Goku's parenting skills have been debated by the Dragon Ball fandom ever since the Dragon Ball Z days. One person you don't hear weighing in on the matter that often is series creator Akira Toriyama, but that's exactly who is now speaking up about Goku's fitness as a dad... or lack thereof.
The Dragon Ball Super: Broly manga is now hitting shelves, and one of the features of the book is a Q&A with Toriyama. Thanks to some dedicated Dragon Ball translators, we now have some new insight from Toriyama about why Goku's issues with parenting may actually be a Saiyan cultural trait at work:
"Akira Toriyama: Innately, Saiyans place emphasis on increasing the number of strong people in their race, so bonds between parent and child aren't all that strong. King Vegeta and Paragus aim to use their sons to fulfill their own pride and ambitions, respectively, while Bardock, unusually for a Saiyan and more similarly to Earthlings, seems to have just a bit of fondness for his son. Come to think ot it, Goku doesn't seem to think about his children all that much."
The book outlines some additional side-conversation from Toriyama on the subject, in which the topic of why Vegeta has developed into more of a caring father figure than Goku (answer: Bulma), while it's also pointed out that it was ironically Bardock's affection for his son (as seen in the retconned Dragon Ball Super: Broly origin story) that would eventually bring the universe the savior that is Goku.
In regards to Goku, a lot of the fan debate about his parenting skills isn't geared toward whether he's a good father or not -- people know that he cares about his sons Gohan and Goten, and his granddaughter Pan. It's just that Goku tends to be overly focused on fighting rather than parenting, or working a job, or domestic duties (sorry Chi-Chi), and as a result of all that fighting, Goku has spent some key times of his children's lives literally putting the "dead" in "deadbeat Dad."
It's good to see that at least Toriyama recognizes it. For the full translations from the Dragon Ball Super: Broly comic Q&A, check out the transcript below:
Since it doesn't seem like they'll be up on Kanzenshuu immediately, and quickie-translations are coming out, here's a summary of Toriyama's Q&A responses in the Broly anime comic, released today (summary, rather than full translation, although they're incredibly brief): pic.twitter.com/oUUazuFpfa— Cipher (@Cipher_db) May 2, 2019
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Dragon Ball Super currently airs its English dub on Adult Swim during the Toonami programming block Saturday evenings. It is also available to stream on Funimation and Amazon Video. The Japanese language release of the series is complete, and available to stream on FunimationNOW and Crunchyroll. The manga has chapters that can currently be read for free thanks to Viz Media. Dragon Ball Super: Broly is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.
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