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Pilaf Gang

     In General 

Pilaf Gang (ピラフ一味, Pirafu Ichimi)
Click here to see the Pilaf Gang in Super 

A group run by Emperor Pilaf that tries to obtain the Dragon Balls for Pilaf, so he can Take Over the World.

  • Adaptational Early Appearance: In the original manga, they aren't introduced until Goku and friends have collected six Dragon Balls and reached his castle (Chapter 18). In the anime, they show up in the very first episode, and acquire the Dragon Ball that they have in the manga. For the rest of the meta-arc, their various exploits in attempting to acquire the other Dragon Balls are depicted.
  • Affably Evil: Both Mai and Shu are decent enough and only do bad things under Pilaf's orders.
  • Ascended Extra: While we only first meet them near the end of the manga's first arc, the anime introduces them in the very first episode and has them around as reoccurring villains from the start, even showing how they got ahold of their Dragon Ball. In addition, they are also secondary antagonists for the first few episodes of the Red Ribbon Army arc, before being easily defeated by the Red Ribbon Army, and they make one last appearance shortly before Goku and Chi Chi's wedding, whereas in the manga they were never seen again for the rest of the manga's original run after being betrayed by King Piccolo. They come back in force during Super and remain important to the plot until the Universe Survival Arc.
  • Blind Obedience: Mai and Shu follow Pilaf's orders without question, despite his stupidity. They all do really care for each other though.
  • The Bus Came Back: After being completely absent from Dragon Ball Z and if you don't count GT, the Pilaf gang makes their canon return in Battle of Gods. They get on the bus again during the Tournament of Power, but return during the party in the ending montage.
  • But Not Too Evil: After their appearances in Dragon Ball, they're definitely this. After Majin Buu exterminated humanity, Porunga resurrects all of those killed since the day of 25th World Martial Arts Tournament, with the exception of the truly evil ones. The gang comes back, so they can't be all that bad.
  • Butt-Monkey: They take a lot of Amusing Injuries like being thrown off of a moving airplane by King Piccolo, or in Mai and Shu's case being punished by Pilaf.
  • Edible Theme Naming:
    • Pilaf is named after rice pilaf.
    • Shu and Mai's names are two parts of shumai, a type of Chinese dumpling.
  • Expy: All three are based on the Space Patrol Squad of Dr. Slump.
  • Fountain of Youth: Super reveals that the they managed to gather the Dragon Balls and wish for restored youth during the Android Saga. Unfortunately for them, they don't specify how young they want to be and end up being regressed into babies. In Future Trunks's timeline, it ended up being the last wish made on the Dragon Balls before Piccolo and Kami died.
  • Harmless Villain: After their first defeat they stopped being a real threat to Goku. The most they do is just annoy him.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: After the first arc of Dragon Ball, the gang's only purpose is to randomly show up and get their butts kicked.
  • Heel–Face Turn: The gang hung around Capsule Corp early on in Super to be in a position to swipe the Dragon Balls when they come into play again, but eventually just stopped caring and actually started helping around the lab. They're actually as happy as everyone else is when Bulma gives birth.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Although Mai and Shu are both more competent than Pilaf, that isn't saying much since Pilaf is a Psychopathic Manchild Genius Ditz, who isn't half as smart as he thinks he is. Shu tends to be dimwitted, while Mai is smarter, but is held back by her more stupid comrades.
  • Iron Butt Monkey: Being kicked off their airship by Demon King Piccolo only causes them to hit the ground Wile E. Coyote style.
  • Karmic Jackpot: Even though they're forced to help Sobert and Tagoma revive Frieza, they kept them from using the second wish to bring back King Cold by wishing for a million Zeni. They used the money to have a feast.
  • Laughably Evil: They can never catch a break nor do they really deserve one. Watching them fail in all their endeavors is half the fun of watching them.
  • The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body: It's not noticeable with Pilaf, who was already a Manchild to begin with, but the gang act much more like children after being de-aged.
  • Mugging the Monster:
    • A Filler from the first series has Mai and Shu take Chichi hostage. She beats them up the moment she realizes they're actually serious.
    • Mai holds Trunks at gunpoint and demands the Dragon Balls in Battle of Gods, having no clue how powerful Trunks or the other characters at the party are. The cast thinks it's all a game.
  • Non-Action Guy: All of them in Super due to being children and not being ki-using warriors. Pilaf specifically requests that Trunks never spar with them again.
    • Mai averted this by trying to kill Gohan in the Battle of the Gods version, but was ineffective and almost got Videl killed instead.
  • Odd Friendship: The three of them get along surprisingly well with Trunks, despite still being wannabe villains.
  • Older Than They Look: All three of them are this thanks to an accidental wish on the Dragon Balls. In the present timeline, they are a few years older than Bulma, and Mai's future self is in her 70s or 80s but looks as old as she was when Goku was a small child.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: The group provided this even when standing next to King Piccolo - even when the Piccolo arc was the darkest the series had ever been at that point.
  • Post-Final Boss: The gang is this in the Fortuneteller Baba arc. After Goku faces off against Baba's fighters, including his temporarily resurrected grandpa, Pilaf & co. are revealed to be holding the last Dragon Ball, only to get quickly defeated by Goku. The anime has them put up a decent fight, but at the end, they were still easier to beat than any of Baba's fighters.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Mai and Shu are definitely not really evil and are content with not taking over the world or hunting Dragon Balls; they always just followed Pilaf's orders.
  • Redemption Promotion: In Super, the gang eventually starts outright helping the heroes, and have gotten more screen time since than they got from the King Piccolo saga onwards.
  • Rewarded as a Traitor Deserves: More or less what Demon King Piccolo does to the gang, being the ones who sold out mankind to the devil for world conquest after they had outlived their usefulness (though he does "spare" their lives).
  • Shoo Out the Clowns:
    • Their last appearance in the Dragon Ball franchise before Battle of Gods (not counting their cameos shortly before Goku and Chi-Chi's wedding in the anime and in GT) is being betrayed by Demon King Piccolo, whose arc was the darkest the series had ever been at that point.
    • They're completely absent in Z, the part of the franchise best known for changing the tone of the franchise from a martial arts comedy to a Shonen fighting action series.
    • Inverted in the Future Trunks Arc. While this portion of Super is one of the darkest and most depressing stories in Dragon Ball's history, this arc is where they have their largest amount of screentime in Super and most plot importance due to being Present Trunks's friends and both versions of Mai's relationships with the two Trunkses.
    • While the Universe Survival Arc has its fair share of comedy, there is more of an air of tension. This leads to them not appearing after the arc starts, along with Goten and Trunks who get this trope enforced on them in-universe by Vegeta.
  • Small Role, Big Impact:
    • They only appear in the very first episode of GT, as well as a brief scene near the end of the Baby Saga, but it was them rediscovering the Black Star Dragon Balls that kick-started the entire first arc, as well as Goku's becoming a kid again.
    • In Resurrection 'F', the gang were the ones who gathered the Dragon Balls so that Sorbet and Tagoma could revive Frieza. They also stop them from reviving King Cold by stealing the second wish and in Super the third wish.
  • Team Rocket Wins: Maybe not a complete victory, but throughout the entire series, the gang are by far the most successful villains when it comes to successfully gathering/wishing upon the Dragon Balls. While Pilaf's wishes either tend to backfire or be ridiculously small in scope compared to other villains like Garlic Jr., he has still managed to gather the Dragon Balls no less than 3 (4 counting GT) times.
    • They are some of the few to get their wish for youth back and have it turn out well even if it was an accident. Not only do they get to be young again, their quality of life significantly improves after moving in with Trunks's family.
  • Terrible Trio: Together with Pilaf.
  • Undying Loyalty: Mai and Shu to Pilaf despite his abuse. Even when wished back to being children, they still stick by Pilaf's side.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Sure, Pilaf insults the other two a lot, but in the end, the other two are the closest thing to friends each one has. The three even grow old together. And then young again. Eventually, Pilaf even starts showing the "Best Buds" part as much as the "Vitriolic" part.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After Demon King Piccolo regains his youth, he kicks the gang off their own airship. Apparently, their reward was "not dying."


Pilaf (ピラフ, Pirafu)
Voiced by: Shigeru Chiba (Japanese), Dave Mallow (Harmony Gold dub), Don Brown (BLT dub), Mike McFarland (Mystical Adventure), Chuck Huber (Funimation dub), Dean Galloway (Blue Water dub), Tom Fahn (Bang Zoom/Toonami Asia dub in Super) Yamil Atala (Latin American)

"I am a brilliant researcher and an unrivaled mastermind... with a special knack for devious behavior."

The first villain in the original series, a short midget with dreams of... what else... taking over the world. After Goku and friends ruin his original attempt and destroy his castle (thanks to Goku's Great Ape form), he appears a few more times as a minor annoyance, but he plays an important role in reviving King Piccolo in the hopes that he'll be allowed to share in his global conquest; Piccolo betrays him as soon as it's convenient. Then he's never seen again... at least not in the Z series. He makes an appearance in GT though, actually kicking off the entire series.

He, as well as his lackeys, return in the Battle of Gods and Resurrection F movies, where its revealed that the trio got-de-aged by Shenron previously. Likewise, they reappear in Super, where they get recurring (if minor) roles.

  • Ambiguously Human: He's very small, blue-skinned, and has pointy ears and no nose. It's never stated what he actually is, nobody comments on his appearance, and nobody else like him is ever seen.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: It is never explained what Pilaf really is, and nobody comments upon him being a cyan-skinned midget with pointed ears and no nose. Then again, the general population in cities is shown to consist of human-animal hybrids, different colored aliens, etc. Even some of the major characters (Tien with his three eyes, Oolong being a pig-man) are not commented upon. Word of God is that there are human-type, animal-type and monster-type earthlings. Pilaf is one of the latter.
  • And Then What?: Shu asks Pilaf what exactly will he do once he takes over the world. Pilaf never thought that far ahead.
  • Arc Villain: The first major one that was not a Villain of the Week, but it would be a while before an actual Big Bad that could fight would appear.
  • Ax-Crazy: Pilaf's first response to any form of failure is a gratuitous DEATH THREAT. He is childish compared to the madness of the Z series such as Frieza and Buu.
  • Bad Boss: In Dragon Ball. In an early episode, he had Shu physically restrained and nearly sliced him up with a chainsaw simply because Shu wouldn't take the blame for Pilaf himself farting. By Super, Pilaf has actually undergone Character Development after realizing the depths of Shu and Mai's Undying Loyalty to him and engages in Pet the Dog moments toward them more often.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • In his appearance in GT, Pilaf finds the Black Star Dragon Balls and summons Ultimate Shenlong with the intent of wishing to Take Over the World. Before he can, he idly says it would be nice if his enemy Goku were a little kid again. Ultimate Shenlong interprets this as Pilaf's wish and turns Goku into a child, leaving the still-powerful Goku to mop up Pilaf and his gang.
    • Reversed in Battle of Gods where Pilaf wished for youth, feeling that there'd be no point in ruling the world if they would not live long afterwards. In response, Shenron turns him and his minions into children.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: This is the person who released King Piccolo, the devil of the Dragon Ball world.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He pictures himself as the main villain, but is more of a whiny, spoiled brat. It would be a while before any really evil villains showed up.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: He acts like a spoiled child and throws temper tantrums when he doesn't get his way.note 
  • Bullying a Dragon: Pilaf has a really bad habit of doing this. Even with his PTSD of Goku, he still tries to fight him for his Dragon Balls. And he tries to treat King Piccolo, the freaking demon king, like a mook.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: His favorite way to deal with his subordinates when they fail him, like threatening to cut them in half or striking them with lightning. He also tried this with Goku and the others by attempting to burn them alive in a heated cell.
  • Comically Missing the Point: He thinks Mai is referring to "something else" when she talks about the "sack between [Goku's] legs", when she's actually referring to the sack that contains Goku's four-star Dragon Ball.
  • Death Trap: How he likes to deal with his enemies. Some of his traps include closing walls and tormenting his prisoners with a giant pinball maze.
  • Epic Fail: Pilaf has used the Dragon Balls no less than THREE times, and yet he is still not ruler of the world. At least, in the first case, you could say he was thwarted by Goku and his friends, but the other times, particularly the second, he had no such excuse. For instance, he summoned Shenron to grant them youth - to rule the world longer. He does. Likewise, they summon Shenron again when the Dragon Balls can make 2 wishes true, they are coerced into resurrecting Frieza by Sorbet, what he uses the second wish on? World domination as he's always dreamed? Immortality? Frieza's remains in the sun? Or a banquet? If you chose a banquet, then you've accurately described Pilaf's Skewed Priorities. Truly, a man too stupid to take the opportunity to Take Over the World is definitely a man not deserving of it.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: He sets King Piccolo lose in the hopes that he will either be able to control him or mooch off of his conquest. As soon as Piccolo doesn't need him anymore, he punts Pilaf and his gang off of their own airship.
  • Evil Overlord: Thinks he is this. He really is not.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Pilaf reacts with disgust when he learns from Bulma that she thought he would strip and violate her in order to garner information as to where the Dragon Balls were. He also reacts with disgust at some of Demon King Piccolo's actions, but wisely keeps his mouth shut.
    • Even he thinks that tossing a baby (Pan) out the window of an in-flight mech is a horrible thing to do.
      "I'm a villain, not a monster!"
  • Genius Ditz: Has invented a Dragon Radar-proof box so nobody could track what Dragon Balls he got his hands on (unless you go to a seer), and improved on Bulma's Dragon Radar. He is also the most successful at tracking down the Dragon Balls outside of Bulma, something that Sorbet notes. And he's still a ditz. In Super, he also helps Bulma with the time machine's programming to allow it to work, with the Manga version even modifying it to be able to travel between the infinite parallel timelines and futures, something which causes Bulma to state she has "a long way to go".
  • Genre Blindness: How could he not see that Demon King Piccolo had no intention in given him half of the world or even a fifth.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: He loses his temper easily and yells at others for their failings, even when it is mostly his fault.
  • Hidden Depths: Pilaf, of all people, is apparently very competent at computer programming.
  • Honor Before Reason: In Dragon Ball Super, despite the three of them having been starving for several days, Pilaf refuses to take any food from Bulma's party out of pride and orders Shu and Mai to do the same. He quickly changes his mind when Goten and Trunks bring them food, seeing it as an offering.
  • Horrible Judge of Character:
    • Mai questions whether it was a good idea to trust Piccolo in the first place after being betrayed.
    • He seems to have learned his lesson since he didn't trust Sorbet and Tagoma, but is forced to work with them. He even asked outright if they planned to kill them once they weren't needed anymore. Luckily for them, despite being part of Frieza's group, they are much nicer than King Piccolo.
  • Hypocritical Humor: He tends to be the first to chew out his minions for acting too low-brow, but will himself often sink to similar lowbrow and childish behavior himself.
  • Jerkass: He is an asshole, but unlike most villains, he cannot do anything about it. He mellows out considerably after becoming a child and moving into Bulma's, but his motives are usually still villainous.
  • Large Ham: Pilaf knows how to make math fun. When he, Trunks, Mai, and Shu are taking a math class, Trunks is asked to answer a math problem. When Pilaf notices Trunks failing to correctly figure out the problem by not following the order of operations, he gives the answer himself in the most over-the-top way possible, breaking out to sounding like he's trying to sell something.
  • Lethally Stupid: Who thought it was a good idea to release the devil who nearly caused the genocide of humanity last time? It says something when his minions actually had doubts about it.
  • The Napoleon: He is short, a recurring theme in the series.
  • Never My Fault: He blames all of his mistakes on his minions, even when they're clearly his fault.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: As silly and ridiculous Pilaf is, his oven prison cell came extremely close to killing the main characters in the first story arc. He's also responsible for releasing Demon King Piccolo, as well as just about all of GT and had a hand in resurrecting Frieza, though that one was against his will.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: He's a spoiled, Ax-Crazy brat, but has none of the physical power to exert it.
  • Rich in Dollars, Poor in Sense:
    • Given all the stuff he has built (his castle, flying fortress, death traps, and all his machines) he obviously has no cash flow problem. How he comes into such funds is never stated.
    • Subverted in the canon movies where he and his crew have fallen on hard times and work more than a few day jobs, despite being able to find the Dragon Balls almost as easily as Bulma. Shu also wished for one million zeni to stop King Cold from being revived.
  • Self-Deprecation: Pilaf has expressed his hatred of Doctor Slump (created by Akira Toriyama, creator of Dragon Ball), saying Shonen Jump became much more sophisticated after its cancellation.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: He fancies himself as an evil overlord but frankly, both Demon King Piccolo and Frieza have him beat in intelligence and brutality. He also uses the title of emperor, but Shuu and Mai appear to be his only subjects.
  • Smug Snake: Thinks he is much smarter and cleverer than he actually is.
  • Spoiled Brat: His whole motivation is based around sheer bratty entitlment.
  • Starter Villain: The first villain to last longer than a single episode and not become a good guy, but truly evil villains would not show up until near the end of the first half of the series.
  • Stupid Evil: Most of his schemes are petty revenge and relying on the latest gimmick at the time which backfires as Goku becomes more and more of a badass.
  • Surrounded by Idiots: He believes this, although his subordinates are (slightly) smarter than he.
  • Take Over the World: His life motive.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Due to his pettiness, he treats Demon King Piccolo like a Mook, and is lucky to only get thrown off his airship as a result.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom:
    • Or near-doom, at least, after releasing Demon King Piccolo.
    • In Resurrection 'F' they help revive Frieza with the Dragon Balls.
    • And in GT, he unintentionally caused the Earth to explode a year after using the Black Star Dragon Ballsnote  - even if he had made his original wish, he wouldn't have been able to rule over the Earth for that long anyway.
  • Villain Decay: He was never very competent, but he came close to killing Goku and his friends in the first story arc and was only foiled because he didn't know about Goku turning into a Great Ape. He also gave Goku a somewhat decent fight at the end of the Red Ribbon Army Saga. By the time King Piccolo shows up, Pilaf is little more than tech support and he disappears altogether in Z. In the canon movies and Super the heroes don't even recognize him anymore (although they are stuck in kids' bodies).
  • Yes-Man: To Demon King Piccolo. Piccolo sees right through it.


