Let me tell you the story of the last anime DVD box set I ever bought. The anime series Dragon Ball GT (a direct sequel to Dragon Ball Z) features Goku, Trunks, and Goku’s granddaughter Pan as they search multiple galaxies for the mysterious Black Star Dragon Balls. These Dragon Balls were created when Piccolo and Kami were one and therefore have large amounts of power. They were scattered after the first villain from the Dragon Ball series, Emperor Pilaf, accidentally wishes for Goku to become a child again. Now Goku must travel through space with Trunks and Pan to find them, otherwise the Earth will explode due to an overload of negative energy. It would have gone well, if a robot named Giru hadn’t eaten their Dragon Radar and merged it with his systems.
Last year I found a DVD set of the series, which I had not heard of at the time. The show seemed to be an okay concept. Goku becoming a kid and going to space with his granddaughter and one of my favorite DBZ characters? Sounds great! A few months later, I saw it again and bought the Season One box set. I never saw it the same way after watching it.
The first few episodes were alright (except for why are Pilaf and his subordinates back?), but it all goes downhill when Goku and company arrive at Imecka. It was a planet where everyone had to pay outrageous taxes to an evil emperor (who I call “Alien Shrek’s best friend”) named Don Kee. God, the hotel Goku and company stayed at still freaks me out. Why did the fridge in their room have a never-ending supply of food? How did Trunks get handcuffed to the bed there? Why does Giru, who they encounter here, have to eat? And most importantly, why did Ledgic, the guy who fights Goku near the end of that part, stay under Don Kee’s command?
My final verdict on the first planet: it’s as good as the level Dusty Desert in Sonic 06 (Metacritic Score: 46/100).
Next it was off to the planet that has Zoonama, the giant Whiscash. The story behind him is that he claimed to be able to cause earthquakes by simply wiggling his whiskers. He promises he won’t destroy a small village near his home if they bring him a bride. Why a catfish? And why did said catfish need a bride? Most important of all is this: why did Goku have to take off his clothes to swim? I never got the image of Goku’s privates out of my head while watching the first two series, why do we need it here? (Oh yeah, and his privates are shown in the opening. Yeah, that’s okay for kids.)
My final verdict: This one’s okay.
Onwards to the Luud saga! But first, we get to the worst part, the Parapara Brothers. Those guys are just on a whole other level of stupidity. Dancing to attack? Yeah, we get it. All this energy’s got you inspired now, and you couldn’t stop it, just set it free and dance, we know. And mind control through this dance? Completely useless. Parapara Brothers, if you’re going to try that, then when you get tired and stop dancing, your enemies will too.
Next, Luud himself. A monster powered by dolls made from his faithful followers, Luud is a really stupid idea. But then, here’s a twist! The man who turned Pan into a doll, Dolltaki (Pan refers to him as a “doll otaku” in the sub, which when said quickly, sounds like Dolltaki, great pun there), is turned into a doll himself! Gasp! Then he and Pan are fed to Luud, who has also eaten… the Parapara Brothers. Dear God. Anyway, the Brothers reveal that they have telepathy, but have to sing to use it. Dolltaki then reveals that Pan and Goku need to shoot beams at certain spots of Luud at the same time. This leads to the revelation that Goku is bad at countdowns, and the pair has to resort to an alternate countdown method using the alliteration “Pickle pots, purple pots, pepper pots!” I immediately facepalmed. It worked out well and everyone survived, which is great except for the fact that THE PARAPARA BROTHERS DID, TOO.
Final verdict: This is where the series really starts to drag.
Time for the Planet M2 saga. Oh boy. The little robot traveling with our crew, Giru, mentions to the gang that they’re passing by his home planet, and so they head down to take a look. It seems okay, until gangs of robots come to congratulate Giru on a stealth mission well done. That’s when the Not-Ginyu Force, named the Sigma Force, appear to take the trio to the evil Machine Mutant Dr. Myuu, the man behind the curtain the entire time. Trunks seemingly sacrifices himself for the other two by getting encased in carbonite, leaving Goku to fight the newly-arrived General Rilldo and Pan to infiltrate Myuu’s evil complex. As Super Saiyan Goku battles the Sigma Force leader General Rilldo, something actually really interesting is revealed: Rilldo is actually the entirety of Planet M2 given consciousness, meaning he can control any metal on the planet (which is made of pure steel). Goku and Pan are captured and taken to Dr. Myuu, only to be saved by Giru. Trunks’ carbonite shatters upon being dropped, but he’s perfectly fine, as he and Giru were planning a sneak attack on Myuu in order to find his greatest secret.
Final verdict: One of the best parts of the series. That’s not saying much, though. Although, I swear I’ve seen a character frozen in metal somewhere before…
And now finally, the Baby Saga. Myuu’s ultimate secret is an “advanced Machine Mutant” named Baby, who is actually a Tuffle (or Tsufruian, the Japanese name for the species). The Tuffles once lived on Planet Vegeta, but were almost killed off by the Saiyans. This fact is mentioned in some of DBZ’s filler material. Baby, before reaching a conscious state, created the Machine Mutants to build him a way to survive and grow. The gang almost finishes off Baby, but he escapes and somehow haunts them the rest of the trip. He then heads to Earth, where he possesses almost everyone, except for martial arts/eating-contest champion Hercule, the reformed Buu, and Buu’s former evil side, Uub, who had become Earth’s protector during the year Goku was gone. That’s where I quit watching, because it was getting too stupid for me. My DVD player then went untouched for about a year.
Final verdict: This saga made me quit watching. Do you think I enjoyed it?
The only other anime DVD I bought after that was Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, and that was a year later. (Not because of the GT set; I just bought other things, like Cave Story 3D and some amiibos.) I feel like owning this set has changed me, and not for the better. At least the GBA game, Dragon Ball GT: Transformation, is somewhat okay. (Giru and Pan as a fighting duo? That’s actually a good idea!) And let’s not forget the Dragon Ball Xenoverse DLC, because it SKIPS OVER THE PARAPARA BROTHERS, THANK GOODNESS. Fortunately, Dragon Ball Super and the recent movies do a better job of being sequels. I also enjoyed Battle of Gods’ reference of Emperor Pilaf accidentally using the Dragon Balls to make him and his crew young again, but way younger than he intended.
Thank you for reading. Now, I’m going to go back to lobbying for a better dub/official sub of the comedy anime Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo, hoping Quote from Cave Story makes it into Super Smash Bros. as DLC, making fun of the Sonic the Hedgehog fanbase, and attempting to finish the current stages in the mobile game One Piece: Treasure Cruise. I hope this article served as a suitable warning as to why you should never buy (or even watch) Dragon Ball GT.
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