Main article: Dragon Ball Z: Dead Zone
Garlic Jr. is on a vengeful quest to become Guardian of Earth. In order to have his wish fulfilled, his servants kidnap Goku's son Gohan to get the Dragon Ball he is carrying. Garlic Jr. then summons Shenron using the Dragon Balls and wishes for eternal life. Goku must combine forces with his archrival Piccolo Jr. in order to save the world. With Piccolo's, and later Krillin's, help, Goku is able to defeat Garlic Jr.'s evil servants and rescue Gohan.
Feeling responsible for Garlic Jr., Kami arrives and confronts him. However, he is unable to defeat him, and in a last ditch effort Kami decides to sacrifice himself to kill Garlic Jr. However, Piccolo and Goku arrive in time to take on Garlic Jr., but after a long hard battle, they find themselves defeated and exhausted. Garlic Jr. opens a Dead Zone portal in order to trap everyone within.
With time running out, and with the Earth moments away from being sucked into oblivion, Goku realizes that the massive dormant power that lies within his four-year-old son is Earth's last hope against Garlic Jr.'s Dead Zone. Gohan's hidden power appears, and he sends Garlic Jr. into the portal, trapping him inside, and saving the planet.
The Black Water Mist
Main article: Garlic Jr. Saga
Between the time of Dead Zone and the Garlic Jr. Saga, Garlic Jr. was trapped in the Dead Zone, but was able to escape thanks to the power of his planet, the Makyo Star. Garlic Jr. returns to Earth to take revenge on Goku and his friends for sending him to the Dead Zone. He gathers the Spice Boys and finds the Black Water Mist, a powerful mist that brainwashes all life on Earth to act like vampires (in the Japanese version, it is stated that all people and animals exposed to it become demons). Life on Earth for the Z Warriors was just getting back to normal following the battle between Frieza and Goku on Namek, though Goku had not yet returned to Earth. Garlic Jr. traps his mortal enemy, Kami, and his servant Mr. Popo, in a bottle.
The battles during the Garlic Jr. saga take place on Kami's Lookout, where Piccolo and Gohan fight Garlic Jr. and his team of Spice Boys. However, the rest of the Z Fighters on Master Roshi's island are not so lucky, having also been affected by the Black Water Mist. Master Roshi, Chi-Chi, Yamcha, Puar, Oolong, and Bulma all fall prey to Garlic Jr.'s evil plan and are transformed. A battle ensues between those transformed and those who managed to escape the mist. Maron, Krillin, and Gohan are seriously outnumbered, and things look grim.
Piccolo is bitten by Yamcha and is seemingly affected by the mist. However, his arrival buys time for Krillin and Gohan to get Maron out and escape, and they all head to the Lookout to aid Kami, where they discover that he and Mr. Popo were imprisoned by Garlic Jr.
Battle on Kami's Lookout
With no other choice, the two of them face off against the Spice Boys. Though at a disadvantage, the tide turns when Piccolo shows up and frees both Kami and Mr. Popo by pretending to be infected by the Mist, when in reality his Namekian biology makes him immune. While Krillin, Gohan, and Piccolo fight the Spice Boys and Garlic Jr., Kami and Mr. Popo travel deep inside the Lookout to find out where the former Guardians of Earth dwell after death. The Sacred Water is the only antidote to the Black Water Mist and must be released through an exit at the bottom of the Lookout, so that it will spread over the entire planet before sunset, at which point the Black Water Mist's effects become permanent. After a battle of wills with the former Guardians, Kami is allowed to use the air currents, and cures everyone on Earth. But in a rage, Garlic Jr. uses the power of the Makyo Star to transform into a large, even more powerful state.
It seems that all hope is lost, as Garlic Jr. is still immortal thanks to the Dragon Balls, but the villain makes the same mistake as last time and opens the Dead Zone once again. With Krillin and Piccolo damaged badly, it's up to Gohan to throw them into a force field which he holds up by himself. Garlic Jr. plans on taking the whole Earth out with the Dead Zone, but Gohan manages to destroy the Makyo Star, sapping Garlic Jr.'s strength immediately. Now lacking his previous power he is again trapped in his own prison, this time for eternity as the Makyo Star has been destroyed. Garlic Jr. and the Spice Boys have been defeated, but this time without the heroic abilities and wits of Goku. Life on Earth returns to normal.