Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Dragonball Z Movie 2: The World's Strongest

While Dead Zone takes place before the show starts, this one takes place at about the end of the Saiyan Saga. Since that's impossible continuity-wise, I figure this takes place in the alternate universe that most of the DBZ movies seem to take place in.

We begin with Piccolo smashing glaciers for training purposes. Damn it! Piccolo was the cause of rising sea levels all along! WE WERE AFTER THE OIL COMPANIES FOR NOTHING!

Meanwhile, Oolong makes his movie debut.

 "Oh Yeahhhh."

What? Seriously? Is there anything you aren't into, Richie?

Anyway, Oolong is thrilled because...

...someone has gathered most of the Dragonballs in one place, and Oolong thinks he can get there and make a wish before they do. Er...shouldn't this gathering be cause for alarm, given what happened with Garlic Jr. one movie ago?

Oolong cosplays as Ice Man as he and Gohan trek to the frigid north pole to find the assembled 'balls. Wait, if Gohan's there, why doesn't Gohan just fly them up this cliff?

Oolong daydreams about what he'll use his wish for: Underwear. I mean, he does that in the original Dragonball series, but why would he do it again? WHY WHY WH

Here's one of the villains of this movie, some nefarious guy. He's the one who has assembled the 'balls that our heroes are slowly climbing towards.

Whoever he is, he's about to be IMMORTAL and nobody is doing anything about it!

Wait, good news, he only wishes for the resurrection of his master, Dr. Wheelo. So...is Dr. Wheelo a palette-swap of Dr. Gero?

Title screen flashes while dramatic music plays. Not dramatic enough though. Here's the REAL theme that should be playing in this movie. The World's Strongest, indeed.

A bunch of Saibaman palette-swaps attack Piccolo while he's training, and he easily dispatches all of them.

It just occurred to me. The first DBZ RPG for the Famicom had Dead Zone areas/bosses to pad out the mid-game between Raditz and the other two Saiyans. I don't know why they didn't also add this movie while they were at it. It could be a "postgame dungeon" for after you've defeated Vegeta, or just another area before you fight Nappa if they didn't want to upstage the Saiyans. It'd mean fewer dull training areas to kill time.

The movie already has palette-swap Saibamen as enemies, so it's halfway there as a dungeon in that game. 

Piccolo unleashes his not-often-seen MOUTH BLAST to fry a Not-Saibaman. Didn't this exact scene happen with a Saibaman during the regular show? ...Yes. Yes he did.

Meanwhile, Gohan and Oolong end up in an ice cave due to the glacial destruction caused by Piccolo's fight. Also, the dragonballs have triggered and gone their separate ways now. You'd think any of these things would be causes of alarm for these two...


Elsewhere, Gohan is out of the house, and his parents have a golden opportunity to not have sex.

Gohan returns and immediately gets saddled with more studying than any third-grader should ever have to deal with. Time for a Weirdass Gohan Music Video!





Okay abrupt tonal shift as we see Gohan remembering how Piccolo sacrificed himself in the fight against Nappa.

Wait a minute... if he's remembering this, then... this isn't an alternate universe from the show?

But...how is this happening? And how is Piccolo alive if we're remembering him dying? He didn't get revived until late in the next saga!


(Note: These movies may transpire in a weird canon vacuum, but this one in particular is still a very good movie. It's best to not worry about the nonsensical timeline.)

Chi Chi stirs Gohan from his slumber. From the looks of things, he just realized that none of this makes any sense too.

Meanwhile at Kame House, Oolong burns dinner because he can't cook. Now they're going to have to roast Oolong or they'll go hungry.

The Not-Saibamen arrive, demanding to see Master Roshi. First of all, I'm surprised they knocked on the door. Second of all... Roshi refuses to come to the door, yelling down that he's "very busy, hee hee". I'm not making this up.

Turtle effectively delays them by merely talking in slow-mo while Roshi gets his pants on and shows up.

What follows is Roshi doing some whooping! He knocks out these guys like it's nothing. Well, I guess they're not Saibamen-strength, cause those things were supposed to be Raditz-level and there's no way Roshi is near that. Then again, who knows how strong they really were, the dub was all over the place with power level stuff.

