Oh boy, where do I begin. Ive seen many people here say that Dragon Ball Super is garbage and that GT is much better which I strongly disagree with. I never hated Super, despite what some people want me to. And today, I will be telling you why GT is bad, and why Super is better. I know I will anger some people out there, but I hope you can at least read this this. I will be splitting this essay into two parts.
Part I: Why GT is horrible
Chapter I: The disastrous first impression
Dragon Ball GT is regarded as the black sheep of the Dragon Ball franchise, and for good reason. The first 20-or-so episodes are so childish that it feels like I’m watching the Pokémon anime, something that nobody should EVER be reminded of. Trunks dressing up like a woman in a failed attempt at humor, Pan being stolen by bees, etc. It’s also stupid unnecessary that they reverted Goku back into a toddler just to appeal to the people who watched the original Dragon Ball. It eliminates all the character development Goku went through. Also, why didn’t anybody just make him an adult again with the Earth or Namekian Dragon Balls? If they can turn someone into a kid they should be able to turn someone into an adult. O wait, it’s because Goku liked being a kid again for some reason. And GT fanboys say he’s smarter than Z Goku.
Chapter II: The unsupportive supporting cast
The only characters that are ever really centered on is Goku, Pan and Trunks for a little bit, then later on Vegeta, but it’ still mostly Goku. This is why GT (an abbreviation of Grand Tour) was humorously nicknamed Goku Time. The supporting cast may as well not exist at all. In Super, though it is a lot of Goku and Vegeta, still focuses on characters like Gohan, Piccolo, Krillin, Tien, and even Goten and Trunks, characters that are given the middle finger in Goku Time. Now, I will give a little credit to this show, because Piccolo’s death was a pretty good scene, but the problem emerges when you remember that Piccolo doesn’t appear up to this point, so, if you only watched Goku Time without watching anything else, you would see this random green dude who everybody acts like they know randomly die and everybody is sad. You can’t have a sad scene without establishing the character. This is why Piccolo’s death in Z actually works. He actually existed in the series before than.
Chapter III: The emotionless transformations and fights
In Z, a new transformation was an event. It was more than just looks. They characters built up to it. Training, emotional sequences etc. But in Goku Time, its Goku getting is tail pulled out. A literal pull if you will. The fights are just as
bad. They have no emotional weight many of the fights in DB, Z and Super had.
Chapter IV: The hollow villains
Unlike DB and Z and Super (which we will get to later) with memorable villains with actual personalities and motives, Goku Time has boring villains with no build up apart of Baby. Super 17 and Omega Shenron have no motivation and no personality apart from evil man. Unlike Frieza and Cell, two extremely iconic villains, who have very memorable personalities. Frieza is a racist tyrannical dictator who rules much of the universe and has a very elegant way of speaking, so much so that he would be seen as polite if he didn’t look down upon anybody other then him, especially someone of a different race then him. Cell is a psychopathic self loathing perfectionist who will commit mass genocide, sweeping cities of their populations just to achieve his perfect form, only to be defeated by the only Z fighter who’s DNA he didn’t possess within his own. These villains are perfect (pun not intended) in many ways.
Chapter V: Goku Time’s portrayal of Gogeta
Here’s a little hot take: Goku Time’s portrayal of Gogeta is hot garbage. It is literal trash. It is the exact same as Vegito to the point where they should have just had him again. And the worst part is that there was a better version long before DBS Brody came out in 2018. Fusion Reborn, the first time Gogeta ever appeared, is 100% better. He’s not just a clone of Vegito. Personally however, I think that DBS’s portrayal of Gogeta is the best because it combines just a little of Vegito’s personality with Gogeta’s in FB.
Chapter VI: The awful OST
Unlike the amazing OST from Z’s Sub and Funimation dub, Goku Time’s Funimation dub is generic and boring. It’s very similar to the Ocean dub of Z’s soundtrack, which I, once again, would prefer not to be reminded of. This becomes 10% worse when you include Step into Grand Tour. It is a cringe rap song with random guitar riffs. It is the embodiment of the “How do you do, fellow kids?” Meme and has dated horribly as a result.
Chapter VII: A Dragon Ball without its creator
When people are asked why they don’t like Goku Time, this is one of the most brought up reasons, but it’s true. Akira Toriyama had close to zero involvement with Goku Time other than left over concept art from Z that Toei would use to create Super Saiyan 4. Oh yeah, speaking of which...
