Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 2: Son Gohan and Piccolo Daimao Review (Akira Toriyama)

With Son Goku dead and in the Underworld, Piccolo takes Son Gohan off to be trained - the Saiyans are on their way and Gohan might be their only chance against them. Meanwhile, Goku is trained by the Lord of Worlds in Hell, and the others go to Heaven to train. But will they be strong enough to fight Vegeta and Nappa, the remaining two Saiyans, when they arrive in one year?

The first half of the book is just ok. It’s essentially just the characters training. Piccolo takes four-year-old(!) Son Gohan to what looks like Akira Toriyama’s version of the Savage Land with roaming T-Rexs, with the idea to leave him to fend for himself for six months and then training him for the other six months. It’s a bit harsh but Piccolo eases up a bit on the kid, showing that he’s a much softer character than he was in earlier books. 

Meanwhile Goku trains with the Lord of Worlds in what was, for me, the funniest sequence yet in the series. The Lord of Worlds loves bad jokes (sample: Do you have pig’s feet? Yes I do. Wear shoes and maybe nobody’ll notice!) and has a pet monkey called Bubbles. A large part of Goku’s training involves him having to catch Bubbles on a small planet with gravity ten times that of Earth - the crazy look on his face as he struggles to run after the gurning Bubbles was ridiculously funny! 

With the training over and the year of waiting past, the book picks up once the Saiyans arrive and the real story can begin. But the cast have a really tough time to start with, especially as Raditz was the weakest of the three and he managed to take out Son Goku with him! Another major character bites the dust before the end of this book and Kuririn finally gets some time to shine with his new special moves. 

The training half of the book slowed down the narrative for me but the second half reignited it again so I’m hoping here on out we’ll have non-stop awesomeness for the rest of the Saiyan storyline. It’s a great second volume though nonetheless and had some genuinely funny moments amidst the high octane action.

Dragon Ball Z, Volume 2: Son Gohan and Piccolo Daimao

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