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Trivia / Dragon Ball

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Trivia relating to the manga/series as a whole:

  • Blooper: It's not uncommon for whoever is in charge of the dialogue (whether it be Funimation, Toei Animation, or Akira Toriyama himself) to slip-up and have Vegeta use "Goku" instead of "Kakarot". This usually ends up being corrected in later revisions of whatever it happens in.
  • Channel Hop: A weird case due to studio acquisitions. 20th Century Fox distributes the more recent films in Japan, while Funimation handles international distribution. As of 2019, Disney distributes those films in Japan through Fox, while Sony distributes the same internationally through Funimation.
  • Creator's Favorite:
    • Toriyama has admitted that Mr. Satan is one of his favorite characters and he gets a lot of focus in the Buu Saga. Prior to Mr. Satan, Piccolo was believed to be Toriyama's favorite, as he stated that, despite finding his Heel–Face Turn too cliché, he still managed to remain a cool character nonetheless.
    • Naotoshi Shida, one of the animators of Toei, states his favorite character to draw is Android 16.
  • Fan Nickname:
    • "Mystic Gohan" for his Buu Saga power-up, which was never given a name.note 
    • "Mirai Trunks" to Future Trunks, just plain "Mirai", "Mirai Briefs" in some fanfiction when he returns to the normal timeline and lives with the "other" Trunks. Crosses with Gratuitous Japanese. Became Ascended Fanon in Dragon Ball Super, with Beerus calling him "Mirai" in the Japanese dub.
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    • "Kushami" (Japanese for "sneeze") for Lunch's blonde form, "Ranchi" (the Japanese approximation of "Lunch") for her blue-haired form. The first was coined in early manga summaries before the series was translated, and they are/were very common Fanon.
    • Majin Buu has several, depending on the people he's absorbed (the main ones being "Buutenks"/"Super Buu 2", "Buuccolo"/"Super Buu 1.5" and "Buuhan"/"Super Buu 3").
    • Frieza, his family, and his race as a whole, have been given the name "Icejins." They have also been called "Changelings". In the fan comic Dragon Ball Multiverse, they're called "Frost Demons", and this name is used by Cell in the English translation of Dragon Ball Xenoverse.
    • For nearly all of the male Son family and other characters, it's possible for those who are indulgent enough in the Chinese dubs to make use of the Chinese-to-Japanese Bilingual Bonus to name them via their Chinese/pinyin names respectively: Son Goku -> "Sun Wukong", Son Gohan -> "Sun Wufan", Son Goten -> "Sun Wutian", Tenshinhan -> "Tianjinfan", and Muten Roshi -> "Wutian Laoshi".
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    • Attributive nouns are regularly used to distinguish the same character at different arcs/ages. Thus, the adolescent Goku is always "Kid Goku", and the pure, original form of Majin Buu becomes "Kid Buu".
  • Fountain of Expies:
  • Gintama notably parodied a scene from DBZ where Piccolo fired a Special Beam Cannon at Goku and Raditz. In the English dub of Gintama, they had the original English voice of Piccolo voice the Piccolo stand-in in the scene.
