Dragon Ball (ドラゴンボール Doragon Bōru ) is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Akira Toriyama. It was originally serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump from 1984 through 1995; later the 519 individual chapters were published into 42 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha. Dragon Ball was inspired by the Chinese folk novel Journey to the West. It follows the adventures of Son Goku from his childhood through adulthood as he trains in martial arts and explores the world in search of the seven mystical objects known as the Dragon Balls, which can summon a wish-granting dragon when gathered. Along his journey, Goku makes several friends and battles a wide variety of villains, many of whom also seek the Dragon Balls for their own desires.
With the ending of Dragon Ball, Toei Animation quickly released a second anime television series, Dragon Ball Z (ドラゴンボールZ(ゼット) Doragon Bōru Zetto , commonly abbreviated as DBZ). Picking up where the first left off, Dragon Ball Z is adapted from the final twenty-six volumes of the manga series. It premiered in Japan on Fuji Television on April 26, 1989, taking over its predecessor's time slot, and ran for 291 episodes until its conclusion on January 31, 1996.