Premiere: February 26, 1986
Finale: April 19, 1989
Total Episodes: 153



Dragonball was creator Akira Toriyama's second manga turned anime, following his original series entitled Dr. Slump. It is a parody of an old Chinese legend, which incorporates slapstick humor and stylized comedic violence to produce a wildly entertaining animated series. The show's theme mainly focused on humor, but later in the series as the main character, Goku, became an adult, the mood of the show took a more serious turn and the focus became the fighting.

In the Dragonball story, there are three sagas which span the length of Goku's childhood. The first was the Pilaf Saga, in which Goku and the other good guys embarked on a search for the mystical Dragonballs and ended up having to fight a bad guy named Lord Pilaf. The second was the Red Ribbon Saga, in which Goku, now older and more powerful than he was in the Pilaf Saga, takes on an evil corporation's combat army. This saga is escpecially good, with a lot of battle scenes in big cities and a lot of urban chaos, which is the mark of good anime :) The third and final saga of the original Dragonball series was the Daimao Saga, in which Goku, now entering adulthood, fights against a great evil warrior named Piccolo-Daimao. This saga is also very good, as it encompasses the time period in which the show changed into its more mature, more violent theme.

Dragonball was a very successful series, and as Goku enters adulthood the show changes from being centered around humor to being centered around combat and more mature themes, which led directly into its sequel, Dragonball Z.


Premiere: April 26, 1989
Finale: January 31, 1996
Total Episodes: 291



Dragonball Z was the more mature, teen-adult oriented sequel to the huge hit series, Dragonball. This show takes over where Dragonball ended, when Goku is all grown up, married, and has a son named Gohan. This cartoon became one of the most popular anime series of all time, and is still huge today. It is being distributed to many countries and dubbed into many different languages, and carries a gigantic worldwide audience. The appeal of Dragonball Z comes from its intensity and more grown-up feel. Whereas Dragonball was too funny to be involving, Dragonball Z plays on suspense and violence to make the experience much deeper, and thus much more enjoyable to mature audiences.

In Dragonball Z there are five sagas of action. The first is the Saiyajin Saga, in which Goku meets his older brother for the first time, and learns the truth about his heritage; then is forced to do combat with his brother and two other Saiyajin warriors. The second is the Freeza saga, in which the Z Warriors travel to the Mystical Planet Namek in order to recover the Namekian Dragonballs to wish some of their friends back to life, but discover that another group of people is also after the Dragonballs, one of whom is the ruthless space pirate, Freeza. This saga is the one in which the blonde-haired, green-eyed Super Saiyajin makes its debut. The third saga is the Garlc Jr. Saga, about the son of an old enemy of the Z Warriors who escapes from a void called the Dead Zone and starts up with the usual bad guy crap. This saga wasn't very exciting, sort of a "creative bathroom break" for Akira Toriyama. It also looses points because it occupies the time period when Goku is still missing in outer space after the Freeza battle. The fourth saga is the Android Saga, in which the heroes have to fight against super-powerful androids who threaten to destory the entire world if they are not stopped, but after the first two androids are defeated, the Z Warriors discover that the most powerful enemy they have ever faced is being born, the indomitable Cell. This leads into a series called the Cell Game which is excellent. The fifth saga is the Buu Saga, in which an ancient demon named Majin Buu is resurrected from his dormance and proceeds to destory much of the universe and threaten the Z Warriors. There were also 13 Dragonball Z movies and 2 TV Specials. These are all top-quality anime, and they continue to sell like hotcakes.

Dragonball Z ended when its creator, Akira Toriyama, lost interest in the project and decided to move on. However, the other producers and managers who owned pieces of the Dragonball pie decided that they wanted to continue the series and milk it for all it could be worth. This is what gave rise to the third and final Dragonball series, Dragonball GT.


Premiere: February 7, 1996
Finale: November 21, 1997
Total Episodes: 64



Dragonball GT is the third and final series in the Dragonball anime universe. It is set ten years after the end of Dragonball Z. This series regresses somewhat from the progress that the producers had made with Z, because it goes back to the original theme of humor and slapstick comedy, with total emphasis on Goku. The fans reacted poorly to this, and thus Dragonball GT became popular in its late days, however this series was doomed from the beginning simply because it did not involve Akira Toriyama.

Dragonball GT encompasses two sagas. The first is the Bebi Saga, in which Goku is accidentally wished back into a little kid, and so he, Trunks and Pan head off into space to find the Dragonballs and undo the wish. This series is the one for which GT was named, from the words "Grand Tour," the same as with cars called GT (Grand Touring). While on this space adventure, Goku, Trunks, and Pan get into all sorts of trouble, and they ecounter and cyborg named Bebi, who returns to earth and creates a lot of trouble for the Z Warriors. The second saga is the Evil Shenlong Saga, in which a battle with an android called Super 17 leaves much of the earth in ruins, and when the Dragonballs are used in an effort to restore the world, the dragon who is summoned turns out to be a cursed evil Shenlong, who gives rise to seven Evil Shenlongs. These Evil Shenlongs are the most powerful bad guys in all of Dragonball-Z-GT. At the end of GT, Goku fuses with the Dragonballs to become the ultimate being, and the story ends.