DVD Review: Dragon Ball GT – Season 1

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It’s been a long time coming but Dragon Ball GT is finally here in the UK in its original Uncut format, but what exactly do we think of this DVD release by Manga Entertainment UK? Well find out in our DVD Review of Dragon Ball GT – Season 1.

Synopsis:

After enduring trials that would have crushed any other soul, Goku is now faced with the most important journey of his life. The Dragon Balls have been scattered to the ends of creation! The universe is dense with danger and the Saiyan hero must plunge head first into the peril, for if the seven magic relics of Shenron are not gathered within a year s time, Earth will meet with final catastrophe.

Alongside his friends, Pan and Trunks, Goku will struggle against the most formidable evils yet, be they savage beast with the power to crumble mountains, false gods intent on sacrificing those who believe, or cruel manipulators of science who seek to strip the good of all power. The countdown to oblivion has begun… And before the clock strikes eternal midnight, the most incredible menace to ever threaten existence will rise!

Our View:

Dragon Ball GT is the final instalment into the Dragon Ball franchise and while it continues the story left off by Dragon Ball Z newcomers to the franchise should easily be able to pick-it-up since new characters are introduced with old characters being side-lined for newer ones, such as Gohan and Goten being swapped out for Goku’s granddaughter Pan. Furthermore unlike the previous Dragon Ball instalment’s GT’s pace is much faster and flows more natural, which means those who didn’t like Z’s pacing should be able to enjoy this instalment of the Dragon Ball franchise.

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In this first instalment of Dragon Ball GT, which contains 34 uncut episodes across 5 DVD Discs, we find ourselves navigating through space in the search for the Black Star Dragon Balls while an old enemy from a forgotten culture arrives on earth to take its revenge on the Sayians. Of course these are just the highlights of Season 1, as many new opponents and comical faces are in-store for Goku and his friends – some more memorable than others, it’s an action packed ride with some laughs thrown in, especially between new characters Pan and Giru.

Dragon Ball GT’s story takes place around 10 years after the final episode of Dragon Ball Z and begins with Goku and Uub concluding their training at Dende’s lookout, however while everyone is distracted by this decisive fight an old enemy from the Dragon Ball saga, Emperor Pilaf, arrives in hopes of using the Black Star Dragon Balls for his own evil desires. By chance Goku stumbles upon Pilaf and an accidental wish is made which results in Goku being turned back into a child, but a greater problem arises when King Kai informs Goku that the Black Star Dragon Balls will destroy the planet they are used on within a year if they are not reunited – additionally the Black Star Balls scatter across the galaxy instead of just the planet they were used on.

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And so, after some comedy filled introductory episodes including one that sees our main protagonist kidnapped and being held for ransom, Goku, along with Trunks and Pan, set out on a voyage across the Galaxy in hopes of retrieving the Black Star Dragon Balls before the earth is destroyed.  Interestingly this voyage is only a prologue of things to come as an old forgotten race from Vegeta’s past arrives on earth and causes chaos for the entire planet, with Goku, Trunks and Pan being left to rise to the occasion – but who exactly can stop the Super Sayian charged tuffle Baby, well that’s where Super Sayian 4 Goku comes in.

Extras:

Unfortunately Season 1 of Dragon Ball GT does not include any extra features, not even a text less opening or ending video, while this is disappointing it could be due to how old the series is (something which is illustrated by the un-remastered footage used in the opening sequence). However while this Set doesn’t include any extra features it does include the marathon mode, a playback mode which cuts out the opening and ending sequences for each episode and with Vic Mignogna singing the english adaptation of Dan-Dan Kokoro some may wish to use this option.

Specs:

Media:  DVD 9 x5
Region: 2
Running Time:  2:42:10 (Disc 1), 2:42:10 (Disc 2), 2:42:10 (Disc 3), 2:42:11 (Disc 4), 2:19:01 (Disc 5)
Video: MPEG-2
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 448kbps (English), Dolby Digital 2.0 224Kbps (English & Japanese)
Subtitles: English (Yellow)
Resolution: 720 x 576 (576i)
Aspect Ratio: 4:3
Frame Rate: 25 fps

Overall:

Dragon Ball GT continues the story of the Dragon Ball saga and takes it to new places, such as the introduction to Super Sayian 4 and the technology advancements of the Tuffles civilization– something which has only been tip-toed on through the Dragon Ball Z Storyline. It’s not just the story that gets an overhaul either, as the the animation is slightly different (with Super Sayian forms of Gohan, Goten and Vegeta all looking the same) but there is more comedy featured within the series – especially the constant banter between Giru and Pan.

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In regards to this DVD release the episodic content is exactly the same as the DVD release in America several years ago – this means that we get a newer re-mastered picture quality (presented in 4:3 aspect ratio) and three different audio languages. The first English audio track is presented in 5.1 Surround Sound with the original Japanese background music while the second English audio track is presented in 2.0 Stereo sound and features the audio that was originally used in the initial DVD Release. The third and final audio track is for the original 2.0 Japanese Stereo which quite frankly hasn’t aged well and sounds terrible.

With these different audio options being available it means that this release can offer multiple viewing experiences (and replay value) as both English audio tracks provide a different, but unique, experience to the viewer. The 5.1 Surround option provides an experience true to the original Japanese audio while the 2.0 English audio track provides a more “modernised” approach to the soundtrack. Of course those who already own the Dragon Ball Z sets will be fimilar with these options, as it is exactly the same – even the menu layout is exactly the same as the Dragon Ball Z sets except they are green and with Dragon Ball GT logos. Its simple, clean and effective – the only downfall is no additional extras, such as text less videos.

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Dragon Ball GT contains everything you enjoyed about Dragon Ball Z but remixes it with story and comedy traits as seen in the original Dragon Ball saga but mixes it with the instense battles seen within the later episodes of the Dragon Ball Z saga. In this first season instalment to the GT storyline we are introduced to the new characters with a fast paced moving story that quickly progresses from finding the Dragon Balls into defending the earth from another overcharged alien.  If you are a fan of Dragon Ball franchise then obviously watching Drgaon Ball GT is a no brainer, as you’ll no doubtedly enjoy it – however if you are new to the franchise Dragon Ball GT may be worth checking out as it is a lot shorter and easier to enjoy compared to the longer, slower paced series of Dragon Ball Z.

Score: review-stars-3

Dragon Ball GT – Season 1 will be available on DVD from the 20th January 2014.

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About Scott Emsen
Scott is the Founder and Executive Editor of AnimeBlurayUK but in the past he has worked at ZOMGPlay, Rice Digital and Funstock and was once a Community Moderator for the Nokia N-Gage forums. Based in the UK, he loves anything related to Games & Anime and in In his spare time you'll mostly find him playing on one of his many gaming consoles; namely the PS Vita, PS4 or Xbox One.

One Response to DVD Review: Dragon Ball GT – Season 1

  1. Pingback: Dragon Ball GT | Anime Gauge

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