Much like comic book universes and other anime series, the Dragon Ball franchise has a number of stories that are usually considered outside of continuity. With the likes of Super Dragon Ball Heroes and Dragon Ball GT thought of as side stories that don't affect the main series currently running in both the anime and the manga, fans are sometimes left wondering just what can be considered "canon" and what stories take place outside of the realm of the "official story". Follow us won't you, as look into the past of the Dragon Ball franchise and determine just which stories took place and which hadn't!
The first major hurdle for continuity is the 13 Dragon Ball Z movies that ran during the second installment of the Akira Toriyama franchise. Introducing such characters as Turles, Lord Slug, Broly, Janenba, and Bojack to name a few, one of the main reasons as to why a lot of these movies simply can't work is that there is no time for many of them to have taken place. For example, in Dragon Ball Z: Fusion Reborn, both Goku and Vegeta are in the afterlife, battling the evil demon known as Janemba and giving fans a look at the "birth of Gogeta".
Of course, as we know, Gogeta officially wasn't introduced into canon until the recent Dragon Ball Super movie, Broly, that also introduced the legendary Super Saiyan officially. Of course, fans knew of Broly as he had three movies to his name prior to this, all taking place in Dragon Ball Z movies but these would officially be seen as outside of continuity. There simply isn't a timeline that would make sense for the events of Dragon Ball Z: The Tree Of Might or Dragon Ball Z: Super Android 13!
The likes of Dragon Ball GT and Super Dragon Ball Heroes are their own beasts, not thought of as continuity or part of the main story mostly because they weren't penned by Akira Toriyama. While you could make an argument for the latter taking place off screen from the main events of Dragon Ball Super, GT is simply lost to the sea of time and we doubt that things like the villain Baby or Super Saiyan 4 will be making their way into the main series any time soon.
When all is said and done however, you can break it down that anything written by, or approved by, Akira Toriyama is a part of the main continuity if he gives it the ok. Even so, continuity is simply up to you as an audience. If you want to consider GT the true sequel to Dragon Ball Z, that's up to you. If you feel that the recent battle between Super Saiyan Blue Goku and SSJ 4 Goku that took place in Super Dragon Ball Heroes is part of the main story, you totally can as well! There are no official rules on what is canon and what isn't, so it's up to you what stories you believe took place with Goku and his friends, which didn't.
What out of continuity stories of Dragon Ball would you like to see be made a part of the official canon? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics, anime, and Dragon Ball!
The Japanese-language and English dub releases of Dragon Ball Super are now complete and available to stream with FunimationNOW and Crunchyroll. Viz Media is releasing new chapters of the manga at a monthly rate that can be read entirely for free through the Shonen Jump digital library, and Dragon Ball Super's big movie, Dragon Ball Super: Broly, is now available on Blu-ray and DVD.