Internet Defense League


Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Dragon Ball

Dragon Ball was to Japan what Superman was to North America.  It started out as parody of "Journey To The West" And evolved into one of the most well known Manga series in the world.  It has had 4 anime series, 3 public service videos, 6 specials, 3 OVA, 3 Live action films, 22 video games, 1 parody, 3 Crossovers and 1 abridged series by Team Four Star.  This is no franchise, no no.  Franchises has limits to what they market.  This on the other hand is a living breathing Beast that grows the more mediums it attaches too.  It is as legendary as the Super Sayian that put it on the map.

The story begins begins with Son Goku, a strange naive boy that has a tail.  He meets a girl named Bulma who is on the hunt for Dragon Balls.  A group of 7 sphere shaped objects, with stars printed on them that indicate the number of each one.  Gathering them together would summon a mighty dragon with the purpose of Granting one perfect wish.  However they aren't the only ones, for many villains are on the hunt for them as well.  Some of which are willing to kill anyone that gets in their way.  These villains include, Emperor Pilaf who wants world domination,  Commander Red of the Red Ribbon Army who only wanted to grow taller (He should have visited Gattaca.), Crane Hermit, an evil martial arts teacher who wanted to outshine Master Roshi (The perverted teacher we know and love.)  and King Piccolo, the self proclaimed King of Demons that wanted revenge on the world for sealing him in a rice cooker.  There was more to come in Z  with introduction of the Sayians.  A race of humanoids with tails similar to that of Goku, who turns out to be one of them, sent to Earth as an infant as his home planet, Vegeta explodes.  Hmm an alien from a dying planet sent to earth as a child? That sounds vaguely familiar......nah.  As well as the Nameks a race of aliens that created the Dragon Balls.  I could go on about the Majins and GT, but I don't want to put you folks in the same suffering I went through.  The majority fanbase said that Dragon Ball Evolution killed the franchise but I believe that Majin Buu and GT did it first and I'll tell you why.   The Frieza Saga was supposed to be Goku's final appearance.  He was to die on Namek while his son Gohan would take up the mantle as world Savior.  However the majority fanbase complained on 2 aspects.  One at the time, Gohan didn't really do anything of use save for beating up Vegeta in Ape form and stealing the Dragon Ball.  And two, because Goku got killed.  To fix this they introduced the Cell Saga in which Gohan instead of Goku would defeat Cell in the end.  Of course that only satisfied half the Majority, they still wanted Goku back.  So they devised a way to bring him back and make him the main hero again.  This in turn made GT, which caused that same Majority including myself to not watch Dragon Ball anymore.  So suffice to say this was the one time in the history of entertainment where the fans are to blame.

But I digress, you don't want to read about how I am probably gonna be lynched by said majority.  You want to know if something like Dragon Ball's concept could exist.

First and foremost, because this is a big thing, I am gonna divide it into known factors and eliminating the obvious.  As explained in my Justice League article there is still no proof of humanoid aliens.

The first factor is the physical part of Dragon Ball: The Training.  Throughout the entire series, Goku, Krillin and many other fighter characters have gone through various impossible training regimens of the Kame-Sen-Ryu, or in english meaning the Turtle School. I am gonna analyze all of them. I should warn you ahead while it's a great training regimen, do not try this at home without proper supervision. Many of the training is exaggerated for anime purposes.

1.  Skills Analysis:  Before actual training begins, Roshi inquires his students of where they trained.  In Goku's case he learned from his Grandfather Gohan Sr.on the basics of martial arts.  Next he gives his students a speed test to see how fast they can run.  This is crucial because Roshi can run at a time frame of 5 seconds from point A to point B.  Last but not least is a test of determination.  In this case he uses a rock with the Kame symbol written on it and throws it across a dangerous terrain.  If one gets the rock and brings it back, they don't get to go hungry.  However if neither one gets the rock back in 30 minutes they both starve for the night.  This actually exists in more ways than one.  Many martial arts schools do ask if their potential students had prior training be it at home or another school.   Some even test their students prior to see what level would be appropriate for training.  Unfortunately so does the harsh punishments in most schools.  Jackie Chan himself once claimed, that the school he first trained him would punish him or other students should they fail in a certain exercise

2. Is their early morning training. Roshi's students are required to do a milk run on a small island village, by hand before breakfast.  They are required to go to specific locations in order to develop certain strengths. From climbing a mountain to outrunning violent wildlife, all while carrying the heavy boxes of milk bottles in their hand. This two exists in real life in the form of combinations between Cardio exercise to strengthen the heart and Isometrics by holding the milk boxes while doing other exercises. 

3. Is their mid-morning training.  Roshi's students are required to plow a farmer's field with their bare hands to condition them.  This does exist in real life in the form of the Iron Shirt and Iron Palm Training.  A form of exercise designed to condition and strengthen your body to its natural invulnerability. It is extremely painful, but if done right, can make even the smallest child near invincible.

4. Is their end-morning training.  Roshi's students are required to study various academic subjects, from literacy to math.  This does exist in two ways.  One, it's home school.  Two, many martial artists in the world believe that the mind is just as important as the body.  After the morning training is complete Roshi and his students are required to nap before lunchtime.

