arc at the beginning of Dragon Ball Z, it has been said numerous times that a child of a Saiyan and an earthling has the potential to be far stronger than a pure-blooded Saiyan.
Even Vegeta admits this as a fact. And during the Cell arc, Goku even considered Gohan as his secret weapon that could surely defeat Cell. And eventually, he managed to do just that.
In this arc, Gohan is far stronger than everybody else. Unfortunately, because he focused more on his study from that day onward, he somehow fell behind others in terms of raw power.
18. Can Gohan beat Vegeta?
Sure he can. And he kinda did beat Vegeta once actually on the Saiyan arc. Gohan in the early part of Dragon Ball Z could be considered to be one the strongest beings in the world. And during the Cell arc, he is officially stronger than everybody else. Even Goku holds no candle to him.
19. Who killed Gohan?
In Dragon Ball Z, there are two times when Gohan died. The first one is when kid Buu suddenly blows up the earth. He dies along with everybody else on the planet, except for Vegeta and Hercule, who teleported to Kaio-Shin’s planet.
The second time is on an alternate timeline where the future Trunks come from. He is Trunk’s mentor in that timeline, and he already lost his left arm. He tries to take on the rampaging Android 17 and 18 alone. Unfortunately, he is killed by Android 17.
20. What did Elder Kai do to Gohan?
Elder Kai has the ability to draw out hidden powers of an individual, far beyond the normal limits of what they could achieve their whole life. As the one who pulled out the Zeta Swords and the one who has the most hidden potential, Elder Kai chose to use his special ability on Gohan.
21. Why doesn’t Trunks have a tail?
As a descendent of a Saiyan, Trunks most definitely has a tail, just like Gohan when he was a child. But similar to every other Saiyan on earth, his tail is most likely cut off.
The one who cut it off would most likely be Vegeta because he thought it could be a potential weakness for his son. Bulma would also do that because she doesn’t want her son to have a tail.
Although it isn’t explicitly shown in the series, we could still pretty much surmise such a thing would happen based on what we know about the series thus far.
22. Who broke Trunks sword?
The sword that future Trunks use is a weapon that could slash the new and improved Frieza to bits in a split second. So it is definitely one hell of a sword.
Alas, the sword is cracked and chipped the moment Android 18 parries Trunk’s sword swing. That’s right, Android No. 18 unintentionally broke the mighty sword when it came into contact with her arm.
That’s it for the first part. The next one would begin from question number 23rd up to the 50th question. In the second part, there will be questions regarding the allies, villains, and the overall world of Dragon Ball.
For a brief overview of the entire series, check out my previous article about the story arcs of Dragon ball in chronological order. Up next is part two of the most frequently asked questions about Dragon Ball.