When you think about Dragon Ball, the first things that pop into your mind are those long and cataclysmic battles, the power-ups, the energy blasts, as well as Krillin’s infinite losing streaks. But Dragon Ball, whether we speak about the first series, Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball GT, or Dragon Ball Super, is way more than just that. Dragon Ball also provides some unfathomably important and beautiful life lessons that anybody can take into account.
The first Dragon Ball series follows the adventures of Goku, who was just a little boy at that time. He was unusually strong for a child, and he always wanted to protect the innocent. Dragon Ball Z, on the other hand, the series that followed the first one, was about Goku and his allies fighting for world peace against much more powerful foes, such as Frieza, Cell, or Majin Buu. Dragon Ball Z is also the show in which Goku finds out about his true origins as a Saiyan from planet Vegeta.
As for Dragon Ball GT and Super, both of those shows have raised the stakes a lot more than Dragon Ball Z, as Goku & Co. became a lot stronger, as well as their new enemies. But let’s dive a bit into the moral and life lessons of Dragon Ball, shall we?
Anybody can become a better person
Many of the Dragon Ball villains have become good at some point, as the original creator and writer of Dragon Ball, Akira Toriyama, wants to tell us that anybody can change regardless of how bad that person may be. While we can’t help to say that it very rarely happens in real life, we have to admit that it’s a nice concept at least in theory.
Let’s take Vegeta, for instance. When he was first introduced in early Dragon Ball Z, he was bad to the bone. He is the Prince of all Saiyans, and that sole idea is part of his arrogant attitude. However, Vegeta was more than just arrogant when he first arrived in the show – he was a ruthless killer who didn’t hesitate to kill even his own comrade and henchman, Nappa, simply because the latter lost against Goku. Meanwhile, Vegeta became one of the heroes in Dragon Ball, although he may not like to admit it. The Saiyan Prince fought for the salvation of the Earth and even of the entire Universe. He even married Bulma and became a loving father with his son Trunks and his daughter Bulla. Again, he might not like to admit his love for his children, either.
What changed Vegeta? That’s a good question. Probably his love for his family. It became clear that Veggie was one of the good guys in the Majin Buu Saga from Dragon Ball Z when he sacrificed himself for the entire world in his attempt to destroy Majin Buu.
Dragon Ball often focuses on the idea of working hard through training in order to become stronger. In other words, most of the franchise clearly tells us that in order to achieve more in life, you need to work hard. For instance, Goku had to climb the Korin Tower to become strong enough to defeat Mercenary Tao in the first Dragon Ball series. Our hero also had to drink the Ultra Divine Water, which might have killed him, to be able to go toe to toe with King Piccolo. Much later in Dragon Ball Z, Goku and his son Gohan had to train in the Hyperbolic Time Chamber to become strong enough to pose a chance against Cell, the nefarious biological android created by Dr. Gero. It was clearly stated that Vegeta had to struggle and train much more than expected to achieve the Super Saiyan transformation. The examples could continue forever. Everybody trains in Dragon Ball.
Friendship and trust are important concepts in Dragon Ball, as the franchise presents how Goku is able to make strong bonds with many people, including some of his enemies who develop admiration for his character. It was the case with important characters such as Piccolo, Vegeta, and Tien. The franchise clearly emphasizes that friendship and trust are important concept and that they can even turn out to be more important than raw power when it comes to winning a battle. For instance, we can see that idea in action a lot during the Tournament of Power arc from Dragon Ball Super, as the whole saga focused on a huge battle royale between 11 universes. When Jiren got defeated, a fighter who didn’t believe in friendship nor in trust, said to himself “so this is the power of Universe 7, trust!”
The battle between Good and Evil
Dragon Ball is all about a permanent battle between Good and Evil. Goku, Vegeta, Piccolo, Gohan, Android 18, and Co. are on the side of Good, although some of them were evil at some point. On the other hand, the villains are always there to give the good guys a hard time and try to destroy the world. You can’t possibly know about Dragon Ball without having heard about villains such as Frieza, Cell, Majin Buu, Tao Pai Pai, Baby, Zamasu, and more.
It should be clear to anyone that Dragon Ball is more than just a martial arts anime. It’s actually a long journey through life lessons and the fight against evil, which is why the franchise gathered so many fans across the world.