5. Is their early afternoon training.  Roshi's students are required to work part time in a construction site.  Unlike mid-morning training, they are aloud to use tools provided they are not power tools.  This was meant developing strength and balance, as well as earn them a few dollars.  This does exist too.  Many people have often used their time on chores and jobs as a way of getting exercise.

6. Is their mid-afternoon training.  Roshi's students are required to swim ten laps in a lake to develop speed and agility. To further motivate them into swimming faster a T-Rex is placed on the island to keep them from staying on shore, and the lake is infested by a shark to keep them swimming.  As scary as that is, it does exist in real life.  On a season 2 episode of Ripley's Believe It Or Not,  a swimming instructor was known to place a large Crocodile in the pool to motivate his students into swimming faster.

7. Is their evening excercise.  Roshi's Students are required to be tethered to a tree near a large beehive and dodge the angry swarm in order to increase their perception and reflexes.  While there is no record of actual training of this caliber to exist.  The concept it self exists in various forms.  Such as dodging tennis balls being thrown at you.

At the end of all that the students are required to eat, rest and repeat until they are ready.  As stated before do not try any of this without supervision or at all since most are exaggerated.

Another concept of the physical training is the weighted clothing and gravity rooms.  The former is armbands, shirts, shoes and the like designed to increase resistance on the body without limiting regular movement.  This does exist in the form of ankle weights, wrist weights, and the like.  However while it does work, it can strain your body if you aren't careful.  Never overdo it in any exercise.  As for the gravity room, the closest thing I could find as one is the Gravitron.  A popular amusement part ride that uses Centrifugal force to stick you to the wall. I don't advise anyone to make miniature gravitrons for your own safety.  It took five turns on the Gravitron for me to nearly throw up my intestines.  However the concept of gravity training exists.  On most planets of the solar system, the increased gravity or decreased gravity alters the body weight of anyone who is on it.  A 100 pound person could way 16 on the moon for example. Much like the weighted clothing, it helps with resistance training.

The  next factor is a rather popular concept known as Ki.  For those who know the show, but don't know what I mean.  Ki is a spiritual energy that exists within all living things.  On the show its what causes the Kamehameha, a destructive wave of energy that annihilates anything in its path.  This does exist in real life through various forms.  The most popular is known as Chi/Qi  which the japanese word Ki originated from. You may remember in my first post "Legend Of Zelda" how I talked about the bracelets that balance Chi.  Well I never fully mentioned what it was until now.  There are many views both Scientific and Mystical which debate on whether or not Chi actually exists.  Many practitioners in medicine and martial arts often use chi as an example of their concept.  The most popular being Acupuncture, in which a series of needles are placed into certain parts of the body to attain certain medical benefits. This practice has been proven to be effective. So if it works then obviously Qi exists right?  Then there is the martial arts aspect of it.  Many martial artists have claimed that the secret to breaking boards and bricks and the like are a combination between conditioning as mentioned in the above physical training and mastering Chi.  This is often debated and will be left open for discussion since I myself don't know the known truth behind that.

Last but not least is the Dragon Balls themselves. Could a group of objects grant your wishes?  Yes and no.  The yes refers to the various wish granting objects and artifacts as well as myths. I myself believe that if a clock ever says 12:34 be it noon or midnight, my wishes will come true, and in a way they have.  However the no is essentially an age old question.  Does wish come true, or do you make it come true?

As usual debate, argue and let me know what I miss.  Stay tuned for more.

Update:  There was a thing I was neglecting because I couldn't think of a way to explain this Until Now.  The Super Saiyan Transformation.  I couldn't fully grasp the concept of a real life example, that is until I was working on the Analysis of the Incredible Hulk. I said that power like that through raw emotion was in us the whole time.  However it does not mean you can access it anyway you want.  For example That wives tale on hysterical strength about the Mother rescuing her child.  She had that power but she couldn't use it until her son was in danger.  Then it struck me, what Goku stated during the Cell Saga.  "The Power comes from a need not a desire."  What he meant was that if we needed it, not wanted it, but needed it, it will be there.  When Goku first transformed there were certain factors. 
1. The Spirit Bomb took all his energy away.
2. Frieza was still alive.
3. Frieza wounded Piccolo.
4. Frieza killed Krillin
5. Frieza threatened to kill Gohan.

These factors swirled together in a string of anger and desperation that caused Goku to access power he never even knew he had.  However the only thing unexplained was where did this power come from? Was it inside him or did it come from a higher power?  The answer could be the latter because prior to the transformation the environment changed dramatically.  The skies blackened, thunder and lightning struck everywhere, but no rain in sight.  The waves rocking back and fourth violently.  It was almost as if Planet Namek was just as pissed off as the transforming Super Saiyan. But I don't wish to confuse you the reader any further, so here's my final thoughts on the matter.

To become a real life Super Saiyan you have to have a need for that power,  I don't know if a false need can access such great strength, but hey that's how Gohan transformed.  However much like the one in the anime it comes at a terrible price.  If you can't control said power it controls you and causes you to act on your emotional state rather than basic reasoning.

No comments:

Post a Comment