10 TV Shows/Anime Like Dragon Ball Z | TheReviewGeek Recommends

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Dragon Ball Z is one of the most iconic Shōnen franchises of all time. Whether you were playing with friends on the playground or wandering various child areas during your youth, you’d most likely hear someone utter a phrase or mimic a stance from the series. For those unaware, Dragon Ball Z is the sequel to Akira Toriyama’s Dragon Ball and follows its original protagonist Goku, his son Gohan and his friends fighting off menacing alien-like beings who dare to threaten the earth’s existence.

While the dragon balls feel less important in Dragon Ball Z, this sequel stacks the odds against Goku and his friends significantly.  They do so by introducing planet-destroying villains and granting our protagonists greater supernatural powers.

If you’re having trouble finding anime similar to Dragon Ball Z, fear not! We’ve discovered 10 alternate shows that’ll give you a similar experience as Dragon Ball Z. For your reading pleasure, we have included the similarities they all share too.

Additionally, for each anime we’ve reviewed, we’ve included a link that allows you to view our full thoughts about the series to see if it’s worth your time.

So without further ado, we present 10 TV shows that should whet the appetite when you’ve finished streaming Dragon Ball Z!


One Punch Man

Similarities – Superpowers & Fighting

As soon as One Punch Man’s first season concluded, many fans frolicked to their social media accounts to ask, “Can Saitama defeat Goku?” It was a hot topic for many months, with fans from both camps arguing back and forth. Who could blame them?

One Punch Man, like Dragon Ball Z, delivers mind-boggling fights, an amazing soundtrack, and enough comedy to keep you giggling. Like Goku, One Punch Man fights enemies ranging from humans to aliens and always finds a way to come out on top.

The story follows a man named Saitama, who trained effortlessly to achieve the power to defeat any foe with one swing of his fist. However, after gaining said power, Saitama’s fighting passion dwindles. That is, until he meets a cyborg named Genos. Genos shares intel about the Hero Association to Saitama, encouraging Saitama to sign up. Thus, Saitama accompanies Genos to the Hero Association in hopes of getting the recognition he deserves while reigniting his fighting spirit.

Like Goku, Saitama is a quirky character despite having immense power. Saitama’s desire for a good fight echoes Goku’s willingness to find and fight someone stronger than himself. Not only that, but One Punch Man has breathtaking animation and an exhilarating soundtrack.

You can read our thoughts on One Punch Man in our full-season review here!


Soul Eater

Soul Eater

Similarities – Light Comedy With Lots of Action

Soul Eater is essentially Dragon Ball Z if it had a gothic art style and a tighter focus on its surrounding cast. In addition to its well-animated action scenes, wonderful characters, and distinctive art style, Soul Eater has a lot to offer.

The story follows a few students who tackle dangerous missions to protect their city from dangerous entities. These students equip themselves with weapon-changing allies deemed Death Scythes. Their goal is to become excellent demon hunters.

Like Dragon Ball Z, Soul Eater contains many dramatic and comedic-driven scenes involving its characters. Soul Eater places its characters in arcs reminiscent of plot lines shared in Dragon Ball Z. Also, the lack of fearing a character’s death is also present in Soul Eater to some extent.


Kenichi - The Mightiest Disciple

Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple

Similarities – Protagonists & Raised Stakes

While it appears as a cliché martial arts anime, Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple offers a grander narrative with enough development and charm to warm the hearts of many martial arts fans. Not only is each episode of this series significant to its grander plot line, but the fights alone are worth a watch.

Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple follows Kenichi Shirahama, a boy whose fed up with being his karate club’s punching bag. After witnessing a girl named Miu Furiniji to take down some thugs, Kenichi makes an oath to become stronger. He meets up with Miu, and she directs him to a dojo that’ll help sharpen his martial arts skills. During his quest, Kenichi will encounter many enemies that’ll put his newfound mastery to the test.

Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple shares many similarities with Dragon Ball Z regarding protagonists and their progression. Both Goku and Kenichi endured training from multiple masters. Both anime emphasize their strength and raise the stakes further. Their supporting characters also get their time to shine in the anime and have distinct enough personalities.


