How Does 'Dragon Ball Super: Broly' Retcon Bardock?

Dragon Ball Super: Broly gives the series one of its biggest retcons, as much of the bakstory about the Saiyan race and the destruction of their homeworld, Planet Vegeta.

Now that Broly is out, we've been going back through the film to breakdown how, exactly, it retcons key areas of Dragon Ball mythos. In this article we'll be taking a look at how Dragon Ball Super: Broly retcons Bardock, the father of Goku!

Gray Area - Bardock, like Broly, is a very iconic Dragon Ball character who has always maintained a position in the "gray area" of "official" mythos. Bardock's introduction in the 1990 TV movie Dragon Ball Z: Bardock - The Father of Goku was never considered to be official canon by many. That was likewise the issue with the 2014 manga short, Dragon Ball Minus: The Departure of the Fated Child, which was a major retcon of Bardock's backstory and Goku's origin. Because Dragon Ball Minus appeared in a collected volume of Jaco the Galactic Patrolman stories, its status as "official canon" has always been high disputed. In short: even though Bardock is a major figure in Dragon Ball, he's never been a fully recognized one... until now.

The Minus Version - The major retcon that Dragon Ball Super: Broly makes to Bardock is confirming that the Dragon Ball Minus version of the story is now official canon. Broly changes the context of Dragon Ball Minus' story to better tie it to Broly's, but the overall set of events are the same. Bardock is a warrior of Planet Vegeta when it falls under Freeza's rule. Bardock and all his fellow Saiyans out conquering worlds get an order from Freeza to return to Planet Vegeta, but Bardock is suspicious of the decree. Some asking around reveals to Bardock that Freeza is afraid of the legend of the Super Saiyan God, and makes the low-level warrior think that the entire Saiyan race is in danger because of that legend. Bardock confides in his wife Gine that he will be stealing a space pod to smuggle their son Kakarot off to another world, and despite Gine's initial reservations, they enact their plan, sending Kakarot to earth. Soon after, Bardock is seen leading an attack on Freeza's mothership in space, and trying to block the evil emperor's Supernova blast - only to be disintegrated along with all of Planet Vegeta. Another minor scene from Minus added to Broly reveals that Vegeta and Goku's brother Raditz are off-world on a mission together when Planet Vegeta is destroyed, as they ignored the order to return home.

What Was Lost - What Dragon Ball Super: Broly effectively does is erase the events of Dragon Ball Z: Bardock and pave over them with an official canon built on the skeleton of Dragon Ball Minus. Gone is the depiction of Bardock as a future-seeing warrior who heroically battles Freeza and his army, and was a prophet of Planet Vegeta - which was the entire storyline of the original film. There was also no Gine in the original film, and Goku was just a baby when Planet Vegeta was destroyed, as opposed to being an older child in the Minus version. The only real nod to the original Father of Goku movie is the image of Bardock hovering in front of Freeza's ship, before being destroyed by the Supernova blast.

Dragon Ball Super: Broly is out now. Dragon Ball Super currently airs its English dub on Adult Swim during the Toonami block Saturday evenings at 9:30 p.m. It is also available to stream on Funimation and Amazon Video. The Japanese language release is available to stream on FunimationNOW, VRV, and Crunchyroll.