Today, let's take a brief look at one of the most iconic anime characters of all time: #SonGoku
of DragonBall Z fame. Dragon Ball started out as a manga written by a man named #AkiraToriyama
, which was published in the magazine #ShonenJump
from 1984 to 1995. It was made into an anime by #ToeiAnimation
in two halves; the first half from 1986 to 1989, and the second half from 1989 to 1996, adding up to over 400 episodes in total! 😮 A bit of trivia about the title: #DragonBall
is the actual title of the manga from start to finish, and thus it is the title of the first half of the anime adaptation, which covered Goku's early adventures, training, and tournament career up to his becoming an adult and marrying Chi-Chi. #DragonBallZ
, meanwhile, is the anime adaptation of the second half of the manga, covering the adventures of adult Goku and his friends as they defend the Earth and the universe from various evil forces 👊🏼
Dragon Ball started out as an homage to one of the most enduring and influential literary works in East Asian cultures: #JourneyToTheWest
(2nd pic). One of China's Great Classical Novels, it tells the story of a Buddhist monk sent to India to obtain sacred Buddhist texts and study Buddhism at its source. One of the monk's travelling companions is the monkey warrior #SunWukong
, who is undoubtedly the breakout character of the entire novel! 🐵 Wukong (3rd pic) is noted for his immense physical strength, boisterous and fight-happy attitude, magical staff that can change lengths, ability to ride on clouds, and of course, monkey features. Additionally, the Japanese reading of Sun Wukong's name is - you guessed it - Son Goku! The Goku we all know and love is actually based directly on Sun Wukong (compare the 3rd and 4th pics), and even beyond that, the series started as an homage to Journey to the West, with Bulma as the monk and the eponymous Dragon Balls representing the Buddhist texts. Of course, it puts a science fantasy spin on the whole thing!
What do you think of Goku? Do you like him as a character? Do you prefer the goofier, more comedic Dragon Ball, or the more epic and action-oriented Dragon Ball Z? 🙂 Let us know your thoughts!