This is the final step in the beginning of the worldwide Dragon Ball resurgence. The dub of not only Dragon Ball Super, but the very long awaited, rumoured to have been ready for a long time dub of the Dragon Ball Kai Buu Saga are officially coming to US television every Saturday beginning January 7th.
Taken straight from the Funimation press release:
“Dragon Ball fans everywhere just received the biggest gift of the holiday season. Toei Animation Inc., Funimation© Entertainment and Adult Swim are pleased to announce their partnership to bring “Dragon Ball Super” to TV audiences starting next January. “Dragon Ball Super” is the first new storyline in more than 18 years from original creator Akira Toriyama and the Dragon Ball franchise, which was first introduced to the U.S. more than 20 years ago. Adult Swim will begin airing the U.S. English dub of “Dragon Ball Super” Season 1 during the Toonami block starting on January 7, 2017 at 8 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. ET. Season 1, which totals 26 episodes, encompasses the Battle of Gods and Resurrection ‘F’ story arcs. New episodes of “Dragon Ball Super” will air each Saturday.”
A new preview of a dubbed scene featuring Beerus and Whis was also released today. You can watch it above. Those that were paying attention may have noticed that there are two airing times. This could be to accommodate for both a censored version (e.g. using Hercule instead of Mr. Satan, perhaps less blood) and an uncensored version to run on Television. However it is important to say the press release does not make this clear and that the dual time slots may only exist for the premiere episode. Check out our recent article on the Dragon Ball Super Dub for a full cast list for the Battle of Gods saga. Announcements for releases in other countries have not yet been made. EDIT: It has been confirmed by Demarco (the person who runs Toonami) that both slots will be unedited as there is no need to edit the content for the Adult Swim audience. He also confirmed both time slots will stay for the duration of the first seasons run.
While that is huge news, perhaps even bigger news is that Dragon Ball Kai: The Final Chapters finally has a release date. This comes after years of rumours that the finished product has just been sitting in storage waiting for the right time to release. Dragon Ball Kai: The Final Chapters will begin airing at midnight on January 7, the same day as Dragon Ball Super. The ‘improved re-edit’ of the series began airing in Japan in 2009, so it has been quite a wait to get these final episodes for an International release. The Final Chapters will run for 69 episodes, 37 episodes less than the original Buu Saga that aired in Dragon Ball Z if you count from the very end of the Cell Saga. I expect the Other World tournament arc to be cut alongside a lot of the Great Saiyaman material.
A full cast list has also been released via the official website, with no major changes from the original Z run of the Buu Saga, apart from roles that were recast for Dragon Ball Kai. For example. this means Android 18 will be voiced by Colleen Clinkenbeard here in Kai, despite taking back the role in the recent films and the Super dub. Notably Laura Bailey reprises the role of Kid Trunks in Dragon Ball Kai but is not returning in Dragon Ball Super. Her replacement in Dragon Ball Super, Alexis Tipton, is taking on the minor role of Erasa in Dragon Ball Kai.
Believe it or not there is still more Dragon Ball related news. With the recent release of volume 2 of the Dragon Ball Super manga in Japan, a new interview from the manga artist Toyotaro gives us a good idea of how much involvement series creator Akira Toriyama has with the story of the new series. Toyotaro will draw a rough draft based on the basic text outline he is given. He will then send that drawing to his editor who then gets Toriyama to check it. Toriyama will sometimes send back edited pictures he draws himself.
For example in the image above, the top left image is Toyotaro’s first draft. Notice the planet is smaller but roughly the size of the other Super Dragon Ball’s. Toriyama then corrects the image, making the planet larger and adding some dialogue. Toyotaro then draws and shades the image nicely to give us the final product on the bottom right.
Toyotaro also spoils that the end of the Trunks arc will be different in the manga version and lets us know that new characters to Super such as Beerus and Whis are the hardest to draw because there is a lack of reference art. Big credit to fan website Kanzenshuu for the scan of the image and translations.
Lastly, Europe and Australia finally have an official release date for Dragon Ball Fusions instead of just February 2017. The 17th of February is the day those outside of America and Japan will finally be able to fuse their favourite warriors on the Nintendo 3DS. For more information on that game check out all of our detailed past coverage.