Seven Deadly Sins

Similarities – Powerful characters with like-minded personalities

At first glance, Seven Deadly Sins and Dragon Ball Z both have incredible fight scenes and memorable characters. While the theme behind each of their worlds is vastly different, both anime contain fantastical creatures like tall giants to talking pigs.

Meliodas and Goku also share this leader-like role, where many characters often depend on them to save the day. Both characters have also gone through their fair share of deviant behavior toward women, despite Goku’s attempts to feel more out of the realm of curiosity. However, whenever they’re both thrown into a fight, fans can expect Meliodas to get serious.

For those unaware, Seven Deadly Sins follows the princess of Liones, Elizabeth, and her quest to find the Seven Deadly Sins. They are the only ones who can help Elizabeth reclaim her kingdom from Holy Knights. Elizabeth argues that this will bring peace and justice to those who felt betrayed.


Tenchi Muyo

Similarities – Setting & Characters

While not as memorable as Dragon Ball Z, Tenchi Muyo is a classic anime that’ll entertain those who miss the classic retro anime art style. Coupled with a stellar cast of characters and a vast world worth diving into, Tenchi Muyo is a sci-fi anime that’ll please many who watch it.

Like Dragon Ball Z, Tenchi Muyo’s world expands to that of galaxies and other-worldly planets. This anime does feature futuristic technology with a bit of action to excite and delight. While it delves deeper into the romantic side of things, the hilarity that ensues in Tenchi Muyo is reminiscent of that of Dragon Ball Z.

Tenchi Muyo follows Tenchi Masaki, who ends up in a harem involving many alien-like females after removing an ancient sword from his pedestal inside a cave. Not only that, but Tenchi learns that he has supernatural abilities, which he uses against a space pirate named Ryouko Hakubi. With every intergalactic woman he meets, Tenchi will uncover information about his ancestry, powers, and intel concerning the dire threat looming over his head.

While similar in action and comedy, Tenchi Muyo analyzes Tenchi’s dynamic with his newfound housemates while exploring his rich and saddening history with his father. Tenchi Muyo is worth watching if you’re looking for an anime that echoes Dragon Ball Z’s comedy and action and offers something new.


Naruto Shippuden

Similarities – Sequels That Raise The Stakes

Despite the original Naruto series sharing tropes with Dragon Ball Z, Naruto Shippudden feels more in line with Goku’s development and adventures in Z. Naruto Shippudden showcases Naruto’s transition to maturity via his newfound abilities and personality.

Furthermore, the action is turned up a notch in both sequel series compared to their origins. Naruto and Goku also gain superpowers that transform them into a golden, mystical state of being. The villains they encounter also have more complexities than those they’ve fought in their origin tales.

As such, Naruto Shippuden is the sequel to Naruto and follows the character of the same name. However, in Shippuden, Naruto is much older and wiser with his techniques. Yet with an increase in power comes deadlier foes aiming to take him down. Alongside his quest to save his best friend from a childhood villain, Naruto must go to-to-toe with an evil ninja unit deemed the Akatsuki, who are after the demon fox that remains dormant in him.


Inuyasha

Similarities – Shonen Concepts & Adventure 

Inuyasha is a classic romance and adventure series that wowed audiences when it was on Toonami. Even after all anime had fled Adult Swim, Inuyasha would manage to appear on the air. It’s a series with grand samurai-like action and colorful characters to please newer fans.

Inuyasha follows Kagome Higurashi, who finds herself sent 500 years in the past when violence reigned during Japan’s Sengoku era. She gets involved in a fight with a demon and causes a wish-gifting jewel to shatter into many pieces.

Aiming to redo her mistake, she enlists the help of a half-dog and human hybrid named Inuyasha and others. Together, they must find the shards and restore the jewel to its previous form and fight off the many demons in their way.

As one can tell, this series does borrow many tropes from shonen anime, especially Dragon Ball Z. Both Goku and Inuyasha have fought demonic-like enemies and are heroic protagonists. While not focused on as much in Dragon Ball Z, both series have their characters embark on adventures of some kind. The hunt for the Jewel’s shards is also eagerly similar to Goku’s past endeavors regarding searching for the dragon balls with Bulma and company.


