Monday, 22 September 2014

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 13: Goku, Defeated! Review (Akira Toriyama)


I’m guessing Terminator is a favourite movie of Akira Toriyama’s because the current plotline reeks heavily of it - except it’s reversed. Trunks, Vegeta’s son, travels back in time to before Dr Gero and his androids turn the world into hell, to warn Son Goku and co. This gives them the time to train and prepare for the fight, not to mention help Goku overcome his heart disease with futuristic medicine. Also, Vegeta reveals that he too can turn into a Super Saiyan! 

The problem with a massive ongoing series with multiple, succeeding story arcs is that some stories are just better and the weaker ones pale in comparison. Like the Saiyan story arc that kicked off the series was great and laid the foundation for Dragon Ball Z. Then Akira Toriyama raised the stakes with the epic Freeza story arc. Now we’re onto the arc that has to follow Freeza - the killer androids on Earth storyline - and it’s not as good. That’s not to say this arc itself isn’t enjoyable, it’s just that it really isn’t on the same level and so I’m less enthusiastic.

The fights are still fun and even when it’s Vegeta (who I’m liking more and more, despite his evilness) and some androids I couldn’t care less about. If there’s one thing Toriyama does superbly, it’s fight scenes. In fact, I was surprised that the rating for this book is “all ages” given the brutal killings the androids perform and the vicious way Vegeta defeats one of them. But the last book had a panel of domestic violence that was brushed off immediately as “comedy” so I suppose the ratings system doesn’t mean jack once you reach a certain level of popularity! 

The androids aren’t as personable or interesting as Freeza, Vegeta, and the other villains in this series have been - they don't even have names, they're just Androids #19 and #20! They’re just soulless killers. Yawn. But that wasn’t the only thing that annoyed me in this volume. Yamcha is maybe the most worthless fighter character ever. He’s always the first casualty, he never helps, and he’s a total non-entity. Guess what his contribution to this volume is? That's right, becoming the first casualty! Just get rid of this dude for good, he’s dead weight.  

The other thing was Son Goku’s stupidity. He was told by Trunks when he would be sick and in what way. He was then given medicine to cure the sickness. So at the time he knew he was going to be sick, and he does become sick, why doesn’t he have the medicine on him there and then? What’s it doing all the way back in his house? So because of his stupidity, he’s taken out of the fight immediately and has to be flown home to take his medicine. What a dolt! I’m liking Goku less and less as this series continues. 

I’m hoping this android arc doesn’t last as long as the Freeza one because I’m really not into it. Another book, maybe two tops, is all I can stomach of these dull characters - bring on Buu!

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 13: Goku, Defeated!

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