|Son Gokuu to Nakama-tachi |
Son Gokuu and Friends
|Picture: [Back of Toriyama's head; Toriyama has a cigarette.]|
Dragon Ball is set somewhere that looks like China, but the actual place and era are not decided. The story is simple, and I can draw without thinking about it. But, there's lots of details to get right and it's hard to come up with the endings. So, I've had butterflies in my stomach. Anyway, it doesn't really matter if anyone likes this manga; I had fun drawing it.
|Doragonbooru kiki ippatsu |
One-Shot Dragon Ball Crisis
|Picture: [Toriyama shivering, wearing a heavy coat, cap, and mask.]|
Happy New Year. Speaking of which, I debuted with my first manga on January, at age 23. I have become a full-fledged manga artist at age 30. To get to this point, I have had to work insanely hard, and put in many long nights. I don't like being this busy, and I don't want to go sleepless, so I will try my best (to not work so hard.)
|Tenkaichi budoukai hajimaru!! |
The Tenka-ichi Budoukai is Starting!!
|Picture: [Toriyama as a cigarette-smoking dog, wearing aviator's glasses and helmet.]|
One evening half a year ago, I picked up a stray cat. It was raining that night, and the cat looked so pitiful, I decided to bring it into the house until the rain stopped. But, it's a cute, friendly cat, and we ended up keeping it after all. It's solid black, so we named it "Koge" ("scorched"). In addition, my assistant hates big cats. Matsuyama-kun gets really scared when he comes into work now. [The cat's picture appears on the cover flap of volume 12.]
|Daiketsu Shousen |
|Picture: [Toriyama struggling on a bike, wearing sunglasses and a "Fiat" cap.]|
Until recently, when I had to travel outside of my neighborhood, I would either go by car, or motorcycle. This has allowed my stomach to get fat. Which is bad! So, I decided to travel by bicycle more often to shape up. However, I always go slowly as I glance around at the young women out on the streets. Obviously, this is not a way to get exercise.
|Massuru Tawaa no Kyoufu |
The Fear of Muscle Tower
|Picture: [Toriyama as a bird, driving in his car.]|
I've mentioned it many times before, but I have trouble coping with cold weather. When the heater is turned on, my head becomes heavy; when turned off, my hand stiffens up and I can't hold my pen correctly for drawing... And of course, I can't ride my bicycle or motorcycle when it gets cold out. Always, it's by car (I give up quickly given the weather.) I'd rather hibernate until Spring. So -- "Come on Spring! Hurry up!" I wait every day for Winter to end.
|Buruma no Daishippai!! |
Bulma's Big Failure!!
|Picture: [Toriyama wearing an old man's outfit, and a cat-face mask.]|
Lately, my neighborhood has become very noisy, due to building construction and road work. While there is greater convenience from this, I can no longer see weasels, pheasants, bush warblers, or other animals. And the noise level keeps rising. I am from the countryside, so I prefer peaceful and quiet surroundings. Although it would be inconvenient, I am thinking more and more about returning to the countryside to live again...
|Tsuiseki!! Buruu Shougun |
Pursuit!! Blue Shogun
|Picture: [Toriyama holding a baby in a blanket; both are wearing dark glasses and face masks.]|
A little time ago, my son was born. At last, I too am a father. Before, my wife and I would go out together, but we can't do that now with the child here. Anyway, in a few years, we'll be able to do more things together. But, he's cute right now, so I can hold out. Also, I can use him as an excuse to visit the toy store. I have had to learn how to change a diaper while working, though.
|Songokuu toggeki |
Son Gokuu's Rush
|Picture: [Toriyama on his motorcycle, driving towards the reader, wearing a "Bird" helmet.]|
My typical day with a pen is: Wake up at 12 noon. At 1:00 PM, my assistant, Matsuyama-kun, arrives and we start working. Between 7:00 and 8:00 PM, I eat again, take the dog for a walk, and feed the bird. At 9:00 PM, my assistant returns home. Then, I watch TV while working. At 11:00 PM, I take a bath. Afterwards, I kind of work and just kind of mess around. I give up and return to bed at 4:00 AM. This is how my "pen" day normally goes.