Mai (マイ)
Voiced by: Eiko Yamada (Japanese), Melodee Spevack (Harmony Gold dub), Teryl Rothery (BLT dub), Cynthia Cranz (Mystical Adventure), Julie Franklin (Funimation dub), Debbie Munroe (Blue Water), Colleen Clinkenbeard (Tenkaichi Budokai 3, Battle of Gods), Julie Maddalena (Bang Zoom!/Toonami Asia dub in Super) (English) Carola Vázquez (DB), Susana Moreno (Battle of Gods, Resurrection 'F', Super) (Latin American Spanish)

"Pilaf, may I remind you that we don't have time to shop today?"

Pilaf's female minion. She always works with Shu and, although she is intelligent, the two of them always manage to fail their objectives. She is a rather beautiful Asian looking woman, who always resorts to weaponry and technology; her serious tone (most of the time) is a foil to Shu's comic personality.

  • Accidental Pervert: When she mentions the "sack between the boy's legs". Pilaf is Comically Missing the Point and thinks Mai is referring to "something else", when she actually means Goku's sack that contains the four-star Dragon Ball.
  • Adaptational Badass: In Dragonball Evolution, her movie incarnation actively fights Goku.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Mai's eyes were black in the manga, but blue in the first anime series and was changed back to black in Battle of Gods/Super. This led to a Series Continuity Error when, in a flashback to the King Piccolo saga in Super, it shows Mai with blue eyes, despite the black eyes being overall consistent with manga.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Mai has a weird case of this. In the manga, she had no make-up, but the color editions gave her eyeliners, and the first anime gave her eyeliner and lipstick. She loses the make-up as a child in Super, and her future version reasonably doesn't have any to wear either. She's still seen as extremely beautiful from both Trunks's viewpoints and in the English dub, Goku tells Future Trunks that her future version is cute.
  • Aloof Dark-Haired Girl: She is taller than both her boss and her coworker (to a downright silly extent) she is calmer and more mature, and she has the long, dark hair.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • In the live-action movie Dragonball Evolution, she appears acting as Piccolo's dragon.
    • In Super, she gets a future counterpart.
  • Badass Longcoat: Mai has a long military coat on, but it's subverted in that she is a bumbling villain.
  • Characterization Marches On: At the start of the manga, Mai was introduced as a semi-competent lackey to an incompetent villain. When she gets reintroduced in Battle of Gods (and by extension, Super), she's easily as silly as her boss and Shu, enough that she goes along with their shenanigans. This is not helped by the fact that all of them were de-aged into children.
  • Co-Dragons: With Shu to Pilaf in the original series.
  • Everyone Has Standards: When the gang accidentally kidnaps Pan in Super, as their mech was exploding, her only concern was Pan's safety.
  • Evil Counterpart: At a certain point she was one for Bulma. Bulma was a girl who was looking for the Dragon Balls to be able to have a boyfriend (although it was something absurd, it wasn't wrong), whereas Mai looked for the Dragon Balls to make her boss Pilaf become the king of the world. Bulma was a smart girl but she had her moments when she could act something ridiculous, and Mai was a girl who acted in a more serious of the Pilaf gang but in reality she was clumsy as the rest of her comrades. Although Bulma had a great interest in men and romance (which was the reason why she wanted to ask for a boyfriend), Mai has a very conservative view of romance and in previous sagas she showed no interest in any man (except in Super where she showed interest in Future Trunks).
  • Oblivious to Love: Poor Present Trunks's love-struck behavior just comes off as weird to her. She does seem to like him though.
    • Averted in the movie versions; Mai is open about Trunks being her boyfriend at the end of Battle of the Gods and Resurrection F.
  • Only Sane Man: Mai compared to the rest of Pilaf's gang. She tends to point out all the flaws in Pilaf's plans.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: Mai has been shown to be somewhat proficient in firearms and hand-to-hand, but the setting of Dragon Ball being as it is, her combat record hasn't exactly been stellar.
  • Pet the Dog: In an episode of Super, Mai, Shu, and Pilaf have accidentally kidnapped baby Pan in their new fighting mech, and it's going out of control due to Pilaf angrily smashing a button on the control panel. As they all scream in fear of their lives, Mai claims she doesn't care what happens to Pilaf, Shu, or herself, just let the baby survive.
  • So Last Season: In Battle of Gods, Mai threatens Trunks and Son Gohan with a gun... which would've been ineffective even at the start of the series, let alone now. The entire cast laughs, thinking it's a skit. The only actual danger came from the fact that Gohan didn't control the ricochets and Videl, pretty much one of the few people there who could actually be injured by them, did indeed get injured.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Mai, to Future Trunks. She stares at him from the bushes while he's thinking about Black, though she's too embarrassed to talk to him directly. This is partly a result of Trunks having held her hand beforehand, being glad she's all right and talking about how much her Future counterpart meant to him - being Older Than She Looks, the hand-holding definitely made an impression on Mai, semi-similar to Present Trunks's 'bold' approach.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Mai dwarfs her teammates, who only come up to her knees. This remains true to a lesser extent when they're all de-aged, as Mai's a full head taller than both Pilaf and Shu.
  • Token Human: Mai is the only regular human in the group.
  • Wasteful Wishing: When Sorbet summons Shenron, she wishes for "the world's best ice cream". In her defense, she hadn't had any for a while and prevented one of the wishes from being used for bringing back King Cold as well as Frieza.

     Shu / Soba 

Shu (シュー, Shū), originally Soba (ソバ) in the Japanese manga
Voiced by: Tessho Genda (Japanese), Dave Mallow (Harmony Gold dub), Doug Parker (BLT dub), Justin Cook (Mystical Adventure), Chris Cason (Funimation dub), Jonathan Love (Blue Water dub), Tom Bauer (Bang Zoom!/Toonami Asia in Super) Ricardo Hill (DB), Luis Daniel Ramírez (GT), Miguel Ángel Leal (Battle of Gods, Resurrection 'F', Super) (Latin American)

"Are we gonna retreat?"

An anthropomorphic dog and Pilaf's ninja lackey. He and Mai usually work together to carry out the work of their short-tempered boss.

  • Adaptation Name Change: Word of God is that the anime producers asked Akira Toriyama to name Pilaf's henchmen, and, forgetting he'd already named the dog fellow "Soba," Toriyama rattled off "Shu" and "Mai." Toriyama decided to roll with it and he became "Shu" in the manga too.
  • Co-Dragons: With Mai to Pilaf in the original series.
  • Funny Animal: He's a walking talking dog who dresses like a ninja.
  • Hidden Depths: Shu is a ninja after all. He watches Future Trunks doing image training and tells Mai how it works.
  • Ninja: Shu is a ninja dog. While depicted as incompetent most of the time, as shown in the Future Trunks Saga, he has knowledge of the basics.
  • Wasteful Wishing: He wishes for 1 million Zeni when Sorbet summons Shenron. While better than what Mai wished for, he could have wished for almost anything. At least he stole the second wish from Sorbet, preventing King Cold from being revived.

Red Ribbon Army

     In General 

Red Ribbon Army (レッドリボン軍, Reddo Ribon Gun)

An evil organization headed by Commander Red. They get wind of the Dragon Balls and use any means to collect them, including taking innocent life. Goku practically decimates them by himself after they get in his way one too many times.

  • Colourful Theme Naming: Almost every major member of the army is named after a color, the exceptions being Captain Dark (as some official sources imply that his name is actually pronounced as "Dock," as in the structure ships stop at) and Dr. Gero (who was created years after the rest of the characters).
  • The Dreaded: They were known as the most powerful and evil army in the world. Their influence was so vast that Bulma said that the real military could do nothing against them. Goku's friends were fearful for his life once they learned he was going to storm the Red Ribbon Army Base.
  • Dirty Coward: Honor is a pretty rare quality among the ranks of the RR. They prefer to dispose of their victims in sneaky, brutal ways, and when things don't go their way, they turn tail and run.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: They hire homosexuals, cyborgs, animal people and women, but to Red, they're all expendable.
  • Evil Army: The first of two evil organizations in the series to feature a large variety of villains in its roster, they are the weaker one as the latter in Z are an intergalactic planet ring ruled by a psychotic monster of a Bad Boss.
  • Evil Is Petty: Red's goal is use the balls to grow taller; understandably, Black kills him because he has ordered death for failure and many of their men had died for a pathetic desire.
  • The Ghost: There's a few brief mentions of "General Copper", who is apparently a very high-ranking official on the same level as Blue and White, but he's never actually seen.
  • Mooks: The average solider within the army. Even an average level martial artist can take them down.
  • Mook Horror Show: What Goku subjects them to when he invades their base. Nothing they did slowed him down. They shot him with snipers, shot rockets at him, brought out tanks and jets, and Goku easily took them out. It got to the point that solders chose to run and risk execution instead of fighting Goku.
  • Mook Mobile: A lot of them ride helicopters or other vehicles. This doesn't seem to help their survival rate as Goku typically explodes helicopters (presumably killing the pilot); in comparison, Foot Soldiers are almost always just knocked out by Goku.
  • N.G.O. Superpower: They have vast resources and technology, having such things as tanks, aircraft, submarines, androids, and Mini-Mecha. At one point, Bulma states outright that Earth's actual military doesn't stand a chance against them and that the Daizenshuu states were responsible for producing 16% of the world's vehicles.
  • A Nazi by Any Other Name: General Blue's soldiers wear the uniform. Though as mentioned above, they entirely believe in Equal-Opportunity Evil. Oh, and just like the Nazis (and to a slightly lesser extent, the Soviets),note  they also intend to find magical occult items (in this case, the Dragon Balls) to further their plans of world conquest.
  • Post-Final Boss: After Goku defeats General Blue (their strongest soldier, and the only one actually capable of fighting Goku) and Tao Pai Pai ( the worlds' most feared assassin, hired specifically to tace care of Goku), pretty much everyone else left in the army at this point is one for him.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Dr. Gero was their head scientist and said by canon materials to be the one who built their weaponry, including Android 8. We never see or hear of him, or know he exists at all, until the Android Saga, yet he's apparently well known among scientists like the Briefs family.
  • The Remnant: By the time of Z, Dr. Gero and his Androids are technically this. The Red Ribbon Army is long defunct as an organisation, but Gero, one of its founding members, tries to continue the cause, though with a heavy focus on killing Goku, partly because Gero wants revenge because Goku is responsible for the Army's defeat in the original Dragon Ball, though it's also out of practicality, since Goku would likely interfere anyway. In both Trunks' timeline and in the regular timeline, his plans are a bit too effective in so many ways, but Gero never lives to see it happen. It's not drawn attention to, but the Red Ribbon Army iconography is notable on all of Gero's androids except Cell. The Red Ribbon Army as an organization serve as the main antagonists of Dragon Ball Fighter Z, even if it's basically just Android 21 at that point.
    • Attack of the Saiyans also features a Remnant of Red Ribbon Army Soliders​ lead by General White as minor antagonists for the Z Fighters to deal with during the one year time period between Raditz's defeat and the arrival of the other Sayians.
  • Reused Character Design: Commander Red and Staff Officer Black doppelgangers later cameo in Z as a director and producer of a Great Saiyaman film.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After Black's defeat, the rest of the Red Ribbon Army scatters. And even before Black's defeat most of the army started running, even when they were threatened with execution.
  • Take Over the World: Why they are after the dragon balls. Commander Red's real goal is just to become taller.
  • You Have Failed Me: The standard military code of the Red Ribbon Army is this—and they have an extremely broad definition of "failure". Including failing to dodge Commander Red's cat that randomly attacks people who enter his office.

     Commander Red 

Commander Red (レッド総帥, Reddo Sousui)
Voiced by: Kenji Utsumi (Japanese), Josh Martin (Funimation dub), Noah Umholtz (Blue Water dub), Roberto Sen (Latin American)

An eyepatch-wearing dwarf who created the Red Ribbon Army to fulfill his dream of ruling the world. Commander Red led the Red Ribbons up until Goku's final assault on his compound; then, his number-two, Staff Officer Black, killed him when Red admitted that the real reason he wanted the Dragon Balls was not to rule the world, but just to become taller. In Dragon Ball Online, he returns centuries later, rebuilt as "Android 9", and creates the new Red Pants Army.

  • Accent Adaptation: He speaks in an Irish accent in the beginning of his appearances in the English dub. The Irish accent goes away over the course of the series as he ends up mainly using an American one. In Path to Power, he only speaks with an American accent.
  • Adaptational Badass: In the anime he's initially built up as a more intimidating Bond villain type, while in the manga he's a bit of a joke from his first scene. His height and even his face isn't revealed for several episodes, he has a violent cat-like pet and he's fantastic at pool and golf. He also makes a direct attempt to personally kill both Goku and Officer Black himself during their first fight {Which would have worked if it wasn't for the former's immense power and the latter being knocked out the window just in time}, something his manga counterpart never did.
  • Adaptational Intelligence: Downplayed, but in the anime Red was at least smart enough to not brag directly​ to Officer Black about his true plan, and only did so in an act of Evil Gloating to himself after he thought he had succeeded in killing both Goku and Black.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: He has white hair and a red eye patch in the manga, but red hair and a black eye patch in the anime.
  • Arc Villain: Of the Red Ribbon Army Saga.
  • Bad Boss: He has his men executed for any kind of failure, which comes across as even worse when his wish is really petty and not worth the sacrifices. As mentioned above, he has a very wide definition of failure; for example, if a mook isn't fast enough to dodge a vicious cat he randomly sics on him and loses an eye, he's done for.
  • Bad Guys Play Pool: And golf and pinball.
  • Bait-and-Switch Boss: He's built up as the main villain for the entire Red Ribbon Army arc, only to be killed by Black seconds before Goku appears in his office.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: He sees himself commanding an army that can take over the world and hunts down the Dragon Balls for his own vanity. He is brought down almost singlehandedly by Goku and is killed by Officer Black when he learns the real reason why Red wanted the Dragon Balls.
  • Boom, Headshot!: How he met his end.
  • Bullying a Dragon: After the events of Muscle Tower, he knew exactly how strong Goku was and what he was capable of. That still didn't stop him from sending thieves, his generals, and a renowned assassin to kill Goku. Once it went too far, Goku decided to wipe the army out. To Red's credit, two of the men he sent after Goku (Blue and Mercenary Tao) were actually capable of killing Goku and almost did so.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: Red, after his hair. Presumably the army is named after him.
  • Disney Villain Death: In The Path to Power, Officer Black fatally wounds him by shooting him in the chest, causing Red to stumble off the rail and fall to his death.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: In The Path to Power, he has General Blue executed and claims that he did so because of Blue's failure to get the last Dragon Ball, but it's heavily implied that he was using this as an convenient excuse and that the real reason he had Blue killed was because he walked up to Red to hand the Dragon Balls to him and stood over him, angering Red's Height Angst.
  • Evil Is Petty: Everything he does is just so he wants to grow taller; when he finds this out, Black is understandably outraged that he wasted so much time and effort on such a stupid goal and blows his brains out.
  • Evil Redhead: He is a red-haired man who is the boss of the evilest army in the world.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Does nothing but point out that he's bad.
  • Fatal Flaw: His vanity and pride. He gets several people in his army killed searching for the Dragon Balls, and it's all for him to get taller so women will like him. He's so vain that he sees nothing wrong with telling Officer Black this and expects no consequences for his actions. His pride also prevents him from retreating when Goku raids the base. He could easily leave the Dragon Balls, retreat, and rebuild the Red Ribbon Army, but he refuses to be beaten by a mere child. Which leads to his breakdown where he reveals his real goal for the Dragon Balls to Black.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Occasionally puts up a more affable persona when talking to or complementing his men, but it's clearly an act and he's nothing more than a petty, murderous manchild whose actions are even worse when his true goal is revealed. It's especially noticeable when he complements one of his henchmen and then immediately threatens to have them executed for not performing his requested task perfectly.
  • Freudian Excuse: According to his bio in the Daizenshuu, Red's reason for his hatred of his own size is because he was bullied at Elementary school because of it.
  • Height Angst: He was so angsty about his height that intended to use the eponymous objects, not to complete his world takeover, but to wish himself taller.
  • I Am the Noun: When Black tells him that his selfishness will doom the Red Ribbon Army:
    Commander: I am the Red Ribbon Army! What's good for me is good for everyone, and I want to be taller!
  • Identical Stranger: A guy who looks exactly like Red, but without an eyepatch, shows up as a hotheaded film director in the Great Saiyaman Saga of Dragon Ball Z.
  • Jerkass: Killed hundreds if not thousands of people, including his own men, just so he could become taller.
  • Kick the Dog: When Black calls him out for all the mooks they've lost and sacrificed just to wish to be taller, Red tells him it was worth all that and more. This led to Black's decision to kill him and take over.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: His own cruelty to others, including his men, comes back to bite him in the end. He tells Tao to kill anyone that gets in his way since he will pay him. This leads to Tao murdering Bora in coldblood, changing Goku's focus from just finding his grandpa's Dragon Ball to finding all of them so he can wish Bora back to life. It also made Goku become even stronger since he had to fight Tao to take back the Dragon Balls he took. By the time Goku comes to the Red Ribbon Army base, they're all but defenseless against him since all of their best men were already defeated or executed, causing Red to have a Villainous Breakdown and reveal his real intentions for the Dragon Balls to Black. Once Black learns the truth, he promptly shoots Red in the head.
  • Mugging the Monster: At the beginning, he had no clue who Goku was, thinking he was just some kid who was getting way over his head looking for the Dragon Balls. It isn't until Goku destroys Muscle Tower that he has a clue that Goku is no ordinary child.
  • The Napoleon: He deploys the full forces of his worldwide and heavily-armed criminal organization to find the Dragon Balls... so he could be taller.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Him contracting Mercenary Tao to kill Goku completely backfired. Because Tao murdered one of Goku's friends, it changed Goku's focus from searching for the Four-Star Dragon Ball to finding all of them. He also forced Goku to become much stronger to beat Tao, which made him close to invincible when he came to the Red Ribbon Army base. He also made the mistake of making things personal with Goku, which made Goku more ruthless since he wanted to destroy the Red Ribbon Army instead of simply taking the Dragon Balls.
  • Non-Action Big Bad: He doesn't really fight anyone; he just barks orders at his subordinates.
  • Pet the Dog: Was planning on preparing a massive meal for Tao Pai Pai as a bonus for killing Goku and bringing the latter's four Dragon Balls to him. Given that Tao didn't ask for this and Red's general personality, it stands out as a rare moment of genuine gratitude from him.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: Acts somewhat childish at times.
  • Right-Hand Cat: Is occasionally seen with his pet while sitting, though it looks more like a mogwai than a cat and has a bad temper.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: His suit's so nice that the player can wear it in Dragon Ball Xenoverse.
  • Smug Snake: Fancies himself as a genius and claims that his petty goal will somehow allow his army to conquer the world.
  • The Sociopath: For a small time villain, he is probably the first true sociopath in the series. He send scores of his men to their deaths searching for the Dragon Balls all for his own vanity. When Officer Black calls him out on this, he sees nothing wrong with throwing away people's lives to get what he wants. He also regularly executes his men for small offenses without batting an eye.
  • Surrounded by Idiots: He thinks this, but he's no better than his subordinates.
  • The Unfought: As a result of Black killing him just before Goku arrives.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Refused to surrender the Dragon Balls, despite knowing that he could not stop Goku and bragging about his real goal to Staff Officer Black.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Commander Red's ridiculously mundane and selfish desire to become tall not only cost hundreds if not thousands of lives, but his creation of the Red Ribbon Army led to Frappe and Gero creating the androids. The repercussions of this were not realized until over 20 years after his death and continued for another decade. This set Disaster Dominoes up that lead to both the Bad Future, Cell's feasting on multiple cities and the near destruction of the solar system, and Zamasu's mortal killing rampage and resulting destruction of an entire timeline.
  • Vain: The real reason why he wanted the Dragon Balls, he wants to be taller.
  • Villainous Breakdown: He has long one after Goku comes to the Red Ribbon Army base and begins to wreck it while searching for the Dragon Balls. The breakdown causes him to reveal his real plan for the Dragon Balls to Officer Black, which ends up getting him killed.
  • Villainous Legacy: For a character who ends up being such a joke he has a rather massive one in the form of Dr. Gero who in turn has one through his creations.
  • Wasteful Wishing: He spent all that time and resources going after the Dragon Balls simply so he could wish for height.
  • We Can Rebuild Him: His resurrection as Android 9.
  • We Have Reserves: He has his men executed for even the slightest transgressions, and when his real goal is revealed, openly admitted to Staff Officer Black that he'll gladly throw every last soldier's life away as long as he can get his wish. This is the final straw for Black who kills him on the spot.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Even before he knew how strong Goku was, he still had his men try to kill him to get his Dragon Ball.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: He thought Master Roshi was the scientist who built the Dragon Radar because he was an old man.

