Air Gear is not a household name. Many people might have missed it in its original run, or might only know of it as the poorly adapted anime. I am here to explain why Air Gear is my personal favorite manga of all time, and why you should read this obscure masterpiece.

Image for post
Image for post

Penned by Oh! Great, Air Gear is a manga that begins with a group of high school delinquents squabbling over turf, and ends with a high speed descent from space in order to save the world. Detractors criticize this, saying that it ruins the immersion or is just…

YouTube, as we know it, is the Thunderdome of some of the loudest voices on the Internet. Views are king, and YouTubers will do absolutely anything for even a moment of fame in the hopes of wriggling up the ladder of content creators. Shameless top YouTubers, embraced wholly by the platform itself, have even gone as far as to film a suicide victim’s corpse, or paid freelancers to hold up a sign reading “Death to all Jews.” The antithesis to this vile degradation of the spirit, however, also resides on YouTube — and he is reviewing Taco Bell.

Subject wearing sun hat, light polo shirt and tie, holding shortwave radio.
Subject wearing sun hat, light polo shirt and tie, holding shortwave radio.

This is…

Lord Slug! For some reason, this movie was infamous to me, despite having never seen it before. In my mind, this one was going to be a necessary hurdle in order to watch the better ones further down the line. I was actually pleasantly surprised! Especially after Tree of Might was a serious letdown.

Image for post
Image for post
Piccolo being stunned by Gohan’s whistling.

Usually the beginnings of Dragon Ball Z movies are pretty simple misadventures, but this one is really out of left field. It opens with Piccolo enjoying his solitude, meditating in front of a waterfall, when Gohan and Icarus (the dragon he rescues in the last movie)…

Today, we arrive at the third Dragon Ball Z movie. This is actually the first movie in the series that I am previously familiar with, having played some of the DBZ video games over the years that covered the story of Turles, Goku and Raditz’s other brother.

Image for post
Image for post
Gohan, Krillin, Bulma, and Oolong reviving the forest.

The story begins surprisingly benign, with Krillin, Bulma, Oolong, and Gohan going on a simple camping trip. Unbeknownst to them, a saiyan pod crashes far off into the distance and causes a large fire. After the forest is destroyed, the heroes go on a mission to find the Dragon Balls and revive it.

After Dead Zone, I was slightly worried about some of the earlier movies. I feel that before Dragon Ball Z introduces fan favorites like Vegeta, Trunks, and other characters that join the ensemble over time, that perhaps the storytelling well would run dry at times. Alas, I was (at least partially) correct.

Image for post
Image for post
Oolong dreaming of his wish from Shenron.

The movie begins with another ill-conceived hunt for the Dragon Balls spearheaded by Oolong with Gohan in tow. Seconds in, we already see that a stranger is gathering the Dragon Balls at rapid speed, revealed to be the infamous Dr. Kochin later.

This is actually a problem with…

The very first Dragon Ball Z movie, released in 1989, a whole 30 years prior to the most recent Dragon Ball movie. The colors are crisp, saturated, and show the highlights of Toriyama’s style — ultimately ushering in the wave of animation that would define the 90's.

This one is set between the events of Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z, serving as a prelude to the latter, evidenced by the film’s opening remark that Piccolo is going to “wipe the floor with Goku’s face” at the next World Tournament. At this point, Goku and Piccolo are the two strongest…

Image for post
Image for post
Tomita, surrounded by his equipment.

Born in Tokyo, Japan in October 1952, Yann Tomita, also known as Dr. Yann, Yang Tomita, Dr. Domestic, Deyanns, is a master of his craft that has garnered a cult following over the course of decades. Tomita spent much of his career directly involved with the pioneering of genres on the fringe in Japan, such as acid jazz, lounge music, space age music, exotica, and even hip-hop, before founding his own record label, Audio Science Laboratory.

Like many other acclaimed Japanese musicians who erred on the boundaries of the obscure around the same time, such as Haruomi Hosono or Ryuichi…

The 2010s were a hideous decade. We went into them with 3D movie glasses with the lenses popped out, so it was really hard to hit a lower point, but alas — the human condition is all about overcoming adversity, so this was not enough of a laurel to rest on. Despite the criminal fashion fads that we will never be able to remove from our brains, one may push through the discarded emoji print sweatshirts and cookie monster shirts to find some amazing music created in this decade. …

Sam Leach

creature from alabama writing about thing that interest me. portfolio and contact at http://nephil.im

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store