|komatta toki no uranai baba |
The Old Fortune Teller for Times of Trouble
|Picture: [Drawing of fat-faced Sasuke giving the peace sign, with a big-eyed black cat beside him.]|
My son is about 5 months old now, and he is very energetic every day. I had worried about how he'd get along with the cat (Koge). They look like rivals. Before the boy was born, Koge was very easy-going. But now, it acts like a spoiled brat. Koge will intentionally sleep on his rival's futon. I will wave the fan at my son, and the cat will ask to be fanned too, thinking that it is as cute as my son is. Then, they will sprawl out together and fall asleep. I hope that they will make a fine team.
|Dai 22 kai tenkaichi budoukai |
Tenka-ichi Budoukai #22
|Picture: [Close-up of Toriyama, wearing a face mask.]|
There is nothing good that can be said about nearsighted-ness. If I go swimming at the pool or seaside, I can hardly see the girls in their swimsuits. If I get excited about one and put my glasses on, it always turns out to be some old woman. I take my glasses off again quickly, and I invariably miss the good-looking ones. If I go to a mixed sex spa (onsen; mixed sex onsen are rare outside of remote villages), my glasses always fog up. Damn this nearsighted-ness. People, take care of your eyes.
|Tenkaichi no suupaa batoru!! |
The Tenka-ichi Super Battle!!
|Picture: [Photo of Toriyama holding Sasuke out in the countryside.]|
I'm using a photo for the first time here (on the cover flap). This is a shot of me and my son, Sasuke. I apologize for being an indulgent parent, and making such a photo public. But, I've discovered that using one of my snapshots in this column is very helpful, since I no longer have to bother with making a special drawing for it! This may be too easy an idea, but I can't help wondering whether to continue this pattern (that is, using a photo instead of an original illustration.) Next, I could try running a shot of our cat, Koge, or our dog, Mato, etc. Hmmm, this could work out well!
|Pikkoro Daimaou no kyoufu! |
The Fear of Demon King Piccolo!
|Picture: [Photo of Koge walking amongst the trees.]|
This is our cat, Koge. It looks so black that you can't tell what it is. But anyway, it's Koge! At midnight, three years ago, we picked it up as a stray kitten. It is very friendly and good-natured. During her first delivery -- Koge is female -- we were very concerned and fussed around a lot. Then, she delivered four kittens, and we were very relieved. By the way, my wife is Koge's godmother, and had given her this brilliant name: "Koge".
|Songokuu no gyakushuu!? |
|Picture: [Close-up photo of Matoryoushika.]|
Our family has a pet dog, named "Matoryoushika". She is named after a Russian folk toy. Because "Matoryoushika" is a little too long, we call her "Mato". She is a Siberian husky, and is well-adapted to the cold. I can not help being envious of her, since I'm so susceptible to cold weather. She is a female, but not fragile. She's so robust that my son always ends up crying when she knocks him down. No matter how busy I am, it is my honor to be able to play with her on an every-day basis.
|Saranaru hiyaku |
A Major Leap
|Picture: [Drawing of the back of Toriyama's head as he watches a snow-filled TV.]|
Recently, I almost never go to the movie theaters. Either I'm too busy, or my wife has to care for our son (I'm too considerate to leave my wife behind and go out on my own.) So, I've been renting out movies one right after another. Even when I'm very busy, I never stop watching one. My TV is on all night long!
|Gunyuu katsukyou! |
|Picture: [Close-up photo of baby Toriyama.]|
I've run out of ideas for the drawing or photo for this column. So, I'm using one of my childhood snapshots. Back then, I had developed a lump on my head, which made me look like a kewpie doll. I had surgery to remove the lump, but the surgical scar is still obvious even now. I hope that I never go bald...
|Ryuu ko ai utsu! |
Dragon (?) Strike!
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama, with a running nose, bandaged finger, and sweaty face. He's saying "I look horrible."]|
"I've got a 20-day holiday! Yahoo!" I was enjoying life too much, when misfortunes struck one after the other. First, I came down suddenly with a serious cold. Several days later, I recovered and went for a drive. When I returned home, I got out of the car and closed the door on my fingers. Ouch! One finger bone was chipped. While I was groaning over that pain, my old cold came back. Thank you, God! Thanks for the nice holiday (forced laughter)!
|Katsunai Kyoufu |
Fear of Not Winning
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama at his drawing table, smoking a cigarette.]|
I usually work at a kotatsu (a low table, with a blanket around the sides, and a heating lamp underneath), with a TV nearby, unless my assistant works with me. This is not only because I feel uneasy at a chair and desk, but because I also feel lonely when the TV or video player isn't on. However, I never pay that much attention to what is on, being happy to glance up at one scene or another while concentrating on my work. I'm really dedicated, aren't I?