     Adjutant Black / Staff Officer Black 

Adjutant Black / Staff Officer Black (ブラック補佐, Burakku Hosa [manga]; ブラック参謀, Burakku Sanbō [anime])
Voiced by: Masaharu Sato (Japanese), Christopher Sabat (Funimation dub), Jonathan Love (Blue Water dub); Salvador Delgado (DB), José Luis Castañeda (Path to Power) (Latin American)

The second-in-command of the Red Ribbon Army. Black puts up with years of verbal abuse from Commander Red due to his loyalty to the Red Ribbons' goal of conquering the world, but finally snaps when Red admits that he wasted hundreds of lives getting the Dragon Balls just so he could become taller. He executes Red for insubordination and assumes command of the Red Ribbon Army, but is quickly defeated by Goku.

  • Adaptational Badass: Like most characters in The Path to Power, Black gets a major power-up thanks to his battle mech. In the series proper Black's Battle Jacket gives Goku some problems, but is easily dealt with. In the movie, that Battle Jacket is now a building size mech that can fire a giant laser and tank a Kamehameha that is strong enough to wipe out an armada. It's also loaded with missiles that are powerful enough to knock out Goku. He even manages to kill Android 8 by crushing him and he's stronger than Goku. It takes Goku's losing his temper and reaching into his latent power to defeat Black.
  • Ambiguously Brown: In The Path to Power, he is several shades lighter than he was in the original manga and anime.
  • Ax-Crazy: In The Path to Power, he goes completely nuts after finding out Commander Red's true wish, and starts blowing up the entire RRA base while laughing manically. He also takes far more joy in attempting to kill Goku then his canon counterpart did.
  • Bad Boss: He isn't in charge long before he show signs of this. Despite executing Commander Red for throwing away lives for his own vanity, he's willing to destroy the entire base along with his remaining men just to kill Goku. And earlier, he approves of executing General Blue, despite him bring back a Dragon Radar that is smaller and far more accurate than theirs. Though the manga averts the former example due to the base being completely deserted by that point.
  • Bald, Black Leader Guy: He briefly becomes leader after he shot Red and before Goku killed him.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Once he kills Red, he claims that he will lead the army into a new era of greatness and take over the world. He is killed within only a few minutes of taking command by Goku.
  • Blatant Lies: In the dub, Black tells Goku he just wants to make peace and has no ill-intentions for the Dragon Balls. Even someone as naive as Goku doesn't buy this.
  • Breather Boss: Officer Black was this to Goku In-Universe since Mercenary Tao was a much tougher fight.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Despite telling Commander Red that they can't possible win against Goku and begs him to retreat, he tries to fight Goku in a Battle Jacket. It cost him his life.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: Black, for his dark skin (insensitive to Western audiences, but just a somewhat lazy pun in Japan), like all the other color names.
  • The Dog Bites Back: He had enough of Red after Red intended to essentially demolish his own army just to get taller and killed him.
  • Disappointed by the Motive: He is not pleased to find out that Red wasted so much time and resources on finding the Dragon Balls just so he could make himself taller.
  • The Dragon: Till he offs Red for wanting to be taller thinking that is needed for world domination.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: He kills Red, since the latter jeopardized the whole organization by wishing for something so useless that it caused the downfall of the group, and that he didn't care how many died to achieve it.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: He offers to work together with Goku to use the Dragon Balls to revive Bora, but Goku shoots him down. He seems to have never imagined that a kid like him would refuse to work with a criminal organization.
  • Hyper-Competent Sidekick: Black is much smarter than Commander Red.
  • Hypocrite: He insists to Red that they can't possibly beat Goku and it's best to just give him the Dragon Balls and escape... and yet immediately after killing Red, he refuses to escape himself and takes on Goku in a Mini-Mecha. On top of that, despite executing Commander Red for throwing away the lives of their men for his own vanity, Black proves to be just as much of a Bad Boss when he decides to nuke the entire base along with his remaining men, just to get rid of Goku.
  • Identical Stranger: Like Red, Black's character design reappears years later as a film producer in Dragon Ball Z.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Tries to nuke the base with a missile, when many of his own men were still there.
    • In The Path to Power, he brags about killing Android 8 to a crying Goku. This does not end well for him.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: He does this to Red after the latter had gladly killed off soldier after soldier to get taller.
  • Mini-Mecha: The Battle Jacket he uses to fight Goku.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: More in the anime then the manga. In the latter, Black shoots Red instantly once he learns what Red's true motivations for Dragon Balls are. In the anime, Red sends Black to fight Goku as a last line of defense while he hides away in a panic room. As the two battle, Red springs a trap and tries to crush the both of them in the room. Black survives (ironiclly thanks to Goku knocking him out of the way) and comes back just in time to hear Red gloating about his wish. When he confronts him on it, Red gets too uppity and eventually snaps that Black is nothing more then a toadie meant to serve him. Cue instant headshot.
  • Not What I Signed on For: He is anything but pleased to discover that Red expended so much time and resources on finding the Dragon Balls simply because he wanted to wish to get taller.
  • Only Sane Man: Was the one to suggest to Commander Red that he should just surrender the Dragon Balls and escape. Too bad he didn't follow his own advice.
  • Punny Name: In the Japanese anime, he's called "Black Sanbō" (sanbō meaning "staff officer"), as in The Story of Little Black Sambo.
  • Race Lift: He is made only slightly tanned in the Path to Power film.
  • Scary Black Man:
    • Subverted, despite the hilariously insensitive name. He's as dangerous as his position expects, but also probably the sanest Red Ribbon Army officer.
    • Played straight in the Path to Power special, where he lapses into a Villainous Breakdown after having killed Red. However, he's more tan than black in said special.
  • The Starscream: At first Black is completely loyal to Commander Red, but upon finding out Red's true wish (and in the anime, Red's attempt at killing both him and Goku) he executes Commander Red for basically ruining the Red Ribbon Army for his own selfish ends, going on to fight Goku after offing his former boss.
  • Stating the Simple Solution: He tells Red it's best to just leave the Dragon Balls to Goku, escape while they can, and rebuild the army at a later date. For some reason, he doesn't take his own advice after he becomes the new commander.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After Goku kicked a missile that was powerful enough to destroy the entire Red Ribbon Army base, Black decides to cut his losses and run. Unfortunately for him, Goku isn't merciful enough to let him escape and he dies in his battle suit.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Even with a battle suit, he should had known that he could not beat Goku. It becomes even dumber since he recommended several times to retreat to Commander Red.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: He seems noticeably nicer before killing Commander Red, being concerned for others and being an Only Sane Man. Once he takes over as the Big Bad and engages Goku, he's just as much of a villain as any other Red Ribbon member.
  • Treacherous Advisor: Subverted. He actually was very loyal to the Red Ribbon Army, and used to be very loyal to Commander Red. He didn't think to betray Red until after overhearing the fact that Red was actually intending to use the Dragon Balls to grow taller, and even then only because Red's actions were going to kill off the Red Ribbon Army.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: After Goku survives his final attack, he tries to make a run for it. But Goku promptly smashes through his bot, killing him in the explosion.
  • Villainous Breakdown: It started when Goku storms the base, and learning of Red's motivations just makes him snap.
  • We Can Rule Together: Tries this with Goku after he kills Commander Red, even offering to help Goku gather the Dragon Balls and revive Bora. Goku turns him down cold and tells him to just turn himself in to the police. Black responds by shooting Goku.

     Colonel Silver 

Colonel Silver (シルバー大佐, Shirubaa Taisa)
Voiced by: Banjo Ginga (Japanese), Christopher Sabat (Funimation dub), Ben Jeffery (Blue Water dub), Mario Castañeda (Latin American)

The first member of the Red Ribbon Army to go up against Goku. He steals a Dragon Ball from Pilaf and temporarily destroys Goku's Flying Nimbus.

  • Affably Evil: He is calm, professional, does not immediately resort to violence, and bears Goku no personal grudge. In the Funimation dub, he is even polite to civilians — though he will still kill them without mercy.
  • Ascended Extra: Appears earlier and has a larger role in the anime than in the manga.
  • Badass Longcoat: He wears a long blue coat that goes pass his knees and he is one of the Red Ribbon Army's strongest fighters.
  • Badass Normal: He is very strong for a human, being able to defeat several world class boxers without being touched. Too bad for him that he's beneath Goku's notice and is taken out with one tail whip to the face.
  • BFG: Carries a bazooka and uses it to shoot down the Nimbus.
  • Boxing Battler: He fights like a boxer. In the anime he's shown knocking out four professional boxers with a single punch.
  • Break the Fake: Does this with a fake Dragon Ball after a store owner attempts to con them into buying it.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: The only member of the army whose color name doesn't reference his appearance in some way.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: He doesn't even come close to defeating Goku who easily sidesteps his attacks and manages to knock Silver out only using his tail!.
  • Enraged by Idiocy: Calls Black an imbecile for thinking he has time to sit and wait for backup as Pilaf's flying fortress emerges, and repeatedly abuses radio communicators.
  • Evil Redhead: Although he's one of the nicer members of the Red Ribbon Army since he doesn't kill out of sadism, he's still a ruthless guy who will murder innocents to get his way.
  • The Coats Are Off: Removes his trench coat during his fight with Goku.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: He has a rather ugly scar across his chest.
  • Honesty Is the Best Policy: Silver kills the conman for lying to his face. He also tells Black and Red everything about his defeat. Yep. I was knocked out by a 12-year-old.
  • No Shirt, Long Jacket: Doesn't wear a shirt under his long jacket.
  • Reused Character Design: Maron, Krillin's temporary girlfriend in "Z", eventually leaves Krillin for a rich guy that looks an awful lot like Silver.
  • Rugged Scar: Has a nasty scar on his chest.
  • Scarf of Asskicking: Wears a scarf while he's in action.

     General White 

General White (ホワイト将軍, Howaito Shougun)
Voiced by: Tessho Genda (Japanese), Kyle Hebert (Funimation dub), Ryan Luhning (Blue Water); Roberto Sen (DB), Rafael Rivera (Path to Power) (Latin American)

A Red Ribbon leader searching for a Dragon Ball in the snowy arctic, General White built a fortress called Muscle Tower, kidnapped a nearby village's leader, and forced the townsfolk to comb the landscape for the Dragon Ball. His retinue of followers almost had Goku on the ropes, but Android 8 defeated him and saved Goku.

  • A Twinkle in the Sky: What Eighter did to him after he shot Goku in the back of the head.
  • Accent Adaptation: A Russian one in the English dub.
  • Bullying a Dragon: He repeatedly mouths off to Eighter, belittling and mocking his compassionate nature and blowing off his pleas to resolve things peacefully. He inevitably pushes Eighter to his Rage Breaking Point after shooting Goku; first standing up to him and declaring he's not afraid of the furious android, he soon caves in and freaks out, especially when his gun turns out to be out of ammo, and is punched out of Muscle Tower and into the horizon.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: White, for his hair, although it's bluish in the anime.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Tried to fight Goku, thinking he was weak from his trials in Muscle Tower. Goku was weakened, but not enough to make a difference.
    • His "fight" with Eighter, if you can even call it that. Eighter sent him flying with just one punch.
  • Dirty Communists: General White has a Russian accent, and if that's not enough, most of his footsoldiers are wearing Red Army commando uniforms.
  • Dirty Coward: Takes the mayor hostage by gunpoint when he realize that he couldn't win against Goku.
  • Disney Villain Death/Made of Iron/No One Could Survive That!: He made the big mistake of harming Goku in front of Eighter, ends up punched out the window and several miles through the sky into a mountain. Going General Blue's offhanded comment about needing to apologize to White (done in a way that made it seem that he was still alive) and his appearance in Attack of the Saiyans, he survived.
  • General Ripper: Has no problem trying to kill a kid, using villagers for slave labor, and killing innocents to find the Dragon Ball. He even planned to kill all the villagers once he did find the Dragon Ball, which was why Android 8 hid it from him.
  • Husky Russkie: He is physically the largest of the Red Ribbon officers Goku goes up against (though also physically the weakest).
  • Jerkass: He was going to execute all the villagers after they found the Dragon Ball. He also outright tells Eighter that his compassionate nature disgusts him.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Continuously belittled and mocked Eighter for being a failure. He was also the one who ordered Murasaki to press Eighter's self-destruct button.
    • He planned to execute the villagers once he found the Dragon Balls, which was why Android 8 hid it from the army.
  • Oh, Crap!: Has a moment like this when he realizes just how bad of an idea it was to shoot Goku in front of Eighter.
  • Sadistic Choice: Try to make Eighter decide between killing Goku or him killing the mayor.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: His followers—Major Metallitron, Ninja Murasaki, Android 8 (who pulled a Heel–Face Turn), and Buyon.
  • You Gotta Have Purple Hair
  • Virtue Is Weakness: He's disgusted by Eighter's compassion, declaring him a technological failure for it. During his final fight with Goku, he openly tells Eighter that his pleas for compassion and non-violence make him sick.
  • Vodka Drunkenski: Given his implied Russian heritage as well as his sometimes drinking from a flask that presumably contained vodka.
  • Would Hurt a Child: He shoots Goku in the back of the head when he's trying to defend Android 8 and the Mayor. Even worse, he planned to execute the entire village once he found the Dragon Ball.

     Ninja Murasaki / Sergeant Major Purple 

Murasaki (ムラサキ曹長, Murasaki Sōchō)
Voiced by: Takeshi Aono (Japanese), Duncan Brannan (Funimation dub), Zane Sampson (Blue Water dub), Pedro D'Aguillón Jr. (Latin American)

A half-competent ninja mercenary hired by General White. Despite his relative weakness, he has an impressive repertoire of tricks and proves a wily foe—he is the first Red Ribbon villain whom Goku takes more than one episode to beat. He survives Goku's assault on Muscle Tower and comes back to finish Goku off soon after, but Goku unknowingly tosses a bomb at him and he hasn't been seen since.

