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About Dragon Ball Z

Dragon Ball Z is the long-running sequel to the anime Dragon Ball. The series is a close adaptation of the second (and far longer) portion of the Dragon Ball manga written and drawn by Akira Toriyama (in the United States, the manga's second portion is also titled Dragon Ball Z to prevent confusion). The 'Z' was originally added to the title by Toriyama to signify it as being the ending portion of the Dragon Ball series. The 'Z' does not literally stand for anything. The anime features characters, situations, and backstories not present in the original manga. Those portions are considered non-canon by some fans, being dubbed filler.

The series follows the adventures of the adult Son Goku who, along with his companions, defend the Earth and many other planets against various villains. While the original Dragon Ball anime followed Goku through childhood into adulthood, Dragon Ball Z is a continuation of his adulthood life, but at the same time parallels the maturation of his son, Gohan. The separation between the series is also significant as the latter series takes on a more dramatic and serious tone.

The anime first premiered in Japan on April 18, 1989 (on Fuji TV) at 7:00 p.m. and ended on January 31, 1996. It was also later broadcast across Japan by the anime television network, Animax. In the U.S., the series ran between 1996 and 2003, though not always on the same networks or with continuity of dubbing. It aired in the UK, albeit with the same dubbing problem, on Cartoon Network, premiering on March 6, 2000 and running until 2002, with the final few episodes being shown on CNX starting from October 14, 2002 and finishing on February 28, 2003. The channel then relaunched as Toonami, on which it was repeated daily.

After Dragon Ball Z, the story of Son Goku and friends continues in the anime-only series Dragon Ball GT. This series is not based on a manga by Akira Toriyama. Toriyama's humor/parody manga Neko Majin Z features several concepts introduced in Dragon Ball Z (several Dragon Ball Z characters even make various appearances), but that manga is designed as a parody and not a true continuation of the series.

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