Dragon Ball Z, quite possibly the most popular anime in the world since its debut in 1989, will finally be seeing its first sequel in 18 years. Dragon Ball Super is set to premiere this July, as previously reported in the Inquisitr.
Although a sequel was technically published in 1996 — Dragon Ball GT — it was produced almost entirely without original author Akira Toriyama’s input, and according to some sources, against his wishes. While no confirmation has been made, it is unlikely that GT will feature as Dragon Ball canon with the coming of Super, particularly with the series having been announced as a direct sequel to Dragon Ball Z.
As reported in Rolling Stone, Akira Toriyama will be returning as writer for Dragon Ball Super, as will the original voice actor of Goku, Gohan, Goten, and Masako Nozawa. She (a surprising number of the male protagonists were voiced by women) is now 78-years-old and, as per Design Trend, seemingly extremely enthusiastic to be working on Dragon Ball again.
“We’ve always used the word ‘chō’ (Super) with Dragon Ball in commercials, games and the like, but the fact that the series titled Dragon Ball Super is beginning is the best thing ever. […] I hope that this series will last a long time and have the same impact around the world as its predecessor.”
Dragon Ball Super will start several years after the events of the recently-released Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F, confirming at least that the new movie will be a direct part of canon (the canon of some of the other movies in the series — 19 in all — can be considered iffy at best.) This likely puts Super as starting roughly five to 10 years after the end of Dragon Ball Z.
From its origins as the sequel to Toriyama’s immensely-popular Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z has expanded to almost every other medium imaginable, spawning movies, music, toys, countless video games, even a collectible trading card game, and now, trading on its success in American markets, it will become one of the first anime series in history to be continued after such a long hiatus; anime fans are well-familiar with how rarely a series is resumed after ending/cancellation, regardless of popularity.
Dragon Ball Super will air on Fuji TV in Japan at 9 a.m. on Sundays. It is not yet certain when an English version will air, or where, but English-speaking fans of Dragon Ball Z can likely rest assured that the show will be coming their way soon after.
[Image courtesy DragonBallZ.com]