|Songohan to Pikkoro Dai maou |
Son Gohan and Demon King Piccolo
|Picture: [Close-up drawing of Toriyama wearing a baseball cap, enjoying hot weather.]|
As I've mentioned many times before, I'm very sensitive to the cold, and I dislike winter intensely. I'd rather hibernate like a bear at that time. So, of course I don't go skiing, even though many people ask me to join them. Why do those people go to colder places during the cold season? On the other hand, I like hot summers, when I can be in high spirits! Have you noticed that I often draw summer scenes in my manga? Summer is best! (If you don't include mosquitoes, of course...)
|Isoge! Songokuu |
Hurry! Son Gokuu
|Picture: [Extreme close-up drawing of Toriyama with the mask and "Bird Studio" cap.]|
I'm probably like everyone else, in that I love Tokyo Disneyland. (Although, I've only gone 6 times so far.) Though I've only seen a small part of it, the place feels "professional". I remember going to the Hoikuenji movie theater to watch "101 Dalmatians (101 piki wan-chan daikouji = 101 Puppies' Big March.)" I felt a great longing after seeing that wonderful artwork. I'd like to give Disney "thanks" for that.
|Tenka wake me no Choukessen!! |
Earth's Divisive Super Battle!!
|Picture: [Drawing of little Toriyama, making sketches of a horse.]|
I had this habit of drawing pictures of things that I really wanted to be given. As a child, I wanted a horse, so every day I drew pictures of a horse. Eventually I lost interest in that, so I next started on pictures of monkeys. Later came a strong urge to do pictures of bicycles. Even though I was a bad child, my artwork improved because of this. And, although that old habit has given way to my current job, I still continue to do it.
|Mezase! Namekku no hoshi |
Aim For Planet Namek!
|Picture: [Close-up drawing of Toriyama at his table, with a puffy jaw.]|
Auugghh...! The thing I've feared the most has occurred again. The cavity in my tooth, which I had ignored because I didn't want to go to the dentist, flared up again! The day the pain started was a deadline for me, and it hurt so much that I couldn't sleep. Finally, I caved in and went to the dentist. It was too late for a filling, so he pulled the tooth out. Afterwards, I had a different pain to cope with while working. That was the worst day in hell! (Through my own fault, too.)
|Namekku sei-jin no Teikou |
The Resistance of the Namekians
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama crouched over, with a bandage on the seat of his pants.]|
After the toothache, I developed three small lumps in my left buttock. One of them became painful. I couldn't sit down, so I went to the doctor to have that one removed. He didn't use anesthesia, so I thought I was going to die during surgery. Two weeks after the cut healed, I went back to have the other two removed. For one month, I have had to sit only on my right buttock while working. This is Hell...
|Kyoufu no Ginyuu Tokusentai |
Ginyuu's Battle Team of Fear
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama tipping sideways, saying "Itete" (Ouch).]|
I've believed in the strength of my body. My shoulders are almost never stiff. But lately, my right wrist has been stiffening up and getting sore. Lucky! Thinking back, from the time Dr. Slump was being serialized, to the present with Dragon Ball, I have rarely taken a break from work in the last 11 years. If I visit a doctor, he may recommend that I take a 3-month vacation. (However, yesterday my wrist was feeling better... Damn...)
|Gokuu ka!? Ginyuu ka!? |
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama with robot Sasuke, and robot baby in a blanket.]|
At the end of October, I became a father for the second time. This time, it's a girl. Mother and daughter are doing fine, and I am very happy. Before the older boy was born, I swore I'd be a very strict father. However, I've become a real pushover, and have lost the faith of those that heard me make my pledge. This time, I planned on being more severe, but I can't be like that to a girl. Lately, I've tried to weasle out by saying "What's wrong with indulging my own children?"
|Furiiza Chou henshin!! |
Freeza's Super Transformation!!
|Picture: [Little robot Toriyama sitting in a theater, surrounded by other robots.]|
I love movies. When I was younger I would go to the theater 4 times a week. When I was in grade school I would pack a lunch, ride my bicycle to the Nagoya Movie Theater and spend the whole day watching movies. In this way, the huge amount of movies I watched became the basis for how I draw comics. When I am thinking about the story or how I should arrange the frames, I imagine it like I am seeing a movie in my head, and then run my pencil across the paper. Ah, that was good.
|Son Gokuu... Fukkatsu!! |
Son Gokuu... Is Revived!!