  • Ass Shove: What happened when he landed on Goku's Power Pole. To make it even more painful, he accidentally jerks it around when he hits against a tree and Goku yanks it right out when he wants it back.
  • Butt-Monkey: Throughout their entire fight, he's basically nothing but Goku's plaything, and endures one humiliation after another.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: Murasaki is Japanese for purple. Notably, all the other Red Ribbon Army color names are English, but his is Japanese, presumably because he's a ninja.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: His entire "fight" with Goku more or less consisted of Murasaki becoming his plaything for several episodes. Goku could have beaten him at any time, but was just having too much fun.
  • Dies Differently in Adaptation: In the manga, Murasaki is never seen again after Goku knocks him out, and is presumably killed when Muscle Tower collapses. In the anime, he survives the fall of Muscle Tower and is instead killed when Android 8's bomb explodes in his face.
  • Dirty Old Man: Murasaki has a lot of girlie magazines in his quarters. In addition, he also secretly took pictures of two women changing into ninja outfits, two women who were also heavily implied to be General White's sisters.
  • Doppelgänger Spin: Subverted as they are actually his quintuplet brothers.
  • The Dragon: To General White. He is far stronger than White and is the only one besides Major Metallitron and Buyon to actually hurt Goku. Which isn't saying much.
  • Dragon Their Feet: In an anime-only​ event, he makes one last attempt to kill Goku and Android 8 even after General White has been defeated and Muscle Tower has been destroyed, and it takes being blown up​ by Android 8's self-destruct bomb to finally put him down for good.
  • Dub Name Change: The European Spanish dub changes his name to General Purple, apparently in order to fit the name line of his colleague. The Viz manga translates his name literally as Sergeant Major Purple.
  • Fragile Speedster: He relies mainly on speed and confusing his opponents. When it comes to actual battle, Goku takes him and his brothers out in a single punch each.
  • Humiliation Conga: Almost his entire fight with Goku is this. He lands on Goku's Power Pole, gets bested in hide-and-seek and racing, gets his favorite sword broken, and eventually one-shotted by Goku after he attempted to blow up Android 8. And if you count the filler, he gets buried in an avalanche and get blown up by a bomb which he may or may not have survived.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Goku never took this guy seriously, until he tried to destroy Android 8.
  • Iron Butt-Monkey: A lot of bad stuff happens to this guy but he always seems to recover. He even might have survived Android 8's bomb.
  • Killed Off for Real: In the anime, Goku unwittingly throws Android's self-destruct bomb at him (while he was trapped in the snow). The bomb detonates before he could get it off, resulting in an explosion of blood as the narrator quips, "It's always nice to end a story with a bang!" Despite this, Murasaki reappears in video games and does not reappear in GT at all, not even in the Super 17 arc, where the Hell residents escape.
  • Laughably Evil: He tries so hard to be serious, but he can't catch a break being Goku's Butt-Monkey.
  • Ninja: Subverted in that he is a bumbling idiot.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: At times he can be dangerous. He would've self-destructed Android 8 if Goku hadn't intervened.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: He can shatter rocks with a sword strike, and actually succeeded in hitting Goku in the nape with a bladed Precision-Guided Boomerang. His problem is that Goku is superior to him in everything and tough enough to survive that blade.
  • Porn Stash: And Goku found it.
  • Smug Snake: He is not as strong as he likes to believe, especially compared to Goku who literally plays with him.
  • Stock Ninja Weaponry: He had a sword, daggers, and everything else you expect to find on a ninja.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In the anime filler, he holds Suno hostage to blackmail Dr. Frappe.

     Sergeant Metallic / Major Metallitron 

Sergeant Metallic / Major Metallitron (メタリック軍曹, Metarikku Gunsō)
Voiced by: Shin Aomori (Japanese), Chris Rager, Christopher Sabat (Path to Power) (Funimation dub), David Kaye (Ocean dub), Gerardo Reyero (Latin American)

A massive soldier who Goku fights in Muscle tower. Turns out to be a robot, and the first combatant in that arc that provides Goku with a serious challenge.

  • Adaptational Wimp: In Path to Power Goku defeats him by punching his head off, something that in the manga and anime barely slowed it down.
  • The Ahnold: Is clearly based on Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Terminator.
  • An Arm and a Leg: After launching one of its arms, Goku disables the other, but it keeps attacking with its feet.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: Metallic, though the theme is broken in the dub in favor of alliteration.
  • Cranial Processing Unit: Averted. It loses its head to no apparent disadvantage.
  • Dub Name Change: Renamed "Major Metallitron" in the English anime dub and "Full Metal Jacket" in the manga.
  • Implacable Man: It just keeps coming, no matter what Goku does to it. It finally stops when its batteries run out.
  • No-Sell: Although Goku is able to cause superficial damage, nothing he can do stops the robot until its batteries run out.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Look like the Terminator, shoots a rocket out of his mouth and repeats the same sentence, yes he is a robot alright.
  • Robo Cam: A POV shot shows a visual overlay of Gratuitous English text, which also identifies Goku as an alien.
  • Robotic Reveal: After Goku kicks its head off, it keeps attacking, showing that it's actually a robot. More of its chassis is revealed after it tanks a kamehameha.
  • Rocket Punch: Resorts to this when its body is damaged by a kamehameha. Unlike most examples of the trope, the fist doesn't return and is useless after firing.
  • Scary Black Man: He gets Race Lifted into one in Path to Power, in a reversal of Staff Officer Black's own Race Lift.
  • Terminator Impersonator: A blatant Expy of The Terminator, right down to his large hulking physique, leather outfit, and Cool Shades. Although Goku is unaware that the being he's facing is a robot until the very end, we get copious amounts of a mechanical HUD. He even provides the page image.


Buyon (ブヨン)
Voiced by: Daisuke Matsubara (Japanese), Christopher Sabat (Funimation dub), Mario Sauret (Latin American)

General White's "pet," it appears as Goku's last opponent. It's a large, obese pink alien... thing and is stored inside a hidden room in General White's tower.

  • Alien Among Us: Dragon Ball Online reveals that Buyon belongs to a race of space aliens called Jigglers. How exactly he got to Earth and was found and tamed by the Red Ribbon Army (and how exactly they managed to get him inside Muscle Tower) is unknown.
  • Big Eater: It eats cattle and even humans whole.
  • Boss Arena Idiocy: Buyon's one weakness is freezing temperatures, and its room is able to be accessed from the outside by destroying the wall.
    • In the video game, Dragon Ball: Revenge of King Piccolo, ice-using robots are often dropped down from the ceiling for Goku to freeze him with.
  • The Dreaded: Looking back, it's likely that Suno's father was referring to him and not Android 8 when he stated that Muscle Tower held a terrible monster.
  • Evil Laugh: He can't talk, but he laughs a lot.
  • Fat Bastard: Sure, he's just a hungry beast trying to survive, but his Evil Laugh and constant grinning suggests he's getting a kick out of Goku's feeble attempts to fight back.
  • Harmless Freezing: It's more apparent in the video game adaptations, where freezing it only allows the player to damage it, but in the anime Buyon still reacts to Goku kicking it hard enough it shatters.
  • Jabba Table Manners: Averted, despite the area it's kept in being littered with the bones of those it ate the bones it eats from are always picked clean, and it's not covered in food.
  • Kevlard: It's so fat it can completely No-Sell any direct attacks, including taking a full-blast Kamehameha to the stomach and having it just bounce off.
  • King Mook: If one takes the Dragon Ball Online as canon.
  • Killed Off for Real: Assuming that it wasn't revived when Goku had to wish for Earth to be fixed after Kid Buu destroys it. It's also the first named character to be Killed Off for Real by Goku, and the only member of the Red Ribbon Army not shown to be revived in GT.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: After punching a hole in the wall to freeze Buyon solid, Goku literally shatters him to pieces with one kick.
  • Meaningful Name: Its nickname "The Jiggler" should be obvious, given how fat it is, but "Buyon" includes the Japanese onomatopoeia for something that is soft or bouncy (buyo).
  • Mysterious Past: With the reveal that Buyon is actually a space alien, it becomes a mystery how exactly he got to Earth and how he was discovered and trained by the Red Ribbon Army.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: An interesting variation. Rather than being so physically tough it can withstand anything thrown at it, it's so soft it can withstand anything thrown at it.
  • No-Sell: Practically its main gimmick, being so fat that direct attacks don't deal any damage. Goku has to make it solid just to be able to defeat it.
  • Overly Long Tongue: And it can get long enough to reach across the room.
  • Stone Wall: Practically his main gimmick. He's so fat that even the Kamehameha bounces off of him, and it takes literally freezing it solid before Goku can even hurt it.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: The first enemy in the series to completely No-Sell a Kamehameha.

     General Blue 

General Blue (ブルー将軍, Buruu Shougun)
Voiced by: Toshio Furukawa (Japanese), Sonny Strait (Funimation dub), Roger Rhodes (Blue Water dub), Salvador Delgado (Latin American)

A high-ranking member of the Red Ribbon Army with formidable psychic powers. General Blue was searching for a Dragon Ball in the ocean when Goku and Bulma stumble into his camp. He quickly becomes a deadly enemy to Goku and friends, and is the first villain who can really take on Goku in a straight fight. When he fails to obtain the Dragon Ball, Commander Red orders him to fight Mercenary Tao, who kills him.

  • Adaptational Heroism: In Mystical Adventure, General Blue (named Lieutenant Blue) was shown to be somewhat of a nice guy, or at least not an evil guy. He also acted as a genuine Sacrificial Lion to Tao Pai Pai, being killed by him after he tried to warn his boss, Chiaotzu, about their treacherous plans against Chiaotzu after he stumbled upon Ranfan inside Shen's bedroom.
  • Adaptational Jerkass: In the original manga, Blue is more or less implied to be a Depraved Homosexual. The anime, however, takes it a step further by all but stating that Blue is a pedophile as well, making him that much more despicable. It also overlaps with Adaptational Nice Guy since most dubs remove this implication by suggesting he has a long lost little brother instead.
  • Adaptational Wimp: His Path to Power counterpart is not nearly as impressive as the regular version. He lacks psychic powers or any other superhuman ability and seems to be just a surprisingly tough regular soldier. He is even restrained by two other soldiers and killed by a regular firing squad, rather than in a fight with one of the world's greatest assassins.
  • Agent Peacock: He may be a Sissy Villain, but he is by far the strongest commander in the Red Ribbon Army. He easily beats Krillin and nearly killed Goku three times. He also escaped a collapsing underwater cave by swimming and survived his plane crashing into a mountain with no real injury. Even being knocked to Egypt barely caused him any damage.
  • All Gays Are Pedophiles: Anime only. Aside from being homosexual, he is sexually attracted to the childlike Obotchaman, which was changed in the dub to him being amazed for how Obotchaman supposedly looks like a long lost little brother of Blue named Samuel. The Latin Spanish dub barely avoids it by turning his object of desire into a girl. This scene never happened in the manga, though.
  • All Germans Are Nazis: Well, sort of. It is implied that he hails from Germany or at least a German-speaking country (He says "Auf Wiedersehen" when leaving Goku, Roshi, and Bulma to be blown to bits after stealing the Dragon Balls, which is the German equivalent of "Goodbye"), and everything about him basically speaks "Nazi."
  • Almighty Janitor: With his superhuman abilities and not too bad smarts, Blue is in all ways the strongest member of the Red Ribbon. He could easily overthrow Commander Red and Adjutant Black's chain of command if he so desired and would find relatively little resistance. However, he instead follows their commands to the letter and is never shown to have any ambition other than military loyalty, to the point he is positively terrified when Red announces him he will be executed.
  • Asshole Victim: Given his pedophilic tendencies (in the anime), habit of killing his own men for the most minor reasons, and status as a high-ranking officer in an army out for world domination, it's easy to say that his death at Tao's hands was well-deserved.
  • Ax-Crazy: He has one of his own men shot for picking his nose, and relishes in the sound of the gunfire.
  • A Twinkle in the Sky: What happened to him when he fought Arale, a robotic girl and the main character from Dr. Slump.
  • Bad Boss: Considering the fact that he executed soldiers for picking noses, failure to hit Goku twice, and cowardice/sleeping on the job (the last of which he executed in person the soldier who did these actions). At one point, he also implies that he physically abuses soldiers who somehow sneak up on him ("How many times do I have to tell you!? It's very hard to sneak up on a general and to keep your teeth!") The only one who's even worse of a boss in his army is his own boss, Commander Red, who once was implied to have executed a soldier just because he couldn't evade his cat in time, and also has a chilling disregard for his own troops, even willing to kill off his own army just to get himself taller.
  • Berserk Button: Sloppiness, sneaking up on him and especially getting his looks messed up.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: Named for his blue eyes, which complete his Nazi-esque appearance and also glow when he uses his psychic techniques.
  • Creepy Crossdresser: Sort of — when he finds that he would have have to wade through water to trail Bulma and Krillin for the Dragon Ball and potentially the pirate treasure, he complains that he forgot to pack his bikini trunks in his field kit.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Considering how she crashed into the police car he stole without a scratch, showed no fear when he held her hostage, and sent him flying when he tried to kill Goku, he certainly didn't expect that Arale, like Goku, is no ordinary child.
  • Disney Death: An entire underwater cave collapsed on him. He somehow survived. Was also knocked high enough to forcibly travel and crash-land from Penguin Village to an Egypt-like country and survive relatively intact.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: An immaculately handsome, blonde-haired, blue-eyed villain working for a paramilitary organisation who dresses in what looks like an SA "Browncoat" officer uniform and possesses superior physical and mental aptitude? Let's just say that the Dictator from Fusion Reborn would have been pleased to recruit him. Even his homosexuality seem to be inspired by the Sturmabteilung's reputation for high rates of openly gay recruits, including their executive Ernst Rohm.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: In the Funimation dub, his atraction to Obotchaman is replaced by Blue mistaking OB for his lost little brother Samual. It sounds like Funimation!Blue really missed him.
  • Fan Disservice: His reference to possessing bikini trunks, anyone?
  • The Fighting Narcissist: He completely loses it when Krillin gives him a nose bleed and ask the characters several times how they can hit a thing of beauty.
  • Genius Bruiser: Aside from being the strongest Red Ribbon Army soldier (which is demonstrated), General Blue was also stated by Commander Red to be a tactical genius on the battlefield. However, as he ends up doing most of his work personally, this is not showcased much outside of drawing a fake arrow in place of Kuririn and Bulma's arrow to trick Goku into going the wrong way.
  • Giggling Villain: He laughs like a noble woman in the Japanese version.
  • Incompatible Orientation: He's gay, but Bulma fawned over him like most Bishounen.
  • Inexplicably Awesome: His superhuman physical traits and psychic abilities are never given a proper explanation in the context of the series, not even after more dangerous foes are introduced. It is only hinted in an episode that he might have been "enhanced" in some way.
  • Iron Butt Monkey: This guy takes a lot of physical punishment. He is nearly electrocuted to death by a giant eel, gets knocked around by Goku, buried alive in an undersea cave, crashes his air jet into a mountain, and is knocked to Egypt by Arale. Despite all that, he shows no lasting damage.
  • I Was Beaten by a Girl: It was a robotic girl and the main character of Dr. Slump, but a girl nonetheless.
  • Karmic Death: He had a bad habit of killing his men for any minor transgression (falling asleep, picking noses, trying to sneak up on him when really one of them was trying to tell him they have orders from HQ, etc). Yet he himself is killed just due to his commander not seeing that he actually brought him something very useful that could speed up the search for the Dragon Balls (Goku's Dragon Radar) and more concerned he couldn't get the Dragon Ball as initially ordered, despite said commander knowing the trouble Goku was giving his army. Essentially Blue was executed due to a bout of pettiness from his superior just as he did his men.
  • Loves the Sound of Screaming: He smiles as he listened to a soldier being executed, outright stating that he loves the sounds of gunfire killing people.
  • Macho Camp: Scared of mice, and a bit of a neat freak (however, see Ax-Crazy). Otherwise, he is every bit a man's man, and one of the first truly threatening enemies Goku faces.
  • Near-Villain Victory: Despite getting two of his units wiped out, he came the closest to killing Goku not once, not twice, but three times. He also was successful in stealing the Dragon Balls and did succeed in taking Goku's Dragon Radar. He's by far the most successful villain of the Red Ribbon Army.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Very likely inspired by SA leader Ernst Röhm.
  • Oh, Crap!: His reaction in the anime when his use of his paralysis power on Mercenary Tao turns out to be a no-sell. Bear in mind that up until this point, even Goku was shown to be vulnerable to it. This completely destroys his self-confidence, resulting in him charging Tao in blind panic, followed by Tao finishing him off with his tongue.
  • Psychic Powers: Including paralyzing anyone who meets his gaze and animating ropes.
  • Psychopathic Manchild: The sadistic joy he takes in hurting people can best be compared to a schoolyard bully tormenting smaller children. Also, while he has other reasons for not liking it, Blue's reaction to Bulma flirting with him is almost similar to a young boy feeling as though interacting with girls would get him infected with cooties.
  • Putting on the Reich: He uniform is based on the Nazi SA.
  • Sissy Villain: On the one hand, he is super-strong and possesses frightening Psychic Powers. On the other, he is terrified of mice and obsessed with his looks.
  • Sorry, I'm Gay: Bulma's attempt at seducing him fails miserably.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: As Goku's first genuinely superpowered opponent both willing and capable of killing him, he is at the very bottom of said algorithm, though a dangerous Wake-Up Call Boss nonetheless. Fittingly, he is used as the fall guy to hype up Goku's next main opponent.
  • Squishy Wizard: He's a fairly strong guy, being able to overpower Krillin, but it's clear that in a head-on fight Goku could beat him rather handily if it weren't for his psychic powers. Also shown in the anime only part when he tries the telekinesis on Tao who breaks free of it with no trouble.
  • Super Soldier: He nearly kills Goku, who Curb Stomps all the other commanders, can lift heavy boulders with little effort, swim great distances, and have psychic powers. He fears only one thing: mice.
  • Super Strength: Such as lifting boulders and crushing phone booths with his bare hands. Also goes in line with superhuman endurance due to his surviving an electric eel's shocks with no apparent ill effects afterwards, and snapped its neck.
  • Take That!: It's implied he's inspired by Ernst Röhm (remember that General Blue's soldiers wear Nazi-like uniforms).
  • Time Bomb: Tried to kill Goku and Co. with one after he stole the Dragon Balls.
  • Token Super: General Blue is the only member of the Red Ribbon army to possess any sort of powers, in his case Psychic Powers that enables paralysis and telekinesis, as well as superhuman levels of strength, durability and speed that allow him to defeat Krillin and give Goku a decent fight. Everyone else was either a faceless mook, a Badass Normal, a ninja, a scientist, a robot, or a mindless monster with a natural invulnerability factor.
  • Undignified Death: Fitting for a prissy boy like him, Tao Pai Pai cuts his life short with his tongue. He could have killed Blue in any number of ways; yet not only did Tao utterly shatter his skull and let him soak in what had just happened, but he also gave Blue a lethal wet willy. One could only imagine the terror and disgust that was going through Blue's mind at the time.
  • Vanity Is Feminine: Had a mental breakdown when Kuririn gave him a nosebleed and had an equally bad reaction when Goku punched him. As for the effeminacy, he's a Neat Freak who's terrified of mice.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: The first major villain to defeat and almost kill Goku and his friends in combat. In fact, he is the first villain in the series who is actually capable of killing Goku, though he is soon eclipsed by Mercenary Tao, who kills him with no effort.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: After he ditches his uniform to swim through a sea cave.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: He's deeply afraid of mice.
  • Wolverine Publicity: Let us put it this way: He is the only Red Ribbon Army member who is actually playable in any of the DBZ fighting games (Budokai, Budokai Tenkaichi, etc). Sure, it was only for one game (Budokai Tenkaichi 3), but the rest of the Red Ribbon Army didn't get playable in any of those games. It is probably because he is the only member with any actual powers.
  • The Worf Effect: He's the strongest Red Ribbon officer, able to fight Goku and nearly kill him on more than one occasion. The first sign of Mercenary Tao's prowess is when he effortlessly kills Blue using nothing but his tongue. That he was able to do that to someone who managed to give Goku trouble serves to show how terrifyingly strong Tao is.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Had no problem trying to kill Krillin and nearly kills Goku multiple times.
  • You Have Failed Me:
    • He callously executes any of his lackeys who fail him... or who pick their nose in his presence.
    • When he fails to get the Dragon Balls (despite snagging Goku's rader and proclaiming he can make up for it by using the device to speed up the search for the balls, which actually is a better find), Blue himself is essentially executed by Commander Red, who offers to spare his life if he can beat Mercenary Tao, knowing that Blue stands no chance.

