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[[caption-width-right:350: ''"Cha-la Head Cha-La!..."'']]
->''"Stand by for'' Dragon Ball Z! ''Coming next..."''
-->-- '''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jCwEAqJkgY English narrator,]]''' introductory bumper.

%%Unsure of which particular dub(s) and/or which English narrator said this line, although I'm guessing Kyle Hebert and either the Ocean or Funimation dub..?

%%"Cha-La Head-Cha-La", "We Gotta Power", "Rock the Dragon", "Dragon Ball Z Theme (Android Saga)", and the "English 'uncut' Dragon Ball Z Theme" (Toonami; Saiyan Saga)
(''For the proper reading experience, run the music from [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GHnfX1RmZX8 here,]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSOjj8Q_9b4 here,]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4vjJrGeh1c here,]] or [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mcV-73d_0YA here]] (or [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TuFd5a_XLhc here,]] if you're [[DarkerAndEdgier really hardcore]]) while reading this page.'')

''Dragon Ball Z'' is the anime adaptation of the last two-thirds of the ''Manga/DragonBall'' manga. While the manga kept its original name throughout its run in Japan, the anime's title [[LetteredSequel was changed]] from ''Dragon Ball'' to ''Dragon Ball Z'' in 1989, and the focus had changed from a [[SupernaturalMartialArts Martial Arts]] {{Comedy}} series (inspired by ''Literature/JourneyToTheWest'') to [[CerebusSyndrome more serious and violent battles]] (and Creator/AkiraToriyama [[WordOfGod thought it would be ending soon]]). As such, ''Z'', is often used to refer both to the anime and this portion of the manga.

At the start, it revealed that Goku was not simply a boy with a tail but one of the last of the alien race, the Saiyans. He was sent into space shortly before the Saiyan planet was destroyed (with shades of ''Anime/GoldenBat'', ''[[https://web.archive.org/web/20130627154545/http://www.animevice.com:80/prince-of-gamma/18-31482/ Prince of Gamma,]]'' and ''Franchise/{{Superman}}''). Goku and his friends, reinforced by former enemies (a recurring theme) had to fight [[SortingAlgorithmOfEvil progressively more powerful]] villains. Although Goku and his martial arts skills (which let him and his friends fly, throw energy blasts and read minds) dominated the battles, the story focused more on Goku's son Gohan as he grew up. Running seven years and nearly 300 episodes, the series can be broken down into the four primary {{big bad}}s of the series: Vegeta, Frieza, Cell, and Majin Buu. Both ''Dragon Ball'' the manga and ''Dragon Ball Z'' the anime came to a triumphant conclusion after Gohan is married and his own daughter Pan enters the "Strongest Under the Heavens" tournament.

Followed by ''Anime/DragonBallGT'', which was an original story not based on the manga and had minimal involvement from Toriyama, which facilitated a lukewarm response.

The series was bought by Creator/{{Funimation}} for an English dub, which started in 1996. The enduring popularity of the series eventually lead to ''Anime/DragonBallKai'' in 2009, a more streamlined edit that removed most of the {{filler}}.

This sub-series spawned a [[MassivelyMultiplayerOnlineRolePlayingGame MMORPG]] continuation known as ''VideoGame/DragonBallOnline'' for a time, but also spanned fifteen theatrical movies and two special tv episodes. The first thirteen movies are [[NonSerialMovie non-serial movies]] that primarily reflected the concurrent story of the show. The fourteenth movie, ''Anime/DragonBallZBattleOfGods'', made ''years'' later under the direct involvement of Toriyama, is a canonical continuation to the manga and set some time after the Buu Saga. ''Anime/DragonBallZResurrectionF'' was a direct sequel, and the wild success of both films lead to ''Anime/DragonBallSuper'', a whole new SequelSeries to ''Z'', overwriting ''GT'' from the canon.

!!The work contains examples of:

* DragonBallZ/TropesAToG
* DragonBallZ/TropesHToP
* DragonBallZ/TropesQToZ