Anime Club: Dragon Ball

Available on DVD at Prosper Community Library!

Streaming: Crunchyroll, Hulu, Amazon (not Prime, but can purchase or rent)


The Dragon Ball franchise is the oldest franchise that we have watched in Anime Club.  The Dragon Ball manga was first published in 1984 and the original anime aired in 1986!  It has gone through many continuations, so everything that is shared in today’s blog will be relevant whether you watch the original Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Super, or Dragon Ball Z.  The Prosper Community Library has Dragon Ball Super: Broly on DVD!


You could watch one or two minutes of ANY episode of Dragon Ball and immediately guess its genre: battle shonen.  As we’ve already established, some trademarks of the shonen genre are martial arts and fighting, sports (especially in teams), science fiction and robots (like Gundam), horror, and mythical creatures.  Shonen protagonists usually work really hard to overcome personal obstacles and become the best version of themselves.


Dragon Ball incorporates so much martial arts and epic battles that it coined the sub-genre battle shonen.  Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama is a huge fan of martial arts movies.  When Toriyama created Dragon Ball, he combined the kung fu style of 1970s Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan movies with the epic quest format from a classic Chinese novel (Journey to the West) written in the 16th century.


Trailer for Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon (1973):


Did you notice the punny names of some of the Dragon Ball characters?  That is another signature of Toriyama: he loves to name his characters after the Japanese or English names for foods, clothing, musical instruments, etcetera!  The puns he uses are based on the characters’ home planet.  For example, all Saiyans are named after vegetables.  Vegeta’s name is a big hint for this naming convention.


Dragon Ball Saiyan Name Puns:


If you like this anime, borrow these from PCL:


  • Bleach – YA GN KUB
  • The Boy and the Beast – YA GN HOS
  • Demon Slayer – YA GN GOT
  • My Hero Academia – YA GN HOR
  • Naruto – YA GN KIS


Anime DVD:

  • Bleach – DVD BLE
  • Fairy Tail – DVD FAI
  • Kiki’s Delivery Service – J DVD KIK
  • My Bride is a Mermaid – DVD MY
  • Naruto – DVD NAR
  • One Piece – DVD ONE
  • Pokemon Movie Collection – J DVD POK
  • Spirited Away – J DVD SPI
  • Yowamushi Pedal – DVD YOW
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! – J DVD YU


Careers in Anime: 

“How can I turn my love of anime, manga, Japanese culture into a job?”


Become a Sushi Chef!


Borrow these from Prosper Community Library to practice culinary skills!

  • Eat Fresh Food by Rozanne Gold – YA 641.5 GOL
  • Kawaii Sweet World by Rachel Fong – 641.86 FON
  • The Manga Cookbook 3 by Yoko Ishihara – YA 641.5 ISH
  • The Pokemon Cookbook by Maki Kudo – J 641.5 KUD

    What did you think about Dragon Ball’s outrageous battle scenes? Don’t miss our next anime club program – we’ll be switching gears to take a peaceful trip to the countryside to strike out on our own.


Katie Deeds
Youth Services Librarian – Prosper Community Library