Because of all the strange, but awesome, elements of the Dragon Ball franchise, there's a ton of meme potential in wacky screenshots, strange characters and the various continuity confusions across all the Dragon Ball series. Dragon Ball's internet presence goes way back, with entire websites dedicated to the series before the likes of Reddit came around. Dragon Ball memes have been around for quite some time as well, and classic lines like "It's over 9,000" and "This isn't even my final form," are now ingrained as staples of internet culture.
The world of Dragon Ball is known for its action, but it also has a great sense of humor, as do its fans. Thus, Dragon Ball has resulted in a ton of classic memes, and even some you might not have seen. Regardless, we decided to sift through the many memes of Dragon Ball. So, if you're looking for a little anime-related humor to cheer yourself up after a bit too much time on the dark side of the internet, then look no further. Hopefully, we won't ruin all these jokes by over-explaining them, but no promises! With that, get ready to laugh your butt off, with these 15 Dragon Ball memes.
15 SCREAMING WORKOUT
Here's a fun fact! Did you know that Goku's English dub voice actor, Sean Schemmel, once passed out after screaming too hard in a recording session? Screaming, yelling and shouting is such a big part of the Dragon Ball series. It's involved in nearly every powerful transformation and attack and is the subject of countless jokes about the series. Thus, memes like this one have come about.
The funniest part of this one is the seriousness of it all. We have one of Goku's most powerful forms, one that makes his brow look particularly angry and serious, with the somewhat serious claim of "new personal best in gym." Then it's flipped on its head with the "screamed my @$$ off," making us laugh our ass off.
14 THEY KILLED KRILLEN!
Perfectly, or rather imperfectly timed screenshots can make for some great memes, especially in animation. Single frames with strange expressions or movements that were meant to only last a second can be captured and repurposed for some quality internet humor. This particular meme pokes fun at both Dragon Ball and South Park. In both series, there is one particular character that dies quite a lot.
In Dragon Ball, Krillen dies kind of a lot, five times to be exact. But, this pales in comparison to Kenny, who dies in about 70% of all South Park episodes, only to come back completely fine the next week. This screenshot makes Krillen look unconvinced that anyone could possibly have died more than him. Seriously, look at that face, there's no way he'll believe you.
13 CELL'S VILLAINOUS WORDPLAY
We're not sure about you guys and gals at home, but we here at CBR enjoy a good pun, and so does Dragon Ball creator, Akira Toriyama. Toriyama's love of wordplay can be seen in the names of his characters. Nearly every character in the series is named after food or a food-related pun, the most well-known of his naming trends being the Saiyans of the series, all named after vegetables. Also well known is the Briefs family, all of whom are named after underwear.
This meme pokes fun at one particular member of the Briefs family, Trunks. In the Cell Saga, the bio-android killed Future Trunks with a ki blast through the chest before facing off against Gohan. The above meme gives a hilarious what-if of Cell absolutely burning Trunks with some genius wordplay. It's a good thing they summoned Shenron to revive Trunks from such a sick burn.
12 FUN GOKU, GRITTY GOKU
No matter if you're DC or a Marvel fan, we think everyone can appreciate this one. In the Dragon Ball Super anime, one of the enemies the Z-fighters face is Goku Black, an alternate future version of Goku whose body is inhabited by supreme-kai-in-training, Zamasu. As confusing as that may sound, all you need to know is that he's an evil version of Goku that is almost always shown in dark, overcast settings.
This gritty appearance is in rather contrast to the real Goku, who is pretty much always a chipper, lighthearted warrior. When comparing these two Gokus (Goki?) the difference between them seems a lot like the difference between Marvel and DC movies, and this meme points it out. We're not saying one is better than the other, but this is a pretty accurate representation of the two studios/publishers' film styles.
11 KRILLIAM NEESON
Like we said, Krillen is known for dying quite a bit. That's not necessarily because he's a weak character -- in fact, he's probably the strongest human in all of Dragon Ball -- it's more because he's had the unfortunate luck of facing off against some of the strongest enemies in the entire franchise. But, semantics aside, Krillen has still died quite few times, which is what makes this picture so hilarious.
A parody on the now infamous "I will find you, and I will kill you" line from Taken, this meme twists the quote up to poke fun at Krillen's nasty dying habit. "I will find you and you will kill me" perfectly fits with this screenshot of Krillen on the phone, mashing up the two popular action franchises.
10 DRAGON BALL SUPER CHEAP
One of the most disappointing parts of Dragon Ball Super is its low animation budget. The show has since gotten a lot better at balancing the budget and only cutting animation corners when necessary, thus the visuals have improved. But, in the early days of the series, things didn't look that great.
This picture pokes fun at the cheap animation of Super by comparing it to an MS Paint picture. It's not far off, looking at the screenshots provided, Goku is barely recognizable in these scenes! Adding to the cheap animation, Super's first two story arcs were just re-hashes of the previous two Dragon Ball movies, so this kind of memetic reaction seems all too apropos. Seriously, what is going on with Goku's face in the first screenshot?!
9 GOTTA HAVE THE HAIR
You know, it's never really been explained exactly why a Saiyan's hair turns gold when they go Super Saiyan. Sure, we know that anime and manga tend use transformations to represent an increase or change in power. Furthermore, we know that Akira Toriyama just got tired of coloring Goku's hair in black in the manga, so when he went super Saiyan it was just white. But, we're not really sure what purpose the golden hair serves.
Regardless, it has become a staple of the franchise, and upwardly spiked gold hair has found its way into other media as a parody/tribute to Dragon Ball Z. It's hard to not think of Dragon Ball Z when seeing giant blonde spikes, as shown in the above picture. Some hilarious genius gave this ridiculous hairstyle an amazing caption that Dragon Ball fans are sure to get a kick out of.