     Captain Yellow 

Captain Yellow (イエロー大佐, Ieroo Taisa)
Voiced by: Daisuke Gōri (Japanese), Andrew Chandler (Funimation dub), Ben Jeffery (Blue Water dub), Armando Réndiz (Latin American)

A tiger-person who briefly faces off against Goku, commanding a plane trying to raid Bora and Upa's village. Goku knocks him out of his airplane, killing him.

  • Disney Villain Death: Goku punched him out of his plane mid-flight. If that was not enough to convince you that he is dead, he later reappears in GT as one of the Hell escapees.
  • Funny Animal: He is a tiger who acts like a human.
  • Colorful Theme Naming: He's named after his yellow beltbuckle, sleves, and the yellow parts of his jacket.
  • Visual Pun: He's an anthropomorphic tiger who is a plane pilot. He's a Flying Tiger, alright.

     Colonel Violet 

Colonel Violet (バイオレット大佐, Baioretto Taisa)
Voiced by: Kazuko Sugiyama (Japanese), Kasey Buckley (Funimation dub), Jennifer Bain (Blue Water dub), Belinda Martínez (Latin American)

A female member of the Red Ribbon Army who is sent on an interference mission against Goku's allies to stop them from getting the Dragon Balls. She's only in it for the money and doesn't even care about her own subordinates. When Goku storms the Red Ribbon headquarters, she sees the writing on the wall and deserts, taking a huge amount of the army's money with her. Violet is the only Red Ribbon officer known to have survived.

  • Ascended Extra: She only has about two panels in the manga before she's never seen again. The anime expands a bit more on her showing she only working with Red Ribbons for the money.
  • Bad Boss: Doesn't give a lick about the people who work under her as she leaves her squad to their deaths while retrieving a Dragon Ball.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: After her hair.
  • Death by Adaptation: In the movie Path to Power, Goku blows up her airplane.
  • Hired Guns: Heavily implied to be her relationship with the Red Ribbon Army.
  • Karma Houdini: Until Path to Power, Violet had not only survived the events of the Red Ribbon Saga, but escaped it while enduring practically no consequences.
  • Pet the Dog: Despite her bad boss status, she does love animals and went out of her way to save a monkey while escaping. Granted, she does this immediately after killing several of her own men to distance herself from a crocodile.
  • Oh, Crap!: Anime-only, the only time she ever shows this is when she nearly flies into the ship carrying Goku's friends (coming the other way toward the Red Ribbon base she was fleeing) and barely swerves to get out of the way.
  • Only in It for the Money: Got paid when she returned with the Dragon Ball and robs the vault when Goku was rampaging through the base.
  • The Smurfette Principle: The only female seen in the Red Ribbon Army.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: In the anime, once Goku begins his invasion of the Red Ribbon base. She heads straight for the vault, grabs as much cash as she can, and then bolts. She's one of the few Red Ribbon officials to escape Goku's wrath at the time and, considering she doesn't appear later in the show, probably went on with her life after the Red Ribbon's downfall. Red was not happy about this when he found out.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: She has purple hair, hence her codename.

     Dr. Gero 

The Crane School

     Master Shen 

Master Shen (鶴仙人, Tsuru Sen'nin, "Crane Elder")
Voiced by: Ichirō Nagai (Japanese), Chuck Huber (Funimation dub), Clark Robertson (Blue Water dub), Carlos Segundo (Latin American)

Master Roshi's rival and Mercenary Tao's older brother. Tien and Chiaotzu's original teacher, the Crane Hermit has his students enter the 22nd World Martial Tournament in order to show up Roshi, hearing how far Goku and Krillin went in the previous tournament. When he hears that Goku defeated Tao, he changes his plans and tries to get his students to kill Goku and company. However, his interference in the final match causes his students to make a Heel–Face Turn, and he is sent flying by Roshi's Kamehameha wave. He shows up at the next tournament with his brother but is forced to flee when his ex-prize student easily beats Tao.

  • Avenging the Villain: When he learns what happened to his brother, Tao, he swears revenge against Goku and the Turtle School.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Shows up at the 23rd tournament seeking revenge on the Dragon Ball gang, but is quickly chased off after Cyborg Tao is defeated by Tien.
  • Cool Shades: Is never seen without his sunglasses.
  • Corrupt the Cutie: It is implied that seeing the cruelty of King Piccolo and the defeat of his master is what sent him down the path of evil.
  • Dangerous Forbidden Technique: He's the one who teaches Tien the Spirit Cannon/Kikoho, much to Roshi's displeasure.
  • Dirty Old Man: Attempts to grope Bulma, much to her disgust. Creepily, he isn't affected by the well placed blow from his potential victims like Roshi is.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Word of God says that he and Mercenary Tao were killed in an unknown incident (only described as "an evil deed" they were commiting) and haven't been brought back to life.
  • Dub Name Change: The name "Master Shen" is invented for the English dub. In the original Japanese version, he is only ever known as Tsuru Sen'nin or "Crane Elder."
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Genuinely cares for his little brother and wants to avenge his death.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: He knows well enough about the terror of Demon King Piccolo to never even consider releasing him, even with his desire for revenge.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: When he sees Goku, Krillin, and Yamcha all wearing the Turtle School uniform despite having surpassed Master Roshi, he accuses the three of being his puppets. He completely fails to understand that they're doing so because even though they're stronger than Master Roshi now, they still respect him.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Muten Roshi. Both trained under the same master, are Living Legends, are Renowned Selective Mentors who expects only the best out of their students and will put them through Training from Hell, and both are perverts. Shen becomes corrupted by King Piccolo after he beat and humiliated his master, turning him into a cynical, cold man who abuses his students and trains them to be assassins instead of helping people.
  • Evil Mentor: To Tien and Chiaotzu along with his brother. He trained Tien and Chiaotzu to be cold-blooded killers.
  • Evil Old Folks: He is as old as Roshi, maybe older, but is morally corrupt and petty.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Turns to evil after his master was defeated by King Piccolo.
  • It's Personal: Enters the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament to show up the Turtle House. Then he learns that Goku killed his younger brother and then it becomes personal.
  • Jerkass: Tries to turn his students into assassins and then attempted to kill them when they disobey his orders.
  • Living Legend: He is very well known within the martial's community and is seen as Master Roshi's equal and rival. Although his Jerkass personality isn't as well known, and Tien says he's weaker than Roshi, though not to Shen's face.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Gets Chiaotzu to use his paralysis on Goku when the latter is fighting Tien, but this only triggers a Heel–Face Turn in both of his students.
  • Master-Apprentice Chain: He is a student of Mutaito, one of the only survivors of King Piccolo's massacre after Master Roshi:
    • Mutaito → Master Shen → Tien and Chiaotzu
    • Mutaito → Master Shen → Tao → Tien and Chiaotzu
  • Moral Myopia: He swears revenge against Goku for killing Mercenary Tao, who happens to be his younger brother. Goku counters that Tao attacked him since he was hired to kill him and he only defended himself. He doesn't care.
  • Nice Hat: It has a crane on it.
  • Older Than They Look: Implied to be the same age or older than Roshi, meaning he too is at least 300 years old.
  • Pyrrhic Victory: Technically, one his students wins the tournament. They have left his dojo by that point thanks to his petty ways.
  • Renowned Selective Mentor: He's about as picky about his students as Master Roshi and is also a legend in the Martial Arts world. As far as we know his only students are his younger brother, Tao, Tien, and Chiaotzu.
  • Revenge Myopia: He swears vengeance on Goku for killing Mercenary Tao, his younger brother, not caring that, as Goku pointed out, Tao was a Psycho for Hire who was not only hired to kill him, but also killed one of his friends, and Goku was acting in self-defense.
  • Rival Turned Evil: He and Roshi used to train under the same master. He turned to darkness after his master was humiliated by King Piccolo and left to die on the ground.
  • Rival Dojos: With the Turtle School.
  • Sadist: Likes seeing other people in pain and passes this tendency to his students.
  • Shadow Archetype: He's a shadow of Master Roshi. He represents what Roshi would be like if he becomes corrupted.
  • Training from Hell: His training style for Tien and Chiaotzu. Unlike Roshi, he neglects to give them a rounded education, and Chiaotzu pays for it during his fight with Krillin when Krillin outwits him with a grade-school math problem.
  • The Unfought: None of the main characters fight him. The closest is when Roshi knocks him out with a single Kamehameha that sends him flying out of the arena.
  • Victory Gloating: Does this after Tien beats Yamcha at the tournament.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: After Tien knocks out Tao at the 23rd tournament and literally hands his brother's unconscious body to him, he flies off and is never seen again (not even in the anime, unlike Tao).
  • We Used to Be Friends: Roshi and he used to be good friends who trained under the same master before he turned to evil.

     Mercenary Tao 

Mercenary Tao / Tao Pai Pai (桃白白, Taopaipai)
Click here to see Cyborg Tao 
Voiced by: Chikao Ohtsuka (Japanese), Yukimasa Kishino (Japanese DBZ), Michael McConnohie (Harmony Gold dub), Scott McNeil (Ocean dub), Kent Williams (Funimation dub), Doug McKeag (Blue Water dub), Gerardo Reyero (DB eps. 58-60), Pedro D'Aguillón Jr. (rest of DB), César Soto (Z) (Latin American)

The brother of the Crane Hermit, a mercenary and assassin hired by the Red Ribbon Army to collect the Dragon Balls for them. Swift and merciless, he is the first human character to hand Goku a defeat outside the World Martial Arts Tournament. After some training though, Goku manages to return the favor and Tao accidentally blows himself up when a grenade is kicked back at him. He returns later as a cyborg but is quickly defeated again despite the upgrades. Makes a few more appearances in filler of the Z series.

