Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Dragon Ball: Plan to Eradicate the Super Saiyans

Dragon Ball: Plan to Eradicate the Super Saiyans is an updated, shortened redraft of an OAV originally released in conjunction with a NES game. Continuing the interactive tie-in theme, unless you live in Japan, this TV episode length fighter is only available with the Dragon Ball: Raging Blast 2 video game. Although stuffed with beefed up versions of pre-Cell movie villains, Eradicate centres around the throwaway idea that the Saiyans were not indigenous to the planet Frieza destroyed.

Eradicate begins with Giant Ape Saiyans trashing the science civilisation of the Tuffles. The dying race's greatest scientist Dr Lychee constructs a machine powered by grudges that gathers the animosity created by the brigandish Saiyans, eventually giving birth to an avenging android named Hatchiyack. In this sense, Eradicate is essentially a galactic reconfiguring of Dr Gero's Red Ribbon revenge with Hatchiyack standing in for Cell.

Hatchiyack isn't really up to the high standards of Akira Toriyama's bestiary. There are few interesting design flourishes - an executioner's cowl and suspenders, both cerise coloured growths covering his milky pink flesh - but the artificial fighter reads more like a background heavy. Eradicate should be great, a short, concise rummage through Dragon Ball's action tropes, but it comes off businesslike and impersonal. It's not all drab though, a few wide shots have spikier, off-brand renders of the main cast and Hatchiyack's defeat as at least built out of a Son Goku character moment. The best bit is when all the Z cast line up to throw their ki blasts, their cataclysmic powers warping the visuals into fluid, molten energy.

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