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama, with three Siberian huskies.]|
My dog bore three puppies. Sadly, one of them died soon after, so we only have two puppies now. When my cat had kittens, I'd thought she was clumsy during child birth, and helped her by cutting the umbilical cords. This time, I'd watched our dog several days in advance, in order to help her. But, she didn't need my help. I don't like the idea of parting from the two puppies; I want to keep both of them...
|Densetsu no Suupaa Saiyajin |
The Legendary Super Saiya-jin
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama with mask, at his table, looking frustrated.]|
In truth, I have trouble finding topics for this column. Since I'm always occupied by the weekly series, I can't come up with anything else to write about. It's also bothersome, having to come up with something to say in the contents page at the end of every Shonen Jump. Over half of those Jump comments are written by my editor, Mr. Kondo, because I've asked him to. Every week, Mr. Kondo asks me what topic I've written about... I have nothing to tell him. Sigh...
|Mirai kara kita shonen |
The Boy From the Future
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama's back, as his looks at model books in his living room.]|
I can never sit around and just do nothing. I always have to concentrate on something, or I feel uneasy. No matter how useless it is, I need to dedicate myself to it. So, with nothing to do, I wander the room aimlessly, seeking something to interest me. I wish that my work was one of those "somethings".
|Gokuu, Yabureru! |
Gokuu, Near the End (Become Ragged)!
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama imitating "The Scream".]|
I hate mice. Spiders and snakes don't bother me a bit, but I can't stand mice. At this time, my house has suddenly become a mouse mansion. I caught 14 of them with just some fly paper. There are still a lot left. Since I am scared out of my wits, it's hard for me to get back to work. If I just hear the patter of their feet I can't enter my work room. That's why I've fallen behind lately.
|Jaakuna yokan |
|Picture: [Backside drawing of Toriyama daydreaming at his table.]|
I can't believe that Dragon Ball is already up to book 30. Not only has little Gokuu grown up, but he's become a father. It's only through the help of a lot of people that this manga has lasted this long. I would really like to thank them. But what really surprises me, is that I was able to keep this up for 7 years. I've gotten a new respect for myself and my perseverance.
|Shinobiyoru Seru |
Cel, The Stalker (Steal Near to)
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama trying to draw in the middle of piles of model boxes and toy guns.]|
I don't know when it happened but my work room has become something of a storage closet. It seems like magazines, plastic models, model guns, air guns and so forth keep coming in but never leave. It's becoming harder to even find the space for a walkway through the room. Lately, I only use the room the one day a week when my assistant comes to help out. So mostly, I work in the living room where my children bother me constantly.
|Seru no Kanzentai kansei!! |
|Picture: [Close-up drawing of a VERY fat Toriyama wearing sunglasses.]|
Recently I met an old friend. He pretty much said the following, "It looks like you put on some weight." He was right. I have gotten a little pudgy. I'm only 174 cm. [5'9"] but I weigh 73 kilograms [161 lbs]. It might not seem like much, but when I was younger, my arms, legs, chest and everything was on the skinny side, so I really seem fat now. If I don't exercise more, I'll wind up like the picture above. And I'll probably have to diet too. Sighhhhhh. I ate too much again.
|Seru geemu hajimaru |
The Cel Game Begins (Plus, Trunks The Story)
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama in a long shirt, with one hand behind his head.]|
As can be expected, having one's own comic serialized in a weekly magazine is a considerable effort. Since I've continued to work non-stop on such publications (Dr. Slump and Dragon Ball) for a total of 13 years, I've become completely fatigued, both physically and psychologically. I have less will power and endurance than the editing and publishing people expect of me. So, before self-destructing, I had better reduce my workload and relax my deadlines. This would be better for both me and my family, and would result in my creating better material.