Bleach

Bleach

Similarities – Themes & Characters

Dragon Ball Z was a memorable and influential series to many people who watched it. After it had its time to shine on-air, many frolicked to find the next big series to fill the void it left behind. Among those many series was Bleach, a series beloved for its epic battles, creative abilities, and distinct character design.

Although Bleach features a more complex narrative than Dragon Ball Z, the action and OST will grant viewers the same exhilarating feelings they’d have while watching DBZ. Ichigo, the series’ protagonist, also exhibits Goku’s mindset to fight anyone who dares hurt his friends.

Bleach starts with Ichigo getting attacked by a menacing creature called a Hollow. However, a wandering soul reaper named Rukia arrives to aid Ichigo. Unfortunately, the Hollow proves to be a challenge for Rukia, who then decides to bestow her power onto Ichigo. Ichigo takes down the monster with ease. With the soul-reaper power flowing through his body, Ichigo must now defend his town from Hollows and more looming threats.

The enemies Ichigo and his allies will fight will continuously grow in power. But like Dragon Ball Z, Ichigo will also get stronger and learn new abilities that will aid him in defeating these further threats. Bleach also has a few plot twists that will shock and entice people to continue forward with its content.


10 TV Shows & Anime Like Sailor Moon_Feature Image

Sailor Moon

Similarities – Fantasy Adventure & Action

Ah, Sailor Moon. The anime many argue was the sister series to Dragon Ball Z as both would find their audience during their run on Toonami. Despite Sailor Moon appearing more girlish than Dragon Ball Z, it shares many themes and tropes with its hardcore and action-heavy brother.

For those unfamiliar with Sailor Moon, it follows a girl named Usagi Tsukino, who wasn’t the brightest student in her class. After a fateful encounter with a cat named Luna, Usagi receives a magical brooch that transforms her into the Sailor Guardian, Sailor Moon. Usagi must search for the other Sailor Guardians, a kingdom’s princess, and a legendary crystal. She must also defeat the evil Queen Beryl’s onslaught of dangerous monsters.

Based on the plot synopsis alone, fans will notice the blatant similarities between Dragon Ball Z and Sailor Moon. Both series follow a protagonist who must defend their home planet from monstrous foes. Usagi and Goku also undergo some morsel of training to improve their skills.

Furthermore, Usagi’s search quests resemble Goku’s previous outings for the magic dragon balls. Goku’s Spirit Bomb or signature Kamehameha attack can also fall within the category of magic based on the attacks’ appearances and concepts. All in all, many Dragon Ball Z fans’ will walk away surprised by how similar it is to Sailor Moon.


Yu Yu Hakusho

Yu Yu Hakusho

Similarities – Themes

While Sailor Moon and Dragon Ball Z were renowned as the Queen and King of Toonami’s anime line-up, many would argue that Yu Yu Hakusho served as the television block’s prince. With its incredible fights, unforgettable characters, and handling of themes, Yu Yu Hakusho offers enough exhilarating moments to stand next to its beloved cousin.

Yu Yu Hakusho follows the average life of Yusuke Urameshi, whose trying to search for a meaning behind his existence. Unfortunately, his life gets cut short after he saves a child from becoming road kill. Now a mere spirit, Yusuke meets a death goddess named Botan, who informs Yusuke he’s now in the Spirit Realm.

After a brief explanation, she takes Yusuke to meet the Spirit Realm’s prince, Koenma. Koenma offers Yusuke another chance at life with the catch that he becomes his spirit detective and completes numerous tasks. Yusuke accepts the role as the Spirit Realm’s new spirit detective. Unbeknownst to Yusuke, these tasks won’t be simple as they’ll take him on a journey of discovery, angst, and sorrow.

Although Yu Yu Hakusho doesn’t feature as grand of an adventure as Goku undergoes in Dragon Ball Z, the series does tackle similar ideas of the afterlife and alternate worlds. Both series also tackle themes like friendship, trust, and hope. The fights also hold much weight to them, and the stakes are raised in every story arc in both series.

Yu Yu Hakusho is a must-watch if you’re looking for another series that delivers in both action and plot.


So there we have it, our 10 anime/TV show alternatives to watch when you’ve caught up with Dragon Ball Z!

What do you think of our picks? Do you agree? Are there any notable omissions? Let us know in the comments below!


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