Spoilers, naturally, as this is Season 3, so be warned.
As Dragon Ball Kai hurtles along unrestricted by the weighty training-garb of corporate dilly-dallying that the original series bore, (yes, that entire reference was just the opening segment of this sentence), some may recall that Goku had risen to the rank of Super Saiyan and was soundly beating the turf out of Frieza just as the planet Namek is on the verge of total destruction. That’s not to say that the fight is quite over yet, but viewers won’t be waiting around too long to move on to the next Saga. Bring on the androids!
So the Android Saga is a short one and can seem just a little bit messy. It really serves primarily as a setup for the next big storyline, the Cell Saga. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The Android Saga, which you could easily mistake for an early rough draft of Terminator, features a brave warrior making his way to the present from a dystopian future in an attempt to stop an insanely powerful android from being made and essentially wiping out humanity. This brave traveller, Trunks, may bear a slight resemblance to a present day character, and he’s a pretty tough customer. While Frieza was undeniably a landmark fight for Goku and friends, the impact of the Android Saga and its sequel is monumental and the end of this Season has already started the events of one of Dragon Ball Z’s standout conflicts.
As with the rest of Kai, you can expect this season to move with a lot more life, abandoning a large amount of repetitive catch-up sequences and omitting some redundant side stories entirely. The animation is true to the original but with stronger lines and colours, essentially making it look the way fans of the original think they remember it, (not unlike the Ocarina of Time 3D effect). I am, lamentably, one of those people who stuck with Dragon Ball Z for a while, but ultimately couldn’t finish watching the entire series all the way through. While I’m certainly not in favour of every series being updated, enhanced or heavily cut down, Dragon Ball Kai is undeniably an example of how this can work for the best. Dragon Ball Kai feels like a truer form of Dragon Ball Z, something that the original should have been from the beginning. If you started the original but your interest waned as it lagged or if you loved the original from start to finish, then you really need to give Dragon Ball Kai a chance.
Dragon Ball Kai Season 03 is available on DVD and Blu-ray from November 9th 2015, courtesy of the wonderful people at Manga Entertainment.