|Gokuu o koeta senshi |
The Fighter That Surpasses Gokuu
|Picture: [Close-up of robot Toriyama, looking down and to the left, wearing a cap, shirt and sweatsuit.]|
The good thing about being a manga artist is that I can take my vacations whenever I want. Whenever I go somewhere, like a hot spring or Disneyland, I can avoid going on crowded days like Saturdays or Sundays; just check out the weather and go. I can also do things like, say, "Let's go on a trip tomorrow!" On weekdays, the hotels and places are empty... However my son is about to enter grade school, and I'll no longer be able to use my special techniques. The roads are going to be crowded!! The trains are going to be stuffed too!! Phew!!
|Sayounara Senshi-tachi |
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama wearing a paper Gokuu mask.]|
In this comic, Son Gokuu dies. I usually don't get too strongly attached to the characters I draw. However, I think that the death of the main character, after drawing him for almost 10 years, is sad. I tried to think of some other way, but the best way was for him to die. I did my best so that it wasn't gloomy. Son Gokuu, I'm sorry -- please forgive me.
|Nyuu hiiroo tanjou!! |
Introducing the New Hero!!
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama in face mask, struggling as he peddles on his bicycle.]|
A long time has passed since I was last on a bicycle; just a short ride tires my legs out completely. A one-day walk with my children around Tokyo Disneyland resulted in my coming down with a fever the next day. At the beach, I flipped pebbles into the ocean to show how good I am at pitching; which led to my arms hurting so much that I couldn't draw any pictures afterwards. In brief, I'm SHORT of exercise. I should leave my work and play around more!
|Ugoki Hajimeta sakusen |
The Plan Begins to Come Together
|Picture: [Profile close-up of Toriyama, looking towards the floor.]|
Spring is just around the corner. Why does my son suddenly start to ask me "Please take me skiing," now? As mentioned previously, I'm very sensitive to the cold, so I've been dreading this phrase. I can not understand why people intentionally go to cold places (as in the case of skiing.) Anyway, I'll go with him because I like sports in general. However, I'll probably catch a cold and come down with a high fever by the time this book is published. Sigh...
|Shukumei no taiketsu Son gokuu tai Bejiita |
The Fated Confrontation: Son Gokuu vs Vejiita
|Picture: [Drawing of Toriyama spread out, looking stunned.]|
Somehow or other since this year started, it feels like the rate of my busyness has accelerated. Added to my serial Dragon Ball, I have my Famicon work and my work with V-Jump and my work with plastic models with my friends. At the same time, I have to think about the plans for building my Bird Studio. And while I was screaming about that, my dog got sick and I had to go to the vet a lot of times (he did get better though). I want some time to relax!!
|Saraba hokori takaki Senshi |
Farewell, Arrogant Fighter
|Picture: [Drawing of a grinning Toriyama relaxing in a hot spring bath, with steamed up glasses and a towel on his head.]|
It's been a fast ten years since I've started writing Dragon Ball. It's a wonder that a goof-off like me could do that. I'm a lazy bum who always plays around with my hobbies instead of working. It felt like I woke up one day and thought, `Oh crap! I've worked hard!' Has it really been ten years? Maybe I do have some stick-to-it-iveness.
|Chikyuugun, Saigo no himitsu heiki!! |
Earth Warrior, the Final Secret Weapon!!
|Picture: [Drawing of Matoryoushika, wearing Gokuu's training outfit, looking up at it's halo.]|
My ten-year old dog -- whose picture was in book 13 -- just died. His heart had been bad for about half a year now. We'd taken him to the veternarian for natural diseases he's had -- colds and stuff -- but it really didn't do any good. Our neighborhood vet really did a good job, and was very nice. I'd like to thank him very much.
|Ganbare Suupaa Gotenkusu-kun |
Try Your Best, Super Gotenks-kun
|Picture: [Shot of Toriyama from behind, jumping into the air with glee.]|
Now that this book is out, I figure I only have to do 3 more books before the series is over. And because of all you wonderful fans, it looks like this series is going to end as a popular one. Thank you!! I'm sorry, but I'd like to start up a new series and do it at a slower, more relaxed pace. I'll make Book 42 extra big, like this one, so I can end the series there.
|Bai bai Doragonwaarudo.|
Byebye Dragon World.
|Picture: [Robot Toriyama wearing traditional clothing, kneeling on a pillow, looking at the reader.]|
After long last, the final volume is here. About this column, I am writing it as if the series was actually continuing. I'd like to thank everyone that has read all 42 volumes over such a long time. I'd like to add special thanks for all of the fan letters and presents I've received. I apologize for not replying to all of you. Thank you very from the bottom of my heart.