  • Arm Cannon: His Super Dodon Ray.
  • Backstab Backfire: Get blown up by his own grenade when he attempts to throw it at Goku when his back is turned.
  • Badass Boast: Tells to Blue he'll kill him using only his tongue. He delivers.
  • Badass Mustache: Used to be the page image.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Shares this role with the Crane Hermit during the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament. He would have been a powerful and dangerous opponent... three years earlier. However, since Goku and the others battled King Piccolo and were forced to become stronger from it, he is hardly a Warm-Up Boss for Tien.
    • In Dragon Ball Online is the leader of new Red Ribbon Army, unfortunately for him, is the leader of the weakest faction of the game. (They are levels 22-30 in a game that the maximum level is 70.)
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: After becoming a cyborg, he possesses a retractable blade hidden in his left hand.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: For a Professional Killer, he's pretty damn careless. In their first fight, he shoots Goku with a Dodon Ray, but doesn't bother to check Goku's body and make sure he's actually dead. Unsurprisingly, Goku is still very much alive, and while Tao is attending to other matters, trains with Korin to become strong enough to defeat Tao.
  • Broken Pedestal: Even after his Heel–Face Turn, Tien still admired and respected Tao, who was his former master. During the Piccolo Jr. Saga, Tao resorts to a Blade Below the Shoulder to attack Tien, breaking the tournament rules in the process; Tien is absolutely disgusted by this, declaring that Tao has cast away his honor and pride as a warrior by resorting to such tactics.
    Tien: What respect I have for you has now turned to pity! You have no honor!
  • Card-Carrying Villain: He's a Psycho for Hire who delights in his sadism and cruelty, to the extent that after forcing a tailor to do a week's worth of work on his destroyed uniform in three days, he refused to pay him on the grounds that doing so would ruin his reputation as a cold, ruthless assassin. Tao then reconsiders, and decides to offer the man "payment" in the form of doing what he does best: killing someone. When the man declines, not wanting anyone dead, Tao shows his offer wasn't optional by killing him with a single finger to the head.
  • Child Hater: He mentions it in volume 8 of the Dragon Ball manga that he hates children.
  • Climax Boss: He is the toughest enemy Goku fights in the entire Red Ribbon Saga, including Gohan, Sr. Master Roshi didn't even believe Goku when he says he killed Tao.
  • Clothing Damage: Compliments of Goku's Kamehameha. His clothes get damaged again during his rematch with Goku.
  • Colourful Theme Naming: After a color. "Taopaipai" roughly translates to "Peach-White-White."
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • His "fight" with General Blue. He easily dodges all of Blue's attacks, No Sells his paralysis technique,note  and kills him using only his tongue.
    • How he beats Goku in their first fight. Goku returns the favor in their second match.
    • After his return as a cyborg, he takes Chiaotzu out without breaking a sweat. He's then defeated with a tap and a punch by Tien during the tournament.
  • Cyborg: He is rebuilt into one after Goku kicks his own grenade in his face. He also becomes even more powerful, but it doesn't really help him since the cast greatly surpassed him by the time of his return.
  • Dirty Coward: Considering the fact that he promises that he will change just to keep Goku from killing him, and as soon as Goku let his guard down, he attempts to kill him with a grenade, it's pretty reasonable that he qualifies as such. He also uses dirty tricks against Tien in the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament, like pulling out a knife hidden in his robotic arm.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Word of God stated in an interview that he killed Mr. Satan's master and beat Mr. Satan to the brink of death for making fun of his hairstyle.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Word of God says that he and the Crane Hermit were killed in an unknown incident (only described as "an evil deed" they were commiting) and haven't been brought back to life.
  • The Dreaded: He is feared by everyone since he is the world's greatest assassin, capable of killing someone who is Immune to Bullets. Goku defeating him was so outstanding that Master Roshi initially didn't believe Goku (though Goku was wrong about killing Tao). One of the guides states that Mister Satan became the coward he is because Tao came to his master's dojo, and brutally beat up everybody including himself and his master. From then on, Satan swore only to challenge people he knows he can beat, and is still deathly afraid of Tao.
  • Dub Name Change: The short-lived Harmony Gold dub made him "Tao Pei." The Funimation dub called him General Tao (due to mistakenly believing him to have been a member of the Red Ribbon Army) and then the more proper Mercenary Tao.
  • Evil Is Petty: For starters, after forcing a tailor to do a week's worth of work on his ruined uniform in three days, he refuses to pay him on the grounds that doing so would ruin his reputation as a cold, ruthless assassin, and kills him instead (he offers to "pay" him by carrying out a contract killing on anybody of his choice, only for the tailor to quite understandably balk at that). Not only that, but Word of God is that in the past, Tao killed Mr. Satan's master and beat Satan himself within an inch of his life simply because the two made fun of his hairstyle.
  • Evil Mentor: To Tien and Chiaotzu, next to the Crane Hermit.
  • Expy: His appearance is based from the villain of the '78 Jackie Chan movie Snake in the Eagle's Shadow.
  • Failed a Spot Check: How he missed the 4-star ball and the fact that Goku was still alive after getting nailed in the chest with a Dodon Ray.
  • Finger Gun: His Dodon Ray technique, via the Crane School of martial arts.
  • Fingerpoke Of Doom: His introduction has him killing General Blue with his tongue. He later uses this to kill a tailor after he asked for his payment.
  • Gratuitous English: What kind of assassin goes around with "KILL YOU!" written on his clothes?note 
  • Gratuitous Hawaiian: "Aloha!"
  • Greed: Implied by the fact that he charges a very hefty price for his services; normally, he charges ten billion Zeni per kill, but when Commander Red approaches him, he gives him a 20th anniversary discount of five billion.
  • Hate Sink: He seems to have been made with the intention of being loathed by the viewers, starting with the very fact that he's the first human who killed someone good in the cast. After he murders Upa's father in front on him and defeats Goku in battle, he laughs at Upa and tells him that he's lucky that he's still alive, meaning that he has absolutely no problem killing children. One of his worst offenses has to got to be when he forces a tailor to overwork on making an outfit for him in about three days...which he rewards by killing him. When he returns to Karin's Tower to look for the one Dragon Ball he neglected to find, he grabs Upa and throws him against the tower (fortunately, he was saved by Goku).
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Throwing a grenade at Goku was a bad idea.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Tao is the first example in the franchise, being a Professional Killer and Psycho for Hire who delights in his sadism and cruelty. Among other things, he kills Upa's father Bora in cold blood, forces a tailor to do a week's worth of work on his ruined uniform in three days, kills said tailor rather than pay him for his hard work, and openly admits he'll kill anyone, man, woman, or child, as long as he gets paid.
  • Informed Ability: He states that he has become much stronger after being converted into a cyborg. This isn't really shown since Tien easily defeats him and he only beats Chiaotzu since he was shocked to see Tao alive after being confirmed dead six years ago.
  • I Surrender, Suckers: He tries to surrender to Goku and when his guard is lowered, throws a grenade at him. Goku simply kicked it back at him.
  • Jerkass: Besides being a Professional Killer who has no problem killing a child, he also killed the tailor because he had the nerve to ask to be paid for doing a week's worth of work in three days. What with his fee being ten billion Zeni per assassination (except when it's his 20th anniversary as an assassin, in which case he "only" charges five billion), it isn't like he lacked the money. He also murders Bora, a friend of Goku, for no particular reason.
  • Kick the Dog: See above. Killed Bora and the tailor, also attempted to kill Upa. None of this was for any real reason, other than to emphasize how merciless he is.
  • Knight of Cerebus: Before him, nobody good had died onscreen and nobody bad had ever defeated Goku, and his cruelty is played seriously. However, as soon as Goku got stronger, he's relegated to a joke and it would not be until King Piccolo that a villain would be playing for keeps.
  • Know When to Fold Them:
    • He doesn't even try fighting Goku in Z when he comes for Tao's employer for one of the dragon balls, he only stalls him with puzzles, followed by running away and gives him the dragon ball once Goku beats the puzzles fair and square.
    • He immediately quits his fight against Gohan once he realizes who he's the son of, knowing that it was far too much effort and a fight he could not win.
  • Lack of Empathy: Coldly murders Bora for no good reason and tells Upa that he's lucky that he did not decide to kill him. Roshi even stated that Tao has nothing resembling a conscience, and he's 100% correct on that matter.
  • Lightning Bruiser: The first villain in the series to be truly faster and (initially) stronger than Goku.
  • Master-Apprentice Chain: It is heavily implied that Tao was trained by his brother the Crane Hermit and helped trained Tien and Chiaotzu: Mutaito > Master Shen > Tao < Tien and Chiaotzu
  • Minor Injury Overreaction: Taken Up to Eleven. He's so furious that Goku's Kamehameha ruined his outfit, even though it didn't actually harm him, that he dispenses with his Just Toying with Them style of killing and blasts him with a Dodon Ray.
  • Never Bring a Knife to a Fist Fight: Subverted, as he does get himself disqualified but the illegal weapons are the only way he managed to hurt Tien, however insignificantly.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: His murder of Upa's father Bora is what leads Goku to actively seek out the Dragon Balls and destroy the Red Ribbon Army.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: He takes out his targets fast, often with one-hit kills. When Goku proved to be resilient to blunt blows, he tries to pierce his heart with a Dodon Ray. His only mistake was not bothering to check Goku's body.
  • Not Quite Flight: When he wants to go somewhere, he just throws a pillar and rides it to his intended destination. To make it clear, he throws the pillar, and then leaps onto it while it is in flight.
  • Not So Stoic:
    • Has a complete breakdown when Goku proved to be stronger than him.
    • It happened again when Tien proved to be his superior at the 23rd tournament.
  • Oh, Crap!: He gets one when Goku kicks his grenade back at him.
  • Only Mostly Dead: A fairly ridiculous example as Goku clearly saw him being blown up into nothingness.
  • Pressure Point: How he kills General Blue; by jabbing a pressure point in his temple with his tongue.
  • Professional Killer: The best in the world.
  • Psycho for Hire: He charges 10 billion Zeni per kill, but nonetheless loves killing people. Hell, the very first thing he says to Goku is "Pleased to kill you."
  • Razor-Sharp Hand: And feet. And fingers. And tongue.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: And will kill you if you dare say otherwise.
  • Really 700 Years Old: He's as old as his brother Shen, who is about the same age as Master Roshi.
  • Sadist: BIG TIME, although not as sadistic compared to other villains in the series. Most of his actions are motivated by money.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: His reaction to finding out Gohan was Goku's son (Filler only).
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: An In-Universe example; Tao likes to attack using only one appendage, especially one that isn't normally very robust. His Establishing Character Moment comes when he kills General Blue using only his tongue, and in his first fight against Goku he uses mainly his ponytail.
  • The Sociopath: He fits the bill in several ways. Tao is utterly cruel and merciless, has no qualms against killing women and children for money, takes open pride in being a Psycho for Hire, and as stated by Master Roshi, has nothing resembling empathy or a conscience.
  • Stoic: Remains cool and professional as he is killing his target.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: In Dragon Ball Online, he manages to survive until the year 1,000.
  • Third-Person Person: He often refers to himself as "this Taopaipai" in Japanese, an indication of his inflated ego.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Despite there being no visible remains after he got blown up, somehow he was brought back as a cyborg.
  • Vanity: Went to the tailor to get new clothes after Goku destroyed his outfit. As he puts it, "having torn clothes wasn't benefitting". It ends up costing him since he didn't return to Korin until three days later, giving Goku time to climb the tower and become strong enough to defeat him.
  • Villain Cred: In the dub. As mentioned above, under Card-Carrying Villain and Evil Is Petty, he has a reputation as a cold, ruthless assassin, and outright refuses to pay the tailor who repaired his outfit on the grounds that doing so would ruin said reputation.
  • Villain Decay: He really gets hit by this. When he was introduced, he was ruthless and renowned assassin who easily beat Goku. Even in their rematch, he still gave Goku a tough fight. By the time he returns during the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament, Tien beats him with just a tap on the shoulder and a punch to the gut. He gets even further reduced if you count the Z fillers where he runs at the mere mention of Goku's name.
  • Villain Forgot to Level Grind: His transformation to cyborg did increase his strength, but by the time he reappears his old student Tien is so powerful he goes down in one shot. By the time he makes his brief appearance in Z, he knows he's completely outclassed and flees at the mere mention of Goku.
  • Villains Want Mercy: Begs for his life when Goku overpowers him, and then tries to blow him up with a grenade. Somewhat subverted in that the begging was all a performance to get Goku to lower his guard and leave himself open to the grenade attack, rather than a genuine plea that he went back on after it was granted.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Once Goku proves to be his superior, he loses it and is reduce to pulling I Surrender, Suckers to try to kill Goku. He has another one when fighting Tien at the 23rd World Martial Arts Tournament and he proves to be much stronger than him. By the end, he pulls a knife on Tien, leaving an everlasting scar on his chest.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: Before Tao, Goku was easily beating the Red Ribbon Army. Even their best, General Blue, only got ahead thanks to his paralyzing technique. Tao came and not only beat Goku, but utterly destroyed him with no effort.
  • We Can Rebuild Him: Is turned into a cyborg after he's nearly killed by Goku.
  • Weak, but Skilled: He's the World's Greatest Assassin, knowing many crafty techniques, but by his return in the 23rd World Tournament he's so physically weak compared to the current characters that he got one-shotted by Tien, and that's before his reappearance in filler episodes of Z, where planet busting has become the standard.
  • Whole Costume Reference: Nigh-identical in appearance and personality to Sheng Kuan, the main villain of Snake in the Eagle's Shadow.
  • The Worf Barrage: The Super Dodon Wave, despite being a stronger Wave-Motion Gun version of the Dodon Ray, never once successfully deals damage to anyone. Granted, it was used only once in the manga, but even then was blocked by a simple kiai.
  • The Worf Effect:
    • After easily taking out Goku in their first fight, he's utterly outmatched in their second.
    • He returns as a cyborg more powerful than ever...and gets one-shotted by Tien.
  • Would Hurt a Child: He stated that he would kill anyone, man, woman, or child for the right price. He also did not hesitate to attempt to kill Goku, even though he is 12. He also tells Upa that he's lucky to still be alive.

     Tenshinhan / Tien Shinhan 

     Chaozu / Chiaotzu 

The Demon Clan

     Demon King Piccolo 

Demon King Piccolo (ピッコロ大魔王, Pikkoro Daimaō)
Click here to see Old King Piccolo 
Voiced by: Takeshi Aono (Japanese), Scott McNeil (Ocean dub), Christopher Sabat (Funimation dub), Mike Shepherd (Blue Water dub), Carlos Segundo (Latin American)

Not to be confused with the Piccolo of Dragon Ball Z, his son. Piccolo Daimaō, literally "Piccolo the Great Demon King", was a demon of Namekian origin who was Made of Evil, created when the evil side of Kami was expelled and gained sentience. He once precipitated the Earth into utter mayhem and pandemonium with his army of animal-like demon sons, before being sealed away by Mutaito, Master Roshi and Master Shen's master, at the cost of his own life. Centuries later, he was freed by Pilaf, and proved to be the toughest opponent yet for the young Goku. Of course, like all the villains he goes down eventually, in this case by a fist straight through his midsection.

Piccolo's arrival marked a major turning point in the series. The story and the villains became Darker and Edgier, which is when the anime split into Z.