Long story short, the Not-Saibamen get ahold of Bulma and hold her hostage to get Roshi to surrender. Both of them are taken captive to the evil northern lair of Dr. Wheelo.

Oolong informs Gokou of all of this, but Gokou couldn't care less. He outright says "I'm not worried!" when asked.


Finally, he decides to take action and fly up to the north pole to see what these villains are up to. TO THE NIMBUS!

Gohan tries to sneak away, but Chi Chi isn't having any of it.

  In Dr. Wheelo's secret base, the kidnapped Master Roshi must contend with Wheelo's goon squad. There are three of them, just like in the previous movie. Yeah, these movies don't exactly reinvent the... wheel.

Roshi is unimpressed, and lets them know that he can still go.

He holds off the goon squad with ease. Wow, Roshi is a force in this one.

Finally he launches a kamehameha, only to have it bounce off the big yellow marshmallow goon. What follows is the other two administering a beatdown on our favorite monk.

"You should learn to respect your elders!" sputters Roshi. Reference is constantly made to how old he is, because Japan.

The worst part? Roshi is 30.

Fast forward a bit past some cloud-riding and shivering, and Gokou finally arrives to fight the goons. This marshmallow guy has super-high defense, so Gokou's strikes do little damage.

Here's a shot from the original U.S. intro. Most of the shots in that intro are from the first three movies.

Gokou goes into Kaioh-Ken mode to break out of an ice block! Tell me I'm the only one who is hearing "Rock the Dragon" in their head right now.

Kaioh Ken...TIMES THREE. This means business!

Gokou proceeds to mop the floor with Wheelo's goons in mere seconds.

Here's the third and somewhat underutilized goon. I don't think I could pick him out of a lineup with the three goons from the first movie. Doesn't really matter because they're all toast.

Meanwhile, Kuririn and Gohan are freezing. This inhospitable secret lair wasn't made for regular folks. It was made for...


We get a cool shot where our heroes appear on a large video screen behind them. Apparently Dr Wheelo is filming them...and he didn't even ask first! What is this, a fraternity?

This weirdo shows up again. He isn't Dr. Wheelo, he's Dr. Wheelo's main henchman.

The actual Dr. Wheelo is a giant brain in a glass case, which - as Bulma helpfully explains here - is 70 years old.

Yeah, Bulma is still around. She's chained up, sorta the Leia to the giant brain's Jabba.

The mad scientist guy goes on about how he preserved Wheelo's brain all this time... while seeking a time and place where their pursuits of science could progress unfettered by the laws of man! Without morality or ethics, think of the TRUE progress that we could achieve! Neither God nor King shall restrain us any longer in our pursuit of perfection! Long have we sought a utopia without the shackles brought on by the small minds of government! A place where the weak and simple would not take from the powerful, the makers, where we the scientists could usher in the GLORIFICATION of our mastery of the art! To weave such a tapestry of science that it would become indistinguishable from magic! What is a few lives lost in the pursuit of such a noble ascent to species primacy?

...alright, he didn't really say any of that, but it's more or less what he probably meant.

 And on that note, here's Mother Brain Dr. Wheelo's brain. It finally shows itself, like Vince Russo in Spring 2000.

Piccolo returns, but he seems tense.

He backhands his buddy Gohan! What gives, Piccolo?

Nothing actually happens to Kuririn, but he immediately ducks and covers just in case.

Piccolo proceeds to fight Gokou mano-a-mano. Looks like Piccolo's eyes are all bloodshot, which might mean #Pot2Blame.

The brainwashed Piccolo again tries to punch Gohan, but Gokou won't allow it.


"It isn't like Gokou's doing any of that!"


The evil scientist turns out to be a robot, as he sprouts an arm cannon and opens fire on Kuririn.


Ultimately, that weird crown gets broken off of Piccolo's head and he regains his freedom from Dr. Wheelo's mind control.

"Is it too late now to say sorrrrrrrrry?" asks Piccolo while reggaeton plays.

Meanwhile, the scientist falls into a pit...and gets electrocuted too. It's the Emperor Palpatine Double-Whammy.

Quick shot of the scientist's real form as he gets electrocuted by Dr. Wheelo and "dies". Dr. Wheelo is putting up with no more of his shit!