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  • Inspiration for the Work: The manga came into existence due to Akira Toriyama's wife saying how her husband would watch kung fu movies when drawing Doctor Slump when him and his editor were considering giving up on brainstorming their next manga project. This statement gave the idea of writing a kung fu series and the rest is history...
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  • Recast as a Regular: Several voice actors have voiced minor or unimportant characters before going on to voice major or important characters in the Dragon Ball franchise.
  • Talking to Himself:
    • Japanese version:
      • Veteran voice actress Masako Nozawa voices Goku, as well as both his sons and his deceased father Bardock. Not to mention Tullece.
      • Both Pan and Videl are played by Yuko Minaguchi
      • Cooler is voiced by Ryusei Nakao, same as Frieza. The voice itself is also essentially the same, differing in the delivery rather than timbre.
      • Mayumi Tanaka voices Kuririn, Yajirobe and later Uranai Baba, who was originally voiced by Junpei Takiguchi.
    • English version:
      • Sean Schemmel played Adult!Goku, and King Kai.
      • In the Funimation dub, Christopher Sabat plays Vegeta, Piccolo, and Yamcha. While the latter doesn't have too much screentime, it doesn't change the fact that Sabat is talking to himself a majority of the time, especially through most of the Saiyan arrival scenes in the redub. Sabat also voices several other characters over the course of the series, including (but not limited to) Shenron, Nappa, Mr. Popo, Korin, Recoome, and Zarbon.
      • Goten and Videl are both are voiced by Kara Edwards.
    • In the Latin American Spanish dub this is generally subverted, as multiple characters given to the same actor tend to not interact with one another, though straight examples aren't unheard of:
      • Laura Torres plays both child!Goku, child!Gohan and child!Goten.
      • Mario Castañeda, who voices teenage and adult!Goku, voices Bardock, Tullece, Colonel Silver, Young!Muten Roshi and Pamput. This is one of the cases in which it's played straight, as adult Goku obviously talked with Tullece in the 3rd movie, and he had a mind conversation with Bardock in a filler scene during the battle against Frieza.
      • Carlos Segundo is known as the voice of Piccolo Daimaku and Piccolo Jr., but also Mr. Popo, Kami, Master Tsuru, the Mummy, Anton the Great, Gora, and Hyoga Shaolong. Given that Piccolo Daimaku/Piccolo Jr. and Kami are Literal Split Personalities and Mr. Popo is Kami's servant, this is another case in which it is inevitably played straight.
      • Patricia Acevedo voices Chi-Chi and Chiaotzu. This is the one case where it was completely averted, as the two characters never interacted.
      • Humberto Solórzano voiced Raditz, King Cold, Tamborine, King Chappa and Akuman. In this case the only time there was an actual example of Talking to Himself was when King Chappa was one of Tamborine's hit targets.
  • What Could Have Been: Has its own page.
  • The Wiki Rule: Dragon Ball Wiki and Dragon Ball Universe Wiki.
  • Word of Dante: The claims that the series was originally intended to end with the Saiyan or, more popularly, the Frieza Saga. This is actually a fandom invention as Toriyama never stated that. What he did say was he didn't intend for the series to last as long as it did or to explode in popularity the way it did. The Saiyan and especially Frieza Sagas are just very obvious points where fans can say "well, it could have stopped here and it'd be a fairly clean finish".

