- This article is about the episode. For the soundtrack, see The Arrival of Raditz (soundtrack).
The Arrival of Raditz is the first episode of the Raditz Saga and the first episode in the original Saban dub of the Dragon Ball Z series. Its original American air date was September 13, 1996. It features a reunion of the Dragon Ball Gang after five years at Kame House, as well as the debut of Goku's son Gohan and his brother Raditz in the anime.
The Saiyan Saga begins five years after the events depicted at the end of Dragon Ball. A reunion at the Kame House reunites Goku with his old master, Master Roshi, and his friends Krillin and Bulma, who all have not seen each other in five years. Goku surprises everyone by bringing along his four-year-old son, Gohan.
Unfortunately, the reunion is interrupted by the arrival of a mysterious being, who identifies himself as a Saiyan by the name of Raditz. Raditz identifies Goku as Kakarot and berates him for not completing his "mission". Further complicating matters, Raditz also claims that Goku is from the same Saiyan race as he is, and that he and Goku are in fact brothers. Goku and Krillin understandably think that Raditz is nuts, however Master Roshi reveals that there may be some truth to the Saiyan's words. In a major turning point in the series, Master Roshi reveals that Goku's adopted grandfather, Grandpa Gohan, found a strange space capsule in the woods containing a baby Goku. As a baby, Goku was violent and ill-tempered, however an accident caused him to fall and bump his head, which in turn changed Goku into the happy, amicable child that everyone came to know and love.
This new revelation shocks Goku, who refuses to believe its validity. Raditz then goes on to state that Goku's original purpose was to destroy all life on Earth, which he should have done in a matter of years after his arrival. Raditz also reveals that the Saiyans' original home planet, Planet Vegeta, was destroyed by an asteroid some twenty years earlier, and that there are only four Saiyans left, including Goku. Finally, Raditz mentions that he needs his brother's help in destroying all life on a distant planet. Goku refuses, which prompts Raditz to notice Gohan (who still retains his Saiyan tail), which leads Raditz to threaten the fate of the child. Goku tries to attack, but is quickly defeated by Raditz, who then kidnaps Gohan.
- Raditz arrives on Earth.
- Raditz reveals that Goku is his brother, and that both are Saiyans from the planet Vegeta.
- Raditz kidnaps Gohan.
- Pioneer's DVD/VHS release for this episode uses an alternate title card.
- Raditz says that Planet Vegeta was destroyed three years ago. However, flashbacks imply that Vegeta was a kid back then, and during the episode Another Transformation?, Frieza says "I'm sure I eliminated all the Saiyans except for Vegeta, Nappa, and Raditz 20 years ago." It is likely that this was an error, both on the dub and Raditz's part, as the original dub was known for continuity errors.
- The farmer appears to be killed, but is heard mumbling after Raditz hits him with the bullet. On the other hand, his head is never shown after the mortal blow, and it is possible that he was mortally wounded. It is also possible this inconsistency is an act of censorship in the similar vein of "another dimension".
- Raditz hints on the existence of Frieza in this episode, explaining that the Saiyans sell planets to "clients".
- Gohan states that he is five and a half, this would require him to have been conceived roughly 6 years and 3 months before this episode, yet this episode takes place only five years after the last episode of Dragon Ball, but they had not seen each other in years before these last few episodes. This does not make sense.
- This episode and The World's Strongest Team contain Shuki Levy music cues which were not used in any other episodes.