Dragon Ball had its heyday in the U.S. when the franchise headed west in the 1990s, but it looks like the franchise is on the rise. Over in Japan, Dragon Ball just surpassed Gundam fiscally at Bandai Namco, and fans are a bit stunned at the turnaround.
According to recent report by Forbes, Dragon Ball managed to earn more for Bandai Namco than Gundam did. The current fiscal year shows that Dragon Ball has earned 43.1 billion yen or $379 million for Bandai Namco. Gundam has only accrued about 32.7 billion yen which equals $288 million. Right now, Bandai Namco expected Dragon Ball to bring in about $670 million by the fiscal year’s end in March 2018 while Gundam comes after with $624 million.
Dragon Ball has managed to come ahead of Gundam in overall earnings this year, but the latter still reigns supreme when it comes to merchandise in Japan. The franchise has doubled the earning Dragon Ball has made in the hobby-based merchandise sector.
If you are surprised by Dragon Ball’s sudden leap, then there is little reason to be. The series has been doing well for itself since Dragon Ball Super made its debut in 2015. The anime finally started airing its English dub in the U.S. last October, and the sequel has gained an even bigger audience thanks to its global exports.
Gundam may have fallen behind because of its lacking anime presence. The franchise doesn’t have any new series currently airing, and its latest entry has been met with mixed reviews. Iron-Blooded Orphans wrapped its second season not long ago, and Funimation has licensed the new season for home release here in the U.S.
Dragon Ball Super's “Universal Survival” saga is part of the recent simulcast agreement that sites like Crunchyroll and Funimation have scored. Dragon Ball Super airs on Crunchyroll Saturdays at 7:15 p.m. CST. Toonami airs the English dub on Adult Swim Saturdays at 11:30 p.m.