Editor Discusses “Dragon Ball” Yamcha Spin-Off

Here’s a familiar premise: a youth dies in an unfortunate accident and is reincarnated in a fantastic world. In Dragon Garow Lee‘s “Dragon Ball Side-Story: The Case of Being Reincarnated as Yamcha” that world is Akira Toriyama’s martial arts action hit, and the incarnated form is the series’ long overshadowed desert bandit. Starting with the Yamcha meeting young Goku, the protagonist works to avoid his fated death at the hands of a self-destructing Saibaiman.


Buzzfeed Japan recent spoke to Shueisha’s editor on the spin-off series in an interview which Kanzenshuu then translated…



–How was “Dragon Ball Side-Story: The Case of Being Reincarnated as Yamcha” planned out?
It started with some stupid talk while we were out drinking.

All of us at the editorial department were out drinking, and we started talking about what it would be like if Jump did a “reincarnated in another world” story ala a [Shōsetsuka niNarō novel. At that point we got excited over the idea of doing something like that with the Dragon Ball world.

–Why Yamcha?
We figured it would be good to take the weakest character and turn the tables. He’s not a Saiyan, doesn’t have a spouse or lover, fades out quicker than the other Earthlings, dies pathetically… etc. So the frisson created by making him the protagonist seemed interesting.

–What sort of improvements did Toriyama suggest?
He said the protagonist should die in a funny way, and also outlined the protagonist’s personality; pointers like that on how to make it easier for readers to get into the story.

–Was it tough getting it out the door?
Not particularly. Even Toriyama-sensei gave his ready consent.

However, midway through writing it we found out that the TV anime Dragon Ball Super was also having a Yamcha episode, so it was difficult timing the two to line up.


Read more on Kanzenshuu 

See the series for free in Japanese on Shueisha’s Shōnen Jump+ digital platform.


Also be sure to check out gifted manga mimic  Dragon Garow Lee‘s other parody art



Scott Green is editor and reporter for anime and manga at geek entertainment site Ain’t It Cool News. Follow him on Twitter at @aicnanime