English Dub Review: Dragon Ball Super “A Valiant Fight! Master Roshi’s Blaze of Glory!”

Make way for the true master of martial arts. Master Roshi is here to show us how it’s done.

Overview (Spoilers Below)

Master Roshi is all by himself in the arena, wandering between rocks keeping track of the different fighters getting knocked out of the tournament. All is well until Roshi gets ambushed by a young woman from Universe 4, named Caway. She’s one of the more beautiful fighters we’ve seen so far, and, when her combat ability doesn’t work against Roshi’s martial arts experience, resorts to seduction instead. All almost seems lost when Master Roshi starts succumbing to his old pervy ways, but he manages to stop himself at the last minute and turns the tables on Caway. Buffing up his body, he terrifies Caway at the prospect of getting groped by his gross old man self, and she runs off the edge of the arena to protect her “purity.”

The next fighter Master Roshi comes across is another woman named Dercori, who’s able to use illusions and shadows to her advantage. She proves to be quite the fighter, sending out tons of illusions that put Master Roshi on the run. What’s worse, when she’s in shadow, she only becomes that much stronger. However, Roshi wins with his swathes of experience yet again, sealing Dercori in a jar designed to be effective against evil spirits. This knocks Dercori out, though it does prompt an argument over the rules from the peanut gallery.

One more fighter from Universe 4 stands in Master Roshi’s way, Ganos. Enraged by the defeat of his friends from his universe, Ganos goes all out against Roshi, but Roshi is able to dodge Ganos’ attacks without much difficulty. That is until Ganos starts powering up and begins to whoop Roshi’s frail body around the arena. Roshi isn’t done yet, though. Despite being an old man, he still has some power left in his body. Thanking his students for reminding him of his own strength, he launches a Kamehameha wave that decimates Ganos at the cost of his own body.

It looks like Master Roshi might be done for, but Goku runs to his side and restarts his heart with his ki. Goku embraces his old teacher in a touching moment between them and carries Roshi on his shoulder to the next step of the tournament.

Our Take:

In a shounen series, sometimes it’s not the big fights that are the most fun to watch, but the smaller ones that challenge characters who don’t wield the godlike powers that the protagonist usually has in a shounen series. Master Roshi takes on that role in this week’s episode of Dragon Ball Super that shines as an awesome singular story. Well-paced, well-animated and truly classic in its orchestration, this is another great episode in a series full of great episodes.

Personally, Master Roshi is my favorite character in the world of “Dragon Ball”. His fun mix of wise and perverted decked out with some cool shades and old man sandals always lend some excitement to an episode. Not to mention, Master Roshi isn’t even that powerful, existing as one of the “B” players in the Z Warriors, but still manages to find a way to be useful in this tournament. Unique characters face unique challenges, and Roshi is no exception to that here. I loved that Roshi has not just an external battle, but an internal one between him and his own old man desires. This isn’t anything new, but it’s still fun to watch and makes this episode both exciting from a battle perspective and as a bit of comic relief from the intensity of the other battles. What is new, however, is that Roshi uses his perverted nature as a weapon, causing his opponent to run in terror to the edge of the arena, which was just downright hilarious. Roshi’s fights are less about overwhelming strength for him, and more about experience and technique, which gives his battles a charm that Goku’s don’t usually have. We even go into some uncharted territory in this episode, having there be an argument about the rules of Master Roshi’s special attack. I always like it when this series surprises us with something new and interesting, even if it’s just for a side bit.

This is a great episode by itself but is also a standout story for long-time viewers of the show who want to see a beloved side character get some much-needed screen time. This is Master Roshi’s first time-fighting in quite a while, and it’s great to see that his debut episode doesn’t disappoint. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some sunglasses and a pair of sandals to go buy.


Erich Hau

Erich is a northern California based writer on the front lines of the nerd frontier. When he's not burning the midnight oil he enjoys musicals, smooth jazz, and a good cup of dark roast. Cream and sugar not included.

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