Speaking of Wheelo, his brain now roars up out of the ground in a massive battle body. Super Metroid?

Earth's mightiest warriors are ready! Too bad Tien and Yamcha aren't here, this movie would have been one of their few chances to really shine.

Gohan does get to shine, at least, with a bit more action here than he got in the first movie.

...he gets knocked out quickly regardless. Piccolo is on hand to catch him when Gokou isn't.

See that, Rick Santorum? Gay couples can raise a kid just fine!

Gokou goes into Kaioh-Ken as he faces off with Dr. Wheelo. I like Kaioh-Ken. It's like a proto-SSJ that is actually cooler in a lot of ways, as a temporary buff.

Good scene here with Wheelo looming up over a poised Gokou. This fight has some of the same beats as Gokou Vs. Vegeta.

Beam tug-of-war! Gokou wins this one fairly quickly.

Yeah, definitely echoing the Vegeta fight here, as the Kaioh Ken x3 left Gokou's clothes shredded. The battle isn't over yet, though...

The similarities continue, as Gokou tries to summon a Spirit Bomb to finish off Wheelo.

For this, he must draw on he power of the Earth and the plants and majestic deer and shit.

For one brief, shining moment, all of the people of Earth are united in a harmonious balance, as our hero gets a small donation of energy from everyone. It's like the Bernie Sanders campaign!

War and strife cease entirely as people of all colors and religions come together as one: Earthlings.

...what the fuck is that raccoon guy in the foreground?

All of that was for NOTHING, as Wheelo proceeds to demolish our hero with ferocious beams from orbit before he can launch the Spirit Bomb.

War and chaos immediately resume across the Earth! The hipster in the top left is cooking and eating the raccoon! Buff Randy Marsh is bombing the guy in the turban! Damn it, Wheelo!

Gohan body-crashes into the brain dome, significantly cracking it and stalling the big bad temporarily.

Piccolo also goes up to the glass for a point-blank mouth-beam in the single most-unsettling DBZ picture of all time. Get him, Kuririn! Complete the combo!

Kuririn completes the combo by getting slapped out of the air!

Wheelo's dome may be cracked, but now he's angry. He wants to subdue Gokou and put his own brain into Gokou's body, thus becoming The World's Strongest and gaining the power to rule everyone.

Seriously though, how the hell is he going to fit his giant brain into Gokou's body? Why is his brain so big in the first place?

With some time to rest, Gokou is able to form the Spirit Bomb, and this time he has enough room to throw it.

Dr. Wheelo explodes into nothingness in a brilliant flash of energy. Unlike Vegeta, he won't get up from this.

 Somewhere during all of this, it's a magical moment as Gohan gets his first boner.

Maybe now Bulma will put on some damn pants!

Our heroes celebrate. Welcome to the team, young Gohan.

 Everyone notices that Roshi is there after Roshi mentions his flattery at Wheelo wanting to control him (before Wheelo realized there were stronger beings than Roshi), so Bulma shuts down his brief moment of happiness and laughs about what an old perv he is.

"...............I'm not old."

::sound of a musket loading and cocking::

 ::a musket round rings out across the landscape, followed by the yelling of our heroes::

::Roshi curses about missing as he cleans the musket and slowly reloads it::

::another musket round rings out as the yelling gets further and further away::

::the cleaning/reloading begins again, accompanied by Roshi cursing more as the yelling of our heroes gets too far away to hear::


  1. That was pretty funny even as someone who doesn't watch Dragonball Z! Disclaimer is sad but true.

  2. Gokou vs Mark Henry, book it!

    Wow, Oolong actually wasn't in the first movie. That's unusual for him.

    Man, Gohan's gotta read all those books and he's like six.

    These movies pretty much ARE the wheel.

    You made an old joke too! ...I hear he's somewhere around 365 at the end of Z.

    I hear that while under the influence of the slave crown Piccolo fried fifty Magitek armored solders in three minutes.

    Buff Randy Marsh, LOL... he wouldn't do that though, he's PC now.

    Gokou with a brain? That's ridiculous.

  3. You described this one very excitingly, hitting a lot of great beats. Nice work.