  • Adaptational Badass: In Supersonic Warriors he puts up a decent fight against Piccolo Jr. after he had fused with Kami, despite being exponentially weaker than his son at that point.
  • The Ageless: Eventually obtains eternal youth from Shenron, though doesn't live long enough for the 'eternal' part to come in. Strangely, the Funimation dub changes his wish to having his youth restored. The Daizenshuu reveals that he passed this on to Piccolo Jr.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • He was trapped in a rice cooker for hundreds of years at the bottom of the ocean. There's a reason why he's terrified of the Evil Containment Wave.
    • Karin says that people killed by King Piccolo and his children won't go to the afterlife and endure endless suffering in limbo.
  • Anarcho-Tyranny: Demon King Piccolo escapes from his prison and proceeds to Take Over the World after regaining his youth and sending his minions out to murder every fighter who might be able to oppose him. He decides to abolish all laws and encourages people to fight and kill each other while he remains in charge, enjoying the chaos he has unleashed.
  • Arch-Enemy:
    • Became this to Goku after he murders Krillin and Master Roshi leading the young boy on his first true Roaring Rampage of Revenge a feat that wouldn't be seen again until the Saiyan's battle with Frieza. Piccolo feels the same and gives his grudge to his final son, Piccolo Jr.
    • King Piccolo served this role to Master Roshi since his master Mutaito had to sacrifice himself to seal Piccolo away with the Mufuba and he murdered his fellow disciples with the exception of Shen. Once he realises that Piccolo has returned Roshi immediately tries to reseal Piccolo at the cost of his life. And while Piccolo wasn't aware of who Roshi was he did send his sons out to murder every martial artists he could find on the off chance that someone with the knowledge of the Mufuba could exist.
    • Finally King Piccolo serves this role to Kami due to the former being the personification of the evil that Kami had to expel in order to become God. Kami has had to watch the evils that Piccolo committed without being able to interfere and, when his son Piccolo Jr. attempts to follow in his father's footsteps, he directly decides to intervene and seal Junior away himself. When it seems like Junior can't be stopped he even asks Tien to kill him before his evil can hurt anyone else.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: He generally doesn't use his fullpower as it shortens his lifespan, but he's near unbeatable when he does.
  • Ax-Crazy: Relishes pain and destruction, and is prone to maniacal laughter and Slasher Smiles.
  • Benevolent Boss: He treats his minions well since they are his children. He becomes upset when he feels Cymbal and Tambourine die and goes out of his way to avenge them. This stands out since he is the only Benevolent Boss in the series until Sorbet is introduced.
  • Big Bad: He and his son are the first true big bads and are also the final villains of the last story arcs of the original Dragon Ball.
  • Bizarre Alien Reproduction: He gives birth to his children by vomiting out eggs after reciting a nursery rhyme, which freaks out the Pilaf Gang. In the dub, he gives a chant about his children serving him.
  • Breath Weapon: Notably used it to kill Shenron.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Openly admits that he hates peace and justice more than anything.
  • The Chessmaster: Piccolo's plan of world domination was so well thought out and intricately planned it even took the heroes by surprise. The first thing he did was have his henchmen kill all the Earth's strongest martial artists so that no one could oppose him. Then swallowed the Dragon Balls he had gained so that if anyone tried to kill him they would in process destroy the Dragon Balls. After he had wished for his youth to be restored, he then kills Shenron just to ensure that no one could use the Dragon Balls and use any wishes against him
  • Combat Pragmatist: He immediately killed Chiaotzu when he tried to sabotage Demon King Piccolo's quest for immortality by making his wish to Shenron before Piccolo did. He also checked Goku's pulse before confirming he was dead in their first battle.
  • The Corrupter: It is stated by Master Roshi that Shen became corrupted after witnessing King Piccolo's cruelty and humiliating his master. Also, part of the reason why Piccolo frees all the prisoners and abolished all laws is to stroke the darkest aspects of humanity.
  • Curb-Stomp Cushion: While he kicks Goku's ass easily during their first fight, Goku did manage to land several hits and even knock him to the ground.
  • Darkest Hour: Took over the world, killed several beloved characters, killed Shenron so no one can be wished back, was going to blow up a section of the world every year; things were not looking good.
  • Death of Personality: Maybe. It seems to depend on what mood Toriyama is in. Either Piccolo Jr. is just his son and King Piccolo is still around in the afterlife or Piccolo Jr. really is he reincarnated Demon King and King Piccolo has effectively ceased to be.
  • Defeat Equals Explosion: For some reason, having a hole punched through his chest resulted in him exploding. Even stranger is most characters killed by physical attacks at this point in the series normally simply die.
  • Despair Event Horizon: What he plunged the world into, twice, after he took over.
  • Didn't See That Coming:
    • His reactions when his kids get killed by Goku and Yajirobe. Even his right-hand man has a tough time believing it.
    • Both Piano and he are shocked when Goku reappears, still alive and stronger than ever, right after Piccolo all but killed him.
    • Piccolo never saw coming that he would lose to Goku because he failed to disable his right arm.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: He actually killed Shenron with a mouth blast. Just to prevent anyone from using the Dragon Balls again.
  • Dirty Coward: Near the end of his fight with Goku, he takes Tien hostage and threatened to kill him if Goku did anything. He then proceeds to break one of Goku's arms and legs, immobilizing him. Too bad he left him an arm.
  • Do Not Adjust Your Set: The first thing he does as Global Dictator is to declare on International Television "I DON'T intend to lord over you: in fact, you are free to do as you please from now on: Kill, pillage, steal and rob to your heart's content: I hereby declare the end of peace and justice!". Cell must have taken notes from his genetic memory to have done the same 14 years later.
  • The Dreaded:
    • He is called the Demon King Piccolo. Master Roshi was terrified of him and he was considered the devil of the Dragon Ball world. Yajirobe really liked eating his minions, but upon learning who they were minions of he started shaking in fear and gave Goku the Dragon Ball that would have brought the demon to him. Three years after his death, when the World Martial Arts Tournament spectators discover Piccolo Jr.'s identity during his fight with Goku, they run out of the stadium en masse.
    • From Piccolo's point of view, an Electric Jar. He was sealed in one for hundreds of years at the bottom of the ocean and fears it more than anything else, as well as the Evil Containment Wave, the technique that put him there. His first order of business upon his return is to kill every martial artist in the world to ensure he could never be imprisoned again. During his fight with Goku, he freaks out when he thinks Goku is about to perform the Evil Containment Wave (he was really charging a Kamehameha). And during his fight with Master Roshi, just Roshi mentioning his master Mutaito's name was enough to make Piccolo break out into a cold sweat. When Roshi shows him an Electric Jar, he runs for the hills screaming.
  • Dystopia Justifies the Means: Once he takes over the world, he says that he has no desire to rule over his subjects. Instead he lets everyone do whatever they want, including robbery and murder. Later he decides to hold a lottery to destroy one region of the world per year. His goal is to make everyone live in fear for the rest of their lives.
  • Earn Your Title: He called the Demon King and he turned the world into a living hell not once, but twice.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: King Piccolo's children look nothing like traditional Namekians, having various odd features like wings or looking like a dragon. Suggested explanations are that either the parent Namekian can choose the appearance of their offspring, or King Piccolo's evilness twisted his offspring into mutants.
  • Enemy Without: He is the evil within Kami's heart who took physical form after Kami expelled all the darkness inside himself.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: For all of his evil, Piccolo does seem to care for his underlings/sons and personally goes after Goku to avenge them.
  • Evil Counterpart:
    • To Kami. He's the evil that existed within Kami before he became the Guardian of the Earth.
    • He's also an evil counterpart to Goku. Both are aliens from worlds that were in distress (one being outright destroyed), they both were raised in isolation away from the civilized world, lost their memories of their old worlds, and had come to see the blue planet as their one true home. Their arrival on Earth also greatly impacted the planet changing it forever. The difference between them is that whereas living on Earth gave Goku the best qualities of humanity, it gave the Nameless Namekian that later split into Kami and Piccolo the worst qualities.
    • The Backstory about him being a demon "born" on Earth who once lead an army capable of destroying it before being sealed away are elements of Sun Wukong Dragon Ball Son Goku didn't inherent, making him even more of an evil counterpart. And, of course, Piccolo wasn't given a restraining bolt or Morality Chain when he was unsealed.
  • Evil Feels Good: He practically breathes this trope. See Card-Carrying Villain.
  • Evil Has a Bad Sense of Humor: After his youth is restored, he summons Pilaf, Shu and Mai and announces that their reward for helping him is...they get thrown off the ship. Pilaf is stunned for a few seconds, and assumes he's joking. King Piccolo tells him that he doesn't waste time with jokes, and has them thrown out. Although what King Piccolo finds amusing is a lot different from what most people do.
  • Evil Is Bigger: He's huge compared to virtually everyone else he interacts with, as seen here.
  • Evil Old Folks: He's very old when he emerges from the rice cooker. Regaining his youth is his first priority.
  • Evil Overlord: He calls himself the king of demons and wants to be emperor of the world.
  • Exact Words: He repeatedly expresses the belief that no human could ever defeat him and is in disbelief when Goku does so. To be fair, he was technically right: no human ever beat him. Goku is a Human Alien.
  • Expy:
    • His status as a demon seems to be a nod to the multiple demon enemies that Sun Wukong faced in Journey to the West.
    • King Piccolo is also notable, in a series known for its persistent (if minor) use of Recycled Script, for having by far the greatest number of expies of his own in future Dragon Ball villains. The list includes both characters who play on his Ancient Evil sealed in a can theme (both Garlic Jr. and his father, Bojack, Majin Buu, Hirudegarn, and Moro) and characters who play on his backstory (Garlic Sr. is an evil alien who attempted to become Earth's Kami, Lord Slug is an evil Namekian who wishes to have his youth restored, Dabura is a literal Demon King, Beerus is an (affably) evil counterpart to the local God expy who will die if said God is killed). Piccolo Jr. is basically a direct continuation of his father's storyline and continues to frequently refer to himself as the Demon King. Cell is essentially a Darker and Edgier (with a dash of Doing In the Wizard) retool of King Piccolo's entire storyline, including being a Hope Crusher Sadist, coming from a different time period (the past for Piccolo, the future for Cell), gathering a set of artifacts in order to acquire a stronger physical form, trolling the world by threatening with eventual (instead of immediate) destruction, spawning children to destroy the heroes instead of doing it himself, and being eventually defeated by a small child with only one arm (and exploding!). Majin Buu continues the trend by being released by a diminutive villain who plans to rule the world/universe but is no real threat to the heroes himself (and is eventually betrayed by Buu to boot), being opposed by the local God and his attendant, and eventually reincarnating into a new body who eventually becomes an ally to Goku after fighting him at the next World Martial Arts Tournament. Even Broly could be considered an expy, since both draw on the parts of Sun Wukong that Goku didn't exemplify: Sealed Evil in a Can for Piccolo, Power Limiter headband for Broly, unimaginable power (at the time) for both.
  • Family Theme Naming: King Piccolo and all of his children (Tambourine, Drum, Cymbal, Piano, Piccolo Jr.) are all named after musical instruments.
  • Faux Affably Evil: He speaks politely to Goku and even praises his skills in their first fight after Goku lands a few hits and manages to knock him down... before beating Goku within an inch of his life. He also calmly offers one of the king's guard a position as one of his men. When he refuses, Piccolo puts his hand through the guy's chest.
  • A Father to His Men: Figuratively and literally, and his only redeeming trait. Compared to every villain in the entire Dragon Ball series outside of Sorbet, he actually has some care for his underlings and will go out of his way to avenge them.
  • Final Boss: He is the final villain Goku confronts as a child, or the Boyhood chapters in the manga.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: The demon king of the Dragon World is named after a musical instrument. Launch outright mocks it, asking if that's his real name. Master Roshi is quick to point out that there is nothing charming about him despite his name. We learned much later that Piccolo chose the name because of its in-universe meaning.
  • For the Evulz: Why he does everything. He loves to make others suffer.
  • Genius Bruiser: Where do you think Piccolo got it from?
  • Greater-Scope Villain: For the original series before becoming the Arc Villain of the King Piccolo Saga. It was his actions that caused Kami to create the Dragon Balls. He wanted to give the people of Earth something to hope for after Piccolo's original rampage. Piccolo's cruelty is also the reason why the Crane Hermit became corrupt and abandoned his master's teachings. He also gave birth to his final son/reincarnation, Piccolo Jr, before dying.
  • Hero Killer: While he only directly kills Chiaotzu, he is also responsible for Master Roshi's death (who dies after failing to seal King Piccolo with the Evil Containment Wave) and orders the deaths of Krillin and many other World Martial Arts fighters. He also briefly kills Goku, though in Goku's case, he was Not Quite Dead. He also comes damn close to killing Goku in their second fight, and would have won if it was just them. Goku admits he would have been toast if Tenshinhan hadn't saved him from one of Piccolo's city-destroying blasts, and their fight would have been a mutual kill even with Ten's intervention if Yajirobe wasn't there to catch him at the last second.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice:
    • He kills one of the king's strongest men by literally putting his hand through his chest.
    • How he met his end at the literal hand of Goku, having punched right through him.
  • Knight of Cerebus: The wackiness of Dragon Ball with its childish enemies ended officially with him. There is nothing comical or light-hearted about him and his arc is the darkest in the original Dragon Ball in terms of both threat and deaths. Even in his old age, he beats Goku so thoroughly that Goku's heart stops, leaving him clinically dead for several minutes.
  • Large and in Charge: He is well over 8 feet tall.
  • Leitmotif: Notable in that Kikuchi not only designed several variations for one particular tune, but that it also carried over to Piccolo Jr. well into Z.
  • Looks Like Orlok: He's bald, has goblin-ears, a hooked nose, pronounced canines and long nails. The anime also depicts him in a vampire-like fashion.
  • Made of Evil: He's the physical incarnation of Kami's dark half.
  • Make Sure He's Dead: After beating Goku into the ground, he makes sure to check Goku's pulse before he leaves, discovering that Goku's heart has indeed stopped. Of course, he never anticipated that Goku's heart would restart itself shortly after he left.
  • Maou the Demon King: "Demon King" Piccolo. He was initially meant to be a demon lord that was the evil half of Earth's god and spawned a bunch of demonic minions, but later on he was retconned as an alien Namekian.
  • Meaningful Name: An in-universe example. Piccolo means 'another world' in Namekian. So King Piccolo's name translates to 'king from an another world'.
  • Mind over Matter: Levitates the hidden Dragon Balls, along with his two after he kills Roshi.
  • Mook Maker: Created his followers by birthing them through eggs.
  • Moral Myopia: He's outraged that Goku has killed two of his sons and personally confronts him over it. This is despite the fact that Piccolo had been both directly and indirectly responsible for the deaths of countless innocents, including Goku's best friend Krillin.
  • My Death Is Just the Beginning: States something to this effect prior to giving birth to Piccolo Jr.:
    King Piccolo: He's won for now... but my legacy on this planet will survive!
  • Near-Villain Victory: Piccolo succeeds in getting everything he wanted. He got the Dragon Balls to give him eternal youth and killed the dragon so no one could ever use the Dragon Balls against him. He also murdered a large number of the strongest fighters in the world, and seizes control of the entire world, turning it into a living hell. His reign was only short-lived because of Goku.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: If King Piccolo hadn't spat out that last egg containing Piccolo Jr., Kami would've died with him, Shenron wouldn't have been restored, and all the people killed by King Piccolo and his sons would've stayed dead. In a wider sense if Piccolo Jr was never born, Goku wouldn't have been as strong as he was to fight Raditz and he would be missing a powerful ally in all his future battles.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: An alien demon emperor kung-fu master, complete with his own gi, spaceship, and skull throne.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Toriyama's editor Kazuhiko Torishima admitted King Piccolo's character and lust for malevolence were inspired by the tyrannical Roman Emperor Nero.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Delivers this to Goku in their first encounter. The beating was so severe he even stopped Goku's heart briefly.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: His first order of business upon his return is kill all the world's martial artists so no-one can ever seal him again and collect the Dragon Balls to wish for youth. Upon finding out that two of his children are killed, he goes and deals with the threat directly and nearly kills Goku, even checks his heart to make sure he was dead. He allows the other heroes to collect the remaining Dragon Balls and swallowed his so they couldn't steal them. When he was about to make his wish Chiaotzu attempted to interrupt, only to be quickly killed. Once he regained his youth, he kills the Eternal Dragon so no one could ever use the Dragon Balls against him. There's a reason he remains the only villain in the series to win, only losing in the end because he never counted on Goku's heart restarting after he left.
  • Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond: If most power level claims are anything to go by, he's actually extremely weak by Namekian standards (260 at his peak, compared to the 3000 of the unnamed warriors Dodoria slaughtered easily), and he's technically not even a "real" Namekian, being half of one. Despite this, he was strong enough to be Earth's Satanic Archetype.
    • To elaborate, Piccolo, Jr. in 23rd Tournament has grown much stronger than his father. Yet, Junior was unable to defeat Raditz by himself, despite Raditz is much weaker than Dodoria! It has been stated by Guru that Kami and Piccolo became much weaker individually after they separated.
  • No-Sell: Takes the Kamehameha head on and did not receive even Clothing Damage.
  • Oh, Crap!: Inspires many of these when people realize who he is. Although he has a few himself; like realizing that Roshi knows the Evil Containment Wave, thinking Goku was going to use the Evil Containment Wave (he was doing the Kamehameha), when Tien (in the anime) uses it, and just before Goku punches a hole through his gut and he sees the shadow of the Great Ape.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Decides to destroy one section of the world once a year. His first target was Bulma's hometown West City, but was stopped by Goku before he could go that far.
  • Orcus on His Throne: For the early part of the saga, he remains on Pilaf's airship and lets his sons do the fighting for him. It isn't until Goku and his friends kill Cymbal and Tambourine that he directly intervenes.
  • Outside-Genre Foe: Before King Piccolo and his sons all of Goku's opponents have been mostly human and funny animals with some robots, androids, cyborgs, and mutants thrown in. King Piccolo's arrival marked a major shift in the story's tone and set the standards for the new enemies Goku will be facing. That said, he was anything but out of genre, as the old fantasy novels and movies which DB was inspired by had ancient demon kings as villains so often that it became cliche (case in point, Journey to the West)
  • Papa Wolf: Despite his evil, he genuinely cares about his children, and is furious when Goku kills two of them.
  • Polite Villains, Rude Heroes: He's the first in a long line of villains who is well-spoken, polite, and is complimentary to his opponents. This contrast with Goku who is blunt, and greets Piccolo by yelling at him and threatening to kill him.
  • Post-Mortem Comeback: Right after Goku ran straight through his gut, Piccolo threw up an egg that carried his offspring - his way of getting revenge for dying by the hands of Goku. Junior was definitely a powerful opponent at the time, but a subversion comes in the form of that legendary Enemy Mine between the two against Raditz... which ends with Ma Junior (Piccolo) killing Goku...
  • Power Degeneration: Says that his life is shortened when he goes to his full power. Never witnessed directly since Goku kills him soon after he goes all out.
  • Psychic Link: He has this with all his "children." He can immediately tell when they've been killed.
  • Psychic Powers: Able to levitate objects and mentally link with his children.
  • Put the "Laughter" in "Slaughter": Often laughs as he is killing people.
  • Sadist: Once he took over the world, he set all the criminals free and abolished all laws, just so he could enjoy watching humanity tear itself apart. He then had a lottery where he would destroy one section of the world for the next 36 years, all so he could enjoy the terror on people's faces during their final moments.
  • Satan: In the French and Latin American dub, they literally called him this.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: He was sealed inside an electric rice cooker for over 100 years before being released by Emperor Pilaf.
  • Shadow Archetype: Given their similar backstories, Piccolo is what Goku would have become if he embraced his ruthless Saiyan nature.
  • Shrouded in Myth: By the time of his return, only Master Roshi and the Crane Hermit remembers his initial rampage, because they were alive to witness it.
  • Smug Super: Believes himself to be the strongest in the world and that no human can ever match him. In fairness, he was right, no human ever matched him. Too bad Goku isn't a human.
  • The Sociopath: Fittingly since he is Kami's evil given life, so he naturally doesn't possess empathy and morality. He cares for nothing outside of himself, and takes great delight in causing pain and suffering to humanity just cause he can. Although he treats his children well, he still sees them as minions and them getting killed is more a matter of his pride being hurt then him really caring about them.
  • Starfish Alien: He has demonic powers, can lay eggs out of his mouth, alter his size, grow extra fingers, and can kill Shenron. It's later revealed he's a Namekian.
  • Superior Species: Firmly believes that he and his sons are this compared to humans and outright states as such.
    King Piccolo: That's the problem with the human race. No respect...for the superior species.
  • Takes One to Kill One: King Piccolo is utterly invincible to any human who didn't know the Evil Containment Wave, which kills the person who uses it. Only Goku manages to outmatch Piccolo and later his son Piccolo Jr. They are both aliens sent to Earth to save their lives.
  • Take Over the World: He was actually successful in doing this. But Goku quickly restored the natural order of things.
  • Theme Naming: A piccolo is a type of flute. His sons continue the theme, being named Piano, Tambourine, Cymbal, Drum, and Piccolo.
    • Double points for continuing the series's established pattern of Edible Theme Naming: the pronunciation matches the Japanese pronunciation of "pickle", hence his green coloration (and occasional name of "Mr. Pickle" in some translations).
  • To Create a Playground for Evil: His ultimate plan.
    King Piccolo: First, I will tell you the two words I hate the most. They are "justice" and "peace". Let me just say that I do not plan to bind you all into slavery or anything like that. Not at all. In fact, I want you to do anything you want. I'm going to abolish every law enforcement agency. You can steal, destroy, injure, and murder! No one will stop you! Evil shall be unfettered! Those who brandish the sword of justice shall be exterminated by my demons! This will be a glorious world of terror and hate!
  • Torso with a View: Goku takes him out by punching a gaping hole clean through his chest.
  • Truly Single Parent: Parent to green demons, dragons and a pterosaur man. Also Piccolo.
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: The show's status as a comical romp ends here.
  • Villain Ball: Breaks Goku's legs and left arm to render him helpless, then flies up into the air to finish him off with a dramatic attack. By the time he realizes that he forgot to take out Goku's right arm as well, he's doomed.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Becomes increasingly unhinged as his fight with Goku drags on. He was close to shivering in terror by the end and called Goku a monster.
  • Villainous Legacy: He expels an egg from his mouth mere seconds before his demise. This egg eventually hatches and gives life to Piccolo Jr., who consciously seeks to conquer the world at his father's request. Fortunately, he becomes a good character in Dragon Ball Z.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Has no problems killing Chiaotzu or beating Goku to the point of near death.


Tambourine (タンバリン, Tambarin)
Voiced by: Ryusei Nakao (Japanese), Dameon Clarke (Funimation Dub), Tony Binns (Blue Water dub), Humberto Solórzano (Latin American)

Tambourine was King Piccolo's second oldest son at the time he was released from his imprisonment and the longest lasting of the three named sons who engaged in combat (Piano lasted longer and seemed to be older, but he never fought before Goku killed him by throwing his father at him), he is by far the most evil and sadistic of the three, he was ordered by his father to hunt down and kill any martial artists who participated in the World Martial Arts Tournament to prevent him from being sealed, he becomes Goku's arch enemy for the first half of the saga because he murdered his best friend Krillin, he stole his Dragon Balls, and he destroyed his Kinto'un cloud. After these events, Goku faces off against him and loses. He eventually faces off against him again for a final showdown and Goku kills him with a Kamehameha.

