For decades, audiences have followed the adventures of Goku and his friends both on the page and on screen. dragonball is one of the most popular manga of all time, so it’s no surprise that the anime has strived to be a faithful adaptation. However, like any adaptation, the Dragon Ball anime made its fair share of changes from the original source material.
Fans frequently scoff at any changes made by an adaptation from the source material, whether it’s removing scenes or dialogue or adding filler content to stretch the story to fit it perfectly. in precise 25 minute increments. Nevertheless, some changes are necessary or even for the better, such as the Dragon Ballthe anime was better off without those moments.
ten Frost eliminates Krillin too early in the manga
Krillin may be the first member of Universe 7 to be knocked out of the Tournament of Power in the anime, but he still has a few moments to shine. He saves his wife, Android 18, from early elimination, and they team up to take down several Universe 4 enemies.
While Krillin is eliminated by Frost in both versions, in the manga his elimination comes at the very start of the Tournament, before he has a chance to throw a single punch. Part of what made the Universe Survival arc great in anime is that it gave characters who had been sidelined for much of the anime their individual moments to shine. Something the manga failed to do.
9 Tien’s loss to Frost is dishonorable
Tien Shinhan is a fighter who has a reputation for swinging. His Tri-Beam Last Breath against Nappa, his brave stance to delay Semi-Perfect Cell, and in the anime bringing down Universe 2’s sniper Harmira with him were all instances of Tien nobly taking on enemies more strong with all he had until the bitter end.
In the manga, like Krillin, Tien is finished at the very start of Frost’s Tournament of Power. However, the character’s dedicated fans likely preferred the anime’s depiction, in which he never fights Frost, and at least gives him a chance to show off his most beloved techniques.
8 Guldo’s death was rightly toned down
Vegeta beheading Guldo represents one of the franchise’s most brutal moments. However, it may come as a surprise to fans who’ve only seen the moment on TV that the adaptation is actually moderately toned down from its more detailed original portrayal. Most notably, Guldo’s severed spinal cord is visible as his head is ripped from his body.
It’s not uncommon for manga to be bloodier than their anime adaptations. While fans might complain, a few who started watching as kids would likely have turned off their parents’ TV or computer if that moment had been as graphic as it was in the manga.
seven Trunks, Goten and Maron on Monster Island are unnecessary filler
Trunks, Goten, and Maron’s time as Android 17-filling rangers on Monster Island could have easily been turned into a few filler episodes or a subplot during the Tournament of Power. Luckily, the show just leaves them on the island for the Tournament of Power, but the manga shows their encounter with Cell Juniors and hints at their victory over a group of poachers.
Although the experience of the three could produce some funny twists, the universe survival saga is already the longest arc of Dragon Ball Super. Additional anime filler content would have slowed down the arc further, distracting audiences from the non-stop action.
6 Not all spinoffs match the franchise’s current tone
Spin off Dragon Ball Less, The Bardock Episodeand Jaco the patrolman influenced movies, were adapted into specials, and incorporated characters into the main series with mixed responses. However, one spin-off that was not adapted into the anime is Neko Majin.
Many Dragon Ball characters make appearances in Neko Majin. Adapting any of these interactions into the anime or specials would have been an odd fit with the more serious tone the franchise has become. Super embraced some lighter aspects of the original series, but more comic relief characters would be more of an intrusion than an addition to the main storyline.
5 10% of Vegeta’s power underestimates Hit’s threat
Universe 6 Arc was the first to introduce characters from other universes. The most interesting addition is the 1000-year-old assassin Hit, who quickly shows his skill with a victory over Vegeta. Unfortunately, it was revealed by Whis in the manga that due to the consequences of Super Saiyan Blue, Vegeta could only use 10% of his power in this confrontation.
The anime thankfully leaves out this revelation as it diminishes one of the best beatings in the entire series, removes the tension from Hit’s later fight with Goku, and once again downplays the skill’s importance in favor of exposure on power levels and percentages. Something that has been a persistent target of criticism from fans.
4 The execution of a civilian by doctor Gero goes too far
The arrival of Doctor Gero and Android 20 is a particularly haunting and violent moment in the anime. Dragon Ball manga doesn’t shy away from blood, and Gero’s execution of a civilian includes perhaps the most gruesome panel in the entire series when he literally crushes a man’s head.
As with Guldo’s death, fitting this scene from the manga perfectly would have likely raised the level of parental warning and possibly prevented some forever fans from being allowed to watch in the first place.
3 Yamcha’s surrender shows a lack of pride
For decades, Yamcha has been the butt of fan jokes. A fight in the manga that contributes to this image occurs against Fortuneteller Baba’s third fighter, Bandages the Mummy. In this one-sided case, Yamcha surrenders after being held over a pool of deadly acid.
In the anime, by contrast, Yamcha refuses to give up, and while he may take a much more vicious beating for his troubles, he is able to leave the battlefield with his honor intact. Most fans revel in Yamcha’s constant humiliation, but for his proud followers, even a small show of pride can be a significant moment for the character.
2 Gohan’s last fight against Buu is too one-sided
Gohan is one of the most popular characters in the entire franchise. With the Buu Saga initially envisioned as the end of the series, more so than most characters, Gohan deserved a true final showcase of his power.
However, in the manga, Gohan’s final battle against Super Buu is a crushing defeat, where he fails to land a single blow on his opponent. He still suffers a loss in the anime, but puts on a more respectable performance worthy of a fan favorite.
1 Some Fourth Wall Breakups Just Can’t Be Fitted Cleanly
dragonball has its fair share of characters breaking the fourth wall. While these instances are mostly limited to the manga, there are a few in the anime as well. And, as Vegeta painfully learned, never fight an ’80s gag manga character.
Some breaks are for print media only and cannot be adapted for the screen. Characters that cut lines between panels and move back pages don’t really have adequate counterparts when animated. Limiting fourth wall breaks allowed the anime to stay focused on the story.
Next: Dragon Ball: 10 Things About The Series Manga Readers Know Anime-Only Fans Don’t