8 PERVERTED SAIYAMAN
Cover the children's eyes for this one, it might be a bit too risque! A great meme on the internet is taking out-of-context images of movies and TV shows that appear to have something suggestive going on and adding the logo of a well known adult-content website. In this case, it's a scene from the final chapters of Dragon Ball. It's from when Videl is trying to take down the "dangerous vigilante," The Great Saiyaman, aka Gohan in a goofy costume.
While attacking him using a jumping leg grapple (we are aware that is most likely not the term for the move), we get this lovely screen cap. Some hilarious individual used this frame of animation to imply that Videl and Gohan were doing more than fighting, prompting the use of the "Brazzers" logo. Come on you two, this is a family friendly show... sort of.
7 DO AS I SAIYAN, NOT AS I DO
Let's face it, Goku is kind of the worst dad, and an even worse trainer. In the Cell Saga, Goku completely gave up in his fight against Cell so his son could fight the maniacal villain instead. His reasoning is questionable, and Gohan doesn't seem to realize how negligent his dad can be. In fact, Gohan loves and admires his father, despite his poor advice at times, to the point of being rather ignorant of Goku's shortcomings.
When Gohan takes over the fight against Cell, he goes Super Saiyan 2 and manages to overpower the villain. During the fight, he says that Goku taught him to never give up, even when the odds are stacked against him. These words of wisdom would hit harder were it not for the fact that Goku gave up just a few episodes prior, as pointed out by this spot-on meme.
6 VEGETA'S BURN
Vegeta doesn't exactly have a sense of humor, since being a comedic genius isn't exactly on his list of priorities. That said, if Vegeta did make jokes, we'd imagine this would be one of them. Let's not forget that Vegeta is married to Bulma, who used to be Yamcha's girlfriend. We bet he gets a real kick out of knowing how immensely stronger he is than the infamously weak Yamcha.
That's what makes the above picture so hilarious, since if Vegeta thinks of Yamcha at all, it's only as a joke. We can't really think of a time that the prince of Saiyans was ever civil towards Yamcha, and we bet if he was a more petty person he'd probably be dishing out burns like this one all the time.
5 VEGETA GETS BURNED
Well, we let Vegeta have some fun, but now it's time to give him what he deserves and roast him alive! Vegeta's most well known character trait is his famous "Saiyan pride." It's a driving force behind most of his actions, always wanting to surpass Goku and constantly training as a result. Whenever his power is questioned or his pride is wounded, Vegeta tends to proclaim his status as the prince of all Saiyans.
This picture completely denies Vegeta the satisfaction, adapting the "Ima let you finish" Kanye West meme to slap down his pride. The best part is that it's true, Gohan did surpass Vegeta by achieving Super Saiyan 2 before he could. Even better is the fact that Vegeta has cried from a wounded ego before. But to be fair, his wounded ego also ended up helping him go Super Saiyan.
4 PAPA PICCOLO
Like we said before, Goku isn't the greatest dad in the world, but thankfully, Gohan's got Piccolo. From a young age, Piccolo was Gohan's teacher, becoming a father figure to the half-Saiyan. It's not too far-fetched to say that Piccolo is actually more of a father figure to Gohan than Goku himself was, being dead for most of his teen years.
This, of course, is what makes this confused face meme so perfect. We're not sure if fathers' day even exists in the world of Dragon Ball, but it would be hilarious if Piccolo got left out of the festivities. After all, Gohan is somewhat known for dropping Piccolo as soon as Goku comes back into the picture. It's as sad as it is funny.
3 THE INFAMOUS PINK SHIRT
Seems like Saiyans have the same thoughts about pink as humans do, mainly that guys don't like to wear it. Vegeta in particular seems to completely despise the color; he's a warrior after all, not a flower! Vegeta expresses his hatred of pink when Bulma presents him with his infamous pink button up, which has the word "badman" on the back. Bulma tricks Vegeta into wearing it after he was so rude to her, calling it the latest fashion.
Despite his embarrassment, Vegeta's Saiyan pride forces him to wear the shirt with, well, pride. He berates Trunks for staring at his shirt and even defends it against Goku's jabs. Maybe pink grew on him, which is why the above picture has us laughing so hard. Maybe not everyone has seen Mean Girls, but you don't need much context to find Vegeta matching colors with high school girls absolutely hilarous.
2 OG SUICIDE SQUAD
DC's Suicide Squad was named that because the villains which the team composed of were sent on suicide missions with no promise of coming back. Since the Suicide Squad film was a complete flop, we can be happy knowing there's still a better Suicide Squad out there (aside from the comics that is). Throughout the Dragon Ball franchise, various warriors have given their lives for the greater good, resulting in a different type of suicide squad.
Though the above meme says "original," Dragon Ball does not in fact predate the suicide squad comics. That said, this picture is still hilarious, portraying the four heroes as noble sacrificers, despite the fact that each of their deaths have also been individually memed to hell. Oh man, now we're thinking about Chiaotzu's death, we're not crying, you're crying.
1 YAMCHA IS WEAK AF
Do we even need to say anything more about Yamcha at this point? He's clearly one of the weakest characters in the entire Dragon Ball franchise. Heck, he wasn't even considered when Goku was gathering warriors to fight in the Universal Survival Saga. Despite being able to fly and shoot ki blasts, Yamcha is still pretty lame as a fighter, something that is perfectly portrayed by the above picture.
Another notoriously weak character is Magikarp, the flopping fish pokemon that is absolutely worthless until it evolves into a goddamn sea dragon. But, Magikarp might actually be stronger than Yamcha according to this meme, since a simple splash attack places Yamcha in that oh-so-familiar death crater. Of the many "Yamcha is weak" memes, this one is a hilarious classic.
What are your favorite Dragon Ball memes? Let us know in the comments!