When it comes to Goku, there is no one prouder of the hero than Akira Toriyama. The man is the one who brought the Saiyan to life decades ago in Dragon Ball, and Toriyama recently shared a statement thinking fans for loving Goku as fiercely as he does.
Not long ago, a TV special aired in Japan listing the strongest anime and manga heroes to-date. The program revealed its votes tallied up to give Goku its list’s number one spot, and Toriyama wrote a short message to thank fans. Todd Blankenship translated the post for English-speaking fans, and you can check out what Toriyama had to say below:
“Even though I knew that battle manga went over well with readers of shonen manga, I still stubbornly decided to do a “Journey to the West” adventure manga. Since it’d be a bit drab to just leave things as is, I changed the monkey to a human with a tail and started off a modified version of “Journey to the West” where they search for the seven Dragon Balls.
But - sure enough - it didn’t get very popular, so I had no choice but to obediently change course to a battle-centric manga. Afterwards, I got rid of the tail (it was in the way) and so in the end only the name ‘Son Goku’ remained.
Thank you very much for selecting Goku as the No. 1 strongest hero!”
Of course, fans have known how strong Goku is for some time. Toriyama designed the hero to be one of the genre’s most powerful characters, and Goku continues to grow stronger after all these years. In the past, Toriyama has said he wanted to make Goku a “rare guy” who always seeks to be stronger. With a simple goal in mind, Goku has pursued his never-ending goal since 1984 - and the Saiyan still isn’t satisfied with how strong he is even today.