  • Adaptational Jerkass: After he kills Giran while the latter was terrorizing a village, he strikes an innocent villager for trying to shake his hand in gratitude. In the original, he merely tells the shaken but still alive villager not to touch him. In the English Dub, he claims to have killed the villager for fun.
  • Asshole Victim: He killed Krillin and several other innocent people for fun, and even bragged about his murder of Krillin to Goku's face. He more than had it coming when Goku killed him in the rematch.
  • Ax-Crazy: Likes killing way too much.
  • Breath Weapon: One of his signature moves.
  • Calling Card: At the sight of his murders he would place a piece of paper which the Demon Symbol on it nearby.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Inflicts fatal ones on King Chappa, Pamput, Bacterian, Man-Wolf, Giran, and Kuririn. Many were single stroke battles.
  • Dirty Coward: Acts like an Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy when in control of a situation, but when Goku beats him senseless in the rematch, he tries to make a break for it.
  • The Dreaded: As revealed in Super, Krillin is terrified of him decades after his death; seeing an illusion of him in the Forest of Terror freaks Krillin out more than illusions of far more powerful villains like Frieza and Cell.
  • The Dragon: To King Piccolo. He is Piccolo's most powerful child before he regained his youth.
  • Evil Feels Good: He really enjoys his work of murdering people.
  • Evil Sounds Raspy: He is very raspy in the English dub.
  • Family Theme Naming: All of King Piccolo's children (Tambourine, Drum, Cymbal, Piano, Piccolo Jr.) are all named after musical instruments.
  • For the Evulz: His favorite hobby is killing people, and he takes sadistic glee in killing people and causing as much pain as possible.
  • Hero Killer: Aside from murdering many of the recurring martial artists, Tambourine was the first villain in the history of the franchise to KILL Krillin.
  • Kick the Dog: Gloats about his murder of Krillin to Goku's face.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Is on the receiving end of one of the most brutal beatdowns in the series, courtesy of Goku. Goku even stopped short of beating him to death because he wanted him to suffer longer.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: Very effective and cold-blooded when killing, often killing his victims in one hit.
  • Oh, Crap!: When he realizes that, in his second fight with Goku, that he has no chance at all at winning. Gets another one when he looks back while trying to escape and sees Goku about to fire a Kamehameha right at him.
  • Our Gargoyles Rock: Bears a resemblance to a Namekian gargoyle.
  • Psycho for Hire: His character profile lists his hobby as killing people, which is also his job. It's expanded on in the English Dub, where after he kills Giran, a bear person who Giran was bullying tries to thank him, and Tambourine promptly cuts him down, openly admitting to the bear's son that while Giran's murder was him doing his job, he killed the father just for fun.
  • Sadist: Much like his father, he enjoys killing people and causing as much pain as possible.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Mainly killing Krillin ended up impacting him to fear on death, even after he was wished back alive.
  • Smug Snake: Acts confident and cocky when he's in control. The moment Goku proves stronger than him and is ready to kill him, he breaks and runs for his life.
  • Smug Super: He is utterly convinced of his power. Most of it is justified since he easily kills the best fighters on the planet, most with a single strike like Krillin. He also scoffs at Goku when he challenges him again since he easily defeated him earlier. Then Goku beats the shit out him and he tries to run away once he realizes that he can't win.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Tries to fly away when he realizes that he's outmatched by Goku. Goku doesn't let him get away.
  • Serial Killer: Of at least 50 people, including Krillin.
  • Theme Naming: Piccolo and his minions are all named after musical instruments. Guess which one for him....
  • This Cannot Be!: His reaction when Goku beats him senseless during their rematch, right before he attempts to make a break for it.
    Tambourine: How can we of the warrior tribe be defeated by YOU?!
  • Warm-Up Boss: After Goku recovers from his fight with Tien, he easily beats Tambourine into submission and then atomizes him with a Kamehameha.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Kills Krillin without any remorse and brags about it to Goku before beating him until he lost consciousness.
  • Would You Like to Hear How They Died?: He takes the time to brag about how he killed Krillin to Goku's face.
  • Villainous Rescue: Killed Giran as the brute was terrorizing a village, but makes it obvious he didn't do it for them when he attacks one of the thankful villagers afterwards for extending his hand to him.


Cymbal (シンバル, Shinbaru)
Voiced by: Daisuke Gōri (Japanese), Brad Jackson (Funimation dub), Dean Galloway (Blue Water dub), Ricardo Hill (Latin American)

Piccolo's third youngest son. He is by far the weakest of the three sons who engages in combat, but he is still more than a match for the winners of the martial arts tournaments... not that it matters, as Tambourine murdered most of them. He was assigned to find the Dragon Balls by King Piccolo. While searching for one, he came into conflict with Yajirobe and Goku. The former engaged him in a brief fight that ended with him being cut in half and eaten. His death caused Piccolo to send Tambourine to investigate.


Drum (ドラム, Doramu)
Voiced by: Daisuke Gōri (Japanese), Bob Carter (Funimation dub), Dave Pettitt (Blue Water dub), Yamil Atala (Latin American)

Piccolo's second youngest son, Drum was born at a time when Piccolo's power was at its peak, which made him much more powerful than Cymbal or Tambourine. When Tien attempted to trap Piccolo with the Evil Containment Wave, Drum defeats him in short order. Just as Drum is about to finish Tien off, Goku makes the save and kills Drum with a single kick to the head.

  • Acrofatic: Despite being obese, he managed to dominate Tien prior Goku defeating him easily; in particular he liked Flash Stepping in front of Tien to block him from getting to Piccolo himself and behind him to attack.
  • Alien Blood: His blood is not only purple, but he is the first Namekian who bleeds purple. Although in some scenes, his blood looks pink.
  • The Brute: The strongest of the demon children, barring Ma Junior. Notably, he pretty much just pummels Tien, not even resorting to energy attacks or anything fancy.
  • Eye Scream: Goku kicks him in the face so hard that his eyeball pops out.
  • Family Theme Naming: All of King Piccolo's children (Tambourine, Drum, Cymbal, Piano, Piccolo Jr.) are all named after musical instruments.
  • Faster Than They Look: He's a big fat guy, but able to Flash Step.
  • Fat Bastard: As evil as he is obese.
  • Flash Step: His speciality. Despite his size, he could move fast enough to escape Tien's three-eyed sight, though evidently not Goku's.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Despite his massive size, Drum's pretty fast, able to get behind Tien faster than he can react. In fact his speed was the most dangerous thing about him.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Delivers one to Tien but is given one of his own by Goku.
  • One-Hit Kill: By Goku. He hit him so hard that one of his eyes shot out.
  • Taking the Bullet: In the anime, he shields Piccolo from Tien's Evil Containment Wave.
  • Theme Naming: He's named after a musical instrument.
  • Warm-Up Boss: For Goku at least. He exists just to show how much stronger Goku became after drinking the Ultra Divine Water.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: He's born in the 154th chapter and dies in the very next issue.
  • The Worf Effect: Tien was Goku's equal at the end of the 22nd World Martial Arts Tournament. He gets easily curb-stomped by Drum, although he performs a little better in the anime. When the new-and-improved Goku shows up, he takes Drum down with one kick.


Piano (ピアノ)
Voiced by: Masato Hirano (Japanese); Sonny Strait (Funimation dub), Corby Proctor (Blue Water dub), Ernesto Lezama (Latin American)

The oldest and weakest of King Piccolo's children, but also the one who lasted longest (besides Ma Junior). Demon King Piccolo created the pterodactyl-like Piano to serve as his attendant and majordomo. Piano was accidentally killed when Goku punched Piccolo so hard that he fell on his son and crushed him.

  • Dies Differently in Adaptation: In the original version, Piano is killed when Demon King Piccolo lands on him. As such, he does not make any sound when laying on the ground. In the dub, however, he whimpers feebly (though he is still motionless), which could indicate that the impact merely left him severely injured instead of dead. Later on in the fight, King Piccolo powers up, causing a small earthquake that causes Piano's body to sink into the rubble and disappear. In the original, this just got rid of his already dead corpse. In the English dub, this is what actually kills him and not his father falling on him.
  • Everything's Better with Dinosaurs: He looks like a small, wingless, humanoid pteranodon.
  • Expy: Of Baramos, another pterodactyl headed cloaked humanoid from Dragon Quest III. The game was drawn by Toriyama and during the same year as the King Piccolo Saga.
  • Family Theme Naming: All of King Piccolo's children (Tambourine, Drum, Cymbal, Piano, Piccolo Jr.) are all named after musical instruments.
  • Flight: The only real power he displays is levitation.
  • Non-Action Guy: He stays out of combat to advise his dad.
  • Number Two: To Piccolo. He mostly acts as an advisor and gives Piccolo information about the world.
  • Servile Snarker: Though he is still completely loyal to his father.
  • Shapeshifting: In one of the NES RPGs, he shapeshifts into Goku to fight.
  • Squishy Wizard: He displays a few non combat powers but easily goes down after Piccolo lands on him.
  • Theme Naming: Like the rest of Piccolo's family, he is named after a musical instrument.
  • The Unfought: He never gets a true fight and is last seen getting crushed by King Piccolo.

     Piccolo Jr. 

Independent Villains


Pteranodon (プテラノドン, Puteranodon)

Voiced by (Japanese): Hiroshi Otake
Voiced by (English): Ian James Corlett (BLT dub)

A giant pteranodon who kidnaps Bulma shortly after she meets Goku in the wilderness. He has the honour of being the first antagonist fought in the whole franchise.

  • Ptero Soarer: He's on the chunky side for a hollow-boned pterosaur, but otherwise completely Played Straight.
  • Starter Villain: You don't get much plainer than this guy. Even Goku at the very start of the series could defeat him effortlessly.

     Bear Thief 

Bear Thief (山賊熊, Sanzoku Kuma)
Voiced by (Japanese): Masaharu Satō
Voiced by (English): Michael Donovan (BLT dub), Dameon Clarke (Funimation dub), Steve Olson (Blue Water dub)
Voiced by (Latin American): Carlos Magaña

A bear thief who attacks Goku and Bulma while they're escorting Master Roshi's Turtle back to the ocean.

     Monster Carrot / Boss Rabbit 

Monster Carrot / Boss Rabbit (兎人参化, Toninjinka)
Voiced by (Japanese): Hiroshi Ōtake
Voiced by (English): Ian James Corlett (BLT dub), Duncan Brannan (Funimation); Bill Townsley (Dragon Ball: Origins), Byron Close (Blue Water dub)
Voiced by (Latin American): Ismael Castro

The leader of the Rabbit Mob who can transform living beings into carrots with a single touch. After he turns Bulma into a carrot, Goku, Yamcha, and Puar defeated him and the Rabbit Mob. Goku forces him to change Bulma back and he sends them to the moon as punishment.

  • Cool Shades: Never seen without them.
  • Killer Rabbit: Thanks to his gang and magic touch.
  • Logical Weakness: He has to actually touch people to turn them into carrots. Goku gets around it by beating him senseless with the Power Pole.
  • The Magic Touch: His ability to turn any living being he touched into a carrot.
  • Moon Rabbit: Monster Carrot’s fate pays homage to this Chinese myth.
  • Non-Action Guy: Relies on his thugs for muscle. Carrot never threw a punch against Goku or Yamcha.
  • Plot-Irrelevant Villain: The only impact his lone episode has is Bulma's change of outfit.
  • Smug Snake: Acts like a big shot since no one can touch him without turning into a carrot and he threatened to eat Bulma if Goku didn't allow himself to be beating up by his men. He gives up the moment Goku hits him.
  • Squishy Wizard: No doubt he’s quite formidable, but he’s defeated quite easily by Goku, Yamaha and Puar in part because they didn’t allow him to touch them directly.
  • Story-Breaker Power: He has the ability to turn anyone who touches him into a carrot. Touch this guy in anyway and you're produce. Thankfully, he isn't all that strong and gives up just by being hit by Goku's Power Pole and is never seen again since he can easily take out people who don't know about his power.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: So Monster Carrot and his goons were placed on the moon by Goku, but didn’t Master Roshi/Jackie Chun blow up the moon?. He and his minions are seen on a panel from the Dragon Ball Super manga, when Merus passes the moon.

     Pirate Robot 

Pirate Robot (海賊ロボ, Kaizoku Robo; 番人ロボット, Bannin Robotto)

A powerful robot who attacks Goku, Krillin, and Bulma in the Pirate Cave.

     Demon World Demons 

Shula (シュラ, Shura)
Gola (ゴラ Gora)

Shula voiced by: Toshio Furukawa (Japanese)
Shula voiced by: John Burgmeier (English)

Gola voiced by: Daisuke Gōri (Japanese)
Gola voiced by: Mike McFarland(Funimation)
Gola voiced by: Steve Olson (Blue Water)

Melee voiced by: Masako Katsuki (Japanese)
Melee voiced by: Cynthia Cranz (Funimation)

Three demons who live in the Demon World.

Movie Villains

     King Gurumes 

King Gurumes (グルメス 大王, Gurumesu Daiō)
Voiced by: Shuichiro Moriyama (Japanese), Mike Reynolds (Harmony Gold dub), Gary Chalk (BLT dub), Jeremy Inman (Funimation dub), Marcos Patiño (Latin American)

The villain of the very first Dragon Ball movie, Curse of the Blood Rubies. Gurumes was a human king who discovered cursed Blood Rubies on his land, which mutated him into an obese monster with an insatiable appetite for rich foods. Gurumes oppressed his people to gain more rubies and sent his minions to find the Dragon Balls so as to wish for food to satisfy his hungernote , which brought him into conflict with Goku and friends. Gurumes was defeated when Penny, the village girl who brought Goku to fight him, wished on the Dragon Balls to undo all the harm caused by the Blood Rubies. This restored peace and stability to the kingdom and restored Gurumes to his human form, allowing him to enjoy life again.

  • Anti-Villain: In context, King Gururmes goal with the Dragon Balls is to wish the hunger that destroys him; thus freeing himself of his corruption. Logically this could have wished away the Blood Rubies that caused it like what Penny ends until doing.
  • Evil Overlord: Becomes this after he finds the Blood Rubies.
  • Expy: Gurumes only appears in Dragon Ball: Curse of the Blood Rubies, a retelling of Goku's origin, with Gurumes replacing Pilaf. Like Pilaf, Gurumes is an inhuman king who wants the Dragon Balls for purely selfish reasons.
  • Fat Bastard: Continuously eat and still complain about being hungry.
  • Gonk: Even in his human form, Gurumes is obese and covered in warts.
  • Greed: His motivation for wanting the Blood Rubies and the Dragon Balls.
  • Heel–Face Turn: The only movie Big Bad to reform.
  • Horror Hunger: Eats endlessly, but can never become full.
  • Meaning Ful Name / Punny Name: Gurumes = Gourmet
  • One-Winged Angel: Right as Goku encounters him, Gurumes mutates even further into an even bigger, less human monster.
  • Villainous Glutton: His only motivation is sating his hunger. His emblem even has a fork on it.
  • Was Once a Man: Turned into a monster by the curse of the Blood Rubies.

     Pasta and Bongo 

Pasta (パスタ, Pasta) and Bongo (ボンゴ, Bongo)
Bongo (left) and Pasta (right)
Pasta voiced by: Mami Koyama (Japanese), Edie Mirman (Harmony Gold dub), Teryl Rothery (BLT dub), Kate Oxley (Funimation dub), Isabel Martiñón (Latin American)
Bongo/Domu voiced by: Gorō Naya (Japanese), Michael McConnohie (Harmony Gold dub), Robert Smith (BLT dub), Jonathan Brooks (Funimation dub), Mario Sauret (Latin American)

The two henchmen of Gurumes. Bongo is a large man with a three section staff and Pasta is a attractive female gunslinger.

  • Amusing Injuries: Bongo seemed to have survived being flattened by Gurumes as he's seen lying unconcius near Pasta in the ending.
  • Brains and Brawn: Bongo is the brawn and Pasta is the brains.
  • The Bully: Bongo is seen bullying villagers in the beginning
  • Dark Chick: Pasta isn't a martial artist but she's competent in battle.
  • Dub Name Change: In the Ocean dub Pasta has her named changed to Raven. Her name is changed to Mallia in the Harmony Gold Dub.
  • Expy: Similar to more competent versions of Shu and Mai.
  • Evil Redhead: Pasta. Strangely, one of her English names (Raven) refers to black hair.
  • Fighting with Chucks / Bifurcated Weapon: Bongo uses a three section staff against Goku.
  • The Goggles Gotta Go: Pasta manages to stun Yamcha once her cap and goggles are knocked off.
  • Greed: Both are Only in It for the Money.
  • Thanks for the Mammary: Yamcha accidentally grabs Pasta's breast in a fight.
  • Theme Naming: After food (“Bongo” is a reference to “vongole” - clams).
  • Samus Is a Girl: Yamcha didn't realize Pasta's gender until her goggles and cap were knocked off and he touches her chest. Seeing this activates Yamcha's fear of women and he retreats with the gang.


Lucifer (ルシフェル, Rushiferu)
Voiced by: Nachi Nozawa (Japanese), Mike McFarland (Funimation dub), José Lavat (Latin American)

The villain of the second Dragon Ball movie, Sleeping Princess in Devil's Castle. Lucifer is a demon nobleman who rules the titular Devil's Castle in the distant Devil's Hand mountains. When Goku and Krillin petition Master Roshi to become his pupils, he first tasks them with bringing back the beautiful Sleeping Princess (on account of him being a dirty old lech). When Goku and friends get there, Lucifer and his army capture them just as he finishes his plan to destroy the sun, using the Sleeping Princess — which turns out to be a huge gemstone — to power a gigantic ray gun. After a fight, Goku's Kamehameha knocks the cannon out of alignment, pointing it right at Lucifer, destroying both him and his castle.

  • Anachronism Stew: He lives in a medieval castle, builds a futuristic laser cannon, and watches black-and-white television.

     The Mifan Empire 

Mifan (ミーファン, Mīfan)

A nation in the distant east in the third Dragon Ball movie, Mystical Adventure. In the Alternate Continuity of the first three Dragon Ball films, Mifan is the home of different versions of various characters:

  • Emperor Chiaotzu: The naive but kindhearted child ruler.
  • Tien: Chiaotzu's best friend, torn between his loyalty to the emperor and the treacherous Tsurusen'nin.
  • Tsurusen'nin: Chiaotzu's prime minister and Tien teacher in the martial arts, plotting to usurp the throne.
  • Tao Pai Pai: This world's version is acting as Tsurusen'nin's assassin and enforcer.
  • Lieutenant Blue: An alternate General Blue, captain of the palace guard and a loyal servant of Emperor Chiaotzu. Still executed by Tao.
  • Sergeant Metallic: Same as the Red Ribbon android, only working for Tsurusen'nin now.
  • Pilaf, Mai, and Shu: Not villains, but engineers who create a working Dragon Radar for Shen—who then has Tao kill them.

In a very loose retelling of the Red Ribbon and Tien Shinhan Sagas, The Crane Hermit has Tao collect the Dragon Balls, planning to use them to conquer the world after killing Chiaotzu. However, Tao is killed once again by Goku, Tien rebels against his villainous master, and the day is saved.

  • Alternate Continuity: A 'what if' story to the original Dragon Ball.
  • Death by Adaptation: Pilaf, Mai, and Shu, as opposed to the mainstream series. Also, while Tao Pai Pai and Tsurusen'nin both survive their defeats in canon, here there's a very likely chance that they are dead since there's no indication that they survived and the Dragon Ball movies don't continue after Mystical Adventure.
  • The Empire: When under Tao and the Crane Elder's command.


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