Chapter VIII: SSJ4
I don’t hate SSJ4, but I do have a few problems with the form. First, I don’t like how it isn’t Gold. Sure, this runs the risk of it looking to much like the previous 3 Super Saiyan forms, but its just plain odd otherwise. Second, the fur is a little over the top for me. I would be fine if they kept their shirts on. Third, its name is misleading as . What it is isn’t a continuation of Super Saiyan 3, but a smaller version of the Golden Great Ape form, kinda like the Berserk form Broly has where he has the power of the Ape but stays in his regular form, only in SSJ4 you don’t lose control over your mind. It falls into the washing concepts category, which will be next
Chapter IX: Wasted Concepts
A few of the concepts from Akira’s file cabinet Toei got its hands on were quite good, such as the Black Starred Dragon Balls. The fact that overuse of the Dragon Balls from the Z fighters came back to bite them in the form of powerful villains created from infamous wishes in the series is quite interesting. However, the execution was awful. Apart from Omega Shenron, the designs all look awful and the rest of the villains get killed off pretty quickly.
Chapter X: Confusing canon
Ever since Goku Time came out, a majority of fans, even today, agree that Goku Time isn’t canon, but people who do don’t seem to take into account that it counts the Z movies as canon. Yep. All of them. Most of the Z movies obviously don’t fit into the canon, so the fact that the non canon movies fit into a supposedly canon timeline doesn’t make too much sense.
Chapter XI: Vegeta, prince of ruined characters
This one is sort-of nitpicking, but Vegeta looks awful here. It’s not the mustache like many people critical of Goku Time would say (actually don’t hate the mustache) But its the hair and clothing. It’s hard to explain but he just looks bad. There’s a funny video about this called ‘Vegeta’s best moment in GT” which shows a picture of him from Z. But it’s not just his horrible look, he’s just constantly crapped on by all of the villains. They even reuse the whole Majin Vegeta narrative, like he didn’t learn the first time.
Chapter XII: Misuse of Uub
Uub had the potential to be a really great character, but instead they waste him completely. Even after he fuses with his past lives, he still easily gets his Kicked. The idea of an evil genocidal force of nature being reincarnated into a human is good, and I’m glad Super is building up for his return.
Part II: Why Super is better
Chapter I: Expanding the universe
Ever since Beerus showed up, we were shown that the Supreme Kais wee indeed NOT the absolute rulers of the universe, and that there were even stronger people out there with the power of gods. Then, when Champa showed up (This is revealed when Beerus appears in the manga) it is revealed that there are 11 different universes. Now to possibilities are plenty of who can fight who. This was briefly shown at the Tournament of Destroyers and shown again at a much larger size in the Tournament of Power. Now there’s all kinds of unique characters with all kinds of unique techniques and fighting styles to fight. For example, the Metalmen are originally thought to be mindless robots, but it turns out they are very intelligent living organisms that are nearly physically indestructible. We also learned that there are an entire new race of Saiyans and Namekians from Universe 6. The point is, Super feels much larger compared to Goku Time.
Chapter II: An actual supportive supporting cast
Unlike Goku Time, Super actually does things with its supporting cast. Krillin, Tien, Roshi, 18, 17, Piccolo, Gohan, they all do a lot, mainly in the Resurrection F saga and the Universe Survival saga. These characters are finally done the justice they were needing to get after Goku Time gave them all the middle finger. The only one missing is Yamcha. But don’t hold this against Super because he isn’t in Goku Time either.
Chapter III: A better villain
Many villains in DBS get a lot of slack, but there is one villain that is infinitely better than all of Goku Time’s villains. Zamasu. Now, many people have mixed feelings about him, but I think he is a great villain. He was supposed to be a great God, but corrupted himself when he saw the imperfections of the mortal world and became obsessed with his own Godhood and his Zero Mortal Plan. How he falls from greatness reminds me of a quote from The Dark Knight. The quote is: “He wanted to show that even somebody as good as [Dent] could fall”. If he was handled better, he had the potential to rival Frieza in terms of good villains.
I believe that both series are flawed in many ways, but I think that’s Super is much better than GT in my opinion. Super may be flawed, but GT is so flawed it’s hard to ignore.