Trivia relating to the anime:

  • Beam Me Up, Scotty!: Oolong never wished for Bulma's panties. He wishes for panties from a hot babe.note  This is no indication that they belonged to Bulma.
  • Cross-Dressing Voices:
    • Japanese version:
      • Masako Nozawa provides the voice of Goku.
      • Mayumi Tanaka provides the voice of Kuririn and Yajirobe.
      • Junpei Takiguchi provided the voice of Fortuneteller Baba.
    • English version:
      • In the Harmony Gold dub, Barbara Goodson provided the voice of Zero (Goku), while Wanda Nowicki provided the voice of Bongo (Krillin).
      • In the BLT Productions dub, Saffron Henderson provided the voice of Goku.
      • In the Funimation dub, Stephanie Nadolny provided the voice of young Goku, while Laurie Steele provided the voice of young Krillin.
  • Dueling Dubs: See the page for more details.
  • Fan Edit: Dragon Ball Recut, which removes as much filler from the anime adaptation as possible, similarly to what Dragon Ball Kai was to Dragon Ball Z. Information about Dragon Ball Recut can be found on this Kanzenshuu thread.
  • Invisible Advertising: A theory about why the Harmony Gold dub never caught on. YouTuber Geekdom101 mentions in a video that no time slots, commercials or advertising were found for that version when airing in a handful of American television markets. This lack of promotion may have been what led to the end of Harmony Gold's version.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes:
    • The original broadcast audio for Dragon Ball and DBZ taken from VCR recordings of each episode's initial broadcast in the Kanto region of Japan. This audio is highly sought-out as it offers the closest quality to the series' master tapes, which Toei wiped both for economic reasons and because executives at the time were still skeptical of home media. Also applies to Dragon Ball GT to a certain extent, as despite Toei still possessing the original audio masters, they've never put this audio on any official releases, although TV airings in Japan still use it.
    • The first two English dubs of Dragon Ball, the 1987 Frontier Enterprises dub and the 1989 Harmony Gold dub, are notoriously difficult to find. In the case of the latter, VCR recordings have existed of a telefilm that combines the first and third theatrical films into a single product, but the episodes themselves weren't available at all until March 1, 2020 when a superfan obtained VHS copies from someone who had a stash of anime VHS tapes from the early '90s in his basement. The Frontier dub meanwhile, has no surviving audio or footage whatsoever. It was most likely screened exclusively on Japan Airlines flights, with no plans to bring them to English speaking airwaves. As a result, it's generally agreed upon that the Frontier dub is likely lost media.
  • The Pete Best: Funimation's first in-house dub of the second Dragon Ball film, Sleeping Princess in Devil's Castle, featured Broadway actress Leslie Alexander as Bulma, which was her only time she voiced the character. This is also her only anime role to date. Tiffany Vollmer and Monica Rial are much better associated with the character, the former providing her voice up until the end of the 2000s, while the latter took over from 2010 onward. For a long time, Alexander wasn't even listed among Bulma's English voice actresses on The Other Wiki.
  • Pop Culture Urban Legends: There's a very oft-repeated one floating around in Hungary, which claims the series got canceled because a kid jumped off a building/out a window, thinking the Nimbus would save him. There is nothing to confirm this, yet many, many fans consider it a fact. In reality, the show was canceled because the TV station that had carried it got into trouble due to the series' timeslot and rating — they handled it as a children's cartoon but the media authorities saw it as strictly meant for adults. It is also known that a 14-year-old named Karcsi threatened the broadcasting company with suicide upon hearing about the cancellation. But the one about a kid jumping to his death is, most likely, a legend.
  • Playing Against Type: Kenji Utsumi had it half and half when he voiced Commander Red (no pun intended). Although Commander Red is nonetheless a military dictator, which fit one aspect of the roles Utsumi played, he's also extraordinarily short, something that Utsumi wasn't known to play as. He usually voiced giant characters.
  • Recycled Script: The Dragon Ball movies are all very loose adaptations of story arcs from the original manga and TV series:
    • Curse of the Blood Rubies adapts the first Dragon Ball hunt, with the original character King Gurumes substituting Emperor Pilaf as the ultimate antagonist. In another variation of this, the 1989 Harmony Gold English dub, the 1995 Funimation/BLT Productions English dub, and the 2010 Funimation English dub all use the same ADR script adaptation, with some small variations in dialogue and name changes.
    • Sleeping Princess in Devil's Castle starts off with a sub-plot involving Goku and Krillin being sent to find the titular Princess (eventually revealed to be a precious diamond) for Master Roshi, just like when they were sent to find a cute girl for Roshi in the manga.
    • Mystical Adventure combines the Red Ribbon Army and 22nd Tenkaichi Budōkai arcs and puts them in an entirely different setting.
    • The Lord Slug movie matches the plot of the Piccolo Daimaoh Saga. An evil Namekian wishes for his youth and power. This one is painfully obvious.
    • And the tenth anniversary movie The Path to Power retells the first arc of the first search of the Dragon Balls, but with the Red Ribbon Army as the main antagonists.
  • Role Reprise: In the English Dub, Copy-Vegeta is voiced by Brian Drummond, the voice of Vegeta in the Ocean Group Dub.
  • So My Kids Can Watch: In the Latin American Spanish dub, Mario Castañeda at first refused to voice adult Goku in 1997 because he was not sure if the fans were going to accept a change of voice to the main character (knowing that in Japan, despite the character growing up, Goku continued to be voiced by Masako Nozawa); but it was due to the fact that his son Arturo Castañeda, who was 8 years old at the time, insisted that he voiced Goku that he decided to accept the role. Arturo himself would go on to play Whis in Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ and Dragon Ball Super.

The franchise is the Trope Namer for:

Miscellaneous Trivia:

  • Fat Buu, Uranai Baba, Mr. Satan/Hercule, Universe 7's Kaiōshin, Pan, Bra, and Uub are the only characters in the entire franchise who have never died during the original series. They would all be indirectly killed in Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ and Dragon Ball Super by Frieza's destroying the planet (and being quickly undone), with the exception of Bra (who wasn't born yet), Buu (who wouldn't by harmed by such a thing because he can survive in space), and Kaiōshin (his future counterpart, however, did die at the hands of Dabra or Goku Black).

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