Saturday, 20 September 2014

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 12: The Boy From The Future Review (Akira Toriyama)

The insane fight between Son Goku as the Super Saiyan and Freeza on the dying planet Namek concludes in the first third of the book. As you’d expect, it’s very dramatic and tense, even if you know Son Goku’s going to win. And, of course, afterwards everyone who died is brought back to life so all’s well that ends well! 


I knew Son Goku was coming back, but Freeza? My heart sank and I thought this was going to be the first Dragon Ball Z book that I would hate. Because at this point, I’m done with Freeza. The fact that he’s been patched up and brought his bigger, more powerful dad (yeah, he was a kid!) with him to Earth made me feel tired all of a sudden - Akira Toriyama beating this storyline deep into the ground, etc. 

Well, me of little faith! I should’ve known that Toriyama knew dredging Freeza back up would annoy his readers which is why he’s used here as an introduction to a powerful new character: Trunks! And he’s a good guy for once! 

I won’t go into his backstory because it’s full of fun spoilers, about his parentage, about … actually I’ll stop there! But he sets up the next big Dragon Ball Z storyline: killer androids! Dr Gero, who worked for the Red Ribbon Army in the original Dragon Ball series, has created some androids that’ve become too powerful and self-aware and have gone on a rampage in South City - only Son Goku and co. can stop them! 

What really dragged the book down for me was seeing Goku hitting his wife Chi-Chi in one panel! Even if he didn’t mean to hit her so hard, he did mean to hit her, which makes him kind of a dick! I was very disappointed and quite shocking to see that side of him. I mean, she was screaming at his face but still, you don’t smack your wife around, Goku! I guess becoming the Super Saiyan shortened his temper or something? It was still jarring to see in a kids’ book! 

Dragon Ball Z Vol 12 is basically a bridge book. It wraps up the Freeza storyline once and for all, resets the characters, and then sets up the next story arc. At the moment the androids don’t seem very interesting but I’m sure Toriyama will make it work. Let’s just ease off on the domestic violence, eh?

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 12: The Boy From The Future

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